Price paid: $ 316
Purchased from: Guitar Works
Sound — 4
My music styles are hard rock and classic blues and metal (Led Zep, Iron Maiden, John Lee Hooker, Disturbed, Finger 11), I'm not much into punk, but I don't hate it. This guitar suits the needs of a beginner on any style essentially, but only with a half decent amp, and as soon as the player becomes half decent, the guitar is no longer useful. Fret buzz is unbearable, the strings need to be constantly replaced, the tuning is terrable, as I mentioned the tuners hate me and go out of tune in mid-song. It seems Squires are made out of Fender assembly line rejects, so if you are lucky you won't get one that has something horrible with it, but most of the time not. Don't try your luck. The guitars variety of sound wholey depends on the type of amp, without a good amp it can't do anything. The sound is far to messy, even with a good player, it is difficult to play compare to a real Stratocaster or Gibson.
Overall Impression — 6
I must give Squire SOME credit, it IS an okay guitar for beginners, it is cheap, but only people who are just starting, and for nobody else except those who play hard core punk and want a cheap guitar to smash at the end of the show. I would reccomend not buying a crappy guitar that will adequetly serve only for a half a year or so, and instead skipping that step and move to buying a good guitar immedeatly (like a REAL Fender, or Gibson, not Ibanez). Still, the Squire Strat is better than the Squire Bullet (which is THE absolute worst guitar I have ever had the displeasure of touching) or a Jay Tarson. Don't buy this guitar unless its purpose is to get smashed at the end of a show. Or unless you want to endure two or three years of hell before it breaks.
Reliability & Durability — 2
I cannot depend on this guitar at all, my band (ConFlicted) has a major gig soon and I am going to replace this guitar as soon as possible. Then set it on fire, and float it down the river. I could never use this at a gig, it comes out of tune too often, and my neck strap slips off because the strap buttons are improperly fitted. I intend for this guitar to last another few months before I gleefully destroy it. If however I do not destroy it personally I can't trust it to last more than one more year (I started a litlle over a year ago).
Action, Fit & Finish — 4
This guitar was horribly put togethar, the bridge has snapped, twice, and come off once. If my tuners go any length of time without going out of tune they pop out of the head. The pickups were incredibly high up, but loering them did not at all improve fret buzz. I have taken it to be repared twice, and have done numerous adjustments on my own, the improvements do not last. The flaws on this guitar are hard to list due to the amazing number of them. The guitar came scratched in numerous places, and as I said the pickups, bridge, and tuners were improperly installed. Also, sometimes the amp will stop picking up sound from the guitar, and it's not the amps fault, the guitar just stops sending vibrations.
Features — 4
I bought this guitar in 2002, I am not quite sure of the year it was built though, it was however built in Indonesia (probably by small children forced to work for low pay or something). Its blue with a white pick gaurd and a poorly lamintated top. The material is supposedly plywood but I suspect scraps. It has 21 frets and non locking tuners that hate me and anyone else that owns them. It can be bought in a package that includes gig bag and amp, but both are pieces of sh*t. So if you are stupid enough to purchase this guitar atleast buy a good amp.