Price paid: $ 378
Purchased from: Ebay
Sound — 9
I'm definitely a rock addicted, in every form. This guitar is not made for metal or extreme styles like that, but you can suit pratically everything between blues to hard rock, this is pure versatility. In clean sounds this is unbeatable, the pickups are the best on the market for that, really warm and rich on the neck position, lots of power on the bridge, with the possibility to split the coils for single coil sounds, which is not the ideal on heavy distortions 'cause of the awful noises but it's another sound possibility anyway. Using a Big Muff it's pure orgasm!! With full coils you have the best you can imagine for stoner rock or hard rock distortions, with an enjoyable warm touch on the neck position. Really great! I use a Peavey Classic 30 with a Big Muff, a Metal Muff and an Ibanez TS7 Tubescreamer. This guitar behaves really well even with metal muff, but it's lots of times warmer and fatter than a metal thought guitar, so it's only another sound possibility for rock, muted riffs just don't sound right.
Overall Impression — 8
This is a really good instrument for rock and hard rock. It's even versatile on cleans with the splitter, but this gives its best with full coils and some gain. If you play rock and you haven't lots of money to spend, just look for one of this. I also own an Epiphone Elitlist Les Paul Custom which I use for heavier stuff, but this tele is unbeatable as confort and playability. The only comparable product is the Fender Deluxe Tele HH, which is really similar but costs a lot, this is a particular, and overrated, instrument that deserve to be played, period. Just take one and play it, you will suddenly know what I'm talking about.
Reliability & Durability — 9
It's simply a rock, no question about it. I used it for three gigs around the town and it's perfect like the first day. The paint job is so heavy that you don't have to worry about the sweating or stuff like that, just clean the fingerboard with a napkin after playing and don't bother about anything else. The strapbuttons are great, this baby comes out of the factory with straplocks! Unbelievable, these strapbuttons are really safe and you can throw the guitar all over the place (well don't take this as an advice:P) and the strap will still fit perfectly.
Action, Fit & Finish — 5
The factory setup was really poor. Dusty and rusted strings, high action and carved neck. Just shit, but you can't expect more from a korean made setup. It seemed like a wonder when I took the baby out from the luthier lab, just an hour of work changed the world! The fingerboard is perfect, you just can't put the string out of it even hard bending. I use a fairly low action, and there isn't any buzz even on higher frets, great thing. The finish is really heavy, I think that it's a couple of millimeters of polyuretane. Well, you don't notice anything about it playing. The wiring is just ugly, lot of useless cable that raises the probability of getting electric problems in the future.
Features — 8
Fender defines this as a non-sense production, well I still don't know what that means but I hope that it's not a bad thing. We're talking about a korean made Fender Blackout Telecaster, two duncans and extreme all-black finish. Simplicity at it's maximum level. The duncans are Pearly Gates for the bridge and a reversed polarity '59 for the neck, the best on the market (in my opinion) for warm and clean sounds. No Telecaster ice cleans, forget that. The bridge is very solid (fixed) and the tuners works really well, no problems with that. This is probably the lightest Fender on the market, you can play it for hours without getting you shoulders tired, very good thing. Uh, I was forgetting this, it has a push/pull tone control, that splits the humbuckers in single coils, great thing for bright sounds. Strange neck for a Fender, flat D profile, very confortable but it's not my favourite shape, it's just unusual and you may have some problems to get used to this particular profile.