#1
Hey guys! So, I've owned my Epi Les Paul and Squier strat for about 8 years now. I figure it's time to upgrade to a new electric.

I'm pretty set on getting a Fender Telecaster right now. I played the FSR Standard Ash tele at guitar center today and liked it a lot, felt nice, sounded pretty good (although the amp was a digital line 6 of some sort, but I breifly tried it through a hot rod deluxe).

Could anyone comment on this guitar? Is the FSR any good? How does it compare to a standard MIM model tele?
http://www.guitarcenter.com/Fender-FSR-Standard-Ash-Telecaster-Electric-Guitar-H72859-i1858007.gc

My other option is to get a Classic Series Telecaster, or a Baja Telecaster. I feel like these would be a bit higher quality, but I couldn't find one in the store and I don't know if I'll get a chance to play one before buying. Whereas I know I liked the FSR tele, and it's cheaper (I can spend the extra money on some new pedals).

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/fender-classic-series-50s-telecaster-electric-guitar

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/fender-classic-series-classic-player-baja-telecaster-electric-guitar

My budget is around $800. I want to get a nice guitar that will last a long time. I don't plan to buy another for a while, and this will likely be my main axe.

So, any opinions on these would be much appreciated. And if you guys have other suggestions in this price range, I'd appreciate that too.

Many thanks!
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#2
Meh, those (I believe) are all Mexican made, therefore pretty expensive. For $800 you could find a used American made Fender, which would not only be better right off the bat, but also keep it's value. You buy one of those MIM Fenders, and you're looking at a resell value of about $300.

Plus I like he 22nd fret you get with the American series.
#3
I personally never cared for Fender guitars- their quality is top notch, to be sure, but they never feel right in my hands.

OTOH, G&L makes Tele-shaped guitars that are of comperable quality. Look at their ASAT models. http://www.glguitars.com/index.asp

Reverend makes a few guitars that are inspired by the Tele, but have their own unique features, like a korina body. A few options can be seen here: http://reverendguitars.com/reverend/guitars/bolt_on_series.html

Dillion USA has a few models that are Tele inspired, including a thinline semihollow: http://www.dillionguitars.com/guitar/electric/
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Last edited by dannyalcatraz at Nov 14, 2012,
#4
'FSR' is Fender Special Run, and all it means is that it's a finish or minor spec change that is exclusive to a particular shop. The difference between the ash body of that FSR and the alder body of a regular MIM Standard is negligible and you're basically just paying for the ''prestige'' of being able to say "I bought something from Guitar Center", as if that is special in any way.

The Baja Tele isn't built better, it simply has an older-style, V-shape neck that many people prefer, higher-quality stock pickups and expanded switching options. Thing is, it doesn't sound or feel like a common Tele. If a typical Tele feel or tone is what you're after then the Baja won't really do what you want.

The Classic is kind of the same deal. It's a MIM Standard with the 'vintage' 7.25" radius and Kluson-style tuners. For most people, these are actually going to be downgrades.


If you're okay with buying something second hand, you could get an MIJ or MIA Fender for that kind of money. Alternatively, buying new and online, if you shop around you can find all manner of Classic Player and Deluxe models which might suit you better than the very-specialised Classic 50s and Baja models. Or grab a regular MIM Standard and use the leftover money for some pickups that will really suit what you play, or a couple of new pedals or just pocket it - even the basic MIM Standard is a pretty good guitar.
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#6
TS, the FSR Ash Tele was one that I used to own. I got a gem, and it was great. However I've played 2 others, and they were both trash. MIM Telecasters are hit or miss.

Someone linked to Dillon guitars above. Dillon guitars are actually pretty quality I've read from some online reviews. People have compared their build quality to CIJ equivalents, and the Custom Shop to some better Fender stuff. I've never personally played one, though, so I don't have any first hand experience.

If you have an $800, then a lot of used options come available. You can get a used Standard Telecaster from Fender, a lot of new options with the American Special, or pretty much any new Tribute series from G&L. I actually am more partial to G&L ASAT's than Fender Telecasters myself. Here's some G&L's that $800 would buy you:

http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/TributeSeries/guitars/ASAT_Classic_new/index.asp
http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/TributeSeries/guitars/ASAT_Classic_BBSH_new/index.asp
http://www.glguitars.com/instruments/TributeSeries/guitars/ASAT_Special_new/index.asp

Quote by EyeNon15
Thats too bad, I was under the impression I was arguing something profound


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#7
Well, I have a MIM Standard Tele and I honestly think it plays like a dream. It could do with some new pickups, and I think I may have to end up poking around inside to just tune it up really, but I bought mine second hand, and I don't think the previous owner treated it particularly well.

All in all, obviously just try as many different ones as you can and find what you like best, but my vote will go for the MIM and buy a few pedals or pickups as someone before mentioned
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#9
Get a classic vibe squier, I have one and I've had a friend who plays an american tele say it played and sounded better. They are cheaper too if you aren't looking to commit to buying a $800 tele right of the bat.
#10
I was also going to suggest a Classic Vibe - good selection (including a thinline), and with the money you save you can either get another guitar, or a new amp
#11
Quote by drdecibel
I was also going to suggest a Classic Vibe - good selection (including a thinline), and with the money you save you can either get another guitar, or a new amp

Squier is really the best bang for the buck lately, between the true jaguars and jazzmasters, the classic vibes, and those tasty tele deluxes they are really making strides in the quality and variety of sub-$400 guitars.
#12
Yeah, I second the Squire classic vibe thinline. I have a Fender MIM FSR in butterscotch. Its a nice guitar and really spanky but the fret ends are a bit sharp on both sides all the way up.
#14
In all honesty, I'd recommend you get a second hand G&L ASAT. They generally outperform Fender. Generally.
#15
Deff a G&L over a Fender
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
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#16
Quote by Robbgnarly
Deff a G&L over a Fender

Seems they've improved in popularity over Fender since I left here! They're damn fine guitars! Though Fender are still very good.
#17
Quote by Banjocal
Seems they've improved in popularity over Fender since I left here! They're damn fine guitars! Though Fender are still very good.

popularity has nothing to do with it
I feel that G&L has a better build quality. Even the import Tribute series use the same hardware and pickups as the USA G&L line.

And they play really nice
2002 PRS CE22
2013 G&L ASAT Deluxe
2009 Epiphone G-400 (SH-4)
Marshall JCM2000 DSL100
Krank 1980 Jr 20watt
Krank Rev 4x12 (eminence V12)
GFS Greenie/Digitech Bad Monkey
Morley Bad Horsie 2
MXR Smart Gate
#18
Quote by Robbgnarly
popularity has nothing to do with it
I feel that G&L has a better build quality. Even the import Tribute series use the same hardware and pickups as the USA G&L line.

And they play really nice
Well, it kind of does. Quality isn't as important a thing to someone without a reference.

Last time I visited people weren't particularly fussed about G&L bar a couple of fanboys. Now their incredible quality seems to be more appreciated/known.
#19
what a lot of people don't know but maybe starting to figure out G&L (guitars by Leo Fender) is that G&L still has/uses some of the original equipment that Leo was using in the 50's ..... their all custom made , you can buy a new custom made G&L for what a Fender American Standard cost, obviously there is no comparison between the two as G&L wins hands down .....

but don't tell anybody , its real nice to be able to pick up a used G&L way way cheaper than a Fender , if we keep to ourselves it will be our own little secret that will be good for years to come
#20
here's a link to a couple pict's form G&L's factory

http://www.guitarsbyleo.com/

for some reason it won't let me direct link , go to the Forum then click on "G&L porn" and then click on the "Some more G&L factory photos from Dave" and you can see some of the old equipment (still being used) that I was refering too next to some modern CNC machines
Last edited by Fumble fingers at Apr 21, 2013,
#21
I'm so glad I got the ball rolling G&L ASAT over Fender Tele revolution on UG.

Quote by EyeNon15
Thats too bad, I was under the impression I was arguing something profound


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#22
I've got a Fender American Standard and it's excellent. I briefly owned a MIM and it was fantastic as well, but traded it for a MIM HSS Strat on impulse.

I was really considering a Baja Tele for awhile, but decided to save for the Am. Std.
#23
Personally I would go for the fsr.

What I like to do with fenders is buy the standard ones and mod the crap out of them so I get exactly what I want. Instead of just close enough