Which Telecaster to buy???

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by Nuclearfishin, Mar 15, 2008.

  1. Nuclearfishin

    Nuclearfishin Supporting Member

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    I've never owned a Fender before but am in the market for a telecaster. I went to the musiciansfriend website and was shocked to see over 40 different variants of the tele. Man, how many different ways are there to build a tele? Anyhow, I'm just looking for something with that classic twang without having to break the bank. Which models should I be looking at to get that classic sound? My budget is around $500-$1,500. I don't necessarily need to spend the max, just enough to get the right tone in the ballpark. What are the pros and cons of the models in this price range? Any other suggestions?

    Thanks!
     
  2. guitarfish

    guitarfish Member

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    The new 2008 Tele's are AMAZING. New design, just came out a month or so ago. They will be close to a grand. Lower than that, the Fender Baja Tele gets a LOT of love. Use the Search and you'll find lots of good feedback.
     
  3. Sean French

    Sean French Supporting Member

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    At the top end of the budget the '52 RI thin skins are fantastic guitars.
    At the lower end of the budget the Baja's are good too.
    If you are buying blind then I highly recommend you don't use MF.
    I would recommend Wildwood or Dave's Guitar.
    They will go through their stock for you and give you tone reports.
    I like Tele's that have some meat in the tone as well as twang and have found usually but,not always 7.25 lbs to 8 lbs to be what I prefer tonally.
    Of coarse there are always exceptions.
    A good Tele will change your life.;)
     
  4. Mike9

    Mike9 Supporting Member

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  5. Csapo

    Csapo Gold Supporting Member

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    Which do you prefer maple or rosewood boards?...
     
  6. Nuclearfishin

    Nuclearfishin Supporting Member

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    I like the maple necks--there's just something about them that gives them that classic look. Mike9, that's a nice looking guitar you built but the way I go through guitars, I think I should keep it stock in case I decide to unload it. This will be my first venture in the Fender arena so if it ends up being a guitar I don't play much, I think it might be easier to unload if it's stock.
     
  7. GCDEF

    GCDEF Supporting Member

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    I just picked up a new American Deluxe. I've owned a lot of high end guitars, and this has to be up there with the best of them. Flawless neck, great sounding pickups, very tight, controlled sound, belly cut makes it comfortable to play. Not quite as bright as some Teles, but for all around fantastic playability and sound, it really is one of the nicest guitars I've ever seen.
     
  8. Unburst

    Unburst Member

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    '52 RI, it's a classic.
     
  9. Zuper

    Zuper Supporting Member

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    If you're going Fender, the '52 RI are great. If you're willing to go used and boutique, check out Suhr and Anderson.
     
  10. ungarn

    ungarn Member

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    Find a used, '52 Vintage Hot Rod...looks classic, has modern features, unbeatable in my book, and around $1200...rock on!

    On the cheap...find an older, made in Korea, G&L Classic Tribute...awesome $300 geetar.
     
  11. XKnight

    XKnight Member

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    I'd look around for a used Custom Shop Tele. Great bargains abound. If you're not hung up on getting a Fender some other great alternatives are G&L, Suhr, Melancon and Rice Custom to name a few. Most can be had either new or used in your price range.
     
  12. karmadave

    karmadave Member

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    People will have lots of opinions, based on their own tastes & preferences. First, decide what features are most important to YOU. Maple or Rosewood fretboard? Vintage of Modern neck radius? What type of music do you like to play? Country players generally prefer an early 50's style Tele. Find one that works best for your style.

    That's my $.02...

    -KD
     
  13. Home Grown Tele

    Home Grown Tele Member

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    Best bet is to go to every local music store you can find and play every one they have. You'll find one that you can't do without.

    Nothing beats hands on playing to help you decide which one you want.
     
  14. gkoelling

    gkoelling Member

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    For a first Tele I'd say look for an ash body and maple neck.

    The 52RI gets a lot of positive press but be ready for the smaller radius. If the transition from your current electric to the Tele is uncomfortable, the Tele won't get played.

    The Hot Rod Tele has a larger radius and the Highway 1 Texas Tele has a 12" radius.

    Home Grown's advice is spot-on. Go play as many as you can find and have fun doing it.
     
  15. digthosetubes

    digthosetubes Senior Member

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    What did you end up doing?
     
  16. riverastoasters

    riverastoasters Member

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    A: There are like nine billion classic Tele sounds. Like most of early Zeppelin, for example. It's a Tele, and by now it's classic. So yeah, don't think it's all about James Burton.

    B: Go to every store you can in the area that has Teles. Play every one of them that has a single coil bridge pickup, and some that don't. Then you will know which one you want.
     
  17. richpeax

    richpeax Member

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    I bought the American Deluxe Ash in butterscotch(with the S1). Noiseless pickups and that tele sound, this is a keeper. I'd recommend it.
    I did not like the C shape neck on a regular Deluxe model and that satin finish was lame on the neck.
     

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