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Fender American Special Stratocaster - Candy Apple Red Reviews

5.0 stars based on 12 customer reviews
  • from Cen. Ca. November 4, 2015

    GREAT GUITAR

    I am a better guitar player because of this AMERICAN SPECIAL STRAT. Plays like a guitar that costs two or three times as much. My first SWEETWATER purchase and I cannot think of one bad thing to say about the guitar or SWEETWATER.

  • from Phoenix, Arizona September 8, 2015Music Background:
    Played guitar since 1969

    Great sounding and looking guitar American Special Candy Apple Strat

    As an owner of eight American Standard Fender Tele's and Strats I was a little skeptical of the American Special series. Not any more. My candy apple red beauty took all my doubts away. Hooked it up to my Blues Jr. Fender amp and it was like they were made for each other. I am very proud of this guitar. My sales engineer, Justin Sunday, went above and beyond the call of duty for me. He was very courteous and knowledgeable. He gained my respect. Sweetwater is where I'll go for my next guitar.

  • from Erie,PA. November 10, 2014Music Background:
    I have playing guitar for over 50 years.So I guess that makes me a pro.

    What a sweet guitar !!!

    This is the best guitar you can buy for the price. This sounds as sweet as any deluxe I've ever played and didn't break the bank doing it. Then the finish is out of this world. The candy apple red is something special. I've always wanted a real nice candy apple red and Fender is all I play. This one is the answer. Then there is Sweetwater nobody like them. It's too bad they haven't been around for the past 50+ years for me to buy all of my accessories. Linsey Becker is just a champ she treats me as if I'm her only client. Thank You, Linsey.

  • from United States July 21, 2014Music Background:
    Original Artist, Pro Touring Musician

    Fende American Special Strat in Candy Apple Red

    I have owned a truck load of Stratocasters during the last 42 years. I also owned a boutique guitar store so I've owned a bunch. This in short, is one of the best I've ever pickup up to play. Excellent price point too.Great job Fender

  • from South Carolina, USA June 25, 2013Music Background:
    Church Praise Band Guitarist

    Great Looking, Great Sounding & Affordable American-Made Strat

    Just received my Fender American Special Strat (Candy Apple Red) from Sweetwater and I have to say I really love this guitar.

    Although there was nothing wrong with the tuners I decided to swap the stock tuners out with some locking Fender tuners but other than that the guitar was sounds really great right out of the box and this was just a personal preference for me.

    The Sweetwater setup is great and really is reason enough to persuade me to purchase all of my online guitars here in the future. Even though I can setup a Strat myself it is great to have the guitar arrive already playable with no buzzing frets, etc., so only a few minor tweaks have to be made.

    The only con that I can point out is that the gig bag that comes with the guitar is quite flimsy. I understand that Fender had to do this to cut some costs to make this guitar more affordable and I certainly don't blame them for that. If you don't have an extra hardshell case just plan on budgeting for one so you can keep this beauty in the best possible shape.

    I personally like the 70s style headstock on this guitar since it is quite different from my other strats and I really like the sound of this guitar. It is definately a keeper so if you're in the market for a great American-made strat and are on a budget this is really a great guitar and with Sweetwater's great customer service you can't go wrong.

  • from Waynesburg Pa. June 5, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyist , Play the bars on weekends.

    Fender American Special Strat (CAR)

    I already owned the other two American Special Strats with maple necks so I guessed I might as well finish the trio. My wife is actually the one who liked this color I figure it will grow on me , The guitar arrived the next day , was set up perfect and played great right out of the box, I pulled the trem down flat tuned a half step down and played the heck out of it for an hour. Once again my thanks go out to the Sweetwater staff , you are the best and we love to do business with you. Keep up the great work. I would recommend this guitar to anyone in the market for a new guitar.

  • from Utah May 5, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyist

    Best guitar i've owned!!!!

    Everybody says best for the money, but would put this guitar up
    with any of my other guitars, some much more expensive.
    The tone is solid and versatile. The neck is smooth, and with the
    jumbo frets its a ease to play.
    The sweet candy apple red is just a beautiful plus on top of all else.
    This guitar is definitely a keeper!!!!

  • from Waynesburg Pa March 24, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyist play the bars on weekends

    Fender American Special Stratocaster (2-Tone Sunburst)

    What a great guitar for the price, With money being tight for most of us these days I must say it was a treat to find that Fender has given us something to feel better about . The guitar that I picked out looked very nice , I had worries that the materials used in this series would be less than good .Plays great sounds great feels nice and looks like a top notch instrument. I would highly recommend this guitar to anybody in the market .If you are like me it may take a few jam sessions to get the amp and guitar tones dialed in , the texas special pickups sound great clean and gritty but it took me a few days to get that heavier sound I wanted. The best thing about this purchase was the people at Sweetwater, it was a surprise to find that they actually set their guitars up before they ship them mine arrived set up perfect right out of the box. A quick tune of the strings and I put it through its paces.I am waiting for the HSS 3-tone Sunburst to get in stock so I can buy one of them as well.My thanks to the staff at Sweetwater I think that I have found my new guitar shop and will do the bulk of my business with them .

  • from Georgia February 8, 2013Music Background:
    Active musician

    Great guitar

    Checked around for a couple of months on where to purchase this strat. I have been a Sweetwater customer for a number of years and still find after checking out other sites, Sweetwater continues to provide excellent service, free speedy shipping and the best price around. Their customer service cannot be beat. As far as the guitar goes, it's an American Strat...

  • from sydney nsw australia March 13, 2011Music Background:
    aspiring pro muso after i complete my 1st big home recording project, fairly advanced hobbyist, songwriter etc

    MAGNIFICENT & CAN PLAY BY ITSELF!

    My C.A.R American Special is so magnificent it plays by itself.
    aint touched my mexican made roadhouse or sky blue standard with gold lace sensor neck & middle pups and red lace sensor @ bridge & TBX pot nor my satch 1990 japanese built ibanez or SG since i got it.

    bend up as far as you like and have no apprehension of string-snap. fastest best neck ever.Plays anything from blues country rock metal from lovely & rapturous enchantingly sweet tones to rougher than a rolling fight to the finish over gravel. plug it into anything, a hot rod, a marshall stack, a g-dec 3, a roland cube, a line 6 spider jam etc etc & have supreme confidence of perfect playability.

    This guitar has a work ethic for tough time$ as money gets tighter than a mouse's ear with superglue in it. dont be a never-do-well. Surely it'll be money well spent if ya's invest in it.

    i think i'll name it "Tommy" after Pete Townshend's Pinball Wiz.as it plays by intuition too:-)

  • from tx February 15, 2013Music Background:
    Been playing for over 40 yerars

    Beautiful Guitar

    This is a berautiful guitar, received in perfect condition. Love the neck action and TX special pick-ups. Would highly recommend this guitar to anyone who is looking for a good all around guitar, fun to play and beutiful sound quality.

  • from Seattle, Wa USA January 22, 2013Music Background:
    Hobbyst/Student

    Candy American Special Strat

    Love the throaty Texas Special pickups, without effects I get that SRV sound off my AC 30. The neck takes a bit to get used to, play a lot on my Tele and HSS Strat with the normal fret and neck size. Can hear a real difference in the sustain, most likely do to neck and headstock. It stays in tune really great, even after playing with the trem bar. Need to restring, I like the sound of elixir's and most likley stay with the .009's (light's). Yes, this guitar neck is made to bend notes, and with those pickups, the blues are better!
    Only thing that did upset me is that there are 2 dust specks on the neck behind the 3rd fret, for the money you'd think the QC was better on the American Strat, my HSS is a Mexi and no flaws. You just feel them but in no way does it effect the playability. (thus only 4.5) For your money you can't find a better American made guitar!
    Last of all my buddy who is a pro-musician, was very impressed, he couldn't believe the price, and I had to pry it away from him. He plays on an older custom shop Strat and really been playing as a pro for 40 years, that says it all for me!

Reviews

  • Mitch Gallagher
    8-26-2011

    "Built by the people, for the people & within your reach" is the slogan on Fender's website describing the new American Special line of guitars and basses. And it's an apt descriptor: the new instruments are made in the USA and come in at stellar prices. I had the chance to check out five instruments: a Telecaster, a Stratocaster, a Stratocaster HSS (with a humbucker at the bridge), a Jazz Bass, and a Precision Bass.

    All five instruments were top notch. They were solidly constructed, well set up right out of the box, and primed for making music. I ran them through a Fender Mustang III amplifier (see sidebar for more on this amp). Each one produced the tone I've come to expect from a high-quality Fender instrument, from the twang of the Tele to the quack of the Strat in the in-between position to the crunch of the HSS humbucker to the rolling thunder of the two basses.

    We're talking classic good looks combined with classic tones. Each of the instruments rang well, with plenty of sustain. The pickups were solid, offering full, rich tones. And the hardware was of the quality you'd expect from an American-made guitar or bass. These were U.S.-made Fenders all the way.

    How much did I like the American Specials? Well, I ended up spending my hard-earned dollars to buy the Precision Bass for myself, and I couldn't be happier. It plays great, it's light, it rings like a bell, it sustains well, and the tone is true P Bass all the way. The same can be said for the whole American Special family; they all deliver the real thing at a great price, and they're made in America - very nice!
    BONUS: Mustang III
    I had the opportunity to play the American Special guitars through the new Mustang III amplifier. This is a pretty amazing piece of work from Fender: 100 watts, 12" speaker, built-in effects, and excellent-sounding amp models of all types. Whether for home practice -- yes, it sounds great at very low volume levels despite the high power rating -- rehearsal, studio work, or live performance, there's a ton of tone in this lightweight, highly affordable amp. It's the first Mustang I've played through, and I'm sure it won't be the last -- Mustangs rock!

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