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Rating and Reviews: Fender Jim Root Tele

Who says Teles are for country music? Designed for the Slipknot/Stone Sour guitarist with active EMG pickups, this axe lets you dial in tight, modern tones.

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"Surprising quality and suprisingly MIM " submitted June 18, 2013

By Eric P in Anchorage, AK
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Musical Background: 30 years, guitar, bass, drums
Music Style: Roots rock
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Overall: I was nervous on this one bc I didn't know if I was going to like this guitar. Played one at the local Fender dealer but he wasn't including the case in the sale - I'm sure he grabbed it for himself when he saw it and I can understand why. Zzounds delivered it in excellent condition, and in the first few days I thought I was going to have to have it set up. After those few days I would not dream of letting someone else keep it overnight bc I would miss it too much. It just kind of warmed up after a few tune ups it seemed to need while it was stretching out. I don't have to tune it often now. I wanted this guitar after I saw it bc I had been dreaming of a 1985 Schecter Satellite tele with black hardware, dual humbuckers and a maple tele neck on a mostly black telecaster body. I picked the black and white - has a great satin black finish that is purpose made to wear down - I wish it would not. Really glad I bought this guitar for the 5th in my collection - I had no idea I would be so pleased with this guitar, the tones off the EMGs are musical, the sustain goes on forever, this could do pretty much anything, including the melting faces stuff. Peace!
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"Holy Smokes Batman ,this thing is awesome!!!!" submitted October 29, 2015

By CHRISTOPHER P in Haltom City, TX
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Musical Background: 25 PLUS Years, Garage band, home,
Music Style: I'm an 80's kid grew up on Yngwie,Lynch,Satch,ZAKK and all the shredders from the glory days. I still follow any kind of decent
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Sound: It's EMG's so you know what your getting. Sounds powerful compared to my Slash pups and the Bill Lawrence in the Nuno. I run it through a Peavy Windsor 100 watt head and a old 412 cab. In the loop I have an LPB1, a Zakk Chorus and a Crabon Copy delay. Bad Horsie 2 in the front. Its a good heavy massive tone for sure.. Feature: Love the neck, very playable. The fretboard was definitely ebony. After reading some forums I was expecting a tinted rosewood but it's definitely tight grained ebony. I was happy about that. The case is so nice !!! Funny the PUP selector is wired backwards but I kind of like it so I kept it. Its a one of a kind for sure. Ease of Use: The frets took a little getting used to as they are jumbo's. But after a few weeks I was in the pocket and rippin.. Quality: Very well made. Its the one thing I was worried about since it's a Mexy. However I was happy that all the excellent reviews were true. Its a very solid instrument only issue was the wiring of the EMG, no biggie I consider that little flub a meant to be kind of thing. The wood work is fantastic and looks killer. I like the minimalist concept. Root did good on the design. Value: It's a nice freaking guitar. I have an SRV I got from zZounds and to be honest the craftsmanship is pretty on par. I wouldnt normally pay a grand for a MIM axe but again the reviews were overwhelmingly positive. I DID NOT FIND ONE NEGATIVE !!! I even found where non metal guys were buying it and switching out the pups for different kind of music. Solely based on the playability. The only negative comment I ever found was for a tone knob. Dude it's EMG's why would you ever need a tone knob??? Manufacturer Support: No reason to call them. However I did call zZounds to tell them about the reverse pick up thing. As usual these guys are great and was ready to replace or return. But after playing it I wasn't letting it go anywhere... The Wow Factor: It was a hit at practice...The fact that I walked in the doors with a telecaster and then plugged in and got the sound I got. Should have seen the faces. The rhythm guy loved it . The sound was really punchy and out front compared to my EC. Overall: I was soooo hesitant to pull the trigger on this. I'm an EC 1000 kind of guy and was looking for something lighter and just friggin different from all the EC's in the field. I did so much research on reviews, youtubes, and forums and when it came to EMG equipped guitars, I kept running across this one. I would never in a million years have guessed I would own a Tele but I do now. I also own a Nuno, a Zakk Buzz Saw with Slash pups and an SRV strat. I love the Root Tele. Plays like a dream and surprisingly better than my SRV due to the thinner neck. No more CRAMPS!!!!!! If your thinking about it go for it. You wont regret it.
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"not just a metal machine" submitted December 16, 2015

By steve t in new york, NY
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Overall: I bought this for the ebony fingerboard and because I wanted a tele with chunkier pickups than the standard. As a life long classical guitarist, I have an attachment to ebony. It has been the classical luthiers' choice for the fingerboard for at least a century. To me, there is no substitute. (I found this guitar by googling ebony fingerboard electric guitar.)As a player of electric and acoustic guitars since the late 1960s, I have noticed a steady decline in the quality of fingerboards. Sadly, now we see iconic brands producing expensive, iconic instruments with fingerboards not much different from the ones that used to appear only on the cheapest no-name imports. OK, sermon over.I would have preferred if this axe came with some sort of regular humbuckers rather than active pickups. Nothing against EMGs, I have them on my Charvel and on a custom bass. I just don't like batteries. Now to the instrument itself. In the course of a forty-year career as a player, I have owned and/or played all the classics. After a couple of weeks of getting to know this tele, it's looking to be one of the finest electric instruments I have played.I switched out the plastic volume knob for a black steel tele nob. Other than that, I'm not making any changes.A lot of the PR and reviews and youtube videos are all about what a great metal shred machine this is. I'm here to tell you this guitar will play whatever you can play. If you have t in your hands, this thing will deliver it. Many thanks to the ZZounds people for excellent service.
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"Love it!!!!" submitted April 19, 2014

By Jon Townsend in Oxford, FL
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Overall: This is guitar I've been looking for since I started 25 years ago. I ordered the "blemished" option to save a little and I can't find a single blemish on the guitar. It plays well, sounds amazing and looks amazing. I will definitely use Zzounds in the future.
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"Great for metal heads...but no versatility" submitted January 22, 2014

By Matt M in Denver, CO
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Musical Background: 20 years on guitar with 10 performing semi-professionally
Music Style: Rock, pop, blues, punk
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Overall: I really wanted to love this guitar. It looks sharp and feels great. Plays great too for a Tele. I knew this had EMGs and the type of music Jim Root plays, but I was hoping I can get with that sound or maybe change the pickups if I liked the guitar. Here is the issue...they don't run a ground wire to the bridge or even have the hole routed. You don't need a ground wire for active pickup guitars but you do for passives. So...if you're thinking of testing this out to see if you like the guitar and would want to change the pickups, you're going to have to carve it up to run a ground wire to the bridge for passive pickups. Not worth it on a Mexican-made guitar. For that matter, it is also a bit pricey for a MIM guitar. I got mine as a scratch and dent but I feel like that should be closer to what the full price is. Overall, if you like traditional looking guitars and particularly Teles...and you're into heavier rock and metal music...this would be a fabulous guitar purchase. If you want a versatile Tele that rocks with dual humbuckers, you're better off looking at other options.
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"What a monster!" submitted December 12, 2014

By Nick G in Norton, OH
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Musical Background: Been playing guitar for 15 years
Music Style: Metal rock and some blues.
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Sound: The EMG'S are tight and ballsy - the mahogany and ebony are a perfect match. Every pitch harmonic I go for screams for days. This is the one and only telecaster that will melt faces. Feature: Simple one volume. 3 way toggle. What more do you need? Tone?? No way! Ease of Use: This is a metal guitar. So plug it into an evh 5150iii turn up the gain roll up the volume on the guitar and hold on for dear life! Quality: Seems to be built like a tank. Value: Yes however I'd say since it's made in Mexico it should be about 200 less. Don't get me wrong this has become my number 1 guitar. But ITS MADE IN MEXICO! 999 is fair price. 1200?? Now you're pushing it! Manufacturer Support: Have not dealt with Fender yet The Wow Factor: For me it's the playability of it. It feels so good in your hands. Fender made a monster. Overall: After an hour of playing the jim root telecaster I was ready to buy 2 more. The c shape neck is perfect. The action was dead on. The intonation is perfect. It even smells good. Looks killer with a flat white finish. I own gibson les Pauls and peavey wolfgangs. I've played every signature guitar out there along with thousands of factory stock guitars such as schecter, ibanez, Prs, Jackson, charvel, dean, Washburn, ESP, and everything else out there. The jim root telecaster has become my favorite out of all of them. I just wish the had more than 2 colors because I plan to buy at least 3 more.
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"Ohh the sweet sounds she makes" submitted July 21, 2013

By Tina M in Philadelphia, PA
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Musical Background: 27 years of playing guitar
Music Style: Metal(most types), Blues and Classic Rock
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Sound: Very good sound quality. For the styles I play it works perfectly. I sounds good though a Marshall Stack but sounds perfect through the Jim Root Orange Amp and Cabinet. Feature: The pickups selected sound amazing in this guitar. I never thought EMG's would rock this hard in a Telecaster Ease of Use: The controls on it are simple to use. Just setup your amp and pedals and go! Quality: It is made in Mexico but the quality is very high. Alot better than the guitars made in China. Value: This guitar is worth it's asking price. You will pay the same for some other guitars that have half the sound and quality. Manufacturer Support: Have not had to contact Fender. The Wow Factor: The look of the white one is awesome.. It has a old school look yet colors blended to new styles. Old meets new! Overall: I had a regular Tele as a kid learning and saw that one of my favorite guitarist's now use one. So I gave it a go, and I am thoroughly impressed. This guitar is so easy to play and sounds phenomenal with the EMG pickups in it. It has a true Stone Sour/Slipknot/Melodic sound to it. I have actually been able to Play Stevie Ray Vaughan on it too. The case that comes with it is beautiful, Grey Tweed outside and Red Crushed Velvet interior. Get it and play hard!
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"Perfect!!!!!!!" submitted November 25, 2014

By Justin Reynolds in Miami, FL
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Musical Background: Lead guitar electric. 12 years
Music Style: Death metal, classic rock, Southern Rock/Metal, blues.
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Manufacturer Support: This shipped to my door in three days after Only paying $117 of the payment plan. Never thought it would have come. My credit is terrible and they very generously allowed me to do business with them. Thanks zZounds!!!! Overall: I could not have made a better choice in a guitar, of course this review is specifically talking about my needs. But this is just what I wanted the sound, quality, simple controls the one volume knob is perfect. Guitar strap locks work great! This beast was made for metal. It's definitely made for plays who play in dropped tuning but that why I got it.
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"Mexican made- American played!" submitted April 23, 2014

By NORMA M in San Leandro, CA
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Musical Background: Piano and keyboard
Music Style: Christian and Gospel
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Overall: This guitar was ready to play right out of the box! Jim Root was smart to have his signature guitar made in Mexico in order that young guitarist can afford this awesome axe. Fast neck with an ebony fret board for superb harmonics. Mahogony body with premium hardware and a beautiful custom tele case that keeps this tele snug and tight!
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"MEXICAN MADE, AMERICAN PLAYED!" submitted April 8, 2014

By P DUNBAR in Oakland, CA
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Musical Background: Over 25 years experience
Music Style: R&B, BLUES, ETC.....
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Overall: Im thankful that Jim Root had his guitar made in Mexico because it would most likely be too expensive being American made. This guitar was playable out the box and only the E string had to be tuned. This guitar is so easy to play and fun to play as well. The ebony fretboard plays fast; soild mahagony body; excellent workmanship
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