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Squiers are actually good guitars. Even though they are made with cheaper materials than Fender, they are still good enough for you to gig. Even some professional guitarists use Squier to perform live.

Squier Vs Fender discussions have been going on for a long while and unfortunately Squier is sometimes viewed as bad just because they are cheaper than Fender (I was one of them).

However, after owning both a Squier and Fender, I can tell you a Squier guitar is actually pretty good. I sometimes even prefer it more than the Fender (more on this later).

In this article, I am going to discuss Squier guitar in more detail. Why are they cheaper than Fender and are they actually good enough for you? 

Here’s the upcoming content in this article:

  1. Why Are Squiers Cheaper?
  2. Are Squiers Good Or Bad? 
  3. Can You Gig With A Squier?
  4. Professionals Who Use Squier
  5. Conclusion

3 Reasons Why Squiers Are Cheaper Than Fender

1. Cheaper material

Squier guitars are made from cheaper materials than Fender guitars. This means components like body, pickup, nut, tuner and finish are inferior.

Resulting in lower sound quality and less durable guitar but of course, cheaper price. 

Don’t get me wrong Squier guitars are still built well. It’s just not as premium and long lasting as Fender guitars.

Also, Squier guitars are not as full sounding as Fender guitars (especially at the high frequencies). However, if you really care about sound, you should invest more money in a better amp instead. 

A Squier guitar with a good amp is always better than an expensive Fender with a bad amp. So again, I don’t think cheaper material is a big problem. Your amp and technique matters more. 

Related article: Does Guitar Amp Matter: Will Upgrading Make Any Difference?


2. Manufactured in the East

Squier guitars are generally manufactured in countries like China, Indonesia or Korea – where labor is cheaper. Thus, resulting in cheaper priced guitars. 

On the other hand, Fender guitars are manufactured in countries like the USA or Mexico – where labor is more expensive but it’s more consistent and has better quality assurance. 

I  personally think this is not a big deal but not everybody thinks the same as me. Just by having the label ‘Made in USA’, your Fender guitar will hold its resale value much better than a Squier guitar. 

That said, I have owned my Squier for close to 5 years now and haven’t had any problems. It still plays well with good maintenance and regular fret dressing.  

Related article: Guitar Refret: When, How Often & How To Know (Is It Worth It)


3. Branding

Squier guitars are not branded as a premium guitar brand like Fender. Instead, it’s branded towards the budget brand – suitable for beginners or simply, the wider global market.

This is another reason why Squier guitars cannot be as expensive as Fender. Both brands (Fender and Squier) are owned by the same company – Fender for the premium market and Squier for the budget market. 

So, just because Squier is much cheaper, doesn’t mean it plays much worse and is low quality. I recommend you give Squier a try with a good amp – you will appreciate it much more (especially with the price).

Are Squiers Good Or Bad? 

Squier guitars are good guitars. They are a cheaper option (when compared to Fender) but they still sound good and built well. If you care about sound, focus on getting a good amp first.

The number one reason which makes Squier much cheaper than Fender is the labor and manufacturing cost. 

By having Squiers manufactured in Indonesia or China where the currency rate is extremely low, they are able to produce guitars at much lower cost. 

If you are worried about the sound or playability of Squier guitars, don’t be. I personally own one and I have nothing to complain about.

I sometimes prefer my Squier over my Fender because I don’t have to baby it. Squier is not that expensive and I am not worried about getting it dirty or roughed up a little. 

I even encourage roughing it a little – to get that aged, relic look.

Reliced Squier

A reliced Squier

Can You Gig With A Squier?

You can definitely gig with a Squier guitar – given that you have a good amp. Audience usually won’t notice the sound difference and is not bothered about the guitar brands. 

My advice is if it sounds good enough for you, then it’s good enough for the audience. Remember, most of your gig audience are not familiar with guitars – they just enjoy good music. 

I have seen many guitarists who gig with Squier. Usually, they have a spare Squier with different tunings, so they can easily swap. The Squier can be used as a backup guitar as well. 

That said, if you only have a Squier and need to gig, then absolutely go for it. There are professionals and even legends who use Squier to perform live.

3 Professionals Who Use Squier

Here are 3 professionals / legends who used Squier to perform live. If they are comfortable enough to perform with Squier, why not you?


1. Jeff Healey

Jeff Healey is the late Canadian Blues, Rock and Jazz guitarist. At one point, he even reached the top 5 in US top 100 Billboard. And yes, he rocked a Squier guitar on stage. Check it out. 

Jeff Healey With Squier

Jeff Healey With Squier

2. Jack Pearson

Jack Pearson is the guitarist from “The Allman Brother Band”. They play mostly rock and have been in the top 100 list a couple of times. Here’s Jack Pearson with a Squier on stage.

Jack Peason Squier

Jack Peason with Squier


3. Chuck Prophet

Chuck Prophet is another rock guitarist and singer who used to rock with Squier guitar on stage. Throughout his career, he has played solo and with a band called “Green on Red”.

Chuck Prophet With Squier

Chuck Prophet With Squier


If you don’t have the budget for the premium brands like Fender, then getting a Squier is a great option.

The guitars are great. They are made from slightly cheaper materials but can still sound good – given a good amp and technique.

Personally,  for the best value, I suggest getting a Squier and then save up another $100 – $200 to improve its components:

  1. Upgrade to bone nut
  2. Adjust for lower action
  3. Adjust neck relief to be neutral (to avoid string buzz)
  4. Upgrade pickup
  5. Go for a fret dress (if needed)

By doing the above, you are going to make your Squier guitar sound much better – where it can even be compared to the likes of Fender.

Related article: 

That said, the most important component is always the amp or amp modeler. You need to get the amp right, before you should even worry about your guitar. 

If you decide to get a Squier, I recommend you to have fun with it! Don’t baby it, let it age and give it some scratches to make it look aged and relic (personal preference, of course).

Ifandi S.

About Ifandi S.

Ifandi started Strumming Bars to answer all the questions of a guitarist. As a self-learned guitarist, he remembered how frustrating it was to not find answers to his many questions in the journey. With Strumming Bars, that's no longer the case!

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