Fender Modern Player Telecaster Review – How It Compares to Standard 

 February 14, 2022

By  Cynthia Swearingen

Fender guitars are esteemed for their stunning body, high quality finish, and cutting edge sound, all of which have been recently expanded with the addition of the Fender Modern Player Telecaster. This guitar features a sturdier body, a wide selection of modern finishes, three mismatched pickups, a five way switch and coil tap and more. All these characteristics makes it one of the most stylish yet versatile Fender guitars available.

In fact, it offers many updated features over the Standard Telecaster. It’s perfect for guitarists seeking a more versatile, modernized Fender instrument or the beginner who has yet to find their niche. Let’s find out more about its features and other characteristics that sets it apart from the Standard model.

Fender Modern Player Telecaster Features

Modern Player Telecaster

  • Solid body type;
  • Telecaster body shape;
  • 6 strings;
  • Polyester Gloss body finish;
  • 9.5″ radius fingerboard;
  • 22 jumbo frets;
  • 25.5″ scale length;
  • 1.650″ nut width.
  • Three pickups.
  • Mini-toggle rear coil switch.

Fender Modern Player Telecaster General Information


The Fender Modern Player Telecaster features a sturdy pine body with beautiful wood grain. This means that it is a bit heavier than the Standard Tele. However, it still contains the same comfortable body fitting contours and armrests for maximum comfort during hours of play. It also has a single cutaway for easy access to the upper frets.

Additionally, the Modern Player Tele is available in a wide variety of stunning finishes, including Honey Burst, Black, Transparent, Vintage White, Aged Cherry Burst, Blonde and more, for a more updated look.

Fender Modern Player Telecaster


The Fender Modern Player Telecaster features Fender’s vintage style neck and C profile, which many guitarists throughout the ages have come to love. In addition, it has a 9.5 radius lacquered maple fretboard with jumbo frets and Fender vintage tuners for ease of play.


One of the most unique features of the Fender Modern Player Telecaster is that its bridge is similar to a Strat. As opposed to the traditional standard design that typically holds at least one of the pickups, it now contains a humbucker at the bridge.

It also contains vintage style bent saddles as opposed to the more chic black saddles available on the Standard Tele. And, unlike the traditional elongated plate which surrounds the pickup on the Standard Tele, the Modern Player’s bridge plate is positioned back from the bridge pickup.


The Modern Player Tele features three different HSS pickups: a humbucker at the bridge, a single Strat pickup in the center, and a single pickup at the neck. They are connected to a set of standard tone and volume knobs, which offers tons of variability.


The Fender Modern Player Telecaster is highly favored for its wide range of tones, which is well capable of providing both clean and beat tones, as well as dirty tones due in part to the addition of the humbucker on the bridge. Or, you could simply enjoy Telecaster’s more traditional tone, via the single coils, by shutting off the humbucker.

Meanwhile, the middle Stratocaster pickup allows for that Jimi Hendrix/Stevie Ray Vaughn “twang” that more aggressive players appreciate.

The Modern Player Tele’s five way selector switch allows for easy shifting between the three pickups. This gives you more control over the sound. You can also choose between single or double humbucker channels to adjust the meatiness.

This new design expands the range of the guitar. It enables players to engage in a variety of genres, which they may otherwise not have been unable to with the Standard Tele.

Fender Modern Player Telecaster neck

How the Fender Modern Player Telecaster Compares to the Standard Model Telecaster

Sound Differences

The most obvious difference between the Fender Modern Player Tele and the Standard Tele is the addition of the humbucker on the bridge. It provides a glassier, heartier sound as compared to the Standard Tele’s single coil sound. This is especially true when paired with a high quality amp. However, the Modern Player’s tuning may not be as stable as the Standard Tele’s. This means it may need to be adjusted more often.

In addition, the bridge humbucker includes a split channel function. You can activate it via a toggle switch located between the tone and volume knobs. When activated, the split channel function gives the humbucker a brighter, narrower coil sound that differs from the standard coil output. The double coil produces a more hardier output.

Modern Player Tele and Standard Tele bridge
Fender Modern Player (up) vs. Standard bridge differences

Differences in Hardware

The three different HSS pickups on the Modern Player Tele also give it a greater span for genres than the Standard Tele. Furthermore, the inclusion of the Strat single coil in the center, allows for a uniquely sharp but smooth sound.

The addition of five position switching for the three pickups, as opposed the Standard Tele’s three position switching, also allows for a greater range of tones.

Differences in Playability

Another variation between the Modern Player Telecaster and the Standard Telecaster is the addition of jumbo frets as opposed to the Standard Tele’s medium jumbo frets, which is especially beneficial for soloists. Bulkier fret wires help ensure your finger is elevated high enough above the fretboard to avoid rubbing during your solo.

Differences in Durability

Lastly, the Modern Player Tele has a pine body as opposed to the softer alder body of the Standard Tele. It is more prone to dents, so it makes for a sturdier, more durable, long-lasting instrument.

Price Differences

The Modern Player and the Standard Tele also differ in price, with the cheapest being the Modern Player. The Modern Player Tele typically retails for about $300 to $500 at most major retailers, including Amazon, as compared to the Standard Tele, which typically retails for around $500 to $700 at most major retailers, which means the Modern Player Tele offers a much cheaper price than the Standard Tele and with more features.

Final Thoughts

With all of the features that the Fender Modern Player Telecaster has to offer, it’s not hard to see why it is adored by both beginners and experienced players alike. In fact, with the Modern Player Tele, all you need is one guitar. It’s just perfect for tonal experimentation. The price of the Modern Player also makes it an attractive choice; in many cases can be hundreds less than the Standard Tele.

Cynthia Swearingen

Your Signature

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  1. “Lastly, the Modern Player Tele has a pine body as opposed to the softer alder body of the Standard Tele. It is more prone to dents, so it makes for a sturdier, more durable, long-lasting instrument.” this don’t make no fuckin sense

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