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Insane A/B Test: Jeff Beck Esquire vs. Road Worn Tele

skhan007

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
9,623
...and no, I'm not high :bong

I just literally did this A/B test at my local GC a couple of hours ago. I played both back to back through an Engnater Rebel 20, switching between each guitar. I could not for the life of me honestly say that the $10K Jeff Beck Esquire was significantly better. Marginal at best. Both guitars were amazing players and sounded wonderful through the 6v6 mode of the Egnater. That 50's neck on the Road Worn tele (blonde, maple neck) was sooooo nice.

I am actually shocked at my revelation. :eek: The $10K custom shop guitar was about the same feel, tone, playability, as the $949 guitar (that's made in Mexico!!). I'm so amazed, I just had to let everybody know I did this A/B test. Granted, I know one is an Esquire and one is a Tele, but controlling for that, the Road Worn was no slouch. If I were blindfolded, I would not know that one was NOT a custom shop model.

Final assessment: Damn!! The Road Worn 50's Tele is a fine guitar!
 

re-animator

Senior Member
Messages
8,240
The jeff beck esquire is a replica guitar.


They're not trying to make the "best guitar they can make" for $10k. They're making the guitar most authentic to Jeff Beck's original.
 

Polynitro

Member
Messages
23,616
Even Jeff Beck didn't care for the original. He did give it away you know...He's all about heavy Teles with Humbuckers.
 

benjammin420

Member
Messages
1,564
the road worns are definatly a suprise guitar for the quality/value. but theyre brand new, i wouldnt be suprised to see the quality go downhill as they settle into production. get em while theyre hot
 

rhinocaster

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
23,369
...and no, I'm not high :bong

I just literally did this A/B test at my local GC a couple of hours ago. I played both back to back through an Engnater Rebel 20, switching between each guitar. I could not for the life of me honestly say that the $10K Jeff Beck Esquire was significantly better. Marginal at best. Both guitars were amazing players and sounded wonderful through the 6v6 mode of the Egnater. That 50's neck on the Road Worn tele (blonde, maple neck) was sooooo nice.

I am actually shocked at my revelation. :eek: The $10K custom shop guitar was about the same feel, tone, playability, as the $949 guitar (that's made in Mexico!!). I'm so amazed, I just had to let everybody know I did this A/B test. Granted, I know one is an Esquire and one is a Tele, but controlling for that, the Road Worn was no slouch. If I were blindfolded, I would not know that one was NOT a custom shop model.

Final assessment: Damn!! The Road Worn 50's Tele is a fine guitar!
Yes, the Roadworns are serious instruments. When set up, they play great, sound very good and satisfy those with a hankerin' for guitars with a vintage vibe.

On TDPRI.COM, Don Mare had very favorable things to say about the bridge pickup on his Roadworn.

Yes, these are real guitars that go WAY past a finish option or country of origin.
 
Messages
48
yes , i was very skeptical before buying mine. I was even on the bandwagon of hating it...

it costs too much
finish is ugly
made in mexcico

I ended up buying one b/c it was just that damn good. the neck is my favorite feature of the guitar. I got a really good deal on it but i would have payed the 949 they were asking I couldnt get the deal I got. I was also looking at a American Deluxe and a Highway One. The ones I tested were ok, these were also in my budget but I didnt like them as much the RW. When I was a bit younger I was a bit of of a snob on where my guitars were made. But now a fine playing guitar is a fine playing guitar. Light Weight, nice neck, nice pickups. It was in need of a setup but I get all my guits setup after I buy them anyways. Not the "setup" from major chain stores but by a pro that ive been using for awhile.

A lot of people try to compare this to a regular MIM which I think now lists for 459.00. This is not a true comparison. A more fair comparison is the Fender Classic Series 50's

http://guitars.musiciansfriend.com/product/Fender-Classic-50s-Telecaster-Electric-Guitar?sku=510138

I believe these are also MIM. Comparable features, 3 barrel style saddles, Ash body, Vintage 7.25 radius.

Some features I like that RW has that this doesnt have are

-Nitro Finish
-6105 Frets
-Tex Mex pickups
-U Shape Neck, (I still like the C shape but I prefer this U shape neck)

So to wrap it up its closest competitor in the MIM Line of 50's style tele;s is more cost effective. The difference is 10.00. But for 10.00 I think you get better upgrades.
 

Rossl

Member
Messages
298
Unless you are a collector with a large bank account............no guitar is worth $10K!! IMHO.................
 

teleman1

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
15,090
I appreciate the Op's test. But redo your test with a Princeton Reverb and come back & talk to us. With the Egnater, you might think a 60's Japanese Kay guitar sounds like a 59 Gibson Les Paul.
 

Polynitro

Member
Messages
23,616
Unless you are a collector with a large bank account............no guitar is worth $10K!! IMHO.................
Not sure how legit this is but John Frusciantie posted a review of his Jeff Beck Esquire, he said he wouldn't bust it out for any live shows.
 

bilbal

Member
Messages
8,485
Meaning it didn't do it do for him quality/tone -wise or because it was too valuable to him to risk it being compromised?
 

benjammin420

Member
Messages
1,564
i think all his guitars are vintage (ie, expensive) it must be a tone thing. esquires are funky, but he tends to have more 'smooth tones' which i cant imagine from an esquire
 

It's Time!

Senior Member
Messages
10,611
The only way you're really gonna tell if a guitar is great is when you record your album with it.
 

Polynitro

Member
Messages
23,616
Meaning it didn't do it do for him quality/tone -wise or because it was too valuable to him to risk it being compromised?
pretty nice

I bought this guitar a couble weeks ago just as a tribute to jeff beck. the price tag is a little high for the quality but I like it. I dont think i will play it at a show but maybe just to tribute.
Reviewed by John Frusciante on 11/16/2006 who plays Funk, rock, Alternative
 

wingwalker

Fuzzy Guitars
Messages
6,785
I keep telling guys, those Road worn Guitars are quite nice! The relic work looks sort of cheese to me but forget all that...as guitars they are great!
 

bilbal

Member
Messages
8,485
Cool thanks. I have been getting into Jeff Beck a lot lately. Going to see him next month actually. I don't really know what to expect besides a schooling in how it's done by the big boys. I'm stoked to see/hear Tal as well. I think she's great!!!
 

fullerplast

Senior Member
Messages
6,781
I keep telling guys, those Road worn Guitars are quite nice! The relic work looks sort of cheese to me but forget all that...as guitars they are great!
The couple of batches that I've looked at did not interest me. Pickguards were warped, sitting a half inch off the body (do they bake them in an oven?!), neck wear was way over the top, fretwork was fair/poor. They sounded OK as a platform to improve upon. Some of them were light, but the cookie cutter relic process (they all look the same!) almost seemed like a parody of the concept.

If they were a bit cheaper (and maybe even at this price), it might be worth getting one to set it up properly, but then you are getting into the price point of some pretty nice small builder offerings.

In some ways, it almost seems to me to mark the beginning of the decline of the relic market demand curve. I like relics, but too much saturation diminishes desirability IMHO.
 




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