What’s the diff between mim and Mia Tele’s?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by kmckenna45, Jun 6, 2021.

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  1. yegbert

    yegbert Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have only two MIM teles. One is a Classic ‘50s that has a serial number dating to 2004 (which is also when I bought it new), and the other is a “‘69 Thinline” I bought new a few years later. I don’t know where the hardware was made, but all the screws from them I have observed were SAE threaded. The original pickups had plastic bobbins with white marker-looking handwritten numbers, and the bridge pickup had no metal baseplate. They had CTS pots and pickup switches that looked like either Oak Grigsby or CRL, I forget which.

    I have seen some saddle parts online, marketed/packaged by Fender, that had SAE threaded screws, but the package said they were made in China. :eek:

    I know some older (‘80s and early ‘90s?) Squiers were MIM and MIJ, but all the newer Squiers I have owned or seen that were made in the later ‘90s and newer were factory marked as “crafted” by other, Asian countries. Many (all?) were also factory marked as “Designed by Fender”.
     
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  2. loopfinding

    loopfinding Friend of Leo's

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    I am not sure if I have seen official fender parts that were MIC. Taiwan for sure, but, that’s a big difference as far as QC is concerned. Taiwanese-made (or with Taiwanese oversight on the mainland) is generally pretty solid across the board vs straight mainland contractors.
     
  3. tele12

    tele12 Friend of Leo's

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    This is not completely true.
    The bridges are not interchangeable on all models, they have different mounting hole patterns.
     
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  4. Ebidis

    Ebidis Tele-Afflicted

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    I wondered how long it would take for someone to post this cliche.
     
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  5. nopicknick

    nopicknick Tele-Meister

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    From the current offerings I prefer the mim road worn over the American Professional, or Player series. The two road worn guitars I have feel more seasoned, and less polished if you will than the mia counter parts. All a matter of personal taste so no right or wrong decision.
     
  6. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Same issue with control plates. Different sized pots CTS etc...
     
  7. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Wait! That's been posted before? :lol::lol:
     
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  8. Happy Enchilada

    Happy Enchilada Tele-Meister

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    I have a butterscotch MIM Player Tele that I wouldn't part with. Most factory Fender pickups are not for me, so I swapped them out for Seymour Duncan "Hot Tele" set. Replaced the evil Korean pots and switch and jack with parts from Bourne, Switchcraft, and Oak Grigsby. Added a GraphTech nut, string trees, and saddles. And just for fun, swapped the tuners for Fender lockers. It plays like a dream, sounds terrific, stays in tune well, and it's my favorite to date. Total investment of $850, and you can't get a used MIA in playable condition for that. Not knocking the MIA Fender product, but I still have a kid in college and I'm not a touring pro, so I can't justify the investment. Besides, it was a fun project.
     
  9. Slim Chance

    Slim Chance Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes, but it is the hole pattern that determines the bridge not the country of origin.
     
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  10. Fenderbaum

    Fenderbaum TDPRI Member

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    I buy MIMs and make them Better than MIAs over time.
     
  11. yegbert

    yegbert Poster Extraordinaire

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    upload_2021-6-7_7-40-0.jpeg


    https://darrenriley.com/store/fender-american-vintage-58-telecaster-saddles-0992089000/

    http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-5...0001&campid=5338148343&icep_item=133349971944

    My wife works as registrar in a private school office, and the guy who handles who handles discipline matters has an office in the same larger room. My wife sometimes joins in the discussion sessions. She hears all kinds of improbable stories about discipline, and said said one time they were discussing something a young student had done wrong. The teacher in the session discussing this, asserted that she had herself directly seen the student misbehave, while the parent who was there for that session but obviously wasn’t there for the incident refused to accept the fact the student had misbehaved. This is the classic incredulous line she said:

    “Are you going to believe what you saw with your own eyes, or what I’m telling you?!” o_O:p
     
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  12. loopfinding

    loopfinding Friend of Leo's

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    fair enough! i see people confuse ROC with PRC a lot in electronics stuff, so i wasn't sure, hahaha.
     
  13. golfnut

    golfnut Friend of Leo's

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    On my Custom shop 52 I paid about $75 for a setup and a bit of work when I bought it. On my MIM tele I paid over $200 for a replaced nut (didn't have to just my preference) some fret work and set up. Its as good a player as my custom shop. I prefer my custom shop only because the neck is a fatter U shape that is my favorite. Although the neck on my MIM brad paisley isn't small either and the V is very comfortable. The biggest difference is that my custom shop has rolled edges and the BP MIM doesn't. But that doesn't really bother me. I don't like edges to be too rolled anyway. My custom shop 52 makes me feel like my MIM was a fantastic value even though the MIM was expensive for what it is. But the 2 are equally great players. I mean they're telecasters, its not complicated.
     
  14. loopfinding

    loopfinding Friend of Leo's

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    it's either made in the US by Mexicans, or in Mexico...by Guatemaltecos, hahaha.
     
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  15. yegbert

    yegbert Poster Extraordinaire

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    It seems that some here are confusing MIM/MIA differences with Squier/MIA differences. Please don’t!

    The “modern” style, flat bottom bridge that has been used on the MIM “Standard” Tele along with the same style Gotoh bridge you can get from places like Stewart-Macdonald, uses the same mounting screw and string-through hole pattern, as the first vintage teles Fender made. And many members here including me have used them interchangeably.

    The ‘90s Squier Standard teles [that I have seen, excepting a ‘97 Thinline Protone made in Korea] have 3 mounting screw holes that are at least close in their placement to American Standards, at least of the same period. But string through holes when used were lower on the body (and bridge) than either vintage or American Standard.

    around 2000, the Squier mounting holes moved lower on the body (and bridge); and included two more screws/holes at the higher end of the plate, and adopted string through holes placed compatible with American Standards.

    Many non-MIM Squier teles have a wider control plate, and a slightly wider pickguard semicircle cutout to match, than MIA vintage standard teles. But I thought MIM Standard teles were the same on this design point, as vintage MIA Teles. Aren’t they?

    Also, the CTS pots differ in control plate hole diameter (and at least usually in impedance, 250K vs. 500K) between MIM Standard and Squier Standard, not between MIM Standard and MIA vintage.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2021
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  16. Fendereedo

    Fendereedo Poster Extraordinaire

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    Thanks for pointing that out. Yes, my mistake.
     
  17. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    +2 Loopfinding pretty much nailed it down.

    One thing MIM fenders really have going for them is Fender does a good job with the satin finish on the neck. There are a lot of other low & mid price guitars that seem to have sticky glossy finishes on the back of the neck and then the premium guitars have a better finish that's not so sticky. Fender does a great job at not doing that with the MIM guitars.

    I think the G&L Tributes are great guitars too but they tend to have a sticky glossy finish and you have to go up to the MIA G&Ls to get rid of that.

    The other really important thing with Fenders is the nut width/neck width, they really do seem to differentiate with nut width/spacing at the nut going from Squier (narrowest) -> MIM (middle of the road) -> MIA (widest). It's not huge but if you have a preference one is going to be better than the others.

    A lot of the other stuff is more simple stuff like extra care in assembly & finishing, and that's easy stuff to address/improve yourself if you need to. Wiring & pickups are cheap/easy to work on, and when I had a MIM Fender those were the weak points.
     
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  18. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    The bodies on MIC Squier Strats are about 1/4 inch thinner than regular Strats. A standard Trem bridge sticks out the back.
     
  19. KyAnne

    KyAnne Tele-Afflicted

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    I have a '69 thinline MIM made in 2007 that DOES have the walnut plug. Of course when I bought it in 'o9 these guitars street price was $949. Not cheap.
     
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  20. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    Hmmmmm.... I guess it's possible I may be wrong about something. :lol:
     
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