Im bumping this.
I just sold my Lakland 5502 with no binding. Really liked that neck a lot. Played a Lakland Joe Osbourne and a Sadowksy Metro. Both had binding. Wow, do I hate those necks. I know a lot of people like them here, so offense. They felt sticky and slow to me. Now this could have been the strings..who knows. But the setups seemed pretty solid to me.
I played a 2012 MIA Fender Deluxe V. It had binding..much nicer neck than the others, but still not quite there. Then I played an 09 Deluxe. Maple neck, no binding. Perfection. Just absolutely wonderful. Do all the new fender deluxes have binding? I will probably buy a used one if that is the case, because to me, it makes a difference. It was interesting reading through this thread, as I thought I was crazy for noticing the difference, and being way too picky, but it seems a few others see it the same way.