It’s not easy to review a Fender Stratocaster and not use the word “iconic.” I am going to repeat myself as I review another Fender Strat, the “iconic” electric guitar. Yes, this is a later model, an evolution. If you are interested in one of the later incarnations of the Fender Strat, then look no further than the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster.
Table of contents
- Fender American Ultra Stratocaster Review
Fender American Ultra Stratocaster Review
This iconic electric guitar is the epitome of precision and craftsmanship, designed to retain all that made the Fender Stratocaster a great electric guitar but add some additional refinements.
This guitar offers unparalleled comfort and easy access to all frets, featuring a contoured body and smooth-playing maple neck. The Ultra Noiseless pickups deliver an incredibly versatile tone, allowing you to shift between genres and styles effortlessly.
From the enhanced neck heel for easy access to the upper frets to the S-1 switch for that extra dose of tonal versatility, the American Ultra Stratocaster has it all.
Body and neck construction
The Fender American Ultra Stratocaster has some nice new features that set it apart from earlier Stratocasters. With no further ado, let’s take a closer look at what makes this guitar special.
Body and neck
The American Ultra Stratocaster boasts a sleek contoured body made from high-quality alder or ash, depending on the finish you prefer.
This ergonomic design still ensures comfort, the same level as the earlier Stratocasters, which is still a plus if you play long sessions.
The smooth-playing maple neck with a modern “D” shape profile adds to the overall comfort and playability of the guitar.
It also features a nice satin finish on the back, making gliding your hand up and down the neck easier.
The neck heel of the American Ultra Stratocaster has been redesigned for enhanced upper fret access. This means you can easily reach those high notes and perform intricate solos. If you are someone who doesn’t go right up the neck when playing, you’re unlikely to notice that small change.
Furthermore, the sculpted rear body contour adds to the comfort factor, hugging your body nicely, standing up or sitting down.
Electronics and pickups
The Fender American Ultra Stratocaster is equipped with the revolutionary Ultra Noiseless pickups. These pickups deliver a pristine, noise-free tone without sacrificing the classic Stratocaster sound.
Whether you’re playing clean or cranking up the gain, the Ultra Noiseless pickups will faithfully reproduce every nuance of your playing.
But the versatility doesn’t end there. The S-1 switch, located on the volume knob, offers even more tonal options.
Engaging the S-1 switch gives you access to series wiring, which provides a thicker, more powerful tone.
Advanced playability features
I think it’s fair to say the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster is designed with the modern guitarist in mind. It features a 10″–14″ compound radius fingerboard, which means the fretboard gradually flattens from lower to higher frets.
It’s comfortable when grabbing chords and makes for effortless bending in the lower register while still allowing for low action and easy string bending in the upper register. The rolled fingerboard edges add to the overall comfort, reducing any discomfort that may arise from extended playing sessions.
Versatility and tonal options
One of the standout features of the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster is its versatility. This guitar can handle it all; it’s great for playing blues, rock, jazz, or even metal. The combination of the Ultra Noiseless pickups and the S-1 switch allows you to dial in a wide range of tones, from sparkling cleans to gritty overdrives.
The five-way pickup selector switch provides even more tonal options, allowing you to choose between the neck, neck and middle, middle, middle and bridge, or bridge pickup.
Finishes and aesthetics
In addition to its impressive performance features, the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster also offers a range of stunning finishes to suit your personal style.
There are some nice options colorwise, from classic colors like Arctic Pearl and Black to eye-catching options like Ultraburst and Plasma Red Burst. The guitar is also still adorned with elegant chrome hardware.
The finishes are meticulously applied, showcasing the natural beauty of the wood grain and giving each guitar a unique look.
The American Ultra Stratocaster still has the same sleek and modern design that pays homage to its iconic heritage. The body shape, pickguard, and headstock are instantly recognizable, making it a true statement piece on any stage. The fact is they are unlikely to fix something that ain’t broken.
Electronics and pickups
The Fender American Ultra Stratocaster is a true masterpiece, combining precision, comfort, and versatility in one instrument. With its contoured body, smooth-playing neck, noiseless pickups, and advanced playability features, this guitar is a dream come true for any guitarist.
Whether you’re a professional musician looking to upgrade your gear or an enthusiast seeking a top-tier instrument, the American Ultra Stratocaster is a worthy investment.
So why settle for anything less when you can have precision at your fingertips? Upgrade to the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster and unlock a world of limitless possibilities for your music.
Whether you’re playing in the studio, on stage, or in the comfort of your own home, this guitar will inspire you to reach new heights and explore new musical territories. Experience the ultimate in craftsmanship and performance with the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster.
Alder or Ash
The body of the American Ultra Stratocaster is crafted from alder or ash, depending on the finish you choose. Alder offers a balanced tone with a slight emphasis on the midrange frequencies, making it ideal for a wide range of musical styles.
On the other hand, Ash provides a brighter tone with enhanced sustain, perfect for players who want their notes to ring out.
Versatility and tonal options
The standout features of the Fender American Ultra Stratocaster is its electronics and pickups. The Ultra Noiseless pickups are the result of years of research and development, and they deliver an incredibly versatile tone.
These pickups eliminate the hum and noise that can often be a nuisance, allowing your playing to shine through with clarity and precision.
The American Ultra Stratocaster features Three Ultra Noiseless Vintage Strat single-coil pickups, giving you a wide range of tonal options.
The two single-coil pickups in the neck and middle positions offer the classic Stratocaster twang, ideal for clean and bluesy tones. With this pickup configuration, you can effortlessly shift between genres and styles, making the American Ultra Stratocaster a truly versatile instrument.
With a flick of the switch, you can activate different pickup combinations, expanding your sonic palette and giving you even more versatility on stage or in the studio.
The American Ultra Stratocaster also features elegant appointments, such as pearloid dot inlays and a 4-ply tortoiseshell pickguard. These details add to the overall aesthetic appeal of the guitar, making it a true work of art that you’ll be proud to showcase on stage or in your collection.
Comparison to other Fender Stratocaster models
Meanwhile, Fender still offers a wide range of great Stratocaster models with some differences, mainly the pickups. However, the American Ultra Stratocaster’s new, advanced features and premium craftsmanship make it stand out.
Compared to the American Professional II and American Original ’60s Stratocaster models, the American Ultra Stratocaster offers enhanced playability features (minor but nice), noiseless pickups, and additional tonal options.
These upgrades will make the American Ultra Stratocaster a serious contender if you think about a new Stratocaster.
Conclusion and Our Final Thoughts
With so many Fender Stratocaster models available, it’s important to understand how the American Ultra Stratocaster stacks up against the competition.
While other models like the American Professional and American Original offer their own unique features and tonal characteristics, the American Ultra Stratocaster takes things to a whole new level.
The Ultra Noiseless pickups, enhanced neck heel, and S-1 switch are just a few of the features that set the American Ultra Stratocaster apart.
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