Standard Stratocaster HSS review by Fender

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  • Sound: 7
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.6 Good
  • Users' score: 8.6 (301 votes)
Fender: Standard Stratocaster HSS

Price paid: $ 350

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 7
I play mostly clean and classic rock. Right now I am trying to learn Black Dog which is classic rock and I can get this well. The humbucker adds quite a bit of versatility in this guitar. It's a little higher output so when you Switch to it, the volume gets louder but it's not by that much. The only problem with this was that when I got it, the humbucker was super trebly, and chord sounded very harsh and mean and it made me hate the guitar for a while as I bought it intending to use the humbucker quite a bit. I later turned the screwa next to it a few times and the problem was fixed completely. Now I love my guitar. With my solid state amp on full blast with distortion it get only a little hum from the humbucker and a noticable amount with the single coils. it's wierd though that when I use the middle and bridge pickups I get the least amount of hum. Anyways, great guitar, the neck pickup is very smooth and the tone and volume knobs give even more possibilities. By the way, The pick up selector makes almost no noise. don't get this guitar expecting the humbucker to be great though because as this body is light and alder, it lacks the punch and low end normally associated on les pauls and humbuckers on those. don't think you will get that with this. Also, I had a ton of fret buzz on the low E string but I changed strings and it went away. 7 before the alterations, 8 after.

Overall Impression — 7
This guitar is a great match to any sort of music. I would only say it's not good for metal but overall I have no like for metal and I find that it's only teens who really like it. Trust me you'll grow out of it. I've been playing for a while. Ignore the onfo in my profile as that is my brother. he's the fifteen year old. I'm writing a review of his guitar as he's too lazy to do so. I own a few tube amps and I've realized, it's better to have one thing that does one thing great than have one that does everything ok. that's how I feel about this guitar. I lean more towards humbucking guitars as I like a more warm and full sound that I feel most strats do not provide due to the weight and shape of the guitar. I would not buy this guitar again because there are so many better and I would just save to get a better one. it's no fun getting the same guitar again and not expecting anything new. My favorite feature is probably the humbucker now that I adjusted it. I hated it before. Thanks for reading this and I hoped it helps. I give it a seven not because it's bad but because there's much better. For the price range I say it's in the top three along with Agile and possibly Hamer.

Reliability & Durability — 8
This guitar will last. plain and simple. The pickups may not be the best and wou may get them changed but it is dependable. I once caught my strap about to come of my my strap is the worst I have ever seen. I usually play sitting down but I would recommend getting straplocks if you move around on stage a lot. I would never use a guitar on a gig without a backup as it never works out well not to do so. You need to have some sort of thing to fall back on when you break a string or something. Like I said about it has a great finish.

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
This guitar was set up great for me. I don't really know what perfect action is as I haven't delt with any guitars with bad action so I couldnt say. The pickups as I said before sounded harsh but it's probably the easiest adjustment you can do on a guitar and it changes the sound a lot. The intonation is almost perfect as I checked it with a tuner and the bridge is just right for my needs. If you are using the vibrato arm a lot, I suggest looking at a guitar with a locking bridge as too much use will make this guitar go out of tune. Everything is good on this guitar. The middle pickup tone knob is a little stiff compared to the others but I barely use the tone knob or middle pickup any ways. I have bumped and dinged this guitar on various walls and door ways but I have yet to find a single scratch on it. Very durable finish. I give it an 8 because it's not the prettiest guitar and there's always better.

Features — 8
Not sure when mine was made but it was made in Mexico by the finest of mexicans. It has 21 medium jumbo frets that seem prett good all through out the neck. One of them isn't filed very well but it's on the low e side and it's at the 19th fret so you don't really realize it. it's alder body is nice, keeping it fairly lightweight but still with a fair amount of punch. The Strat body has nice curves to fit your body where the guitar would meet your stomach and where your right arm curves over to strum the strings. I have the "Elctron Blue" Finish which I like but I realize I should have gone with white. I got the maple fretboard mainly because of looks but it's also smoother than the rosewood. It has a floating trem and mine stays in tune very well. I don't really use the trem very much but even if I don't tune it for a week, it's only a few ticks off on my tuner. Being an HSS Strat, it has passive single coils in the neck and middle with a humbucker in the bridge. it's not that great but I'll get to that. It has a master volume and two tone knobs for the two single coils. I wish it had one for the humbucker as I like to use that more. It also has a five way pickup selector to chose between the 3 and mix the middle and neck or the middle and bridge. The tuners are fine, nothing special and it came with a very simple gigbag and tools to adjust the truss rod. It would be nice if the gigbag was better and the humbucker had a coil tap but you can't always get what you want.

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