For those of you that aren’t familiar with the Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster it is the top of the production line for the Fender Stratocaster. The American Deluxe Stratocaster is loaded with features that players have been customizing their Strats with for years. Fender has taken the best modifications and put them into production on the American Deluxe Stratocaster.
The Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster underwent some very nice upgrades for the 2010 model year with the two biggest upgrades being the pickups and the neck. For comparison sake you can read our page about the 2004-2009 Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster series. Gone are the Samarium Cobalt Noiseless Pickups and in their place are the new N3 Noiseless pickups. The N3 Noiseless pickups are a return to the classic Alnico magnet which has been used for years on the Fender Stratocaster. They are noiseless until you play a note and then they come to life in the most beautiful way!
Another huge addition to the 2010 American Deluxe Stratocaster is the compound radius freboard. Guitarists have been installing compound radius necks on their Stratocasters for years but it has been an after-market upgrade and you lose the Fender logo and Serial number. Fender has really done well with the compound radius fretboard on the American Deluxe Stratocaster. The neck is extremely smooth playing with easy chording in the lower fret range while being capable of huge, easy bends in the upper fret range. This is a very exciting feature on the American Deluxe Stratocaster. The neck also features the Micro-Tilt neck angle adjustment if you wish to experiment. The compound radius fretboard is found on both the C-neck and V-neck American Deluxe Stratocaster. The neck also features supremely comfortable rolled edges that are perfectly fitted to the edges of the frets. This gives the next a very smooth playing feel similar to a neck that has been played on and worn in over time.
A really big change for the 2010 American Deluxe Stratocaster is the re-wiring of the S1 switch. The S1 switch is a push-button cleverly hidden in the center of the volume knob. With a press of the S1 switch you now have access to 5 new pickup selection settings when using the blade pickup selector. Fender has made major changes to the 2010 American Deluxe Stratocaster S1 wiring. There are big tonal changes and the way the pickups are selected in relation to the blade selector position is different from the 2004-2009 American Deluxe Stratocaster series.
Here is the new wiring scheme for the S1 switch on the 2010 series American Deluxe Stratocaster:
5-Position Blade and 2-Position Push/Push S-1TM:
S-1 Switch Up (Off):
Position 1. Bridge Pickup
Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Parallel
Position 3. Middle Pickup
Position 4. Middle and Neck Pickup in Parallel
Position 5. Neck Pickup
S-1 Switch Down (On):
Position 1. Bridge, Middle and Neck Pickups in Series
Position 2. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Series
Position 3. Middle and Neck Pickup in Series
Position 4. Bridge and Neck Pickup Out-Of-Phase, and in Series with Special Tone Capacitor
Position 5. Bridge and Middle Pickup in Series and Out-Of-Phase, and in Parallel with Neck Pickup
As you can see the selection to have all 3 pickups on simultaneously is now in position 1 on the blade switch with the S-1 switch down. Whereas on the 2004-2009 series that combination was found in position 3 on the blade switch with the S-1 switch down. The tonal differences of the various S1 pickup selections are quite radical compared to the 2004-2009 series American Deluxe Stratocaster. This gives the 2010 series American Deluxe Stratocaster it’s own unique voice compared to other Stratocaster’s.
The last change to the 2010 series American Deluxe Stratocaster is the paint color and pickguard combinations. Fender changes up it’s color offerings every year to keep owner’s coming back for the color of Strat that they’ve been dreaming about. There are different finish and color options available on the American Deluxe Stratocaster, American Deluxe V-Neck Stratocaster, American Deluxe Ash Stratocaster and the American Deluxe HSS Stratocaster.
Other components on the Stratocaster remain the same such as the 2-point synchronized tremolo, staggered locking tuning machines, synthetic bone nut, pop-in tremolo arm, locking strap buttons and the contoured heel neck joint. I have to say I really like the contoured heel at the neck joint. It makes playing the higher frets extremely comfortable.
The Fender American Deluxe Stratocaster is available in both Alder and Ash body woods. The American Deluxe Ash Stratocaster is available in gorgeous transparent finishes that let you enjoy the beauty of the rich Ash wood grain. The 2010 series American Deluxe Stratocaster also comes with a very nice SKB full-size molded case to protect your instrument. It’s a much nicer and more heavy duty case than the guitar shaped ones that came with the 2004-2009 series. No matter which American Deluxe Strat you choose I think you’re going to be very happy with the 2010 upgrades.
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