Squier Affinity Series Telecaster (SS) GEARANK 91 out of 100.

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BEST BUDGET TELECASTER

Squier Affinity Series Telecaster (SS)

GEARANK:   91 out of 100. Incorporating 1650+ ratings and reviews.

Street Price: $200

Manufacturer: Fender

 

The Telecaster is the guitar that effectively started the solid-body electric guitar revolution.

During the 1930s and 1940s several companies tried to produce a solid-body electric but none of them were commercially successful. Then Leo Fender released his design in 1950 with a single pickup under the name Esquire, then added a second pickup and sold it under the name Broadcaster but soon had to change it due to a lawsuit from Gretsch who were already selling a drum kit using that name. Thus the “Tele” as we know it today was born.

Its popularity continues and as of today the Squier Affinity Series Telecaster is the highest rated solid-body electric guitar that sells for less than $200.

Specifications:
  • Body: Alder
  • Finish: Lake Placid Blue / Polyurethane (pictured), also comes in Brown Sunburst, Gun Metal Gray, 2-Color Sunburst, Black and Arctic White
  • Bridge: 6-Saddle Top-Load Tele
  • Pickups: 2 x Vintage-Style Single-Coil Tele
  • Neck: Maple
  • Scale Length: 25.5″ (648 mm)
  • Fingerboard: Rosewood
  • Fingerboard Radius: 9.5″ (241 mm)
  • Number of Frets: 21
  • Nut Width: 1.6” (40.6 mm)
  • Controls: Master Volume, Master Tone
  • Pickup Selector: 3-Position Blade: Position 1. Bridge Pickup, Position 2. Bridge and Neck Pickups, Position 3. Neck Pickup
Pros

It’s hard to overstate how well liked this version of the Tele is by people who have bought and played it – something which is evidenced by its very high Gearank score. Most commendations point to its playability, tone and overall build quality.

Cons

For something that’s continues to sell well, there are relatively very few complaints. Most of which are from people who encountered setup and cosmetic issues out of the box.

Overall

You can’t go far wrong with the highest rated guitar under $200.

$199.99 at Amazon

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10 thoughts on “Squier Affinity Series Telecaster (SS) GEARANK 91 out of 100.”

  1. Hey there! This looks like an awesome guitar. A friend of mine was just talking about how they needed a new guitar. I will definitely be forwarding this to them so that they can find one on your site. Thanks so much for sharing and I hope that you help others find awesome guitars. 

    Take care, 

    Marlinda 

  2. Great article! Very straightforward and to the point! I’ve been playing acoustic guitar for years, and I’ve tried to play electric but the chord progressions for most songs just feel so different. I do really like the shape and look of the guitar, so I’ve been thinking about getting an electric just to play around with, and for the price point \, this might just be it! Do you know if there are any comparable bases for this price?

    1. Thanks for your generous review. Yes, you can try Sweetwater, Musician’s Friend, and Guitar Center to compare prices. I favor Amazon as I have years of positive experience with them.

  3. Great article Wiliam! I like to play guitar especially for birthdays and celebrations. I found this topic to be very helpful because I did not know where to look for quality guitar. Telecaster is awesome and I will for sure buy one because my sister birthday is close and I want to play it. It is not expensive at all.

  4. I have played Telecasters before and really like the way they sound. The price of the Squier models are very appealing to me, but in my experience, I’ve found that the sound they produce isn’t as full as the more expensive models. In your experience, do you know of an amp that pairs well with the Squier Tele, or do you have any tips that would get a sound out of it that compares to the more expensive ones?

    1. Thanks for your review and question. Do you mean more expensive Telecasters, or other more expensive guitars? If you mean other Telecasters, I would start with the pickups. I don’t know if Fender uses the same pickups in the Squiers as it does in the American Tele’s. I doubt it, but I don’t know. It would change the pricing. Changing out the pickups for better quality/higher output ones can do wonders. Fender also makes other models of Tele pickups, like the Texas Specials and pickups from the Custom Shop. Hope this helps. You can probably find out online. A Tele with good pickups will sound great clean through almost any amp. The body and neck would is the same, so the pickups are the important variable. I put Texas Specials in another of my Tele’s and it rips.

      1. Yes, I was referring to more expensive Telecasters. Very helpful. I actually didn’t realize they were basically built with the same materials. Thanks for the info!

        1. You’re welcome. The differences between the least and most expensive Tele’s is the finish, the hardware (pickups, tuners, bridge) and accessories. The tone woods and neck are both the same. Fortunately, Tele’s are easy to work on and you make ongoing projects out of them. Bridges are easy to swap out and there are a lot of good aftermarket bridges available. I bought a set of GraphTech bridge saddles that made a big difference in tonal clarity and sustain. You can also give some thought to replacing the nut..!

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