Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Mim Tele std vs Classic 50s

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by goddardo, Sep 28, 2017.

  1. goddardo

    goddardo Tele-Meister

    Mar 22, 2010
    So I have two options for the same price, £325. A mim tele std and a blonde classic series 50s Poly finish , both near mint. I hear different opinions on pickups etc.. Eg. Std better than C50. Just wondering if you guys have had any experience with both models... Cheers guys
  2. Crawldaddy

    Crawldaddy Tele-Meister

    Dec 12, 2006
    The C50 has a vintage fretboard radius (7.25") vs 9.5" on the MIM Std.

    MIM Std has satin finish neck vs gloss on C50.

    MIM Std probably uses alder (website does not specify) vs ash on C50.

    Sealed tuning machines on MIM vs traditional-style on C50.

    My mind tells me MIM Std due to its modern features, will be excellent once a pickup swap happens.

    My heart tells me C50 because of the body wood, vintage appointments which will be closer in spirit to "the original" with the exception of the bridge saddles, which are not brass.

    Decisions, decisions!
  3. goddardo

    goddardo Tele-Meister

    Mar 22, 2010
    Here's the two I'm interested in

    Attached Files:

  4. LKB3rd

    LKB3rd Friend of Leo's

    Jan 10, 2013
    I would go for the 50's Classic. Normally they are a couple hundred more than a standard, so it's a better deal, and I like them better anyway.
    I don't think the pickups will be a lot different in the two, and the standard pickups aren't considered any better than the ones they use on the Classic, that I know of. You can swap out the pickups easily in either one if you decide to.
    Piggy Stu likes this.
  5. beyer160

    beyer160 Friend of Leo's

    Aug 11, 2010
    On Location
    I'd go for the '50s classic- the neck's a little beefier, and the pickups are a nice alnico set- I never liked ceramic Fender pickups much. I also prefer the 3-saddle bridge. Plus, it's just cooler. The only reason I got rid of mine was that I picked up a USA G&L ASAT.
    RadioFM74 and Piggy Stu like this.
  6. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Nov 9, 2008
    I really think it comes down to whether you like a 7.25 radius and small frets or 9.5 and bigger ones.
  7. blille

    blille Tele-Afflicted


    If you've never played a 7.25 it is a big change. I had a 7.25 in a partscaster and ended up swapping it because I couldn't adjust to it.
    MahoganyStratDZ likes this.
  8. KelvinS1965

    KelvinS1965 Tele-Meister

    Apr 9, 2014
    Wokingham England
    This ^

    Although I'm biased as I own a White Blonde 50s Classic in the lacquer finish and recently bought a two tone sunburst 2008 50s Classic in poly (I paid £350 from Coda music FWIW). I just prefer small frets and a 7.25" radius, but I completely understand why someone else wouldn't as I'm the same about 9.5" radius with larger frets.

    Regarding the pick ups; I already had some Fender OVs when I got the white blonde, so pretty much swapped them straight away assuming that they would be 'better'. The sunburst one still has the originals in it and while I do still prefer the OVs in the white blonde, I do like the original bridge pickup (I find the neck one a bit too warm and lower output than my OVs).

    I'm going to mod the sunburst one to make it like the 'new' Road worn Hot Rod model which has a neck humbucker and black pickguard: I played one but couldn't get on with the neck/frets and this was 1/3 of the price and I already have the humbucker, so it's just the cost of the black pickguard and an afternoon with my router, plus of course it has the radius and fret size I prefer...
    MahoganyStratDZ likes this.
  9. beninma

    beninma Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Mar 17, 2017
    I also agree with this, that's a huge glaring difference, pickups are easy to swap out.

    Realistically I'd want the Body/Neck of the Standard MIM + pickups/electronics of the 50s model.

    I'd be on the fence about the bridge.
  10. raysachs

    raysachs Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    May 21, 2017
    Near Philly
    I think the neck and fretboard are always the make or break question with any guitar, particularly electric. You can swap pickups and hardware if it matters to you. And I really don't think the wood or finish makes THAT much difference, although it probably makes some and one or two people somewhere on earth can probably even hear it.

    And it's the shape/profile of the neck (skinny C, soft V, deep C, full on baseball bat, etc), the fretboard radius, and type of wood (not for sound as much as feel - maple and rosewood play very differently and each of us probably has a clear preference). I don't like really skinny necks or really fat ones, but if I had to err in one direction, I'd rather it be a bit fatter than I like than skinnier than I like. I used to play fretboards with a radius of 7.25 and small frets, recently started playing 9.5 with larger frets, thought I should try 7.25 again, and found that I'm way happier with the slightly flatter board with larger frets, although I'm OK with either. The only option I really dislike is a 12" board, which takes the flat thing too far for my taste. My acoustic is 16" and I'm fine with it but I don't play acoustics the same way at all.

    But my preferences don't mean squat - only your's do. So you just have to play a bunch of instruments and at some point, one of them will tell you to take it home. I wouldn't buy an instrument without playing it first, at least not unless I could return it. I bought my strat that way and it was perfect from the first moment, but I had plenty of time to return it if I hadn't bonded with it. Even two of the exact same model can feel notably different.
    eddy8dynamite likes this.
  11. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 25, 2016
    Midwest, USA
    Play both... which feels better? Which sounds better? Use the force...
    t guitar floyd likes this.
  12. BadMojo

    BadMojo Tele-Meister

    Sep 17, 2017
    I haven't read any of the previous post. But I would definitely go with the 50s. The 50s model has vintage style appointments like the truss rod adjustment at the heel versus the headstock and vintage style tuners etc.

    Update, just saw the pictures. That blonde Tele is beautiful. I would definitely go with that. Ymmv
    t guitar floyd likes this.
  13. goddardo

    goddardo Tele-Meister

    Mar 22, 2010
    Thanks for the input guys. Really helpful. I have used a 7.25 radius strat with small frets over the years, but prefer the larger frets since it was re fretted. Also had an early classic 50 tele years ago but not tried a mim standard tele. Like one of you said, my heart says classic 50 but from a practical point of view my head says Standard
  14. goddardo

    goddardo Tele-Meister

    Mar 22, 2010
    Also the classic 50 is fairly local whereas the Standard is not, so difficult to try together
  15. goddardo

    goddardo Tele-Meister

    Mar 22, 2010
    Also the classic 50 is fairly local whereas the Standard is not, so difficult to try together
  16. bottlenecker

    bottlenecker Friend of Leo's

    Dec 6, 2015
    I have a classic 50s and once borrowed a standard mim for a while. I don't like ceramic pickups, and the standard wasn't an exception. I changed the pickups on my c50, but I got sounds I liked from the stock pickups first. I definitely like everything about the c50 better, but I prefer 50s tele sounds in general, so that kind of makes sense. I like western swing, early electric blues, early rock and roll, bakersfield country, etc.
    BadMojo likes this.
  17. goddardo

    goddardo Tele-Meister

    Mar 22, 2010
    Can anyone tell if this C50 is a lacquer or Poly? I've read that it depends if the fender logo is silver or gold. I'm sort of assuming this is a Poly version but not absolutely sure.
  18. IronSchef

    IronSchef Tele-Holic Platinum Supporter

  19. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied Ad Free Member

    Oh, heck.

    Go and try the Classic 50s and if it is decent, just buy it. The price is fair - whereas the MIM Standard is IMO over priced even before you calculate travel.

    The Classic 50s is widely considered a way better made guitar. Way better. My fair assessment of the value of a nice Poly C50s versus a nice MIM Standard is, the Standard is worth about half the value, in money. Nitro version worth even more; unlikely to find a nice one for that price.
    t guitar floyd likes this.
  20. LKB3rd

    LKB3rd Friend of Leo's

    Jan 10, 2013
    That's a poly 50's Classic with the silver logo. The lacquer version has a gold logo.
    KelvinS1965 likes this.
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