Not all beginners need a Les Paul or Stratocaster copy — a few desire something a bit different, a bit more tender, a little more… jazzy. And that is where this affordable Jazzmaster out of Fender’s subsidiary Squier comes from. While it is not specifically promoted as a guitar for beginners, the simplicity and playability of this Jazzmaster make it well worth exploring for anyone just starting out. Let’s take a closer look…
Body & Neck
There is something about the Jazzmaster that’s very relaxed. The overall style is incredibly appealing, using a solid alder body finished in glossy white and also a’68 Stratocaster headstock including some vintage to it. The iconic Jazzmaster/Jaguar shape in particular is a wonderful change from all of the Strats and Les Pauls you find at the beginner market, as it matches which distinctive asymmetrical body providing full access to all 22 frets of the rosewood fretboard.
This sits on a very comfortable one-piece bolt-on C shaped maple neck, and this can be satin-finished, very hardy and typical of all versions related to Fender. In reality, this is the prime reason why we pick this guitar on the chart of the best electric guitars for novices — the incredible playability. Beginners want a comfortable and glossy neck, and this Jazzmaster actually delivers.
Squier have removed the old switching system on this Jazzmaster version and stripped down things, meaning it is simple for beginners to get to grips with.
Elsewhere, Squier have opted to get a six-saddle hardtail bridge using this Jazzmaster instead of the classic tremolo bridge. Thus, what you lose in vibrato effects, the guitar constitutes in curbing stability. On this note, the headstock is fitted with a pair of nickel tuners, which can be nice to use — nothing special, but very acceptable.
If you understand anything about the Jazzmaster, then you might be expecting a mellow classic tone, ideal for surf-rock and similar genres. On the other hand, the 2 humbuckers are surprisingly sexy, so this seems better suited to heavier rock and metal — which seems a little strange with this particular model. Still, for beginners practicing and jamming, it’s not a bad thing in any way. They are rather clear and have a decent general output, though they may be well worth upgrading as you improve.
Squier’s cheap Affinity Jazzmaster is somewhat different to what you may have expected concerning hardware and tone, but it’s a major winner in our eyes. Additionally, it is very affordable, and looks and sounds fairly cool, which can be a good bonus!