Squire Deluxe Stratocaster – Better Than You Thought
The Squire Deluxe Stratocaster is a shining example of the kind of quality and value that Squire brings to market today. To say that Squire has upped their game over the past decade is an understatement. In fact, they have been one of the leading forces in the dramatic rise in quality of electric guitars being manufactured offshore. Today, relatively inexpensive guitars, like Squire, possess the kind of quality found in instruments costing many times more. While companies like Fender, who enjoy tremendous brand recognition, can still sell their US manufactured products at premium prices, buyers lacking a fat wallet can purchase guitars like this Squire with only a small drop off in quality and features.
Squire Deluxe Stratocaster Video Review
This excellent video is a very comprehensive and unbiased review of the Squire Deluxe Stratocaster. It’s well worth watching if you have an interest in picking up a really good Strat on the cheap.
Hey, welcome back everybody! Thank you for joining me for another great video.
Today I’m going to be talking to you about another great guitar that I picked up recently that I’m quite impressed with. For those of you who’ve been following my videos, you know how much I like the Squire Classic Vibe Telecasters. Well, I came across this guitar recently which is a Stratocaster made from Squire again, but it’s the Deluxe version and I want to talk to you a little bit about this guitar because I’m so impressed by it. But I wanted to share this with you.
Save Money, Buy a Great Cheap Guitar
As you know, I like good guitars and I like cheap good guitars even more and this particular guitar is exactly that. It’s a cheap inexpensive, good quality guitar. Squire has been impressing me lately with the quality that they’ve been producing. The guitars are made in Indonesia, but I honestly feel that they’re up to par with a lot of the more expensive American or Mexican made guitars out there. This guitar, in particular, caught my eye on KGG. It was being sold at a local store, used, for 250 bucks. So I decided to do some research quickly on the Squire Deluxe because I didn’t know much about it. So I read up on it and I decided to go and check it out. And lo and behold, the guitar was in mint condition; not one blemish, scratch, ding, or anything like that and it’s got a beautiful pearl finish which gives it a little bit of a vintage vibe because it’s off-white. But at the same time, when you look at it closely, because it’s pearl it reflects the light a little differently and it gives it more of a modern vibe which I liked a lot. I actually had a guitar that was very similar to this one, especially in color, and I missed that one a lot. I sold it, so I was really looking forward to getting another pearl guitar like this.
Quality Hardware on the Squire Stratocaster
When I checked it, out I noticed that the guitar has a lot of appointments that are in common with the American made version. The bridge, in particular, has the block style saddles and it has a two pivot point bridge and some people like that. My other guitars are six screw-type guitars which give you a little bit less stability when you’re using the whammy bar. The two post type bridge is a little bit more stable and people prefer that. The block type bridge saddles, some people don’t like that. They like the bent metal types, the vintage types. Other people claim that these ones are better. To be honest with you, I think they’re both good. I think you’d be hard-pressed to actually hear the difference between the bent metal type and the block type. If you can hear the difference man, my hat is off to you because it’s very, I think, it’s almost impossible to hear the difference, honestly. So if you’re going to spend your money upgrading a guitar, you might want to spend it on the saddles if you’re having tuning issues. But for tone, you might feel a little bit of a difference there, but will you hear it, I think once the drummer kicks in, what’s the difference. That’s what I like to say.
The guitar, besides the bridge, is quite unique. It has Alnico 5 pickups and these pickups are single coils, but they’re Duncan designed Anilco 5 pickups, so they’re, I guess, a little bit higher quality than the budget pickups that you would normally find on lower end guitars. I haven’t had a guitar with Anilco fives before. My pickups in my Strats are more vintage style, sort of lower output type pickups because I like the quack of that type of a pickup. This one is a little bit more on the modern side, and what I mean by that is, that it’s got a little bit more punchy output. The lower mids are a little bit boosted, but not in a bad way. You can still get quack out of it, it’s just that you’ll hear that tonal difference when you’re playing at louder volumes. It’s definitely punchy. I think you’re going to definitely stand out in the mix a little bit more with this particular guitar, which is not a bad thing. I actually like that because my other guitars are different and they’re more vintage sounding. So it’s nice to have that tonal variation.
Modern Neck Profile
The neck of this guitar is also quite nice. I was actually looking for something that felt a little bit more modern and this one does actually feel a little bit more modern. Not in a bad way. The neck fits perfectly in my hand. It’s not extremely thin. I don’t really like thin necks, so the neck is has a nice balance in terms of thickness to it. The website says that the radius on this neck is 9.5 inches. To me, it feels a little bit flatter than that. I could be mistaken. Maybe it’s the medium jumbo frets that they put on there, which I actually prefer more than the thinner, vintage style frets. So, I guess that’s what gives a little bit more of a modern feel. It’s quite nice. It’s not finished in thick poly. It’s actually, it almost looks like it’s not finished. It’s very satin in terms of the front of the neck. The back of the neck is a little bit more glossy. I don’t know if you can make that out there, but it’s definitely a nice feel to it and it also feels like the frets, the edge of the fretboard, has been rolled. Really nice! There’s no sharp edges or anything like that. Quite nice for a guitar made overseas.
Serviceable Tuners and Pots
The tuners are standard tuners that you would probably find on any, you know, lower-cost guitar. I think they’re probably, they look like they’re may be made by Wilkinson or something. There’s no brand on them, but I kind of recognize the shape. They’re not bad. They’re good tuners. They’re maybe a little bit, for those of you who are a little bit more picky about your tuners, you might eventually want to upgrade them, maybe to locking tuners. But it’s really not necessary. It’s not like, you know, you play this guitar and you feel, “Oh man, I got to change the tuners right away”. Not at all. I think the tuners will do the job for most of you. If you’re not really picky like I am, maybe, eventually, I’ll upgrade them. But they don’t really need to be upgraded. The only thing that I think might eventually need to be upgraded, again, it’s not because it doesn’t work well, they do, it’s just that being used to having other guitars, the switch, for example, to me feels a little cheap. So I will probably change that, just add as matter-of-course. I’m in there, I’ll just pop that one out, for a couple of bucks put in a solid one, and while I’m there I usually check out the pots, and if they’re not CTS, I kind of like the CTS pots because of the taper. It’s a more gradual taper. It’s a nice feeling pot. So you’re in there anyways, for a couple of bucks change those and you’re good to go. Besides that, there’s really not much else you want to do with this guitar.
For those of you are brand snobs and really don’t like to be playing Squires because they’re made in Indonesia, and I know that some people are like, “Aw, it’s not a real guitar. I’d rather have the Fender logo on there”. I understand, but I honestly, if you put your fingers on this and you hide it, I’m telling you, to get the same kind of quality that you’re getting out of this guitar, you’re gonna have to spend probably a thousand bucks. Honestly, and is it worth it? I don’t know. I mean the body is basswood. Some people claim, okay, you know, I really want to guitar that’s made of ash or alder or something like that. The body is a little bit heavier than normal. It’s not heavy to the point where you’re gonna feel it like, you know, some guitars feel like bricks. No, it doesn’t feel like a brick. It is a little bit heavier than usual, then maybe an alder body, for example. But not in a bad way and a lot of guitars today are being made of basswood because it’s a good tone wood. I mean you can go with alder or ash, it’s more expensive, so obviously, you know, it’s going to cost you more in the long run. But a lot of guitars, like Ibanez, uses a lot of guitars that have bodies made of bass wood. Higher-end guitars as well. For example, Music Man makes a lot of their bodies out of bass wood with a maple top. Even Suhr Guitars do the same thing, right? They take a maple top and put it on a basswood body or a different type of top on a basswood body and they charge way more for it. So the body is the guitars resonance. It feels really nice. It resonates nicely. Like I said, I have other guitars. I have some guitars that are made in Mexico, some of them that are made in Japan, some that are made in the US, and honestly, even the workmanship on the neck pocket is flawless. I have no way of slipping even a piece of paper through the neck joint here, and I’ve had made in Mexico guitars that are that were pretty bad.
Quality for Anyone on a Budget
So honestly, I’d say this is an excellent buy. Again, you’re going to have to spend way more money on a guitar to get this kind of quality. It’s an excellent buy. For those of you who are just starting off, if this is your first guitar, or maybe even just you want to have a kick around guitar where you’re not necessarily worried about bringing it to a gig, or getting it dinged, or maybe you just want to have it as a project guitar You want to upgrade it, change pickups, use it as a modifying platform, this is a great guitar to start off with. I don’t think you’re going to be disappointed one bit. As I said, I’m very impressed with Squire. Lately, they’ve been coming out with some really good guitars and this is one of them. I think if you have an opportunity to try this one out in your local store, go ahead and give me some feedback. I’d love to hear what you think about the guitar. I think it’s great. I’m not being endorsed by Squire or Fender or anything like that at all. I wish I was, but I’m not.
So give me your feedback. Let me know what you feel about the guitar. I’d love to hear it, and at the same time, stay tuned and please subscribe to my channel because I have some other great videos coming your way. I promised you way back when I was modifying my Blues Jr. Well, I got that done. I got it into a cabinet with some speakers. I’m dying to make you hear what that sounds like. I have some other great guitars to review, and some pedals, and a whole bunch of other stuff. So, if you’re not already subscribed, please subscribe or you’re going to be missing a lot of great stuff.