8 Best Squier Guitars – Strat, Tele, Jaguar, Jazzmaster

Updated on by Ross McLeod | Please note that there may be affiliate links on this page.

Squier Guitars provide a more affordable alternative to Fender models, while still competing in terms of tone and playability. The components used in Squier guitars closely resemble those used in legendary Fender axes.

As Squier has grown in popularity, they have produced a wide selection of Fender-inspired models. With high-quality versions of Telecasters, Strats, Jazzmasters, and Jaguars, there's plenty to choose from.

Best Squier Guitars of Different Body Types

Stratocasters require no introduction. Used by some of the most iconic guitarists over the past half-century or so, these legendary axes are renowned for their smooth, versatile tone and unrivaled playability. 

With the Classic Vibe 70's model, Squier has paid tribute to arguably the most innovative decade in rock history. Its affordable price belies the quality of its components, which makes it a genuine alternative to the pricier Fender versions.

The Classic Vibe 70's Strat is fitted with a real bone nut, and a pair of Alnico single-coil pickups, designed by none other than Fender themselves. The pickups produce attitude and twang in abundance and sound great on rhythm or lead parts.

There's also a five-position blade switcher for toggling through the various pickup positions. Additionally, Squier has used the classic C neck shape that players love the Stratocaster for. A vintage tremolo bridge completes the authentic feel of this high-quality electric guitar.

The materials used to compose the 70's Strat include a balanced poplar body with a gloss finish, a smooth-playing maple neck, and an Indian Laurel fingerboard dotted with inlays.

  • Fender-designed single-coil pickups
  • Poplar body with Strat cut
  • Vintage-style tremolo bridge
  • 5-way pickup selector
  • None

With many of the classic features that have made the Fender Telecaster a hugely popular electric guitar for countless years, the Classic Vibe ‘50s version plays beautifully and gives the original a run for its money.

Boasting a pair of Fender-designed Alnico single-coils, this Squier guitar produces the instantly recognizable Tele-twang. To make this model feel as similar to the revered ‘50s Tele, Squier has installed the classic black pickguard, alongside vintage-style tuners.

The tone of the '50s Tele is usually associated with jangly rhythm guitar. This modern tribute stays true to the original tone, which is perfect for country, jazz, blues, or rock music.

With a 3-saddle bridge completing the vintage look and 21 narrow and tall frets, Squier has done a remarkable job recreating this classic Telecaster model. There are also some welcome modern additions like a 3-way pickup selector and a gloss finish on the pine body.

  • Vintage-style tuners and black guard design
  • Alnico single-coil pickups designed by Fender
  • Smooth maple neck & fingerboard
  • Pine body with a gloss finish
  • None

The Bullet Strat HSS HT is a brilliant entry-level guitar that combines affordability with a rich range of tones. This Squier Strat looks and feels exactly like a genuine Fender model, and for its price, is fitted with some impressively high-end components.

The basswood body is ideal for energetic performers, due to its low weight and great mobility. With a classic C-shaped neck made from smooth maple, transitioning between riffs and chords is an easy undertaking.

There's also an interesting combination of pickups included with the Bullet HSS Strat. You are presented with the option of using a pair of snappy-sounding single coils or thick and full-bodied humbucker pickups. This is a departure from the usual trio of single-coils included on most Strats.

One of the reasons Stratocasters have stood the test of time is the unquestionable comfort they provide guitarists with. The familiar body contours ensure that this is still the case, and with a 6-saddle hardtail, the guitar offers resilient intonation and tuning.

  • The balanced tone produced by basswood body
  • Includes a pair of single coils and a humbucking bridge pickup
  • Comfortable Strat contoured body
  • A good choice for beginners, but lacks the playability required for experienced players

The Classic Vibe ‘70s Tele is a truly wonderful tribute to the iconic Fender guitar. Hot-rodded and ready for action, the guitar boasts a tone-rich poplar body and a maple neck that promotes fast playing.

The combination of a warm sounding, wide-ranging humbucker in the neck position, and an authentically vintage-sounding lead single-coil in the bridge provides guitarists with a multitude of versatile tone-producing options.

The Classic Vibe ‘70s Tele really excels in its incredible playability. Some guitarists even prefer this Squier model to Fender’s own, due to the classic maple neck and fretboard combination, in addition to the traditionally shaped body.

There are also some useful add-ons to further boost the playability and output of the guitar. These include a 6-saddle string-through bridge, vintage-style tuners, a 3-way pickup selector, and master volume and tone pots.

  • Gloss-finished poplar body
  • Classic C profile
  • Responsive maple neck
  • Combination of single-coil and humbucker pickups
  • None

The Squier Classic Vibe '60s Jazzmaster produces an array of surf-rock inspired tones. A solid-body guitar, it is an affordable alternative to the revered Fender Jazz and is brimming with high-class features.

To give the guitar an authentic Jazzmaster feel, Squier has installed a genuine bone nut and switching that is identical to the original. You can flick between individual tone circuits that are specifically-designed for rhythm or lead playing.

The warm and inviting Jazzmaster tone is provided by a pair of Fender-designed alnico single-coil pickups. These are great for producing the classic surf-rock warmth that the Jazz popularized in the 1960s.

The bridge and neck pickups both have individual volume controls, the improve the tonal and dynamic versatility. A highly playable guitar, the Classic Vibe Jazz has a C shaped, bolt-on neck that perfectly complements the 21 narrow and tall frets.

  • Fender-designed Alnico single-coils
  • Classic Jazzmaster neck profile
  • Individual volume controls for neck & bridge pickups
  • Real bone nut for smooth tremolo
  • Prone to feedback when the gain is cranked on an amplifier

The Fender Jaguar has been on quite a journey since it was first introduced in 1962. The guitar's popularity gradually decreased, with it eventually being discontinued, only to re-emerge decades later with a new lease of life.

Squier's edition of this classic solid body electric guitar is a worthy competitor to Fender's offerings. Authentically styled to resemble the Jaguar as closely as possible, it offers a lightweight body with an offset-waist design and numerous other features.

The 24” scale is ideal for guitarists who frequently switch between rhythm and lead parts. This is furthered by the versatile tone produced by the 70’s Jaguar alnico single coil pickups, which promote thickness and power across the frequency range.

The Classic Vibe ‘70s Jag also houses a unique switching system that broadens the tone-producing ability of the guitar. You get complete control over the preset of two individual circuits, with tones ranging from snappy and sharp to warm and substantial.

  • Gloss-finished poplar body
  • Authentic floating tailpiece for added vibrato
  • Vintage 6-saddle bridge
  • Lead & rhythm based circuit controls
  • None

With the Classic Vibe '60s Mustang, Squier has extracted all of the best aspects of the renowned Fender original and added some of their interesting features. Lightweight and comfortable, the guitar benefits from an all-poplar body that produces plenty of resonance.

The maple neck of the '60s Mustang is smooth and C-shaped, making playing for long periods a breeze. Additionally, the Indian laurel fingerboard caters to complex chord sequences and decorative melodies.

A versatile guitar, the Squier Mustang is well suited to heavier styles of rock like grunge or punk music, but can also hold its own in softer styles like funk or R&B. With a pair of Alnico pickups designed by Fender themselves, there’s plenty of power in the midrange frequencies.

The original Mustang had distinctive features that separated it from the crowd of electric guitars produced at the time. Squier has included some of them, with chrome hardware, tuning machines that have white-tips, and the floating bridge with a dynamic vibrato tailpiece providing the sustain.

  • Classic Mustang mid-range bite
  • Ideal for heavy rock, grunge, or punk
  • Long sustain
  • Alnico single-coil pickups
  • Narrow frets may be an issue for large-handed players

The Affinity Series Tele allows guitarists to benefit from all of the well-documented Telecaster qualities without having to break the bank. The alder body is lightweight and produces ample resonance, similar to the original Fender version.

Telecasters are renowned for their “twangy” tone, which has been a staple of rock and other guitar-based genres since the ‘60s. With the Affinity series version, Squier has aimed to keep that Tele’ tone alive by using two single-coil pickups that bring out the bright, bold sound of the guitar.

Playability is also a reason that Telecasters continue to be amongst the best-selling electric guitars worldwide, and this is largely down to the unique fret design. 21 medium jumbo frets provide you with plenty of space to express luscious lead lines or intricate chord shapes.

The C-shape neck is made from smooth maple and is highly durable. There's also a maple fingerboard to make the guitar even more comfortable in your hands. As with all Telecaster models, the Squier Affinity version comes with a master tone and master volume knob for added flexibility.

  • Affordable alternative to a Fender Tele
  • Lightweight alder body
  • Tone & volume pots
  • Alnico single-coils produce classic Telecaster twang
  • Some users report the bridge pickup to be a little noisy

Fender-Inspired Squier Guitars – The Differences

The Fender Squier series has made some of the most iconic guitars available at affordable prices. You can find a Squier version of pretty much every Fender model, but choosing the right one for your needs can be tricky as they all share qualities.

Here’s a breakdown of the most popular Fender-inspired Squier guitars, and the main qualities they offer.

Stratocaster 

The Strat is an exceptional guitar that has been used by some of the most revered guitarists to ever play the instrument. It has been in constant production since 1954, and is known for its offset waist and contoured back.

The Strat sound is ideal for rock guitar. Hendrix used it to produce his signature “wailing” solos. Combined with a tube amplifier and a little distortion, the guitar produces an incredibly satisfying tone.

Telecaster 

As the first-ever solid-body guitar to be classed as commercially successful, Telecaster has coined a reputation as an innovative instrument.

Used by guitarists across a wide span of genres including rock, country, blues, folk, jazz, and indie, the Tele is considered to be one of Squier's most versatile offerings.

The “Telecaster twang” is a term often used to describe the guitar’s signature sound, which is produced largely due to the bridge pickup having more windings than the neck pickup. By switching between the two, the Tele produces distinctively different tones.

Jazzmaster

The Jazzmaster is another popular Fender-inspired Squier guitar. Originally marketed as a jazz guitar, it has been used across many genres for its exceptional sustain and warm, tremolo-rich tone.

Jaguar

The Fender Jaguar was initially deemed to be a failure, as its waning popularity caused the manufacturer to halt production in 1975. However, the Jag made a miraculous comeback in the late 80s and early 90s, when alt-rock guitarists rediscovered its powerful tone and smooth playability.

Closing Thoughts

Squier guitars have improved dramatically in recent years, with some guitarists even favoring them over their more expensive Fender counterparts. The quality of their components means they can now compete with the tones created by the original models.

There's plenty of variety available within Squier's selection of electric guitars. Some are best suited to entry-level guitarists who want to perfect the basics, while others are ideal for experienced musicians who want to get the legendary Fender tone and feel without having to spend a small fortune.

Ross McLeod

About Ross McLeod

Ross McLeod is a songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. His most recent project is named Gold Jacket, and he is the frontman and bassist of the garage rock band The Blue Dawns with whom he has released 4 EPs and toured extensively.

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