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Squier Stratocaster Buying Guide: Breaking Down Key Single-Coil Models

In the mood for a beginner Strat? Check out these guitars from Squier.

Since its introduction in 1954, the Stratocaster has revolutionized the face of music as we know it, and that goes across all genres—rock, pop, blues, jazz, punk and heavy metal, to name just a few.

Artists like Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Pete Townshend, Robbie Robertson, Bonnie Raitt, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Gary Clark Jr., the Edge, and John Frusciante make up just a short list of those who have championed the stalwart Strat over the years.

And while Fender offers a wide range of Stratocaster models perfect for a variety of playing levels and styles, Squier expands the Strat range with even more affordable and singularly dynamic alternatives to this classic design.

Looking for a beginner guitar? Our interactive gear guide,, matches you with the perfect model by learning about your sound & style. You’ll be well on your way to finding the right guitar for you. Here is a quick rundown of our favorite Squier guitars for beginners:

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Below, an overview of several Squier Stratocaster models that feature the classic three single-coil pickup configuration and their unique features:



The newly-redesigned Bullet Strat is ideal for first-timer players looking for an easy-to-play, affordable electric guitar. Now, the Bullet Strat features a 25.5” scale, so those with smaller hands might want to try the short-scale Stratocaster, with its 24” scale, or the Mini Strat, which boasts a 22/75" scale. Additionally, the Strat SS means you get a strap, cable, picks and a Fender Frontman 10G amplifier—everything you need to start playing.

  • Vintage-Style Hardtail Bridge
  • “C”-Shaped Neck Profile
  • 3 Single-Coil Pickups
  • 22.75”, 24” or 25.5” Scale



The Affinity Series Stratocaster combines the classic features that made the Stratocaster a rock and roll favorite: sonic flexibility, authentic Fender sound, vintage style and eye-catching finishes.

  • Available in Slick Silver, Competition Orange, Surf Green, Race Red, Brown Sunburst, 2-Color Sunburst, Black
  • Vintage-Style Tremolo
  • “C”-Shaped Neck Profile
  • 3 Single-Coil Pickups




The Classic Vibe Stratocaster '50s provides unmistakable '50s-era Fender vibe and tone. A custom set of Alnico III pickups cranks out authentic tone—clear and bright, with terrific sustain, even in crunch mode. Meanwhile, the Classic Vibe Stratocaster '60s evokes that musically adventurous decade, adding a few modern features. The thick tone comes from the alnico V single-coil pickups—quick attack with a bit more midrange force. Custom staggered polepieces provide improved string-to-string balance in both models.

  • Vintage-Tint Gloss Neck Finish
  • Contemporary “C”-Shaped Neck
  • Vintage-Style Tremolo
  • Alnico III Single-Coil Pickups (‘50s) and Alnico V Single-Coil Pickups (‘60s)



The Vintage Modified '70s Stratocaster delivers the distinctive look of 1970s workhorse Fender guitar along with modern features that enhance playability and sound. Vintage-accurate appointments create an authentic look and familiar feel while the updated pickups and electronics help you unlock your personal tone.

  • Vintage-Style Synchronized Tremolo Bridge
  • Vintage-Tint Gloss Neck Finish
  • ‘70s-Style Large Headstock



The Squier Standard Stratocaster is a great playing guitar with a traditional vibe and modern feel. This version also touts an elegantly figured flame maple top to set it apart from the pack. Player-friendly features like a 22-fret fingerboard and a slimmer neck make for easier playing and choke-free bends. Alnico single-coil pickups provide plenty of punch while three elegant flame top colors grant a touch of elegance to this stunning instrument.

  • “C”-Shaped Neck Profile
  • Flame Maple Top
  • Large Headstock
  • Vintage-Style Tremolo Bridge

In addition to Squier's single-coil Stratocaster models, there are several other Squier Strats that feature humbucking pickups, like the Black and Chrome Standard Strat HSS, the Affinity Series HSS and Vintage Modified Stratocaster HSS. And don't think Squier left out the lefties, as there are left-handed Standard, Affinity Series and Classic Vibe Stratocaster models available, as well.