American Original - Worth the Money?

Tim S

Friend of Leo's
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Oct 27, 2008
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Upstate NY
Just for perspective, if you take the 1955 price of a Telecaster and punch it into any Internet inflation calculator to get today’s equivalent, the end result is greater than $2,000 USD. The relative cost (adjusted for inflation) over time for a US made Telecaster is pretty constant.

It seems like Squires & MIM Fenders have recalibrated peoples’ idea what a reasonable price for a Tele should be.
 

burntfrijoles

Doctor of Teleocity
Joined
Feb 12, 2010
Posts
10,435
Location
Somewhere Over The Rainbow
the pocketbook is an issue for everyone, and will always be, some more, some less so. Regardless it is in fact an issue.
I would be the first to say that don’t buy it if you can’t afford it. The OP didn’t ask if he could afford it. He asked if it was worth it. To me that presupposes availability of sufficient resources. I won’t consider the relative value of a $70k SUV if I can only afford my Honda CRV.
 

giogolf

Tele-Holic
Joined
Jan 15, 2008
Posts
574
Location
Crab Country!
So two years ago, I thought I'd like an AO 60s Tele in LPB
Then the great plague came, and all stock dried up in the UK.
I'd forgotten about it until yesterday, when Fender UK emailed me saying they were back in.
But now I'm looking at the price - Nearly 2 grand (English pounds)
My current Tele is a ten year old American Special, cost £750. It's brilliant.
Is the AO really going to be 2.5 times better? (I do love the colour though)

IMHO, the AO line is one of the best Vintage inspired Fender offerings..

This is why I like them:
1. 9.5 radius board
2. Vintage Tall frets
3. Nitro finish
4. 2017-2021 quality was amazing
5. They are lite weight, my AO60s Tele is 7.6 pounds and my AO60s Strat is 7.7 pounds (they arent feather weight, but very close to what you get with custom shop)
6. The pickups in all the AOs sound amazing, I just love the Fender Pure Vintage line of pickups

My personal opinion on why Fender changed back to AVII is to cheapen them up a bit as the AV, AVRI and AO were to close to the Custom Shop guitars. You are seeing the new AVII line coming in much heavier and some reviews are showing some minor defects in quality control.

My DISCLAIMER.. Dont buy a NEW AO, or any guitar for that matter.. Here in the USA you can get a like new Used AO for $1500 any day of the week.. If you hunt you can get them Sub $1300 (Craigslist and Market Place).

These are just my opinions :)
 

tele12

Poster Extraordinaire
Joined
Dec 2, 2006
Posts
5,227
Location
NY
......
My current Tele is a ten year old American Special, cost £750. It's brilliant.
Is the AO really going to be 2.5 times better? (I do love the colour though)

If you believe your American Special is "brilliant " then no, the AO will not be 2.5 times better a $10,000 Masterbuilt will not be that much better, no guitar will be that much better.
 

BigRiver

TDPRI Member
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Posts
54
Age
46
Location
Washington, DC
I own an American Special as well as an AO60-LPB.

Yes, yes, yes. The AO60 is worth 2.5x the cost of the Special to me. No doubt.
 

Sax-son

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Mar 20, 2019
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Three Rivers, CA
In my opinion, if you are only going to own 1 or 2 guitars, then it is definitely worth it. However, if you are like me, you may want to own a few and then build your own like I do for over a third of the price. For the numbers I have, I would be in the poor house if I purchased all these AV reissues.
 

ThatTeleGuy95

TDPRI Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2021
Posts
7
Age
62
Location
Indonesia
So two years ago, I thought I'd like an AO 60s Tele in LPB
Then the great plague came, and all stock dried up in the UK.
I'd forgotten about it until yesterday, when Fender UK emailed me saying they were back in.
But now I'm looking at the price - Nearly 2 grand (English pounds)
My current Tele is a ten year old American Special, cost £750. It's brilliant.
Is the AO really going to be 2.5 times better? (I do love the colour though)

Yes it is
 

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boris bubbanov

Tele Axpert
Ad Free Member
Joined
Feb 24, 2007
Posts
56,943
Location
New Orleans, LA + in the
Dunno if Ricknbaker is still shopping, but the Elephant in the room is, a genuine jump down in fret size. I know the change would be very good for me, because the wire on that existing guitar gives me trouble. Too big for this longtime player.
 

DustyMike

TDPRI Member
Joined
Sep 19, 2021
Posts
25
Age
37
Location
Canada
I always say....if you can make it happen without collection agencies calling you and being forced to live off Chef Boyardee for 3 months....get the guitar you WANT. Find a way to make it happen.
 

budglo

Tele-Meister
Joined
Feb 15, 2015
Posts
458
Location
NE Ohio
Diminished returns is only an issue if you sell it. If you pay a pretty chunk of change for it and it brings you years of satisfaction and pleasure , inspires you to play music , I’d say those things would have value. I also believe the AO line is holding their value atm. I have a 70th anniversary broadcaster that if I were to sell today I would recoup most if not all of my money , but I play the crap out of it and enjoy every minute of it cuz life’s too short.
 




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