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Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster Review

5838455512_38e1a607ffHere’s my Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster review. These are my honest opinions of this guitar and hopefully it will give you a better idea of whether this guitar will work for you or not.

I’ve always wanted a telecaster. They have a very unique sound to them that I love. I have also always wanted a guitar to keep in Open G Tuning. It is so much easier to play in Open G Tuning when you set the guitar’s action higher and put on a set of .011’s. I also play slide in Open G and doing those two things makes it so much easier to play.

There are so many telecasters out there now that it’s kind of overwhelming. There are some really expensive ones as well. I first looked at the Hot Rod 52 by Fender and it seemed to be a great choice. The only problem was that I didn’t have $1700 to throw down on a guitar at the moment.

So I began searching on the internet and kept seeing the Squier Classic Vibe Tele’s coming up as an excellent choice for an inexpensive telecaster. I paid $349 with shipping for this guitar. This is a little easier to come by than the $1700 for the Hot Rod Tele. I’m sure the Hot Rod is an amazing guitar, and I’m not knocking it. I just don’t have that much cash to fork over for a guitar at the moment. I’m sure many people are in the same boat.

So I received the guitar, and I have to say that it is a beauty to look at. It also plays very nicely. I did have to tweak the action and truss rod to my liking, but it sounds really good! The neck is a little different than I’m used to, but it plays great once I became more accustomed to it. It also has a nice chimey sound to it. That infamous tele sound that everyone knows and loves. Maybe I need to raise the pickups on it, but when I turn the guitar volume down, it simply loses the tone in my opinion. This is something I’ll have to look into further.

I then proceeded to put a set of .011 GHS Boomers on it and tuned it to Open G. Now to me, this is where the guitar really shines. I’m not saying it doesn’t play good in standard tuning, it does. I do, however like my Gibson ES 335 neck better. Although the Gibson 335 can’t get the same tone as the tell and sometimes I would like to have that. I can, however see myself doing a gig in standard tuning with the Classic Vibe, and it being just fine for me. It is a really nice guitar, and for the price it just can’t be beat. I have also played the Classic Vibe Strats as well, and while they are pretty good, they just don’t hold up to the Classic Vibe Telecaster.

Anyway, when I tuned this guitar to Open G Tuning and started playing slide, I was immediately blown away. I had finally achieved the Crossroads tone I had been looking for. It’s big, chimey, and distorts well with my Fednder Vibrolux. I do have to turn it up loud to get the overdrive through the amp though. This is where the Weber Attenuator comes in handy. Adding an OCD to the chain produced some great results as well as the Wave Cannon. Add some vibrato, and you have the tone similar to “Feelin’ Bad Blues” from the movie Crossroads done by Ry Cooder.

Watch the video below to hear how it sounds in Open G Tuning

You can check out this guitar at Amazon here. Fender Classic Vibe 50’s Telecaster

To learn about playing in Open G Tuning please check out my Open G Tuning Course.

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13 Responses to Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster Review

  1. K.L. Aynedter June 16, 2011 at 9:07 AM #

    Very nice squire Tele great sound too

  2. Forrest June 16, 2011 at 9:51 AM #

    Great review, John. Love the demo jam you were doing, also. I was thinking Ry Cooder right away when I heard that tone, I think you nailed it! “Feelin Bad blues” is one of my fave slide songs, too…any chance you could do a lesson on it some time?

    Thanks for doing this review…I am going to look into this guitar. I have been after something lower cost I could keep in an alternate tuning…this might be the deal

  3. John Stanley June 16, 2011 at 11:46 AM #

    Hey John,
    Great guitar. I got one recently also mine is in the sunburst. It’s a great looking and playing guitar. And for the price just too hard to pass up. Have fun with it. Keep up all your great work. I really enjoy your lessons.

  4. senecal pierre June 16, 2011 at 11:50 AM #

    very good lesson, thanks ,from France !

  5. tom June 18, 2011 at 9:55 AM #

    hey john nice guitar thanks for the tip on the sale i bought one for $319.00 can’t beat it ill be looking foward to your open g slide lessons but first i need to purchase your 6 dvd blues guitar lessons ive been working on your free stuff you have sent me plus your u tube videos you got me excited about playing again , i like your style of playing and i like the way you explain things looking forward to your lessons , i like clapton dickey betts , sonny landreth plays a good slide guitar maybe put some of sonny in your open g slide guitar lessons , thanks again for your help , tom hullhorst southern ohio

    • John Tuggle June 18, 2011 at 10:46 AM #

      You’r welcome. It’s a great buy. Let me know how you like it. Glad you like the free lessons too. Have a good weekend!

  6. Bart C June 21, 2011 at 12:57 AM #

    I’ve got a blonde Mexican Tele Special Ed that I really love. Can’t be beat for that twangy sound! John, you continue to amaze me with your knowledge and skill!

  7. Glenn Tonheim.. August 8, 2011 at 9:18 PM #

    Hi!!

    great music..i have just bought a squnier stansdard tele.and its a great guitar.i am not a pro guitar player,but i know a good sound.and a play it on a fender mustang iv..that gives me det blues sound i like..

    Glenn…Norway!!

  8. Eapen August 31, 2011 at 1:35 AM #

    That was an amazing demo John. Really enjoyed it. Slide style sounds very bluesy. Great reviewl

  9. Adrian December 8, 2011 at 10:17 PM #

    John,
    Do not worry a bit about your strat love. all guitar players know “you use the tool that works for the job”
    Strat, LP, SG, 335 we love them all – great demo on the tele I want one.

  10. Alessandro August 31, 2012 at 4:11 PM #

    Amazing video and playing!
    I’ve been reading reviews and watching videos about this cool guitar for days.
    I am Gibson player (fat neck addicted) and I was looking for a single coil guitar, eager to embrace and have a Telecaster in my room.
    Classic Vibe seemed to be my chance to have one without draining my wallet.
    So I went to a big guitar shop in my town and I tryied some MIM, some USA made and, finally, this Classic Vibe.
    Too bad I found the guitar’s feeling a little bit “toy-like”, and I was disappointed (even if, surely, that’s because of my very bad fingers).
    I tookhome a Blacktop Jaguard with a couple of delicious P90.
    Love at first sight!

  11. Mike B. September 6, 2012 at 2:28 PM #

    Got me one of those Too !

    I’ve been playing acoustic for what feels like Forever and could never decide what direction to go for my first electric guitar. I tried LP’s and Strat’s and nothing really gave me that “I have to have this guitar” moment. So I gave up…for almost 10 years.

    I recently started a web search and found so many positive comments on the Squire CV 50’s Tele I had to finally go try one in person. Fell in Love with the sound, look and feel. Everything just felt like it instantly connected to my soul. Regardless of price this was it!
    Paying only $350 was just icing on an already delicious Cake!

    Shortly after I brought it home I found your YouTube Slide demo in Open G.
    Absolutely Floored me! I recognized that Ry Cooder Crossroads sound instantly, even blew the dust off that old DVD and watched it again (twice). I always swore I’d learn that someday…looks like I may finally get that off the bucket list. (I’m turning 50 y/o next Spring)

    P.S.
    I already have my bottle neck slide, GHS Boomer 11’s and just placed my order for your Open G Slide DVD course. Thanks John!

  12. Russell March 22, 2014 at 6:26 PM #

    Didnt make it through the demo…
    Wanted to hear the instrument…

    Sorry…
    Bad example of the guitars ability.
    Glass was killing me.

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