STL50 review by SX

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 7
  • Features: 9
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 7.8 (31 votes)

Price paid: $ 109.99

Purchased from:

Sound — 8
I play a wide variety of music. It handles classic rock, blues, and jazz very well. The amps I play it through are a Crate XT120R, and a Peavey Rage 158. Effects are a Dunlop 535Q, Ibanez TS9 Tubescreamer, Boss PS-5 Super Shifter, EXH Nano Small Stone, and a Danelectro Fab Chorus. For single coil pickups, it isn't very noisy at all. The neck pickup gives a very bluesy/classic rock tone and sounds very nice on a clean setting. The bridge pickup left something to be desired and will probably be replaced. The tone knob, when rolled down to zero, makes the guitar way too bassy, so I almost always have it set on 10. The volume knob has a good response though.

Overall Impression — 8
Overall, this is a good classic rock/blues guitar. I've been playing for 3 years. I don't regret buying this guitar at all. Though it has a few flaws, it is definitely worth more than the $110 I paid for it. If it was stolen, I would definitely buy another one.

Reliability & Durability — 8
I play in the worship band at my church every Wednesday. It holds up fine when playing Live. The hardware will definitely last a while. It has good, reliable strap buttons. I don't play with a backup guitar, and I can definitely depend on this guitar for playing Live. The finish seems good and will last a while.

Action, Fit & Finish — 7
The guitar wasn't set up very well at the factory. The neck was fine, so no truss rod adjustments were needed. However, the cheap bridge saddles were set too high. There were also a few places on the fretboard where notes would not play. When bending on the 15th fret of the high e and b strings, the notes would die out. This problem was fixed with a few adjustments, but the action has to stay a bit high, though. It has quiet electronics and no finish flaws. Tuners aren't the best but can easily be replaced.

Features — 9
This Tele copy was made in China. The neck has 21 frets, a maple fretboard, and a laquer finish over the whole neck. It has a 3-piece body of made of solid Alder. I got mine in Vintage White. The bridge is a Standard tele string-thru body bridge with six adjustable saddles. It has passive electrinics with one volume knob, one tone knob, and a 3-way pickup switch. The 2 pickups are normal Telecaster single coils: small chrome-covered neck pickup and an open-coil bridge pickup. It comes with non-locking Sx brand tuners, which go out of tune often and will probably be replaced. It also came with tools for adjusting the truss rod and bridge saddles.

3 comments sorted by best / new / date

    For hardly $100, you get a new Telecaster type with alder body and fairly well fitted and adequate electronics? That's a deal ! Sometimes a guitar is 'good enough' and a new capacitor, maybe a GFS or offshore Kent Armstrong pickup set, and basic setup adjustments are simple and cheap. You can find matching Kluson style tuners barely used or new for $20-30 and you'll never wear out the gears (there is a tiny tipped syringe of clear grease my luthier showed me that fits the hole in a Kluson style case to lube the gears lightly). Buy and play this for what it is ... inexpensive, open-mic and party Telecaster, guitar mods and tweaking practice and resell it once set up and adjusted to another guy for $65-70 and you both come out ahead.... see ?