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What happens when your cheap guitar feels better than "the real thing?"


It's my belief that every guitar player at some point has to make the mistake of buying an expensive electric guitar before he learns not to waste his money. It doesn't matter how many times I tell players, "DON'T DO IT!", because they're going to do it anyway, waste cash and then realize the expensive stuff really isn't any better than the cheap stuff.

Here's another interesting thing that happens: There may come a point when you actually prefer your cheap guitar over your expensive one.

Since I bought my Squier Bullet Strat, I find myself going back to that guitar again and again - even though I own a Fender Stratocaster. Why? I just like the neck on the Bullet better, and I also really like the pickups in it. And yes, I'm talking about an all-stock Bullet with no mods other than a switch-out to black knobs instead of white.

I like my Squier Bullet so much that I'm actually considering getting an HSS version of the guitar just because I like the feel of the neck that much. And yes, I would get it even though I own a Fender HSS that does everything - including a split-to-single-coil option.

Everything about my Fender is better, hardware-wise. Better pickups, better tuners, better fit and so on. But that Bullet just has a neck to die for.

I tell people over and over again: Go cheap. You'll be able to buy a lot more guitars (why have just one?), guitar stores never give you any hassle about playing the cheap guitars as long as you want to try them out, and sometimes it's actually true that the cheap axes actually feel and sound better.

Is my Bullet "perfect?" No, but damned close. The control knobs are smooth and always have been, the neck feels better the more I play it, the sound of the pickups is a tone I really like and so on. My only real complaint is that yeah, it could use better tuners and maybe a nut made of material that promotes better string travel. But other than that, I can't really think of anything else bad about it.

I'm not saying my Bullet is "the guitar" for everyone, but it is the one I play most. I have the Fender for when I want more growl from a humbucker, and the Epi Les Paul P90 for when I want the "deeper" P90 sound...

...but that neck on the Bullet is what keeps me going back to it again and again; it's just an amazing player.

There is no shame in going cheap when it comes to guitars

Remember, the only people who would make fun of you for owning a cheap guitar are idiot guitar players who think a high price tag means "quality." Screw them; play what you want. When you're out playing with friends or at a gig or whatever, fans do not care what kind of guitar you're playing. As long as the song is good and the sound is right, that's all that matters.

Incidentally, the Galaxy Trash teaser I just posted recently? That's nothing but Squier Bullet that you hear in that clip and not the Fender.

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