#172421  by Jon S.
 
lbpesq wrote: Tue Jan 25, 2022 3:07 pm Personally, I don't see much "evolution". Am I missing something?
I accept that nothing more I can say here will make a difference on this issue. But since I'm a glutton for punishments, what the heck! :D

One approach is reductionistic and speculative: break whatever it is into its individual components and speculate from there how the end result will feel and sound.

An alternative approach is systemic and experiential: personally experience the synergism and totality of the components as a system.

Let's resume this discussion after we've been able to get our hands on the new guitar, plug it in, and actually play it.
 #172424  by Chocol8
 
There are a TON of variations of “Stratocaster” and while the differences may seem small, they can be significant to both how it plays and how it sounds.

The Silver Sky is a blend of 1963 vintage Strat with some modern twists, plus PRS manufacturing. It is definitely different than any Fender Strat I have played, but still somewhat familiar to a Strat guy.

It’s not a guitar I personally fell in love with, but I can see why others might prefer it to a higher end Fender.
 #172426  by Jon S.
 
My friend on The Gear Page, Vaughn, says the tone is close enough to an actual ‘64 to fool folks in a blind test.

EDIT: Here are some of Vaughn's posts on the guitar:

The thing about the Silver Sky is that Paul Smith & John Mayer wanted to come up with guitar that came as close as possible to Mayer's 63/64 Strat in sound & feel. So, besides the cosmetic differences, the Silver Sky has a particular voice that some may not care for.

My favorite Strat of all time was an original '64 I once owned and the Silver Sky is the closest to it I've heard off the racks, including many Fenders, etc... However, if I wanted that modern, glassy, quacky Strat sound, I wouldn't buy the Silver Sky.

But we all hear it different, and that's ok too!

================================

Well, one thing you have to keep in mind is that the target sound & feel for the Silver Sky is 63/64 era Fender. And, after playing many vintage Fenders, no modern Fender I tried sufficiently satisfied me for that sound & feel. So after running many racks of Fenders, etc. over a few years for something better than my tweaked MIM Strat, I bought the Silver Sky.

Yup, modern Fenders sound & feel different than mid 60's Strats & the Silver Sky...and you may not like that particular Strat voice. But that doesn't make it a bad "Strat". Buy what your ears & hands like...which is what I did;)! My hands & ears don't care who's name is on the headstock!

================================

Yup, due to time we are sort of programmed to a "strat" looking a certain way. But as many variations of Strats as Fender has, they missed the niche that Mayer (and some of us) wanted in a Strat so he didn't have to take his vintage Strat on the road. The Silver Sky updates didn't mean much to me personally but the target sound/feel are right. But, yeah, its too bad Fender wouldn't make the guitar for Mayer as the traditional look may have sold even more guitars than the Silver Sky. But, then again, it might have been difficult for Fender to build a Mayer production guitar, with PRS quality standard, at the Silver Sky price point. PRS took the opportunity and it looks like they're making a decent profit on the Silver Sky...but Fender does have more mouths to feed;).
 #172431  by lbpesq
 
Like I said before, Mayer and Smith got together and designed a Fender Stratocaster. This thread has at different times described the Silver Sky as a modern revised take on the Strat, or as a recreation of a 63/64 Strat. So which is it? And what, specifically, are the “modern twists” I keep hearing about, other than replacing metal tuner knobs with plastic ones?

Bill, tgo
 #172433  by Jon S.
 
The answer to your question is the sound of one hand clapping.

Seriously and with all respect, even the wisest and most experienced guitarist (which for sure ain't me!) cannot provide the answers here.

We must find them for ourselves, not through discourse but via personal experience.

Not to worry - when I finally get my paws on one, I'll post here again. :musicsmile:
 #172437  by lbpesq
 
Sorry, that doesn’t work for me. Guitars are physical objects made from materials, designed and assembled. They are not mystical spiritual ephemeral beasts galavanting in the Twilight Zone showing appreciation with one appendage. Advances in design can be described. Things like compound necks, noiseless pick-ups, self-tuning bridges, dual adjustable truss rods, were advances in the instrument's evolution. And we were able to read about these advances, they weren’t hidden for each of us to discover them ourselves.

Mayer describing the SS as something new and specifically as not recreating the 60s station wagon, and alternatively describing it as a recreation of a 63/64 Strat, just doesn‘t make sense to me. Neither does the idea that it is truly an evolutionary guitar, but no one can tell me why it’s evolutionary.

Without having actually played one, but based on my experience with the three PRS guitars I have owned, I have no doubt that the SS is a high quality impeccably built instrument. I would expect the build quality to surpass Fender’s. But I don’t see the evolution, just a really good Strat with a PRS head-stock.

Bill, tgo
NSP liked this
 #172439  by Chocol8
 
lbpesq wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 5:25 pm And what, specifically, are the “modern twists” I keep hearing about, other than replacing metal tuner knobs with plastic ones?
The body shape and carve, the headstock shape, angle and 3+3 alignment, the fretboard radius, and neck profile are all different than a 63/64 Strat, or any Strat for that matter.

The pickups are the biggest nod to 63/64, with three identical pickups (I believe RWRP for the middle though) vs the hotter bridge that Fender has been mostly using for decades now.
Jon S. liked this
 #172597  by gdrfk1990
 
So I am looking at factory guitars in this price range.. The Fender player series looks very similar except for the MIM fender seems to have better tone woods Alder. Some even have a cherry top... Am I correct ? any other suggestions on guitars to look at ?
 #172598  by jalevinemd
 
These PRS SE guitars are wonderful instruments and one of the best values out there. I can't speak for the SS. I've got a Tremonti and a 245. The finish and fretwork are immaculate. The nuts are rather cheap looking and feeling, but that's a very inexpensive fix. The pickups sound wonderful. Had they existed 15 years ago, I never would've shelled out over $2000 more for my Custom 24. Honestly, you'd be hard pressed to find a better sub $1000 guitar on the market.
 #172599  by PurpleTrails
 
gdrfk1990 wrote:So I am looking at factory guitars in this price range.. The Fender player series looks very similar except for the MIM fender seems to have better tone woods Alder. Some even have a cherry top... Am I correct ? any other suggestions on guitars to look at ?
Maybe a Sire Larry Carlton S7. They've been getting a lot of youtube love, but good luck finding one to actually pick up and play. They're available to order in the US via Sweetwater, but I'm not sure there's another outlet here. Big attraction is the quality of the roasted maple neck, at a $599 price point.
 #172610  by gdrfk1990
 
Code: Select all
[quote]These PRS SE guitars are wonderful instruments and one of the best values out there. I can't speak for the SS. I've got a Tremonti and a 245. The finish and fretwork are immaculate. The nuts are rather cheap looking and feeling, but that's a very inexpensive fix. The pickups sound wonderful. Had they existed 15 years ago, I never would've shelled out over $2000 more for my Custom 24. Honestly, you'd be hard pressed to find a better sub $1000 guitar on the market[/quote]
I did a little research and this is what I am finding. If you want a quality guitar in this range out of the box the SS SE is the way to go...
If you are looking to mod the player might be a better platform. From what I have seen on Youtube The PRS has :

Better Pickups
Better fit and finish Fret work
Better neck cut and a 8.5 radius (this is subjective I know)
Poplar is not a terrible tone wood it's just ugly and was used by fender for several models American and Mexican
Comes with a gig bag
 #172611  by Jon S.
 
Poplar often retains greenish streaks even when properly dried so when it’s used the guitars almost always have opaque finishes.

Opinions vary on it as a tonewood. I have no personal experience with this so I can’t opine on it. I can say that opinions vary equally widely re: basswood and I’ve played some great sounding basswood guitars.

If our forests in the 50s had been like they are today, Leo “Mr. Practical” Fender might well have selected basswood and poplar and today people would be criticizing alder and ash.

Also, all wood types have tremendous internal-to-the-species variation so the poplar body on one guitar could have quite different properties than the one on the other (this, alone, may explain the variation in opinions on the part of folks whose poplar guitar sample sizes are small to one).
 #172619  by Darkstar860
 
I like PRS guitars a lot, I use to own a few US made and I owned one SE. All of them were awesome guitars. The SE was built and played better than most guitars in that price range. Im interested in trying one of these Silver Sky guitars out (SE or US made), but I wouldnt buy one. For my strat needs i use G&L guitars and i have not found a reason to change that and its been 25 years of using G&L guitars (For Strat and Tele needs).

-Walt B