A 'fast neck' is a neck in which it seems as if it's easier to play with speed. You may not that you feel like you play faster on an electric guitar versus an acoustic, for example. That percepted sense of speed is what they're saying.

Most people define some flatter, thinner necks are being faster, such as Ibanez or Jackson. Play something like that side by side with a hollowbody guitar and you'll feel the difference. You may note that you have an easier time playing faster one or the other.
A “fast neck” is usually thin from from to back, wide from side to side, has a nearly flat fretboard radius, and jumbo frets. In this case fast is relative to shreddy rock leads; these necks are not necessarily fast for other playing styles.
one other common characteristics is a satin finished neck, and quite a few also have natural finished neck. neither are requirements but they are common.
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"fast neck" is not an objective term for anything really, it's just a way people describe a neck that makes it easy for them to play fast lead phrases on.

I think the term "fast neck" is more of a marketing thing though, along with most of the other bizarre adjectives guitarists use - for example Hagstrom's catalogs in the late 1970s claimed their guitars had "the fastest necks in the world", although I'm not sure if that was where it originated from, they may have picked it up from somewhere else.
I like analogue Solid State amps that make no effort to be "tube-like", and I'm proud of it...

...A little too proud, to be honest.
i dont think its about SPEED. i think it is about easy of playing. you are going to play faster on a guitar that you play easier. generally when people want to play fast, they are playing shred or faster paced music. that is justa genre that fits the need.

i would say that a marketed product like an ibanez wizard neck is certainly catering towards people playing single note, fast lead scales opposed to heavy chords though.

but in general, if i pick up a guitar and it plays like butter, and i feel like my hand can "fly on it", i would call it fast.

i also think fast = quality because if if it plays well and feels good, it probably has a sense of quality about it.

i mean, does anybody want a guitar that plays "Slow"? is that good for anybody?
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i mean, does anybody want a guitar that plays "Slow"? is that good for anybody?

People tend to call thin necks "fast" but in reality neck thickness is all about what you are comfortable with. Some people like thin, others medium or fat.

What I consider more important is the finish on the neck. If the neck is really glossy and grippy (at worst it can feel like you are trying to glide your thumb on window glass) it may hinder your speed especially if your technique is lacking where satin neck allows your thumb to glide on it without much resistance. Problem is satin texture eventually wears of and becomes glossy so it needs some fixing (very fine steelwool) from time to time if you want to keep it that way.

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Last edited by MaaZeus at Mar 18, 2014,