Fender Modern Player Telecaster Plus has the Sounds!
When I picked up this 2011 Honeyburst Fender Modern Player Telecaster Plus, it’s only flaw was that it had been loved a little bit too much. It spent its former life at church with a minister in the Sunday school. I didn’t ask him, but it’s condition was of a community guitar. Really dirty/dead strings, a volume knob that needed to be re-glued, bumps and bruises let me to believe it was passed around a bit. On the bright side, it was set up and played well so I was excited to have this 7 pound, 11 ounce baby around.
Swiss army knife of tones…
If you are looking for a very versatile guitar, this thing is for you. I can see it being great for the guy in the cover band that needs 3 or 4 different guitars on stage but wants to capture it all in one. It’ll do the heavy, distorted bridge humbucker thing. It’ll do the 3 single coil Strat thing. It can sound kind of like a Tele…it’ll at least look like a Tele. And it looks more expensive than it is. At $500 new it’s less expensive than Mexican made Telecasters, but just a little more than the nicer Squier guitars.
To me it is jack of all trades, master of none. Even when you split the humbucker, it won’t be angled and won’t sound quite the same as a Telecaster or Stratocaster. It’s kind of disappointing that there is no option for neck/bridge pickup combination like you expect with a Tele. The sound of the pickups are all kind of meh. Nothing really stood out to me and I really hate the plastic, chrome plated humbucker mounting ring. I think black would look much better.
Great platform guitar…
But with that said, this thing is a beast and could be a great platform guitar. There is a huge opportunity to upgrade the pickups to sound like you want it to sound. I think the only other modification I would make is to replace the pickguard with a white pickguard. Don’t get me wrong, I love black pickguards. They are my favorite! But in this case, I don’t think it works with the honeyburst. Switch it up to white and you’ll pull out those oranges and get that creamsicle flavor from your guitar. Also it sets you apart from the thousands of these Fender is selling.
My final verdict
This is a great guitar with a range of tonal options. It covers pretty much any guitar style out there, but I think it will excel at country rock, Americana, folk rock, or anything within the spectrum of country and rock.
It’s well made and beautiful. I love the amber tinted vintage style neck. There is something about the glossiness that makes it feel expensive and well made. If I had to play it every day, I would make some improvements, but it starts with good bones you can gig with on day one.
At $500 new or $300-400 used, this guitar is a heck of a value. My only reason for selling it is because I don’t gig on guitar and I can stock my studio with 3 or 4 different guitars that do everything this guitar does but better…but I expect that my overall investment will be 3-5 times what I get for this guitar.
Fender Modern Player Telecaster Plus Features
- Pine body, solid wood
- Gloss Polyester finish on the body and neck
- Neck: Vintage amber tint, Maple C standard, maple fretboard
- Scale length: 25.5″
- Nut Width: 1.650″ (42 mm)
- String Nut: Synthetic Bone
- Vintage Kluson style tuners
- Truss rod: Standard
- Neck pickup: Modern Player single-coil Telecaster
- Middle pickup: Modern Player Stratocaster
- Bridge pickup: Modern Player humbucker
- Five-way pickup blade switch
- 1: Bridge Pickup
- 2: Bridge and Middle Pickup
- 3: Middle Pickup
- 4: Middle and Neck Pickup
- 5: Neck Pickup
- Mini-toggle coil-split switch for bridge pickup
- Vintage-style string-through-body Stratocaster hard-tail bridge
- Black 3 ply pickguard
- Made in China