I recently ordered a Squire Affinity PJ series because, after watching several videos, I really like what the Affinity series has become - the tone is great for the price, especially from the PJ model. Also, I must admit, a bit of nostalgia factored in: when I was 16, my first bass ever was a candy apple red PJ. I have no problem playing a Squire. I believe the painter and his work are what matter. The brand of the brush is trivial. Anyway, the bass sat on backorder for two weeks before it shipped. I am a patient man - that is fine. Unfortunately, when I got home from work and unboxed it yesterday, I was very disappointed. The bass was what I would classify as severely damaged. Both volume knobs were jammed into the body of the guitar. The pickguard was pretty much shattered, with multiple cracks all the way from the input jack to the pickups. The tone knob had been broken off. I had to search through the packaging to find the tone knob, which had ended up in the bottom of the box. One thing that concerns me is that I think this may have happened during packing. You would expect cracks and jammed knobs to be shipping damage, but he box itself shows very little wear. Regardless, MF is sending another with 2 day air so I can use it at our show Thursday. It's not a big deal. I have much nicer name brand basses (Warwick, G&L, etc.) that I could use at the show. I am a laid back guy, so I don't get stressed out about these things. But I have to wonder... Is this common at this price level? Do sub $200 instruments even get inspected? The packing was just sad. One cardboard box and the bass was wrapped in a thin layer of foam and tape. Also, if the second one shows up busted, would any of you even bother ordering a third?