Realistically, both guitars are extremely comfortable. New alnico-magnet pickups designed by Fender’s resident pickup guru Tim Shaw grace the entire range. 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In the first of a series looking at the chord shapes and sequences used by the Beatles, we get inside the head of John Lennon and find a solid rhythm guitarist with an ear for original chord changes. The latest guitar news, reviews and features delivered to your inbox. No bigger than a chunky stompbox, Orange’s latest Terror is a fully fledged 20-watt amplifier complete with valve preamp and (sort of) channel switching. Truss-rod adjustment is at the headstock for ease of access and although they appear to be Kluson-style units from a distance, Fender’s new ClassicGear machineheads have an 18:1 gear ratio for smoother and more precise fine-tuning. By mixing magnet types, Fender claims the V-Mod pickups achieve better balance across the pickups, not only as a set, but across all 6 strings, too. They’re raw, slightly unapologetic, and pack plenty of angst and character. Positions 2 and 4 sound absolutely fantastic – none of the bloated lower mids that you can get with lesser matched pickups: they simply sing. Railway sleepers these jumbos decidedly are not – the fretwire is neatly installed and helps provide an easy, bend-friendly playing surface on both the Telecaster’s satin maple and Stratocaster’s bona-fide rosewood fingerboards. The Telecaster’s three-way wiring is simpler, and it also features new pickups named after the Sierra Nevada’s most popular tourist destination. I have another question, from experience can any of you tell me which of the following guitar offers more bang for your buck: The American Professional Tele, the American Performer Tele, or the American Special Tele. New polyurethane finishes include satin versions of Fender’s classic Lake Placid Blue, Sonic Blue and Surf Green, while our review Telecaster comes in a cool new coppery metallic that Fender has christened ‘Penny’. While we can attest to the fact both of these guitars are certainly American-made Fenders in terms of feel, tone and response, we can also verify that they are different guitars, and they are targeted at different types of guitar player. There is no room for sloppy technique with these frets. Very cool indeed. Whereas the American Professional has an appearance which is just that – a little more refined and professional, with its tamer, smaller headstock profile. The Performer features a ‘Modern-C’ neck profile, while the Professional offers a slightly girthier feel, courtesy of its modern ‘Deep-C’. Yet, as trends have shifted over the years, making Leo’s original designs work hasn’t always been a breeze. The November 2020 issue of Guitar Magazine is out now! The Professional’s design is perhaps a little swifter to restring, in this regard. This is a cool feature, that adds versatility to the Performer Strat that is absent from the Professional’s conventional 5 pickup positions. The balance between a Tele’s pickups is of huge importance; set the amp to compensate for a thin-sounding bridge unit and the neck turns to mush, dial in a Strat-like spank at the neck and the bridge unit can unleash a volley of frozen darts. Happily, there’s no imbalance here. And if you’re in the market for a new American-made Fender, why not let us know, and we can help you choose the right instrument for you. Five years on from the King Of The Blues’ death in 2015, aged 89, a new movie featuring Wendell Pierce as BB is in the works. So why the price difference? From upstart beginnings in the early 60s, Eric Clapton soon established himself as one of the decades’ most lauded players. In part two of our look at the chord shapes and sequences which define Paul Simon’s sound, we focus on his early years as a solo artist. Before delving into the differences between the two instruments, let’s first take a look at what they share. This allows you to get a neck/bridge combination that is reminiscent of a Tele’s middle position, or even to engage all three single-coil pickups, at once. The Narrow-Tall frets on the Professional seem to have a slightly taller crown to the fret, where they offer the feeling of precision under your fingertips, but demand precision from the player, too. © 2020 Guitar.com is a member of the media division of BandLab Technologies. The Performer sports the more retro, oversized Fender headstock associated with electric guitars of the ‘70s – it’s quite hip. Sub-$/£1,000 examples are now supplied with rosewood substitutes like Pau Ferro and Indian Laurel. Both guitars incorporate Fender’s Greasebucket tone circuit which, via a pair of capacitors and a resistor housed on a tiny PCB, is designed to attenuate high-end without muddying things up. Unveiled in early December 2018, Fender’s American Performer Series seeks to offer just that, with nine new guitars and basses bristling with new features in a candy store of colours. They are a truly brilliant sounding set of pickups. But otherwise, both guitars are stage-ready, sound excellent and represent solid value for money in the current climate. The guitar-pop pendulum has certainly swung back towards Fender in recent years and their innate clarity and percussive quality means these instruments seem to be able to find space in any mix, no matter how dense or inorganic the surroundings. The middle pickup is reverse-wound and reverse polarity, while a push/pull tone pot adds the neck pickup in parallel, delivering additional tones in positions one and two on the now-customary five-way blade selector switch. It might just help you decide. Engage this, and the guitar suddenly adds the neck pickup into whatever position you have selected on the 5-way blade selector. To our ears, the V-Mods are very balanced, very polished and – unsurprisingly – modern-sounding. You can probably feel a slight theme emerging, where the Performer takes on slightly more vintage-inspired specs, vs the blatant modernity of the Professional. Made in USA • BUILD Ash body, ‘Modern Deep C’ maple neck with 9.5” radius rosewood fingerboard, 22 narrow tall frets, bone nut • HARDWARE 3x compensated brass saddle string-through-body Tele bridge with modern ‘ashtray’ cover, Fender … They really do stay in-tune very well, indeed. The future of workhorse guitar design, this Tele® guitar’s stunning style, …

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