Author Topic: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24  (Read 415 times)

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Offline bluecheese

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USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« on: August 02, 2018, 08:40:24 pm »
Is the USA PRS worth the extra?  Any advice?

Offline DarrellW

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2018, 10:45:59 pm »
My take on it is it depends on whether you want a guitar to play or one to keep as an investment (maybe).
I’ve played USA and SE’s and still don’t have either, I know that the SE is everything I need but still am not 100% convinced that if I would be completely happy with it. To buy a USA would mean that it would be a financial stretch I could do without, plus I already have a few inexpensive guitars that I’m quite happy with; it’s a big dilemma!
If you can afford and justify the cost and you are sure that it’s what you really want then go for it, if you don’t then the SE is a great guitar for its price, well made and good to play - either way you can’t go wrong!
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Offline Cue Zephyr

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2018, 11:35:48 pm »
Yes it's worth it. That said, I have an SE.
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Offline Styrr

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2018, 02:39:41 pm »
Only you can make the decision of whether it is worth it or not.

That doesn’t help, so let’s have a look at the similarities and differences.

The SE is Korean made, with Korean (PRS specced)   hardware. Trem saddle, 85/15 pickups and tuners.
The S2 is USA made with PRS USA  85/15 pickups electronics; switches etc.. I heard/read somewhere that they had the Korean bridge and tuners. That may not be true, as the S2 has locking tuners – the SE doesn’t
Also the SE only comes with the wide/thin neck profile only. Whereas the S2 is listed as Pattern regular. A slightly fatter but not quite as wide profile. Check PRS website for exact measurements.  If you don’t like the wide/thin necks then the SE is out.
Strings are 9-42 on the Se and 10-46 on the S2
Both come with Gigbags

The S2 is just a cheaper version of the Core Custom 24, In that they still have the same quality but save money on the simpler body carve and the finish is no way near as time consuming as the Core one. Not sure that the S2 has rolled fret board edges as the Core does. The SE doesn’t.
Currently, new the SE cost approx £800; the S2 £1500.
Neither is what you could call an investment guitar. You will lose more on reselling the S2.

I doubt that you will be disappointed with either ,sound or quality wise. The SE is at a price point that gets you a very decent playable guitar. The S2 sits above that, but is it almost twice as good ? Not in my opinion. Note that is not the same as saying is it worth it though.

Best advice is to try them and buy second hand if you can.

My experience with them was as follows. I’d heard about the SE but never tried one. So I went to a shop that had them in stock. The first one I picked from the hangar played and sounded amazing, so much so that I bought it there and then. After about 6 months i thought if this so good what will the Core one be like. I just had to try one. And yes I walked out of the shop with one. Not that it sounded or played 4 times as good. But I still think it was worth it.

The only S2 I have tried was a semi hollow custom 22, but it felt and sounded as good as the core ones.

Take care
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Offline Majik

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2018, 04:13:28 pm »
I doubt that you will be disappointed with either ,sound or quality wise. The SE is at a price point that gets you a very decent playable guitar. The S2 sits above that, but is it almost twice as good ? Not in my opinion. Note that is not the same as saying is it worth it though.

That applies all the way up from even cheap guitars. You can get a cheap, pretty playable electric guitar for around £200 (especially if you pay a little extra on getting it set up well). Everything after that is kinda gravy. Is a £400 guitar twice as good? Probably not.

Obviously, one of the things you can find yourself paying for is "tone", with different pickups giving different sounds. But even with that there's quite a bit of marketing involved: an expensive pickup shouldn't cost drastically more to make than a cheap pickup. In general, the cost of the components used is low, and the process is easily automated to produce a consistent, high-quality product.

Yes, you can get "hand-wound" pickups, but there's no reason in the world why a hand-wound pickup will inherently sound "better" than a machine wound one.

So, all the way up you are dealing with diminishing returns on guitars in terms of playability and tone.

That doesn't mean you shouldn't buy a more expensive guitar. It just means that you shouldn't assume it will sound better or be significantly more playable because it's more expensive. A huge part of guitars is how they inspire you.

I've got a PRS S2 now, not because I needed it, but because I wanted it. It was also a good deal because it was in an end-of-range sale. It looks and feels lovely, sounds great, and is a versatile guitar. Perhaps it inspires me to practice more but, other than that, it doesn't make me play any better.

So, IMO, both of the guitars you list are good guitars. The SE's are, in general excellent, especially those made in the last few years (they were always good but recently they seem to have upped their game a bit on the quality). Unless you feel particularly drawn to the USA PRS S2 and can easily afford it, I would suggest the PRS SE would suit you nicely.

Cheers,

Keith
Guitars: PRS Singlecut S2, Fender Tele Lite Ash, G&L Legacy Tribute, Freshman Apollo 2 OCBX
Amps: Bugera G5 Head, Boss Katana 100
All sorts of other stuff.

Offline Cue Zephyr

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2018, 11:26:24 pm »
So, IMO, both of the guitars you list are good guitars. The SE's are, in general excellent, especially those made in the last few years (they were always good but recently they seem to have upped their game a bit on the quality). Unless you feel particularly drawn to the USA PRS S2 and can easily afford it, I would suggest the PRS SE would suit you nicely.
I believe this is starting from 2015. At least I think that's what Dan Graves said, and a friend of mine who knows his guitars a little better than I do. If my SE wasn't a 2015 I might not even have gotten it.

In response to diminishing returns, I believe there to be a sweet-spot in the price range. It will vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and from instrument to instrument. For example, I think a guitar of a certain price will be better than say a mandolin at that same certain price because 1) there's less market for mandolins and 2) the tolerances are lower because the instrument is so small.

In my personal experience, guitars get really good from about half a grand up to about a grand and I think the sweet spot is around there, maybe a little higher because manufacturers will make sure their guitars made in the country of origin will be better than those that aren't.

My favorite guitar is in fact American-made.
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Offline Dan Graves

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2018, 07:17:56 pm »
At least I think that's what Dan Graves said

Actually, that's what you said  :P , I said, and I quote (apologies to the non-Dutch users)
Quote from: That filthy opinionated snob Dan Graves
Ik ben het niet helemaal eens met de opmerking dat 2015 en 2016 gitaren beter zijn dan de modellen van daarvoor, de 25th anniversary edities waren namelijk ook van uitstekende kwaliteit, en er zijn altijd uitschieters bij de gewone series.

I'll let it slide this one time, but next time I will be forced to dispense justice, in the form of a cluebat.

Insert obligatory "I'm kidding folks! I'd never harm cue, I love the guy" warning here, just in case one of our newer members* decides to invoke Poe's law
-------------------------------------

Purely speculation based on merely my experience : since 2009 (25th anniversary of PRS) the quality of the PRS SE's slowly got better, far surpassing some other budget brands in their price range.
They already were very decent back then, and currently I'd gladly recommend the SE's, provided the person asking for advice tries one (or several) PRS guitars BEFORE buying one, because of people tend to end up either loving or hating the necks on ALL PRS guitars, I've yet to see someone fall somewhere in the middle.

*Something that is rather likely to happen to someone who isn't yet accustomed to my bad jokes or my, eh, 'opinionated and inflammatory' way of talking to people
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Offline Cue Zephyr

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2018, 07:56:46 pm »
Ah xx--xx. That's just my bad. Sorry about that. In my mind, you and my guitar-building friend just sort of merged into the "knowledge and experience I don't have regarding guitars" category. ;)
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Offline Dan Graves

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2018, 08:44:53 pm »
Ah xx--xx. That's just my bad. Sorry about that. In my mind, you and my guitar-building friend just sort of merged into the "knowledge and experience I don't have regarding guitars" category. ;)

At this point, I'm fairly sure you have a broader knowledge on guitars than I do, my only advantage is that I have 20 years worth of experience.
Also, I take it that you know I'm just kidding, if I actually took offense at being misquoted, it would be time for a well deserved time-out  ;)

« Last Edit: August 05, 2018, 10:47:59 pm by close2u »
"So the secret to good self-esteem is to lower your expectations to the point where they are already met?" -- Hobbes
"Right. We should take pride in our mediocrity!" -- Calvin

Offline close2u

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Re: USA PRS S2 custom 24 versus Korean PRS-SE custom 24
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2018, 10:49:00 pm »
Personal abuse and bad language don't fly in this forum - pets deleted.
No more thanks.

 

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