Fender Squier Stratocaster Review: How Good Is It?

squier stratocaster
5/5 - (25 votes)

In the Stratocaster market, while the Fender Stratocaster has the most iconic electric guitar designs, the Squier mainly focuses on producing low-cost Stratocasters and Telecaster guitars. So the answer is which one, Fender Stratocaster or Squier Stratocaster guitar was born for you? This article will help you to find the answer. Let’s get started! 

Is Squier The Same As Fender? 

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Squier and Fender – what are the differences?

We believe that there has been some confusion about two different types of guitars, Squier and Fender. Is Squier strat really a Fender? And what does the printed note “Squier by Fender” on the guitar’s headstock mean? 

If it is important for you to know the differences between the two brands, here are our answers. Let’s take a closer look at Squier Strat by Fender

Squier is owned by Fender. But don’t worry, just because the Squier is owned by Fender, it does not mean that a Squier is a Fender guitar. Even though lots of people said that a Squier Strat by Fender kinda looks like the Fender Strat, they are not the same in many ways. 

So, what are the differences between a Squier Strat by Fender and a Fender Strat? The Fender Strat is made in the United States, or sometimes Mexico, the Squier Stratocaster guitars are made in Asia. And yes, just like you think, there are different levels of quality control between countries. So the origin of it might be a factor for you to consider when buying. 

Another difference between the Squier Strat and the Fender Strat is the quality of parts and prices of the guitars. This difference can be seen clearly in the price tag, and it is reported that overall, most Squiers cost less than Fender. The reason for this is that most Squiers use lower quality parts. But there are still lots of exceptional situations, some Squiers that cost more than a Fender, and some Fenders use lower quality parts than some Squiers. 

In the last decade, Squiers has improved much better in quality. It’s quite common to get a Squier that can play as well as a Fender. And the appearances of them are quite alike, just look at this picture: 

fender squier stratocaster

Guitar brands are tricky and licensed versions of brand names make things become much more confusing. But please remember that a brand name is just a marketing factor. Finding a guitar is finding the quality and choosing the one that suits you most. 

If you are still thinking about this, we recommend you compare the different Squier models to the Fender models in similar price ranges. This might help you decide whether all those Fender- Squier differences are important or not. 

Fender Squier Stratocaster
Guitar Bridge System Tremolo
Body Material Poplar
Neck Material Type Maple
String Material Type Steel

Different Series of Squier Stratocasters

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The Squier Stratocaster has three main series

 

In this article, we will give you the most detailed information about three different types of Squier. Here are these three Squier Stratocaster series: 

  • Squier Bullet

Squier Bullet is the one that has the lowest cost series by Squier. It is also designed as a no-thrills entry-level guitar. 

  • Squier Affinity

This Squier Affinity is a popular series with better quality parts than the Bullet but at reasonable prices. Lots of people choose this series. 

  • Squier Contemporary

This series is a very special one since it moves away from the traditional strat configuration. Due to that, it has access to different tones and music styles. 

Even though there are lots of other models from Squier over the years, like the Squier Standard series or the Squier Classic Vibe series, in this sharing, we will focus on only those three series that we have mentioned. Those are the most common ones that many guitarists use. 

It is commonly seen that most guitarists who are interested in a Squier Stratocaster will bring one which suits them most in these three series homes. 

Review about Squier Bullet Stratocasters

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The Squier Bullet Stratocaster

 

We will start with the Squier Bullet Stratocasters, the cheapest series in all three types of Squier Stratocasters. The Squier Bullet Stratocasters were designed for beginners- the first one who studies guitar, so it is commonly seen with a newbie student. 

The Bullet Stratocasters are normally sold in a starter pack at a low price for those who begin to study guitars. We think this is a great option for parents thinking about buying their child a very first guitar. 

Although there has been a lot of advice about buying the best quality guitar you can afford at the beginning, this Bullet Stratocasters choice is kinda a better option for parents who aren’t sure whether their child will use guitars forever or not. A Squier Bullet and a small practice amp is a great choice for parents, without any risk and worries that their children will not use guitars. 

A difference between the Bullet and the Affinity is the product materials’ quality. Since the Bullet uses a Basswood body and ceramic pickups, these materials are the main things to keep the price low. 

However, the tremolo of Bullet Squier Stratocasters can bring on some struggles in tremolo. Low price guitars like the Bullet ones are quite difficult in tuning stability and one press of the tremolo system is often enough to put the whole guitar out of tune. 

And yes, the tremolo is a real problem for some people. If you are looking for a serious guitar career, the Bullet Squier Stratocaster is definitely not a good choice. But if you are a newbie or a person who is newly interested in guitars, the Squier Bullet might be the best choice. 

And if you are on a tight budget, we think the Squier Bullet would be worth checking out. But once you have some experience in this area, you might wanna check out the Affinity series – a higher level of Squier Stratocaster. 

In conclusion, here are some pros and cons of the Squier Bullet series:

  • Squier Bullet Pros: 
  • Low prices
  • Same Stratocaster look as more expensive models 
  • Better quality than the other Strat copies
  • Squier Bullet Cons: 
  • Low- quality parts 
  • Tuning stability issues

Review about Squier Affinity Stratocaster: Review, Pros and Cons

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The Squier Affinity Stratocaster – the greatest start for guitar career

 

It is reported that the Squier Affinity Stratocaster is popular because of its low price and good quality. Compared to the Squier Bullet, the Affinity ones use an Alder body and higher quality pickups. Once you want to buy the electric guitars, the quality of the pickups is the most important thing that comes to your mind in comparing them one by one.

The Affinity may not really impress when compared to those expensive guitars, but with that range of price, we all think that the Affinity Squier Stratocaster is a solid choice. With this price range, other electric guitars usually have fairly cheap pickups. 

If you are a beginner who really thinks seriously about guitar, a Squier Affinity might be a good choice. If in the future the pickups become real problems, it’s quite easy to upgrade them. 

The single coils give you a chance to play the nice bluesy tones that the Stratocaster is famous for. The humbucker in the bridge position also helps you access tighter and punchier tones for rhythm parts. If you are really interested in the heavier or harder styles of music that need to use humbuckers, please make sure that you have read about the Squier Contemporary series. Reading those instructions might give you a decisive conclusion. 

And yes, here are some pros and cons of Squier Affinity Stratocasters we have concluded. Let’s take a closer look: 

  • Squier Affinity Pros: 
  • Fairy low cost
  • Good quality build and fairly high consistently 
  • Have an expensive model look just like the Stratocaster
  • Better quality parts and pickups than the Bullet series. 
  • H-S-S configuration available as an option 
  • Squier Affinity Cons
  • There are quite better quality guitars in the guitar market.

In conclusion, if you are considering starting a career with guitar, or maybe just using it for a long time, the Squier Affinity Stratocaster is worth buying. 

Review about the Squier Contemporary Stratocaster: Review, Pros and Cons

squier contemporary stratocaster
The best one in all three series – the Squier Contemporary series

 

You may not like the pickup configuration in a standard Squier Stratocaster Guitar depending on the styles of music you listen to and your personal preferences. Guitarists can receive the Strat-style with numerous pickup setups due to the Squier Stratocaster Contemporary series.

The traditional Stratocasters come with three single-coil pickups. And because of these three coil pickups, the traditional Stratocasters are suitable for many different styles of music, but not all styles. There are not many metal or hard rock guitarists who use traditional single-coil pickups. 

Traditional single-coil pickups have disadvantages such as producing a lot of noise or so on. When you turn up the gain on a single-coil guitar, you will hear a wash of hum and buzz. If you prefer a punchy rhythm section or tight riffing, this isn’t a great choice for you.

A Squier Stratocaster, an Affinity series one with a humbucker, is kinda a good choice, but it may not be enough for your needs if you take a serious music career. In this situation, we highly recommend you to consider having a Contemporary Squier Stratocaster guitar. 

squier strat by fender

The Contemporary Squier Stratocaster has two active humbuckers. Active pickups and passive pickups, and they produce such different tones. If you want to practice on a high-output signal with a punchy tone, this is the best choice in all the Squier Stratocaster guitar series. 

The Contemporary Squier Stratocaster guitar also has a licensed Floyd Rose bridge and locking nut, a great difference from the traditional tremolo in Strats. This thing will give a guitarist an opportunity to use the tremolo without any worries of the guitar going out of tune suddenly.

Floyd Rose bridges are kinda more complicated than normal ones, so we all think that this is not a really good option for beginners. Even though the Contemporary Squier Stratocaster has various great benefits, from tuning stability and being able to control the tremolo arm in aggressive ways, you really need a lot of experience to handle this. 

In conclusion, we think that the Contemporary Squier Stratocaster Guitar has a body shape looking alike just like a Fender one, but the features on this guitar series make them very different, from how to play it and its sound. 

Here are some pros and cons that we’ve seen in the Squier Contemporary Stratocasters. You might want to take a closer look: 

  • Squier Contemporary Pros: 
  • Classic Strat-style that works for harder styles of music
  • Good quality parts and build consistency
  • Various different configurations like Floyd Rose style bridge 
  • Squier Contemporary Cons: 
  • Many other brands produce better guitars at this price
  • More expensive than many Fender brand guitars. 

FAQs 

Here are some questions you might want to take a closer look at before deciding which Squier Scatostrater you should buy. Check out those four questions and answers about the Squier Stratocaster.

  • Where is Squier by Fender guitars made? 

Squier guitars have been produced in a wide range of nations over the years, including Japan, Korea, Mexico, India, China, Indonesia, and even the United States. Squier Stratocaster guitars are now built-in Asia, in places like China, Korea, and Indonesia.

For the best answer, just check the back of the guitar’s headstock to find out where it was made. 

  • What is the best Squier guitar from the best one to the worst one? 

The best Squier Stratocaster guitar is one that meets both your needs as a player and your financial budget. It will be the best option of using Bullet for some guitarists. It could be an Affinity or a Contemporary for other guitarists. 

If we had to rank the Squier Strat Fender guitars based on the quality from the best to worst, we would say: Starting with Contemporary, Affinity and the last one is Bullet. 

  • Are Fender and Squier parts interchangeable? 

Most of the parts between such a Fender and a Squier will be interchangeable. Pickups and electronics on electric guitars are generally interchangeable. This means that replacing the pickups on your Squier with a higher-end Fender pickup (such as their superb noiseless pickups) is quite simple.

It’s difficult to say whether or not guitar necks will be interchangeable. Small differences in necks between Squier and Fender guitars may or may not allow you to switch them out. Because of the width of the neck pocket, the shape of the neck joint, and a few other considerations, locating a neck that perfectly fits seems unlikely.

  • How to make Squier Stratocaster guitars sound better? 

According to experts, there are many things you can do to make your Squier Stratocaster sound better. The most effective way, in our opinion, is upgrading the pickups since those pickups have the biggest impact on your tone. Changing those cheap pickups with higher-quality pickups will definitely improve your tone. 

We highly recommend you to get a set of Fender’s Noiseless Pickups. These pickups will remove hum and noise, which will improve your tone so much. 

 

Ending

And that’s the most detailed information about Squier Stratocaster as well as Squier strat by Fender guitars that we can give you. We hope that with our sharing, you can choose the best one that fits you perfectly. If you find our sharing is helpful, please share it with your loved ones and hit our subscribe button to get the latest notification on music equipment. 

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