Introducing The American Ultra Series | Fender

valvestate

Member
Messages
2,040
After hearing the comparison from Anderton's YouTube video between Elite and Ultra's pickups, I think Ultra is growing on me.

One thing that you will noticeably hear are the 'improvement' of the pickups from the Elite which is too 'modern', less treble, too boxy sound... Ultra's pickups are more vintage sound, Strat-like.

So the only verdict is the radius and feel of the neck! Can't wait to try it! :JAM
 

Strumlord

Member
Messages
1,321
I’m reading a lot of “hell no we won’t go” in this thread. So I actually went down and played a Strat and Tele, I didn’t spend much time with the Tele as I already have that spot filled.

I haven’t liked a modern Strat that I’ve played because I’ve had my head stuck in vintage style Strats.

This sure is a great playing and sounding instrument. The switch adds a nice usable blend of the Bridge pickup that I think I would use a lot.

Neck felt awkwardly thin but the more I played I enjoyed it. Overall build is better than I expected.

I don’t know or pay attention neck radius, specs, I like to just let the guitar speak to me,if it does then that’s all I care about.

i call it a winner from Fender, and it surprised me how much I like it.
 

AltecGreen

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,146
I couldn’t make it through the whole video.
The Japanese ad campaign might actually be worse. Three videos that is about twice the length of the US campaign. If they only left out the subtitles....
The irony is that they got Michiya Haruhata for the strat. His own signature guitar in Japan is more forward looking than the ultra for $700 less.

I'm not a Fender guy so I really don't have an issue with the guitars. They seem ok although the pricing is a bit high. This ad campaign is horrific. I showed the print ad to a friend over the weekend who is an ad executive in one of the largest ad agencies in the world and the first thing she said was that they were trying to be like Apple.



 

Strumlord

Member
Messages
1,321
The Japanese ad campaign might actually be worse. Three videos that is about twice the length of the US campaign. If they only left out the subtitles....
The irony is that they got Michiya Haruhata for the strat. His own signature guitar in Japan is more forward looking than the ultra for $700 less.

I'm not a Fender guy so I really don't have an issue with the guitars. They seem ok although the pricing is a bit high. This ad campaign is horrific. I showed the print ad to a friend over the weekend who is an ad executive in one of the largest ad agencies in the world and the first thing she said was that they were trying to be like Apple.



Ahh the switch in the HSS version splits the humbucker to single coils which is cool, too bad they didn’t just add another switch to do that which would have made it more versatile.
 

bluegrif

Member
Messages
4,682
I can completely understand those who would have hoped for more with this. But the reason Fender goes with incremental tweaks probably has a lot to do with maintaining the fundamental look and character of their instruments. Most buy a Fender because they want a Fender, not a Superstrat or a shredder. And, as John Suhr has pointed out, features like SS frets just aren’t practical for the kinds of production numbers we’re talking about with a company that size. And that’s just one complaint. It wouldn’t be hard to go down most of the list and counter each objection. Colors? It’s all about what will sell the most units, not what a handful of guys on a forum wants. I’ve read Fender sells more black Strats than any other color, and it’s one of my least favorite choices, so there ya go. (I don’t know if that’s still the case but it was for decades).

I think the most legitimate complaint would be that you can buy something like a MIK Schecter with similar features for a quarter of the price. But the bottom line for many will be that it wouldn’t be a MIA Fender. Chances are there are a lot of Fender fans who will be glad to see some of these features on their favorite brand.

Who knows how well these will sell. Maybe they’ll flop. But I’m betting they’ll be at least a modest success. And maybe the feedback Fender gets will help inform the next incarnation.
 
Messages
2,254
Messages
1,517
Just out of interest I wonder if I might ask what necks other folk are typically using on their partscasters? It’s getting to that time.
 

ivers

Member
Messages
3,867
This «modest and random cabin furniture» kinda visual vibe is my cup of tea. Doubt I'll be able to try it anywhere near where I live, but I'm on the look for a strat with a quite modern sound and playing feel to it, so I'll might end up taking a chance on ordering this if I should find the room in my economy. Will follow the reviews(demos and general reception, what type of player who will bond with them, etc to hopefully be a bit more informed as to whether this guitar can suit my needs.
 
Last edited:

Adelbatross

Member
Messages
286
I recently read an interview Reverb did with the CEO of Fender. Sounds like most production models will have a 4 year life span instead of 7+ years.

What I am curious to know is what people actually want in a new Strat or Tele that hasn’t been done before. Those in the “meh” category, what would you do to make the ultimate strat or tele (beyond price point)?

Ultimately, it seems Fender is more focused on getting more people to pick up the instrument and keep it going with their new Fender Play app. These new Ultra models seem to be targeted less at people who’ve been playing forever and more for people who are now stepping up in their abilities and wanting a better instrument.

Real long-standing players typically want vintage but they can only do so many vintage reissues.

The Ultras also seem geared towards people who’ve played a long time but off and on, have some $$ in the bank and now they’re given new (likely market researched) color variants and features that seemingly make it easier to get back into playing.
 

Groberts

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
3,670
I had a chance to play the new Fender Ultra Ash/Maple Telecaster this weekend. I wanted to love it.

Pluses:
They look GREAT !
Neck shape
Rolled FB Edges
Satin Neck finish was comfortable and felt great
Body sculpting was super classy and comfortable.
Fit and finish were flawless
This was the trans cherry burst (Not sure of the actual color name). Looks fabulous
Noiseless PU's are quiet
Definitely liked it more than the Player or Performer models. Altough I played a couple Performers that were quite decent.

Minuses:
Sound. Meh. I just didn't love the sound, ...at all. It was average, thin and kind of anemic compared to what I consider to be "great tele's." (Keep in mind my frame of reference are Custom Shop Tele's, Danocasters, Post Modern Fenders etc.)

The Ultra Lacked the texture, resonance and aliveness of a great Post modern or Custom shop Tele.

Then, for comparison and
contrast, I tried the Reverent Greg Koch Gristlemaster Tele with Fishman (humcancelling) Fluance PU's. The Reverend Tele killed the Ultra tonally (IMO). LOVED the Fishman PU's. They remind me of great aftermarket or Fender Custom Shop PU's.

 
Last edited:

John C

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,932
I recently read an interview Reverb did with the CEO of Fender. Sounds like most production models will have a 4 year life span instead of 7+ years.

What I am curious to know is what people actually want in a new Strat or Tele that hasn’t been done before. Those in the “meh” category, what would you do to make the ultimate strat or tele (beyond price point)?

Ultimately, it seems Fender is more focused on getting more people to pick up the instrument and keep it going with their new Fender Play app. These new Ultra models seem to be targeted less at people who’ve been playing forever and more for people who are now stepping up in their abilities and wanting a better instrument.

Real long-standing players typically want vintage but they can only do so many vintage reissues.

The Ultras also seem geared towards people who’ve played a long time but off and on, have some $$ in the bank and now they’re given new (likely market researched) color variants and features that seemingly make it easier to get back into playing.
Interesting - so that means we should be looking at a replacement for the American Professionals about this time next year (they came out in December 2016).
 




Trending Topics

Top