Squier, is it Fender?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SpankBass, Jan 9, 2003.

  1. A friend of mine insists that the Squier is just another part of Fender, like MIM and MIAs, but from what I've gathered from this site, they are not actually made by Fender, but licensed or something by them and they are made by Affinity and the likes.

    Can anyone help me out here?
  2. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Squier is a Fender owned and managed brand, manufactured in South Asia, in factories managed by Fender.

    Hence, a Fender is a Fender, whether it says ´Squier or not....
  3. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Yes, when Fender started the Squier line - some of the instruments were better than a lot of the Fenders around!! ;)
  4. goran


    Dec 17, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: Bartolini
    Squier is just licensed product, like Epiphone is to Gibson. I owned a japanese Squier Precision and I was quite satisfied with it at the time. It looks almoust identical to older Fender P-basses but it is NOT the same thing.

    There you go...
  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I think the older Squiers were made in the same Japanese factories that Fender used for Fenders? And now you can pick up old Squiers that are as good as some "Fenders"!
  6. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Some very early Squires were made in the USA!!!!

    To say a Squire can't be as good as a Fender is silly. I've played way too many Fender's & alot of them have been total dogs!!!!!
  7. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta / Macon (sigh)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Here's the deal: Fender started Squier because everyone was ripping off their designs, which Leo failed to patent, and they decided that they may as well make some of this money that was being spent on Fender knock offs. They felt that people would be more willing to buy a Fender knock off made by Fender than from some other company. Gibson followed suit with Epiphone. Squiers are not licensed by Fender, they are Fenders, just under another name and made in another country. Leo did, BTW, patent the headstock.
  8. jcadmus


    Apr 2, 2000
    No, that's not quite right. It wasn't a question of patents -- Leo did patent many of his designs. But copy makers were able to come close enough to sell product, but different enough to not violate the patent -- and outside the U.S. those distinctions only needed to be minute.

    It's the same as with "IBM-compatible" PCs back in the '80s and early '90s.

    When this started to seriously eat into Fender's market share, Fender responded by creating the Squier brand.

    With the Squier brand, Fender basically said, "Alright, some people want to buy cheap copies of our products -- well, we'll make some too and tap that low end of the market. And We can do it better, because we know the products inside and out, plus we can put our name on the product, making people think their buying a 'real' Fender."

    And the situation with Gibson and Epiphone is also a little different.
    While Epi models are essentially low-end Gibson clones today, that was not always the case. When Gibson bought it in the 1960s, Epiphone was a separate company with its own distinct brand and guitar models. Shortly after the acquisition, however, Gibson started creating dual models of guitars and basses in the Gibson and Epiphone brands -- kind of like, there are Fords and Mercurys, but beyond the nameplate they're virtually identical.

    It was later that they evolved the products so that Gibson was the premier brand and Epiphone was the budget brand.
  9. TRU


    Apr 12, 2002
    Northern Europe
    I've got one of those Japanese Squiers from ~'82. It is as good as Jazz basses are at their best. The original electronics suck and the tuners are now in need of replacement or at least some cleaning up.