Fender Lite Ash Stratocaster

Electric 6-String Guitar

Made by Fender

Description A Fender Strat made of swamp ash with a clear finish and a beautiful birdseye maple neck, stock with 3 Seymour Duncan Alnico Pro II staggered pole piece single coils.
Posted By Kenny Barker (55)
Directory Equipment: Guitars
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Overall Rating: 5.0 (of 5)
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Member Reviews


On 2/9/2008, Albert Wesker (144) posted:
Overall Rating:
Great Fender. For those light on the pocket (and perhaps muscle mass :D) this is for you.
I personally like a guitar to weight as Strats do but this is pretty light for those that don't. I dig it anyways.

Unless you don't like them I'd sugest getting it in "Natural" to show the beauty of the Ash coupled with the Birdseye Maple fingerboard. Mmmmm it looks real boutique.
Hey I play Metal and various other styles too but I prefere natural finishes. I don't imagine it'd look good in sunburst, nor do they do it in that.

Just...read the review if you will. :)
Model Year: 2004
Where Obtained: Local shop
Features:
As the name says, it's made of light Ash. Mine is in the Natural finish, costs a bit more (for some reason) but looks the biz with the Birdseye Maple fingerboard.

This model has 3 Seymour Duncan pickups . [Which are "APS-1N, APS-1RWRP, APS-1B, (Neck/Middle/Bridge) (APS=Alnico Pro Staggered)"] But I put a HotRail in the Bridge for use in heavy playing.

Trem is a 2 point Synchronised system, good for tradish trem play such as dips and slight up bends but for abuse, it's no Floyd and that's how I like it as I'm not too skilled with top Whammy action.

Not much else to say here cause other than that it has all of your Strat features with the usual controls etc so I'll leave this section there. :)
Playability:
Well for s start the Lite Ash will benefit those who deem a guitar "Too heavy"...well try playing a 6-string bass if you want to feel heavy. :D To me, this guitar can feel too light to begin with but that's it's manufactored feature, I jus though it was a nice guitar.

Again, I don't use low action so I dunno how it fares there, takes ages to get my action so I'm not gonna try sorry. :(
My action is "How I like it" and changes with each guitar until it feels nice. I like to play music naturally, not "by the book" as music doesn't have one. :)
I float the Bridge too cause it plays better that way and you can bend up a semi-tone / tone too.

I can't find any flaws. The usual Fender deadspot does occur in certain frets towards the high end on the lower strings. Remember my action isn't low so I still to this day don't get this phenominon.
Sound Quality:
Well it comes loaded with Seymours so you can expect as such. I put a HotRail in the bridge tho.
Obviously it's a Fender so it sounds pretty good, what with the resonance from the top electronics cavity (ye jus gonna love that doncha?) it sounds as a Strat does and the light weight doens't make it sound empty or hollow like some others.

Being single coils you will get hum of course in single possitions. A HotRail or other hum canceling pickup will help rid of that and for the price it's worth it (you are modding a Fender afterall remember).
I bought a Squier too because I don't want this stolen but then that sounds pretty good too (read my other review) so I won't compare them as there's no need.
Let's just say it's a good Strat for the price AND a Fender too, just not a big boy one (but who cares about that).
Durability:
Strong. Like Carbon Fibre it's light but durable.
No probs as of yet and all controls / tuner heads are strong.
Fenders are renowned for bouncing off of walls, floors, stages & peoples head etc but I won't try that.
On 12/18/2004, Kenny Barker (55) posted:
Overall Rating:
I know I gave this guitar a great review, but thats exactly what it is - a great guitar.

It handles all the blues, jazz, rock, and even hard rock I throw at it with no problems at all. I can't even say that about my Clapton signature strat. Sure, it has its bells & whistles but it does not feel as solid as this instrument, and I payed alot more for that one than this one.

The only thing this guitar would not do is the extremely heavy hardcore stuff. But it handles even heavy rock well because of the hot pickups. It sounds warm in all aspects, and it is a real treat to play. I have removed the tremelo and blocked the bridge because I dont like them or use them.

I have found a guitar that I can say for sure I will always own. It really is mindblowing that it was built in Korea. This guitar sounds better than my American deluxe, and it is more solid than my Clapton signature. And it is everything I wished my Robert Cray strat would be (medium jumbo frets, great sounds/feel/construction & more than enough sustain)

If you are thinking of getting a strat, give this one a try. Forget for a moment the origin of manufacture and play it. You will see what I am getting at. I am selling my Robert Cray strat this weekend and another friend is going to buy my deluxe (he says) when he gets paid.

If my clapton strat did not get me the few extra sounds that it does it wopuld probably go, too. That and the fact I probably won't get near as much as I payed for it. I ordered it thinking it would be flawless because of the model it is, but I was dissappointed. I kept it because it does sound great, but it was not finished with much care at all - if any. I would have sent it back but with the sorry construction I was afraid I might actually recieve one that didnt sound/play as well - as opposed to what I had - one that did not look well. This lite ash strat had no imperfections at all, not in the frets, birdseye neck, wiring inside, abalone dots, solid tuners, pickups that scream blues with no effort, joints and all around construction.

The best guitar purchase I have made in a long time.
Model Year: 2004
Price: $600.00 (new)
Where Obtained: Counts Bros. Music, Muscle Shoals, Alabama
Features:
This is a new Korean made Strat, right on par with alot of American made models, and better than quite a few American models as well. I have had it 3 months, so I figure I know it well enough for a review. It has a beautiful birdseye maple neck with alot of swirley patterns, and abalone inlays that "change color" depending on the angle you view it from. 22 medium jumbo frets 1 volume, 2 tone controls 3 single coils Seymour Duncan Alnico Pro II Natural finish on the swamp ash body classic strat shape 2 point floating tremelo The only thing I wish it had were a tone knob for just the bridge pickup added with the other 2 tone controls....but I wish every strat had that. It would make a very versatile guitar even more versatile.
Playability:
I have 3 other strats. A MIA deluxe, Clapton signature, and MIM Robert Cray signature. This lite ash strat is a real treat to play. The neck is so smooth it feels like butter. The frets were well dressed and smooth, the floating trem actually held the tune very well (before I blocked it, Im not a trem guy), and the pickups sound great. It is not a super-fast speed metal neck, it has a little contour and beefiness to it. But since it is so smooth, you can rip it up pretty fast if you have it in you. You do not have to fight it to play it like you sometimes do with strats, it is very smooth & playable. And with the great sounds produced, that just makes me want to play it longer every time i consider putting it down.
Sound Quality:
The pickups are hotter than stock fender single coils. They definately have a bark & bite that standard single coils won't do. Don't get me wrong, I love strats thats why i have 4, but its nice to have something a little hotter than normal, without being humbuckers. I knew from the moment I plugged this guitar in it was going to be special to me. Its just a combination of sounds, feel, and playability combined with flawless construction and well-worked craftsmanship. Through my hotrod deluxe i get the spanky cleans that Strats are loved for. pushing the gain I get what you'd expect with Seymour Duncan alnico pickups - but with a little more bark which i love. Swamp ash is sort of a "nutrual" wood, so its very transparent which is a great thing if you are using good pickups. If I had to describe the flavor of the wood, I would say its glassy and bell-like, that combined with the fact that it does not really color your sound - it just lets the sustain producing wood work its magic with the pickups & amp, very nice if like letting every nuance shine through. So its best described as glassy, snappy and full of sustain. The 2 pickups together (bridge & middle or neck & middle) have more of the glassy quality than my other 3 strats.