American Deluxe Stratocaster Review

manufacturer: Fender date: 11/09/2012 category: Electric Guitars
Fender: American Deluxe Stratocaster
The Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster is instantly comfortable with irresistible tone and playability. You won't believe your fingers and ears.
 Sound: 9.1
 Overall Impression: 9.3
 Reliability & Durability: 8.8
 Action, Fit & Finish: 8.6
 Features: 9.5
 Overall rating:
 9.4 
 Reviewer rating:
 9.1 
 Users rating:
 9.7 
 Votes:
 60 
reviews (8) pictures (3) 4 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 10
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 09, 2012
6 of 6 people found this review helpful

Price paid: C$ 1300

Purchased from: The Arts

Features: I am going to do a comparison between the American Deluxe strats HSS and SSS. I own both and had plenty of time to get to the know the differences. Who would have thought that two similar guitars would, in fact, be so different. However, in this category they remain the same. Both have locking tuners, strap locks, S1 Switch with noisless SCN pickups, hand rolled necks etc. Just beautiful craftsmanship altogether. The HSS, however, has the added DH-1 humbucker(at the bridge), and a LSR roller nut. My HSS is a Montego black with a gold pickguard, while my SSS is the Amber with the brown pickguard. Both lovely finishes and features. // 10

Sound: This is where they seperate. I have play the HSS for much longer and have tried in on a number of different amps. I could not find an amp to accomodate the muddy sound the neck pickup gave with the S1 switch. Mix that in with the fact that the first bridge is deemed useless with the S1 (because it's already humbucked), I then lose out on two of the many Switch possibilities. Harmonics are crazy on this guitar. The SSS really shines here. I use all positions ( S1 and req.). I don't feel limited as I did with the HSS, simply because I get the best of both worlds. Single coils and a hum free warm tone with the S1. This Strat has more of the authentic "quack" sound we Strat lovers enjoy. Plus, with the S1 positions, you get a warm full tone with added bite/crunch. I prefer this tone, distorted, more so then the HSS DH-1 humbucker at the bridge position. The cleans are perfect aswell. Keep in mind that I play genres ranging from Blues to a Silverchair esque Metal. The SSS takes my vote here. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The action on both of these guitars is impeccable. No problems here. Oddly enough, however, my SSS seems to be lighter in weight then my HSS. Yes, I have compensated for the DH-1 humbucker in the HSS. Not really a problem but I find more comfort in the SSS when strapped to my body. I hate to put it down. // 10

Reliability & Durability: Like all Fenders, before or after, these beauties will last a lifetime or two. I don't need a back up guitar when I bring either of them to a gig, thanks to the ease and stability of the locking tuners that make life so much easier. They keep strings in tune very well and make re-stringing a joy (20-30 seconds per string). My only required back up now are just extra packs of strings. // 10

Overall Impression: My main amplifier at the moment is a Marshall 50 watt Valvestate. Thanks to both my Fender guitars and my Marshall amp, I can deliver any style of music. The cleans are to die for. Warm, full tones with a hint of reverb. The distortion, either on full gain or half way, rocks when adding the mix. I can hit some heavy Soundgarden "spoonman" riffs or some Clapton "Layla" styles. I play mostly rhythm guitar but occasionally hit lead. In saying that, I have to go with the SSS hands down. To let you know how much I like it, I am now getting rid of all my other guitars simply because I don't need or will ever use them when confronted with the SSS. I have finally found my guitar after so many years and after so much waisted money. Fender out did themselves with this one. I would buy another if this one ever got lost or stolen. Hope this helped. // 10

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overall: 9.8
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: Camocow08, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: USA, '09, beautiful. The neck is so slim, and smooth, your hands will glid from the body to head, and back again, with as little, to no, effort at all. The frets, spaced equally, allow for extreme versatility. The 3 noiseless pick-ups, with S-1 switching, provides an endless market for tone and sound. The Strat body is lite-weight, yet durable and sound. The bridge, brushed stainless steel through-body, is ingenius. The locking tuners offer days of solid pitches plus look stunning. IT came with travel case, strap locks, pop-in whammy bar, keys, allen wrenches, and strap. // 10

Sound: Versatile.Flawless. Sleek. Through a tube amp, the sound is remarkable for blues, rock, lite-end "stuff". The bridge pick-up puts out the brightest tone you'll ever find. While the neck pick-up is deeper than an ocean trench............................................................................................................................................ // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The pick-ups were right were I like 'em. Even strings were perfectly in-tune. Couldn't ask for better action.........................,,,,,,,,,,,,,,!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! // 9

Reliability & Durability: Live playing= easily. Every piece of the guitar looks like it will last a century. The guitar(in case) and I fell down the stairs and there is no trace(other than the dent in the wall)that such an event took place....................................................................................................................... // 10

Overall Impression: I play everything; Rock, Blues, Metal, ect. I might, in the future, replace a pick-up for something more suitable for metal(but that's my personal oppinion). This is the only guitar in this world for me....so get one....................................................................................................... // 10

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overall: 9.8
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: ebmusicman16, on november 09, 2012
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 1000

Purchased from: GAK

Features: My Strat was made in America in 2008. It has a maple neck and is one of the last L/H american deluxe strats to be made. It has the new S1 Switch system which is brilliant for all types of music. My guitar came with a hard case, 10ft cable, strap and strap locks. // 10

Sound: I am currently using this Strat through a Line 6 Floor POD plus connected to a Line 6 spider IV. It suits my style of music for example deep purple, pink floyd, slipknot and many others because it has a smooth neck so I can move fast up and down it. The clean sound I currently use for it is amazing because it works for basically any clean song. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar has no problems that I can see or hear. The only thing that has ever gone wrong is the stap lock has come off so I just refitted it. No big deal. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This guitar would definetly withstand live playing, bands like Lynyrd Skynyrd use it so its definetly up to standard. The Strat would last over a lifetime because it is so well built. I would never go to a gig without a backup because it would be stupid in case a broke a string (which wouldn't be the guitars fault). But I don't think I would need to use the backup. It has a 3 tone sunburst finish that will never wear away. // 10

Overall Impression: This is a brilliant guitar that will last my whole life. It was a massive step up from my first guitar (Jim Deacon for 80) but I can see where my money has gone and I just hope that I wont need to buy a new one because L/H american deluxes are hard to come by. I love the tone that the S1 Switch brings to the guitar. Overall 10/10. Well done Fender! // 10

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overall: 9
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: stilt37, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1400

Purchased from: Musician's Workshop- Asheville, NC

Features: My Sunset Metallic Deluxe Strat is an SSS made in 2010. It has 22 frets, a solid alder body, and a maple neck. There are some great upgrades on this guitar from previous years. The locking schaller/fender tuners are fantastic, and cut restringing time in half. They also stay in tune wonderfully. The S-1 switching system is awesome, but I'll talk about that in a bit. It has a compound radius fretboard going from 9" to 14", and a paint job fit for a king. Fender outdid themselves with the sunset metallic paint. The noiseless pickups have been upgrades and produce zero hum, even around a lot of electronics. Which is really helpful while home recording. It came with the Standard molded SKB Fender locking case. A black leather Fender strap was a surprise to me, as most Fenders come with the typical retro looking strap. I love it, though. Also included were a pair of Schaller strap buttons which are much better than the Dunlop straploks I have on my Epiphone (which are still good). // 10

Sound: I play mostly blues and southern rock like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Ted Nugent, Skynyard. Also some Hendrix, Clapton, and old school Metallica. The guitar fits me perfectly, and with the right amp/effects combination, you can get some crisp thrash sounds. Obviously it plays the blues beautifully, it's a Fender! I run it through a gnx4 multieffects processor into a Blackheart BH5H for blues, and a Mesa Boogie F30 for harder rock and metal. It sounds amazing, especially clean blues. The S-1 switching system offers SO MANY tonal options. Each one is unique from the others, and all are very useful for different tunes to give each a different flavor. there's only one position that's really useless (s-1 on- 5way in the 5th position) But all of the others are great. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The factory setup was pretty good. There was a little fret buzz on the d string around frets 5-7 if plucked exceptionally hard, and on the E strings around frets 2-3. But not much, and it was easily adjustable. The pickups' poles are just right out of the box, and the finish is flawless. Every control works perfectly, and feel very strong. // 8

Reliability & Durability: This thing is built to last. The hardware is solid, the tuners feel very sturdy, and I have no doubt it WILL last. The Schaller strap locks that came with it are great, as always, and I would gig without a backup if I had to. The finish is great, I haven't bumped into anything yet though, so I don't know how thin it is. But I think it will fade beautifully with time. // 9

Overall Impression: I've been playing for about 4 years. I've played lots of different guitars.. A couple of Gibson sgs, ltd, G&L american made strats, Parker flies, epis, yada yada. The only guitar I've ever played that I like (as a whole) close to this one is a Parker fly my buddy had once, and that's only because of the Acoustic amp in the bridge. I love everything about this thing, and if it was stolen I would definitely save up for another one. It's just too good. Fender deserves a lot of props for the new American Deluxe. // 9

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overall: 9.4
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: one_good_reason, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 1045

Purchased from: guitraguitar

Features: My american deluxe Strat is a 2010 made in California, SSS configuration model with a gloss urethane tungsten finish with black pickups and guard. the body is select alder with a flat top and contoured back. The neck is a modern C shape neck with a maple fret board, a satin urethane finish and 22 medium jumbo frets. there is a 5 way toggle Switch to select different configurations of the three N3 noiseless pick ups. Also included is the S-1 Switch which allows the owner to combine pick ups together and form a new set of configurations: Position 1. Bridge, Middle and Neck Pickups in Series Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Series Position 3. Middle and Neck Pickup in Series Position 4. Bridge and Neck Pickup Out-Of-Phase Position 5. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Series and Out-Of-Phase, and in Parallel with Neck Pickup The Standard two tone one volume controls are included as is the afore mentioned S-1 Switch which is concealed in the volume pot. Standard Strat tremelo system is on and the tuners are Fender Deluxe Staggered Cast/Sealed Locking Tuning Machine heads. Included in the sale was a SKB hard case with Fender logo on it, a black leather Fender strap - as apposed to the Standard ' Vintage look' strap often included with Fenders, a set of strap locks and the Whammy/Trem arm. // 9

Sound: I play allot of blues along with some classic rock and some harder and more obscure musical styles and I must say, the Strat delivers. It handles almost ALL musical styles that are thrown at it and the 'out of phase' options are brilliant for blues or funky 'quack' tones. The amps that I play this through are a Line 6 Spider 75 and a Vox VT120+ and I especially like the AC30 sounds with it with a generous amount of gain. Due to the noiseless pick ups means there is only a whisper of a whispers noise from the pick ups which is not noticeable at all. The sound is a very full and rich sound with a balanced amount of treble and bass-y sounds. Thanks to the S-1 switch, the sounds available from this guitar are limitless, however knocking off marks for the in-ability to get allot of feedback from amps. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitars finish is pristine, no chips, no bumps, nothing. The hardware is not at all rusted and are seriously good quality chrome. Intonation is fine and does not require a set up as of yet and seems to be able to take a bit of abuse from the Trem arm. There are no problems with the controls, no sticking or popping when turned and no sound when turned either. // 10

Reliability & Durability: I am pretty sure this guitar would be great for playing live, stays in tune great, hardware will last and the paint wont chip if bumped a bit. The strap buttons are great and the strap locks are better than Dunlop locks I have used before. Every part of this guitar is built to last and will be here long after I will be. // 9

Overall Impression: As mentioned before, this handles any styles of music with ease. The S- switch is a great feature which offers a whole new set of tones to the well known strat. Compared to my Gibson Les Paul which is of similar value, it handles much more styles better and is much lighter and easy to play over long periods of time. This guitar is a great buy and a definite step up from the american Standard strat. I love the tungsten finish as it adds a modern spin on a classic Icon and gives it the little extra 'deluxe' feel to the guitar. Items included are top notch and good quality stuff especially the case which looks like it can seriously take a beating. If lost/stolen, I wouldn't hesitate on replacing it and would buy the exact same style, I love it too much. // 10

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overall: 7.8
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 09, 2012
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 2100

Purchased from: Norway

Features: Mine is a late 2010 American Deluxe strat. Specs on Fender.com I have the N3 single coil setup. Beautiful pearl-ish white with a hint of sparkle in it. The compound radius neck is unbelievable. It has a thin nitrocellulose finish, and has a great feel to it. The top frets are pretty flat, which makes it "impossible" to fret out. The bottom octave has a more familiar 9,5" radius, exactly like the Standard model. Seeing this thing next to a standard, the esthetics alone is worth the price difference. Still a subtle Fender look, no flash, no frills. Tuners are great, but the tremolo block seems a bit light. Tried using 10-52 strings, but this proved impossible with the factory tremolo system. Works fine with 10-48 gilmours. // 9

Sound: I play in a semi-progressive rock band, and a classic rock cover band. Using fairly Standard stompboxes into a Vox AC30 or Fender Twin Reverb. This thing is silent. There is a minor hum, just about the same at HOT humbuckers. But this is no issue at all. Fender did a good job with the N3 pickups. To me they sound about the same as SD SSL-5 pickups, maybe a bit lower output, but without the hum. These things scream if you want them to. Overtones are easily done. I feel that this guitar does the whole spectre, from twangy california sounds to powerful roaring lead tones when using the S-1 switch. This is by far the most versatile guitar I've tried out ever. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: Had to adjust the saddle height, but pickups and fretwork were fine. The locking tuner on the low E-string doesn't seem strong enough to lock a 46+ gauge, so you will have to tighten this with a quarter twist once now and then. Stays in tune, but still, it's a bummer. // 7

Reliability & Durability: This is probably the guitars weakest point. After playing the first gig, the middle pickup just gave up and died. And it was no easy fix, because the routing through the S-1 system is hell on earth. The local guitartech wouldn't touch it either, so it was sent to a Fender service center. After this experience, I can probably never bring this guitar to a gig without a backup (being a MIM strat). Other than electronics, the guitar seems to be build with Precision to last for many years to come. // 5

Overall Impression: All in all, this guitar rocks. If I lost it, I would get another one straight ahead. The sound and playability (and looks of it) outweighs my bad experiences by far. Also, it seems to be a great bang-for-buck when you compare it to ie. an American Standard. This thing is just so much more fun. I tried lots of guitars before ending up with this one, but in this price range, nothing comes close in my opinion. // 8

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overall: 8.8
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: dominodom, on november 09, 2012
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: £ 1179

Purchased from: Rattle and Drum Music

Features: This guitar was made in 2011 in the USA. It has a classic Fender 25.5 inch scale and 22 frets on a maple fingerboard. The body is made of alder and the neck is maple. My guitar has the Olympic Pearl finish. The neck shape is a Modern C and is really comfortable. This combined with the compound radius makes the guitar really easy to play, whether you're playing lead or rhythm. The guitar comes with a 2 point tremelo with locking tuners. This combination can stand up to anything and just does not go out of tune. It can even handle dive bombs as well as most floyd equipped guitars I've played (not that I use dive bombs often). It is equipped with Fender's N3 noiseless pickups that really are noiseless. They give no hum what'soever, even on really high gain sounds. It has a classic Fender control configuration with a 5 way pickup selector and 1 volume and 2 tone controls. It also has the S-1 system which is great, as you can use it to get strong humbucker-ish sounds, but also classic Strat sounds with just the single coils. The guitar also came with a great SKB modeled hard case, strap locks, a cable and even a leather strap. // 10

Sound: I play a lot of styles from blues and classic Rock to Metal and thrash metal. I originally got this to cover the softer side of my music, but this guitar can do them all. Thanks mainly to the S-1 switching, you can get great heavy sounds in an instant that can easily stand up to a humbucker equipped guitar, but it can also get those classic Strat cleans that really make this guitar stand out from the rest. I am currently playing this through a Blackstar HT-20 for home practice and the combination sounds great. Thanks to the pickups, I can dial in the highest gain sounds on my amp, and I get no hum at all (well not enough to care about). This guitar also screams. It is so easy to get harmonics it's unreal. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: The factory set up on this guitar was flawless. The action was perfect, the tremolo was great and the guitar in general just felt expertly set up. I've not even had to adjust it yet. // 8

Reliability & Durability: I've only had this guitar for a couple of weeks, but it really feels like it will last a lifetime or two. Everything is just solid. Nothing is loose, or needed tightening, and the finish looks expertly applied and will last for a long time, and probably age beautifully. I would never use it live without a backup, but the only thing I can see happening to make me switch would be a string breakage, which is obviously just bad luck. // 9

Overall Impression: I play a lot of styles, from blues to thrash, and although I originally thought it would be used mainly for the softer styles, it really can handle just about anything. I have been playing for 4 years and this is by far the best guitar I have played. If this was stolen/lost I would actually grieve, and replace it with exactly the same model. I literally looked at almost every guitar on the market before deciding on this. I needed something versatile and this guitar delivers perfectly. The guitar literally comes with everything, even strap locks which are a great touch. The only complaint is that the strap locks didn't come with instructions on how to install, and I have never even seen any in person before, but I was able to figure it out. // 9

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overall: 7.8
American Deluxe Stratocaster Reviewed by: sugeci, on november 09, 2012
0 of 1 people found this review helpful

Price paid: A$ 1819

Purchased from: Haworth Guitars

Features: 2011 model, maple neck, tungsten finish (black pickguard), 22 med-jumbo frets, alder body, N3 noiseless pickups (SSS) with S-1 switching system, locking tuners. Came with Fender hard case, Fender lead and associated guitar tools. // 8

Sound: I'm playing this Strat through a '65 Deluxe Reverb reissue, in comparison with an Am Std Tele w/ Fender '51 Nocaster pickups and a Am Std Strat ('00 model with Fender 57/62 pickups). I was originally going to go with the Am Std Strat and change the pickups but I wanted to go for the Deluxe to try out the N3's. While I like the sound of these pickups, I feel that they don't go that extra mile that after-market sets offer - namely the Custom Shop '69's or the 57/62's in my older Strat. You can no doubt get the signature Fender cleans with these pickups but you'll probably want to switch them out for another set down the line. On a brighter note, although they are not "noiseless", they are certainly the quietest pickups I've used in any Tele or Strat. I've only fiddled around with the S-1 switch a couple of times but I wasn't too impressed, so I just stick to the stock 5 positions a Strat is known for. I play Beatles, RHCP, Nickelback, Green Day (anything was "alt." in the 90's as well as a bit of country here and there. I use it in tandem with a Wilson Ten Spot II wah, Line 6 DM-4, FM-4 and DL-4, EHX Small Stone and Electric Mistress and a Red Witch Empress Chorus. It seems to fly through these pedals well, preserving that clean tone we all aim for, while really digging deep into the effect that's used. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Comparing this guitar to a Tele and Strat that have been PLEK'ed, you can certainly tell the difference between this guitar and the other two, in terms of playability and action. Granted, most guitars will need to be re-setup due to inevitable bumps during shipping but I guess this could have been remedied by picking the guitar up for the shop (and thus playing it before buying). In saying this, it is still a guitar that feels great, it's just that I've been spoilt with other guitars that have been properly set up. The pickups sound even across the board, whereas most Strat bridges seem to have that bit more bite and volume. At first the neck felt a bit clunky to play on - the first couple of times the guitar felt too new against my other Strat and Tele. 6 months down the track though and I've either gotten used to it or it just doesn't feel as hard on the fingers. // 7

Reliability & Durability: Although this Fender would suit pretty much anything, it can surely be depended upon, especially in the scene of live gigs. I play small clubs on the basis of once a fortnight-once a month and I'd have no hesitation to take this guitar along with me. The pickups (although a little flat in some areas) provide a wide range of tones. Being a Am Deluxe Fender, the guitar feels like it's built to last. Having three guitars, although I can depend on this one, I'd always take a backup unless I broke a string (very rare), or just on the whim that I'd like to use a Tele for a few numbers. // 8

Overall Impression: Frusciante, Klinghoffer, Hendrix, May, Satriani and anything with Fender cleans. I've been playing for around 10 years, amassing a bit of gear that I cherish. I used to think I was a Fender Strat-only kinda guy... Until I got a Tele. The playability of the Tele overshadows that of the Strat, but maybe due to the fact that it's been properly set up. I still love this guitar though, sometimes you feel like playing a Strat and sometimes it's a Tele you crave, each have their strengths. My only wish would be that it'd have 24-frets but the amount of times I've actually need those last two is negligible. I'll be looking to change these pickups in the future and get it PLEK'ed and am sure it'll be a dream to play alongside the Tele. I love the contoured body against the Tele and the 5-way pickup selector instead of the 3-way in the Tele. If it were lost/stolen, I'd definitely go buy another Strat. Not sure if it'd be the Deluxe model, depends on the pickups of the said model and the prices of Am Std Strats at the time in comparison to the higher-end Strats. It's a guitar I'll always love no matter what colour. // 8

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