Vintera 50's Telecaster Review

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Corvus, Jul 16, 2019.

  1. Corvus

    Corvus TDPRI Member

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    I've played a number of Teles over the last many years including 60's; 70's; 80's Standard; Classics, Vintage Vibes, Squiers and my favourite Roadworn.

    These Vinteras have just arrived in the UK - I had to try them out to see if the publicity rang true regarding specs and pickup changes etc - or were they just the Classic series updated? I did find the Classic series well made but a little lacking in character.

    Pleased to say this Fiesta Red 50's Vintera is a "proper" vintage-style Tele with decently upgraded specs. By "proper" I mean: Old style bridge and through body stringing. Brass saddles, Vintage 7.25" radius board and small vintage frets; no fancy switching - just a three-way. The only vintage appointment I don't like is the thin white shiny 5 screw guard that is already warping - but that's what they used to do - so really "vintage!"

    The neck is big. Fairly deep but with a lot of shoulder so a "U" shape and beautifully blended into the headstock. Some say a big neck is a key to tone - well you have one here but, even with my small hands, I don't find it uncomfortable; I'm a "thumb -over-the-top" player and this shape I find a good fulcrum for bending. But whether you are comfortable with a neck like this is personal preference - you need to try one; others in the series have different shapes. Very nicely lacquered; it looks right, not OTT!

    The pickups are said to have been "doctored" by Tim Shaw for each period and yes, I can certainly detect a real improvement on the general vintage spec of the old Classics. On this 50's model - they are not high gain so if that's your thing you need to look at others in the series, What they are, is clear as a bell and don't suffer from over loud bass strings. I think the bridge p.u. is alnico 3 - the weakest of the magnets.
    The neck p.u. is also quite clean and not too bassy as you often find. Turning down the volume control knocks off high end, so there isn't a bypass cap and resistor to retain this; the tone control is a bit muddy too and neither pot has a great deal of usable range so these are things to target when the warranty runs out - but everything works as it should and there isn't much to go wrong.

    Straight out of the box, setup was pretty good with a well cut nut, perfect fretting and compromise action because of the small radius but I found the action would go quite low without choking. Personally I like to feel the fingerboard and prefer the original radius and small frets but the "modified" models in the series have 9.5" radius and bigger frets if that is your preference.This one really plays very well, excellent sustain and rings all the way up the fingerboard.

    Sounds. We might all have ideas on what a 50's Tele is supposed to sound like but I guess Fender ought to know. This is not a high gain guitar but wonderful for clear and clean with a great ring and snap and as twangy as you like - very expressive and great for dynamics. Of course you might like some gain but here you are starting with a the clean basics rather than over wound pickups (as on some other models) which already have impacts on tone.

    This is a very good clean, well playing Telecaster with a convincing vintage vibe. Mexican? Who cares it's as well made as any USA model I've had and better than a few! Here in the UK we have to pay the £ prices for what you pay in $ so we are about £740 here. I don't think that's too bad for a genuine Fender product as good as this is. It also comes in sonic Blue and Sunburst.



    Vinteart01.jpg Vintera T04.jpg
    Vinterat06.jpg Vinterat03.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  2. El Tele Lobo

    El Tele Lobo Friend of Leo's

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    Great review and very nice looking tele. If you record a clip or vid with those pickups, please post it here so we can dig them. Sounds like Fender will do well with these if they're as good as you say. Enjoy!
     
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  3. CaineIsCarter

    CaineIsCarter Tele-Meister

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    Excellent read, thank you. Lovely looking guitar.

    My Mexican JM is probably better-built than either of my two other electrics, both of which are USA.
     
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  4. archetype

    archetype Fiend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    That's a good, thoughtful report. Keep us informed as you live with it a while.

    I'm intrigued by the U-profile neck. That's a return to the real thing and is overdue for Fender.
     
  5. logans_tele

    logans_tele Tele-Meister

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    I played one of these the other day at GC and the neck felt very much like a Baja neck in terms of the shape and thickness of it (not the fretwire or radius).
     
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  6. boris bubbanov

    boris bubbanov Telefied Ad Free Member

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    The maple neck looks quite dark.

    Is anyone finding this to be true as to most of them?

    Also, does anyone know if the pickups are RWRP? In case anyone wants to install a 4 way (which I'm addicted to now).
     
  7. deytookerjaabs

    deytookerjaabs Friend of Leo's

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    I was scoping one out two days ago.


    Yeah, the necks photograph dark but in person aren't too bad, not exactly the pumpkin color they used to be. The one I saw was the same "Fiesta Red." Though, more of some hybrid orange/pink thing with a robust clear coat.


    They vary, always have. This'n had a huge neck, too much relief but that's how they get when new. Plugged in the sounds was just fantastic, great clear pickups and some brand of natural tone suck that added to the twang.


    Great sounding guitars, but any significant different from the "classic series?" I don't think so, maybe the pickups are a bit different but seemed to be the same guitar in a different color.


    Anyways, the one I played was a stellar example in feel/sound. Wish I had the go-ahead on the funds at the moment but couldn't pull the trigger and also didn't want to trade in a more expensive guitar towards it at a loss.



    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
  8. Skydog1010

    Skydog1010 Tele-Meister

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    Great review, thanks
     
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  9. jonzer

    jonzer Friend of Leo's

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    Great review. Made in Mexico doesn't bother me with the vintage stuff. My new Vintera is comparable to my 2003 USA in quality.
    Years ago, I could feel a difference just in the neck between MIM and MIA, but not with these. They're high quality.
     
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  10. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    Thanks for the great reviews! I know now that I am doomed. The Vintera 50s Tele will get me even if I know deep down that I don't need it .... ah well, there are worse things in life than having one Tele too many ;)
     
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  11. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Friend of Leo's

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    I got the 70s custom in fiesta red. I'm really pleased you're enjoying yours. I have nothing but good things to say about mine. Hngd to you.
     
  12. mimmo

    mimmo Friend of Leo's

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    Thanks for the review, I knew I didn't have to read this thread: now I have to have it!
    HNGD.
     
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  13. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    Mimmo and I will open a splinter owners' club called the “fatally attracted/involuntary Vintera 50s owner club” :D My "last ditch" line of resistance is this: as I don’t need another tele or strat now, I will try to hold out until they start surfacing on the used market. I trust in those who like the IDEA of a vintage guitar but then hate the chubby necks, low-wind pickups, small frets, and curvy board. You know: all those things that make a Fender guitar so juicy and sexy …

    Keep ‘em coming! Test my willpower :lol:

    PS: @Corvus have you signed up in the Owners’ Club yet? It’s mandatory, you know ;)
     
  14. orangeblossom

    orangeblossom Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Thanks for the great review and pics.
     
  15. mimmo

    mimmo Friend of Leo's

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    :lol::lol::lol::lol:
    I'm in for the club!
    The only reason I haven't bought one (yet) is that I am waiting to see the FSR road worn and/or lacquer Vintera series and see which one I prefer. And obviously I am also waiting for the poly version to appear on the second hand market. This keeps me from trying one of these fiesta red beauties.

    Any other excuse for me, @RadioFM74 ?? :p:D:D:D
     
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  16. Greggorios

    Greggorios Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Thanks for the review/pics. Much appreciated.
     
  17. Telekaster

    Telekaster Tele-Meister

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    Thanks, great review.

    Made in Mexico?!?! The original Teles and Strats from the 50's and 60's are all pretty much Mexican Made. They are still today's reference.
     
  18. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    None. Same strategy here. And you’re right: if they hit the market with a Fiesta Red tele in lacquer with those specs, I’m cooked. Aï aï aï aï…

    And here I am forever arguing with the many Vintera-haters on the net… I am the biggest Vintera-hater of all! I wasn’t GASing for a strat or tele until now, DAMMIT! ;)
     
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  19. Corvus

    Corvus TDPRI Member

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    I've been playing for fifty years and only God knows how many guitars I've had and let go, many of which would now be worth ££££'s or $$$$. With the original radius and frets I feel the unmodified Vintera's are closer to the experience I've been used to. It's personal of course but the obsession with large or rather, tall frets doesn't do it for me. (I've had my new Gibson's planed!) But then I'm "vintage" too!
    I know this is a telecaster forum but the 50's Strat is so damn good too. There is definitely scope for a "I've got to have it!" section of the forum.
     
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  20. Johnp3

    Johnp3 TDPRI Member

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    Great review. I got one last week in Sunburst and I'm in love! I agree with everything you reported. I play jazz and it has fantastic clean sounds. I have wanted an American Vintage 52 but could never play one and was nervous about the radius and the fret wire so I never decided to order one. I'm trading some stuff in this week and getting one before the new ones are gone. I have been playing for 32 years and have never been so happy with a guitar and I have gone through so many. I have a bunch of Tele's I love but this thing through my Champ is pure magic! I can't say enough good things about it for the money.
     
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