Ultimate Guide To Fender Electric Guitars (Pros and Cons)

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If you are looking for a comprehensive guide to Fender electric guitars, this blog post is for you. You will learn about the history, features, and pros and cons of different models of Fender guitars, such as the Stratocaster, Telecaster,  Jazzmaster, and Acoustic Telecaster. Whether you are a beginner or a seasoned player, you will find useful tips and insights on how to choose and play a Fender electric guitar that suits your style and preferences.

1. Fender American Performer Stratocaster

VERSATILE PERFORMER

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2. Fender Player Stratocaster                             

ENTRY-LEVEL LEGEND

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3. Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS                

VINTAGE-MODERN POWERHOUSE

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4. Fender American Ultra Telecaster                         

INNOVATIVE TELE TONES

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5. Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster

VINTAGE TONAL ELEGANCE

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6. Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster

REVOLUTIONARY HYBRID SOUNDS

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1. Fender American Performer Stratocaster

VERSATILE PERFORMER

Versatile sound, five-way pickup switch.Comfortable neck with jumbo frets.
Timeless, iconic design, various colors.affordable in American Performer Stratocaster
Picture by Fender

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Picture by Alesis

PROS

  • Hello! Thank you for taking the time to read our in-depth analysis on the pros and cons of Fender Electric Guitars in our comprehensive guide. Today, we want to shed some light on the highly sought-after American Performer Stratocaster, one of Fender’s most popular models. Regardless of your preferred genre, be it rock, blues, jazz, or anything in between, this guitar offers a multitude of features that make it an excellent choice for any guitarist. Here are four key benefits of the American Performer Stratocaster, all condensed into a concise 250 words:

    Firstly, its versatility in sound is unrivaled. Equipped with three powerful Yosemite™ single-coil pickups, this guitar emits a rich and expressive tone. Manipulating the five-way selector switch allows you to seamlessly transition between various pickup combinations, opening up a vast spectrum of sonic possibilities. Whether you crave a bright and twangy sound or prefer a warm and smooth tone, the American Performer Stratocaster rises to the occasion.

    Secondly, it boasts an ergonomic design, specifically the “Modern C” neck profile. This not only ensures effortless playability but also creates a comfortable grip in your hand. The neck, crafted from maple and finished with a sleek satin touch, offers a responsive and speedy experience. Moreover, the rosewood or maple fingerboard, equipped with 22 jumbo frets, guarantees impeccable intonation and sustains each note with brilliance.

    Thirdly, its timeless appearance is unparalleled. The American Performer Stratocaster exudes iconic beauty and is an instantly recognizable Fender creation. Constructed with either alder or ash, the body’s glossy finish magnificently showcases the natural wood grain. To top it off, the guitar comes in a variety of captivating colors, including satin versions of classics like Sonic Blue and Surf Green, as well as new hues like Penny and Aubergine. The addition of a vintage-style synchronized tremolo bridge provides further versatility, offering vibrant vibrato effects throughout your playing.

    Lastly, its affordability is a standout feature. While being a member of Fender’s prestigious American series, the American Performer Stratocaster remains incredibly reasonable in price. For approximately $1,200, you not only receive a high-quality guitar crafted in the USA with premium materials and components but also a deluxe gig bag that ensures protection against dust and potential damage.

    These are just a glimpse of the many advantages that the American Performer Stratocaster possesses. If you seek a guitar capable of meeting all your needs, we highly recommend you visit your local Fender dealer or browse online to explore the wonders of the American Performer Stratocaster.

CONS

  • The Fender American Performer Stratocaster is an exceptional guitar that caters to various styles and skill levels, presenting numerous features and advantages. Nevertheless, like any instrument, it possesses a few downsides worth noting before making a purchase. Here are two cons of the Fender American Performer Stratocaster:

    1. The gigbag’s quality is lacking. Despite including a gigbag, it lacks sturdiness and protection. Comprised of thin nylon material, it lacks adequate cushioning or padding. Frequent travelers may want to consider investing in a superior case to safeguard their instrument against impact, scratches, and moisture.

    2. The vintage bent-steel saddles may not suit everyone. While the Fender American Performer Stratocaster boasts vintage-style bent-steel saddles intended for improved sustain and resonance, some players may deem them uncomfortable or challenging to adjust. Moreover, incorrectly set up or maintained saddles can lead to string breakages. If a more contemporary or stable bridge system is preferable, exploring alternate models or modifying the bridge may be necessary.

2. Fender Player Stratocaster

ENTRY-LEVEL LEGEND

Upgraded pickups, noiseless, 3x.Comfortable and versatile neck shape.
Sleek and ergonomic body shape.Seven color options.
Picture by Fender

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

PROS

    • If you are in the market for a Fender electric guitar that offers excellent value, sound quality, and playability, then the Fender Player Stratocaster is definitely worth considering. This particular guitar belongs to the Player series, which is Fender’s entry-level range of instruments that are manufactured in Mexico. However, don’t be deceived by the “entry-level” label because the Player Stratocaster is actually a high-quality guitar that can easily match up against more expensive models. Here are four key benefits of the Fender Player Stratocaster:

      1. Improved Pickups: The Player Stratocaster boasts upgraded pickups when compared to its predecessor, the Standard series. Equipped with three single-coil pickups featuring Alnico 5 magnets, this guitar produces a bright, clear, and dynamic tone. Moreover, these noiseless pickups ensure that no unwanted hum or buzz interrupts your playing experience.

      2. Versatile and Comfortable Neck: The Player Stratocaster boasts a modern C-shaped neck with a 9.5-inch radius fretboard and 22 medium-jumbo frets. This neck design is ideal for most players as it enables easy bending, chording, and soloing. The satin finish on the back of the neck enhances comfort by providing a smooth feel for your hand.

      3. Sleek and Ergonomic Body: Crafted with an alder body and a glossy polyester finish, the Player Stratocaster features hand-rounded contours that are both classic and iconic. Additionally, this guitar possesses a comfortable and lightweight body shape. The two-point vibrato bridge allows for smooth and stable whammy bar action.

      4. Wide Range of Color Options: The Player Stratocaster arrives in seven different colors: Three-Color Sunburst, Black, Buttercream, Polar White, Sage Green Metallic, Sonic Red, and Tidepool. Additionally, you have the choice between a maple or pau ferro fretboard, depending on your personal preference.

      The Fender Player Stratocaster is a guitar that delivers exceptional playability and undeniable style. It is an excellent option for beginners and intermediate players who desire an authentic Fender experience without breaking the bank.

CONS

  • The Fender Player Stratocaster is a great guitar, but has drawbacks to consider.
  • Firstly, the nut corners can be sharp, causing discomfort or cutting fingers. However, this issue can be resolved by sanding or filing.
  • Secondly, it does not include a gig bag or case, requiring a separate purchase for protection during transport. Despite these cons, the guitar boasts upgraded pickups, a versatile neck shape, and a wide range of colors. The Fender Player Stratocaster offers authentic Fender sound and vibe at an affordable price, making it a worthwhile option for those seeking a versatile electric guitar.

3. Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS

VINTAGE-MODERN POWERHOUSE

HSS configuration: versatile tonal options.Ultra Noiseless pickups eliminate interference.
Comfortable and ergonomic neck profile.locking tuners and tremolo system
Picture by Fender

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

PROS

  • If you are searching for a versatile and high-performance electric guitar, the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS deserves serious consideration. As a member of Fender’s most advanced line of guitars and basses, the American Ultra series, this model offers several notable pros:

    1. The HSS configuration provides a humbucker pickup in the bridge position and two single-coil pickups in the middle and neck positions. With this setup, you can explore a broad range of tonal options, spanning from warm and smooth to bright and crunchy. Additionally, the S-1 switch allows you to split the humbucker into a single-coil, further expanding your sonic palette.

    2. The Ultra Noiseless pickups are specifically designed to deliver the classic Fender sound while eliminating the unwanted hum and noise typically associated with single-coil pickups. Relish in the clarity and pristine tone without any annoying interferences.

    3. The Modern “D” neck profile ensures optimal comfort and ergonomics. Its smooth satin finish and rolled fingerboard edges enhance playability, while the compound radius facilitates easy bending and fast playing. You’ll find that navigating the fretboard is effortless with this design.

    4. The locking tuners and tremolo system add immense value by keeping the guitar in tune and maintaining stability. Whether you frequently use the whammy bar or change strings, the locking tuners prevent strings from slipping or stretching. Moreover, the tremolo system’s two-point pivot design minimizes friction and improves tuning stability.

    These are just a few of the advantages offered by the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS. To gather more information about this guitar and other Fender models, we recommend checking out our comprehensive guide, the Ultimate Guide To Fender Electric Guitars (Pros and Cons).

CONS

  • The Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS is a high-end electric guitar that boasts various features and tones for today’s musicians. However, before purchasing one, it’s important to consider a few drawbacks.
  • Firstly, the price tag. Retailing at approximately $2,300, it’s one of the pricier production model Strats out there. If you’re seeking a more budget-friendly alternative, you may want to explore the Fender American Professional II Stratocaster HSS, which offers similar quality and features at around $1,500.
  • Secondly, the noiseless pickups. While the Ultra Noiseless Vintage single-coil pickups and Ultra Double Tap humbucker diminish hum and noise while preserving tone, some players may prefer the authentic character and dynamic response of traditional single-coil pickups. Additionally, noiseless pickups may sound too sterile or compressed, particularly with overdrive or distortion effects.
  • Ultimately, it’s crucial to be aware of these potential downsides before deciding on the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster HSS. Nonetheless, the guitar does have numerous pros, such as improved body contours, a Modern D-shaped neck profile, locking tuners, a Floyd Rose tremolo system, and an array of exceptional tones. To truly determine if this guitar suits you, it’s best to play it yourself and experience how it feels and sounds in your own hands.

4. Fender American Ultra Telecaster

INNOVATIVE TELE TONES

Unique neck profile, comfortable and accurate.Noiseless pickups with advanced switching.
Alder body enhances tone.High-quality hardware and accessories.
Picture by Fender

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

PROS

  • If you are in search of a high-performance electric guitar that seamlessly blends classic design with modern features, the Fender American Ultra Telecaster should be on your radar. This exceptional instrument belongs to Fender’s most advanced series, tailored for discerning musicians seeking the pinnacle of precision, performance, and tone. Let’s delve into four key advantages or positive aspects of the Fender American Ultra Telecaster.

    Firstly, it boasts a unique “Modern D” neck profile with Ultra rolled fingerboard edges, providing hours of comfortable playing. The tapered neck heel allows effortless access to the highest frets. Additionally, the 10”-14” compound-radius fingerboard facilitates smooth and accurate soloing, complemented by the 22 medium-jumbo frets which deliver a delightful feel and enhanced durability.

    Secondly, it includes Ultra Noiseless Vintage Tele single-coil pickups that efficiently deliver the distinctive punch and twang synonymous with the Telecaster sound, without any hum or noise interference. The versatile S-1 switch on the volume knob enables seamless switching between series and parallel wiring, expanding your tonal options. Moreover, the treble bleed circuit preserves the vibrant highs at any desired volume level.

    Another noteworthy feature is the sculpted alder body with bound top and back, meticulously designed to provide balanced tones and a comfortable fit. The elegant body contours not only contribute to the guitar’s aesthetics but also reduce weight and enhance overall resonance, ultimately enhancing the playing experience.

    Lastly, the Fender American Ultra Telecaster comes equipped with top-notch hardware and accessories, including sealed locking tuning machines, a 6-saddle bridge with chromed brass saddles, a bone nut, strap locks, and a premium molded hardshell case. These features ensure impeccable tuning stability, precise intonation accuracy, extended sustain, and reliable protection for your instrument.

    The Fender American Ultra Telecaster is an exceptionally versatile and state-of-the-art instrument that will undoubtedly inspire you to elevate your playing to new heights.

CONS

  • The Fender American Ultra Telecaster, a high-end electric guitar, has numerous features and benefits for modern and versatile players. However, before purchasing, it is important to consider a couple of cons.
  • Firstly, it is quite expensive, costing around $1,900, which may not be suitable for those on a tight budget or beginners. Cheaper alternatives with similar quality, like the Fender American Professional II Telecaster or the Fender Player Telecaster, are worth exploring.
  • Secondly, it deviates from the traditional Telecaster design, featuring noiseless pickups, S-1 switching system, compound-radius fingerboard, and sculpted heel. While these features offer more options and comfort, they may not appeal to players seeking an authentic and vintage-style Telecaster. To explore more options, consider checking out the Fender American Original 50s Telecaster or the Fender Vintera 50s Telecaster.

5. Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster

VINTAGE TONAL ELEGANCE

Comfortable “C” shape maple neck.Distinctive sound, versatile, classic controls.
Floating tremolo with lock buttonStunning alder body in 3 colors.
Picture by Fender

PROS

  • If you are in the market for a high-end electric guitar that seamlessly combines vintage style with modern performance, then the Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster is definitely worth considering. This exceptional guitar is a faithful recreation of the original Jazzmaster model from 1958, which found popularity among surf rock, indie rock, and alternative rock musicians. Listed below are four key advantages of the Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster:

    1. The guitar boasts a remarkably comfortable “C” shape maple neck, providing an unparalleled playing experience. Its round-lam rosewood fingerboard with a 7.25″ radius and vintage tall frets truly enhance the playability of the instrument. Additionally, the neck features white binding, pearl blocks, and single-line “Fender Deluxe” tuners, which contribute to its classic look and feel.

    2. Equipped with a pair of American Vintage ’65 Jazzmaster single-coil pickups, this guitar effortlessly delivers the distinctive tone associated with its original counterpart. These pickups offer a bright, clear, and dynamic sound that is suitable for a wide range of musical genres. The three-way toggle switch, volume knob, tone knob, and separate lead/rhythm circuit with its own volume and tone controls provide exceptional versatility in tone shaping.

    3. The Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster features a vintage-style floating tremolo bridge. This bridge includes a lock button that enables you to adjust string tension and create subtle vibrato effects without compromising the tuning stability of the guitar. The bridge’s threaded steel barrel saddle further enhances the instrument’s sustain and resonance.

    4. Boasting a stunning alder body, the Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster is available in three captivating colors: Dakota Red, Olympic White, and Surf Green. The body is finished with a thin nitrocellulose lacquer, allowing the wood to breathe and age naturally over time. This creates a distinct patina and character for each individual guitar.

    The Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster pays homage to its renowned history while incorporating modern features and exceptional playability. It is an excellent choice for guitarists who appreciate the rich legacy of Fender guitars and those who seek to explore new sonic possibilities with an offset guitar.

CONS

  • The Fender American Vintage II 1966 Jazzmaster is a recreation of the classic mid-1960s Jazzmaster, featuring an alder body, maple neck with rosewood fingerboard, vintage-style pickups and hardware, and offset shape. Despite its allure, it does come with a few drawbacks.
  • Firstly, its lack of versatility restricts it primarily to surf, indie, alternative, and experimental rock genres. Heavier or more aggressive music may not sound ideal due to the low-output and bright, twangy pickups. Furthermore, the floating tremolo system can cause tuning stability issues when used aggressively.
  • Secondly, this guitar may not be comfortable for extended playing, thanks to its heavy body and thick neck, which may not suit people with smaller hands or who prefer a slimmer profile. Additionally, the offset shape can make it difficult to access upper frets and balance on a strap. While these cons are subjective, players seeking a more versatile, comfortable, and modern option may find other choices within the Fender lineup.

6. Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster

REVOLUTIONARY HYBRID SOUNDS

10 different body style and tone wood combinations.Authentic hum-free electric tone.
Naturally loud and resonant.Made in Corona, high quality.
Picture by Fender

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

PROS

  • If you are in the market for a versatile and innovative electric guitar, the Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster should be at the top of your list. This exceptional guitar seamlessly combines the best features of both acoustic and electric instruments, giving you a vast range of sounds and styles perfect for any genre or musical situation. Let’s take a closer look at four key benefits of the Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster:

    First and foremost, it features a revolutionary Acoustic Engine developed by Fender in collaboration with Fishman, renowned pioneers in guitar technology. This Acoustic Engine offers an impressive selection of ten distinct body style and tone wood combinations, ranging from the rich resonance of a dreadnought to the compact and focused tones of a parlor guitar. You can effortlessly blend and switch between these voices using a simple knob, giving you complete control over your own unique sound.

    Additionally, the Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster boasts a Noiseless magnetic pickup, ensuring that you can attain authentic hum-free Fender electric tone. Whether you choose to use this pickup by itself or mix it with an acoustic voice, the possibilities for sonic experimentation are virtually limitless. Furthermore, the noiseless nature of the pickup eliminates any unwanted hum or buzz, guaranteeing a flawless performance every time.

    The guitar’s hollow Telecaster-inspired body not only delivers a naturally loud and resonant sound with remarkable projection but is also incredibly lightweight and comfortable to play. It features an integrated forearm contour and a neck constructed from mahogany, offering enhanced playability. With the addition of the patent-pending Stringed Instrument Resonance System (SIRS), the natural vibration and sustain of the instrument are remarkably improved.

    Lastly, Fender manufactures the American Acoustasonic Telecaster in Corona, CA, at the same factory where they produce their iconic electric instruments. This means that the guitar exhibits the same impeccable craftsmanship and attention to detail that Fender is renowned for. To protect your investment, the guitar also comes with a deluxe molded case that ensures its safety during transportation while providing easy portability.

    The Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster is a true game-changer in the world of electric guitars. Redefining the possibilities for what an electric guitar can achieve, it presents musicians with an unparalleled range of sounds and styles.

CONS

  • The Fender American Acoustasonic Telecaster is an innovative hybrid guitar blending acoustic and electric features. Its unique pickup system allows you to switch between various sounds and models, from a classic Telecaster to a dreadnought acoustic. However, two cons to consider before purchasing this guitar are the price and battery. At around $2,000, it is pricier than most guitars in the market, leaving you to question if you truly need all its features. Additionally, the rechargeable lithium-ion battery needs regular charging to power the pickup system and preamp. With a 20-hour estimated battery life, varying usage and settings, and reliance on a special USB cable, maintenance could be a challenge.

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