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Fender Player Series, are they worth it?

Fender Player Series, are they worth it?  ·  Source: Fender

Fender has added new Stratocaster, Telecaster, Jazz Bass, and Precision Bass Player Plus models to their lineup, with new colours, a 12″ radius fretboard with rolled edges and a new range of Fender’s Noiseless pickups. Has Fender hit the mark here? 

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Fender Player Plus

These new Fender Player Plus models are available in some, ahem, interesting new colour schemes, many of which are a little too gaudy for my tastes. But Fender has also tweaked the specifications. Buyers of the Player Plus range get rolled fretboard edges, a 12″ radius and another new variation on the Noiseless pickup range. But does it all add up for to a price point around €1000?

Fender Player Series

Fender Player Series adds new colours and ‘enhanced specifications’, but are they worth the price tag?

Player Plus Stratocaster

First off, the Strat: the Player Plus Stratocaster has a two-point vibrato and three Player Plus Noiseless single-coils, and the Modern C-shaped neck with a 12″ radius and rolled edges. There’s also a push-pull tone pot, so you can add the neck pickup to positions one and two. Finishes available include Three-Colour Sunburst, Olympic Pearl, Aged Candy Apple Red, Tequila Sunrise, or Opal Spark.

RRP – USD 999 or €949

Player Plus Stratocaster HSS

This model is the same specification as above, but you also get a Player Plus humbucker that you can split with the push-pull tone control. The colour options for the HSS are Three-Colour Sunburst, Belair Blue, Cosmic Jade and Silverburst.

RRP – USD 1029 or €969

Player Plus Telecaster

This Player Plus Telecaster comes with a pair of Player Plus Noiseless single-coils, with a push-pull tone pot that allows them to be run in series or in parallel. The bridge is a six-saddle Telecaster hardtail with block steel saddles. You can get this one in Three-Colour Sunburst, Cosmic Jade, Silver Smoke, and Aged Candy Apple Red finish options.

RRP – USD 999 or €949 

Player Plus Nashville Telecaster

Basically this is a Telecaster with middle pickup. The Player Plus Nashville has the same specifications as the regular Telecaster, just with the extra Strat-like positions on offer. The same push-pull tone control here works as it does on the Player Plus Stratocaster above.

This version comes in Three-Colour Sunburst, Butterscotch Blonde, Opal Spark, and Aged Candy Apple Red.

RRP – USD 1029 or €969

Player Plus Active Precision Bass

This one has a Player Plus PJ pickup set, with a Jazz Bass single-coil in the bridge and a split P-Bass pickup in the middle position, with a three-band active EQ that is switchable between active and passive modes. You also get a Fender HiMass bass bridge with this model and it comes in Silver Smoke, Cosmic Jade, Three-Colour Sunburst, or Olympic Pearl finishes.

RRP – USD 1049 or €1089

Player Plus Active Jazz Bass/Jazz Bass V

Two, Player Plus Jazz Bass models are on offer, with a pair of Noiseless Jazz Bass single-coil pickups and, like the P-Bass above you get a three-band EQ.

The four-string Jazz bass comes finished in either Three-Colour Sunburst, Olympic Pearl, Belair Blue, and  Aged Candy Apple Red. And the Jazz Bass V comes in Three-Colour Sunburst, Cosmic Jade, Opal Spark, or Tequila Sunrise.

RRP- USD 1099 or €1089 and USD 1149 or €1169 for the V

Fender Player Series Precision Bass

Fender Player Series Precision Bass

Are they value for money?

The range is made in Mexico and all the models are clustered around the €1000 price point. It isn’t exactly the cheapest Fender range of guitars and basses in recent years. I’m not won over by any the specifications on offer here, as they are all pretty standard compared to other brands. But if you want a modern Fender and you dig these finishes, they could be perfect for you.

Fender Player Series

Fender Player Series

TikTok

Fender has a new TikTok channel, hosting artists like Blu DeTiger, Hannah Dasher, Gabriel Garzón-Montano, The Destroy Boys and Nova Twins, who will be showcasing these new instruments on there. It’s great to see a wider, more diverse range of players given the spotlight. It all looks nice and pretty and there are a few interesting new colours on offer. But I still think the price is a bit too high for what you’re getting. The specifications are in line with what other brands have been doing for years. Are you willing to pay more just to have “Fender” on the headstock? Or are there better-priced options with good specs elsewhere? Let us know your thoughts in the section below.

More Information about Fender Player Plus

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by Jef
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4 responses to “Fender Player Plus Stratocaster, Telecaster and Basses: Are they worth their price?”

  1. eat yr Ghost says:

    In a world where Gibson routinely charge $1,500-$3,000 for yet another boring Les Paul in the same boring finishes with the same features, sub-$1,200 Fender guitars really can’t be considered expensive.

    I really, really like the silver smoke finish on the Tele and the Bel Air Blue on the Strat. Nice to see them playing around with the colour palettes a little more this go around.

    • Jef says:

      I have to disagree, as these are their more affordable Mexican-made models, which have crept up in price an awful lot in recent years. They aren’t comparable to made in the USA Gibson models really.

  2. Gee Paul says:

    love how the “lesser” models keep getting upgrades from the American lines. That 12″ fretboard radius is great! Plus the 2 point tremolo is a big step up (looks like a new american strat from 2000-10′)

  3. SA says:

    I do like the specs overall, but for the price, I’d have to be in love with the pickups to justify that cost…seems unlikely from what I’ve heard from Fender lately. And still the bulky neck joint?

    Honestly, I’m way more excited about the super cheap new Ibanez AZES line! Haha Inexpensive guitars are great these days.

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