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Fender "Anniversary" Jazzmasters are surprisingly cheap

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The reason for this is probably something you didn't consider.

Actually, there are a few reasons. Let's get into that.

You see the Fender 60th Anniversary '58 Jazzmaster (made in 2018) and think, "Wow, all that must be at least 4 grand".

Nope. Way below that.

Then you take a look at other "Anniversary" Jazzmasters and say, "Wow (again)! The prices on these things are so low! Why...?"

Here are the reasons why:

Reason 1: It's a traditional Jazzmaster.

Traditional Jazzmaster guitars usually have everything that make a Jazzmaster a Jazzmaster. This means you get both the rhythm and lead circuit, the 1K linear taper potentiometer for lead circuit volume control and 1K audio taper potentiometer for tone control, true Jazzmaster pickups (meaning not a P90 in a Jazzmaster case) and neck with some actual shoulder to it.

In other words, the "complicated" original style Jazzmaster. Super-bright pickups, a vibrato system that takes getting used to if you don't know the Jazzmaster, and the guitar has an offset waist (meaning the neck sticks slightly further other because of the "lean" in the body).

Reason 2: Not a Stratocaster, not a Telecaster.

Strats and Teles always outsell the Jazzmaster and it's always been that way. Sellers have a more difficult time selling them, and for owners, custom parts for the Jazzmaster aren't anywhere near as plentiful.

Yes, there are custom parts available. Pickups, bridges, different vibrato system and so on. But the selection available is obviously greater for the Strat/Tele guitar.

Reason 3: "Anniversary"

It's typically true that any Fender (or Squier) guitar labeled as an "Anniversary" is priced high out of the gate, then the price drops off a cliff shortly thereafter. The guitar is worth its most only when new and the model was introduced fewer than 6 months ago.

After that 6 months, however... yeah, that's when the price dives and stays down. Very rarely does an Anniversary guitar gain real collector value. The guitars are released to make a quick buck, and the ones that didn't sell initially get their prices slashed just to get rid of them.

There's actually nothing wrong with an Anniversary guitar at all, and in fact should be better built than the standard production run of the same instrument.

And where the Jazzmaster is concerned, oh yeah, it's easy to find one that has had $500 or more slashed off the price.

The only real negative of a Jazzmaster Anniversary model is that color choice is limited. This is by design because an Anniversary guitar is supposed to have a color not available on any standard production run of the same guitar. Usually, the color given to an Anniversary is a good one, but you'll have to look at the listings yourself to see if there's anything that really catches your eye.

Published 2024 Jan 2

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