#1
Hi there, ive recently been searching for a new guitar to buy and ive been checking out the Squier Jazzmaster on Thomman.com, the problem is that i only find this model in the baritone guitars section, and since baritone guitars are made to be toned down im affraid i might buy one by accident.How do i difference one from another?

Btw help me figure out what guitar to buy please, Thanks!   

https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1745636#4
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#2
Manufacturers have a tendency to call any guitars with a scale length of 26.5" or more a "baritone." That's the major difference.
There's nothing to keep you from tuning these guitars to E standard (and, in fact, I've done so and Jim Soloway's "Swan" series of guitar has done so as well).
They're NOT necessarily meant to be tuned down simply because they have, say, a 27" scale.
The longer the scale, the more articulate (defined as the ability to hear one note distinctly from the other) the bottom end becomes. It's like a grand piano's bottom five keys compared to the same keys on a small spinet. You can barely hear the difference at all on the spinet. So if you DO have a guitar tuned lower than normal, the bottom end will sound clearer on the longer scale instrument (pickups allowing, of course).

Baritone isn't a specific tuning, BTW. There are a lot of variations available that call themselves "baritone tuning."

Nonetheless, to answer your question: the main thing you want to look for that will help you distinguish a baritone guitar from a standard guitar is a longer scale. 25.5" is usually considered a standard guitar scale, 27"-28" is often referred to as a baritone scale, no matter where you actually tune the guitar.
#3
dspellman Thanks! But, the thing is, my guitar teacher told me that if you tune a baritone guitar on e, the neck might bend over time, is this true?
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#4
Quote by tomas1909
dspellman Thanks! But, the thing is, my guitar teacher told me that if you tune a baritone guitar on e, the neck might bend over time, is this true?


No.
#5
Quote by tomas1909
dspellman Thanks! But, the thing is, my guitar teacher told me that if you tune a baritone guitar on e, the neck might bend over time, is this true?


I doubt it would be a problem, at least partly because you would be using fairly thin strings. - I've had my 30"bari tuned to open D with 13-56 strings, which is a very high tension, with no adverse effects. The longer scale is a trade-off, they can sound more articulate (mine certainly does), as dspellman says, but the wider fret spacing may be a disadvantage. You can always tune down and use a capo to get E standard tuning.

I just checked Thomann. I'm not sure why a squier jazzmaster would be in the bari section it has a 25.5"(648mm) scale:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/fender_sq_affinity_jazzmaster_blk.htm?ref=search_prv_8
Last edited by Tony Done at May 31, 2017,
#6
Quote by Tony Done

I just checked Thomann. I'm not sure why a squier jazzmaster would be in the bari section it has a 25.5"(648mm) scale:

https://www.thomann.de/gb/fender_sq_affinity_jazzmaster_blk.htm?ref=search_prv_8

Squier does do a baritone Jazzmaster, which might be what OP found (though funnily enough I can't find that one on Thomann right now), but there are definitely other Squier JMs available. It could also just be a database error, where somebody tagged it in the wrong section.

OP, if you're liking the Jazzmaster design and your budget's in the Squier range, I'd recommend going with either the Deluxe or J Mascis models. The Vintage Modified Jazzmasters have more of a neat classic vibe, but the bridges on them are not good, at all; it's really easy to knock the strings out of the grooves in the saddles, and there's not really a drop-in replacement or any kind of fix that's both affordable and effective. The Deluxe and J Mascis Jazzmasters, on the other hand, have Tuneomatic-style bridges that eliminate that problem.

https://www.thomannmusic.com/fender_jmascis_jazzmaster.htm
https://www.thomannmusic.com/fender_squier_dlx_jazzmaster_trem_car.htm

Full disclosure, I haven't played the Deluxe JM yet, but I believe the only real difference apart from the finish is that the Deluxe has vintage-voiced pickups while the J Mascis has P-90s in Jazzmaster housings; I'm a fan of both pickup styles, it's just down to what you're looking for out of the guitar. I'm not a fan of the pickguards, either, but those are an easy swap.