WTB: Fender American Stratocaster ($750)

jstarr823

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DarthPaul

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Sounds like you might need to take the kid into a guitar store or two and see what inspires him. It's really hard to buy a personal thing like an instrument for someone else.

How old is he? What kind of music does he like?

Don't forget that he'll also need an amp, strap, tuner, etc.
I was just out in CA visiting my brother (his father).
He didn't want to take him to a store when I was out there, but I promised the kid I'd take him next time.
He got a bit flustered when I started talking about getting my nephew a guitar because Christmas is around the corner.
My nephew started lessons a few months ago, but stopped because "his hands were hurting".
Now, of course, I hear this and I'm immediately skeptical because it sounds like a lame excuse to quit.
My view on the matter changed when I got out there and saw the abomination that he was playing.
I've played a ton of guitars in my time, and I know an unplayable POS wallhanger when I see/feel it. That poor kid was playing a medieval torture device, not a 20th or 21st century musical instrument.
Anyways, I can't fault my brother and his wife for trying.
I'm actually amazed that the kid tried at all - it kinda says something.
He's around a lot of good music, but he has his own tastes too.
I know that when I was his age "I got what I got and liked it". Heck- I used a hollow core door as an amp for two years when I first started playing bass at his age (around 12 y.o.). I've looked at the package deals but I know that I can do a lot better. The amp and accessories will be taken care of.
My OTHER brother (the PRS-hater) is totally down for getting this guitar (and sweetening the pot) because he actually plays. We're both excited for another potential guitarist in the family!
Even if my nephew gets bored, his older sister might pick it up.
Regardless, these kids are getting my Gibsons when the time comes.

*Edit:
The guitar/amp may need to be given to him after the Holidays.
I would prefer to have it in my hands first for obvious reasons.
The plan is to deliver it when I go back to visit my brother and (now) my mother.
It's easy to bring a guitar/small amp with me on the train.
 
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DarthPaul

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Most any Fender other than a Tele is going to have a tremolo, though it's not a problem at all to snug down the Strat trem so it doesn't float, but to hit the $500 mark, you're looking used, Squier, or hold out for an Adorama sale on a MiM model.
Epiphone can set him up with something really nice in that price range, and the shorter scale has two advantages in closer fret spacing for younger hands and reduced string tension compared to Fender.
Jackson, Schecter, and Ibanez also have some decent models in that range, but at that price point, they are all going to be Indonesian or Korean... though Jackson does tend to be "pointy"... even the Dinky (Strat) has a sharp headstock and cutaways.

What are his interests, type of music? Is something with single coils or humbuckers going to work for his interests? If humbuckers, is he going to want to go minimalist with one pickup, or might he want to fatten it up a bit?

Pretty much anything in that price range from the brands you named are going to be decent for a beginner. Just stay away from the "iffy" lines like Firefly. Even Harley Benton *can* be good, but they are hit and miss on quality and it would suck to get a bad one and have to deal with it. I'm assuming this is going to be under the tree next month.
I missed this reply somehow!
See my above response, and thanks for your input!
 

ErictheRed

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You might consider an acoustic guitar, too. My first guitars were acoustics, and I'm happy that I learned on them instead of on the electric.
 

LocoTex

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northernguitarguy

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I was just out in CA visiting my brother (his father).
He didn't want to take him to a store when I was out there, but I promised the kid I'd take him next time.
He got a bit flustered when I started talking about getting my nephew a guitar because Christmas is around the corner.
My nephew started lessons a few months ago, but stopped because "his hands were hurting".
Now, of course, I hear this and I'm immediately skeptical because it sounds like a lame excuse to quit.
My view on the matter changed when I got out there and saw the abomination that he was playing.
I've played a ton of guitars in my time, and I know an unplayable POS wallhanger when I see/feel it. That poor kid was playing a medieval torture device, not a 20th or 21st century musical instrument.
Anyways, I can't fault my brother and his wife for trying.
I'm actually amazed that the kid tried at all - it kinda says something.
He's around a lot of good music, but he has his own tastes too.
I know that when I was his age "I got what I got and liked it". Heck- I used a hollow core door as an amp for two years when I first started playing bass at his age (around 12 y.o.). I've looked at the package deals but I know that I can do a lot better. The amp and accessories will be taken care of.
My OTHER brother (the PRS-hater) is totally down for getting this guitar (and sweetening the pot) because he actually plays. We're both excited for another potential guitarist in the family!
Even if my nephew gets bored, his older sister might pick it up.
Regardless, these kids are getting my Gibsons when the time comes.

*Edit:
The guitar/amp may need to be given to him after the Holidays.
I would prefer to have it in my hands first for obvious reasons.
The plan is to deliver it when I go back to visit my brother and (now) my mother.
It's easy to bring a guitar/small amp with me on the train.
I'm sad your brother didn't realize what a shit player the boy has. I've seen this a number of times, running my Rock club at my middle school work. Kids turned right off of playing because they have something unplayable.

Good on you, uncle!!
 

fuzzdemon

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It depends what music he likes, you dont wanna get him a Les Paul if he loves Steve Vai. If it doesnt matter I would always say go for a Les Paul for comfort and user friendliness and even cheap Les Paul copies sound pretty good as oppose to a cheap Srat copy.

I love the Strat tone but the middle pup always gets in the way of my picking and im forever hitting the pickup selector switch by accident.
 

Roman4405

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Find him a nice used MiM Telecaster. Simple, cool looking and sounds great. No trem or weird bridge to mess with, stays in tune like a champ and can be used as a weapon in dire circumstances. No matter what kind of music you like, you can usually find someone playing a Tele.
 

fuzzdemon

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BTW I went to a friend recently and he showed me his new toy, a Crafter Conoy FM and I was blown away how low the action was and how great it sounded, you really cant go wrong with those things, cheap but kick arse. I cant believe im about to say this but the neck position sounded better than my Les Paul. He paid £80 second hand.

 

ehb

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CV Squier is the best bang for the buck to me....

Whammy is easy, take the back off a CV Strat and tighten down the claw to deck the bridge. Five springs and tightened...it ain't gonna move much....
 

Tone deaf

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Set neck tele from Stratosphere with two double humbuckers.



Double whammy, you get to 'build' it and then play it! If he doesn't like it, you get it back and can play the shanizzle out of it.
 
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ajory72

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Horses for courses I guess... in my hunt for that perfect guitar I'm now onto the Epi Dot 335 - very nice guitar right out the box (but worth playing a few to get the one "right" for you/or your loved one, hence the conundrum you are faced with - ie: buying someone else a guitar...I'm sure you'll nail it :) .).

If I could wind back time to that first guitar I ever got it I'd want an off white Telecaster with a rosewood board... unfortunately I never took that one on-board until last year after watching John 5 (from Rob Zombie band). Ironically its the best of both worlds, I can play metal - or switch to Hendrix tone... and squeeze a little quack out of the mid-selector...from some Greeny blues (right before I think nah... go the Es335 for that...)

Yeah, I'd go tele... like this one on Ebay right now = Squier Affinity Telecaster Electric Guitar- Butterscotch Blonde #R1959

At that price you couldn't go too wrong... good luck btw

PS: my tele is a beater - rock solid construction, battle scars all mine...I literally throw it in my car before gigs and it barely needs a tune the other end, they are built for serious touring imho :)
 

Tone deaf

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Horses for courses I guess... in my hunt for that perfect guitar I'm now onto the Epi Dot 335 - very nice guitar right out the box (but worth playing a few to get the one "right" for you/or your loved one, hence the conundrum you are faced with - ie: buying someone else a guitar...I'm sure you'll nail it :) .).

If I could wind back time to that first guitar I ever got it I'd want an off white Telecaster with a rosewood board... unfortunately I never took that one on-board until last year after watching John 5 (from Rob Zombie band). Ironically its the best of both worlds, I can play metal - or switch to Hendrix tone... and squeeze a little quack out of the mid-selector...from some Greeny blues (right before I think nah... go the Es335 for that...)

Yeah, I'd go tele... like this one on Ebay right now = Squier Affinity Telecaster Electric Guitar- Butterscotch Blonde #R1959

At that price you couldn't go too wrong... good luck btw

PS: my tele is a beater - rock solid construction, battle scars all mine...I literally throw it in my car before gigs and it barely needs a tune the other end, they are built for serious touring imho :)
I picked up an EPI 335 some years ago on a whim. It's a great guitar and lots of fun to play.
 

LocoTex

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The Telecaster is still available. I love LPB too! Tempted.
Like Jstarr said, this Tele is still available at $479. That is a killer price on a great guitar, and would be the perfect choice for a beginner. Great quality, and you can't make it go out of tune with a hammer! Hell, if someone would buy my Melody Maker I might buy one!
 




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