"Every day we try to make a better guitar, every day. You're trying to reach for more, trying to do better, not trying to do the same. A lot of companies are trying to do the same, and that's okay - that's their deal. We're trying to stretch that. Our goal is a little more." - Bill Collings

If you're a Collings fan, chances are you've seen, and drooled over, Austin legend Charlie Sexton's spruce-topped SoCo. This guitar gets brought up a lot in our shop due to Charlie's usage, but also because a spruce top is a bit more unusual than the typical maple laminate top we see on the SoCo model. So, what's the deal with the spruce top? What's it add, how does it differ, etc...? Let's take a look.

To start, one thing we've always loved about the SoCo is its Les Paul-meets-ES-335 personality. Physically, it's roughly the size of an ES-335 but with the comfort of the Les Paul single-cut shape (especially when you play it sitting down). Also to be noted is how light-weight it is, especially for a semi-hollow - 7lbs 1oz. Incredible. 

We a/b'd this guitar to a maple Soco and, to our ears, the spruce top coupled w/a mahogany body brings a mellow, vintage-inspired tone to the party. Notes are rounder, with a softer attack, great midrange content...single notes remain articulate, yet meld together in a way that's a bit more full-spectrum than what maple delivers. Maple tends to be punchier and more focused where the spruce tends to be wider and deeper - tone is hard to put into text, but that's how this guitar struck us. 

As to be expected, the build quality, setup, and playability are flawless. The slightly chunky C carve is the ideal semi-hollow shape for this style of guitar (in our minds). Think early 60s 335 with regard to the depth.

Players who love Collings guitars and want something to rival the best vintage semi-hollows, this is your guitar. Priced with hard case by Ameritage.


  • European Spruce top & semi-hollow mahogany body
  • Inset maple center block and mahogany neck
  • Grained ivoroid top/back/neck/peghead binding
  • Black/White top purfling
  • Slim contour F-holes
  • High gloss nitrocellulose lacquer finish
  • Single-bound "Haircut" headstock
  • 22 Frets, neck joins the body at the 16th fret
  • Medium-Fat "C" neck shape
  • 12" Fingerboard radius
  • 1 11/16" Bone nut
  • 24 7/8" Scale length
  • Medium 18% nickel-silver fretwire
  • Fully adjustable truss rod
  • Custom Ivoroid top hat knobs and tuning peg keys
  • Dual Throbak PG102 MXV humbuckers
  • CTS 500K pots and Xicon caps
  • Switchcraft toggle switch and output jack
  • Gotoh Tuners
  • Serial No. SOCO19631
  • 7lbs 1oz

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