Does a 50s Strat limit what you can play?

Discussion in 'Stratocaster Discussion Forum' started by dscottyg, Sep 17, 2021.

  1. Davey76

    Davey76 Strat-Talk Member

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    I have said 50’s original Strat in Inca silver. I have to admit at first I struggled with it. It had a fatter neck than I’d ever previously owned and the pups were lower output than other guitars I had and I found getting the grit was harder to come by as opposed to hotter outputted guitars BUT over time, I started to improve my understanding of that guitar and I started hearing how much body a fatter neck gives the sound. I realised to get it to scream, you push your amp a bit more and then the guitar and once I had figured those idiosyncrasies out, that Strat is a cherished part of the family. It doesn’t want for anything if you know how to make it angry.
    That being said, the 60’s version of the same series has hotter and dare I say brighter pups than it’s 50’s counterpart so you’re going to arrive a little quicker to the eras namesake of sound but that’s about it. It won’t govern what you can play or how you play it, it’s just a tweak thing. Personally I love the look of the 50’s Strats, I don’t like at all the transition logo but I love the colours in the 60’s range. It really just depends on what you’re going for aesthetically because both will get you where you want to go just using a different road. The 60’s doesn’t have as fat a neck, the 50’s has I think a 57 soft V profile with an .86’-.96’ inch neck 1st-12th fret which to me is a comfortable handful, not sure what the 60’s are. Hopefully that helps you some. Ask me anything that you want to know about the 50’s OG, I’ll be happy to help.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2021
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  2. Slartybartfast

    Slartybartfast Strat-Talker

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    Three things; one, you'd be hard pressed to tell the difference between these two guitars in a blind test. They are almost the same guitar. Secondly, any good guitar can, should, and has been used for every kind of music. And thirdly, thank god they didn't go with the authentic 7 1/4" radius and tiny frets. They made these things to be played obviously, not collected.
     
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  3. Davey76

    Davey76 Strat-Talk Member

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    Simmer buddy, not everyone has the experience to know how to get the guitar they want. Everyone is at different levels man.
     
  4. Dain Bramage

    Dain Bramage Strat-Talker

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    I had to double check, but I didn't remember that Fender didn't start the 5-way switch with reverse-wound, reverse polarity middle pickups until 1977. That's later than I remembered. It is the most difference Fender has made in the Strat since the '50's, and it simply allows for a "hum-cancelling" position (#2 position up from the bridge or #4 down from the neck, just to cover) that has a lot of artists usage. It's different, and it tames a bit the noise amplified by dirt pedals on the way in. Other than that, it is what do you hear and want? Some older artists would find that spot in between positions on the old 3-way switch that, while it wasn't designed for it (no detente), it was popular.
     
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  5. Matt Evcar

    Matt Evcar Strat-Talk Member

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    I've not tried a 50s but do own a 60s. When I read up, the difference I noted was on feel as opposed to sound or what genre each could play.

    I opted for the 60s as the neck dimensions seemed similar to my Am Pro 2 Tele which I like. Also more on a shallow note preferred the 60s colours.

    If it were a Tele though it would be the 50s Blonde
     
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  6. manilaboy1vic

    manilaboy1vic New Member!

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    I got a AO 50s.. I love the neck.. makes my AP Tele seem like a toothpick
     
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  7. rikbigcat

    rikbigcat Strat-Talker

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    As others have said, and many YouTube videos attest, most anything can be played on any guitar.

    We can't deny, however, that "style" and "pizzazz" in public guitar performance do exist.

    One of my favorite recent videos is of Ola Englund, the metal-head whose eternal question is "Will it chug?" making an Acoustasonic Jazzmaster loaned by Fender chug metal riffs but summarizing "Did it chug? Yes. Is it something I would recommend to my metal brethren? For the looks, not so much."

    You're pretty safe with a Strat in any situation, though.

     
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  8. tptmnc

    tptmnc Strat-Talk Member

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    Yes, you're wrong about that. Both are very versatile instruments and will do equally well playing whatever music you wish to play.
     
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  9. greezy strings

    greezy strings Strat-O-Master

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    My MIM 50's Classic series sounded so good clean but I could never get it to bond with my old rat and muff fuzz... just sound off to my ears..
     
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  10. Dik Ellis

    Dik Ellis Strat-Talk Member

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    A guitar is just a vehicle for whatever music you want to make.
     
  11. MGibson

    MGibson New Member!

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    The biggest difference I think would be the switch: older style might have a three way switch.
     
  12. Doc538

    Doc538 Strat-Talker Silver Member

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    I'm sorry to say that the re issue 50's strat can only play "Kingston Trio music" although an original 50's can also play Buddy Holly and la Bamba
     
  13. Doc538

    Doc538 Strat-Talker Silver Member

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    Heck they could have played 2x4's with strings and pick ups nailed on them
     
  14. Doc538

    Doc538 Strat-Talker Silver Member

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    IMHO, there is only one solution for you because you are directed by your most honorable superstar guitar heroes. You must buy both a 50s and a mid 60s in order for you to be super happy, and that is what we all aim for. Some of us have ADD, on the spectrum or other mental things going on, and something this basic can put us into a whirlwind of doubt and confusion. If you can only afford one, then buy the 50 now and the 60 later.

    In all seriousness, your question was basically a very good one because there is a difference in the necks and pap windings between the two, there is even differences in the builds of 50s strats, fewer machines more hand wiring, coil wrapping. It may be minor but very noticeable to some ears.

    Enjoy the hell out of them.
     
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  15. knh555

    knh555 Most Honored Senior Member

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    Mark Knopfler played Brothers in Arms on a Les Paul.


    Here's my take on an American Vintage '59 Strat (same pickups as the AO50s). It doesn't sound exactly the same, but so what. It works for me.


    The difference between a Les Paul and a Strat is bigger than the difference between 50s and 60s style Strats, yet I assert the Strat works just fine for this song.

    Make your own music and don't overthink it.
     
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  16. Jimbo99

    Jimbo99 Strat-Talker

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    Make your cover version with the Strat of your choosing. Any guitar is close, a bigger difference is the amp & pedals. The guitar player has always been the biggest limitation for me. Unless you can dial in the studio/venue, that's even more magic that happens.
     
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  17. EtoE

    EtoE Strat-Talk Member

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    I have 5 Strats and I love them all equally!
     
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  18. Biddlin

    Biddlin Senior Stratmaster

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    Yeah, absolutely. You're so welcome.
     
  19. brians

    brians Senior Stratmaster

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    I'm changing my opinion.

    Not about this thread, but just in general.
     
  20. turfdoc

    turfdoc Strat-Talker

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    I write in modern English, can I still write like Shakespeare and Bronte, or do I need the older version?