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22 Frets vs 21 Frets?

Discussion in 'Squier Strat Forum' started by Blackmore Fan, Jan 23, 2010.

  1. Blackmore Fan

    Blackmore Fan Senior Stratmaster

    Jan 10, 2010
    The Midwest
    Is there any rhyme or reason to pay attention to regarding the number of frets? I've seen Squiers that have 21 (most of them), but have also seen a few that had 22 (more rarely). Are the 22 fret models any more desirable?

  2. SecondHandMutt

    SecondHandMutt Strat-Talk Member

    Jan 15, 2010
    If you play high on the neck, you want 22 frets.

    It isn't just Squier, it is FENDER as a whole.
    I never understood why Fender does such a stupid thing and makes some necks 21 and others 22. Since they are bolt-ons, they are interchangeable, so I usually try to find a 22 fret neck to replace a 21 whenever possible.

    Gibson does it right. 22 frets all the time ........ 24 on some models!
    Sarnodude and RolandDeschain like this.

  3. tonyw

    tonyw Senior Stratmaster

    Jul 29, 2009
    Melbourne Australia
    21 frets were on the the vintage necks, my strat has 21 my ASAT has 22 and my nrew Baritone has 24. 21 frets gives you ease of maintenance with a body end truss rod adjustment. 22 i sometimes find mysels using it but i also use my slide right up to the bridge. I am not a shredder and dont play heaps of solos so 21 will do but 22 is fine.

  4. ArlenBucy

    ArlenBucy Senior Stratmaster

    Nov 22, 2008
    Plant City, FL
    I very rarely make it up that far so it don't much matter to me.

  5. zag1

    zag1 Strat-O-Master

    Dec 14, 2009
    Washington DC
    I was gonna ask, but I see it is, to some. (Important that is!)
    skypeace likes this.

  6. peskypesky

    peskypesky -------

    Aug 16, 2009
    hmm...never had a 22-fret neck. maybe it's time i got one!

  7. Goodkat

    Goodkat The One Strat-Talk Supporter

    Jun 25, 2009
    Belgrade, Serbia
    I like the looks of a 21 fret neck and the functionality of a 22 fret neck.

  8. nadzab

    nadzab Senior Stratmaster Strat-Talk Supporter

    I tend to agree. 22 is nice to have, but I don't find that I miss the extra fret terribly on my vintage-style necks.

  9. amstratnut

    amstratnut Peace thru Music. Strat-Talk Supporter

    Dec 1, 2009
    My house.
    my MIM has 21 my MIA has 22. I can't tell the difference. When I get that far up on either guitar my fingers don't fit anymore.

    I have a Agile PRS copy with 24 and its even worse for playing up high. Very cramped.
    Yellowdawg likes this.

  10. Malikon

    Malikon Dark Cabaret

    Sep 2, 2009
    I don't tend to miss it, sometimes I do if I want to sweep an E7 up real high, but generally I don't need it, if I need a high E I just bend the note an extra half step.

  11. Stratty

    Stratty Senior Stratmaster

    Dec 13, 2009
    Prattville, Alabama
    I got a new neck on my strat with one more fret, now 22, and I didnt even notice at first!

  12. nadzab

    nadzab Senior Stratmaster Strat-Talk Supporter

    It's nice to have that high A on the B-string once in a while...

  13. scotzoid

    scotzoid Senior Stratmaster

    Oct 16, 2009
    Music City
    IDK where the cutoff was, but originally all Fenders had 21 frets. I know my 64 has 21, whereas my 88 has 22, & they had to add that little ledge to accomplish that without reconfiguring the whole design. As to why not 24, I recall that Leo said that the 24th fret position was the ideal place for the neck pup, harmonics & all that...he had no use for any guitar that sacrificed that prime real estate for notes that only make dogs howl ;)

    As a side note, most bass players wouldn't notice or care, but I always found it a little maddening that I couldn't hit E above middle C on my P bass without bending...:oops:
    QMTstrat likes this.

  14. Suthrn_BLU_Sman

    Suthrn_BLU_Sman Strat-O-Master

    Apr 1, 2009
    Northeast Louisiana
    I never noticed it when I first started out until I was trying to learn a solo and I realized that the solo required 22 frets, I really wish I could remember which song it was. It's one of those right-of-passage songs that we all probably learned. Maybe something by Pink Floyd or maybe Skynyrd.... I dont know but other than that one incident I never noticed it. It is one more thing for my friends with MIA strats to point out when bashing MIM though.

  15. Strato

    Strato Strat-Talker

    Nov 16, 2009
    I have both 21 and 22 Fret Fenders. Had the 21 for a couple decades first and was just fine. But after having 22's for lots of years now I always seem to go to the 22 fret playing leads and very commonly bend the 22 a full step. I would only buy a 21 today that is on a genuine vintage guitar.

    I noticed PRS has dropped their Custom 22 and only offer the Custom 24 today. I really wonder about this because the pickups look closer together on the 24. Getting them closer together would slightly diminishes the difference between the bridge and neck.

  16. sevycat

    sevycat Custom Shop Cat Strat-Talk Supporter

    Aug 8, 2008
    Newark, DE
    I remember debating, as a teen, which guitar Joe Perry was using on the song Train keep a rollin. We decided it had to be a 22 fret neck to reach that high note in the solo.

    My electric guitars are all 21 fret necks, except one. Which is not a Fender guitar. I would have to agree with others, I do not really need to travel that far anymore for my playing style.

  17. Squier?!?

    Squier?!? Strat-Talker

    Jun 29, 2009
    The Dena
    It was actually ace session man
    Dick Wagner who played that solo,
    uncredited in the liner notes though.
    It wasn't divulged until years later, but
    he played a lot on "Get Your Wings".
    He's on some other Aerosmith too.

    Wagner, Steve Hunter & the absolutely sick bassist Prakash John
    all played in Lou Reed's band on the live "Rock N' Roll Animal" LP &
    in Alice Cooper's "Welcome To My Nightmare" touring band as well.

    Imho, Wagner & Hunter are the most underrated guitar duo in Rock.
    Mainly because they were session cats & guns for hire types, i guess.

    Prakash John doesn't get mentioned in the lists of greats either but, if
    you check out all three of those guys' work on that Lou Reed record &
    Alice's "Welcome To My Nightmare" (live in '75) dvd, they're undeniable.

    I hope i didn't burst your Joe Perry bubble, sevycat.:oops:
    I'm a ridiculously HUGE fan of 70's Aerosmith myself.

    Knowing there were ghost players on some of their early stuff
    never bothered me or ruined my ability to enjoy them though.

    There's a long history of that stuff
    going on in Rock N' Roll anyway, so...

    And as for 21 or 22 frets... i don't get all the way up to the
    22nd fret that often, but if i needed to for a particular song,
    i'd just play my Standard Strat or Les Paul for that number.

  18. Batocaster

    Batocaster Strat-O-Master

    Nov 3, 2009
    It's one extra note. One.

    Don't get me wrong, 3 out of 4 of my "Strat" necks are 22-fret... but do you really want to learn to play something in a way that won't work on all similar guitars? Better make sure every single possible backup and/or borrowed guitar has 22 before investing in that memorization..

  19. Strato

    Strato Strat-Talker

    Nov 16, 2009
    Personally I can't imagine not using the 22nd on a guitar during solos just because I had another guitar with 21 frets. To expand that thought I have lots of solos that pretty much single coil and others that are targeted for humbuckers. When you don't play them on the right guitar they just don't have the magic.

    That's why so many of us have more than one guitar to begin with.

  20. Malikon

    Malikon Dark Cabaret

    Sep 2, 2009
    I know most Metallica solos I teach seem to need the 22nd fret, especially ones like the Ride the Lightening solo where you're in the B minor 19th Pentatonic position for awhile.

    That solo was so much easier on the Jackson V. :(