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Discussion in 'Squier Telecasters' started by lvidal, Nov 11, 2020.
Well, first of all, thank you everyone for the good wishes.
This will be a little long post but I want to address every single thing I had a doubt of before I made the jump, so any other person with the same insecurities can have a good review here to maybe make a final decision. Most probably these things have been said and discussed before, but please accept my take.
Now, I'm still very much in disbelief. I still can't understand what is happening here. Is Fender working to make Squier a high end brand in a not so far future? This is crazy.
I can't find a single flaw, and when I say flaw I mean something bad, crooked or needs some kind of repair or that compromises the integrity in some kind of way. Not that it is a work of art, but man! This ain't a $400 guitar, nope. It isn't.
This one is made in Indonesia, some say China is still making them. But if someone is in doubt about the quality of Indonesian guitars being inferior than China... I'm sorry but I can't agree with that at all. Indonesian companies really know how to make excellent guitars, if this wasn't the case somebody as picky as Paul Reed Smith would not have chosen them to make the SE line. Go look at Youtube for "Indonesia factory tour" for Cort (which most probably make these CV Squiers), PRS or Rob Chapman and most probably any uncertainties and doubts will dissipate. This company is HUGE.
Obviously Fender is saving money with these guitars in everything but specially in:
Raw material and workforce
The weak point here are the tuning machines (more on that at the end). I don't want to go so far as to say that the pots and switch are bad because that takes time to surface and I have only a little more than one day with the guitar, but so far they feel and work as quality parts. I don't care if they are not CTS or if they are small, the taper of these pots work as the best high quality CTS. Every single touch from 0 to 1 and all up to 10 they affect the volume and tone. They are really precise, smooth and feel really solid. They don't wobble a single bit and they don't have any play when turned in any direction. I'm also surprised that they have solid shafts. Whether they last, that's another thing I still have to wait to know.
The switch was a good surprise too. I was expecting a stubborn lever that you can't slowly move because it jumps to position, but this is not the case at all. I moved it and it felt just like a CRL lever and I was so surprised that I opened the control plate and this is what I found:
So, it is a CRL style switch. It doesn't make any noise or pops at all when switching. Easy to control. Works like a charm.
The control plate itself I though it could be thin and flimsy but it's not. Hard and thick plate.
The cavities have a neat and clean routing, just perfect. No sharp edges neither. Really good attention to detail. They don't feature any shielding paint, at least on the control cavity and under the pickguard. I didn't remove the bridge plate. In my sound tests I haven't noticed any problems at all so far, but at this price point that is not a deal breaker by any means. If you need it just buy some shielding tape and problem solved.
The neck is routed for a humbucker if sometime you want to experiment.
The neck pickup reads PTP1601-1 EG6/VIBE-BLK-F which I have read are made by Cort, so most probably these guitars are made by them and that brings some peace of mind, because they have good quality control.
Now, on to the body. It is made of 4 very good matched pieces. Now, do I care about that? No. No at all. I personally don't think that multiple pieces affects the tone or the sound properties to some crazy discernible level. In fact, I think that maybe, just maybe it adds more nuances to tone of the instrument. Of course one piece would look better in cases where the pieces are too different. In that case is better to paint it in solid colors. And for those who don't know all Fender guitar bodies are multiple pieces. The vast majority are 3 pieces, since the 50's. Now Custom Shop are making 1 and 2 pieces. That wasn't really the case for Fender NEVER.
The neck, oh the neck... This is the real star here. This neck is so nice. Rolled edges fingerboard, so comfortable. In fact there's no edge in this neck that hasn't been beveled. Every edge is rounded. This thing alone worth the $400. The fret ends are nicely done, no sharp edges, nothing is protruding. Also, I have read a lot about the neck being too thin, I don't know anyone else's but this is not that thin, certainly is not fat but is not skinny. I find it perfect. About .830" at first fret and ~.900 at 12 is not thin.
The action is spot on (att. anthony79). I didn't have to touch nothing about the setup, I don't know if I'm lucky or what, but this thing came perfectly setup for my liking. The string heights are just like I set them up and there's no buzz anywhere. In the bass side on the 12th is like 1.75mm, the treble side is 1.5mm and the D and G are 2mm maybe a tough more.
The nut doesn't show the cleanest of the jobs in the slots, but the depths are just perfect, strings are not high at all, easy to press and there's no buzz. The slots could have been cut cleaner. It doesn't look like the nut is plastic, there's a very little chip missing in the B slot and at the touch the feeling is like bone. If indeed it is plastic is not a cheap junk, at least should be tusq. But I very much think is bone.
The tuning machines are the only things that feels cheap. They look great and they don't wobble. They feel firm, but when you turn them there's where you know they are not that good. The gears are hard, ones more than others. I lubed them with vaseline and it did help nice, but still they feel cheap and are not very precise, when you turn them down they tend to give too much, but so far they have hold tuning very well. I'll just wait until they fail to buy some Klusons.
As for the saddles they look well made, they are not those tiny barrels i've seen, this are full size and have the slots for the strings to maintain their position. They are solid and keep their position firmly. The guitar sounds really nice in each position and resonates really well acoustically and plugged. I do like more the brass saddles look but I really don't know how much they add to the sound, I'll have to try them.
The pickups sound REALLY NICE. I love that the bridge is not shimmery, too glassy or ear hurting, is does have a that sharp dry middle tone that cuts through everything but it does retain a good low end. The neck is as creamy as peanut butter. Sweet but can cut real good when the tone is all the way up. I have not even thoughts of changing them.
Finally, the guitar is on the heavy side at about 9.5 pounds. I don't care, I've always liked heavy guitars and 9.5 is on my limits.
Well, I hope this gives some good insights to any one interested in getting one of these as I was. I saw every youtube video, read every review and article and honestly I can say that it worth much more than every penny paid. If Fender have big plans for the Squier brand they are going really well. Highly recommended.
A little background of myself, I have been playing for about 26 years by now, lots of guitars played through so many years. I define myself meticulous about guitars but not crazy picky. For me some things should be what they should and work as intended, some blemish here or there is not the end of the world unless you can't stop seeing it. As long as the guitar can be setup properly, feels comfortable and sounds great everything is fine. I have a Strat with a custom warmoth neck that plays and sounds incredible and two Gibson Les Paul, one Standard (no-weight relief) and a 1994 Studio Lite.
Congrats and great review!
They call flippin the control plate "hotrodding" it... Popularised by "The King Of Dieselbilly" Bill Kirchen...
Lol, well, I sure as hell hope not, lol... My '50's CV Tele is my best guitar, hands down... I got the vintage blonde with the Alnico IIIs (vs the BSB with Alnico Vs), and I use that thing on everything... And outta all my guitars, it's the only one that's ALMOST stock (I added an unsuccessful 4-way switch... My original 3 positions work, but not the new 4th position... And yeah, I disconnected the pup cover, lol... Think I got a bad switch)...
Warms my heart a lil, lol... When I first found this forum, I was a Squier FANATIC, but I had always been the ONLY Squier fan that I knew... And I couldn't even change strings properly... I knew NOTHING about workin on guitars, or ANYTHING other than actually playing it... But I came here for advice on buyin a CV Tele... I've still got it, and I've been a member here for about 3 years now, and I'm buildin my own now... This really is the best guitar forum you could find...