My son's father bought one of these in the 1970's - I'm not sure for how much, but it was around $300 to$400 back then apparently from a friend, or used from a music store, but in excellent shape - mint condition. Almost a year after he passed away, my son wanted a guitar. I walked into a music store, and while I was looking for something for him to start on, I ran across the same guitar his father owned, that was on the wall. The salesman was trying to puch a Peavy guitar, and tried to use differnt amp settings to show me how great this Peavy guitar was. The Peavy was "twangy" on th same settings, and at the time I thought the Fender Lead II was one that just looked like his dad's. I decided to buy the used Fender, as the sound quality was far superior to the Peavy, and although it costs significantly more, I was impressed that much more with the sound quality, and bought it from a store that sold used and new music equipment of all sorts. Later on we discovered it WAS my son's father's old guitar. Apparently he was meant to have it. I found some distinctive marks (although most people wouldn't even have noticed them, I knew, as I was the lead singer for the group, and we had a child together. This was an awesome expereince, and we'll NEVER sell this guitar!) The sound was already great, and I think I paid about $1200 about 9 years ago for it (the music store was selling it on consignment, so I think I got a pretty good deal. Although there were other Fender Lead IIs out there for less[some even as low as $300-400, but were pretty thrashed], they were not in near the great condition this one was in. His dad always had taken incredibly good care of it, as he didn't have a lot of money, and it was his only source on income, other than odd jobs, at the time. Obviously whoever bought it from his mom also took extremely great care of it, or simply never played it?)
The Fender Lead II's sound is a rich, and has a lot of depth to it. Compared to other guitars on the same setting on a variety of amps, the others have a higher and some have a twangy sound - not condusive for someone serious about guitar sound. While price-wise it may not be a great beginner guitar, it is an easy guitar to play. The neck is curved (longways on top slightly), as is the nut, so one can play for hours & hours without getting marks on one's hands from a squared-off neck (on top) which causes fatigue, and is simply uncomfortable - especially after playing for a while. The sound is awesome, and there are few electric guitars, to this day, which can match the sound, without spending thousands.
This is truly an instrument for the serious guitar player, or at least one who has an ear for, and appreciates the incredible depth of sound.
If you play it by itself, you might not notice the difference, unless you play it for a while, or better yet, play it on the same amp as other guitars (and change amps as well and do the same), with the same settings for comparison, but different settings as well with both the Fender Lead II and whatever else you are looking at in the way of guitars.
This is an awesome guitar with sound rivaling the best in the business (and the most expensive!)
Shop around, and if you are lucky enough to find anyone selling a Fender Lead II in good condition, it is definitely worth investing the extra money (which may seem like a lot, but it's worth every penny!)
I suspect also that the value of these guitars, which BTW are no longer made, will only go up!
The ONLY thing I don't like about this guitar is that in order to replace a broken nut, which it took about 25 years of playing hard rock to do!!!, one has to find either a flexible nut (I think they are nylon originally?) that actually fits this guitar or have one made from bone, and professionally curved to the nut slot, as it is not flat (unless it has been altered, which I STRONGLY DO NOT RECCOMMEND!) Altering (or gouging out the wood in the neck where the nut goes) can affect the play of the guitar significantly, and damage the neck of the guitar altogether. If you see one for sale like this, I'd be leary of buying it. I have seen one, and flattening out the back of the nut just to get something in there to fit makes it sound a little different, and not quite as good... I'm not sure exactly why, but I would NEVER alter one of these guitars! Either find the right sized flexible nut (and buy several and keep them in your case) or have a PROFESSIONAL grind a bone nut for you. Check credentials, and be sure it is done right by someone who knows what they are doing!
I had 3 ground for my son's guitar, none of which were done corerctly, until I finally found a guy that knew what he was doing, and recommended the vinyl-plastic flexible nut anyhow, and had them in stock.
The bone nuts are much more durable (but then again the first plastic one lasted about 25 years!) however they DO change the sound a bit, which I find undesirable.
I don't know a whole lot about construction, other than to say that it is solid hardwood, has two pick-ups, a tone and volume control on the deck, and some have "Whamy bars", others do not. These can be removed without altering the guitar, and unless you use one, you might want to remove it, but keep it around in case some day you decide to change your mind, or if you decide to sell it. As with many guitars with "Whamy bars" or the equivelant, it can have you retuning your guitar a lot, however, if you get a heavier weight string, you'll not be disappointed, and will be tuning your guitar a lot less. I do NOT reccommend light weight strings with a "Whammy Bar", so before you decide to take one off, try some heavier strings!
This is an extremely well-made guitar of solid wood contruction with an incredible rich sound, and even for a beginner that is serious, to those who are out on gigs nightly, it is one of the best guitars I've ever listened to. Definitely recording quality (AND not only has been used by many artists, is better tha many of the other electric guitars I hear on the radio these days.)
If you can find one in good condition and can at all afford it, BUY IT! It will be a great investment, and wil serve one for a lifetime, as long as you take care of it!
This is a real Fender US, manufactures the late 70s and in the early years of 80. Basically, it is a model for study of poorer quality than the Strat, Tele and others. It looks like a strat (with some differences all the same), but possde closer characteristics of a Jaguar with two microphones, a slecteur three positions, and an inverter for polarity (and yes, made six possibilities), 21 boxes. Basically, mine was transparent red, but a beast accident lactone was conducted in a talented luthier o it will become "Vintage Blonde". On the latter after the original varnish was very poor quality of that said I've never had to complain before the ... mcaniques the easel, the mounting gn ral always sembl me very correct.
For use, it's Fender ... the handle is very pleasant, has slides alone. The access to acute is like a Strat, obviously, it is not made for the fans of Yngwie Malmsteem or Steve Will, but the grip is all it has to be more correct .dropoff window
It is very easy to get a sound is all ok. All positions are also effective.
This is what we pass worth guitar ... Well, much to say right now. It's beautiful. The sound possde a characteristic grain. No doubt, it's a Fender. And it sounds like one. I can safely say the same to me, it sounds even better than a Fender US (Strat type) produced in the 80s and 90s, and this is compared with the Japanese Reissue of the m me period. The sound is perhaps less dfini than a Strat, but it is beautiful and much less cold after me than many strat that I could play later (well, I aprle aps a Strat 54, right ??). All positions sound beautifully, so that I never know what my prefers (try the neck pickup with reverse phase ... months leading me goosebumps). This guitar is incredibly versatile, I played the very rock nerv she was doing very well. Today, she is perfect my style: americana, country-rock with a touch of indie rock. Branch on my Fender amp with Boss BD-2 is the perfect match !! I'm in love with my sound. It is also Idale for funky rhythmic pop, Talking Heads Franz Ferdinand.
I bought this guitar in 1999 to 3,500 francs, I say that his permit was remont coast from ... that said, not to me, because I never resell !! This guitar with me everywhere, and I could never do without. I did not change against a Strat or a Tele. If you find a reasonably priced, think it might be a very smart choice, much better than buying a Fender US (including inflation in recent years is chilling) or let alone a Japanese reissue (even if some are very good).
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archtop's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)
Made in America in 1980.
Start Maple Neck 21 frets thin varnish. 6 lifts marked F.
Lead body shape, ie strato style but the two horns leave box 21. Red transparent varnish has cracked the way around antique porcelain body.
2 simple inclined, a Volun, tone. a micro selector 3 positions. a selector on / off position for the phase two microphones.
Fixed bridge (no tremolo).
It was sold with its original Fender briefcase.
This is a guitar with which one feels immediately at ease. It has personality.
I find it a bit heavy, shoulder hurts after 3 hours of repeats.
Listed default, a prominent heel gene that access to acute, frets a bit high which hinder the slides, as well as the shaft slipping less than a veneer rosewood.
The profile of the handle is a little too round / thick but not my taste has an LP, I prefer the end profiles / flat.
She screams. I used split humbucker sound. The simple equip the have nothing to do.
They are powerful, bright, plain or in full. I think they have a lump in the upper medium.
Loadings are less fat than a HB group also can be heard better.
the two microphones together and out of phase give a piano arpeggios at the pick.
I hesitate to put 10, it should be better.
I've had two and a half years.
I was looking for a guitar without vibrato to tune in 10 seconds.
Since I wanted a guitar different from mine which is MSM and floyd, I took this one has only two singles.
Many trafficked EETE, :-( vibrato assembly, changed pickups in general, it is a shame considering the quality and personality of the original.
The varnish is badly aging, becoming whitish to transparent, black can turn blue and peel.
Cracks are limited to body contours and give a vintage look!
It's a real Fender US, not known to us. It is found to much when there are, mini € 500 more with the briefcase.
It can be found for much less, $ 300 to US, but his rating goes up.
A purchase as soon as possible!
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Dirt Noze's review (This content has been automatically translated from French)
Made in America in 1980 as archtop, serial number E014478
it has 21 frets, single with two microphones.
no vibrato on the horizon, traversing ropes (good for sustain)
one volume, one Tone slecteur slecteur 3 positions and a phase / out of phase (which only works qd the two microphones are turned on I think I understood too lol)
type of sleeve ... ben ... enjoyable not too big, not too flat like the ibanez (although I was not dplaise ibanez), I'm comfortable on it.
9, I fret over an AIM ^ ^ (not the guy sucks ...)
The handle is enjoyable trs, access to acute gn is easy but by the heel too pais.
trs is enjoyable to play standing as sitting, but it is almost as heavy as a les paul ... Imagine the DGAT APRS 4 hours BPS ... but I usually lol
and if not, we get a good sound easily, simply plug in the know ...
It attacks the good ... (But it will not rev objective is almost the only electric guitar on which I jou ...)
The sounds can not agree to a particular style, pasque I get everything out with ... with the UBER METAL I make him spit out the large metal if I want, it's not good either, but double it provides serious: D or else the blues cruncheux a good amp (which is not my case .. . mg100dfx) or trs good clear sound good in the bridge position and snapping round and hot desire on the neck position, but happiness!
when I put a little fuzz pedals in front of a (classic tube STRs) has lots of Nirvana grunge style yum
with wha wha and fuzz distortion I mentioned above we go to play the hendrix (well trying lol)
Premire is my guitar, one on which I always jou and on which I would always play (well j'espre). she has my mre silent but uses it any more so now
when I found in my attic, it had only two strings rusted and the handle dgueulasse full of dirt, and I had no ide on the guitar. Two years after I emerged with my first explained to me that I re-state (changeage strings / cleaning / dcrassage / drouillage).
I love this guitar
I would do this choice because it is not hard to find and TRS as any I will always fawn so I will not have to do it again