#1
I have a 2013 American Standard that I'm not all that happy with. It doesn't have that "throaty" strat growl from the neck pickup that is the primary reason I love this guitar so much. I'm considering selling it and getting a better model--but the issue is that I play left-handed, so I really don't get to try many models before putting cash down.

All I can really do is listen to clips on youtube but I figured it would be just as, if not more helpful to ask you guys. So is there a noticeable difference between Fender's American Standards and say, the reissue '57 and '62 models?
The deluxe strats?
Etc?

Strat lovers, which would you recommend, generally speaking?

As far as tone goes--Rory Gallagher and SRV. I play mostly original stuff but most of the time it's clean to slightly overdriven. I just love that classic strat sound--you guys know what I'm going for here.

What about in terms of playability? I'm open to pretty much everything, and I'm envious of you righties.
#2
Look at the G&L USA line.
www.glguitars.com/
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
#4
Quote by Tony Done
If you like the guitar, you might want to think about pickup swapping. I've no idea what, but a bit of research would provide answers.

I believe the Texas Specials have long been a favourite for SRV tones, for hopefully fairly self-explanatory reasons.
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#5
Quote by RyanMW2010
So is there a noticeable difference between Fender's American Standards and say, the reissue '57 and '62 models?
The deluxe strats?
Etc?

Strat lovers, which would you recommend, generally speaking?

Yes, definitely. The problem is that once you hit a certain point, the quality is stellar and you don't get 'better,' just 'different.' So it becomes hard to recommend anything since there's really very little to object to from a quality standpoint.

Playability is the same way. The neck profiles and finishes are a bit different, the hardware/plastics are different especially on the RI models, trems and tuners and frets etc are all just...different. I can't handle a very flat board, but if you like it then that's a good data point. It just doesn't mean anything for me to suggest one guitar over the other because I like the smaller radius, you know?

In gross generalizations, the Deluxe Strats are agreeable across the board. There's a reason they're the "Better Standard" model, they've been given features that aren't too extreme or divisive and some nice, conservative upgrades. The Reissues on the other hand have some historically accurate idiosyncrasies that might make or break your opinion. They don't have "Standard Thin C" neck profiles, they've got old-school truss rods, trems, plastics, pickups etc. They're very well made and they tend to sound and feel fantastic but they have some features that might annoy you if you're used to a modern strat.
#6
First of all, tone is not what I would call a quality concern primarily. The American Standard is a nice instrument all over and you won't notice any huge improvement over that line when it comes to quality.

The American Deluxe have some added modern features, and is mainly differed from the Standard by noiseless pickups (probably not what you're looking for at all), and a compound radius fingerboard. The American Vintage Series sheds improvements made over the last 60 years or so, and you will have trouble adjusting if you're used to an American Standard playability wise - trust me.

By what you've written, it sounds like you're fumbling in the dark for something that is both vague and most likely unrelated to anything that has to do with the guitar. If it still happened to be the guitar, a pickup swap should fix it easily.

But I don't think you will get what you're searching for in either new pickups or another Strat. If it's a tone issue, it's in the amp. What amp are you playing? You won't come near a particular sound if you have a completely different voiced amp. That's far more important than the guitar.

And, as many musicians like to point out - tone is in the fingers. In the playing itself.

(Just adding that owning 2 American Standard and an American Deluxe, I don't recognize the issue at all. The Customshop Fat 50's sounds exactly like a classic Strat pickup to me.)
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Last edited by HomerSGR at May 28, 2015,
#7
I would be inclined to say that you need to look into some different pickups. My assumption would be that you aren't a new guitarist who just so happened to buy an American Strat for your first guitar. Which would mean that in general, you are likely to be happy with the amp that you have.

Fender of course makes a lot of different pickups. Also consider the other big producers like Dimarzio and Seymour Duncan. Luther Lee and other small winders are out there as well. You have a ton of options to work with. Don't ditch the guitar unless it doesn't feel right in your hands or has serious craftsmanship flaws. Do some homework and price shopping, and I think you'll find what you're looking for.
Gear: Gibson Les Paul Studio, Gibson SG Special, Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, Fender Jazzmaster, Gretsch Pro Jet, Carvin C350, Epiphone ES-339 P90, Epiphone ES-335 Pro. Peavey 6505, Sovtek MIG-100, Vox AC30, Peavey XXX.
#8
Quote by HomerSGR
First of all, tone is not what I would call a quality concern primarily. The American Standard is a nice instrument all over and you won't notice any huge improvement over that line when it comes to quality.

The American Deluxe have some added modern features, and is mainly differed from the Standard by noiseless pickups (probably not what you're looking for at all), and a compound radius fingerboard. The American Vintage Series sheds improvements made over the last 60 years or so, and you will have trouble adjusting if you're used to an American Standard playability wise - trust me.

By what you've written, it sounds like you're fumbling in the dark for something that is both vague and most likely unrelated to anything that has to do with the guitar. If it still happened to be the guitar, a pickup swap should fix it easily.

But I don't think you will get what you're searching for in either new pickups or another Strat. If it's a tone issue, it's in the amp. What amp are you playing? You won't come near a particular sound if you have a completely different voiced amp. That's far more important than the guitar.

And, as many musicians like to point out - tone is in the fingers. In the playing itself.

(Just adding that owning 2 American Standard and an American Deluxe, I don't recognize the issue at all. The Customshop Fat 50's sounds exactly like a classic Strat pickup to me.)



I tried to quote just the part about amps, but I failed. I have a Peavey Delta Blues 115. I only ever use the clean channel. I don't love it, per se, but I preferred it over the other amps in its price range that I tried, namely the Fender Blues Jr., Blues Deluxe, and one of the Blackstar Amps.

As far as the tone being in the fingers--for sure, I definitely agree with that--but this guitar doesn't always "feel" right to me, and that's largely because of the sound I get out of it. You know how when you're getting a tone you really love, it actually makes your playing "feel" better? I don't now how better to really describe it.

I've looked into Klein pickups and I really like some of those, so I've considered that, but I also wonder if it's also a playability issue. I've had a bunch of issues with this guitar that you can see if you go through my posting history. It's been in and out of various shops for setups and it's had various issues that I hadn't encountered before. I'm not sure if it's just being a left-handed player, but I've had absolutely terrible luck with guitars in the past. The only guitar I've ever played that I've truly been impressed by is my Taylor 214 acoustic guitar. I have literally never in my life played an electric guitar and thought "wow, this is the one."
#9
Quote by RyanMW2010
I have a Peavey Delta Blues 115.



There's your issue. What year is your Strat?
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#11
Quote by Ippon
2013.

RyanMW2010, Vox AC30 and/or Fender Twin or Bassman and some kind of treble boost.


Treble boost for that Rory sound?

Hmmm. That will give me that throaty SRV neck tone? I play mostly at home but I want something capable of being played with a drummer--maybe I should look into some sort of attenuator also?

I actually had my eye on this one a while ago ...http://www.musiciansfriend.com/amplifiers-effects/fender-68-custom-deluxe-reverb-22w-1x12-tube-guitar-combo-amp-with-celestion-g12v-70-speaker
Last edited by RyanMW2010 at May 28, 2015,
#12
Most people don't need an attenuator with a DR. Much better amp for your purposes.

Of course if you just got a lemon guitar, you're still not all fixed with a new amp.

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#13
Sorry, missed that portion of the OP quite clearly!

The Fat 50's are pretty great pickups. If you like those tones, I don't think a pickup swap is your answer. I have one of those 68' Custom's in my shop right now. Fantastic amp.
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#14
Quote by JustRooster
Sorry, missed that portion of the OP quite clearly!

The Fat 50's are pretty great pickups. If you like those tones, I don't think a pickup swap is your answer. I have one of those 68' Custom's in my shop right now. Fantastic amp.


Really? Man. Maybe it's my amp, then. I find the Neck pickup (my favorite tone traditionally) pretty mediocre, same goes for the Middle pickup. Position 4 is ugly and the Bridge pickup and position 2 are completely tinny and disgustingly thin sounding. Unusable, in my opinion.
#15
pickup change may help but perhaps examinig your current setup may do more. rory used a vox ac-30 with a treble booster. SRV used fender, marshall and dumble amps with a tubescreamer. the Peavey you mentioned won't sound like an ac-30 and perhaps with a tubescreamer will kinda get you SRV.

has your strat been setup lately. something as simple as adjusting the pickup height may change your tone.
#16
as far as american teles go there is a difference. (my strats are both MIM)

my USA std is very nice all around, the frets feel really nice and the board has a nice gentle roll on the edge. the neck is comfortable, nice all around.

my USA Tele Plus: Series II is a old and relatively rare bird. it is the precursor to the deluxe series, and IMO they are better than the deluxes. it is a nashville model (three pickup) all lace pickups from the factory. the neck is super comfortable and it sings magically.

my 52AVRI (Tele) is amazing. if you aren't looking for modern features, the AVRI's IMO are the way to go. the finish is really nice on them, the pickups are really nice as well. the neck is pretty fat, and the fretjob is heavenly, and if you want authenticity of the past, thats what you want. no touch is missing. my 52AVRI has all regular (non phillips) screws and everything is just like the vintige models.

FWIW, i have played a good number of 50's and 60's strats and teles, a local older guy has them that he got new back then or bought them way back. they are all very used, you can tell that some are on their third or fourth refert. honestly they aren't magical, just old. if value wasn't different, i would take an AVRI over something from the 50's or 60's. the mojo is there on the vintage fenders, but they aren't built as well.

as far as the AVRI's go, you won't like one if you don't want vintage appointments. i use my teles for blues and blues/rock, and i am not looking for all of the bells and whistles on the MIA deluxe series, i like it more traditional. but if you do want to have all the creature comfors of a modern guitar, you would want a deluxe model.
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