Quality levels of all the different Squiers

Discussion in 'Squier Stratocasters' started by MyToyBrain, Mar 19, 2020.

  1. dbrian66

    dbrian66 Squier-holic

    Jul 14, 2017
    Maryland, USA

    They are Buddha pickups. The guy sells them on Reverb. He will make them however you want them. I asked him to make me a set like whatever Mark Knophler (no idea if that was spelled right ) used on Sultans of Swing.


    I even gave him a shout out on the ball of the headstock.

  2. painter33

    painter33 Squier Talker

    Jun 29, 2010
    Going to disagree on early Affinities. ‘96-‘98 MIC Affinities had alder bodies and great slick necks. They were full thickness, compared to the pared down later models, and were/are great platforms for upgrades/mods. “Made in China” were superior to the “Crafted in China” or the Indonesians, etc. that followed. They were ‘50s styled but did have weaknesses in the electronics and cheaper tuners and trem bridges. All those are easily changed and the result is a very good player.
    dbrian66 and Eddie like this.
  3. jefffam

    jefffam Dr. Squier

    Jan 26, 2015
    Portland, TN
    Not too many abbreviations. SE - Special edition

    NC / YN - First two letters of serial number for specific years of guitars

    Yako - Not an abbreeviationb, a 'WesternIzed' name of a Taiwanese guitar maker. It is different in Chinese. Eddie would have to give you the proper translation. Anyway, they are generally referred to as Yako. Just like Cort, AXL, Samick, etc.

    And Deluxes are not the same thing as Classic Vibe. Different line all together.
  4. vintageguitarz

    vintageguitarz Squier Talker

    Aug 2, 2011
    So Cal
    I sure hope the h3ll your list is Worst (top) to Best (bottom)!!
    The "Best" are"
    1980's Japanese Squiers
    1990's Japanese Squiers
    1996-7 Korean Pro Tones made by Cor-tek and Shaehan Korea
    1995 on Korean Squiers (Shaehan 1st, Cor-tek 2nd, Vester 3rd.)
    Then you can argue about all the others in the middle, early ones from Indonesia made at the Cor-tek factory.
    Worst, the Crap from China and India

    "Solid Black Squier logo"(no border of silver or gold) Squiers, II's and Bullets (from Korea by Young Chang and Cort) are the ones with Laminated Bodies, are NOT the "bad" reputation they have. The Laminated wood was direction alternating Ash, or Basswood (an Asian Alder), some "music wood" lamination used for Grand Pianos. The wood Sound was actually good, on par with a 3-piece solid Alder or Basswood body (a little "darker" than Ash), the necks were Japanese or Korean Maple (identical to North American and European Maple) and the electronics was the same used on other Squiers.

    I worked for Fender from 1972 - 1999 (Luthier, Production Supr, Product Mgr, Product Mgr Imports). Now I have a Luthier shop + Retail Sales.
    GEECEE and dbrian66 like this.
  5. TimTheViking

    TimTheViking Squier-holic

    Geez... they're like rabbits. Good thing you started 4,482 posts ago.
    jefffam and dbrian66 like this.
  6. Ricky3Fingerd

    Ricky3Fingerd Squier-Nut

    Nov 26, 2019
    I have yet to see and indo SE. CXS or CAE. Both chinese
    drewcp and dbrian66 like this.
  7. Eddie

    Eddie Squier-Axpert

    Nov 5, 2016
    New York
    Yep, you would be talking about the late NC's, YN7, and CY98. Awesome guitars !!!
    Ricky3Fingerd and dbrian66 like this.
  8. Baiano

    Baiano New Member

    Dec 18, 2009
    London, England
    I've had two Squires which have been lovely (versus three crap Epiphone 'G' clones). A few years ago (family being born) I got rid of much of it. The only electric I now own is a standard Strat that I upgraded with Gotohs and a new electronics suite from Bare Knuckles (the Apaches). It is a real keeper and I am never going to let it go! It is just Basswood, made in China or Taiwan and it is just really really good after the mods. My message is that there are some really good Squires out there if you are sensible about changing the hardware.

    Squire strat
    Yamaha LJ16
    Weber mandolin
    Italian 1/2 size guitar

    Japanese Fender tele std
    Gibson Dove
    US Fender tele custom
    Ibanez 70's strat rip-off
    Antoria LP standard
    Ekco acoustic
    Antoria LP custom rip-off
    Epiphone LP Junior
    A Parlour guitar that I think was 'Arbiters' - can't remember.
    Epiphone LP Standard
    Epiphone Explorer, bought as a joke.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  9. Gabeezlebub

    Gabeezlebub Squier Talker

    Feb 16, 2019
    Thanks for the help Jeffam!!!
    Ricky3Fingerd and dbrian66 like this.
  10. kniah

    kniah Squier-Meister

    Jan 30, 2019
    Waltham, MA
    I only have one date point but it supports what @jefffam claims: I have a Yako made CY99 Standard Strat as well as an IC00 Indonesian made Standard Strat. Only one year apart in build date but a noticeable difference in build quality. All of the small details are better on the particular Yako/CY made guitar. Hardware is better, strap pins are centered on the body (not true on the IC), paint finish is nicer and glossier, and the neck just feels special. I can easily get lost in a jam when playing the CY but struggle when playing the IC. Like @jefffam , my IC Strat doesn't have nearly as much soul as my CY. I have tried a few new MIM player strats at my local Guitar Center and I haven't found one yet that I would take over my CY, that's how good it is.
  11. Gabeezlebub

    Gabeezlebub Squier Talker

    Feb 16, 2019
    Love that headstock. Hilarious!!!
    dbrian66 likes this.
  12. Gabeezlebub

    Gabeezlebub Squier Talker

    Feb 16, 2019
    Just picked up a Squire mini with the internal amp and speaker. There aren’t many of these out there. I found only two, one guy wants $300 and the other guy &150 firm. It makes a great travel guitar and I hope to bring it up to the hunting shack. No amps, no chords, no noisy generators or electricity. Very convenient for just noodling around. I hunt alone alot and can only read for so long. The sound won’t be very good quality but that’s ok.
    The mini’s are considered on the bottom of the list but I was very impressed with mine. It sounds great, and I can’t really find anything radically wrong with it. Impresses me as being a great guitar for beginners and players of smaller stature. Got too many other guitars to worry about modding a mini. Anyone else like their Squire mini’s?
    dbrian66 likes this.
  13. pblanton

    pblanton Squier Talker

    Jan 27, 2020
    Black Forest, Colorado
    I have always eschewed Squiers as cheap, not-very-good, beginner guitars. I have an American Fender Strat, and a MIM Fender Strat, as well as a number of Ibanez, Epiphone, Gibson, PRS, and others. But I was wrong about Squier. Sure, some of them are crap, but some aren't.

    I now have two. One of them is a black Strat that is an early-eighties Japanese JV Squier. It has upgraded Fender American wiring, pots and switch, and a set of Lindy Fralin pickups. The originally white pickguard and knobs have aged to a nice, cream color and the maple on the neck and headstock is nice and flamey. It did have some cigarette burns on the headstock, but I sanded it down and refinished the neck, and applied a Fender Stratocaster waterslide decal underneath the clear-coat.

    I also have a 2018 Contemporary HSS Active in Olympic White that I bought new. It is a very high quality guitar at a normally great price, but I only paid $260 for mine, brand-new, delivered to my door from Chicago Music Exchange.

    I didn't like the black pickguard so I switched it to mint-green, and I wanted to do some other tweaks, so I did. One of them was a mirror-image Hendrix homage headstock decal to complement the reverse-headstock.

    Here is a pic...

    Last edited: Mar 25, 2020
    MyToyBrain likes this.
  14. Roccobagadonuts

    Roccobagadonuts Dr. Squier

    Sep 8, 2010
    Anything from Young Chang seems like its always alder with maple top/back. From the Squiers they built to the stuff they built labled Fenix as well... So for 80's Squier Bullets u had the MIJ SQ model 1st which was wood. Then the A Series Bullet which was wood but a lot different style wise then the other Bullets. Then the MIJ E Series Bullet which was plywood... Then the MIK E7 Bullet from Young Chang which was alder with maple top/back... Then finally the E9 Bullet from Cort I think it was which still kinda confuses me. As I always thought they were plywood but then seemed to see some guy strip one that wasn't...
    dbrian66 likes this.
  15. MyToyBrain

    MyToyBrain Squier Talker

    Mar 17, 2020
    Minneapolis, Minnesota
    Do the Squier Tele's have thinner bodies like the strat as well?
    dbrian66 likes this.
  16. BT224

    BT224 Squier-Meister

    Feb 7, 2020
    My 10yo loves hers. It's a nice little guitar.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  17. GEECEE

    GEECEE Squier-Meister

    Jan 11, 2017
    This re laminated wood and Saehan. Saehan is a noted maker of quality string instruments. Daughter plays a cello. Cost me $1400 more than 20 years ago. Lam tonewood back and sides, natural wood cap. Lovely sound. IMO, Yamaha was clever in their adverts but the reality is use of lam in a solid body electric was smart - less expensive and more efficient manufacturing, with as good or better tonal qualities. "Problem" of weight with lam was addresssed by reduction of thickness - even more savings at no loss of quality. Smart. Yamaha undone 'em with messaging.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  18. Fret Cheese

    Fret Cheese Squier-Meister

    Sep 10, 2016
    One more vote for MIC vs MII :)
    dbrian66 likes this.
  19. pfapin

    pfapin Squier-Meister

    Mar 6, 2018
    the ILL side
    Nice, he is highly regarded as one of the best pickup builders over on A Guitar Forum. Ive been meaning to get a set of his pickups someday.
    dbrian66 likes this.
  20. dbrian66

    dbrian66 Squier-holic

    Jul 14, 2017
    Maryland, USA
    Yeah, that’s where I found out about him. Great guy to deal with and awesome pickups!
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