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USED Fender 50th Anniversary Deluxe HSS Stratocaster 2004 w/Original Hard Case

2004 was the 50th anniversary of the introduction of the Fender Stratocaster, and even the most casual of music fans recognize the shape of the Fender Strat. And it's amazing how something approaching almost 60 years old still looks modern today. This is an excellent condition 50th anniversary Fat Strat -- not to be confused with the 50th Anniversary American Deluxe model -- with all paperwork and original molded hardshell case.

This USA Fat Strat features:

  • Ash body with Sienna Sunburst finish, 8.6 pounds
  • Gloss finish maple neck with rosewood fretboard
  • 9.5" radius, 1-11/16 nut width
  • Micro tilt 4-bolt neck with 50th anniversary neck plate
  • 22 frets
  • Top adjust truss rod
  • Fender single coil neck and middle pickups (~6.5K ohms)
  • DH-1 humbucker bridge pickup
  • 5-way pickup switch
  • S-1 switching system
  • Pearl pickguard and cream pickguard included
  • All paperwork and trem bar
  • Original molded hardshell case

This is not the official 50th anniversary model, but being made in that year, it is still graced with the 50th anniversary nameplate. It also has the micro-tilt adjustment, but four bolts instead of older three bolt setup. Thankfully it also has a top adjust truss rod, and we appreciate Fender not going traditional on this model and putting the adjustment where you can't get at it.

Wound slightly hotter than traditional vintage pickups the neck and middle pickups lack a bit of the high end glassiness you get from a vintage single coil, but as a trade-off they have more midrange beef and fullness. For most players -- and in band settings -- this is a welcome feature that helps the guitar punch through the mix. While the humbucker pickup does impact the Strat's traditional aesthetic, it's an absolute improvement in terms of versatility and rock-readiness. With a DC resistance of under 9K it's mild by humbucker standards but adds meaningful fullness and girth to the bridge position. It's a superior configuration that expands the musical territory of the guitar.

The S-1 switching system (the little push button in the top of the volume control) was introduced in 2003 and it's functionality has been tweaked over the years (see photo for 2004 switching options). Depending on your point of view it's brilliant or a bit of marketing flash. With the button in the up position it's the standard 5-way settings, and when depressed it's a bunch of series/parallel configurations that are hard to remember but do sound different. Some of the series settings have the benefit of fattening up the tone, which can be handy for heavier styles of music and driving pedals. Ultimately it's a matter of taste, and it's worth remembering the original Strat had only a three-way switch. More is better, usually. 

If you like history and the marking of eras, this is an excellent example of 50 years of Strat development with virtually no wear and tear. It's ready for the next 50.