Should I get a P-38 or a P-44?

A general musical discussion that doesn't fall under other categories.
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Should I get a P-38 or a P-44?

Post by LemonEar »

Parker Guitars came on my radar after I smashed my hand in a car accident, because of their rep for ease of playability. I’m finally ready to buy one, and I have the possibility of a used P38 or a P44, both Korean made. I'm looking for some recommendations (based on build quality, etc, AND purely personal preference.) Here are the basic details:

The P44 SN is 0512XXXX, which seems to be from December 2005 based on what I see on this site. Seller says they're the 2nd owner, bought it from an LA session musician, no mods, original split coil stinger pickups, original vibrato arm, original heavy duty gig bag, 3-way switch, push/pull pot for coil splitting. They have used the stereo cable to send the magnetic pups and piezo to separate amps, so that seems operational.

The P38 SN is P1200XXX, so from December 2000. Has original humbucker in the bridge position, replaced the center and neck with GFS hot rails. No vibrato arm, nice Gator case.

HERE'S THE REAL QUESTION: Which do people think will give me more flexibility for tones and types of sounds? I’m kind of a “tone-noob,” having mostly used my guitar to hammer out song ideas. I’m familiar with the sounds a Strat-SSS layout can get, but have never used an HSS. With the coil splits on the P44, it seems like that are 6 pickup combinations, as opposed to 5 on the P38 (each P44 pup has 2 on its own, then the middle position with both as humbuckers and both coil split = 6.) I’m hoping to play out more, doing live looping as well as solo playing. One plan is to use the stereo output and send the piezo and magnetic pickups out separately so I can switch between acoustic and electric sounds, especially for the looping songs.

What gives me more tone flexibility using the magnetic pickups - the P38 or the P44? Is there anythings else I should think about when deciding between the two? If you were looking for that "one guitar" you would use to play live, to cover as many bases as possible, which would you get?
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Re: Should I get a P-38 or a P-44?

Post by mmmguitar »

Welcome, @LemonEar. The P series guitars are essentially Fly-shaped Strats that are gateway drugs to NiteFlys and Flys. I suggest going with whichever guitar is cheaper or a lighter weight - You can always swap pickups in or out as your preferences change and, if you decide you dig the guitar’s style, you may find yourself reselling it toward buying one of the carbon-necked Parkers.
Summary of the current Parker Guitars market:
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