If you were blindfolded.

NobodyReally

Strat-Talker
Oct 22, 2022
401
Sikeston MO
Idk if i could really answer that. As stated above, yes I could probably hear a difference, but I'm quite sure I wouldn't be able to tell you which is which. Kinda like the gibson vs epiphone 59 les paul comparison. They're slightly different, but neither is individually distinguishable.
 

dspellman

Senior Stratmaster
Mar 24, 2013
1,400
Los Angeles
That’s interesting , I’ve seen quite a few vids where so called experts are stumped.

The '59 has two identical pickups in bridge and neck positions, and I'd expect that players used to having hotter bridge pickups in more modern guitars would notice that right away. The '59 was a pretty decent example and the setup wasn't bad, but the guitar that had been PLEK'd (and we actually raised the action slightly to get it within the range of the others) was nearly always the favorite.
 

Butcher of Strats

Senior Stratmaster
Feb 28, 2022
3,869
Maine
That’s interesting , I’ve seen quite a few vids where so called experts are stumped.
I think a problem with these comparisons is the confusing of two very different ideas.

One idea is to determine if the basic Strat built in Mexico is fundamentally different from the same basic Strat built in the US.
The question overlooks the facts that for one thing every Strat is a little different, and for another thing, every SSS Strat is basically the same.
Meaning that if the same guitar is made in different factories, any differences are just as likely to be caused by the fact that you cannot make two totally identical Strats, and not caused by geography.

Then the other idea which is kinda nuts, is that IF the MIM is in any way different from the $500 more expensive but basically the same US made Strat, a blindfolded player MUST be able to tell where it was made, by feel and sound.

As opposed to be able to identify between Strat A and Strat B, after trying both a couple of times, then randomly handed one and asked which one it is.

So some of us choose to interpret an inability to feel or hear the country the Fender factory is in; as proof that the guitars are the same?
 

Jimbo99

Senior Stratmaster
Jun 5, 2021
3,452
Palm Coast, FL
We blindfolded a few players at a guitar show once, and handed them five guitars, ranging from a $300 LP (ish) to a real '59 burst, and asked them to rank them #1 - 5. Not surprisingly (in my view) the $200K burst ranked near the bottom of the five and the $300 version was right there in the top 2-3 every time. We bagged the headstocks to prevent folks from feeling them to game things, and even though there was a difference in the cutaway horns, no one thought to check those. There WAS a difference in the radius of the fretboards and in the size of the frets, but most were concentrating on the differences in sound.
That's pretty interesting that a $ 300 guitar sounded better than 1/2 the sample to choose from, consistently.
 

Wound_Up

You can call me Duane 😁
Jan 23, 2020
5,857
NW LA
I've been playing American Standards since 1994. My two every day players are my 97 AS and my 89 HM. I'd like to think I would know the AS tone over other Strats, but I'd have to try it. The sunburst o e is an 82 AS hardtail. I don't play that one. Put Gilmour EMG's in it then stored it for some reason. View attachment 608873

There is no "American Strat Tone". There is only Strat tone.
 

Wound_Up

You can call me Duane 😁
Jan 23, 2020
5,857
NW LA
I think the MIM ceramic pickups would sound darker furrier…but, I’m making an assumption with very limited experience….okay, I’ll stop digging now….my hole is filling up with BS. 😜
MIM gets alnico pickups. Been that way for a few years now.
 

racerx819

Strat-Talker
Silver Member
Jul 3, 2020
298
Paradise
The '59 has two identical pickups in bridge and neck positions, and I'd expect that players used to having hotter bridge pickups in more modern guitars would notice that right away. The '59 was a pretty decent example and the setup wasn't bad, but the guitar that had been PLEK'd (and we actually raised the action slightly to get it within the range of the others) was nearly always the favorite.
I think the it’s not a fair test bc if the PLEK. They all should have been plek’d. The playability no matter what tone is generated is going to elicit an emotional reaction/response and a plek’d guitar could easily do that when compared to a standard set up.

You didn’t have an apples to apples test.

When a guitar plays like butta and another doesn’t… you can tell them to ignore it, but how can they.

Had you had one non participating guitarist play them all and have everyone just listen…. And rank the tone… that would be more compelling.
 

BryMelvin

Senior Stratmaster
Silver Member
Feb 13, 2014
1,132
AZ
Could you tell the difference between an American standard Strat, or a fender players strat ?
Actually no . I am not familiar with the newer models. The newest one I have is around 2008.Plus the last time I was blinfolded Actually head in a bag was in SERE training and I swore then no one would do that to me and live.
 


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