First off, I'd like to say that my SC245 is a phenomenal guitar, absolutely full of tone, fabulous looking, etc. I'll bet it'd sound great with any bridge. But I think the 2 piece brings out the best in this design.
I know, you're thinking that since every guitar sounds a little bit different from the next one in the line, how do you attribute the difference in tone to this bridge design? To answer, I'll set my personal Wayback Machine to 1971...
Back then, I was primarily a keyboard player in college bands (yes, I'm freaking old). But I doubled on guitar, and my axe was an uninspiring sounding SG Special with a wrap tailpiece. It had been my brother's guitar, and I wasn't going to buy a new guitar, my money went into my keyboard rig. Still, I wanted the instrument to sound better. I wasn't unhappy with the pickups, it was the basic tone of the thing that kind of bothered me. It seemed...not very distinctive, insert "meh" adjective here, etc.
The bass player in our band was also a very fine guitar player, and he'd gotten a new Les Paul Custom, one of the black ones. I absolutely loved the sound of that thing. But he was working and I was still in school. I couldn't remotely afford an LP.
So I went to the repair shop that had the big reputation in town, and brought the SG Special along. I asked the guy, who was about my age, "Is there anything I can do to make this thing sound really good?" And I told him I loved my friend's LP.
He looked the guitar over, and strummed it, played for a few minutes, and said, "The best thing you can do for this guitar is replace this bridge with a Tune-O-Matic 2 piece. But it'll result in some holes I'll have to fill with dowel rods, and unless you want to refinish it, it won't be pretty."
How many of us have swapped a wrap tailpiece for a 2 piece bridge on the a guitar that you're very, very familiar with in terms of tone, and changed nothing else, no tuner swap, no pickup swap, no refinish? In other words, the different tailpiece installation was the only variable.
Well, I'm that guy. I wanted to find out the difference.
"Do it," I said.
"Do you want me to refinish it?"
"Nah, I don't care how it looks. I want it to sound good." Hey, I didn't have the money for a refin anyway. So the only change made to the guitar was the installation of the 2-piece bridge. Everything else was the same.
It was a good test to hear the impact of a different bridge, though I didn't realize it at the time. And I'll cut to the chase:
The tone changed considerably, it became very different (in a good way) indeed, and I while it's difficult to put the difference between a 1-piece wrap and a 2-piece into words, I certainly know it when I hear it. In fact, the guitar is still in my family, here's a shot of it, the 1971 mods are still the only changes to the guitar, even the pickups and frets are original:
For the next 20 years this was my main guitar. For most of that time, it was my only guitar. Its sound is ingrained into my brain. I believe that I know what happens when you slap a 2 piece bridge on a guitar. There's a certain "woody" change to the midrange that I really like.
This is my SC245. As you can see, the bridge is different in a lot of design details, but the four attachment points are similar (BTW, it's not quite this honey colored in person):
This guitar has a gorgeous, present, woody tone. I'm absolutely in love with it, and from the first note I played before even plugging it in, I knew that it had that elusive "it factor."
I'm not saying that the PRS 2-piece is somehow a "better" tone than the wrap. It's different, however, and you can hear it. My own preference is borne out in how this one sounds. I've had two very fine PRS SC250s, and in addition to this SC245 a couple others with the 2 piece. To my ear, this design is perfection. I also have to say that string changes are an absolute snap with this tailpiece, but that's another matter, of course!
I love this guitar!