Purchased from: Guitar Center
Sound — 8
The guitar suits my playing style well. I play anything from the Animal's House of the Rising Sun to Muse's Plug in Baby, and the pickups provide clear sound for any distortion. I play it through a Line 6 Spider III amp, and a Boss Blues Driver. With the Blues driver it can cause feedback, but the noise gate in the amp eliminates the extra sound. It has a clear, bright sound, but it doesn't pick up tapping so well, mainly because the action on the guitar is a little high. Nothing too hard to fix anyway.
Overall Impression — 10
It fits my music well (Animals to Muse to Led Zeppelin) and sounds better than a lot of my friend's gear. I really don't think there was anything I needed when I got it, so it doesn't really need anything else. If it were stolen, I would probably buy it again. I compared it to a Epiphone Les Paul of some sort, and the sound is much better. I love the fact that it fits my hand and body perfectly and don't really hate anything about it.
Reliability & Durability — 10
I've used it for several months through constant playing, and it seems well enough to stand Live playing. The hardware is well-constructed, and very reliable. The strap buttons fit amazingly. I replaced the buttons, but one of the buttons would not stay, so I put the original one back in, and there's no problem at all. I would use this guitar with a backup in a gig, but I wouldn't expect to use it. The finish has not diminished at all.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The action was a little high for hammer ons, pull offs, and tapping, but not so high that it impeded playing. The pickups are set just fine, and all the pieces were set in place. No issues with bad hardware. It didn't contain any flaws at all, and the bridge works just fine.
Features — 9
The Squier Standard Stratocaster is the cheaper version of the Fender Stratocaster. It comes with 21 frets, a satin finish (Mine is metallic black) and a Standard Fender Tremolo unit. All three pickups are single-coil Fender Standard, and it has a five way Switch to choose between them. The body is made out of Absinthe and the neck is maple, with a rosewood fretboard. It has a C-shape neck for a natural fit for your hand and two silver strap buttons. It has the three Standard controls: two tone, one volume; a non-locking tuner. It came with two extra springs for the tremolo unit and the proper tools to adjust the truss rod.