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Thread: SC58, Ebony, 53/10s

  1. #1

    SC58, Ebony, 53/10s

    It's always a joy to play a great guitar, especially one you've held your breath and waited what seems like forever for. The devil is in the details with guitars, and this'n is just a little different from most SC58s: mahogany neck, but with ebony instead of the usual RW board, 53/10s instead of the 57/08s.

    The general thinking is that ebony fingerboards tend to brighten the tone; I wouldn't say that's necessarily the case. I think what happens is that there is an impression of brightness due to a few factors.

    What happens is subtle; ebony seems to make a note more articulate at the attack, and thus give chords a tiny bit of extra string-to-string definition. More articulate note attack can fool the ear into thinking, "ah, that's brighter." But in fact the actual treble content can be the same as RW or even less, over the entire attack/decay/sustain/release cycle of a note. But that comes at the price of maybe a little less complexity in the midrange.

    So there's a tradeoff that's kind of interesting, and makes this instrument unique. Again, we're talking subtle here, these aren't the kind of differences you hear on first strum.

    And of course, the feel is a little different between ebony and RW.

    I'm still getting a handle on the 53/10s; what I can say is that they sound gorgeous, and can drive an amp from vintage clean to a roar with the volume knob. The combination of the ebony and the 53/10s is pretty cool; they seem to go well together.

    Great advice was given by Jack Gretz in spec'ing this thing out, and the efforts of the PRS team in making this dream happen are much appreciated:

    Here's a pic, the guitar has a name, Uriel:


  2. #2
    Searching for the sound tdarian's Avatar
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    Congratulations Les. I really wanted one of those but just could not get a grip on the Pattern. Thanks for the details regarding the woods, tones, and the electronics/5310s.
    If I Told You All That Went Down It Would Burn Off Both Of Your Ears

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by tdarian View Post
    Congratulations Les. I really wanted one of those but just could not get a grip on the Pattern. Thanks for the details regarding the woods, tones, and the electronics/5310s.
    Thanks!

    Fortunately, I can go between neck sizes and hardly notice, in fact, I can't even tell the difference between WF and Pattern, though I can feel the difference between those and a Regular or Thin. I think some players are much more sensitive to that stuff. I'm guessing this is especially the case for extremely well-trained players with very specific muscle memory.

    It's good that I can go from Pattern Reg to Pattern without feeling frustrated, but the price paid is that I lack the specific muscle memory with a particular instrument!

    There are certain keyboards that feel right to me as a piano player, and some where the key travel or keying speed feels absolutely crazy-wrong, so I do get how important these kinds of differences are when you're sensitive to certain things, have practiced a lot on a certain kind of instrument, etc.

  4. #4
    Junior Member gear_freak's Avatar
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    Hey Les,
    How would you compare the 53/10 and AV pickup/ebony combination? I love the 53/10s on my MEQ and your guitar configuration has me very curious. I bet splitting the 53/10s on there would sound cool. Drool some more! :-)

  5. #5
    Bless the Blues 38Roars's Avatar
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    Really Awesome! I love ebony fretboards!!

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by gear_freak View Post
    Hey Les,
    How would you compare the 53/10 and AV pickup/ebony combination? I love the 53/10s on my MEQ and your guitar configuration has me very curious. I bet splitting the 53/10s on there would sound cool. Drool some more! :-)
    I think I need to play the 53/10s more to get a handle on how they compare to the AV pickups, which I usually play split, and these don't split obviously since they're on a Singlecut.

    Honestly, I think I need more time to figure that out. I will work on it over the next few days and report back.

  7. #7
    Senior Member vchizzle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LSchefman View Post
    I think I need to play the 53/10s more to get a handle on how they compare to the AV pickups, which I usually play split, and these don't split obviously since they're on a Singlecut.

    Honestly, I think I need more time to figure that out. I will work on it over the next few days and report back.
    Great looking NGD Les! Like the subtle changes. I'd likely go 5909s, but that's just me. Those 5310s might have wires to split? Don't most PRS loaded w/them split? I know the 5708s in my stripper have coil tap wires.

  8. #8
    Senior Member veinbuster's Avatar
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    Nicely done.
    I'm a big fan of an ebony board. I have one on my hollow body.

  9. #9
    I don't know if the 53/10s on my guitar are splittable; they may be. I'll probably keep the thing stock in any event, as I don't need split tones on this one.

    After more playing, I've decided that my A-V with a trem is too completely different to be able to do a fair pickup comparison; even unplugged, the guitars sound like they're in different universes!

    What I can say so far is that the 53/10s seem very articulate, and with the ebony board seem to have plenty of sparkle on tap. I'd heard they were a little darker, but I'm not feeling that way. Maybe the way the ebony board works with them is the reason?

    They clean up really well with the volume pulled back, there's a nice clarity throughout the range, and they have what seems like plenty of push. I'll know more in a few more days.

    The more I play this guitar, the more I like it. There's a lot of vintage tone and power, but there's also a silkier quality to it that's just great!

  10. #10
    Wheels cjmwrx's Avatar
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    Gorgeous git! I have been looking at an SC58 for a bit now, I would love an ebony one with an ebony board.

    However, am I the only person that prefers the VB/HFS combo over the newer pickups?
    BDR-529

  11. #11
    Canuck moyboy's Avatar
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    Wow I love the look of ebony with the birds..... what a contrast.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by cjmwrx View Post
    Gorgeous git! I have been looking at an SC58 for a bit now, I would love an ebony one with an ebony board.

    However, am I the only person that prefers the VB/HFS combo over the newer pickups?
    I think you'd have plenty of company at Vintage Rocker!

    I like the newer pickups because they sound...older; while the older pickups sound...newer. LOL

    Quote Originally Posted by moyboy View Post
    Wow I love the look of ebony with the birds..... what a contrast.
    It does look nice, even better in person. Thanks!

  13. #13
    Senior Member veinbuster's Avatar
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    I found the ebony board on my HBII made the guitar very responsive to what I call 'textured' sounds. By that I mean changes in the attack: how hard, angle of the pick, changes in position of the contact with the string. I experiment with attack quite a bit and was very pleased with the difference between the ebony board and a rosewood board.

    I suspect this is the same observation stated in the original post and I just clicked into what those words meant to me.

  14. #14
    Geezer wilerty's Avatar
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    Ebony fretboard ... rosewood neck ... 5708s ... P22

    Last edited by wilerty; 08-13-2012 at 11:23 PM.
    Bill

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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by veinbuster View Post
    I found the ebony board on my HBII made the guitar very responsive to what I call 'textured' sounds. By that I mean changes in the attack: how hard, angle of the pick, changes in position of the contact with the string. I experiment with attack quite a bit and was very pleased with the difference between the ebony board and a rosewood board.

    I suspect this is the same observation stated in the original post and I just clicked into what those words meant to me.
    Yes! In fact, I often call the Artist V my "texture" guitar because it's so sensitive that way, which is also enhanced by the pickups. This SC's got that going on, too. Which is nice, I'm still learning to dial it in, though.

    Quote Originally Posted by wilerty View Post
    Ebony fretboard ... rosewood neck ... 5708s ... P22

    Yum! That's beautiful Bill!

  16. #16
    Junior Member Zack M 12's Avatar
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    Gorgeous!

  17. #17
    Thanks!

    The ebony has a lot of snap, and preserves the note definition with higher gain amps. So that's kind of cool!

  18. #18
    Recovering Bass Player ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! 's Avatar
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    Beautiful, Les!

    Quote Originally Posted by LSchefman View Post
    One Life

  19. #19
    Thanks, Hans!

  20. #20
    Junior Member
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    I do feel the difference between the wide fat and patter. I like the wide fat better. more comfy. The sc58 should come with wide fat instead of pattern. pattern feels thin.

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