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Squier Affinity Telecaster and thoughts about fat guitar players
It's kind of embarrassing that I have to admit what I'm about to say, but the truth must be told.
The Squier Affinity Telecaster is, as far as I know, the cheapest Tele guitar Squier makes. I tried one again over the weekend. Yes, again. And I loved it. I'm seriously considering buying one in the near future. More on that in a moment.
Seven months ago I wrote It's all about the belly cut, where I sung the praises about how great a belly cut is on a solid-body electric guitar.
There was something different about me seven months ago. I was 42 pounds heavier than I am now. I weighed 197 lbs (14st 1 or 89kg) back then. Now I'm 155 (11st 1 or 70kg).
The last time I played a Telecaster shape without a belly cut in the back of the body, I was fat. Last Sunday is the first time I played one without that cut as my slimmer self...
...and the guitar was amazingly comfortable to play.
While noodling around on that Tele, I realized something. The entire reason I did not like the shape of the traditional Telecaster slab guitar shape before is because I was fat. While playing the guitar sitting, my fatness rested the guitar against my gut and leaned it in a way that would stick right into my ribs. But now that the fatness is gone, no more sticking. It's the same guitar as before and nothing has changed. What changed is me.
I was pleased that I could finally like the Telecaster slab shape, but at the same time embarrassed. For all this time, the reason why the Tele shape didn't agree with me had nothing to do with the guitar and everything to do with the fat gut I used to have. Yeah, I'm slim now, but knowing it was the former fatness that made me not like the Tele was a very humbling moment.
Squier Affinity Tele = GOOD
I've played both Squier Affinity Strats and Teles. I'm not too fond of the Affinity Strat. There's nothing particularly wrong with Affinity Strat, but it just doesn't do anything for me. The same can be said for the Classic Vibe Strat. I'm just not into that Strat either. Again, nothing particularly wrong with that guitar either, but it's just not my thing. My two favorite Squier Strats are the Vintage Modified series and the Bullet series.
The Squier Affinity Tele, again being the cheapest Tele that Squier makes, is a seriously good, cheap guitar. There's a lot to like about it.
Skinny at the nut and a rather pronounced roundness to it, but that nearly-unfinished feel to it is seriously comfortable. I could noodle on it for days.
Not the best, but far from the worst. Surprisingly good for a guitar as cheaply priced as it is.
With Affinity Strats, I can feel the cheapness of the instrument. With the Affinity Tele, I don't. No creaking, nothing loose, nothing bad going on. It feels solid from top to bottom.
The Affinity Tele sounds just fine as-is for the most part. I personally would not need to do a pickup upgrade in one. The balance between the rear and front pickup gives that super-nice middle position sound that Telecasters are famous for.
My only real complaint is that the front pickup (as in the "neck" pickup) on its own "blares" a little bit. But the middle position more than makes up for it. Rear position is just fine. No complaints there.
Real-deal metal knobs on this Tele, just like it should be.
However, I do not like the "top hat" switch tip. Yes, I know this is traditional to the Tele, but I'm just not a fan of it. Thankfully, the "barrel" switch tip exists. They are typically used on "Super Strat" Telecasters where there are 5 positions instead of just 3, but I believe they can also be used on 3-position switches (don't quote me on that because I'm not sure.)
Should I get one of these Teles, the first order of business will be to get rid of that top hat tip in favor of the barrel tip, assuming I can get one that fits properly.
Will there be a Squier Affinity Tele in my future?
I'm pretty sure there will be.
For a while now I've been wanting a "hardtail" maple-fretboard guitar. I thought about getting a Squier Strat, but I'm favoring the two-pickup layout these days because of the Jazzmaster.
Why didn't I just buy the Affinity Tele I tried out over the weekend? I didn't like the color. If they had one with the maple board in Arctic White (a pale yellow,) Black or Metallic Red, I would have bought it.
To get the color I want, I will most likely have to buy the guitar online. If that's what needs to be done, well, I'll do it.
When will I do it? I don't know just yet. But if I do, of course I will be posting articles here and videos too. 🙂
Published 2015 Jun 8
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