Fender Limited Edition 60th Anniversary Triple Jazzmaster
I'm having a difficult time deciding whether this is cool or not.
This guitar is not cheap. But then again, it's a 60th anniversary model and does come with a brown hardshell case. However, it's a modern guitar. Fender as far as I know didn't make a Jazzmaster like this 60 years ago, and describes this guitar as "an homage to the mod ethos that permeates the cult of the Jazzmaster." If you have no idea what that means, neither do I.
What's the color called? Fender didn't say what it is on their product page, so I can't tell you. Looks like Daphne Blue...? What I can say is the guitar has a gloss nitro finish on both the body and neck.
Aside from that, what we've got here is this:
- Alder body
- Maple neck with "'60s Oval C shape", binding, 21 narrow/tall frets, rosewood fingerboard with 9.5" radius, bone nut, slotted tuners, pearloid dot inlays, heel-adjusted truss rod
- A trio of Filter'Tron pickups with Stratocaster 5-way switching
- 4-ply tortoise shell pick guard
- Jazzmaster vibrato system (includes lock button,) with strings sitting on Mustang saddles
- Witch hat knobs
- Special 60th anniversary engraved neck bolt plate on the back
I'm having a hard time deciding if this is cool or not because it's a combination of things both great and awful at the same time.
Looks-wise, yes, this guitar nails it. All the gleaming metalwork of the bridge + pickups set off nicely from the tortoise shell guard. The neck binding works here as do the pearloid dot inlays to complement the pickups. Great appearance all around. I love the "busy" logo work on the pegboard. All the styled text that includes "WITH SYNCHRONIZED FLOATING TREMOLO" is just cool. Love that. Very Fender, very nice.
Function-wise, this guitar also nails it. While I'm not really a fan of 3-pickup guitars these days, Strat players could easily pick up this thing and start wailing away on it easily.
I do not like the heel-adjusted truss rod. Yeah, it makes the guitar look better without the truss rod adjustment hole at the pegboard, but after owning a Jazzmaster with the heel-adjust, I'll never own one again. Having to physically take off the neck of the guitar every time I want to make a small truss rod adjustment gets annoying real quick.
I do not like Mustang saddles on the Jazzmaster. Yes, I understand most players prefer it, but I don't because for me it takes away adjustability of the guitar.
Fender didn't say what the K value of the potentiometers are. Traditional Jazzmaster electronics has a 1M pot with linear taper for volume and 1M pot with audio taper for tone. And if that's what's on this guitar... that might be a bit too screechy for most players. But if Fender used 500K pots (doesn't matter what taper is used,) that would work better with the Filter'Tron pickups for my ear.
Ultimately, I think the guitar works well for what it is. And what is it? A hot-rodded Jazzmaster. Maybe that's what Fender meant by "an homage to the mod ethos." If Fender is saying this is a hot-rod Jazzmaster, mission accomplished.
Anyone who owns this particular axe will at bare minimum get a ton of eye candy, because photos do no justice for nitro finished Fender guitars. In my experience, a Fender blue in the lighter hue coated in nitro just pops with color like you wouldn't believe.
As a player's guitar, if you're okay with that heel-adjusted truss rod, the Strat-style switching should make this Jazzmaster very easy to get along with.