PRS revives the Sonzera 20 combo with updated voicing and construction

PRS Sonzera 20 combo guitar amp
(Image credit: PRS Guitars)

Along with a host of new electric guitars for 2023 – among them four fresh SE models, artist signatures and 10th Anniversary S2 guitars – PRS has revealed an old favorite is returning to its guitar amp stable, as the briefly discontinued Sonzera 20 combo sees the light of day once more.

Launched back at NAMM 2017 as a 20-watt combo and 50-watt head and combo, the Sonzera – Portuguese slang for a cool and/or stunning sound, don’tcha know – was notable for utilizing Chinese construction to bring the price of PRS amps down, and paved the way for later affordable successes, such as Mark Tremonti’s giant-crushing MT 15.

Only the 20-watt combo is making a reappearance here, but retains its Twin-inspired tonal approach, which makes it ideal as a pedal platform – the voicing has been “refined” for the new version, too.

Two independently controlled, footswitchable channels are onboard, while the gain channel can be set as a boosted clean, ranging to heavy distortion.

Other features include a bright switch, spring reverb, effects loop and refined aesthetics – we dig the silver gray grille cloth, which offers an additional tip of the hat to the amp’s inspiration.

“I am very happy to re-release the new Sonzera 20 combo with improved construction techniques, refined voicing, and fresh cosmetics,” says PRS amp designer Doug Sewell.

“Their design inspiration draws from the purity and tonal beauty of vintage American reverb amps of the ’60s. The two-channel design is currently unique to the PRS lineup in that the Gain channel is simply the Clean channel with additional gain stages and its own tone stack inserted for discreet lead voicing control.”

Guitar World’s Chris Gill heaped praise upon the original Sonzera , noting it had “the best sounding spring reverb I’ve heard since the Twin Reverb, and it may actually be even better than that”, concluding “when it comes to versatility and value, the Sonzera 20 Combo truly delivers with a full complement of features that all perform exceptionally well.” Hopes are high for the followup, then.

The Sonzera 20 is available to preorder now for $999 – see PRS Guitars for more info.

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Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism from Cardiff University, and over a decade's experience writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as 20 years of recording and live experience in original and function bands. During his career, he has interviewed the likes of John Frusciante, Chris Cornell, Tom Morello, Matt Bellamy, Kirk Hammett, Jerry Cantrell, Joe Satriani, Tom DeLonge, Ed O'Brien, Polyphia, Tosin Abasi, Yvette Young and many more. In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.