Sound — 9
I play mostly rock and hard rock. your probably thinking that I bought the wrong guitar, but this thing sounds awesome with high gain. I can play anything from Hendrix and Vaughan to Zeppelin and Ozzy. This guitar actually sounds better overdriven than my Les Paul. It also sounds great on clean settings. The only thing I don't like about the sound is it's a bit noisy, especially when I get near the amp. But a noise suppressor can fix that.
Overall Impression — 10
Like I said, I play mainly rock, hard rock, and metal. This guitar can do it all. It screams at high gain, and sound awesome clean. This guitar matches my style perfectly. I have been playing for almost 2 years, and I own lots of other guitars including a les paul. By far this thing sounds better than any of my other guitars. The only thing I don't like about it is I wish it had a nitro finish, but that's not a big deal. My favorite feature (and the selling point for me) is the '69 Strat pickups. They match my style perfectly. If it were stolen I would hunt down the loser that stole it, beat his face in and get my guitar back.
Reliability & Durability — 10
This guitar will definitely withstand Live playing (I have played it Live many times). It's never a good idea to gig without a backup, but if I was gonna choose a guitar to bring to a gig without a backup, it would be this one. I have never had any problems with it, and it seems like it could go through a nuclear war. All the hardware looks great, and seems very sturdy. The strap buttons are awesome, I don't have to worry about it coming loose and eating it on the floor. The finish is really thick, and seems like it should last (I kinda wish is would wear a little but whatever). Mine has lost it's Shine a little, but I play 4-6 hours a day and it's never been polished. I'm sure with a good coat of polish it would Shine like new.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
This guitar was set up very well from the factory. The only thing wrong was the 5th and 6th strings buzzed a little, but a pro setup will fix that. Other than that, the setup was spot on. The guitar had no flaws, and the finish looks amazing.
Features — 10
Mine was made in November of 2006. It's got 21 frets, 12" radius maple neck, rosewood fretboard, Vintage tuners, 69 Strat pickups (handwound by abigail ybarra), SSS configuration, alder body with 3 color sunburst, 2 point tremolo, aged plastic with mint green pickguard, "custom shop designed" neckplate, and a polyester finish. It came with a gig bag, some papers, a cloth, and some tools. What makes this guitar different is it is designed by the Fender Custom Shop, but it is made in Mexico. Overall, it is loaded with features that you would normally see on 1500 dollar guitar, not one that's 550 (the regular price is 799.99, I got mine on sale).