Purchased from: Reliable Pawn Shop
Sound — 8
I play any kind of rock: soft rock, hard rock, rock rock, rock n' roll, but none of that grunge, metal, or emo stuff. I must say, the 5-way Switch offers a nice selection of sound for what I play, as well as other genres such as blues or jazz. The neck pickup alone gives you a nice, warm, and clean sound, as does the neck-middle pickup combination, too. Heading further down, a more bright sound is produced. The bridge-middle combination is very fun to play on. It produces a "Surf Music" sound as I like to call it. The bridge pickup alone has a bright, open, almost crunchy sound to it. Seventy-five percent of the time I am using the bridge pickup w/ overdrive on. I use a Squier Champ 15 amplifier with the mid and high on 5 or 6, the bass on 1 or 2, and the reverb on 4. The gain is anywhere from zero, which gives it slight fuzz, all the way to 7 for some good ole' rock. I have to say, the guitar has only a little background noise when on the bridge pickup, but none at all on all the others. Very nice sound (if you already didn't get that).
Overall Impression — 8
Overall, I highly recommend this guitar to any beginner, or perhaps anyone Who wants a Strat by not an empty bank account. It is very adaptable to any style of play. I love this guitar! If it were to be replaced, I would get another one of these or a MIJ (made in Japan) Strat. Even with Standard hardware, this has just about everything I need: variety, quality, sound, stability and looks. I do however recommend upgrading to some newer saddles to improve tuning stability even more. This is truly a great deal and an even better guitar! Not only that, but it has a great resale. Hey, at the price I got mine, I may even make money. Three cheers for the Mexican Stratocaster!
Reliability & Durability — 10
This guitar is as solid as a rock, maybe even more solid. The finish has no blemishes. I usually polish my guitar about once a week. My guitar strap has never fallen off when I don's want is to. As far as gigs go, this is a very dependable guitar. It has always made up to my expectations. I like to play real hard on guitar, and all I can say it that it's held up so far! I really do think that this is a very reliable guitar.
Action, Fit & Finish — 8
As far as quality goes, this is a good guitar. In fact, that's really all that differs between this guitar and the USA Stratocaster. However, this is still a solid guitar. When I received this, it was obviously taken well care of by it's previous owner. All electric hardware was intact and working. I have not had to replace, repair, etc. anything on this except the strings, but, heck, they're strings. The neck is still nice and straight. The tension-adjustable tuners offer the firmness for the player's needs. I have never had any tuning problems; I usually tune my guitar frequently, not because the tuners are bad, only because I feel light tuning it every day.
Features — 8
I've had this guitar for about four months. The serial number claims that it is a 2001 model. It's also left-handed, and it came with a hard case. It has a beautiful "Midnight Blue" (I think that's what they call it) glossy finish. The neck is maple and has a nice rosewood fretboard and 21 medium-jumbo frets. At first look, this guitar is what Canadians call, "a beauty!" It came Standard with Fender Schaller non-locking tuners and a Vintage style bridge. It has three single-coil pickups and a 5-way selector, along with 1 volume and 2 tone controls, giving it a huge variety of sound.