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Fender American Original '50s Telecaster Electric Guitar (with Case)

Fender American Original '50s Telecaster Electric Guitar (with Case)

Go back in time to the golden age of electric guitars with this stunning Tele. A pair of Pure Vintage '52 pickups ensures the familiar warm and spanky tone.

Overall User Ratings (based on 4 ratings)
Ease of Use:
Manufacturer Support:
The Wow Factor:
Submitted March 17, 2018 by Hans Friedel in Lone Tree, CO
"Fender American Original '50s Telecaster"
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I just received a brand new American Original 50s Telecaster. First, the good. Having owned and purchased several of the AVRI 52s from zZounds and others, I can definitely say there are some improvements with this new series. The 9.5" neck radius is great, and the vintage tall frets a definite improvement. I A-B'd this guitar against a 2017 52 reissue and the pickups were a bit hotter/louder and more articulate. Most of would agree that's a good thing. Another improvement (to me) is that the wood grain shows through on this guitar unlike the previous, late model 52's which had a sunburst undercoat. It looks much like the Fender Elite Ash Teles in this regard. Overall fit and finish are excellent.Second, the bad... the nut was incorrectly cut/installed from the factory so that the low E string is basically hanging off the edge of the fretboard. I had this issue one other time with Fender on an Eric Johnson Strat, but that was the high e string was popping out and over the edge. This is ridiculous on a $1799 guitar. Send it back down the assembly line, recut and reinstall a nut. Compounding the issue, zZounds no longer has serialization on these guitars. Previously you could select the lightest, prettiest serial number and purchase that specific instrument. I was worried that I would receive an 8 lb brick of a Tele. Fortunately, it was light at 7.3 lbs with beautiful patterning and even some flaming on the neck. Its also the last one and they are on back order.So I would love a partial refund to get a new nut cut for this guitar (about $100) as I don't want to roll the dice on another one or wait an indefinite period of time.Still, I played a new American 60s Telecaster, blue and double bound at a local retailer, and it was boss. I think the quality is inherent on these, it's just getting some of the details right. That guitar was flawless. I'd recommend this guitar with the caution that you might have to spend a little to get it set up and correct minor issues.
Musical Background:
20 years, several bands, mostly amateur home practice now
Musical Style:
Indie rock, alt-country.
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Submitted November 1, 2018 by Paul Grant in New Milford, CT
"A gorgeous Tele but not for everyone."
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
First, this guitar is absolutely gorgeous. The woodgrain on the ash is spectacular and the maple neck is magnificent. I guess you can tell, I love this guitar. Was it set up in the best way possible, no. I have spent some time getting everything sorted on the guitar but in this day of online buying, it's to be expected. Two quick words of warning, one significant, one more of a quirk. The neck is huge and can easily be a put off for some players. I'm a bass player, first and foremost so for me, the neck is just fine but for many, I would advise you to get this guitar in your hands before you make a commitment. It's not anything like that Squire you learned on when you were a kid. The other, less important but interesting thing is, after a couple of weeks in with the guitar, I chose to go a little heavier on strings. While I had the strings off the guitar and was cleaning it, I noticed a streak in the pick guard. I licked my thumb and wiped the streak. To my horror, the gloss of the pick guard was gone where I had swiped with my thumb! Left was a matte finish where I had touched the guard with my thumb. I spoke with zZounds and they could only offer to take the guitar back, not something I wanted, at all, to do. So, I called Fender and this is what a tech who seemed to know what he was talking about had to say. The pick guard on this guitar, unlike the AVRI 52's is made of a phenolic compound that not's quite like the bakelite, and as such, reacts badly with any moisture! He said if you soaked the pick guard in water it would just disintegrate. So, I'm offering this little warning to people with this guitar, the pick guard is ultimately going to turn into a matte finish. Don't freak out when or how it happens. It's just a crazy quirk that comes with owning one of these faithful reissues. I guess, if you wanted to keep the shine you could always pick up a five screw bakelite pick guard for about $35 from the Pure Vintage Fender line of parts. Now, it's time to go back and play for awhile.
Musical Background:
Playing bass and guitar since the early 1970's. Rick, Fender and G&L basses. LP's, SG's, Strat
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Submitted February 16, 2020 by Harlan Stephens in Bay city, TX
"A critical review after a month of so."
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
When I saw the American 50s with a 9.5 radius I knew it was time, zZounds did not disappoint sending me a 6.8 pound beautiful Telly, I would have been hard pressed to pick a better one out of a big batch....and I have played a few, I knew this one was a keeper.The build quality is typical fender now a-days, I could not find one flaw, one issue though is the nitro was just not dry, now I know what people who complain about a gummy neck are talking about, I have many nitro guitars, this was the first with that issue, it has stopped feeling that way over the last few weeks, I think it’s dry now.Tone, at first I was blown away, because that classic Telly spank, but something was just off. With further critical listening and tracking.A rawness, slight string balance issues, and balance between pickups regardless of set up, and struggling to get it to sit in a mix. the telly sounded good, but I knew it could sound great, installed some custom shop 51 Nocaster pickups.Everything changed, string balance, pickup balance , and how the guitar would sit in a mix, all much better. Still plenty of spank, but less of that raw, thing I did not care for with the 52, pickups, I must say however this is pretty ocd, playing to drums, recording, playing to other tracks....the cs51 pickups made this guitar perfect for me.This guitar joins two other mainstays In my recording lineup, a les Pual and my strat.I have not been able to put this guitar down after a pickup change, it does, country, chicken picking, Bakersfield type stuff, to zeppelin, in a very clear and articulate way.Very happy with this Telly!
Sound wise, it’s all 50s Telly, a bit raw. And was ok...The classic Telly sound is apparent , a pickup change, however put the sound and tone in much different class. I could track with this guitar all day now, and do.
A simple build of a Telly, with all the classic parts, make this what it is.However a few modern touches were added, and to me are significant, the radius change over the old 52 reissue , is why I pulled the trigger on this! a modern 9.5 radius, yes! and modern wiring, the 50s fender wiring I do not like , called the “dark circuit “.Used till about 1967.
Ease of Use
As stated above, and after critical listening, I kinda struggled here, With set up , with tone , and sitting in a mix. a pick up change vastly improved this guitar to excellent! It will be a studio staple for sure.
I have never had a bad fender, in the last 10 years, fender is just nailing it.Other brands I have sent back...Had an slight issue with finish. Seems to have dried out, on the plus side the finish is very thin, shows sinking into the wood grain like old nitro does...minor issue that just needed a little time.
If one takes into consideration what a telly cost in 1952, and adds inflation it’s about right, it’s a professional guitar, well below custom shop prices.Price I would say seems appropriate.
Manufacturer Support
Never have used fender support, so I don’t know.
The Wow Factor
This to me is a solid 5.What a telly should be. Simple, elegant , and traditional.And made in the USA!
Musical Background:
25+ years. Play, track, mix, some mastering.
Musical Style:
Country, blues, rock.
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Submitted July 30, 2019 by Charles R in ABERDEEN, MS
Verified Customer zZounds has verified that this reviewer made a purchase from us.
I was extremely impressed with this guitar! Its lighter than I thought and the one word to describe these pick ups are, "bite" I have an American standard tele and elite strat and still love them but this thing is tough. I am not a professional but do not have problem with the neck. No problem right out of the box. I will add some elixir strings.
Musical Background:
Playing 10 years
Musical Style:
Blues, county and classic rock
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