Clean lower mids, smooth, treble response with not too much sharpness. The body might feel different but the mahogany neck is an old friend. Neither is created with a vintage tone in mind, yet they do edge more towards the hollow ES-330 than the ES-335, which is a little more solidbody-sounding. The biggest neck profile offered by PRS, the Wide Fat neck is now called the Pattern profile on the USA Core models. Your Pedalboards 2020: Part Deux, 1. Playability, too, feels great in every way—from the impressively well-dressed frets to the easy-to-love neck shape. It is just too much guitar for me I think. To be accurate, the ‘new’ CE 24 Semi-Hollow isn’t actually new. Dave Hunter is a writer and musician who has worked in both the U.S.A. and the U.K. The Hollowbody II has a five-ply figured maple top and back; with laminated mahogany on the sides. The SE Hollowbody Standard and its cousin the Hollowbody II are built in China at a facility run by PRS partner Core-Tek Musical Instruments. Classic bird inlays visually tie the guitar to upmarket models and complement the white binding on the body’s top and back, fretboard, and headstock, which are, in turn, a nice contrast to the McCarty tobacco burst finish. It is, however, a pity that PRS didn’t deploy the four-control toggle treatment of the 594, and position on the shoulder just so. This, however, is a stained basswood veneer. Anyway, I also currently own a McCarty 594 Semi-Hollow Limited that I am thinking of getting rid of. Among major guitar brands that build affordable lines overseas, PRS has always stood out for its reliably high-quality SE Series. It has been a long time coming but here we have two classy PRS Hollowbodies in the more affordable SE range. With that they could really give the almost thinline-semi market a run. Longtime readers may recall that the PRS S2 Vela was the coverstar of G&B back in June 2015. Privacy Policy | Both the SE models have the adjustable style. Receive news and offers from our other brands? I dig the 58/15 “S” humbuckers (which read 7.74k ohms in the neck and 8.46k ohms in the bridge). */, Copyright ©2020. The SE Hollowbody Standard has a deep body that pushes 2 ½" thick at the peak of the top arch. Both guitars have a top laminate measuring just under 4mm thick. All Rights Reserved The headstock outline has been enlarged. © The guitars are very tidy inside. We recommend moving this block and the preceding CSS link to the HEAD of your HTML file. The adjustable wrapover Stoptail bridge is the same model that is used by PRS on various guitars throughout its ranges. Clean settings also reveal how dynamic the guitar is—sensitive to picking attack and volume attenuation adjustments alike. The setups on both guitars is excellent. More on that later...). Both SE Holllowbody guitars employ an ebony fingerboard – quite a rarity in PRS’s history, although commonplace in the archtop world. Consider these guitars blank canvases in terms of the sounds you can get. The SEs certainly seem a bit more ES-like initially. Please refresh the page and try again. First Look: Hughes & Kettner Spirit Nano Series. As with so many PRS SE guitars, the SE Hollowbody Standard offers few visible clues about its down-market price positioning or overseas origins. The fine-playing setup made it easy to dive into any style with confidence. Although high-end, U.S.-made PRS models are occasionally critiqued (often by those who haven’t played them) as “too precise” or “too clean,” I found this very precisely, cleanly made SE full of personality and completely inspiring. The humbuckers here are simply controlled by a three-way toggle selector, master volume and tone. And on more than one occasion, it left me wondering why I would ever spend more on a gigging guitar. Receive mail from us on behalf of our trusted partners or sponsors? All rights reserved. The Vela – also the Latin word for a ship’s sails, the Spanish word for wakefulness and the name of a constellation in the southern sky – is the latest addition to the S2 family. Guitar World is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Enlarged to suit the upscaled body, this headstock has the same dimensions that PRS uses on its SE acoustics. . This is in keeping with the more acoustic-like construction style we see here. But it's a different story with the pickups. The covered 58/15 ‘S’ pickups are Indonesian versions of PRS’s USA 58/15 humbuckers and were wound specifically for these guitars. PRS’s proven ability to bring top quality and clever design to functional reality at a fair price is confidently embodied in the SE Hollowbody Standard. The primary difference between the two SE Hollowbody guitars is the wood used for the top and back. Future Publishing Limited Quay House, The Ambury, Each delivered appealing richness, sweetness, and girth while maintaining outstanding articulation—even with distortion in the mix. The setup on both guitars is excellent. The Standard’s neck is a little deeper, measuring 22.5mm at the 1st fret and 25mm at the 12th. It’s ideal if you want to use heavier gauge or flat-wound strings. PRS’s proven ability to bring top quality design to functional reality at a fair price is embodied in the SE Hollowbody Standard. The ebony fingerboards are more unfamiliar, having rarely used by PRS through the years. (There’s no coil splitting on this model.) Unplugged, the guitar sings with impressive volume, resonance, and balance. The standard PRS headstock outline, only bigger! Bird inlays are not to everyone's tastes. There is, however, a small block positioned under the bridge, connecting the top to the back and allowing PRS to fit its Stoptail bridge. The SE Hollowbody Standard has a deep body that pushes 2 ½" thick at the peak of the top arch. Before the first PRS Hollowbody model hit the streets in 1998, PRS fans were probably challenged to imagine how the hollowbody format would work with the Maryland company’s signature silhouette. The full-width neck forms the heel and this slots in nicely under the neck pickup cavity. BA1 1UA. Through a clean amp, the guitar is clear, warm, and deep, with a touch of edgy bite that helps it cut in each pickup position. The Standard’s darker voice might make it more of a specialist's guitar. From the company’s offshore range and affordable USA line respectively, the SE 245 Zebrawood and Reclaimed S2 Vela Semi-Hollow are familiar models rendered with some interesting timber choices. To match the sides on both our review guitars, the neck is painted opaque black, so we can’t tell if it’s a one-piece or not. The PRS S2 Vela is more than just an American-made PRS, it’s a really unique guitar that definitely appeals to those with non-traditional tastes. The USA Hollowbody and all-mahogany Singlecut Hollowbody sound a little more acoustic-like, yet these SE models are a little more damped, more akin to a semi-hollow build but noticeably more hollow-sounding than a centre-blocked semi. Here we have PRS’s Wide Fat profile, glued into a large neck block. The back and top are 5-ply mahogany (the SE Hollowbody II has a flame-maple top), and the guitar is entirely hollow, save for the maple block that connects the back and top and serves to anchor the bridge. The guitar is built around familiar PRS specs. It’s honestly just a blast to play. Hooked: Kenny Wayne Shepherd on Jimi Hendrix's "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)", 4. Next, I reviewed the S2 Starla. Diehard fans of the original Hollowbody might not care to admit it but, in our mind, the SE version feels better. 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