Fender Standard (MIM) HSS Strat

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Generally good all-around quality on the objective points for a $400 axe. Stays in tune with no trouble and also plays reasonably well.  The pups and pots haven't given me any issues. They do the job. 


Cheaper grade parts here and there. Comes with no case or gig bag. I find that the notes tend to fret out a bit above the 15th fret.


I wanted a tough, beater guitar I could leave at the office and not lose sleep over if it disappeared. Something that could also be a back-up guitar for live work, if necessary. This fits the bill well enough. I have also thrown it in the overhead bin on airplanes in a light-duty gig bag, and played a couple of out-of-town gigs with it as my only guitar -- where it always holds its tuning and sounds good through a decent amp.

I would have preferred something with 22+ frets and with double Humbuckers, but I didn't have a lot of time to shop around, and didn't think the purchase warranted an exhaustive search. After trying 10-12 other guitars the same day, including a Jackson, some Schecters, and some other forgettable things -- all under $600, this MIM HSS Strat was clearly the best all-around guitar of the bunch. I got it with the maple board, because I don't have a guitar with a maple board, and I thought it would give me a different recording flavor, if necessary. My biggest gripe is with the Medium Jumbo frets -- I use Super Jumbos on my other guitars -- but that's a matter of preference. The action on this guitar is low enough, but it fights me more than all my other guitars do, but my other guitars are all expensive, superlative, instruments. The irony is that I play this guitar more than the better instruments, because I DO play it at work every day.


It's a Strat with an HB in the bridge. It's not a joke, or a piece of crap. This is a real guitar that is tough and dependible. Depending on your level and/or wallet, it's a perfectly reasonable entry-level guitar, backup, or beater.

Overall Rating: 
Average: 3 (1 vote)