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Rating and Reviews: Fender American Elite Strat

These American Elite Stratocasters combine premium performance and playability with the beauty of ebony fingerboards for the ultimate playing experience.

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"Great guitar but I had issues" submitted September 26, 2018

By Seneca Guns in Wilmington, NC
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Sound
Features
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Musical Background: Cover band guitarist 30+ years
Music Style: ROCK
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
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Sound: It sounds like a strat. The humbucker is hot but warm sounding. The 'passing lane' button is like a boost but it's kind of spikey sounding. I don't really care for the S1 switch settings. Sounds muddy to me. But some may like it. I did get some nice Gibson ES like neck position tones with a little EQ tweaking. The sustain on this thing is incredible. Feature: I hate Floyd Rose guitars but I wanted a trem. This stays in tune very well. I'm no EVH dive bomber but it will do the job. The hardware is top quality and everything about the guitar's quality but the finish is the shizzle. Fender needs better qulity control in the finish dept. Ease of Use: Plug it in and play. Took me a minute tp find the adjustment for the trem arm tension. It plays like butter. It sounds really good through my Blackstar. Quality: My cosmetic complaints are only visible upon really close inspection. With proper care this guitar last my lifetime and will be passed down to my son and so on and so on. Value: It's pricey for a strat but worth every penny for a USA made instrument Manufacturer Support: Haven't dealt with Fender but Zzounds resolved my issues with no question. I buy ALL my gear from zZounds unless they don't carry it. BEST MUSIC GEAR CO. EVER! The Wow Factor: The tortoise shell pickguard against the white pickups looks really cool. The stripes humbucker adds more appeal. I was disjointed in the finish as I was expecting more of a gold color. But it still looks good. Overall: This is a great sounding guitar. It is a very Strat sounding guitar. The twang and quack are there, as well as the glassy cleans. The Shawbucker ads the gravy to the meat. The 'Noiseless' pickups are very quiet, even at high gain. I'm using a Blackstar HT-60. It's a deadly combination. I can go from SRV growl to Metallica grind. It's truly an all around work horse, which is exactly what I wanted in a USA made guitar that didn't break the bank. My issues were cosmetic. I got the Champagne which looks almost like a goldtop finish in the pic but it's really more silver with some gold undertones when the light hits it right. Not that big of a deal. The finish was dimpled behind the bridge also. At almost $2k that's BS. I have 2 Korean made Shecters with beautiful finishes and no flaws that were half the price. But you can feel the difference in the craftsmanship and hear the difference in the sound. zZounds knocked a couple hundred off mine so I kept it and I'm happy. I might mention the striped ebony fretboard is a different look too.
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"Love it!" submitted March 26, 2018

By Dusty Wooddell in Parker, AZ
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Musical Background: 20+ years playing rock and blues.
Music Style: Rock, blues.
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Overall: It's hard not to love an American Strat, but this Elite feels sooo good to me! Sounds incredible... not much else to say. It's a great guitar.
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