Vintage Hot Rod '57 Stratocaster Review

manufacturer: Fender date: 11/09/2012 category: Electric Guitars
Fender: Vintage Hot Rod '57 Stratocaster
Classic looks, modern tone and feel! New Vintage Hot Rod '57 Stratocaster guitar fuses the best of the old and the new in one smokin' instrument. Great classic features include vintage styling and a thin-skin nitrocellulose lacquer finish; modern features include SCN pickups in the neck and middle positions, a DiMarzio Tone Zone bridge pickup, a satin-backed neck with a flatter radius and medium-jumbo frets. Looks, sounds and feel both vintage and brand-new at the same time!
 Sound: 9
 Overall Impression: 10
 Reliability & Durability: 10
 Action, Fit & Finish: 10
 Features: 9
 Overall rating:
 Reviewer rating:
 Users rating:
review (1) 7 comments vote for this gear:
overall: 9.6
Vintage Hot Rod '57 Stratocaster Reviewed by: Gibsonmac1981, on november 09, 2012
1 of 2 people found this review helpful

Price paid: $ 1599.99

Features: A Vintage hot rodded Strat. Nitro neck (satin back) and body. The neck is a 21 fet, 9.5 radius V, however it is much thinner than the usual V, and it has jumbo frets, it says it comes with medium jumbo, but they are bigger than that, almost Jackson fret size, the satin back is nice so your hand doesn't stick like usual with nitro finishes. The body is 57 spec, Vintage bridge and tuners, single ply pickguard, SNC neck and middle pickup, and a DiMarzio tone zone in the bridge. 5-way switch, non-shielded cavities. Came with Vintage case, strap, cable, and a 5-way switch upgrade, weird considering it already has 5-way switch. Mine is a black 2007. // 9

Sound: It sounds both vintage and modern at the same time. Plays metal equally well as blues/jazz (well maybe not speed thrash, think Iron Maiden). It is a little noisy because of the lack of shielding. Sounds like a Vintage Strat that's been supped up. Fairly well balanced, responsive tone and volume controlls. // 9

Action, Fit & Finish: Great set-up from the factory, everything perfect, amazing attention to detail, perfect fret-work, I've never seen this kind of quality from Fender in many many years outside of the custom shop. Seriously, it was perfect, way too good for the money, the fret and nut work was something you would get on a $3000 PRS. USA at it's best! // 10

Reliability & Durability: Haven't gigged it yet, although I can't wait to get it in smokey bars and beat the hell out of it. Have you ever seen a cooler looking guitar than a heavily worn Vintage Strat. Nitro is the key to that, kind of the reason I got it, but if you want a mint guitar for longer than a month or so probably not the best choice. Nitro will scratch from your fingernail, doesn't last long, but you do get superior tone, that's why Vintage guitars sound so good. That said, every thing else seems pretty Bullet proof. // 10

Overall Impression: Love this guitar, I did make some changes however. I swapped the brigde for a 80's PRS trem, only because I didn't like the feel of the Fender trem on my hand when palm muting, got a few cuts so I switched it. I also put a Seymour Duncan hot rails in place of the tone zone, for a more metal vibe. All in all this Strat surprised the shit out of me. Great feel, I was kinda worried about the Vintage spec thing at first, but when I played it, it felt like I've been playing that Strat for 20 years. Oh yea, you can shield the guitar for about $25 or less at most guitar shops, if that is an issue for you, but I kinda like it the way it is. I've had various American Standard and Deluxe strats, This one is superior in quality and tone hands down. Love the feel. // 10

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