Sound — 8
I play jazz, gospel and fusion, mainly instrumental music. I had heard some bad things about the MIM strats, I was really suprised at the tone, and I am a tone nut. Nice response from the PU's, wide range of tones, I've always said the Strat is the most versatile guitar ever made, For jazz I use the heck PU and roll the tone off, good jazz sound.
Overall Impression — 8
I'm 55 years old, and have been playing since I was 9 years old. My second electric guitar was a Strat, 1972. Over the years I've owned 6 Fender Strats and built 3. The nicest one was a home build about 10 years ago, which I sold for 350 bucks. I have a friend that owns 7 Strats, he agrees with me, the MIM's are a fine guitar. I lucked out when I got this for free.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Haven't had the guitar six months, but knowing Fenders construction methods, I should be able to play this for years. I'm hoping the finish will wear so it will become even more relic looking. I think the road worn and closet classic Strats really look and sound great.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The friend that gave the guitar to me didn't have anything special done, and it is probably the best playing Strat I've ever owned.I just slapped a new set of strings, tweaked the truss rod slightly and wow. Intonation was perfect, I aged the body, hardware and plastic parts, so it looks cool.
Features — 9
2002. 21 frets, maple fretboard, not my favorite wood, I prefer rosewood or ebony, but I got it free, Standard pickup config. I've owned several Strats in my 46 years of playing. This one has all the Standard stuff. Nice color, I believe it is called Midnight Wine or Burgundy Mist.