Fender Standard Strat HSS with Locking Tremolo [2009-2014]
Fender Standard Strat HSS with Locking Tremolo [2009-2014]

Standard Strat HSS with Locking Tremolo [2009-2014], STC-Shaped Guitar from Fender in the Standard Stratocaster series.

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MGR/Nate S. 07/12/2004

Fender Standard Strat HSS with Locking Tremolo [2009-2014] : MGR/Nate S.'s user review

« Fender Standard Fat Strat »

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Bought from a Guitar Center in Richmond Virginia, for $399.

Above all, I like the quality you get from a fairly low-end price with this guitar. Fender makes their guitars rock solid, and just because the standards' are made in mexico doesn't mean this doesn't hold true. I love the bridge humbucker; if you want a great variety of sounds from a single guitar, from hard rock and punk to blues, from AC/DC and Nirvana to Eric Clapton and SRV, this guitar is perfect for you. This is what sold me on the fat strat rather than the regular strat.

Not too much to dislike...hmm. The wood on the neck is, in my opinion, the biggest down-grade in qualiy from the american fender strat. It is still VERY playable however. Also doesn't have the Fender engraving on the back of the metal bolt plate where the neck meets the body....but I'm just nitpicking now :)

Although all of the fender standards are made very well, there is a BIG variety with every one you will pick up, especially on the fretboards. I played over a dozen standard Fat Strats and I found that the fretboards would each fit into 4 or 5 different types. (I looked only at rosewood, my personal favorite). Although whereever I went the salesmen would claim there is no significant diference..there IS a difference.

So, my advice is do NOT order this guitar online, and if you can, try out at least half a dozen or more and see which feels best for you. I was lucky and found one with a darker rosewood fretboard, and I honestly can't tell much difference between my mexican fretboard and my friend's american strat rosewood fretboard.

The quality on the fender standards has dramatically changed for the better over the years, I have a friend with a much older one and it's nothing compared the standards fender is pumping out today. The fretboard wasn't that smooth, and the tuners were godawful (the tuners are now the exact same tuners found on the american)

Nowadays there are very few differences between the standard and the american, and it's up to you if spending $400 more for these improvements is worth it. The pickups can be replaced, and you can upgrade to locking tuners (only the Deluxe strats come with these) for much less.

On a sidenote, the guitar is extremely comfortable to play, the back is molded near the top to hug your chest, and it fits perfectly. It is a perfect weight, not too heavy so that your arms get tired, but not too light that you might lose control. It's right in the middle.

Fender has hit a homerrun with the standard strats these days. I am very very happy with mine, I've been playing for 5 years, and this guitar will be my top choice for years to come. If you're a beginner or an intermediate guitar player begging for great quality and sound at an affordable price, you really can't go wrong with the Fender Standard Fat Strat.

This review was originally published on http://www.musicgearreview.com