Squier Stratocaster Buyers Guide


Squier Stratocaster

Built And Backed By Fender

Let's get something straight: Although Squier Stratocasters (and for that matter all Squier guitars and basses) are for the budget conscious, they are not just beginner instruments and they are not cheaply made. Every Squier Stratocaster is made to the strict specifications of the Fender Musical Instrument Corporation and under Fender supervision. Many well known recording artists use Squier guitars and basses, such as: Squier Stratocasters have the same basic features that have made the Stratocaster one of the most successful and enduring guitars of all time:
  • Traditional 3 pickup design
  • 5 position pickup selector
  • Comfort Contour Body
  • Most have the Synchronized Tremolo
  • And the other basic features that make a Stratocaster a Strat.
You won't get a fancy case and, with the exception of the higher end Squier Strats, you won't get the latest, most powerful pickups, but you will get a great guitar that puts the classic sound and feel of a Strat in your hands.

Choosing your Squier Stratocaster

There are quite a few Squier Stratocaster models, each with its own unique features. Your choices include:
*** "Fat Strat" refers to the HSS pickup configuration, which means that one of the single-coil pickups has been replaced by a humbucker. Many people describe the humbucker as having a "thicker" sound, so this type of Strat is called a "Fat Strat"

Squier Mini Stratocaster

If you are looking for a guitar for travel or for a smaller size guitar player, the Squier Mini Stratocaster is just the ticket. It has the traditional 3 single coil ceramic pickups and, at 20 frets, a shorter scale. The Squier Mini Stratocaster also lacks the tremolo bridge in favor of the fixed hard-tail design that many artists prefer.

Squier Bullet Stratocaster

The Squier Bullet Stratocaster is the perfect guitar for the beginner. It has the classic Strat features including the three pickup design, 5 way selector switch, and synchronous tremolo with cast saddles. The neck is maple with a rosewood fingerboard and covered tuners and the body is basswood. The Bullet Strat gives you ceramic pickups instead of the more powerful pickups used on the higher end models. This model is also available in an HSS or "Fat Strat" version.

Squier Affinity Strat

For a few dollars more, the Squier Affinity Strat upgrades you to an alder body with die cast tuners. It also gives you the option of a maple fingerboard. The Affinity Stratocaster is available in a left handed version and in an HSS model for those who prefer the sound of a Humbucking pickup at the bridge position.

Squier Standard Stratocaster

All the critical features are upgraded in the Squier Standard Stratocaster. At this level you get:

  • More powerful Alnico pickups
  • Standard die cast tuners with lifetime lubrication
  • Slimmer neck for easier playing and 22 frets
  • The better synchronous twin-pivot tremolo with satin anodized saddles
  • An agathis body
What all this means is that the Squier Standard Stratocaster will feel better, play better, and sound better than the Bullet and Affinity models. There is even a Special Edition version with a gorgeous Cherry Sunburst Finish and mint green pickguard. Although the Squier Standard Stratocaster will satisfy a more advanced player than the Bullet and Affinity models, we recommend it as an excellent choice for beginners as well. With its improved sound and features, the Squier Standard Stratocaster will be a more enjoyable instrument when learning to play and will remain so for years.

Squier Classic Vibe Stratocaster

If you yearn for the sound and feel of the vintage Strats of the 1950's and 60's, but the price tag of a vintage or vintage reissue model is not for you, then you should consider the Squire Classic Vibe Stratocaster 50's and the Squier Classic Vibe Stratocaster 60's models. These are not reproductions of the instruments of the era, but they have design and features that give you much of the sound and feel of the classic models. Both have classic alder bodies and one piece "C shape" maple necks, with a rosewood fingerboard for the Classic Vibe 60's Strat or a maple fingerboard for the Classic Vibe 50's Strat. Aside from the fingerboards, the most important difference between the two is that the 50's model has vintage style Alnico 3 pickups and the 60's model has Alnico 5 pickups, giving each the characteristic sound of its era. Other differences between the two are cosmetic and include color choices and pickguard design and colors.

Squier Vintage Modified Strat

An instant hit when they were released, the Squier Vintage Modified Strats are as if you took an older model Strat and gave it the "hot-rod" treatment. Medium-jumbo frets and a fast-playing rosewood neck, along with the three Duncan designed SC-101 pickups set this one apart from the pack. The Squire Vintange Modified Strat is also available in an HSS version.

Squier Stratocaster

Squier Strat Value Packs

When you want a single package including everything you need, The Squier Value Packs can't be beat. The Squier Packages include all of the essentials - a guitar, amp, headphones, strap, tuner, gig bag and instructional DVD - and they offer you three choices based on which kind of guitar and amp you would prefer:


Squier SE Special Strat Pack i

The Squier SE Special Strat Pack includes the SE Special Stratocaster, with three single coil pickups, agathis body, and synchronous tremolo and the Squier SP-10 amp.

Affinity Strat Special and Frontman 15 Pack

The Affinity Strat Special and Frontman 15 Pack upgrades you to the standard Affinity Strat electric guitar with the Fender Frontman 15 practice amp, a great sounding compact model perfect for dorm rooms.The Affinity Strat in this package has an agathis body instead of alder.

Affinity Strat HSS and GDEC Jr Pack

The Affinity Strat HSS and GDEC Jr Pack gives you the Affinity "Fat Strat" and the fantastic Fender G-DEC junior amplifier, which has 15 digital amp models allowing you to sound like you're playing through many different classic amps. The G-DEC also includes several accompaniments making it a fun amp to play along with. The Affinity Strat in this package is the Affinity Fat Strat HSS model (two single coil pickups and one Humbucking pickup at the bridge position) also with the agathis body of the Squier Standard Strat.

Other Things You'll Need:

The Squier Value Packages include everything you need to get started, but you might want to pick up a few extra things along the way.
  • Extra Guitar Strings - Whether you buy one of the Strat value pack or any other Squier guitar, you will need to buy extra strings Strings oxidize over time so, you should replace the strings on your guitar at least every 90 days to keep them sounding great and feeling good.
  • Hardshell Case - If you are planning to transport your guitar other than by carrying it yourself, you need to protect it with a hardshell case.
  • I nstructor - If you're a beginner without a guitar teacher, we also recommend that you sign up to the Sam Ash Music Institute. This is more than on-line instructions, we have guitar teachers standing by to help you whenever you have difficulty



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