Fender American Professional II Telecaster & Stratocaster HSS review

Barely four years ago, Fender introduced the American Professional line – now it’s been refreshed. We investigate what’s changed…

Fender American Professional II Telecaster & Stratocaster HSS
(Image: © Future / Neil Godwin)

Guitar World Verdict

A modest refresh for the Am Pro line, but nonetheless well judged, and these remain high-performance options that are priced fairly for your average jobbing guitarist. The Tele remains a great workhorse while the Strat is very difficult to put down.


  • +

    The subtle changes make a noticeable difference.

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    Very neat new bridge.

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    Tele's push-push switch series pickup link is very welcome.

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    A great middle-ground Telecaster.

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    Strat has a superb neck feel and setup.

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    Excellent musical tools with relatively modern voicings.


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    Notching those Tele saddles wouldn’t go amiss.

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    Not everyone will get the roasted pine’s appearance.

You can trust Guitar World Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing guitar products so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Time flies and it only seems like yesterday we were writing about the new American Professional guitars, a reimagined overhaul of the previous long-running American Standard that produced some of the best playing and sounding Fender electric guitars – which we’d not hesitate to recommend to readers and friends alike. 

In some ways, then, it’s a bit of a surprise that Fender has now replaced that line with these Mk II versions. If you’re expecting a completely new operating system, you’ll be disappointed: the American Professional II is more like a firmware upgrade. 

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Dave Burrluck
Gear Reviews Editor, Guitarist

Dave Burrluck is one of the world’s most experienced guitar journalists, who started writing back in the '80s for International Musician and Recording World, co-founded The Guitar Magazine and has been the Gear Reviews Editor of Guitarist magazine for the past two decades. Along the way, Dave has been the sole author of The PRS Guitar Book and The Player's Guide to Guitar Maintenance as well as contributing to numerous other books on the electric guitar. Dave is an active gigging and recording musician and still finds time to make, repair and mod guitars, not least for Guitarist’s The Mod Squad.