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Thread: Why should I buy a SE Custom 24 Korean when price so close to American Strat?

  1. #1
    Junior Member Bret's Avatar
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    Cool Why should I buy a SE Custom 24 Korean when price so close to American Strat?

    I can buy an "American Special" Strat for $799, or a SE Custom 24 for $709.
    Wouldn't that be better value? Aren't SE models actually dolled up American clones like say Oscar Schmidt or the like?
    I'm an easy sell. Sell me!

  2. #2
    Eh, Fender's QC has been hit-or-miss to me for the past few years. Not as bad as Gibson, but still...whereas the PRS SE line has always been pretty damned bulletproof.

    Two very different guitars though. 22 frets vs. 24, SSS vs. HH, 25.5" scale vs. 25" scale, different neck profiles, bolt-on vs. set neck, alder vs. maple topped mahogany...

    Personally, I say go try both. I vote for the PRS SE, though I can respect and love both guitars. It's just a better deal IMHO, but that's just me. Your cash means your opinion is king.

  3. #3
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    Depends on what you want, as said above, very different guitars. I have a Fender Strat, and a SECU24, both are very nice. My advice would be to not judge the guitar by where it's made right off the bat. SE's are made in Korea, but their quality easily surpasses some of the other big US manufacturers. For example, the SE line blows away any sub-$1K Gibson I've tried. When you consider the additional costs of making a guitar in the US, you may actually be getting more guitar for your money with the SE if they sell at the same price.

    That being said, I like Fender guitars a lot too. Try them and see what will work best for you. The SECU24 is more of a rock machine, and it has humbuckers. It does a convincing job with blues and other styles too, especially with the new coil taps. But if you want the strat sound (less output, geared for blues etc) go for the strat.
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

    S2 Custom 22 Semi-Hollow - SE Akesson+57/08's - SE Custom 24 25th Anniversary - SE 30 Head/Cab

  4. #4
    Recovering Bass Player ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! 's Avatar
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    Threads like this crack me up. There's no linear path to a logical answer because they're different animals altogether. Guitars have a sound and a feel that has to work for you as a player.

    If you would rather have a strat, go buy a strat.

    If you'd rather have an SE, go buy an SE.
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  5. #5
    Junior Member Bret's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. Good advice. Fast too! I just wish PRS had another option. I've always admired Paul and his work. The whole farm it out to Korea thing seems like a bad move. I'm sure he will make lots of money at it. But come on, anybody can do that. The videos I've seen on SE aren't convincing. I think Paul wants to believe it. But it's pretty obvious his guys don't. It seems all too commercial to me. My notion of being a part of the PRS dream doesn't include selling out for a clone. I think Paul could do better. I think he should do better. I mean which do you prefer, Paul Reed Smith or Soul-less Corp. (like Fender or Gibson)
    I think I'm gonna wait for a deal on a used good Maryland PRS.
    Thanks though, really.
    Bret

  6. #6
    Opaque John Beef's Avatar
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    Strats aren't very good guitars for rock music. The SE Custom 24 is.

    An American Strat for $799 is going to be a bottom of the barrel USA instrument. The SE Custom 24 is a top of the line Korean instrument.

    Strats are ugly, their pickups are weak, their trems are borderline useless, the controls are poorly laid out, their neck heels are incredibly uncomfortable. They're made up of random parts quickly routed, dipped in finish and slapped together as quickly and cheaply as possible.

    I recently looked at some Fenders as an alternative for some lowered tunings that I don't want to sound like heavy metal. 9 out of 10 I picked up needed extensive fret work and a thorough setup before I would consider them a playable instrument. Then I went over and played some SEs and the Fenders simply weren't in the same league.

    My wife has a USA Fender P-bass she bought in 2001. It was replaced by a Lakland Skyline in 2005 which was simply better all around and made in Korea. Later that Skyline was only surpassed by a USA Lakland which has a quality level like a PRS or Anderson or Sadowsky or Suhr. Fender's just not that great of a company. I'm sure the custom shop stuff is up there but it's just going to be on a $799 strat.
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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Bret View Post
    Thanks guys. Good advice. Fast too! I just wish PRS had another option. I've always admired Paul and his work. The whole farm it out to Korea thing seems like a bad move. I'm sure he will make lots of money at it. But come on, anybody can do that. The videos I've seen on SE aren't convincing. I think Paul wants to believe it. But it's pretty obvious his guys don't. It seems all too commercial to me. My notion of being a part of the PRS dream doesn't include selling out for a clone. I think Paul could do better. I think he should do better. I mean which do you prefer, Paul Reed Smith or Soul-less Corp. (like Fender or Gibson)
    I think I'm gonna wait for a deal on a used good Maryland PRS.
    Thanks though, really.
    Bret
    Well, the SE line isn't new. It's been around for a long time. Besides, the Maryland instruments are alive and well. The SE line is just, as the name implies, for students who can't afford $2-3k per guitar. ;p

    Sounds like the same mentality I heard in the 80's when Jackson and the like went to Japan...and those instruments were later revered as being as good/better than their American counterparts.

    P.S. - And it's not like these guitars, like some other companies do, are made in India or China and of inferior woods like Cedro and only vaguely look like their American counterparts. You may not get figured tops (they're veneers), but you get the same tonewoods and everything. They're really great guitars, but if you're against imports in general then you've already made up your mind no?
    Last edited by SausageofPower; 12-08-2012 at 05:10 PM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member sergiodeblanc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bret View Post
    . My notion of being a part of the PRS dream doesn't include selling out for a clone. I think Paul could do better. I think he should do better.
    Call him up on Monday and tell him! but not before you go play a SE Custom, I was a doubter at one time as well.

  9. #9
    Recovering Bass Player ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! 's Avatar
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    [Face palm]

    Of course, I saw that coming. I should have said this up front....

    Dont feed the trolls, folks.
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  10. #10
    PRS Addiction CoreyT's Avatar
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    I have a new 2012 Gibson '61 SG Reissue that I paid over $2K for, and I will put up any of my three SE guitars against it.
    I love the SG for its iconic nature, and it is flawless, and the thin 60s slim neck plays fantastic.

    But the SEs play about as nice, and the pickups on them sound great too.

    Play both the Strat and the SE Custom 24.
    The SE Custom 24 is my next favorite guitar to my SG.



    PS, SOP, your inbox is full

  11. #11
    Cream Crackered Mikegarveyblues's Avatar
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    No. The SE line is for people who want a high quality guitar but may not be able to afford the US instruments, infact, there's plenty people (On here and elsewhere) who own a good few high end US guitars AND SE's. They may well have started as a budget alternative for 'students', 'beginners', 'amateurs, call it what you will, but over the years they have evolved and are just a fine instrument at a price more people can afford. How much do you think SE's would cost if they where made in the US to the same standard?

    Quite simply, you will not find a better guitar at the price many of the SE's go for.

    ....Just someone who thinks VERY carefully about where and what I spend my money on.
    Last edited by Mikegarveyblues; 12-08-2012 at 05:48 PM.
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  12. #12
    Senior Member AP515's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikegarveyblues View Post
    ...there's plenty of people (On here and elsewhere) who own a good few high end US guitars AND SE's. They may well have started as a budget alternative for 'students', 'beginners', 'amateurs, call it what you will, but over the years they have evolved and are just a fine instrument at a price more people can afford.
    I proudly have both, but I didn't get the SE's frst. My first was my most expensive , (Cu24 Artist Package). I picked up the SE's later because I wanted something to take to practices, gigs as a back up, and to play in hotels when I travel, and not have to worry as much about them being damaged or stolen. I am pleased with the SE's. The SE Soapy 2 with P90's played and sounded better then my McSoapy so I sold it and kept the SE.
    1988 CE24, 1995 CE22, 2000 SC, 2003 Standard 22, 2003 Cu24 AP, 2006 Cu24 AP, 2006 SC AP, 2007 CuRo22, 2010 Starla Stoptail, 2010 Mira
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  13. #13
    A♥ hoards guitars A♥ rugerpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bret View Post
    Thanks guys. Good advice. Fast too! I just wish PRS had another option. I've always admired Paul and his work. The whole farm it out to Korea thing seems like a bad move. I'm sure he will make lots of money at it. But come on, anybody can do that. The videos I've seen on SE aren't convincing. I think Paul wants to believe it. But it's pretty obvious his guys don't. It seems all too commercial to me. My notion of being a part of the PRS dream doesn't include selling out for a clone. I think Paul could do better. I think he should do better. I mean which do you prefer, Paul Reed Smith or Soul-less Corp. (like Fender or Gibson)
    I think I'm gonna wait for a deal on a used good Maryland PRS.
    Thanks though, really.
    Bret
    It is patently obvious that you haven't spent any time playing either guitar. It is also interesting that you don't say what kind of music you want to play, so no one on this forum or any other could possibly steer you in either direction.

    Before you start denigrating any company's products or marketing strategy, maybe you should spend a little time with those products.

    If you are buying a guitar to be part of some "dream", then buy whatever pops into your head when you wake up in the morning. If you are truly looking for a new guitar the works for you, you're gonna have to put in some real evaluation time yourself.

    Is it really cold and damp under the bridge in Trollville? Not a good environment for a guitar anyway....
    Last edited by rugerpc; 12-08-2012 at 06:52 PM.
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  14. #14
    Senior Member sleary's Avatar
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    Save up, go buy a USA Prs and save the narrow mindness.

    Want a Fender, go buy a Fender. Want a Gibson, go buy a Gibson.

    OR..

    Go out grab what sings to you, play it and take it home. I myself will not buy what other.people say I should buy. It's my money and I play what works for me.

    By the way. Prs over see the Se line so tightly that it might as well be a USA Prs. Like Paul said before, you should be able to take it out of the box and play it.

    Just my two cents

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    Quote Originally Posted by andy474x View Post
    For example, the SE line blows away any sub-$1K Gibson I've tried.
    and MOST sub $2000 gibsons.. My Barber had a nice Amaerican strat priced in the $1500 range and the fret started curling on the ends etc. The techs said they could fix that but on a quality guitar ( supposed to be) that should not happen. He has several guitars in the same room and climate even acoustic with no issues. Just confirms another reason I don`t like strats. Although a friend of mine has a Taco-caster( strat) and still feels and plays great after over 10 years! So go figure.

    My boy has a PRS SE245 amd t blows away the Gibson Studio I had in ever way.
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  16. #16
    Administrator james's Avatar
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    I vote buy both!

    Lotta guys that build guitars in Maryland all day that own and love their SE guitars. I still have my first PRS...a SE Soapbar. Great guitars. Still want a SE Korina One

  17. #17
    Junior Member Bret's Avatar
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    Dang. You guys are passionate for SE line. (Where should a troll go to buy one?)
    Iv'e read the sale literature. Just figured it was smoke. Not all the reviews are as glorious as you guys make it sound.
    Guess I'll have to try one. I said I'm easy.
    By the way, I like Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, Stevie Ray Vaughan, All 3 Kings, J.L. Hooker, Albert Collins, Johnny Lang, Robert Cray, James Gang (Joe Walsh for you youngsters), to name a few.
    I grew up in the seventies and remember some of it.
    Only been playing for 13 months. Have a Yamaha acoustic and a Dot Es-335 clone.
    I'm not singing the blues in hundred dollar shoes, as Buddy Guy says. $709 is enough.
    I just want value for my investment. Sounds like you all feel you have it.
    I'll take your word on it and try to get a closer look at one.
    Thanks.

  18. #18
    Administrator james's Avatar
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    you'll find PRS favored answers here, obviously. go play both. i was shopping for a very inexpensive tele to kick around. read a lot on the internet about them. tried them a few out myself and my opinion on what i wanted changed based on actually playing them.*

    those two guitars are apples and oranges, but go see how they feel in your hands. one may speak to you more than the other.


    *meant to add: i get to play PRS all day. It's always eye opening when you do visit a store and compare with other brands. I think the common theme with all PRS and SE guitars is that they're real instruments. Some other stuff hanging on the wall feel like toys...and some stuff feels good. Go spend an hour in your local shop. You'll see what I mean.

  19. #19
    Junior Member Bret's Avatar
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    Thanks

  20. #20
    Senior Member Rango's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! View Post
    Threads like this crack me up. There's no linear path to a logical answer because they're different animals altogether. Guitars have a sound and a feel that has to work for you as a player.

    If you would rather have a strat, go buy a strat.

    If you'd rather have an SE, go buy an SE.
    Exactly

    Quote Originally Posted by John Beef View Post
    Strats aren't very good guitars for rock music.
    Really? Did you mean to say that or is that just a typo?
    I'm going to go with typo..... LOL!!!

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