SMG Review: Fender American Standard Stratocaster Electric Guitar

The Redesigned Fender American Standard Stratocaster Electric Guitar!

Originally when it hit the scene, the Stratocaster was released in a 2-color sunburst finish on a solid, deeply contoured ash body, a one-piece maple neck with 21 frets, black dot inlays, and Kluson machine heads, until 1956, when Fender started making bodies made from solid alder.  Also available were a set of custom colors that wasn’t standardized until 1960. These custom colors mostly consisted of automobile lacquer colors made by DuPont and could be had for an extra 5% cost. The single-ply, 8-screw hole white pick guard was a unique concept that allowed mounting all electronic components—except the recessed jack plate—in one easily removed assembly. Subsequent Stratocaster designs (by both Fender and imitators) may or may not have improved on the original in usability and sound, but vintage Fender models are still often worth large amounts of money, and many prefer the timbre of older models.

OFF THE RACK

The Fender American Stratocaster Electric Guitar is the mainstay in the Fender line. The aesthetic upgrades on this model include a richer neck tint for a more elegant appearance, a glossed neck for improved playability and bent steel Fender saddles. String spacing is narrowed for modern playability while the saddle is elongated to reduce string friction and breakage. The Copper Infused Cast Strat® Bridge Block provides improved tone. This Strat features the original headstock shape but has staggered machine heads. Custom staggered pickup magnets improve string balance and give the strings better tone. The neck is faster than most of the Strat models because of the gloss finish and the narrow string settings which give you more speed and accuracy. The body is still a bit heavy but feels comfortable and this isn’t a big deal when playing for long periods of time.

REDESIGNED AMERICAN STANDARD STRAT® BRIDGE

The redesign gives smooth tremolo travel while the block retains the tone of a vintage bridge block. The redesign gives the player access to deeper dives and more stable tuning.

The tone of the American Strat has been sought after for decades. With the redesigned Hot American Single coil pickups you get with this Strat give the classic vintage tone as well as the versatility to create a more modern tone. The pickups sound a bit hotter than standard Strat pickups, personally I think this was a much needed feature.

THE SPECS

  • Solid alder body
  • Modern C-shaped maple neck
  • 22 medium jumbo frets
  • 3 hot American Strat single-coil pickups
  • Delta-tone™ no-load circuit
  • Bent steel Fender saddles
  • Copper Infused Cast Strat® Bridge Block
  • Rosewood or maple fretboard
  • Staggered machine heads
  • Fender SKB hard-shell case, cable, strap, and polishing cloth

THE LOW DOWN

All in all this is a Strat that I can get use to. It has a more playable neck, allowing those with smaller hands to comfortably play a classic axe. As you know, Fender guitars are not always the easiest guitars to play because of their typically fatter necks. The pickups can give you both modern and classic tones, perfect for that bluesy tone most players seek. This axe has a superb clean tone much like Eric Johnson when combined with reverb and some chorus. An excellent combination. I have always been torn in whether or not to purchase a Fender guitar because they are not comfortable in my hands, but I would seriously consider this axe to be added to the collection. It’s a great guitar and I would recommend it to anyone from beginners to the seasoned players alike.

 

Pros: Fast neck, great tone, improved bridge, and better tuning, improved electronics.

Cons: Expensive

Price Range – $999.99 – $1,149.99

Till next week, thanks for reading and keep on shredding!

 

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