'57 Stratocaster Review

manufacturer: Fender date: 11/09/2012 category: Electric Guitars
Fender: '57 Stratocaster
2005 Fender Japan 1957 Reissue Stratocaster. 21 vintage frets, 1 piece D-shape maple neck with a 7 1/2" radius.
 Sound: 9.4
 Overall Impression: 9.4
 Reliability & Durability: 9.2
 Action, Fit & Finish: 9.4
 Features: 9.6
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
reviews (5) 67 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9
'57 Stratocaster Reviewed by: unregistered, on november 09, 2012
5 of 6 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 805.2

Purchased from: Rockers

Features: 2005 Fender Japan 1957 Reissue Stratocaster. 21 Vintage frets, 1 piece D-shape maple neck with a 7 1/2" radius. 3 piece alder body finished in tobbaco burst (2-tone sunburst). 1 ply white 8-screw pickguard. Fender Vintage 6 point non-locking tremelo. 3 single coil US Fender Vintage pickups. 1 volume control, 2 tone. 5-way Switch. Kulson tuners, 1 string tree. Purchased from Rockers, London in August 2005. Currently fitted with Ernie Ball Hybrid Slinky strings, originally a set of Fender 9's. No official accessories, but I got a fitted flight case thrown in for another 40. A small ding on the body (hardly visible) reduced the retail price by 10 from 450. // 9

Sound: I mainly play blues, modern rock/indie, and jazz through a Peavey Bandit Transtube 112 (an equally versatile amp) with various effects (delay, compression, Big Muff, wah). This is a very versatile guitar, the strength of the Stratocaster. The neck pickup is mellow and warm, perfect for those slow Gilmour-esque blues leads. The 2nd and 4th positions are funky and tight, with the middle setting producing a nice rhythm sound. The bridge pickup is brighter, with more treble, less bass and suits crunchy distortion very well. These are Vintage style pickups so they are not high output, not that this guitar can't be loud. This is definately not a metal player's ideal choice, it is more suitable for blues, country, jazz and rock (it is after all a 1957 design). The tone is most impressive clean, or with just a hint of distortion. You can get spot on Hendrix, Gilmour, Knopfler and many other famous player's sounds depending on your amplifier. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar came set up well, although the tremolo was flush with the body. I personally wanted to have a two way trem so I raised it, and reset the guitar, but it plays very well indeed and the 7 1/2 radius neck is very comfortable. The pickups were set far too low. I'm not sure on the ideal height but having checked Fender's recommendations they are now much higher and the tone and volume has improved considerably. The tremolo action is incredibly smooth, using 3 springs. The fit and finish is extremely high quality. People often mistake Japanese Fenders as the middle ground between Mexican and American models, but this is not the case. This uses the same hardware and pickups as US Strat and has equal if not better finish quality. Fender ceased officially selling Japanese models in Europe due to their being too competitive in terms of quality with the US models. You really are getting the same quality for half the price because the USA are having to increase their labour effort to produce the same quality as the more efficient Japanese manufacture, and this cost is then passed on to you. Everything else is fine and will last longer than I will. The finish is tough enough, but look after it and there will be minimal scratches, mine are barely visible hairlines on the back from play, only visible under light. // 9

Reliability & Durability: I have gigged with this without back-up and it was fine. I haven't broken a string and it stays in tune very well for a Vintage style guitar. I've fitted strap-locks for added security (even though I don't hurl it around or anything) but the standard strap buttons were very solid. The hardware is fine, no problems, the fit of the knobs, pickguard and switching is good and the Switch is smooth with no noise between shifts. The pickups are quite noisy but this is the case with all single coil instruments, hence the invention of humbuckers and Lace sensors. As long as you roll off the volume when you need to then it's not a problem. // 9

Overall Impression: Overall this a top quality instrument, far superior to the Mexican equivalent and easily on par with the American models. The finish is flawless on my example, the neck is very comfortable and, although laquered, it is never sticky just silky smooth. I haven't had any problems with this guitar, it will last me indefinately. I would definately replace it with an identical model were it lost or stolen. Incidently I was originally after a Telecaster or a Jazzmaster, but this is far more versatile and outplayed them. Yes, they're everywhere but until I owned my own Stratocaster I didn't realise how personal they become. I'm not planning on altering or modding this in any way, I wanted the pure '50s Vintage approach, which in my opinion is the peak of Stratocaster design. // 9

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overall: 9.4
'57 Stratocaster Reviewed by: Zooropean11, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 800

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Features: My guitar is a 2002 (if I'm not mistaken) made in U.S.A. model, with 22 Standard frets on a maple fretboard (I'm not a big fan of rosewood fretboards), Heritage cherry color, transparent finish, classic Strat bridge, a 5-way selector switch, 3 standard issue single coil pickups, and classic Fender tuners. // 10

Sound: I am a fan of classic rock, and play just about anything originating from that genre. This guitar is the very essence of classic rock in my humble opinion. My influences include Mark Knopfler, Ritchie Blackmore, Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix, and the list goes on and on. This guitar is perfectly well suited to my style of music. I run it through a Marshall MG30DFX amp and use a Marshall Guv'nor GV-2 pedal, which I think suit's it just fine. Obviously, because of the single coil pickups, it has a very bright sound to it, and the bridge pickup sounds amazing with distortion, very agressive. On the other hand, I can get a Slash sound out of it on the neck pickup. I can't say however, if it has a good sound on a clean channel because my amp is a piece of s**t and the guitar doesn't work well on it (on a clean channel, of course). The only style it can't play is metal (by metal I mean Metallica and thrash metal in general, not NWOBHM). It's truly one of the most versatile guitars out there. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The guitar was set up ideally. It had no problems what'soever! Those people in Corona know what they're doing! No Factory flaws on it, but I myself have nicked it a few times. There is honestly nothing that I can complain about, and believe me, I complain a lot. I myself have adjusted the pickups numerous times in order to get the sound I'm looking for. It hasn't had anything happen to it. // 9

Reliability & Durability: This guitar will withstand just about anything you throw at it! Or on it, for that matter. As I mentioned above, I've had this guitar for two years and it hasn't had any major (or minor) problems. The hardware is rock solid, and looks like it will last a very long time. The pickups are as good as new and there's not a hint of oxidization. The strap buttons are perfectly reliable. I say this because it has only come loose once. This guitar is the ideal guitar to take to a gig without a backup, without a doubt. I would know, as I have already done so. I play on average about 1.5 hours a day and can safely say that, if you don't take vitriol and spray the guitar with it, the finish will last a long time indeed! // 9

Overall Impression: As I have mentioned before, I have a Marshall MG30DFX amp and a Marshall Guv'nor GV-2 pedal. I honestly wish I had not bought a transistor amp because it just doesn't suit my guitar. I feel it deserves better. I have been playing for about 3 years now and the guitar I had before this one, a Squier Strat, was inferior in each and every way. Would I buy it again? No, I would seek out the person Who stole it, kill them, and then retrieve it. Failing that, then yes, I would buy another, exact same model. I compared it to an Ibanez (can't remember which model), a Gibson SG, and a Fender Tele. For my style of music, this guitar was the one and only. At the shop, it cost around 1000$ but I got it for about 200$ off, a bargain in my opinion! If you're an aspiring classic rock musician, then this is the guitar for you! // 9

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overall: 10
'57 Stratocaster Reviewed by: hazardmaster, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1142

Purchased from: Misicworks

Features: Made in Japan, 21 jumbo frets. Has Standard closed tuners (which are extremely good quality). I got mine in 2-tone sunburst, looks beautiful. I was looking at this guitar or an Epiphone Les Paul, but the Strat's 3 single coil pickups and double cutaways attracted me to buy it. 2 tone control knobs and 1 volume knob. I got some Schaller strap locks and a Shubb capo with this guitar, and an Ashton hard case all for this guitar's list price. The guitar originally came with a gig bag but I bought a hard case for it, so what happens to the gig bag? Shouldn't I get like 30 bucks off since I don't get the gig bag? Stupid of me not asking. If you're buying a guitar and it comes with a gig bag, but you are buying a hard case with it, make sure you try get a discount if you are not given the gig bag. // 10

Sound: This is a very versatile guitar, I use it with my combo amp: Vox Valvetronix AD15VT. The pickups are amazing. I can get any type of sound I want with this guitar. I mainly play punk rock, alternative, modern rock etc and I love the sound that I get from this beast. If you play metal, alternative, classic rock, jazz, country, whatever! This guitar easily plays all genres of music. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: The pickups had a bit of black stuff (no idea what) on them which I just wiped off with a tissue. The jack input screw was a little bit loose but I simply used some tweezers to tighen it up. Good as new now. Apart from this the guitar is flawless, plays amazingly, looks beautiful. It is stunning. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This guitar will last a very long time. I, due to my lack of care for it, have already given it a few dings. I would play this guitar without a backup, it is extremely reliable. The strap buttons hold solid, fit strap locks into this thing and nothing will make them come off. Will this guitar widthstand a Live gig? Heck yeah! It's bomb-proof. I treasure this guitar and I hope to have many more great years to come with it. // 10

Overall Impression: Overall, I am extremely impressed with this guitar and have absolutely no regrets buying it. I am very lucky to have come across it and I sure am glad I bought this guitar. It's perfect for me! It will play any type of music you want, if this guitar were stolen/lost I would buy it right again if I could manage to find the exact same model in 2-tone sunburst. I absolutely love this guitar, to those out there reading this and thinking about buying it, buy it! Heck, buy two! These guitars are amazing Japanese quality (I think the Japanese are better crafters than the Americans.) The only difference between American and Japanese guitars are the American ones are made by American hands. I definitely urge you to at the least play this guitar, try it out. I am completely satisfied with every aspect of this guitar, and I am sure glad I found it. // 10

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overall: 10
'57 Stratocaster Reviewed by: WashingtonsNext, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1100

Purchased from: eBay

Features: This particular (master)piece was crafted in the U.S. of A in 1998 and it's creamy and delicious. It come equipped with 21 frets and a V neck (excellent) pretty standart in terms of thickness; not really fat or slim. The nitrocelluolose finish resonates real well along with the one piece Alder body. I love the Sunburst finish, for some reason I have always loved the way Sunburst looked with a Maple neck/fretboard. The bridge is Standard Vintage tremolo that actually holds tuning rather well. I love the way the Kluson tuners look as well. Everything on this guitar is stock with the exception of a five way toggle Switch. It came with the C&G case. // 10

Sound: I can play just about any style I would like to on this thing, and I do. I play a lot of Eric Johnson-esque material, Blues, Jazz, Rock'n'Roll, and Country (chicken pickin'/Jerry Reed kind of thing). I play it through a Marshall 1987X with a Vox Wah, Dallas Arbiter Fuzz Face, B.K. Butler Tube Driver, and a Boss DS-1 that I took apart and rebuilt. Also through a Fender Twin Reverb with a Maestro Echoplex, and Electro-Harmonix Memory Man delay. Of course there is noise with the single coils but it doesn't bother me after 10 years of playing Strats. I play all of the aforementiond styles with no problem achieving the appropriate tones to accomodate. // 10

Action, Fit & Finish: Again, it was bought used so the setup was pretty decent. I did have to raise the action but easily done, no promlems. The pickups were not to my liking, but to each his own right? I had to add an additional spring. No flaws except for the strings that came on it (rusty, corroded 9-52's gross) other than that, this thing was in prestine condition. // 10

Reliability & Durability: This guitar has no problem with Live playing. How do I know? I have played three Live shows with it, it has no problems. The hardware is excellent, the strap buttons are great it is quite dependable I actually played an entire "Dire Straits tribute" concert type thing using this guitar on all but two songs with no structural or tuning problems. // 10

Overall Impression: I have been playing for ten years and this instrument would definitely have no problem finding it's way onto the list of the ten best guitars I have ever played, if it were lost or stolen it might be awhile but I would hope to acquire another, although it would never be the same. I love everything about this guitar, there is so much diversity in the three pickups, and the neck is just great. // 10

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overall: 8.6
'57 Stratocaster Reviewed by: shihad99, on november 09, 2012
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Features: 05/06 Fender Japan 57 reissue. Vintage white, DiMarzio collection stamped pickups, c shape maple neck and fretboard with Vintage style lacquer finish, Vintage frets, 5 way Switch, gotoh tuners, etc etc. Came with all the tags and what not as well as trem bar and carry bag. // 9

Sound: I play a bit of everything. Using it currently through a Fender 15 watt amp. has a very very good clean tone on each pcikup, very brights sound. It also handles dirty sounds well with these pickups, which I think are the higher of the jap made. pickups are also quite noiseless. handles delay, distortion, wah very well too. // 8

Action, Fit & Finish: Since it was second hand I don't really know any of these. But the bloke who had it before kept it in mint condition, basically Brand New. No rust or any where on it. all the elctronics are well built and frets in great condition. the action is set well, however I think it will take some time to get use to 'Vintage' style frets as they make bending a bit harder. I currently have 10's on but might move to 9's to improve this. // 9

Reliability & Durability: "Reliability & Durability" is very good haven't played live but sure it would handle it with ease. the finish seems very good as welll as the hardware. the strap buttons are very solid. of course if you were to gig you would take a second guitar as backup but this would be your number 1 guitar. // 8

Overall Impression: I've been trying to play guitar for 6 years. I owned a squire before this for that period and always wanted an american standard but this came up for less than half there price. these are very good guitars and match it with american strats in my opinion. I have played some mexican made standards and they are no where near the quality of this guitar. The only problem I see with it are the Vintage style frets, which I'm slowly getting use too. Gilmour and clapton use these frets so they must be ok. This guitar was a complete bargain and if I were in japan I would bring a few of these home with me as you can't seem to find them anywhere and I was lucky this came up. // 9

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