Price paid: $ 349
Purchased from: Musicians Friend
Sound — 10
I play rockabilly, blues and southern boogie - anything from the Grateful Dead, to the Allmans, to Skynyrd to the Stones. This is really the perfect guitar for what I play. The sound is very bright. I am using a Line 6 Spider amp, just 15 watts for now, and its way too loud for a living room when its turned all the way up. If you want it to make metal sounds like Cream or Hendrix, you can do that with the amp. Teles are known for their versatility. I suggest you spend your money on a really good amp,
Overall Impression — 10
I am 52 and I have been playing off and on since I was 13 years old. I was in working band in college but its mostly been for my own pleasure ever since. If you play the Stones and stuff like that, this would be a good choice as Keith Richard plays a Telecaster. So does Bruce Springsteen...
Reliability & Durability — 9
Hard to tell what the durability will be like after just a few hours playing it. It's seems as if it is built as solidly as the US made Telecaster, which is said to be a road warrior. Time will tell. Except for the Squier and Classic Vibe badges, you really can't tell that this is not an American made Tele that costs twice as much.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The action was perfect. I like it low, with the lightest strings possible and this guitar was great right out of the box. There's no buzz down near the 20th frets etc. It was pretty much in tune too, though I had to spend half a second tweaking it a bit. A Les Paul has great action but its a very heavy guitar and the neck is too thick. This guitar was perfect in my hands.
Features — 10
Really great guitar! I've owned a Gibson Les Paul and Stratocaster and this inexpensive, Chinese-made Classic Vibe guitar is one fine axe for the money. I played an American and Mexican made Tele at Guitar Center, and I couldn't tell the difference between them. After looking on this forum, I decided to gamble on the Classic Vibe unseen and I do not regret it one bit! If anything the action on this Chinese guitar is even better than the US made guitar, right out of the box! With the special effects on a Line 6 Spider amp, you can make this thing sound just like a Les Paul -- it doesn't quite twang like some Teles, it rings like a Gibson. Do Americans really work in factories anymore? I've been told that mostly they do not, so that made the choice a lot easier. If you're a weekend warrior like me and you want a good guitar that's not going to cost you an arm and a leg, this is your best choice -- the American made Telecaster was twice as expensive. There may be a slight difference, but I really don't want to pay $350 more for it.