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Squier (son of Fender) electric guitars
#1
I have heard very mixed things about Fender's lower-priced Squier guitars, though most people seem to think that quality has improved in the past few years. Thoughts? Jules? Anyone?

I've been thinking about selling my Artcore and getting something with a little more twang, so a Tele-style or the Strat-Tele hybrid "Vintage '51" model look interesting. Some big sales going on right now ...
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Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#2
I'm very happy with my Squier Affinity Tele - the stock standard sound is very good, and I'm sure if you change the pickups you'd have a monster. My only gripes are (I'm not sure if it's just my particular unit, or whether's it's a reflection on the whole series) - the top two strings sound very thin and weak (perhaps I need heavier strings / better pickups) and I've got a bit of fret buzz (should have checked it more thorougly before I bought it).

Just a side point - when I was shopping with my brother in law recently - I found the prices of the squier affinity tele and the squier standard tele (next model up) to be very close - around $30 difference - for the little bit extra you get a rosewood fingerboard, string through bridge and slightly better components here and there...

I've heard good things on harmony central about the Squier '51 - although they haven't had any in stock so I haven't been able to try any out...
#3
Oh by the way, my brother in law ended up getting a squier vintage modified series tele custom, which is an interesting little beast... Nice slim fretboard of the tele, so very easy to play, but fitted with twin humbuckers which produces a sweet warm sound like a les paul. I still like the bite and twang of a true tele, but it was quite different indeed.
#4
Even within a given range, not all guitars are made equal. A colleague of mine recently related to me of how his friend played a Squier Strat (made in Japan) recently that sounded much better than many standard Fender Strats he'd played in stores.

I suppose if we had the time we could spend days in music stores trying out every single guitar there before we made our decision to buy....

But I think Squiers are well made for the price. I think the electronics are a let down, but the basic body/fret work is good, and more so if you get it properly set up. If you're after a Strat-style body, it's also worth considering the Yamaha Pacifica series. While a little more pricey, I've heard they're quite good too.
God has placed me on earth to accomplish certain things.
Right now, I am so far behind that I will never die.
#5
Thanks for the thoughts.

Yes, the Yamaha Pacificas are very highly recommended ... in the US their low-end Strat bodies are comparable in price to the Squiers, but their Tele bodies seem more expensive.

I found THIS SITE which features clips of a stock '51 played through a Vox amp. I am convinced! And I ordered one! Shhh - don't tell my wife! I'll be doing dishes for the rest of my life. :o

Screaming good deal - US$119 with two Fender gig bags and free shipping. That is dirt cheap! It's the money I saved from not buying more expensive data recovery software. Big Grin

I had considered changing the Artcore's pickups to P90s, but it would probably cost more than the '51 to buy them and have them installed.

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Jules - you might try heavier strings, as I think Squiers have 9s on them. Going up to 9.5s or 10s might give a better tone and less buzz. Or, even better, you could have it set up properly at a shop. I ordered a couple sets of D'addario 9.5s as I find 9s a bit sloppy (especially now that I've got 11s on the Artcore.)
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Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#6
Aaah you got a '51! I'm jealous! Big Grin What colour? Blonde?

I'll definitely try heavier strings, once I break my current ones (shouldn't be long now!!) Big Grin Big Grin
#7
I was thinking about the blonde, as I've heard some people say it's that nice peanut-buttery classic Fender color, and other say it's an ugly yellow. I know the one that I played at Guitar Center was the ugly yellow - almost had a sickly greenish tint. I was afraid to touch it without a tetanus shot.

I got shiny black, which I think looks great against the maple fretboard. Maybe one day I will put a white pearl pickguard on it ...
_______________________________________
Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#8
Aaaaahhhhh.... You guys are not helping me suppress my GAS... Big Grin

Hey slej - just curious - did you get one or two guitars? I just read your second post that said that the guitar came with TWO gig bags? What gives?

Unless the second bag is for..... the 'future'.... I mean you never know when you might need it right? *wink-wink* Big Grin
God has placed me on earth to accomplish certain things.
Right now, I am so far behind that I will never die.
#9
It's one guitar but for whatever reason, they are giving away two gig bags with it (in addition to the reduced price and free shipping.) One is a Fender strat gigbag (as this is a strat body guitar) and the other is a "Fender Deluxe" gigbag, which is better padded and has more pockets, I think.

You know, if you figure that the gig bags retail for US$20 and $30 respectively, then the guitar cost me only $70, brand new!!!
_______________________________________
Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#10
GAS GAS GAS GAS
I've decided to go DIGITAL.

Looking at the Line6 POD XT Live and Variax 700... mmm GAS GAS GAS GAS
#11
$70 for a new axe - I'd say you came out on top this time slej!

Nooo... Adam... go analog... aaaaanaaaaaloooooog...... Big Grin
God has placed me on earth to accomplish certain things.
Right now, I am so far behind that I will never die.
#12
but the temptation of simulating many amps and guitars, rather than just having one, or many! oooooo *dreams* I'll wait till I try it out at the music shop and see whether worth or not,
at the moment, just basing everything on reviews and marketing material Tongue haha
#13
I played a Squier Tele when they first came out. Mine was Japanese made and a very good value for the sound and build quality. The last one I picked up was a mexican made and the quality had severly gone down hill. Even my American Standard Tele leaves a bit to be desired. I had a 67 Tele that sounded amazing stock. With any of the newer Teles I'm always taking out stock pickups for Seymour Duncans.
The best Tele style guitar I ever owned and regret getting rid of was a G&L Asat made by Leo Fender. Now that was quality. comparble in the photography world to owning a Canon 400 F2.8L IS.
Canon 20D
24-70L 2.8
580EX
#14
Adam, I understand what you're saying because that's the exact road I've been going down these past 3-4 years. And I agree with you totally - the beauty of these digital units is that you can sample what it's like to have a roomful of high end equipment for a fraction of the cost. I don't regret ever having gone down the digital path because it helped me try out and finally decide what I really wanted after years of playing.

Aaaahhh... G&L... now you're talking guitarman! So what's that Tele you're playing in your avatar? Tell us a story mate....
God has placed me on earth to accomplish certain things.
Right now, I am so far behind that I will never die.
#15
de_axeman Wrote:Adam, I understand what you're saying because that's the exact road I've been going down these past 3-4 years. And I agree with you totally - the beauty of these digital units is that you can sample what it's like to have a roomful of high end equipment for a fraction of the cost. I don't regret ever having gone down the digital path because it helped me try out and finally decide what I really wanted after years of playing.

Aaaahhh... G&L... now you're talking guitarman! So what's that Tele you're playing in your avatar? Tell us a story mate....


No story really. Its a 2 year old American Standard. I've put a Brent Mason signature Seymour Duncan in the bridge pickup position. I have sold and bought more Teles than I care to remember, half of which I could get back. Ah the crazy things you do on the road..
Since my Tele is a white cream color it would be a perfect base color for a mural. I wouldn't really worry about ruining it as its not a vintage guitar. But I would certainly want someone professional to do it.
Canon 20D
24-70L 2.8
580EX
#16
de_axeman Wrote:Adam, I understand what you're saying because that's the exact road I've been going down these past 3-4 years. And I agree with you totally - the beauty of these digital units is that you can sample what it's like to have a roomful of high end equipment for a fraction of the cost. I don't regret ever having gone down the digital path because it helped me try out and finally decide what I really wanted after years of playing.

Aaaahhh... G&L... now you're talking guitarman! So what's that Tele you're playing in your avatar? Tell us a story mate....

So purchasing the simulating equipment won't be the last of my purchases, but will make me want more, to want the REAL THING. oh no!

When I bought my 300D with kit lens, I thought that's all I'll ever need, but no....!
haha
#17
Adam, take a look at the Vox AD- series amps. They have a small tube to get that nice warm analog tone, but the guts is a digital modeler. Best of both worlds.
_______________________________________
Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#18
A brief follow-up: the guitar arrived yesterday. It needed quite a bit of work to get it playable, and the overall manufacturing quality is suspect - but what do you expect for this price?

Most important, it sounds INCREDIBLY GOOD. I am playing it clean through the Fender Acoustasonic and I can't put it down. It chimes like a Strat and twangs like a Tele - at the same time! Okay, it doesn't have the sparkle of a MIA Fender, but it's surprisingly good.

Now I really really need a tube amp! Cool
_______________________________________
Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#19
Hey great stuff!

What did you mean by "needed uqite a bit of work to get it playable"?

You haven't already ditched the pickups, have you?
#20
LOL; no, the stock pickups aren't half bad.

It needed:
- A truss rod adjustment (neck was bowed even though the strings were slack)
- All screws tightened - even the neck plate was loose
- Action lowered - low E was 5/32" at the 12th fret
- Intonation adjusted
- A few of the saddle height adjustment screws were loose and would rattle when a string was played - this was taken care of with the action and intonation adjustments
- Ends of the frets stuck out past the edge of the fretboard and were sharp - I sanded these down

Nothing major, but about 1-1/2 hours work to get it playable.

It still needs: frets polished (there's visible gunk on them!) and the strings replaced (I can see gaps in the winding!). I'll wait until one of these strings breaks and then do both.

Maybe one day I'll make some small mods: I'd put on better tuners and a cream pearloid pickguard. Cool

This guitar really makes me appreciate the quality of my Ibanez Artcore. That needed a basic set up too, but it is exceptionally well made in comparison to the Squier.

But except for the above mentioned items, the '51 sounds great and is very easy to play.
_______________________________________
Everybody got to elevate from the norm!
#21
slejhamer Wrote:A brief follow-up: the guitar arrived yesterday. It needed quite a bit of work to get it playable, and the overall manufacturing quality is suspect - but what do you expect for this price?

Most important, it sounds INCREDIBLY GOOD. I am playing it clean through the Fender Acoustasonic and I can't put it down. It chimes like a Strat and twangs like a Tele - at the same time! Okay, it doesn't have the sparkle of a MIA Fender, but it's surprisingly good.

Now I really really need a tube amp! Cool

GAS leading to more GAS... Congrats on your acquisition slej!
God has placed me on earth to accomplish certain things.
Right now, I am so far behind that I will never die.
#22
I saw a '51 in a shop down the road from work the other day... now to convince myself NOT to walk in, lest I walk out with one in hand... Big Grin
#23
slejhamer Wrote:Adam, take a look at the Vox AD- series amps. They have a small tube to get that nice warm analog tone, but the guts is a digital modeler. Best of both worlds.
Ah! these are very nice too!

GAS leads to more GAS which leads to more.
It applies to everything, like camera stuff (if you hang around forums which talk too much about gear) hehe
#24
Excellent! The sound of escaping GAS; music to my ears gentlemen...!
All my stuff is here: www.doverow.com
(Just click on the TOP RIGHT buttons to take you to my Image Galleries or Music Rooms!)
My band TRASHVILLE, in which I'm lead guitarist: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6mU6qaNx08
#25
Lol... GAS GAS GAS
http://www.harmony-central.com/Guitar/Ar...iding_GAS/
  


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