What’s still to come?

Discussion in 'Squier Telecasters' started by nicod98, Jun 13, 2021.

  1. nicod98

    nicod98 Squier-Nut

    Jul 9, 2014
    I’ll start with an overview of the Current Squier Telecaster-line, give you my conclusions, and get to some questions at the end of the post.

    My view on the current Squier Telecaster line

    The past few years have been very hectic in Squier-country. As I’m a Telecaster guy, I’m only talking telecasters here (if any Stratocaster affectionado wants to do a similar thing, please do so in the Stratocaster subforum). We’ve seen the a few lines being deprecated, like the Standard and the Vintage Modified-series, part of which has now become part of the Classic Vibe Series.

    If I’m correct (and I haven’t seen any in a store lately) the void left by the Standard is now taken by the Affinity, which is now string-through all the way, and even has a belly cut (which I do NOT prefer). There even is budget dual humbucker solution in the Affinity Deluxe. The Affinity tele, even though it always has been a budget telecaster has made quite a good name, and I can really vouch for that, having compared it with some of the cheap copies that seem to be highly appraised, but are only usable as decoration IMHO.

    The Bullet is the new default low-end Squier, string-through, but without the belly cut. My own earlier FSR Bullet had the exact same pickups as some of my Affinity teles, and it seems to have taken it’s place in the line-up.

    The new Contemporary series is aimed at more “modern” players, with only two guitars so far. One (now deprecated) HH, which was a classic dual humbucker tele, and the RH, which looks to be aimed at lovers of “harder” music… This series seems to follow the rule that models only remain active for a relatively short while (one or two years at maximum).

    Paranormal series guitars follow the logic that seems to have been behind the Vintage Modified Series, namely guitars that are not based on legendary models but involve some experimenting with pickup combinations. The Vintage Modfied series gave use a telecaster bass before, and now we have a Paranormal Baritone telecaster. We also got a normal 25.5″ scale with pickups looking like Jazzmaster pickups, but being somewhat P90-related/sounding, which I have been enjoying very much.

    In the Classic Vibe series we find guitars based on, and more or less having the same “vibe” as the originals from back in the day. So far we’ve seen 50s and 60s Telecasters and Esquires, ’69 and ’72 Thinlines, and the 70’s Deluxe and Custom models. Some in some very nice (or surprising) colours, with the more vibrant colours being reserved as FSR-editions for certain big resellers. The same goes for the Bullet and Affinity series as well.

    So from lower to higher quality this seems to be the new line-up:
    • Bullet Telecaster: basic classic 21 fret S/S telecaster with some modern features (like 6 block saddles on a modern bridge), narrow tall frets, ceramic pickups, poplar body, aimed at budget-aware beginners.
    • Affinity Telecaster: slightly more luxurious, 21 fret S/S or H/H telecaster, same modern features as the Bullet, with medium jumbo frets, ceramic pickups, poplar body, aimed at the same beginners, but giving them some slightly different features
    • Contemporary Telecaster: 22 jumbo frets on a 12″ radius fretboard, ceramic humbucker pickups, and nice looks, let’s call it a “modern player” telecaster (wink to the former Fender-branded series).
    • Paranormal Telecaster: anything out of the ordinary type of guitar, with a very nice quality feeling to it.
    • Classic Vibe Telecaster: the real Squier high end Telecaster (and Esquire)

    My Conclusions

    It seems that the Classic Vibe is here to stay as a very well made, but still budget-friendly instrument for many beginners and more experienced players.

    The Affinity and even the Bullet offer very good basic instruments for starters, or as a base for modding. Just like the Classic Vibe series, it seems like this will be around for quite a while. (The Affinity series will turn 25 years old pretty soon)

    Contemporary and Paranormal series seems to be reserved for nice short term models, giving in to the GAS many of us seem to have (yep, I’m guilty as charged).

    I can understand that big resellers like to have exclusive colours, even though this means that the more “boring” colours are kept for the main catalogue, and the more “exciting” colours are used for FSR-releases.

    My Questions

    What features would you like to see on a new Squier tele? What pickup combinations are you looking for that are not available yet? What colours do you want? I’d buy a British Racing Green tele in a heartbeat, even it were just a Bullet or Affinity tele ;)

    Are there any models you would like to add to the “Classic Vibe” series, like the ’83 Telecaster Elite with the active humbucking pickups, a mid 80s Telecaster Plus (H/S with Lace-pickups), or a new Nashville (based on the ’94-’96 Fender Japan version with two stratocaster pickups: middle and neck, or the ’97+ MIM version with a traditional tele neck pickup), a new late 2000’s Custom shop based Cabronita (for me a Cabronita is certainly a “classic” model already)? These models could be “temporary” or more “permanent” members of this series, depending on their success.

    Do you have new ideas for a 2022 Paranormal Telecaster? I’d really love to see a 12-string Telecaster, perhaps with a combination of piezo and regular pickups (use the switch for the electric pickup select and add a nice “blend” knob to mix both signals or choose for either the piezo or electric pickups) ? I also suppose a new take on a P90’s based telecaster should be on the horizon (perhaps they should be inspired by the now deprecated Classic Series 50 telecaster P90)…


    What are your ideas?
    mimmo, miket1117 and grizzlewulf like this.
  2. grizzlewulf

    grizzlewulf Squier-holic

    Dec 11, 2020
    Lucerne, California
    New Affinities have a wider nut width this year? Do the Bullets as well?
    fattboyzz likes this.
  3. nicod98

    nicod98 Squier-Nut

    Jul 9, 2014
    In my experience many CV 50s teles have a more narrow nut and a more narrow E-e spacing than most Affinity teles ever had. The worst are the early 2000 standards, with an E-e spacing that is only suitable for fingers of 10-year olds.
    Las Palmas Norte and grizzlewulf like this.
  4. miket1117

    miket1117 Squier-Meister Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 31, 2018
    Kansas City
    i dont get into the technical stuff like a lot guys do, but the mere mention of a Squier Tele 12-string with a piezo shivers me timbers, esp if if a Thinline version.
    bls8226, nicod98 and grizzlewulf like this.
  5. AcrylicSuperman

    AcrylicSuperman Squier-Meister

    Jan 12, 2021
    Honestly, since they have been diving into baritone and bass iv territory, I'd like to see them do a baritone 12 string. It probably wouldn't have a huge market but I think it would be pretty cool.
    nicod98 and grizzlewulf like this.
  6. fattboyzz

    fattboyzz Dr. Squier

    Nov 29, 2017
    Newnan ,Ga.
    Ive never seen a narrow nut on the Bullets like there has been on the Affinity series. 42 is my absolute minimum. ;)
    Gip111, nicod98 and grizzlewulf like this.
  7. beagle

    beagle Squier-holic

    Nov 19, 2017
    I'd like to see a Classic Vibe with JV specs. 7¼" radius and vintage frets. Nirvana...