American Standard Stratocasters herald from the Fender factory in Corona located in California. Originally called American Standard until around the year 2000, they then underwent some changes and were marketed as American Series Stratocasters. This year, 2008 some further changes were introduced and this particular stratocaster reverted back to the American Standard name. This label identifies them as the regular standard Fender offering of the Strat model.
Essentially, they are all the same, identical except for the selected color. The American Standard will say Made In USA right upon the front of the headstock. A typical street value for this make of guitar as a ballpark figure would be around a thousand dollars new. For used prices you can expect to pay in the region of $600 to $950, depending on factors such as age or condition, this would be for a 1990’s to the current year model. If we go further back in time then you can expect to pay more than that. For a fact, if it’s a 1950’s or 1960’s model and isn’t a reissue, then you can expect to pay in the region of $25,000 to $35,000.
However here, we are going to be giving a little bit of guidance for the former models, the 90’s to the current year.
The serial number for the American Standard Series Stratocasters will be found on the rear of the headstock. If from the 1990’s this serial number will start with Nx, the 2000’s serial numbers will start with Zx, the ‘x’ equates to the last number of the model year.. For example a serial number which starts with ‘N3’ will be a 1993 model and Z3 will signify that it is a 2003 model. The serial numbers of both will have additional 5-6 digits, shown here, again by way of example; N3255748 or Z3622711. For clarity purposes, sometimes production years will carry forwards into the next year so it is altogether possible to get an American Standard Stratocaster indicating a year other that the actual year in which it was produced and made.
The regular American Standard Series Stratocaster will come with 3 high quality single coil pickups made with alnico magnets, or to be even more specific alnico 5, this is one of the key differences over the lower priced non USA models. The six pole pieces on each pickup, one for each string, are the actual magnets. Upon the cheaper single coil pickups, the pole pieces will be steel and the actual magnets themselves will consist of ceramic bars (ferrite) running along the bottom of the pickups, this is standard on most of the Squier and Mexican models. The alnico magnets are usually the one’s to have if you really do want that all important vintage Fender Stratocaster sound.