other than just where they are made are there any major playable differences in these telecasters?
The USA has a better trem bridge if that is important to you. I hardtailed mine so no biggie. Both are very gig quality guitars.
"Your sound is in your hands as much as anything. It's the way you pick, and the way you hold the guitar, more than it is the amp or the guitar you use." -- Stevie Ray Vaughan

"Anybody can play. The note is only 20 percent. The attitude of the motherfucker who plays it is 80 percent." -- Miles Davis

Guthrie on tone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmohdG9lLqY
Quote by LivinJoke84
MIM are made in Mexico by Mexicans

MIA are made in America by Mexicans

The differences are in smaller bits, usually. However, since the recent change in MIA Teles in 2012, there are a couple things to note. The MIA has a new belly contour cut that makes being a Tele player far more comfortable. The woods used are also of better quality, so it will allow for things like better sustain.

The MIA also comes with a Micro-tilt neck, which gives you a far better ability to set up the guitar and get it dialed in perfectly. With Bolt-ons, the relationship of the neck/body bond is crucial to feel/setup.

Other hardware bits differ in the fact that the MIA is a real bone nut whereas the MIM is a plastic bit of crap. The USA also comes with the Broadcaster in the bridge and the Twisted Tele in the neck, which are FANTASTIC pickups. The Broadcaster is one of my favorites for tele bridges.

If it makes a difference to you, the USA is a Urethan seal, whereas the MIM is a Polyester. The difference in sound is negligible, if even decipherable, but the difference made is that the MIA will actually age into something more Fender-esque and sexy, where as the MIM will be that same color forever and ever.

Other electronics, tuners, and bridge are essentially the same. There's no question that the MIA is a better guitar. Coming from me, who works as a setup tech and a guitar sales dude, the Micro-tilt and Bi-flex truss rod make a big difference.

Which would I recommend for you? Neither. Get a G&L ASAT.
Last edited by JustRooster at Jun 25, 2014,
Go play them and see for yourself. I mean the American will play better and sound better but if you want to feel/hear the differences you need to look yourself because they can't really be explained in words...
Quote by Cajundaddy
The USA has a better trem bridge if that is important to you. I hardtailed mine so no biggie. Both are very gig quality guitars.

I would think that neither would have a trem???
Quote by CodChick

Seriously, I'm not a fan of iphones and guitars mixing.

I'm guessing he's talking about the strat
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Quote by K33nbl4d3
I'll have to put the Classic T models on my to-try list. Shame the finish options there are Anachronism Gold, Nuclear Waste and Aged Clown, because in principle the plaintop is right up my alley.

Quote by K33nbl4d3
Presumably because the CCF (Combined Corksniffing Forces) of MLP and Gibson forums would rise up against them, plunging the land into war.

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Et tu, br00tz?