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July 13, 2010

Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster '50s

I recently purchased a Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster '50s, and ladies and gents, this is the real deal. I had a Squier '51 a few years ago, but unfortunately I sold it. I have missed it ever since - it was a very cool guitar. Fast forward. After recently trying the Classic Vibe Telecaster, I was hooked. I tried both the custom tele and the '50s Tele, and for that vintage tone I tend to seek, the '50s Tele won easily. However. the Custom sounds great too - it just has a more modern tone. Both these guitar are available for around $350 - $380 USD at most Fender dealers.

The Classic Vibe 50s Tele has a body made of pine. Who would have thought a pine body guitar could sound this good? I am quite surprised over how good the tone is in this guitar, since it is a budget guitar. It's remarkable. I do think it sounds even better than the '51 I had.

My 50s Tele had a slight buzz on a couple of frets. After tightening the truss rod slightly and changing the stock strings to 10s, it's all good. The setup was good straight out of the box otherwise.

The vintage-tinted and glossy maple neck has a maple fingerboard with 21 medium-jumbo frets and a modern 9.5” radius. The neck is very comfortable. The only thing I would have wished for are slightly taller frets. That would make it easier to do bends.

For pickups, you get custom alnico III single-coil pickups, and boy, do they ever sound good. There is NO REASON to change these pickups - that's how great the sound. They have that clear, bell like tone, and all 3 pickup positions are all great sounding.

I find it's mainly a blues guitar for me. I have small fingers, and playing that fast country picking stuff is a little hard on it. It's probably because the frets are quite small. My older Indonesian Squier Standard Tele has frets that are a little bit taller, and also a thinner neck, so it is easier to play fast on. However, the tone in the Classic Vibe '50s Tele is far above the tone from the Indonesian-made Standard Tele.

This guitar is a winner! I will say that I found the Classic Vibe Custom Tele to be easier to play, but it did not sound as cool to me. By that I mean it does have the same vintage vibe sound. It has a more modern sound but it is still a very good guitar - it all depends on what tones you like.

In summary, this guitar is one of the best deals in recent times, and that goes for the Custom Tele too. I can not believe these sell for under $400, considering how well they are made and how great they sound. The Classic Vibe Stratocasters are nice too, and the Classic Vibe line also has the Thinline, Duo-Sonic and electric basses as well. All very worth a try, I would say!

Where to buy

Check out the Classic Vibe 50s Tele here.

It is a fantastic guitar for the money - highly recommended.


It looks great with my tweed Fender Pro Junior!

By Robert Renman - www.dolphinstreet.com


Posted by Robert Renman on July 13, 2010

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