Fender Performer Strat or the Professional ii strat, $150 difference

IRG

Silver Supporting Member
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I have a good relationship with my local Fender guitar shop. I bought a Fender Performer Strat (traded in a Schecter NJ strat), fair deal, and after I left, owner mentioned I could trade up to a Professional ii Strat at $1550 (normally $1699) Miami Blue with a maple neck. Difference is only $150. I actually prefer the looks of my honey burst Performer body over the Miami Blue color. But the Pro II has a 2 point tremolo over the 6 screw , and I’ve found mine doesn’t stay in tune that well (usually not a problem for me with the 2 screw version). Hard shell case another upgrade. The neck on the Professional II is usually the big advantage but I’m not sure yet I like the gloss finish on the fingerboard - anyone not like it? I’m thinking I should upgrade, just asking for confirmation I guess.
 

Strummerfan

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10,221
I do prefer the specs on the Pro II, the contoured heel is a plus, as is the two point trem, and I've heard good things about the v-mod pickups, but no personal experience. I do like the hoeyburst, but Miami Blue is a nice finish. I guess you have to weigh how much you prefer the honey to the specs on the Pro. The performer's are good guitars, and a six screw trem will hold tune if set up properly with a well cut nut and a little graphite to lube the slots. $150 extra for all those upgrades is a good deal though. The hard case alone is a great upgrade if you are gigging. Real tough choice you have there.
I'd buy both! (Jk).
 

Ozone Baby

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1,795
The only thing I'm seeing that you prefer on the Pro II is the 2 point trem.
As stated, if you get a pro setup, the 6 screw should work fine, but i guess it depends on how much you use the trem, and how vigorously you use it.

Personally, I'd stick with the one you have since you like the finish better, and prefer the neck. Pay a pro to set it up, and buy a SKB case.

Good luck
 

mcv

Senior Member
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413
I would go for the Am pro II; i see more value in it than the $150
 

IRG

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5,290
Well the neck on the Pro II is a smidge fuller than the Performer, but I can adapt. I like the looks of the tinted maple a lot. Do I like the gloss finish of the neck? Dunno, time will tell. Rolled edges on the Pro are very nice. I would assume the Vmod pickups are an upgrade over the Yosemite, which are good. I think the Pro II is one I won’t feel the need to upgrade in the future.
 
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I Have both. I really like the Performer Strat. The Neck is sublime. Really the perfect Strat neck shape, and really Big Frets. Love that Large Headstock! The Vintage 6 screw Trem ad's a nice vintage vibe, and I prefer a traditional screw in Trem Arm. - I swapped out my own pickups, and the American Performer Strat is perfect for someone like me who wants to Tinker.

I have an almost new American Professional II Strat in Sunburst. I really hate the Snap in Tremolo arm. But I DO like most other things about this Strat, including the Blender Switch that brings in the Bridge Pickup. I like the V Mod pickups, they are very Percussive, and Stratty. The bridge features a Steel Block, which is a nice upgrade. View attachment 783258
 
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IRG

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5,290
The AP2 has a 2 point tremolo though, the pic above looks like the Performer 6 screw bridge. For the little amount of time I’ve had with the 6 screw, it has some tuning instability to it. Not bad, but it’s not due to the nut or anything else. I’ve had a few other strats, all with 2 screw bridges and I’ve always been surprised with how well they’ve kept tune.
 

monty

Member
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27,093
IMO if it is just the 2 point trem that you want for the tuning stability, I would invest that $150 in a good tech for a set-up since it sounds like you are bonding with the Performer.
That said, the other option is a win also.
 

LCW

Member
Messages
1,347
Am Pro II.
Neck is really comfortable. Satin finish is perfect. The V-mod II pickups are great imo. Lots of midrange. I deck my trem so no comment there.

C16A1EEB-9AED-4E35-816F-EABBBCBA02AB.jpeg
 

IRG

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,290
Am Pro II.
Neck is really comfortable. Satin finish is perfect. The V-mod II pickups are great imo. Lots of midrange. I deck my trem so no comment there.

View attachment 783392

That's a beauty, and my shop has this model here too. The Miami Blue model has been sitting longer for them, hence the discount. I think I'm going to do it, no downside here, money difference ain't much really. And I do prefer the smaller headstock as well, but that's not a playability issue. The neck on the Performer reminds me of my PRS CE24, which is on the thinner side, the ProII is a bit fuller, which I like as well, just a bit of an adjustment. But I'm not one of those guitarists that can't adjust to different neck sizes (within reason). I like the diversity of having different options in the stable, but some folks know exactly what they want, and are very particular in that way, nothing wrong with that either.
 

Matteo11

Member
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2,563
As mentioned the tuning issue with the term can be fixed. While the $150 upgrade to the AM Pro II is well worth it on paper I would only do it if you feel the AM Pro II plays better than the Performer.

I personally ALWAYS defer to playability.

Playability and comfort are much more difficult to fix than upgrading hardware and pu’s.

I guaranty if you owned both guitars and preferred the looks and playability (once trem issue resolved) of the Perfomer…….you would reach for the Performer 9 times out of 10.
 

IRG

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,290
As mentioned the tuning issue with the term can be fixed. While the $150 upgrade to the AM Pro II is well worth it on paper I would only do it if you feel the AM Pro II plays better than the Performer.

I personally ALWAYS defer to playability.

Playability and comfort are much more difficult to fix than upgrading hardware and pu’s.

I guaranty if you owned both guitars and preferred the looks and playability (once trem issue resolved) of the Perfomer…….you would reach for the Performer 9 times out of 10.
Agree on playability, but at this level, these guitars are all quite playable. But one issue I came across on the Performer. The tremolo is a screw in, and sits fairly low. When you pull out the lower tone control, it actually hits the knob when pulled out. Plus you have to grab the knob up to engage this feature of adding the neck pickup, which is great btw. But the ProII has a pop in tremolo arm, sits higher, and the tone knob,neck pickup feature is easier to access by simply pushing on it to engage, not having to lift up. So in this case, a feature I use has better playability with the ProII. Did The trade in today, and am really glad I did. Lovely guitar to play, and sweet sounds too. And the hsc it comes with is really nice. I’m slowly trying to add a small collection of USA made guitars, and this one fits right in. Pics coming soon.
 

IRG

Silver Supporting Member
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5,290
The second pic shows about an inch of space, between the lower tone control and the tremolo bar. But on the Performer, I found the bar actually knocked into the knob when pulled out. Really not a great design, not sure why that was. I had the tremolo bar screwed in fairly tight, as I like it (so it's not flopping around) but the Pro II is a push in, which I prefer, and the clearance is quite good, as you can see here.
 

stratcat54

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
240
American Pro II is worth the extra $150 and then some. Better wiring, better tremolo, better neck. I have a Miami blue and you can’t go wrong in comparison to the performer.
 




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