Fender Jimmy Vaughan Tex-Mex Stratocaster Reviews 4

I acquired this instrument by going down to my local 8th Street music store in Philly and asking "hey, you got any Jimmy Vaughan Tex-Mex's?" Thankfully, after a few minutes (and much rooting around in the stockroom) they produced one! I played it through a few Fender amps they had sitting around, and 10 minutes later I said I would take it! I bought it because it has all the features that I like (I'm a blues guy and it's a bluesy guitar), it's a great guitar (the best of Fender's Mexican guitars) and it was within my price range (about $550.00 with tax).

First of all, it's a Strat. I'm a firm believer that the reason Fender sells so many guitars is because they're the best value for your money, and this guitar is no exception. All the parts are better quality than the norm at its price point. It even comes with strap-locks! It's a Jimmy Vaughan signature model too, so it has his signature on teh back of the headstock. If anybody ever holds a gun to your head and tells you to prove you're a blues fan and you have the guitar handy, you can show them the signature. The BEST part about this guitar is the bridge pickup. There's a reason the guitar comes with a jalapeno-sticker on the pickguard, it's HOT. Hook it up to any good amp and it wails. Plus, when you push the pickup selector to the fifth choice (as close to the neck as itll go), and you play it up high you get Humbucking sound! It looks great. Olympic-white isn't nearly as whimpy looking a color as the name implies. The neck isn't the paltry white-tan color you see on most of the lower end Fender models, but a nice healthy gold color. Coupled with the off-white body and shiny metal parts, it's stunning. It plays very well; great action. I like my action super-low, and this unit was rather accomodating ;).

The guitar is white, which makes it VERY hard to keep clean. The amp-cord jack is always coming loose. There's a nut that tightens the jack to the metal pice that holds it in place, but it's always un-tightening no matter how many times I tighten it. It's very easy to tighten the nut, though. And there have also been a few problems with the 'vintage' tuning machines, that being sometimes when tuning the strings detune within a few seconds about 1/8 of a step. But I've only run into the problem a few times, it may not even be a problem with the machines.

It's constructed pretty well. I noticed that the cuts aren't as smooth in the neck to permit the frets to be placed in. It's not a problem at all, the frets are all even and feel fine, but if you really look at it the wood looks just a *tiny* bit frayed, compared to American strats. You don't notice unless you're looking for it. There are a few annoyances with the tuning machines and cord jack, which I have described before. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the straightness, action, intonation of the neck, nor with the pickups or sound or electronics. All the stuff that really matters is fine, and surpasses my expectations for a guitar at this price point by far.

The guitar is a great value for $550.00. Hot pickups, humbucking sound, great action and a gorgeous look make this a great guitar.

Ping Pong Phil rated this unit 4 on 2001-12-17.

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