The American Standard Stratocaster® guitar is the same great best-selling, go-to model it has always been, and now it’s upgraded with aged plastic parts and full-sounding Fender Custom Shop Fat ’50s pickups. The latest iteration of our time-honored classic, it is the very essence of Strat tone and remains a beauty to see, hear and feel.
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I've been playing fender strats since the '80s. I tried out the new American Standard (2014 version) this past weekend and was really surprised. It was the first American Fender Strat I have played in my life that felt horrible. The neck felt cheap. The frets weren't up to standard with even their MIM guitars. Played this through a 65 RI Deluxe Reverb and it sounded thin. How is that even possible? Very disappointed. I love my strats and wouldn't trade them for the world.
Idahofenderplayer owns this item
I purchased this guitar for my wife around 18 months ago. It's a 2012 Sienna Sunburst with maple fretboard. The fit and finish on this guitar is absolutely flawless! The fret work and neck just perfect on it too. The quality of this Strat is better than any American Strat I've ever played! And that's from any decade! My only suggestions to Fender would be please spend a little more time setting up the radius on your guitars. A great guitar - well done Fender!
BassMan66 owns this item
When I first picked up an American Standard at my local Guitar Center, it was the single most perfect guitar I've ever played. So then I bought one. Hoping for that same out of the box quality, I was disappointed with what I got. For starters, the trem arm is impossible to get to a happy medium, it's either too loose or way too tight. Two, there's more fret buzz on this guitar then you can imagine. At least on mine there is. This could very well vary from guitar to guitar. Third, whenever I bend or use the trem (which is a lot; my inspiration is David Gilmour) I have a terrible time staying in tune. I'm always finding myself flat. All in all, it's a great guitar, it just has some things that you wouldn't expect out of a top of the line Fender. I'll be taking it to a luthier to check these things out, and hopefully I'll have it playing like a real Strat in no time.
bassman87 owns this item
1. Fender didn't take any care with the frets. They sprayed the maple neck with lacquer, and didn't polish the lacquer off the frets! When I would bend notes, there would be a horrible grinding and screeching noise, coupled with decreased sustain and less playability. Very disappointed as I had to spend money to replace the strings TWICE, and get the frets polished!
2. Factory setup was not correct; Fender, please make sure that the action radius matches the neck radius, I had to spend money to get that fixed too.
This was my first purchase from Fender, and definitely not a good first impression. Fender, you may be making the best guitar in the world, but lack of quality control REALLY ruins your reputation.
Nonetheless the guitar sounds fine when fixed and set-up properly.
This is the one I wanted - an American made Stratocaster. I played several different Strat models, and this Mystic Red American Standard spoke to me with its Custom Shop pickups, comfortable neck, and ease of playability. The build quality was very nice: good fret work, nice straight neck, and good fit and finish in the wood work, paint, and plastic trim pieces. In the store, the tone was just OK, but I chalked that up to unfamiliar amp and surroundings, and relatively low volume.
Once I got it home and did a full set up, I found that the pickups were a bit low. Everything else was nicely set up, with only mild tweaks needed to suit me. I stiffened up the tremolo and raised the pickups to recommended offsets from my set string height, and WOW! The guitar absolutely sings! The depth and quality of its tone is excellent. From full, round, smooth clean tones, to crunched up bluesy grit, I couldn't be happier. One of the all time great appeals of the Strat to me is its ability to cover a huge range of styles and tones. This one delivers very nicely.
tarheelbob owns this item
Not the most vintage or modern Strat in Fender's range, but hard to fault on any level. Build quality is good. Nice feel and great playability. The Custom Shop Fat '50 are a nice upgrade in the pickup. Preferred the vintage trem but the 2 point trem is flawless, stay in tune.
Axe11s7 owns this item
Fat 50s, responsive trem, great feel, unexpected tone, best Strat under 2k, top 5 that I have ever played. I want another, maybe two.
mayracing101 owns this item
I always wanted a Stratocaster.
Nothing else. I wanted a Made in the USA Fender Stratocaster. And one day, I got one =)
Olympic White with a Maple neck. Beautifully finished, tone to die for. Everything was set up perfectly, it played wonderfully.
I bought this years ago, it was my first purchase as a serious musician, with a working band. I actually sold it to a friend from another band a year ago, as I needed the money to pay for more important comitments.
Nonetheless, I just bought another.
Can't keep away! These are perfect
Only thing I would recommend changing, is the pickups.
Because they got that sound right, but slap a set of Jeff Beck Noiseless Singles into one.....
You will thank yourself over and over again
Shayne Manic owns this item
I got this mid-2012 model used couple of months ago. It was totally unplayed. I'm now ready for a review.
I completely disassembled it to check its conditions and I had the possibility to evaluate the high craftmanship level of this instrument. The neck joint to the body is tight, the neck holes in the body are just large enough to allow neck screws to pass through them without biting the body wood, which you would expect from high level bolt-on guitars, but its not always the case. The finish is rounded off around all the body holes to avoid chipping, nice. The finish looks thin, you just can see the wood grains if you carefully look. The neck is well finished, confortable with its rounded frets.
Features and Tone:
I love the neck satin finish on the back, it really helps against hand-sticking. However the neck size is to the thin side according to me.
Pickups fat 50 sound really really good, but it took me some time to set-up the height and to balance the tone. I ended up with pickups almost flush with the pickguard. Neck is full and rich, position 2 and 4 sound like a Stratocaster...with lot of sparkle and quack. Position 5 is a little bit too trebly to my ears, but you just need to play with Tone control to cut some high frequencies and find a really interesting sweet spot. Position 3 I seldomly use in a Strat so I cannot describe it.
The thing I'll change for sure is the nut, I expected a bone nut on such a level instrument. I also had some tuning issues which lasted couple of weeks when moving from factory strings 0.09 to heavier strings 0.10, probably due to too tight nut slots.
Sustain-wise this guitar rings both unplugged and plugged-in. Sustain out of a Blues Junior with an overdrive and a tube screamer is never ending.
Last but not least, the protective case is really light and it assure a high level protection to such a level instrument.
This guitar sounds so good that you will not be able to put it down.
guitarman1984 owns this item
Up until now, I've been playing a Les Paul Studio and to be honest (close your ears Fender), I still love that guitar. However, I was looking for something at the other end of the solid body electric guitar sonic spectrum and after an afternoon at my favourite guitar shop, zeroed in on an American Standard, Olympic White with a maple fretboard, and laid it away for Christmas. I just finished paying it off, brought it home, tuned it up, plugged it in and started playing. What a beautiful instrument: warm sound, clean, and comfortable to play with all the sparkle and shimmer you'd expect from a Strat! I love the Fat '50 pickups. Right out of the box, it was set up perfectly - intonation, pickup height, truss rod, ... It sounds great through my Blues Junior III amp too. Now I have 2 go-to sounds depending on what I am playing.
PB66 owns this item
I haven't played a Strat since the early two thousands. Once exposed to a plus 10k vintage weightless incredible sounding richness of tones type strat, my 79 tank just didn't work. I own a few fenders. My prize is a custom shop 59 Tele deluxe. So..I noticed my les Paul standard remained in the case over the last few years. Took it to guitar center and swapped it for the Olympic white 2013 standard. I'm very much in love with this instrument surprisingly fast. Incredible sparkling tones. All the Hendrix rhythmic glassy gloss. You immediately hear famous guitar lines once you start tone adjustments. The nut is sticking. I will swap today. Also swapped in fender locking tuners. So far so good. There is a tuning technique on YouTube and this strat has been able to spring back in tune like the technique says it would. The guitar feels and sounds great in the hands. You will have a hard time putting it down.
Martianluther owns this item
This is the first time in 20 years I've really given a Strat an actual chance . I started going to an open jam night at a local bar and jamming with some talented musicians on blues night, I soon realized I was missing something (I was playing a les paul traditional lol) I wasn't getting the sound I was looking for all night. I have a friend that works in a local music store so I went in and started talking about it when I looked over and saw my strat sitting in the corner all alone, so I started jamming on it and was surprised how extremely comfortable it felt and sounded not plugged in. So i plugged it and played for about 2 hours, people walked by and complimented my playing so I decided to buy it. As soon as I got home I decided to check it over for the real flaws, truss rod, height, intonation, tuning blaa blaa ... nothing was wrong everything was bang on and I've NEVER had a guitar be bang on NEVER! So if you like blues rock and even hard rock I'd recommend this guitar with no second thought. My LP and pointy guitars havent been seeing half the attention lately lol. Anyways thanks Fender, I'm really happy with you guys !
This 2012/13 model is a huge step forward compared to earlier ones, all because of the Custom Shop pickups, which sound amazing, nothing like any non CS Fender I've ever played. Its playability is second to none and unlike any Mexican made model you can safely do whatever you want with that tremolo and never think of getting out of tune, The neck shape is perfect for my hand, though I have mostly played Gibson Les Paul guitars for the last few years. I have not owned a Fender guitar for 4 years since I sold my Mexican Standard as I was seriously dissatisfied with it, and those TexMex pickups on older American Standard Strats sounded a bit too muddy to my ear, but this time I really think Fender created a perfect model for my needs. I will make a choice between this and the HSS model and write another review as soon as I have more to say.
Bought a 2012 American Standard the other week in Jade Pearl Metallic and RW fingerboard.
The colour simply stuns me daily! (I might be still in the HNGD rush, but it sure beats the autumn blues)
Intonation, sound, set-up and playability are fantastic. Minus: frets are a little sharp on the edges and so is the neckplate-cover.
Supplied SKB case is bulky (will swop to vintage tweed once recovered from the $ investment)
Without getting "dreamy" the guitar almost feels organic and very well balanced.
I also own&play a Duessenberg Starplayer TV and a Yamaha 611 (P90/Humbucker), which are both not bad either; but this is 100% #1 and can't wait to get home every day and pick it up! Good job Fender, thanks.
Jacob von Hogflume owns this item
I recently purchased an American Standard Stratocaster, and I really couldn't be happier. The tone that comes out of this thing, is simply amazing, even clean. The fat 50's pickups are the bomb. The quality and craftsmanship are second to none. The guitar is beautiful and the case it came with is also excellent. I upgraded from a LP Studio that was so heavy that it actually hurt my back to play it for too long. The feel of the neck is hard to describe, but I honestly feel that my playing ability has been improved by this guitar, and the scale of the neck allows me to find some of my trouble chords a lot easier. I had gone down to the guitar store with my mind set on a completely different guitar, but after playing this one, there was absolutely no way I could leave there without it. IMHO this is the best guitar I've ever played.
KempoMan owns this item
Fender have really done something special this year with their line, I am glad I waited to reintroduce myself to fender. I have been playing for 20 years this year, and a month ago decided to buy a strat to celebrate (In honour of my first electric which was also a strat). I decided through impatience and on impulse to visit a guitar shop as I got out of work early and had a spare bit of money. The nicest playing strat they had in there was a standard mexican. I didn't plug any of them in knowing that anything coming out of an amp would only confuse me and could be upgraded/ changed later anyway. That thing played better than strats that were 6 times more expensive.
It played so well in fact that I decided to commit only a month later and upgrade to an American. Knowing that I will be more inclined to get personally invested in the instrument ... silly really but I am sure you know what I mean by that.
I digress, this thing is beautiful. 3 tone sunburst with a maple neck. Understated and beautiful. Plays unbelievably, feels easy and comfortable ... familiar.
Right now a comparison between the mex and american standards both 2013. Both incredible guitars. Oddly, the mexican sounds more like the strat in my head. It has that hot, hendrix, raw, dirty strat sound. That real vintage rock/ blues sound.
The american is a very different beast, it's very refined and restrained. It is wonderful but I almost yern for both now that I have upgraded. I may indeed pick up another mexican strat, or see what 2013 mex teles are like.
A very happy customer anyway. The only thing I would change about my strat is to have a nitro finish on the body ... that is literally it and it's a matter of ageing cosmetics so it's really not that important.
sacredgeometry owns this item
My first Fender was a new mid 60's Jaguar way back when I was in high school. Since then I've owned several Gibsons and a truck load of Strats and Teles from MIM models to AVRIs. I had been playing a Les Paul R8 and grew tired of the unresponsive tone pots, chunky neck and overall weight, I played several AmSpcl and AmStd Strats and the contrast in playability and comfort from my LP was striking. I was home again! My 3 color burst is very resonant unplugged and the Fat 50 pickups are great at producing everything from a rich, full and sparkly clean to a thick overdriven growl. With the linear, responsive tone pots they produce a wide range of usable Strat tones and I love that the bridge PU's tone can now be controlled, The satin finished neck and perfectly contoured body make this Strat a breeze to play comfortably. There is nothing to hold you back and compensate for with this guitar. It's a total package for me and spanks any previously owned Strats tonewise for sure!
If you want a good looking, comfortable, easy to play and tonally balanced electric guitar this is it. Play one and you'll be glad you did.
jels48 owns this item
I owned a fender some years back and traded it for a gibson les paul studio with burst bucker pros. The guitar was made overseas and just didn't feel right. Anyways, recently I was in our local guitar shop browsing and came across a 2012 american standard strat in olympic white with a maple fret board. Looked great so I sat down, played it, and fell in love with it. This guitar just sings and the sustain is great. I like to string my guitars with 11s and you can just feel whatever note your playing radiate through the whole guitar. The fat 50s pickups can go from real clean and chimey to down right dirty and the amount of tones i get through the 5 way selector vs. my les paul makes it a winner. The maple neck and fretboard is also extremely fast and comfortable. Still own my les paul but my strat is the new go-to guitar.
RMangler owns this item
Basically just unwrapped this AmStd/Rosewood board, tuned it and ran through some scales and R&R on the clean channel. Tone is exactly what one would expect from a Strat, clean, sparkly with lots of spank and just enough sustain to satisfy. The fits on the guitar are tight and true and the finish is Candy Cola which is cherry clean and perfect, not to mention absolutely stunning. The neck and frets are baby smooth the satin finish on the back of the neck is lightning slick. I've had a couple of 70's vintage strats in the past and there can be a lot said for them, but this Strat imo surpasses them easily. No doubt it was made with great care by real professionals and may soon ascend to being my #1 as I'm considering putting my old Tele back in it's case, give it a rest and rock out on this great guitar. Thank you Fender for carrying on Leos dream so remarkably well!
Marcostrumm owns this item
I bought a cheap Squier back 15-20 years and the fretboard just turned me away so it sat in the corner until a friend offered me $100 for it.
Since then I've had a Custom Shop Washburn, cheap Parker PRB, and recently a Asian Fender Telecaster with dual humbuckers.
Coming from a fretboard with 16" radius I was affraid that the 9.5" radius would cause issues with fretting out below the 12th fret.
Got it home and jammed away thru a BlackStar HT-1RH with the amp volume dimed and gain at 50%, guitar volume on 7, the tone controls are some of the most reponsive I've yet to experience. The other thing that blows me away is the dynamics based on pick attack.
The Tele with Seymour HB's was muddy and fairly unresponsive to tone shaping (relative to this Strat) even with the coils split so I don't know if this was just a guitar/amp synergy thing or if the pots on the Strat are that much better???
Can't wait to plug this into my Mini-Z head and dual 10" Greenback Cab!
Would like to buy a Princeton Reverb reissue but read too many warranty issue posts...saving for ValveTrain or maybe an Allen.
I honestly don't know why a company as large and established as Fender can not build better handwired boutique amps that cost less than what you typically see from the rational boutique builders such as Allen, Dr. Z, ValveTrain, etc.... The EC stuff is a bit too expensive imo given what else can be had.
ESand65 owns this item
I bought one in '97. The last of the Misissippi swamp ash models. It was a natural finish, high-gloss with parchment, rw fb and some weirdo detent thing in the tone knob. Anyhow, loved the guitar, hated the pups (too thin, no mojo; which happens on bright ash bodies). Bought it cause it played so dreamy! Put in a hot rails (SD) in the bridge, that helped a bit but the overall response was still pretty flat. Re-pupped the whole thing with Lindey Fralin vintage hot staggered and it made this thing a madman for tone (we're talking Eric Johnson here). That was then - recently I wanted another for a blues/rock. Found a 2012 in Alder with burst finish, satin-y neck, rw fb. Again, plays like a dream but this time, the CS50s are right on point for tone. I've considered re-pupping with Klein S7, but I kind of don't see the point, this baby already cries and wails (Playing thru a Fender HR Deluxe Reverb, Fulltone OCD for a little bit of edge and saturation). I swapped the pickguard and trem cover for black tri-layer (bwb) for a taste of that SRV look. Kept the pups and controls white. It looks absolutely bawz on stage and it sounds just as good! I also have a Mexi Deluxe Player that I loaded with EMG SA for that Seattle sound. Every tool for the right job. But these US made Am Std have a little something more in how they are made that makes them play a lot sweeter for more sophisticated sound needed to pull off real blues/rock, or EJ type soloing than the Mexican cousins - something in the fingerboards I find makes it easier. I don't slide off the sides with the Am Std when I am really giving it some bendie beef. And there's extra little details like the extended fb on the Am models (that little overhang). As they say, the devil is in the details. I even like the change to those new (what i call) "Bottle Cap Opener" bridge saddles. I thought they would slop around, but they don't and it stays in tune just fine!
BillyBang owns this item
I recently had the chance to get an American made Fender Standard Strat. I went into a local music store and played almost every guitar in the shop. When I took the Olympic White with maple fretboard American Standard Strat down off the wall and played it, I was blown away. This guitar plays like a dream and fits like a glove. Everything just flows from your fingers to the guitar. The 9.5 fretboard radius has everything to do with this and it's perfect. I switched the bridge pickup out for Seymour Duncan Hot Rails because I needed a bit more power and growl for the styles of music I play. Now this guitar rocks. This is a great guitar and the craftsmanship is rock solid.
teddystrat owns this item
What is there to say about the Fender American Standard Strat that hasn't been said? Wow! What a difference! This is my second Fender Strat. My first was a made in mexico (MIM) standard strat. Some will say there isn't a difference. Wrong! Incredible difference between the sound! My American Standard with the Fat 50's pickups will put that argument to rest.
I'm am thrilled with my new Strat! From the hot pickups to the tone of the notes coming through my Fender Blues Deluxe Amp Hot Rod Deluxe Extension Cabinet. I was considering the Fender American Special Strat because of how hot the Tex-Mex pickups were, but the sound of the American Standard seems just as hot, because of the Fat 50's on this model. I try to play blues, classic rock and sometimes country with it and it works mostly through all genres of music just by switching settings and or effect pedals. This Strat won't ever be traded, like my MIM was! Definitely a keeper!
I just got my Sienna Burst Strat (which the Sienna Burst model is the only one that uses ash as a wood), and I could not be happier. I play everything from old blues to Metallica's "Master of Puppets" on this thing and it sounds great. I finally upgraded from my Mexican model which is not bad but the U.S. Strat is just miles ahead. I had a million problems with my MIM strat, mostly tuning and intonation. That thing just wouldn't intonate and I know I was doing it properly. My MIA Strat however took less than 5 minutes to set up properly and it was ready to go. The fat 50s pickups are the best, especially the bridge pickup. On my MIM Strat the bridge pickup was my least favorite. Whereas, the bridge pickup on the MIA Strat is my favorite, but not by far. The strings are very bendable whereas the strings on my MIM where kind of tough on bending. I could go on and on but I think you get the point.
Alethea67 owns this item
I have a '95 Olympic white American Standard Strat. It's all the electric guitar I've ever wanted. I only ever use the front 2 pickups although occasionally I'll use the back two for twang. I can't honestly say there's anything I'd change with this thing; it does exactly what I ask it to, even on a cheapo amp it sounds great. These days it's the only guitar I play because of some problems with my hands. I've played my Martin D-18 for years as my go-to, but I can only play it for a few tunes these days, so I use the Strat to back me up singing for my singer/songwriter gigs and for any session work; it plays so easily I can play it all day, which I sometimes do. Leo Fender changed the world when he came up with these guitars; I don't know if there's supposed to be some knock on mid-ninetees Fender, but mine is of the highest quality.
lsford777 owns this item
Tone would make anyone happy.
Fender has made perfection in tone here, will go down as one of their absolute best in top 3, if not number 1. I can not fault it.
I remember when I was in the shop, I had to focus on tone —not song or melody. So, I got a friend to play so I could hear. I'm happy with fender as they made me a perfect guitar, over the moon. Thank you fender and the crafts people at Corona, CA, USA.
MrStratUSA owns this item
I've played mostly the higher end MIM Stratocasters the majority of my playing life. I figured a bit of tweaking and there would be no real difference. I received my American Standard straight from the factory. I tuned it up and with no adjustments this guitar played perfectly - even without plugging in it was incredibly bright and resonant. The neck is smooth and the intonation spot on. I was really impressed with the fret edges and also the frets themselves. I should have been playing this type of guitar a decade ago at least. Highly recommended - also the Pearl Jade Metallic color is mesmerizing. In a word - wow.
GoRoryGo owns this item
I've spent all my life buying and playing copies. You can find some really good ones if you look long enough. When I thought it was about time to buy a "proper" guitar I went straight to the American Standards. My strat was ordered and when it came it was still in the cardboard box. I opened it, played it and it was perfect from the off. I have not had to do anything to it. Why didn't I buy one 40 years ago !!!!
ricdove owns this item
This guitar so far is garbage. It will not stay in tune for more than 2 minutes of playing - even worse with the whammy bar. I'm so pissed that I will never buy a fender ever again. I don't know if it's just my guitar someone screwed up on or if it's not assembled correctly but this is not what I expected from an American made fender ( I think my Squier was about 10 times better than this). up until this tuning issue happened it was definitely a five star guitar and my favourite guitar I have ever played so if is something simple or a defective guitar I will be sure to change my rating when it's fixed or replaced.
Officerjimlayhe owns this item
I used to play metal in my young ages. I bought an ibanez rg series guitar and was satisfied for several years . When i played my fender that was very very different than the guitars i had played before. American models of fenders are very expensive in my country so i ordered a strat this year from abroad. a strat was my childhood dream guitar. at 27 i got it and the magic became real. I love the sound, shape, tones, everything that this guitar gives me. Plug and do the magic.
abstruse owns this item
I started my love for Fender when i bought a Squire Strat in 2007. But when it started falling apart, I began searching for a new axe that could withstand ALOT of playing. I thought about buying a Gibson SGor Les Paul but tried a 2008 American Standard Stratocaster and was instantly in love with the rolled edges, comfortable contours and colour choices. I eventually scraped up enough money in 2009 to buy one and found a 2008 Sunburst maple neck Am. Standard in at my local music store which was the exact thing i was looking for. Since then it's been through school jazz band performances, tons of jam sessions, my first band's first gig, and HOURS upon HOURS of me playing the thing and it's still awesome. I've recently modded it a bit by stripping the american standard single coils (because they were noisy under high gain) along with the parchment scratch plate and replaced them with a tortoise shell plate and Dimarzio rail pickups to eliminate the noise and get a bit more girth from the instrument, now it's damn near perfect for me. My only minor complaint would be that the frets are a tiny bit too small and it was quite expensive (even more than the RRP it is now) at the time but that's probably because the guitar had just been revised and was still very new which is why i gave the value a 3, but other than that. Thanks Fender, you've given a Australian teenage boy many years of enjoyment and playing pleasure.
Far cry from the rafts of vintage reissues and attic-relic specifications, this is by all means, a modern Fender. The price point sits as what some might regard as upper-mid priced; just enough to expect the kind of trimmings that would accompany a post £1000 price tag (such as a nicely masked gloss finish on the face of the headstock, no load tone pot, etc.), but not so much that is totally out of reach for the working musician.
So what is this guitar if it sits in such a price category? It's not exactly brimming with vintage authenticity, but it is the kind of go-to guitar that nearly every user will find a sound they can use and few will be able to complain about the feel of the instrument. It really is, by nature of the Stratocaster, a jack-of-all-trades. This is not a bad thing at all either!
My own model is the sierra sunburst, rosewood 'board model - it has been a good workhorse for teaching for some time now and has been used for session work in musical pits, teaching, covers bands, funk bands and the like. My only complaint is that the pickups were too noisy and a little under-powered, as well as not having enough meat 'round the middle, but I am more picky (pun intended) than some, and the stock pickups will be more than grand for most. Some Dimarzio Area pickups, locking tuners, graphite nut and a little electronics modification, and I have the PERFECT all rounder strat for under £1300, with a nice SKB case to boot.
It would be nice to see a strat like this with something like a 12" 'board radius, but then with a good set-up, this strat is certainly quite the playable instrument regardless. It certainly has plenty of natural resonance to it and sounds reassuringly strat-like. At this price, I'd happily recommend buying one if you're after an abuse-friendly workhorse.
colmdon owns this item
Over the years the American Stratocaster has evolved, from what many call perfection, to near death. Fender, in its wisdom, finally realized they needed to get back to basics. In the '80s and '90s players were presented the American Standard. A really nice guitar, but it wasn't quite there yet. The edges of the neck and body contours were a little too angular and the pickups weren't quite right. Next the Strat changed again into the Am. Series Strat. The body contours and pickup cavity were more accurate and the neck was rolled to give it that broken in feeling. Yet there was still more that need to be done. The bridge block and saddles weren't right. The pickups were good, but they needed to be improved.
Here we have the new American Standard. It was better sounding, better playing, and better looking than ever. The pickups are the best I've ever heard on a Standard model. In fact when I went into a music store and played a different Strat models, the new Am Std. was the only guitar that caught my ear and struck that gut feeling I get when I find something really nice.
As for things I'm not happy with the new Am Std-- Colors, colors, color. I like most of the new colors, but they are so dark, even the blue one is too dark.
Over all, I really love this guitar and feel that it's a fine addition to the American Stratocaster.
I play electric guitar since 2009, so I'm not a professional, but I've been playing the Strat since the beginning: I started with a Squier by Fender, then last year in november I bought a 2011 American Standard. I know that there are a lot of wonderful guitars, but this is THE guitar in my opinion. It 'is very elegant and confortable. The design never gets old and I think the sunburst finish is a stroke of genius.
Thanks Clarence Leonidas
giovanni.cerri owns this item
I'm a novice guitarist and wanted a Strat forever. Played years ago and gave it up. I finally decided to buy an American Standard in 2011. Again, I'm not a great player by any means, but this guitar can make anyone sound good and will make you fall in love with playing. The tone and playability are second to none. If you are thinking about buying a Fender Strat, STOP THINKING...Do it and you will have an investment that will only increase in value and bring years of enjoyment.
mikemcdonald58 owns this item
I picked one of these up last year to upgrade from a mex strat. i love the american standard ash model.
i also own two gibsons a les paul tradional and a sg standard. but everyone know that only a strat sounds and play like
one. i play it more than any other guitars i own. i just like the feel of it.
anaconda44 owns this item
I own a Fender Stratocaster American Standard 2012.
I'm 36 years old and I can say that at Christmas I managed to fulfill
one of my greatest desires: to buy American Stratocaster!
I will try to be as impartial as possible in making a review of
this piece of the history of modern music.
American Standard Stratocaster is a great guitar and it allows you to
run different types of musical genres, from pop music to very loud Hard Rock.
The three classic single coils allow you to get 5 different configurations of tone (in my opinion the most interesting are the intermediate: neck + middle and middle + bridge).
The sound of this guitar is warm and inviting: this is a common feature of humbucker pickups.
I play it with a Fender amp type "Frontman 2012", and this guitar is not affected at the "coldness of transistors," indeed, the Custom Shop Fat '50s pickups retain their characteristic warmth, and the dynamics of the instrument is outstanding.
I want to report an improvement of the instrument also from the point of view of the controls: with the new wiring is now also possible to adjust the tone of the bridge pickup, so you can make the sound of the pickup responsible for the most part of the solos brighter or darker than other two pickups.
I think, however, that the best configuration is 3 single coils stratocaster,
because I believe that the humbucker at the bridge contributes to unbalance the sound of the instrument, and to exalt the bridge pickup to make it more powerful than to the other, it is sufficient to raise it a little compared to the other two.
As for the build quality of the instrument, I think that the Stratocaster is a great guitar, made with important woods, and also the painting doesn't show particular flaws.
The combination of maple, alder and rosewood helps to balance the different frequencies of sound, giving the instrument a distinctive bright sound, emphasizing, however, the characteristics of the single coils.
As for the playability of the instrument, I had a feeling when I went from playing a guitar with a thin neck to play the Stratocaster.
The shape of the neck is very convenient and also the height adjustment of the saddle allows an Action truly excellent.
The tremolo is well done and even after intensive use of bending lever, the tuning is adequate.
Logically Stratocaster has its merits, but it also has its flaws.
I think Fender should mount series locking tuners, to increase the strength of tuning.
Being picky, I would probably create a neck angle of 1 degree or so, to make a perfect action and I would improve the quality of the strap buttons.
I think, however, that the American Standard Stratocaster is a fantastic,incredible guitar, full of charm and sound quality.
I would suggest Fender to reduce the number of variants of the Stratocaster, avoiding confusion in the buyers, and helping to enhance even more the Standard model, which, I think, in some ways is better than the Deluxe model: other trademarks of Fender could treat instead Strat lower-end models.
vezioricciardi owns this item
I had never been a Strat player. Growing up in the 70's everyone I knew had a Strat and I always wanted something different so I went for Teles and a Les Paul. Then about 4 years ago I had some spare cash burning a hole in my pocket and was in my local guitar shop trying different guitars. As a bit of a last resort I picked up an American Standard Strat, sienna sunburst with maple neck. It just felt right. Great balance, a smooth and fast neck, light too. But best of all the wiring meant that I could roll off the treble on the bridge pickup and get a wider range of tones than I expected from a standard Strat.
WORTHINGREBELS owns this item
Have several other guitars but this is my favorite. Comfortable and easy playing from the first minute I picked it up. The set up right out of the box was perfect for my playing style. Just tuned her up and was ready to rip. Not sorry I opted for the American Strat. Well worth the few extra bucks.
psardo owns this item
After many years of being away from music, I decided to take up the guitar again. Although I had lessons throughout childhood, I was worried that I would have forgotten how to play. I decided to start slow and picked up a Squier. Was relieved to find out it was like riding a bike. Eventually, the Squier didn't do it for me anymore so I figured what the hell - Go For It!
My American Standard Strat is the sweetest thing I have ever played. It goes with just about any style or genre of music. It also keeps its tune even if I neglect it for a couple of months. Great sustain and tone. The feel of the instrument is so natural it doesn't weigh me down even after playing several hours. If you have a regular "Mexican" Fender (I also have a regular Tele) you will find the difference is remarkable. Make the investment in the American model. You wont be disappointed.
trshannon674 owns this item
I had 3 of them and sold all for other brands. But my heart was stolen by my old strats, never forgotten. Now luckily I had some money and I said: "I want a brand new strat." Now I am a proud owner of a black American Standard Stratocaster. Great action and so beautiful sound. Thanks Fender!
ninosmeraldi owns this item
I own an '88, Fire Red, maple neck MIA Strat. The absolute best guitar on the planet. There are other guitars that sound like a Strat, hundreds that look like a Strat, hundreds more that wanna-be-a-Strat. Only one in the world, though. Set up right, these play better than any other guitar I play, and I play a lot of guitars as a staff writer and gear tester. Use the Fender Factory setup, available on this website (it's easy guys), and you will be amazed at what a delight a MIA Strat is to play. Absolutely blow away all comers in battle. No contest.
For a secret killer tone, throw in a set of '69 pickups... eeoowww!! Jimi, eat your heart out, brother.
I went from a Squier Strat to the AM STD Strat - and boy what a pleasant change. It is so sweet to play.
jenshb owns this item
These American Series Strats are my favorite. You can play almost any style of music. They play well, they sound great, the look good.
I have 3 of this model manufactured in various years. They all sound slightly different from eachother due to various changes that were made during the time of manufacture. Various pickups, hardware and finish materials were used and it does make differences in tone. The rolled fingerboard edges make them very comfortable to play. Action can be set very low. This is a guitar I wouldn't be without. I think prices are just beginning to to reach a point where they become less of a solid value. Still a great guitar.
Randy1 owns this item
I must simply state the Fender Stratocaster is the best, most playable, versatile, beautiful guitar ever produced. Every instrument is not only comfortable and ergonomic their simply works of art. I own a 2010 sienna sunburst, I actually purchased her on a whim without a store demo via online. Beforehand i had just played acoustically (I had a squire strat but didnt like it too much), but decided i wanted the creme de la creme of guitars and purchased a Stratocaster, best purchase of my life. My purchase choice was guided predominately due to the wide variety of musicians who use it, and boy I'lll tell you so many people play them for a reason. No mater what style you play or what amp/effects you use they sound simply wonderful. dont go for the cheapies, go American Standard. save up the extra few bucks, you wont ever regret it, one of these guitars properly taken care of will last a life time. I thank Mr. Leo Fender for this work of art, rest in peace sir...
alexcrabtree owns this item
This strat is just a dream to play. The fit and finish are pure classic fender. The "Fat 50 s" pickups can give you so many classic Fender sounds, drop it down to the bridge and the surfer twang is their, pull up to the neck position and its fat creamy blues tones. Theirs a reason the strat has been the standard guitar for so many great artist.
Les Chrostowski owns this item
I have owned an American Standard Stratocaster since 2008. Mine is in Olympic White, with a maple neck. The first time I picked it up in the music store, I fell in love with the feel of the guitar. I just could not put it down. That was 5 years ago, and I am still playing it. The fit and finish are fantastic, and Fender's quality control is light years ahead of Gibson's. I own a lot of guitars, from several manufacturers, but I ALWAYS end up going back to this Strat. It is my go to axe, and with the addition of an aftermarket humbucker, it is versatile enough to do entire gigs with my rock cover band without changing guitars. I can't do that with any other guitar I own. I absolutely love this guitar!
deebolay123 owns this item
I got my first Fender guitar a Duo Sonic II in 1965 and then a used 1965 Fender Stratocaster in 1967 as well as a 1965 Fender Super Reverb amp and they are still great today. I have also bought many Fender Stratocasters over the years just to have new ones of different colors. You can buy one American Fender Strat and have it as a great guitar that's a keeper forever. The guitar is so comfortable to play and the pick ups sound great with sparkle and tight well defined lows. The guitars are well made and very durable. First is great sound, well made, and very comfortable that's easy to set up and play. Look at all the amazing players that have played Fender Strats, Jeff Beck, David Gilmour, Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Rory Gallagher, Mark Knophler, Ritchie Blackmore, Robin Trower, and the list goes on and on. Over the years Fender is always innovating and trying different things to satisfy everybody. There are so many possibilites and choices. The Fender Strat is a great guitar. The medium jumbo frets are the perfect size. Everything is right for a no nonsense go to guitar that is a keeper.
Ronstratlover9 owns this item
I got this when I wanted to get a nicer, 22-fret guitar than the Squier I started with. I compared this and the Deluxe, and went with this one, in the Ash Sienna Sunburst. I liked the sound on this one better for the price. To be honest, I picked the color, not the wood choice, and didn't realize it was an ash body, but I quite like it.
I've since gotten a Standard Strat, that plays almost as well - in fact, the frets on the American Standard seem a little lower than the Standard, which hasn't helped my admittedly beginner playing as much as it might. It did help me to realize how hard I fret, but it's kind of an expensive way to learn.
I play this more than anything, but I can't keep it out to just grab and play, due to small children around the house. I keep my Squier out for that. I've played it out at jam nights and such, and get lots of compliments on its looks.
rjim owns this item
I purchased an American Standard Strat in 2010, before they added the aged plastic parts and custom shop pickups for 2012. Mine is in Charcoal Frost Metallic with Rosewood neck. I have used a number of guitars over the years but still find the strat to be the most versatile and enjoyable to play due to the comfortable shape, weight and variety of tones I can get from it especially when paired up with my Fender Hot Rod deluxe amp. I have always been impressed with the build quality of the Fender guitars I have owned and the American Standard is no exception.
garyfm owns this item
This is an incredible guitar. Playability, tone, looks, feel, you name it, it has it. My favorite of all my many guitars. It is my "Blackie." You will never go wrong with a Strat, just look at the list of artists who have made the Strat their "go-to" guitar. It is hard to believe that you can get an American made guitar for this price! What are you waiting for?
Fingerstyle Rules owns this item
My first American Fender Strat. Bought in 2009 and after years still a great guitar. The playability is very good and the sound is warm with bright tones. Want a good reliable guitar with real Strat sound, do not hesitate (I did not) you will not regret it, I promise...
Marcello owns this item
Fender are famous for their guitars, particularly the 'Strat'. There is nothing about this guitar I would change. Bulit, painted and designed with perfection. And the tone? The sound? You can't beat it. Every style of music can be played on this guitar. What more do you want? It's all here.
jessie.morris owns this item
This is the 9th Strat in my collection, and I must say probably one of the best.
sstultz owns this item
When I first picked this strat up and played it, I felt an immediate connection. WOW! It has only grown better and better. I cannot imagine being without this one. Simple to use, great neck, tones, weight/balance, sustain. It feels alive in my hands. LOVE IT! Sienna Sunburst w/ maple. A beautiful classic!
EMcRobie owns this item
Picked up this strat last year, and it's been a perfect addition to my tool box! It plays like a dream - I wish all my guitars played this easily! It sounded great when I first played it, but I swapped in the Fender 57/62 PUPs and I'm glad I did. It's a pretty guitar, and the fit and finish are wonderful. Between it and my '52 AVRI tele, I have all the electric guitar I need!
I bought my first American Standard Strat in 1987...first or second year of Fender making them after CBS was out of the picture. I bought my second one in 2011 and it's thrilling to see that the quality of these instruments is still top notch. The quality of construction and finish is extremely high, and as soon as I got my hand around the neck it became clear this was simply "easier to play" for qualities I still can't put my finger on. I miss the hardtail option sometimes; however, the characteristic sound of the instrument has a lot to do with the tremolo bridge so those of us who don't use it just have to suck it up and lock them down. I've already done some serious customization of the pick-ups and switches and the strat remains a dream for such work. I don't think you can find a better quality electric guitar at this price. My standard workhorse go-to guitar will forever be the American Standard. When you've already found the best, why muck with it?
dbmcc owns this item
Love it and happy to have it. Looks nice and good tone. I reduced one point as it sometimes makes hum noises.
gomies owns this item
The Fender American Standard Stratocaster? Indeed it is a standard. It is the standard by which all others should be compared. If you are reading this, you most likely are no stranger to the look, feel and tone of the Fender Strat. You probably remember the excitement you felt when you first heard this amazing guitar. I know I do. The American Standard Strat is that guitar. It feels incredibly solid, feels very smooth, is stunning to look at, and most importantly, it has *that* sound.
In fact, it has buckets full of *that* sound, and then some.
Purchasing this instrument is a no-brainer. Playing it is like switching on musical autopilot.The sound and feel of this baby conspire to get you to tap your deepest wells of inspiration, and that is no exaggeration.
But don't take my word for it. Go to your local guitar shop and compare. I bet you'll fall in love, just like I did.
edwinthedutchman owns this item
As you'd expect, perfect in every way. When I picked this up I knew it was going to be mine. Holds its tuning incredibly well, all in all, it just feels right.
Miktrik owns this item
This model has a great neck and nice pickups. I hot-rodded mine with aftermarket pickups and it sounds great. It has a rosewood fretboard, which is nice, but not quite as good to my taste as the maple. Overall, the guitar is excellent, but not quite as good as the American Deluxe strat or the 1957 vintage hot-rodded strat that comes with a Dimarzio bridge pickup.
slickstring owns this item
It feels good, It sounds good and it looks good.
Every Amp-Strat-Combination has it's own Soul.
It's fun to find out - it will worth it!
shruschka owns this item
There isn't a lot to be said about this guitar. The guitar speaks for itself. Since I was a child, I dreamed of owning a Strat. Now 26 years old, I finally could afford to purchase one. As a bit of a purist, I didn't want to settle for anything less than an American-Made Fender Stratocaster. I'm glad I had high standards. This guitar is everything I dreamed of. The fit, finish, build quality, and playability are off the charts. This is my first electric guitar but I am confident in saying that anyone, amateur or pro, would be pleased with this guitar. The only complaint I have is that it never goes out of tune.
wesromaine owns this item
The versatility of this guitar is amazing! The clean tones just shimmer and it can still deliver a distortion fueled bombast. The Olympic white finish is fantastic, the neck is perfect, and the action is smoother than any other guitar I have played. Well done Fender!
Soul Crusher owns this item
I have the 2012 version of this model with a maple neck. The neck is extremely smooth creating a fret board with an easy action that makes this guitar very playable. I also liked the actual price I paid for it at Guitar Center. It's a lot of guitar and case for the money.
A 4 out of 5 on the design rating,only because of the tremolo bar's thread stripped or bottomed out from the bridge threading very easily.Leaving the tremolo bar to swing loose and occasionally buzz, supposedly a common occurrence. I own the 2012 American standard and consider this the only negative to a guitar that makes my heart sing and my very soul stir with excitement every time I pick it up to play and hear "THAT" sound that I always wanted! I own a few classic guitars, but my Strat will always be my #1.Thank you Fender!
Gary2112 owns this item
What I like about the American Standard Stratocaster is a bit of everything that made this historic guitar what it is today, been in the past, and will always be in the future. The tone, action, smooth neck, exceptional body contours and comfortability of playing. The paint job is awesome and beautiful. I am happy with my 2011 American Standard Stratocaster. The "Strat" is the guitar all my guitar heroes played when I was growing up and the only one I want to own because of it.
eastsunroom owns this item
The best American Standard ever built.
Great sound, beautiful finished.
Thanks a lot...
olecram68 owns this item
I owned a couple of other Strats (2001 Am Standard and a '92 Floyd Rose Classic) so wasn't really looking to buy when in December 2011 a friend asked me to help him buy a guitar as a present for his son for graduation. We met at the store and I pointed him to this model with a maple neck simply based on rep, features and his price range. He played it for a few minutes but being a keyboard player felt he couldn't judge it and asked me to try it out. I was amazed at the difference between that guitar and the other Stratocasters of a few year's earlier vintage - the guys at the store told me that Fender was putting renewed emphasis on the quality of the Am Standard particularly with the necks and it showed...! The fret dressing was spot on and the fret ends were polished giving the neck a silky "broken in" feel. At that point I told my friend that if he wasn't buying it and taking it home, I was (and did)!
This guitar quickly became my workhorse guitar for gigging until my Strat Select purchase (but that's another review) and is still my mainstay for rehearsals and always goes along to the gig as a backup guitar. Over 2012, I played a few other new models and found that they all exhibited the same attention to the neck giving them superior playability for the price. The tone is vintage Fender with the glistening shimmer (especially through a Fender amp) but snarly rock tones if you want 'em. If you're looking for that guitar to move you into the next level of playing at a value, you can't beat it.
greyseal owns this item
This is one of my lower end Strats. This is the one I play for the everyday gig. Reliable is the word I would use. It is consistant from gig to gig. It's not necessarily the best feeling guitar I own but that does not mean it does not feel great, see my above remark.
I have owned several strats over the years and even though I think the 60's, 70's strats feel better this is a great tool for the working guitar player.
I think in general the necks should be a little more dressed out of the box but after a couple of years of break in it should not be a problem I have installed the LSR rollar nut and locking tuners because I can't do without them due to my Jeff Beck Strat.
General it can stand up to the rigors of a giging musican.
rafone owns this item
I love the feel of this guitar. It has great action and is a very solid instrument. I'm not one for road worn so I appreciate the excellent finish on this guitar. Wouldn't buy anything else.
nevertooold owns this item
The neck on this Strat is so smooth that I barely have to touch the strings.
This easy playability takes the stress off of my hand. This allows me to play
longer. This is my third Strat and I have loved all three, but this is the best Strat ever.
Larry Murphy owns this item
This guitar has seen some abuse over the years and it just keeps on keeping on, stays in tune. It is my main guitar for a jam that I have been hosting for the past 11 years. Many players play it and love the action and tone and many players have dropped it, knocked it over, drinks spilled on it, but it still plays beautifully. I have Telecasters also which I love also but they are newer and I play them out when I don't have to share. but they are built just as tough and I am sure thy could take the abuse also. The Strat also gets all the sounds you need from crystal clear to down and dirty (depending on amp settings pedals etc...).
I will never give up my Fender guitars!!
Russstgeorge owns this item
I have been using my American Standard Stratocaster for almost a year, and I am most impressed by how solid the construction of the instrument is, as well as the components. I upgraded from a 90's Squier (also a very good guitar) but as most people know the American Standard is a clear step above. The tone of the instrument is quite bright, and I have considered changing the capacitor to a 0.47, but ultimately resisted (I do not want to void my warranty just yet). The Olympic White finish and maple neck are such a fantastic combination. The neck is great - the satin finish is really a joy to play. Overall, I love my American Standard to bits, but I plan to bequeath it to my daughter when she is big enough to hold it. She is only 18 months old, but she gets really excited whenever I play it around her (not for the quality of my playing incidentally). Then I can buy myself a Telecaster!
davidaxelbank owns this item
What's there to say about the American Standard Strat that hasn't already been said? Incredibly comfortable body that's contoured for hours of playing, a C-shaped neck that's satin on the back but gloss on the front so your hands can glide smoothly up and down the fretboard. New for 2012 are the Fender Custom Shop Fat 50s pickups that deliver on their name's promises. They're bright but not harsh and are extremely responsive to the subtleties of however hard your pick/finger attack may be. The setup, fit and finish right out of the box lived up to the reputation set by the living legacy of USA made Strats!
On a completely superficial note, the aged plastic pickup covers and control knobs just look great.
|Model Name:||American Standard Stratocaster®, Rosewood Fingerboard, Black|
|Neck Finish:||Satin Urethane Finish on Back of Neck with Gloss Urethane Headstock Face|
|Neck Shape:||Modern "C"|
|Scale Length:||25.5" (648 mm)|
|Fingerboard Radius:||9.5" (241 mm)|
|Number of Frets:||22|
|Fret Size:||Medium Jumbo|
|String Nut:||Synthetic Bone|
|Nut Width:||1.685" (42.8 mm)|
|Truss Rod Nut:||1/8" American Series|
|Bridge Pickup:||Custom Shop Fat '50s Single-Coil Strat|
|Middle Pickup:||Custom Shop Fat '50s Single-Coil Strat|
|Neck Pickup:||Custom Shop Fat '50s Single-Coil Strat|
|Controls:||Master Volume, Tone 1. (Neck Pickup), Tone 2. No-Load Tone Control (Middle and Bridge Pickups)|
|Pickup Switching:||5-Position Blade: Position 1. Bridge Pickup, Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup, Position 3. Middle Pickup, Position 4. Middle and Neck Pickup, Position 5. Neck Pickup|
|Bridge:||2-Point Synchronized Tremolo with Bent Steel Saddles|
|Tuning Machines:||Fender Standard Cast/Sealed Staggered|
|Control Knobs:||Aged White Plastic|
|Strings:||Fender® USA Bullets® 3250L, NPS, (.009-.042 Gauges)|
|Unique Features:||Bent Steel Saddles with Elongated String Slots, Copper Infused High Mass 100% Metal Bridge Block, Thinner Undercoat Finish for Improved Body Resonance, Tinted Neck, Aged Plastic Parts.|
|Included Accessories:||Hardshell Case, Cable, Strap, Polishing Cloth|
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