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Cheap guitar of the week #30 - Squier Vintage Modified Telecaster Custom

Squier Vintage Modified Telecaster Custom

What's the deal with a Telecaster in this specific configuration? Believe me, there are real reasons it exists.

The Squier Vintage Modified Telecaster Custom is a bit of an oddball in the world of Telecasters because it has a configuration that most people don't understand the purpose of.

Quick note before continuing: The Fender version of this guitar is the Fender Classic Series '72 Telecaster Custom, so if you like this guitar and want a Fender version of it, the Classic Series '72 is what you want; it obviously costs more than the Squier does.

What is the Tele Custom?

It's basically a Tele with Les Paul-like controls and a replacement of the mini-single-coil to a humbucker.

For the observant, you will notice that every new Fender American Standard Telecaster right now comes installed with a "Broadcaster" rear pickup and a "Twisted Tele" front pickup. The Broadcaster is classic Telecaster twang, no question about that. But the Twisted Tele is specifically voiced to be more Stratocaster-like. Why? Because of player demand for a front Telecaster pickup that has a usable sound to it.

The old-school way of getting a usable sound out of the front side of a Telecaster was to rip out the mini-single and just drop a humbucker in there. It was good enough of an idea that Fender decided to make a dedicated model with that specific configuration.

Is a humbucker in the front position better than a modern Twisted Tele pickup? That I'm not sure of. I can personally work with either, but I will admit that having a Fender Wide Range Humbucker in the front position is nice to have.

The only thing that takes getting used to is the knobs:


These are "skirted" Fender amplifier knobs, and you get these whether using the Squier or Fender version of the guitar.

The difference between these and Strat knobs is that amp knobs are skinnier and taller. Not really a big deal, but it takes a little getting used to. They work fine otherwise.

Great guitar all around, and I'm glad a Squier version of this exists. This guitar does serve a very specific purpose; it's for Tele players that want a front side pickup with balls to it. Squier offers it for cheap, and cheap is good. 🙂


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