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The Ratchet
05-05-2012, 09:09 PM
Just got this very cool black with gold hardware PRS SE Dave Navarro.

http://i1215.photobucket.com/albums/cc515/theratchet/navarro_SE_1.jpg

After putting it through the paces, here are my thoughts:

It is quite the heavy-tone shredder!! The neck is on the thinner side, and designed for fast play. With 24 frets it is somewhat comparable to a Custom 24, though it feels smaller overall in my hands slightly (both neck and body) than the Custom 24 (USA version).

The fretboard plays smooth and fast, fretwork and intonation seem very good, overall a very good player.

Hardware wise looks GREAT with all the gold, and stays in tune surprisingly well with the non-locking tuners.

For the price, out of the box, it sounds very good. And it plays quite amazing (as stated above).

Electronics is where it fall a tad short IMO, and I will be upgrading there. My issues with the electronics are minor, and include two very stiff/sticky pots (actually difficult to turn, had to check to see if it was rubbing, but is just the pot style/type I guess), and a somewhat clunky 3-pos switch. I'll likely swap these out for smoother versions.

Tonewise - I think it sounds good for rock and/or heavy metal tones. Crystal clean tones were a bit harder to conjure from it. It's definitely got the great playability with the neck/frets/etc but for me - the pickups are a little tame, and I will be placing some much hotter pickups in there, likely something from Bareknuckle BKP.

The closest guitar I have to compare it to is my ESP M-II (that came stock with Seymour Duncans, not the EMG's). However, brand new, the ESP is like 3 times the $$ of the SE Navarro, and even after I swap the pickups, at least twice as much.

So bang for the buck wise, the SE Navarro is a killer deal in looks and playability. With a few tweaks to customize to taste in the pickups department, I think this is one hard rock / heavy metal monster. When I do the pickup swap, I will post an update and some clips.

Couple extra notes: Even though I keep it in a case, it came with a very nice and sturdy maroon-red SE gig bag. Also regarding the black color, it looks like for 2012 and beyond there are no more black SE Navarro's being produced, only white ones from what I understand. So if you're looking for the black, might want to snag one up.

sergiodeblanc
05-06-2012, 02:31 AM
Bangin.

solacematt
05-06-2012, 11:47 AM
Was this the flat top version of the beveled top version? My friend ended up getting a flat top from Musicians Friend with a coupon a few months ago and is now looking into getting the beveled top. Maybe the controls were just an issue on the one that you got though? Happens sometimes I would think, though it shouldn't. I'm actually waiting for awhile to play a while beveled top version before pulling the trigger myself.

The Ratchet
05-06-2012, 02:50 PM
Was this the flat top version of the beveled top version? My friend ended up getting a flat top from Musicians Friend with a coupon a few months ago and is now looking into getting the beveled top. Maybe the controls were just an issue on the one that you got though? Happens sometimes I would think, though it shouldn't. I'm actually waiting for awhile to play a while beveled top version before pulling the trigger myself.

This is the flat top version. From what I understand, once they went to beveled, it was white-only from then on out. For me, doesn't seem to bother at all one way or the other on this, flat vs. beveled.

On the controls, perhaps. I don't have another Navarro to compare it to at the moment. As it's both pots, it's definitely the pot style/design, or maybe it was just this run of pots. It sort of the complete opposite of any of the USA models I have, whereby those pots spin like pin-wheels. I can breath on the volume and spin it lol. (In fact I remember a post on the ole' BaM'r whereby someone was asking how they can stiffen-up the USA pots).

To me somewhere in-between is optimal. But if given a choice, I'd rather the much freer-moving pots in the 'Core' USA line. Who knows though also - maybe Dave Navarro wanted them this way.

And yes if you can find a coupon online, etc. this guitar really ends up being an unbelievable deal.

slev
05-06-2012, 03:19 PM
Nice! Congrats. Love NGD. Gold hardware looks cool against the all black.

dmatthews
05-06-2012, 04:55 PM
Nice axe!
I would think the pots might loosen up a tad over time.
Good score.
8-)

veinbuster
05-06-2012, 05:29 PM
Nice.

A-Lister
09-25-2013, 09:36 AM
Was this the flat top version of the beveled top version? My friend ended up getting a flat top from Musicians Friend with a coupon a few months ago and is now looking into getting the beveled top. Maybe the controls were just an issue on the one that you got though? Happens sometimes I would think, though it shouldn't. I'm actually waiting for awhile to play a while beveled top version before pulling the trigger myself.

I have literally just got my SE Navarro through the door today. Its the white bevelled top version and wow what an incredible guitar. I have a 2008 SE Custom 24 in whale blue with mahogany/rosewood neck which I love, but the SE Navarro is a whole other different beast. Don't wait to pull the trigger do it now ;-) There are a few companies selling these for very good prices on Ebay/Amazon. I picked mine up for 399.99 and its a beauty - brand new. I must say I'm very impressed with the pickups but no doubt one day I will try and swap them with the US Navarro pups because I am a tinkerer (and I agree the SE pups are a bit weak on the single coil side which the US pups might be better on). One thing I will do immediately though (which I had done to the my SE CU24 as well as 59/09 and Dragon IIs) is to replace the tuners with some Phase II Gold locking tuners. Considering I saved so much on the price of the guitar there is a bit of room to splash out on an important upgrade. Hope you enjoy your Navarro when you get it, the neck is outstanding and feel a bit wider/thinner than my SE CU24 but very smooth and the bevel body feels really nice when you rest your arm on the body. Its been a good day today! If you guys want I will post some pics once I've had the Phase IIs put on.

kevphol
09-25-2013, 10:51 AM
Congrats! I have the same one, black flat top, and love it. I've had it for two years and have gigged it regularly. I have been very happy with it stock. No issues with stiff pots or tone for me. Plenty hot and dirty for our heavier tunes and cleans up nice and bright in my fender amp. Playability is amazing.

http://i250.photobucket.com/albums/gg269/kevphol/PRS/KevandGreg.jpg

A-Lister
11-09-2013, 04:31 PM
I have the beveled white version and it's a great guitar! Gonna get some phase II locking tuners on it! The black version looks cool! I have a SE CU24 2008 which is obviously a flat top and I like it as much as the beveled Navarro. Best of both worlds!

I think you should just replace your SE Navarro pups with US versions of the VB & HFS, will sound a lot better! But either way it's a great guitar super smooth fast neck!

axe24
11-10-2013, 06:57 AM
Congrats on ur new se dn ,i have and love my white beveled se dn guitar.i gotta say i see or feel no difference between the se dn and my se cu 24.,other then the push pull knob on dave n guitar.anyway hope u enjoy it.