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PRS SE Santana Guitar Review
Okay, so I've always been a sucker for a long slim neck, and shapely body that felt snug and comfortable when up close; I found it with the PRS SE Santana guitar.
- Carlos Santana's influenced a range of PRS SE guitars, which launched in 2001, the new one was launched this year and is the latest in a line of five versions, none of which even comes near to this version for style, finish and quality of wood or accessories. Unlike the other models, the new one looks almost identical to the PRS Santana.
- Okay so there are a few very minor details which are different, but once you plug in this guitar all that pales into insignificance.
The all round perfect guitar
There are tons of official write-ups, so you don't need one from me all that techno-babble, you probably want to know what it feels like, is it as comfortable as a pair of old slippers.
Imagine heaven…no not burgers the size of wagon wheel hubcaps smothered in fried onions and tomato ketchup and constant flowing fountains of beer.
The other one; giant stacks 32 x 12" speakers topped with Marshall or Mesa boogie amps, all around you in a circle like 'stonehenge': basket loads of wires and guitar gadgets…where angels played guitar even before they had wings.
Imagine your wildest rock and roll dream, the biggest rock and roll gig of all time, imagine a note played and bent up a tone and sustain that sings so long that you could grow a beard before it ends...the ghosts of the really great guitar ledgends swirling and spinning around them...you might find it here.
Phew well that got that out of my system.
Some Technical Stuff
24 1/2 inches
Rosewood with “oldschool” bird inlays
BODY Mahogany with maple top and flame maple veneer
BRIDGE PRS-designed tremolo
PICKUPS PRS Santana humbuckers
TUNERS PRS designed
volume, master tone,
three-position pickup selector
For quite sometime I've been a fan of Santana's guitar sound and style. I could never really justify the expense of the Santana PRS, so when this model came out this year I had to see one. I made the mistake of not going to look at the last guitar I bought and although it was as advertised I was disappointed with certain little bits, so I decided that this time I would seek out this one before buying. I was so pleased that I did. Many thanks to the guys at Wildwire music in Selby Yorkshire for their time and patience.
If you have never seen the PRS guitars in the flesh as you might say, well then you might be forgiven for thinking that they are just another guitar. Think again Tiger, because they are very different. The finish is something else, they hang from the walls like crystals and reflect every morsel of light.
I have a couple of Les Paul's that feel like anchors around your neck after half an hour, but not this; I have to keep feeling it to make sure it is still there. The contouring of the guitar body seems to fit perfectly. The feel of the neck is very good too. I was not sure when the neck's design was said to be 'wide - fat' whether or not it would suit me, but it does. It makes the neck on my Les Paul Gary Moore signature guitar seem like a pick axe handle; so maybe it is not so wide or fat as you might think. I tried two guitars in this range and despite the mass production, they did feel different; I really can't tell you what it was but just something.
Despite the SE models being manufactured in Korea, [not that there is anything wrong with Korean craftsmanship] and being maybe £2000 cheaper than the American made ones, the finish and attention to detail is absolutely great. The sound of the pickups is very close to that which Santana is famous for and have tremendous sustain when needed.
The SE Santana is the first SE model to offer a 24 1/2–inch scale, but the SE has 22 frets while the upscale PRS Santana model has 24. The neck has a similar wide and fat profile, and the rosewood fingerboard is decorated with bird inlays.
It also comes with the PRS tremelo arm, which unlike some designs does not pull it out of tune when you use it. The strings are also fed in from the back through the bridge.
Other Signature Guitars
PRS do not only work with just Santana, but so far there are 15 top guitarists from different genres of music with their own PRS guitar.
Oriantha is a special one worth mentioning, a young, talented Australian female guitarist who was to tour on Michael Jackson's fated last tour is a star of the future with her own PRS. I think this young woman has done really well in what is a male dominated world of rock. Her good looks and charm have obviously been a help too, but look beyond that and she's a great guitarist.