Versatile by Design: The Acoustasonic Player Telecaster — Episode Two
See how the Acoustasonic® Player Telecaster® is made at a brand-new factory in Ensenada, Mexico, exclusively dedicated to creating this revolutionary instrument.
By Mike Duffy
The American Acoustasonic Series took the world by storm when it was first released in Telecaster form two years ago, soon to be joined by Stratocaster and Jazzmaster versions.
Built at Fender’s Corona, Calif., they revolutionized the way people think about the relationship between the acoustic and electric guitar. Now, Fender has another addition to the lineup in the Acoustasonic Player Telecaster, a streamlined version of the original ready to bring this amazing design to even more players.
In order to keep pace with the demand for the Acoustasonic Player Telecaster, however, Fender built a brand-new facility in Ensenada, Mexico, that is exclusively dedicated to producing this revolutionary model.
“I think the story of this guitar is about the lessons learned and every evolution of the Acoustasonic since the start,” said Ed Magee, Executive Vice President of Operations. “When you build acoustic guitars, temperature and humidity are absolutely critical, much more so than with a solid body guitar.
“We captured all of our build processes in Corona and applied that to the design of the actual factory where we’ll build this guitar in Ensenada.”
Since Ensenada is located on the West Coast of Baja California, climate control was a top priority throughout the build.
Experts were brought in to consider every aspect of the process to ensure it all flows around the Acoustasonic Player Telecaster. Located alongside the existing Fender factory that had operated out of Ensenada since 1987, the new state-of-the-art facility boasts insulated walls and roof, and room to allow wood to acclimate to the indoor temperatures.
And perhaps the most important aspect of the new Ensenada factory is the people that occupy it. As Marko Ibarra, Director of NPI and Program Management, estimates, each Acoustasonic Player Telecaster is handled by 30 or 40 people before it becomes a finished product, offering a little bit of their passion as it passes through their hands.
“Thinking about how every person who touches it leaves a little bit of their energy here, surely it must be alive,” said Ibarra. “The instruments are alive and ready to make new stories, to find a new home, to find a musician waiting for them to make a lot of good music.”
Just as the Acoustasonic Series is the first of its kind, the fully-focused Acoustasonic Player Telecaster factory is a trailblazer in the industry, a continuation of Fender’s rich history of innovation.
“The thing that makes me the most proud of the Acoustasonic plant — and not only the Acoustasonic plant, but the whole Fender campus in Mexico — is the human capacity, the human talent,” said Angel Espinoza, Vice President of Manufacturing Operation. “Our staff, all of our team members, are committed. They have an enormous sense of pride. We’re an organization that’s completely focused on quality, on doing things right. It makes us proud to see our products in the hands of musicians and for them to feel that they’re playing the best product possible on the market.”
To go inside the new Ensenada factory and see the Acoustasonic Player Telecaster in action, watch Fender’s latest edition of their Versatile by Design video series, featuring Pablo Sotelo of L.A.-based rock band Inner Wave.
Watch the full feature in the video above, and click here to shop the Acoustasonic Player Telecaster.