I’ve been using 2×4′s for fine woodwork forty years. To be fair, they were better back when I started (e.g., tighter grain and actual fir). Back in the day, lumber yard guys told me I couldn’t use lumber for picture frames and such. However, my picture frames, some nearly six feet tall (with tunnel cuts) are still doing fine, over thirty years later.
For the heck of it, I’ll start a new post with a couple examples. Keep in mind, I only use the light ones (low moisture content).
All that said, yep, I’ve split a few 2×4′s into 2×2′s, for construction use, that proved the need for splitters. Others went the other way and tried to spit themselves apart.