« A timeless beginner's choice »Published on 08/30/21 at 04:26
Bought used from a friend, don't know the manufacturing year but I would guess around 2009-2010. It's got a laminated body and 21-fret maple neck with Rosewood fingerboard, bolted into the body. We have your typical Strat setup with 3 single-coil pickups, a non-tremolo hardtail bridge and 5-way switch. No other fancy features, it's pretty much designed to get you playing as quickly as possible. The neck is a little fatter than I expected and has a rough satin finish. It's a little raw and unrefined.
Sound — 7
Suited my blues and classic rock style fine, the sound was a little thin and treble-y. But it's loud and could be played clean or dirty without issue. Played it through a Fender FM15. I didn't use any effects with it and just cranked up the gain a little when playing AC/DC, Hendrix, etc. It's not a noisy guitar. You can get a wide variety of sounds, although I wouldn't play Metal or anything too heavy. The pickups really are basic but considering the price on this guitar they're good value for money.
Action, Fit & Finish — 7
The guitar was not set up by the previous owner. I needed to adjust the truss rod several times to get it right, as well as changing the strings. Wiring and finish were all fine, there are no complaints. The Squier hardware is just ok and holds well. Overall the finish was fine for the price point, for a budget guitar I never expected much anyway. But it feels solid and put-together enough for you to start playing your first riffs. It's a no-nonsense finish and anyone looking for something different would be ill-advised.
Reliability & Durability — 7
I would use this as a second live guitar, or rehearsals and home practice. Reason being the sound quality could be better but it's unbeatable at this price point. Durability is fine. It's dependable and looks ok. I had fun using it and it never let me down. It lasted me around 1-2 years before I eventually sold it for a Les Paul which suited my playing style better. It's great feeling and sounding for the price, and will be a good introduction for someone starting out. It will do the job just fine.
Overall Impression — 7
The Squier Bullet Strat isn’t the best starter guitar, although it is one of the most popular. Despite basic construction and a finish that can be a little rough in places (i.e. the frets), you can easily upgrade the pickups, tuners and other features down the line. As with the similarly-priced Epiphone Les Paul Jr., it’s a solid guitar to start playing with and then modify. After all these years, the Bullet Strat’s classic sounds and features remain good value for money and a nice way to begin your guitar journey.