Brutal American Vintage Jazzmaster II review

Wound_Up

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I agree. I can get my cheapos to play quite well, with varying amounts of tech work, but if I were to buy a guitar much above $500, I'd expect it to be "just right" when I first took it out of the box. If it wasn't, I wouldn't buy it or I'd send it back.
My$250 guitars from Monoprice are right out of the box. There's no excuse for anything over that price.
 

monkeybanana

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I’m a player. I’m my own tech. That guitar would be utterly unacceptable to me for $2400. Not that I wouldn’t spend that much, I definitely have and would again. But for $2400 that guitar should be flawless except for a setup to personal preference.

When I say “setup”, as a tech, I mean string gauge preference, string height, intonation, pickups heights, relief. Maybe a slight caressing of the nut slots if necessary to accommodate your preferred string gauge.

Anything more than that is not a setup. It’s work that wasn’t performed properly at the factory. It’s lazy manufacturing.

No brand new guitar at any price point should need it’s frets leveled and crowned. I shouldn’t have to cut a new nut because the factory one looks like it was cut by a blind toddler on shrooms. Nothing over a couple hundred bucks should need neck shims to play right. None of that stuff is part of a “setup”.

And definitely nobody who shells out over two thousand dollars for an MIA guitar from a major manufacturer should have to turn around and spend MORE money on it so they can take it out and gig it. Sure, new guitars need setups. They shouldn’t need major surgery. We do all kinds of marveling at our “golden age” of guitars right now, but the simple fact of the matter is we feel that way because in many instances we’ve become accustomed to pure crap.

Somewhere along the way people started accepting pitiful fret and nut work, and other flaws as “the guitar just needs a setup”. No. What that guitar needs is to be returned.

The example in the video is horrendous. I paid 2500 last year for a brand new PRS, that was by all accounts and angles, an absolutely perfect instrument. Not a blemish, not a swirl mark, not a hair out of place. Perfect setup and intonation, and the most flawless fretwork I’ve ever seen on a sub- $3K instrument. For over $2k, that’s what you’re supposed to get. Because if they can do it profitably, so can Fender. Or anyone else.

With what I’ve seen lately, any Fender guitars I buy going forward are going to be older, used examples until I’m certain they’ve gotten their act together.
Totally. This is not a setup issue. The wiring is atrocious too. I don’t expect a shop to redo that before it hits the floor but I expect better from the factory. I have old AVRIs and they have their little issues but none like the ones in the vid.

My coworker buys Squiers and Epiphones whenever there is a super sale and most of them are better than these new AVRIs construction wise.

This is not about doom and gloom. It’s about a guitar that is not what we expect from that Fender line especially for the money.
 

bottlenecker

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They’re $2,000 because they invented the look and sound

I don't think the "they" that owns and runs the business presently known as Fender invented anything. I know they want me to think they are Fender, but they're just business people who own a name to me.
I like today's Fender only as long as they do a good job making things I want.

Right now it seems Fender is taking a hopefully temporary break from quality control. I've heard enough reports about their USA and Mexican guitars this year that I'm just not going to buy a new Fender at this time.
 

cyclopean

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I don't think the "they" that owns and runs the business presently known as Fender invented anything. I know they want me to think they are Fender, but they're just business people who own a name to me.
I like today's Fender only as long as they do a good job making things I want.

Right now it seems Fender is taking a hopefully temporary break from quality control. I've heard enough reports about their USA and Mexican guitars this year that I'm just not going to buy a new Fender at this time.
You don’t get to ask for $2k for a guitar with issues just because you own a dead man’s name.
 

Fenderbaum

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I thought Fender didn't level the frets. Press on, ship out.

The grounding thing was hillarious though.
 
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Uncle Daddy

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I wonder what the current quality of Fender Japan guitars is like. The only Japanese guitars I've owned have been Gretsch, and every one was faultless.

I've (briefly) owned 3 AO strats. The 2019 was fine, just not really "me". The other 2 later ones were not great. I've got to the point where I'm happer rolling my own now; at least that way any QC issues are down to me.

My AO 60s "tribute". All lacquer, handwound pickups, ebony fretboard, less than $500 in it.
P1020384.JPG
 

ChicknPickn

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The quality of "cheap" imported guitars these days is way too high for this sort of thing to go on. When I look at the fretwork on a $400 EART and compare it to what I see on premium-branded stuff - - even my American-made 50th Anniversary Strat - - it seems the major names are riding too much on brand name recognition.
 

fenderchamp

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I wonder what the current quality of Fender Japan guitars is like. The only Japanese guitars I've owned have been Gretsch, and every one was faultless.

I've (briefly) owned 3 AO strats. The 2019 was fine, just not really "me". The other 2 later ones were not great. I've got to the point where I'm happer rolling my own now; at least that way any QC issues are down to me.

My AO 60s "tribute". All lacquer, handwound pickups, ebony fretboard, less than $500 in it.
View attachment 1056075
Is it a partscaster?

Cute pair in any case

Will you tell us about that amplifier please?
 

Uncle Daddy

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Is it a partscaster?

Cute pair in any case

Will you tell us about that amplifier please?
The amp is one of my more recent builds. Pine cab, 12" alnico Weber, Mallory caps. The Classic tone PT is a fraction too hot to give the mythical 315v so it's a little louder with later break up than an original 62, which actually suits the speaker. Probably the perfect club amp. Perfect blend of clarity and mids, with some growl when pushed. P90s make it sit up and bark.
And then there's the trem. Leave it on, and hit some big chords you don't really notice it, but as the volume dies back, that's when it shines.
 

Lef T

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I recently bought a new Fender American Pro Jazzmaster.
The manufacture date is 2019.
It's a lefty and they were moving it out because of the new American Pro ll.
I paid $1299.
I have zero complaints about it.
Good to go out of the box.
Fender even put left handed pots and a treble bleed in it.
I lowered the action and threw on some nut sauce.
It's become my number one.

IMG_0680.JPG
 

Sgt Pepper

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I bought a new Vintera Jazzmaster last year and had a few problems with it, so I took it back to a GC store. The sales guy said they take back more Jazzmasters than any other guitar.

I bought a 2020 American Telecaster and 2011 American Standard Stratocaster since then. No problems. edit because I forgot about a new Classic Vibe Thinline Telecaster I bought a couple months ago. No problems with it either after a simple set up.
 
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