Tele advice....

Goldie14

Member
Messages
32
Thinking of buying a tele but havent had much experience being a strat player. I mostly play blues and rock but was after a guitar with a bit more bite. I dont want to spend too much either of possible.

Which of the following do people prefer and why.....
- Squire classic vibe
- MIM
- MIA
- Roadworn 50s (MIM)
- MIJ
 

Drewboy

Member
Messages
674
I'm a strat guy myself. I bought the 60's Classic Players Baja Tele in sonic blue. Neck is a little smaller and works for me and my small hands. Been really happy with it and love the different tones.
 

David Garner

Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
7,613
Bajas are outstanding, but of the ones you picked, I'd go with the Roadworn 50s.

Don't overlook the American Specials. You can get them used for $500-600, and they're fantastic.
 

suparsonic

Member
Messages
3,833
If you're a Strat player you will feel more at home with a body cut. American Deluxe has one I think the American Standard may have one also.
 

Ugly Bunny

Member
Messages
2,453
Depending on your budget, you may look into the EBMM James Valentine. Not a tele per se, but very tele-like specs & appointments. Look into it :)
 

old goat

Member
Messages
1,987
I play a 52 VHR with Don Mare SC pickups, not on your list obviously. Like the sound, like the feel, like the looks. But I can't say it has any more bite than my Strat. It has tele twang of course, has a B+N sound that's unique to teles, doesn't have strat quack. So I'm not sure you're going to find what you're looking for, but since you seem to have a certain sound in mind I think you need to ignore others' opinions and play different models until you find what you're looking for or give up trying.
 
M

Member 1963

My fav are MIM classic series. A lot of people like the baja's too, which are the same but with USA pickups and flatter radius an bigger frets and custom switching. I still prefer the simplicity of vintage switching and vintage frets so i like the classic series. I change out the pickups but then i usually do anyways even on fenders with USA pickups because i gotta tweak any guitar to sound exactly how i want. So baja or classic series is my recommendation. The classic 60s is a guitar that IMO is a guitar thats just about perfect. It's what i would own if i could only have one guitar. Classic series and baja are the best bang/buck there is by far as teles go IMO. I prefer poly finishes but if you gotta have nitro then USA vintage series.
 

jklotz

Member
Messages
3,918
I love teles!

Lots of good choices out there. Like others have mentioned, find the one that fits your hands the best.

It's hard to go wrong with a 50's baja, unless you just don't get along with the neck size and shape.
 

Funny123

Member
Messages
378
Thinking of buying a tele but havent had much experience being a strat player. I mostly play blues and rock but was after a guitar with a bit more bite. I dont want to spend too much either of possible.

Which of the following do people prefer and why.....
- Squire classic vibe
- MIM
- MIA
- Roadworn 50s (MIM)
- MIJ

If I was buying the guitar on the net - MIA; I just trust the craftsmanship
If I could play/inspect the guitar before purchasing - All of the Above
 

kludge

The droid you're looking for
Messages
7,108
Figure out what you're willing to spend, then start playing Teles in your price range. It's a really broad range, and even within the same model there's lots of variety. You find one that feels and sounds good, buy it. And you will find one! Thinking about specs and appointments and stuff is all wrong. Just play a lot and trust the guitar.

You can get yourself into a rockin' twangin' Tele monster for under $500, easy.

One bit of Tele wisdom to remember when you're trying them... make sure to work the volume and tone controls. Unlike a lot of guitars, Teles often sound their best when you back them off a bit. They're just "too much" wide open. And bring an overdrive pedal you trust for this, so you can get a sense of how the Tele behaves with a bit of gain and those controls backed off. A good Tele should be incredibly dynamic on the bridge pickup with the controls backed off, and sweet and full sounding in the middle position.
 

John C

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
7,452
If you're a Strat player you will feel more at home with a body cut. American Deluxe has one I think the American Standard may have one also.

That's true - I had an American Standard Tele with the body cut for a while; I would definitely call the American Standards with that spec (which would be from March 2012 through their discontinuation a couple of months ago) a "Tele for Strat players". The bridge will feel like a Strat bridge to your hand, and to a certain extent it will be in-between a traditional Tele and a hard-tail Strat. That being said it can wind up being the gateway to more traditional Teles (no contours, vintage bridge, etc). I wish I had that Tele back but as they say sometimes life gets in the way.

USA Fender models with a back contour would be:

1972-1981 Tele Deluxe (the 2-humbucker Tele) - plus the various reissues of that model (some USA, mostly MIM)
1995-1997 Tele Plus (version 2 model)
1998-2015 American Deluxe Tele (excludes ash body versions made from 2004-2012*)
March 2012-2016 American Standard Tele
2016-present American Elite Telecaster
2017-present American Professional Telecaster Deluxe Shawbucker (modern version of the old 70s Tele Deluxe)

*For some reason in 2004 Fender split the American Deluxe Telecaster into 2 models - the "regular" alder body version kept the body contour but the now-separate ash model was uncontoured (and also had no binding). They kept that up through the next update, which happened for the 2010 models, but when the American Standards got the body contour in March 2012 the American Deluxe Ash Tele model did as well.

Fender did away with the body contour on the "regular" American Professional Telecaster.

You can also get contours on any of the solid body G&L ASATs (unless they have other options that prevent contours like binding)
 
Messages
5,573
Baja would be my first choice, but the MIM Standard is a great lower-cost guitar if cash is tight. The Roadworns I played have been good too; taller frets if I recall correctly? You might also like to check out the Modern Player Tele Plus; pine body, tapped humbucker, strat middle and Tele neck. The one I played was very nice but weighed a ton.
 

cap217

Senior Member
Messages
3,410
What I have found in the cheaper teles is that some dont sound like teles. For some reason the american and american deluxes are more modern than what a tele should be to me. I suggest playing them and finding what you like. If you want the true 50-60s tele on a budget then the baja is probably the best pick. Once you step up you get the fender avri series for 900-1200 used. Then after that you are looking at custom shop nocaster or danocasters.
 

sturge

Member
Messages
691
As a long time strat guy I always wanted a tele. Few years back I started looking into it and was initially interested in the 52 Reissue which had similar 7.25 radius neck as my strat. As I played a bunch at various Guitar Centers I found that I really liked the Am Standards with 9.5 radius and med jumbo frets. Started looking on CL for deals and found a 2006 Am Std with Natural Finish and maple neck. It was like new...black pick guard was barely scratched and the natural swamp ash look was beautiful. Picked it up for $600 with a nice hard case. I ended up putting Dimarzio T hot in bridge and added locking tuners. Body is traditional (no cutaway) which is fine to me...if I want the feel of a strat I'll play the strat! I bring both guitars to every gig and love the difference between the two. I was surprized how much of a great rock sound the tele produces...many talk about the twang but kick in a little OD or dirt and it jumps into some badass rock tones. Love it!
 




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