PRS launches major new assault on acoustic guitar market

PRS is mounting a strong challenge to the acoustic guitar market with six new models in its more affordable SE series announced at the NAMM show earlier this year.

The 2018 line up of PRS SE acoustics feature mahogany, ovangkol, and maple back and side woods – all paired with solid Sitka spruce tops – each one offering its own flavour. That flavour is further developed by the guitar’s body shape and bracing style.


PRS offers two acoustic body shapes: Angelus Cutaway and Tonare Grand, meaning “Angel” and “Thunder” respectively. The maker says these shapes provide comfort and a familiar feel for players and are both well suited for playing fingerstyle or with a pick.

2018 SE Acoustics come with either traditional “X” bracing or PRS’s hybrid “X”/Classical bracing. PRS says traditional “X” bracing allows the top to vibrate while providing a stability that gives these instruments their signature punch. PRS Hybrid bracing features the traditional “X” at the soundhole with classical fan bracing across the belly. This allows the top to vibrate more freely for a rounder, more projecting tone. The back bracing on both body shapes is designed to “lock down” the back and sides to promote the instrument’s projection through the top, giving the instruments a unique tonal quality.

2018 acoustic models include the SE AX20E, SE TX20E, SE A40E, SE T40E, SE A50E, and SE T50E.

The SE AX20E and SE TX20E (Angelus and Tonare body shapes, respectively) feature mahogany backs and sides with solid spruce tops for warm, balanced tone. Braced with tradition “X” bracing, ‘These models have a punch that stands alone beautifully or cuts through the mix,’ PRS says.

The SE A40E and SE T40E pair ovangkol back and sides with a solid spruce top for full, lush tone. Braced with PRS hybrid”X”/Classical bracing. ‘These models have a voice projects with breathtaking volume and delicate nuance’.

The SE A50E and T50E marry maple back and sides with a solid spruce top for stunning warmth and depth. Braced with PRS hybrid”X”/Classical bracing. ‘These models have an uncommon 3-dimensional character for guitars with maple backs and sides’.

All the new SE acoustics feature a Fishman GT1 electronics system, featuring an undersaddle pickup and soundhole mounted preamp with easy-to-access volume and tone controls.

Additional high-quality features include solid spruce tops, ebony fretboards and bridges, bone nuts and saddles, as well as PRS trademark bird inlays and headstock design. All 2018 PRS SE acoustics ship with a high-quality hardshell case.