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Grande Tele sur un budget - Avis Fender American Special Telecaster

The Fender American Special Telecaster is a recent introduction by the company to fill the void between the Mexican made Standard models/Classic Series reissues and the US Standards. The end result is one of the best value for money Teles that you can get today. It features an ash body, maple neck and fretboard, 22 frets, standard Fender tuners, standard Telecaster bridge, and a typical Telecaster pickup layout but with slightly hotter pickups to please today's modern player. For the most part it's like a standard Telecaster, but the feel of it is designed so that players who are used to a more modern style of guitar will take to it. A common complaint I've had with some Fenders is that the vintage feel turns me off (IE: some of the ressiue models). Not so with this guitar... it has the modern playability and hotter tone that I've come to love from my modern guitars.


This guitar's about as ergonomic as a Tele will get without major modifications to the design. It's a tad on the heavier side given the tonewoods used, but that seems to be par for the course for many modern Teles nowadays. It doesn't have any features such as body contours but considering the fact that it sticks to the classic design as a general rule it's quite nice to play. The upper fret access is decent, though the single cutaway/neck joint design is definitely a setback for someone who is used to a sleeker design.

Getting a good tone out of this guitar isn't difficult. It sounds like you would expect... a bright and crunchy sounding Telecaster that is honest and will showcase mistakes easily. It works well with a variety of amps and tonal styles so that is a plus for sure.


The tones out of this guitar to me are pure Tele at their core, but with generally a bit more punch and attitude that stems from the slightly hotter circuitry. The classic Tele tone is there throughout though, cutting through the mix regardless of the tone used or style being playing. Through a clean amp, the tones range from jazzy and dark to bright and jangly, perfect for a whole host of different musical styles from jazz through to country. Switching to a more aggressive driven tone brings out some fantastic harmonic overtones from the pickups and the gain is put to excellent use along with the inherent Telecaster brightness for classic or modern rock/punk type tones.


All in all I think the Fender American Special Tele is a great guitar for someone who is looking for a great Telecaster that combines the best of the vintage guitar with more modern features to suit today's player. It's very reasonably priced at about $850 new and is definitely worth a look considering it's one of the only USA made Fenders to sell for under $1,000 new. Definitely check one out when you get the chance!