Boutique guitar maker Fano announced new models at NAMM 2017. At one end of their range, Fano are introducing the Alt De Facto ‘Builders Choice’ series of high-end, bespoke models. At the other, the lower-priced Standard Series will be expanded with the addition of the new RB6 and TC6 models.
This is essentially the Fano equivalent of the Fender Custom Master Built Series, a new series of ‘one-offs’ and limited runs that will be available to dealers from this year. Of course, this means we could be in for some really interesting guitars that will probably cost a small fortune. However, Fano guitars are a boutique brand and that kind of price tag goes with the territory.
All the Fano models I have played have been really great instruments. I like their styling, and each one is hand-built in America. To expect them to be cheap would be foolish, especially with the current worldwide financial shift that threatens to make everything from that side of the Atlantic to cost even more than ever before over here in the UK.
But putting the price issue to one side for a moment, these look like they could be a lot of fun to play. But Fano is also expanding their Standard Ranges to incorporate more models at a reduced cost.
Fano Standard Series 2017
In 2016, Fano came up with the Standard Series. The range included three models, two versions of the JP6 and one type of SP6 that essentially came in a limited range of colours with simple hardware options. No bespoke one-offs or oddball colour schemes here. These instruments don’t take as long to build, making them cheaper to the consumer than the Alt de Facto instruments.
The obvious move was to expand the Standard Series – and that is exactly what Fano are doing in 2017. UK players can expect the new models to start appearing over here this year. They will include the new RB6 and TC6 in eight new colours including Shoreline Gold, Candy Apple Red and Sonic Blue. All made in the USA, and by the same guys that build the Alt De Facto models. You can get the Standards in NOS (New Old Stock) with no real ageing, or the more typical light distressing, which is how they came last year.
This expanded range will be welcomed by many players, as the instruments are proving to be one of the better ’boutique’ guitar brands of recent years. I look forward to experiencing the full Standard range over the course of 2017. If they are significantly cheaper then the Alt De Facto Series, these could make a great alternative to a Fender or a Gibson US-made instrument.
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