My Squier VM Precision Bass TB has been my main player for about a decade now. I love that bass, and always wondered how it held up to the original vintage fender telebasses. Well, today I got to find out! I popped into guitar center today and they had one up on the top row of the bass wall. A ‘73 telecaster bass in Mocha brown. I played it through a rumble 500, same amp I use at home, to try to compare tones as fairly as possible. I gotta say, I was underwhelmed. I get why people dog on these old basses, it was pretty muddy (AND DIDNT EVEN HAVE FLATS ON! ) My squier has much more p bass growling mids, and to me, more clarity. The fit and finish of the ‘73 pretty good. After the horror stories I’ve heard about 70’s Fenders, this one seems to be a good one. Felt really similar to the ‘84 peavey foundation I had once (in quality, not dimensions). The one thing I did notice was how thin the body was. My Squier’s body is 1.65” thick, and I always considered it thin, but this one was visibly thinner still just by eyeballing it. Biggest takeaways: tone - ‘73 Fender was muddier, Body - ‘73 fender was thinner, neck - ‘73 has thick gloss poly (VM has thin satin poly), hardware - ‘73 has 3 bolt w/ microtilt, bridge cover, & bullet truss rod. All in all, it was a cool bass but I wouldn’t put down the $995 they’re asking for it, and I’m very happy I have my VM TB...I do wish it was that mocha brown though.