Squier Thinline Tele HH
This isn't the first time those Fender boffins have meddled with the original Telecaster design. When Fender was sold to CBS in the mid-1960s, strange variants of Leo's original Telecaster began to appear.
First it was a range of unique finishes (the paisley and blueflower 'wallpaper' guitars), then it stretched to the addition of Bigsby vibratos.
Fender wanted to make a Telecaster to suit every player, regardless of taste in music. It is an ethos that continues to this day, which is why there are so many hybrids of the Telecaster currently available.
In the early 1970s, Fender really shocked the purists with their first twin humbucker-equipped Telecaster.
The guitar, called the Deluxe, wasn't a big hit with guitarists at the time but has since become a favourite with skinny blokes in Brit rock bands (Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand has got one). And the Deluxe just so happens to be the grandaddy of our Squier Thinline HH…
The Thinline HH is part of the new Master Series range, a much higher specification guitar than the entry-level electrics Squier has become known for.
You're getting a bound, solid alder body, a maple neck and a tasty looking rosewood fingerboard loaded with 22 jumbo frets and large pearloid dot inlays.
Add to that a pair of Duncan Designed humbuckers and some rather tasty chrome hardware, and you've got a guitar that more than justifies its price tag.
Thinline is the name given to Fender's semi-hollow Telecaster. The solid centre block with a hollow chamber under the f-hole does make the guitar a bit lighter, but let's not kid ourselves. The real reason we like this guitar is because it looks so damn cool.
It's not just the twin Duncan Designed humbucking pickups that sets this guitar apart from the rest of the Telecaster range. Instead of the usual Fender bolt-on neck system, this Thinline HH's neck is glued in.
Old Leo Fender probably wouldn't have approved, bless him, because he designed the bolt-on setup so that a neck could be easily replaced if worn or broken.
The Thinline HH may be a bold break with tradition, but we really like it. It gives this guitar a great rock vibe, like a cool old Gibson Les Paul Junior.
The neck on this guitar is very slim – we normally like to slap a bit more beef in our palms, so imagine our surprise when we couldn't get enough of the Thinline HH.
The action on this particular example is very low and the strings are light and easy to bend. This all adds up to an effortless playing experience and should make this guitar popular among shredders or any players with small hands.
It kicks ass! The Thinline HH is a killer rock and metal guitar and the bridge Duncan Designed Humbucker is a real Jekyll and Hyde character.
It's restrained and jangle-friendly when played clean; whack up the overdrive though and it turns into a right filthy bastard with screaming harmonics and chunky bottom end.
It's a superb pickup for punk powerchords – think Iggy and the Stooges or The Hives – but it will handle metal just as easily.
The versatility is further enhanced with a tasty neck humbucker. Together with the bridge unit, or on its own, it adds some warmth to both clean and overdrive tones.
Good?! It's bloody great! Ever since this guitar arrived in the TG office everyone has demanded some time alone with it. That doesn't happen very often.
The Thinline HH may be a bit of a Frankenstein's monster in some players' eyes, but its unique combination of classic Telecaster looks, humbucker power and great playability really struck a chord with us. We'll take it!
Looks great. Sounds awesome. Plays like a dream.
Telecaster traditionalists probably won't approve.
A fabulous guitar. Check it out!
All MusicRadar's reviews are by independent product specialists, who are not aligned to any gear manufacturer or retailer. Our experts also write for renowned magazines such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Computer Music, Future Music and Rhythm. All are part of Future PLC, the biggest publisher of music making magazines in the world.
2 x Tone 2 x Volume 3-way Pickup Selector
Black Natural/Crimson Transparent.
Six Saddle Bridge
Country of Origin
Guitar Body Material
White Dot Position Inlays
Machine Heads Material
No. of Frets
2x Duncan Designed humbuckers.