• New Sponsor: ShipNerd, Ship Your Gear with Us... for less! Click Here.

Tried a PRS Silver Sky – underwhelmed

spacevato

Member
Messages
370
I tried said guitar, a gold-colored SS with rosewood fretboard, today in a guitar shop in Norway, where the retail price is 30,000 NOK, almost 3400 USD. That kind of money for a Strat with some tweaks is a lot, and for that price you expect perfection. (I see that the same guitar sells for 2400 USD in Guitar Center in the US.)

Maybe it was just that specimen, but it was not perfect. The maple neck looked like B-grade wood. I've seen plenty of Squiers and Harley Bentons that look way prettier. Inside the trem cavity there was something that looked like blisters. Or maybe the wood hadn't been sanded properly. Not important, but as I said, for that price ... Yeah. The plastic knobs looked cheap, and they were kind of wobbly. Not good.

As for playability, the neck felt huge for a guy like me with normal-sized hands. I understand John Mayer is a big fellow with big hands, so the size makes sense for people like him. The pickups sounded really good. Like good, dynamic Strat pickups. They were not perfectly adjusted, so the neck pickup was quite a bit louder than the bridge, but the tones were good, and the 2 and 4 positions had quack in spades. Holding and playing the guitar, the headstock feels weird as I'm used to regular six-in-line tuners. The guitar kind of feels small.

So, I don't see anything that the Silver Sky does better than a regular US Fender Strat, or even a good, well set up and maybe upgraded Mexican Fender. If I were to blow 2500 to 3500 USD on a US made Strat, there are plenty of options I'd choose before buying a PRS SS. YMMV, of course.

(Edit: Just want to add, for clarification, that I've been playing for 30+ years. I've owned mostly upper midrange guitars, but have played plenty of high-end ones.)
 
Last edited:

Golem

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,525
I've had a lot of strats and I usually prefer moderns specs and yet the Silver Sky is my favorite one. I got mine for something like $1368 USD brand new from Riff City Guitar so at least occasionally deals can be found. It beats the Fender Elite HSS, Lincoln Brewster, American Standards, G&L Commanche, G&L Legacy, and GJ2 Glendora I've either owned or still own.
 

IanRubbish

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
827
I also thought it was much more well made than Fenders in its price range, i just got rid of it because the radius would make it choke with the setup that i prefer. Wobbly knobs are no issue, that is easily fixed if that happens which it did not on mine. The fretwork was better than any Fender ive ever played excluding Custom Shops which have all been perfect. The neck was a great size and carve, so comfortable. The nut work was much better, and the quaility of the tuners and bridge i found to be miles better than any Fender ive ever played. I play a 62’ AVRI and a Jeff Beck which are really great, but if PRS does a 9.5” radius Silver Sky they will both be getting retired.
 

ozraves

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
974
So, I don't see anything that the Silver Sky does better than a regular US Fender Strat, or even a good, well set up and maybe upgraded Mexican Fender.
I have done the upgrade thing to an American Pro Strat to get it into the same ballpark as a Silver Sky and between the cost of boutique pickups, hours of setup time and upgrading the tuners... And probably a PLEK. It is a lot more time and money than you appreciate.

FWIW, Fender could make that guitar but chooses not to so their brand's customers will be forced into more expensive custom shop models.
 
Last edited:

johntoste

Member
Messages
1,545
I generally love PRS guitars and have owned several. My main guitar is a Frankenstrat. When I first heard about the SS, I thought "this is it!...F sound and style with PRS feel."
So I went into a PRS dealership predisposed to like them. But I didn't. They had two and both of them just felt wrong. Didn't like the neck thickness, or radius, or setup (new.)
Best of luck to those of you who like them, but they're not for me.
 

Cheddar Kung Pao

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
3,328
weird to me that you thought the neck was big. It definitely seemed like a medium sized strat neck to me. In the ballpark of my '64 time machine neck.

the neck pickup usually comes off as louder because it has so much more low end than the middle or bridge. To me that's just part of a strat.
 

spacevato

Member
Messages
370
weird to me that you thought the neck was big. It definitely seemed like a medium sized strat neck to me. In the ballpark of my '64 time machine neck.

the neck pickup usually comes off as louder because it has so much more low end than the middle or bridge. To me that's just part of a strat.
I'm used to Fender's modern C neck, 9.5" radius. The neck on the SS feels thick in comparison.
 

spacevato

Member
Messages
370
I also thought it was much more well made than Fenders in its price range, i just got rid of it because the radius would make it choke with the setup that i prefer. Wobbly knobs are no issue, that is easily fixed if that happens which it did not on mine. The fretwork was better than any Fender ive ever played excluding Custom Shops which have all been perfect. The neck was a great size and carve, so comfortable. The nut work was much better, and the quaility of the tuners and bridge i found to be miles better than any Fender ive ever played. I play a 62’ AVRI and a Jeff Beck which are really great, but if PRS does a 9.5” radius Silver Sky they will both be getting retired.
You shouldn't have to fix anything on guitars in that class.
 

BigDoug1053

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
5,091
It's a magical process that determines whether a guitar speaks to you - or not. I have not bonded with several really beautiful guitars over the years - both expensive and lower priced. And my particular bias is paying that much for a bolt-neck guitar...
 

BillyO

Member
Messages
279
The thing I don’t understand about this model is that it does not seem to make any significant attempt to differentiate itself from a Strat

by comparison, a G&L has PTB tone controls, a EBMM has silent circuit so although they are clearly Strat inspired they bring something functionally different to the table

maybe I’m missing something about the finer details here but I don’t understand what is unique about the Silver Sky.
 

Cheddar Kung Pao

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
3,328
I'm used to Fender's modern C neck, 9.5" radius. The neck on the SS feels thick in comparison.
Ahh, see the modern C would be on the thinner side from my perspective, and the SS would be medium. A Fender '50s Strat neck would be on the thicker side.
 

RockDebris

Member
Messages
3,881
The thing I don’t understand about this model is that it does not seem to make any significant attempt to differentiate itself from a Strat

by comparison, a G&L has PTB tone controls, a EBMM has silent circuit so although they are clearly Strat inspired they bring something functionally different to the table

maybe I’m missing something about the finer details here but I don’t understand what is unique about the Silver Sky.
Cosmetics aside, the difference between it and an off-the-shelf Fender Strat have a lot more to do with a certain feel and sound than any fundamental shift away from what makes a strat a strat. It's the things that Mayer likes in his vintage strat with cosmetic updates and modern manufacturing rolled into a PRS. Some PRS and some Fender fans like them when they try them, so they sell. That's all there is to understand, really.
 
Messages
88
It's probably not for everyone. I own a few pre cbs fenders which I really really love. But the silver sky is my favorite to pick up for a quick spin. Love the instant sweet tones and the neck carve. Yes it is a lot of money but nothing crazy compared to a custom shop Strat. And it is top quality, you may not like the design but you can't question the quality. I've owned 3 and played several. No flaws what so ever.
 

JasonE

Member
Messages
233
I am a big PRS fan. The Silver Sky is a guitar that I have looked at many times but just can't get myself to pull the trigger on. I have a custom built Suhr carve top Standard that I love and I also have a Suhr Classic Pro that is a much better Strat than Fender makes. These guitars are pretty much my frequently played Strat solutions.

I have a couple of other Strats from over the years. The SS just seems to be too much duplication for me with what I already have. I also prefer a humbucker pickup in the bridge of my guitars. I only have one Stat that is SSS configuration and I made it that way. It came with a HB in the bridge and I changed out the pickguard and put a set of custom shop fat 50s in it.

I may some day buy one if I get a chance to put my hands on one and play it first. It isn't a guitar I am willing to just buy without a test drive.
 






Trending Topics

Top Bottom