Squier Bullet Stratocaster Reviews: Is It Worth Buying?

The Squier Bullet Stratocaster is an extremely affordable guitar that is ideal for beginners. But is the Squier Bullet Stratocaster worth buying in 2021? Let’s find out…


The Squier Bullet Stratocaster is not an expensive guitar. You can pick one up for around $140 in most places. Based on Fender’s iconic Stratocaster, the Squier Bullet Stratocaster is one of the most popular affordable guitars on the planet. And with good reason too. Squier is Fender’s affordable brand of guitars, so you get plenty of Fender-grade stuff just without the massive price tag.

Is it as good as a proper Fender Strat? Lord no. Not even close. But for a beginner guide, the Squier Bullet Stratocaster is a great place to start your journey. And, fun fact: Mike Rutherford of Genesis fame has been using a couple of Squier Bullet Stratocasters recently – apparently he just loves the way they play.

With all this in mind, let’s take a look at some reviews for the Squier Bullet Stratocaster to see what other critics made of it. After this, we’ll delve into whether or not the Squier Bullet Stratocaster is worth buying. Or, whether you’ll be better off with something else.

Squier Bullet Stratocaster Reviews


For a guitar that has been around for a while, Squier Bullet has been categorized in many ways, including its tone quality. For the most part, the guitar works great. It’s not the cleanest tone in the world, nor does it have the most range, but it works. In its price range, this Squier offers one of the most well-rounded sonic experiences you can find.

Guitar Fella

The Squier Bullet Stratocaster gives you a great bargain for its playability, appearance, and sound. And you will get great, easy playing experiences with some nice extras (like the tremolo bridge) to begin your musical journey. In summary, I can say the Squier Bullet Stratocaster was built with a single purpose: to be a beginner’s guitar. Its shortlist of limitations won’t be even important for a beginner guitar player, much less for children.

Beginner Guitar HQ

The Bullet is well designed with the beginner in mind. Super lightweight and featuring medium-jumbo frets, it’s a lovely guitar to learn on. You’ll need to replace the strings when your guitar arrives. It’s an unfortunate reality that the strings that come on beginner guitars are often pretty poor quality. A slightly annoying feature is the sharp fret edges. By no means is that a showstopper, but it’s something to watch.

Completely Guitars

What Pickups Does The Squier Bullet Stratocaster Use?

The Squier Bullet Stratocaster is designed as an entry-level guitar. You can use it to play live and record but there are some issues you should be aware of before buying one. It uses three Standard Single-Coil Strat Pickups (middle, neck, and bridge) which are pretty much par for the course with these models.

With tone and sound, these pickups are fine. But this is an affordable guitar, so you have to temper your expectations somewhat. Standard Single-Coil Strat pickups are sensitive, they tend to pick up lots of noise and buzz, and if you’re not great at string muting, this can be problematic. But you’ll run into this issue with most guitars are this price point, so it isn’t something we’d consider as a deal-breaker.

It sounds fine for the cost of the guitar, however, so do not be put off by this – these types of pickups are like that by nature. And battling with them will make you a better player. The Bullet Strat also has a 5-way switch too, so you can select each pickup individually or two at the same time which is great for dialing in different tones.

Here’s a quick overview of the Squier Bullet Strat’s 5-way switch and how it works:

  • Position 1: bridge pickup
  • Position 2: bridge and middle pickups
  • Position 3: middle pickup
  • Position 4: middle and neck pickups
  • Position 5: neck pickup

If you want to play metal and rock, pick up the Squier Bullet HSS instead – it runs humbucker pickups and is only slightly more expensive than this model.

The Bullet With Humbuckers!
Squier Bullet Stratocaster HSS
$209.99

This is the latest addition to the Squier Bullet family. It features everything a beginner player needs with the addition of a humbucker bridge pickup alongside two single-coil Stratocaster pickups which make it an ideal choice for anyone that wants to play hard rock and metal. 


Squier Bullet Stratocaster Sound

With overall tone, the Squier Bullet Stratocaster does lack the finesse you’ll find on more expensive guitars, it lacks some of the range you’ll find on $500 to $1000 guitars, and its clean tone isn’t all that clean. But for jamming and learning the basics, it sounds more than good enough.

And there is a workaround to fix some of its buzzing issues. The secret is to use a guitar pedal, rather than relying on your amp’s gain and distortion. If you want to play metal with the Squier Bullet Stratocaster, a decent distortion or fuzz pedal is essential. It will also help with the noise and buzz given off by its pickups too.

Does The Squier Bullet Stratocaster Hold Its Tune?

The Squier Bullet Stratocaster runs a die-cast tuner inspired by Fender Stratocaster’s original tuners. This is a slightly more complex tuner than you’ll find on other beginner guitars, but once you’ve gotten used to it works great and it does hold tune really well – better than some of my more expensive guitars, in fact.

In addition to this, the Squier Bullet Stratocaster also features a tremolo bridge which lets you use a whammy bar if that’s your thing. Again, absolute beginners can leave the tremolo bridge completely alone, if they wish, but it is there if you want to start messing around with things. Tremolo bridges aren’t exactly common on cheap guitars either, so this is a nice feature to have at your disposal.

Can You Modify The Squier Bullet Stratocaster?

One of the really cool things about the Squier Bullet Stratocaster, besides not costing much, is that you can modify it all you want. You can change the pickups, adding in a pair of cheap (or expensive) humbuckers, and this will fix nearly all of its tone and buzzing issues.

Or, you could just get the Squier Affinity model which comes with humbucker pickups. This is easily the cheapest option and it does go a long way to solving many of the issues present on the Bullet.

You can even change the tuner, although this probably isn’t worth doing. If you get this guitar and you really hate the sound, if you want to get a better sound out of it, the quickest way to do that is by switching out the pickups for some humbuckers – you can grab a decent pair for around $90.

But given the price of the guitar, spending nearly as much on a pair of pickups kind of defeats the point of the Squier Bullet Stratocaster – it’s designed to be cheap. If you want a guitar with humbuckers, I’d suggest you spend a little more and go with something from Ibanez – it makes brilliant affordable guitars that are great for metal and rock.

Squier Bullet Stratocaster Specifications

  • Tonewoods: basswood for the body, maple for the neck, rosewood for the fretboard
  • Neck: C-shaped neck
  • Scale: medium-scale guitar (25’5’’)
  • Fingerboard: 21 medium-jumbo frets, 9.5’’ fretboard radius
  • Pickup configuration: SSS
  • Controls: Master Volume, Tone 1 (neck pickup), and Tone 2 (middle pickup); plus a 5-way switch
  • Strings: Fender USA 250L Nickel Plated Steel

Is The Squier Bullet Stratocaster Worth It?

If you’re brand new to guitar and are looking for your first electric guitar, you really cannot go wrong with the Squier Bullet Stratocaster. It looks iconic, thanks to its Strat-styling. It plays beautifully, thanks to its C-shaped neck, and it sounds pretty decent for the money – even better if you add in some pedals or go directly into something like BIAS FX 2.

The Squier Bullet Stratocaster is lightweight, easy to play, and the neck is nice and thin, so it is ideal for users with smaller hands – like kids and teenagers – or anyone that struggles to learn on an acoustic. Available in a range of color options, the Squier Bullet Stratocaster is a brilliant guitar for anyone looking to develop as a guitarist.

And for $140, it is exceptionally affordable right now.

If you want to play metal and/or hard rock, I definitely think you’d be better off with the Squier Bullet Strat HSS; it runs a humbucker bridge pickup which you’ll need for hard rock and metal. It basically has everything the $140 Squier Bullet Strat has just with the added bonus of a humbucker in the bridge which makes it great for heavier stuff. My advice? Spend $60 more and get the Bullet Strat HSS – it is bloody brilliant.

The Bullet With Humbuckers!
Squier Bullet Stratocaster HSS
$209.99

This is the latest addition to the Squier Bullet family. It features everything a beginner player needs with the addition of a humbucker bridge pickup alongside two single-coil Stratocaster pickups which make it an ideal choice for anyone that wants to play hard rock and metal. 

Richard

Richard has been playing guitar for over a decade and is a huge fan of metal, doom, sludge, and rock music in general – though mostly metal. Having played in bands and worked in studios since the early 2000s, Richard is a massive music production geek, a fan of minimalist recording techniques, and he really likes old-school guitars.

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