Sound — 9
I use a Marshall MG15DFX with an EHX Small clone, EHX big muff and a Boss DS-1 Distortion running through it. As I say, it has a Duncan JB in the bridge pickup because I play mostly rock and with single coils it didn't do the trick. It really does sound fantastic with the JB and also the single coils in the middle and neck positions. You get good cleans, which is what Fender/Squier are famous for and also some really nice distortion/overdrive tones. Overall some real nice sounds from this guitar.
Overall Impression — 10
I've been playing guitar for just over 2 years now and for Nirvana which is what I play most of the time is a perfect match. It is so reliable-everything is so solid on it. It's a brilliant looking guitar and I'd never sell it. If it were stolen, I'd get another one or a Tele. Just brilliant sound and looks.
Reliability & Durability — 10
Fenders/Squiers are probably some of the most robust guitars you can buy. People have and play Fenders for years and nothing really goes wrong. If you've seen Kurt Cobain from Nirvana just throw a Fender Strat across the stage, most of the time it will still be in one piece and even from being thrown into a drum kit or into an amp is still perfectly playable. If I gigged I wouldn't have a problem with taking it at all. Fender and Squier models just have the reputation for being really reliable.
Action, Fit & Finish — 9
I had mine set up at the shop with the action lowered, truss rod adjusted etc. You can really tell it is well made which I've found with all Squiers I've played, even the cheaper beginner's ones. Everything is nicely done and the neck action is perfect- you can move around so easily on it. Just brilliantly put together. As for hardware. The tuners keep the guitar in tune but obviously with a tremolo as well the guitar can slip slightly out, but it's not really a big problem. All the controls and selectors haven't come off or buzz so that sort of stuff is good. The tremolo most of the time keeps the guitar in tune but every now again it goes slightly out, but with the good tuners on board it's not even too noticeable. Really well made guitar.
Features — 9
My Squier Strat is a 2004 crafted in China. It's a really nice sunburst with a tortoise shell pickguard and a 22 fret rosewood fingerboard. The Sunburst finish really is brilliant because you can see the wood underneath unlike some other sunburst guitars. It's got what I believe are Alnico or maybe even Squier branded pickups which sound good. I had a Seymour Duncan JB put in the bridge position to suit my style more.