Fender launched the American Elite Stratocaster, a Professional series, which comes to take over from the American Standard. With modern features, this series partially parks some classic elements to offer guitars with improved efficiency and reliability. Find out the details with this review.
- Alder body
- Maple neck
- Modern compound neck shape from ‘C’ to ‘D’
- Compound Radius Maple Fingerboard (241 – 355.6mm)
- 22 medium jumbo frets
- 648mm (25’5 “) scale
- 8mm synthetic bone nut
- 3 New 4th Gen Noiseless Single Coil Pickups
- Master volume control (push-pull: switch S1)
- 2 tone controls
- 5-position selector
- Synchronized tremolo
- Chrome hardware
- Strings: 009-042
- Finish: 3-Tone Sunburst
Like its sister, the Telecaster Thinline, the Fender Elite Stratocaster looks flawless. The truth is that we are already very used to the look of the Stratocaster, and most guitarists have been able to see it in every price range imaginable, so this guitar may not impact us at first. But the truth is that it is very well finished and the shine of the varnish and the metallic components is luxurious.
It is a conservative model with the traditional image of the Stratocaster, and only two elements deviate slightly from the stamp that we all have in our memory: one is the trimmed heel of the union of the body and the neck (which is justified with its function of making the guitar more comfortable) and the other is the decoration of the pickups with the fender logo (which is redundant to us) and the model name.
Many users are not convinced by the presence of such an inscription. Of course, it would be a ridiculous reason not to consider this guitar, it is simply an aesthetic note that was surely intended to underline the fact that this range incorporates the new 4th generation Noiseless.
The first few moments, in which many users have tuned the instrument, already begin to reveal some good signals: tuning is easily achieved, and the first chord already offers us a comforting clarity. The intervals described by the different voices of the chord are released fluently and in a complementary way.
Once connected, we do a little review of the classic 5 pickup positions on the clean channel. On a personal note, many users have loved the sound character of this guitar, it has strength and is not shy. But possibly this is where there is a greater dilemma depending on the expectations of each guitarist. Above all, the American Elite Stratocaster delivers a highly detailed, highly controllable sound with a good dose of charm, especially in the middle positions.
At times, it almost sounds “retouched”, as if it had just the right amount of compression and equalization right, without us having to adjust anything on the amp. Although said like this it may seem like the description of the perfect guitar, it is easy for some guitarists to miss some rebellion and excess, especially if they already have a good intuition developed when it comes to getting the best sounds out of their vintage guitars.
Our impression of the Elite Stratocaster is that it could be the ideal instrument for the music worker: it contains a library of sounds almost ready to be recorded, including the classic tones of the instrument and a few more, thanks to its S-1 control. Its ergonomics will also be highly appreciated on stage, as it is optimized for minimal obstructions when playing while retaining the classic look of the Strat.