With all the current day obsession with tight neck pockets, and some bashing of older Fenders without tight neck pockets... one might wonder... How did players like Roy Buchannan, Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck, on and on, the great Fender players of the day... how did they EVER get by as serious, professional guitarists... without tight neck pockets??? I'll admit that I, too, appreciate a nice, tight pocket. But that said, my 1976 Strat, which doesn't have a tight neck pocket, is as solid and tone-rich as any fine Strat I've played from current production. I've had it since 1976. (The Shaller tuning machines on it are 1976 vintage, as well - all else is factory original.) I submit... neck pocket tightness is not an indicator of a worthy or unworthy Fender guitar.