Fender vs Squier: what’s the difference?

Five Squier and Fender guitar models lined up next to each other
(Image credit: Future)

Fender and its sub-brand Squier are two of the biggest names in the world of guitar and bass. But what are the differences between the two? And which one is right for your setup and budget? Many of the guitars and basses produced by these two industry titans look the same, and in some cases actually sound very similar too. In this article we'll explain the differences between Squier and Fender, and how that can help you make a decision when buying a new instrument.

From Strats and Teles, to Precision basses, Jazzmasters and beyond, we’ll explore the differences in sound between Squier and Fender, the build quality and feel you get for your money, as well as the history of the two brands. Let's dive straight in with some history.

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Richard Blenkinsop

After spending a decade in music retail, I’m now a freelance writer for Guitar World, MusicRadar, Guitar Player and Reverb, specialising in electric and acoustic guitars, bass, and almost anything else you can make a tune with. When my head’s not buried in the best of modern and vintage gear, I run a small company helping musicians with songwriting, production and performance, and I play bass in an alt-rock band.