Squier has taken a turn for the traditional by unveiling the Affinity Series Jazzmaster – an entry-level offset that brings the oversized single-coil and tremolo setup to a beginner's electric guitar.
The Affinity Jazzmasters arrive in two of the finest finishes in the Fender catalogue, Burgundy Mist and Lake Placid Blue. While they do not have the arcane (and admittedly very cool) switching options of their Fender siblings, they nonetheless offer a more classic Jazzmaster experience at a very approachable price point.
This is an exciting development, in what has been a big week for Jazzmasters. Of the current Squier Jazzmaster range, the Affinity models were hitherto only available with dual-humbuckers and a hard-tail bridge.
Of course, for a few dollars more there was the Classic Vibe 60s Jazzmaster, or the J. Mascis Signature, but those are arguably just beyond the budgets of beginners.
Besides the single-coil pickup pairing and the modern 2-point tremolo bridge, the Affinity Series Jazzmaster has a poplar body, a bolt-on maple C profile neck and an Indian laurel fingerboard. There are die-cast tuners with split shafts and a synthetic bone nut.
With a 9.5" fingerboard radius, 21 medium-jumbo frets and a 25.5" scale, these Affinity Jazzmasters will have a contemporary Fender feel to them, which is to say they should be very accommodating to players of all abilities.
The Burgundy Mist model has a white pickguard and control knobs while the Lake Placid Blue comes with a black 'guard and matching knobs and pickup coverings. As with the HH model, the control circuit is simplified, with a three-way selector for choosing neck, bridge or both pickups, and master volume and tone controls.
These are not yet on the Fender website but they are available to order online, priced £239.