Fender Stratocaster Guitar Forum



Warmoth.com Amplified Parts lacemusic.com seymourduncan.com


Go Back   Fender Stratocaster Guitar Forum > Main Stratocaster Guitar Discussion Forum > Stratocaster Discussion Forum
Forgot Username/Password? Join Us!

Notices

Stratocaster Discussion Forum The Strat-talk.com Fender Stratocaster Discussion Forum

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old November 6th, 2012, 11:15 AM   #1 (permalink)
Strat-Talk Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 10
Japan vs American?

Hey, so I'm looking into buying a new strat, and was wondering if anyone had any suggestions on how much better an American strat is supposed to be. Should I go American? Or I did find a nice '62 reissue MIJ for sale.

bry180 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 11:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
RomeoSierra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Portsmouth, UK
Posts: 256
You'll get many a different answer to your question. Some people will tell you MIA Strats have a magical sound and feel that you just can't get with "lesser" instruments.
On the other hand, plenty of folk swear by Japanese or Mexican and say they're just as good as their Yankee counterparts.

I personally have an MIA and it's great. But I wouldn't be adverse to any other nationality.

Just go play a few and see if you can tell the difference. Whatever feels and sounds best to you - that's the one.
RomeoSierra is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 11:36 AM   #3 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
gilmourstrat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Europe
Posts: 371
Quote:
Originally Posted by RomeoSierra View Post
You'll get many a different answer to your question. Some people will tell you MIA Strats have a magical sound and feel that you just can't get with "lesser" instruments.
On the other hand, plenty of folk swear by Japanese or Mexican and say they're just as good as their Yankee counterparts.

I personally have an MIA and it's great. But I wouldn't be adverse to any other nationality.

Just go play a few and see if you can tell the difference. Whatever feels and sounds best to you - that's the one.
+1. Great advice.

I have a Classic Series 50's Strat and it beats my former USA Strat in sound and feel. But each guitar is a case and you can find awesome MIM, MIJ ones but also lemons. Same with USA. Try before buying is always advised...
gilmourstrat is offline   Reply With Quote

Sponsored Links   #
Sponsored posting
 

Old November 6th, 2012, 12:04 PM   #4 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
chrisguitarguy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Greater Cincinnati
Posts: 751
Hello neighbor, I am also in KY. The advice that was already given is good advice. Go play some guitars, and the one that you connect with is the right one for you. Where are you in KY, maybe I can direct you to some places that can help hook ya up.
__________________
My Studio
http://www.stonehandstudio.net/home.html
chrisguitarguy is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 12:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
Strat-Talk Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 10
I love in the NKY/Cincinnati area, the Japanese reissue I found was on Craigslist, maybe I will go check it out. I honestly just feel like I'm cheating by buying non-American.
bry180 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 01:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
Senior Stratmaster
 
VentilatorBlues's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Milwaukee via Utica, NY
Age: 29
Posts: 2,701
Quote:
Originally Posted by bry180 View Post
I honestly just feel like I'm cheating by buying non-American.
Well, I'd suggest trying the MIJ Strat first and then deciding. FWIW I have two MIJ Fenders; an '89 62RI Strat and an '87 62RI Jazz Bass. Both are phenomenal instruments. The finishing on the necks is just perfect. I would definitely put them against anything American, sub-Custom Shop, in terms of neck feel, fret finishing, etc.
__________________
“Sometimes it's a little better to travel than to arrive” - Robert Pirsig
VentilatorBlues is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 02:17 PM   #7 (permalink)
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: deshler ohio
Age: 21
Posts: 1,306
My 1983 squier jv is superior to any American strat in every single way except electronics
cagethelephant is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 03:02 PM   #8 (permalink)
Most Honored Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: in New Orleans' past
Posts: 6,356
Quote:
Originally Posted by bry180 View Post
I love in the NKY/Cincinnati area, the Japanese reissue I found was on Craigslist, maybe I will go check it out. I honestly just feel like I'm cheating by buying non-American.
.
The nut may be pretty narrow on that MIJ.

The #1 problem for MIJs in the USA is the supply of additional ones (other than some stupid fringe models) is basically cut off. Most of the guys who sing the praises of MIJs are talking about guitars made 10, 20 and more years ago. You might find a single guitar you fall in love with, but if it got stolen you might have to move heaven and earth to find another.

The USA models are much more readily available and I've seen people end up buying One from a pile of 7 of them, choosing the most soulful one. But they can be readily found, readily replaced and some guys buy and sell, buy and sell and they're almost a commodity.

I think you need to refocus on FEATURES though. Decide which bridge design, which neck thickness and shape, what kinds of tuners, fretsizes and finishes you can accept and determine which model to shop for based more on that. That tends to wipe out the MIJs (at least in North America) and actually, pushes the MIAs aside also. You may find yourself liking and buying a MIM instead. Man are there ever a lot of quantity, of different styles and colors of MIMs and these are never to be scoffed at.

I like the idea of buying USA, all things being equal I always do. But, I see the plant in Ensenada, which Fender genuinely owns and controls 100%, and so this often is where the line gets drawn. The "overseas" models, whether made for "Fender Japan", or these crummy new "Modern Players" from China, these are all "contract" guitars and they're not "Made by Fender" they're at best "Made for Fender" by a company that will be making another brand of guitar next month.
Boris Bubbanov is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 04:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
vgp001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Location: Location
Posts: 926
Focusing on features is good.

But I wouldn't rule out checking out the MIJ. Chances are high that (if unadulterated) you're gonna get a good guitar.

Plus if it is truly vintage in styling a MIM Classic 60's is not far off. That is if you want to save money. If you're willing to spend more to buy American, then finding a good used AVRI '62 is still a possibility.

The blessing and curse side of things when it comes to Fender guitars - even within Stratocasters - is that there are a lot of "features" to be found.

Sometimes just going out and picking up a good model and just playing isn't a bad thing.

BTW - I'm in the Cincinnati area and there's always something Stratocaster decent posted on CL....
__________________
It's just as important knowing when to play AND when not to play.

If you can't make a Squier sing, you'll make a Fender fart.
vgp001 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 05:04 PM   #10 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
chrisguitarguy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Greater Cincinnati
Posts: 751
Quote:
Originally Posted by bry180 View Post
I love in the NKY/Cincinnati area, the Japanese reissue I found was on Craigslist, maybe I will go check it out. I honestly just feel like I'm cheating by buying non-American.
Just sent you a PM
__________________
My Studio
http://www.stonehandstudio.net/home.html
chrisguitarguy is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 05:27 PM   #11 (permalink)
Strat-Talk Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 10
Awesome, thanks for all the advice, it really helped. I'm gonna spend a bunch of time in guitar center feeling out which specs I like the best! I appreciate it
bry180 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 06:29 PM   #12 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
RomeoSierra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Portsmouth, UK
Posts: 256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boris Bubbanov
.
I like the idea of buying USA, all things being equal I always do. But, I see the plant in Ensenada, which Fender genuinely owns and controls 100%, and so this often is where the line gets drawn. The "overseas" models, whether made for "Fender Japan", or these crummy new "Modern Players" from China, these are all "contract" guitars and they're not "Made by Fender" they're at best "Made for Fender" by a company that will be making another brand of guitar next month.
That is a very interesting point, never really thought of it like that. So yeah basically it's simple - if you get an American or Mexican one, you can't go wrong. You'll get an actual proper Fender. My eyes have been opened! :-)
RomeoSierra is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 07:54 PM   #13 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
Ash-Man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: North Carolina U.S.A.
Posts: 858
to tell the truth, the difference is so minimal between MIJ, MIM, and MIA I can't justify spending the extra $ on the MIA's.. I mean once I put the pickups I like in a MIM (I buy the nicer MIMs) and give them a good setup they trump some the priciest MIA Fenders and that is not my personal bias speaking.. You just have to play a lot if MIMs to find a great one, most MIJs are right on the money though, so if you're satisfied with a MIJ or MIM go for it and use the money you saved to buy an amp, pay the bills, have a few cold beers... you get the point
Ash-Man is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 08:08 PM   #14 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
vgp001's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Location: Location
Posts: 926
I consider myself a "middle-of-the-roader" when it comes to Strats.

I tend to look at stuff in the range of MIJ Fender/Squier E-series, MIM Classic, MIJ Classic, and used American Standards.

LOTS of good stuff to be had there.
__________________
It's just as important knowing when to play AND when not to play.

If you can't make a Squier sing, you'll make a Fender fart.
vgp001 is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 08:10 PM   #15 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
crumple's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Virginia
Age: 35
Posts: 711
A MIJ '62 reissue could be really sweet, especially if the price is right...

I would look for MIMs, MIJs, or MIAs. I can also recommend the Squier Classic Vibe line.

Any of these are plenty capable of satisfying the beginner, intermediate, or pro player with a good set up.

Play 'em, find one that speaks to you.
crumple is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 08:15 PM   #16 (permalink)
Senior Stratmaster
 
Rockape's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: UK
Age: 54
Posts: 2,877
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boris Bubbanov
.
The nut may be pretty narrow on that MIJ.

The #1 problem for MIJs in the USA is the supply of additional ones (other than some stupid fringe models) is basically cut off. Most of the guys who sing the praises of MIJs are talking about guitars made 10, 20 and more years ago. You might find a single guitar you fall in love with, but if it got stolen you might have to move heaven and earth to find another.

The USA models are much more readily available and I've seen people end up buying One from a pile of 7 of them, choosing the most soulful one. But they can be readily found, readily replaced and some guys buy and sell, buy and sell and they're almost a commodity.

I think you need to refocus on FEATURES though. Decide which bridge design, which neck thickness and shape, what kinds of tuners, fretsizes and finishes you can accept and determine which model to shop for based more on that. That tends to wipe out the MIJs (at least in North America) and actually, pushes the MIAs aside also. You may find yourself liking and buying a MIM instead. Man are there ever a lot of quantity, of different styles and colors of MIMs and these are never to be scoffed at.

I like the idea of buying USA, all things being equal I always do. But, I see the plant in Ensenada, which Fender genuinely owns and controls 100%, and so this often is where the line gets drawn. The "overseas" models, whether made for "Fender Japan", or these crummy new "Modern Players" from China, these are all "contract" guitars and they're not "Made by Fender" they're at best "Made for Fender" by a company that will be making another brand of guitar next month.
MIJ nut width is 42mm. ...is that narrow? (feels right to me!).

From my side of the pond ("overseas" UK. ........and in my own personal opinion), if Fender wants their brand name on the headstock, then that guitar is a Fender product; I don't care who built it, or which country it was built in....and that includes Squier by Fender.....to me (and I'm sure, a few others) its a Fender.

I have everything from those "crummy" Chinese models, MIJ, MIK, MIM through to CS USA, and each one was chosen by me because it was a very good instrument.

Everyone around the globe has their own take on it.......this is mine.

My preference would be the Fender Japan / USA hybrids (JV, EXTRAD etc.....Japanese necks and bodies with American hardware and electronics, built in Japan).
Rockape is online now   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 09:29 PM   #17 (permalink)
Strat-Talk Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Australia
Posts: 11
Been a long-time forum lurker, and just gonna put in my 2 cents worth.

The main problem for me (personally) regarding MIJ guitars is the neck radius and fret size. I have an '87 MIJ Squier which sounds superb stock, but the small neck radius and vintage sized skinny frets make bending quite difficult for me, especially when my palms get a bit sweaty.

On the other hand, I have a few late 80s MIA Standards which are perfect for my (sweaty) hands. They have 9.5" radius with medium jumbo frets...this makes bending a breeze.

Ultimately, like what everyone else has said, you gotta try it out for yourself. All the brand names, and the MIJ/MIM/MIA debate goes down the drain when you actually find a guitar that you are comfy with in regards to the tone/sound, feel, looks after having played them in various situations (at home, live, sweaty hands or not haha)...

Just my 2 cents
RogerFed is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 6th, 2012, 10:48 PM   #18 (permalink)
Strat-Talker
 
dearlpitts's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: CA
Age: 55
Posts: 467
mij finishing seems to be the best
__________________
my band- www.reverbnation.com/noturningback new band www.timefurnace.com
dearlpitts is offline   Reply With Quote

Old November 7th, 2012, 02:41 AM   #19 (permalink)
Senior Stratmaster
 
Rockape's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: UK
Age: 54
Posts: 2,877
Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerFed
Been a long-time forum lurker, and just gonna put in my 2 cents worth.

The main problem for me (personally) regarding MIJ guitars is the neck radius and fret size. I have an '87 MIJ Squier which sounds superb stock, but the small neck radius and vintage sized skinny frets make bending quite difficult for me, especially when my palms get a bit sweaty.

On the other hand, I have a few late 80s MIA Standards which are perfect for my (sweaty) hands. They have 9.5" radius with medium jumbo frets...this makes bending a breeze.

Ultimately, like what everyone else has said, you gotta try it out for yourself. All the brand names, and the MIJ/MIM/MIA debate goes down the drain when you actually find a guitar that you are comfy with in regards to the tone/sound, feel, looks after having played them in various situations (at home, live, sweaty hands or not haha)...

Just my 2 cents
Yes, when Fender Japan built their first guitars, they (under Fender USA directives) built them very close to pre-CBS specs, as vintage replicas, and that meant having a vintage radius fingerboard (7.25") and thin fret wire. They have, for the most part, stayed with this theme.

I say under Fender directives because prior to Fender's involvement in early 1982, the same (very skilled) workers were building (Greco) vintage Strat replicas with much flatter fingerboard radiuses.....some found their way onto a few early Fender JV Strats.

These lawsuit era Grecos are surprisingly inexpensive (at the moment), and may be a good compromise for those who like vintage style Japanese Strats, but don't get on with the traditional fingerboard radius.

Here is a Greco SE600 from 1980 (not the vintage accuracy of the Fender JV models, but based on the vintage theme):

Rockape is online now   Reply With Quote

Old November 7th, 2012, 04:41 AM   #20 (permalink)
Strat-O-Master
 
chrisrae's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Silverlake, CA
Age: 21
Posts: 867
I think it depends mijs and Mias are like jack in the box and McDonalds. You have to try both to see which one is better or which one you like
chrisrae is offline   Reply With Quote

Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Japan: What's going on there now? sevycat Sidewinders Bar & Grille 6 March 24th, 2011 06:53 PM
Japan Jfernan Sidewinders Bar & Grille 5 March 11th, 2011 02:57 PM
Greetings from Japan mickey Introductions 19 September 18th, 2010 04:51 PM
to those in Japan boof Sidewinders Bar & Grille 10 May 2nd, 2010 11:13 AM

Untitled Document

Untitled Document

» Recent Strat-Talk Discussion
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.2



 


Design by: vBulletin Skins Zone
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.0 RC 2


The words Fender®, Telecaster®, Stratocaster® and the associated headstock designs are registered trademarks of the Fender Musical Instruments Corporation.
Strat-Talk.com is an independent, member supported forum and is not affiliated with Fender Musical Instruments Corporation.
© 2007 All rights reserved.

Strat-Talk.com is not responsible for the content posted by private individuals on this website. The views expressed herein are solely the opinions of the individuals that produced them and not necessarily the views of the owner of this website.