For those looking at the Yngwie Malmsteen scalloped Fender guitar, this post is for you.
Yngwie Malmsteen’s revolutionary guitar style—combining elements of classical music with the speed and volume of heavy metal—made him a staple of the 80s rock scene.
Decades later, Yngwie (pronounced Ingvay) is still a legend among guitarists, having sold 11 million albums and influenced generations of rockers since.
I have always been an Ibanez guitar player, been playing guitar on and off for about 20 years. Paul Gilbert, Steve Vai, George Lynch and of course Yngwie Malmsteen are some of my favorite guitar players. I toyed with the idea of getting a fender stratocaster guitar for years but never did due to the price, lack of locking trem (I’m a whammy user / abuser) and lack of saturated tone due to no humbucking pickups. Humbucker pickups give a thicker fuller sound and are used mainly for METAL, which is what I play.
So why did I get this Yngwie Malmsteen Fender guitar you ask? I have been eyeing it for sometime and curiosity finally got the best of me. I never played the Yngwie Fender guitars before ordering so I just had reviews to go on. They are not found in stores and if you do come across one, it’s a rare find.
I had no idea what the fretboard, or lack of, with the scallops, would feel like. Someone somewhere said you will either love this Malmsteen guitar or hate it due to the scalloped fretboard. They compared it to “playing on trapeze wire.” That made sense to me since you would only be feeling strings and nothing else beneath your fingers.
I’m not a fan of fat / thick guitar necks. My Ibanez guitars have thin guitar necks, which are what I prefer. Fender guitars have thicker necks, which are different from what I’m used.
So I placed the order for the Yngwie Malmsteen fender without ever playing one and had it in 2 days. I heard you will either love scalloped fretboard or hate it. For me, I love it.
There is something about playing this guitar where it feels like I’m playing for the first time and I can’t wait to play again. It’s not as foreign as I thought it would be. To me this Fender guitar feels natural.
Your fingers don’t touch the wood at all due to the scalloped fretboard. I thought this would be bad for me since I love really low action. It’s an illusion that the action is high due to the scallops. Within about an hour I was getting the hang of playing the guitar.
You need to be careful when playing this guitar since it will sound out of tune sometimes due to the amount of pressure you put on the strings. If you press the string a little too much you will go sharp. There is no fretboard / wood under your fingers to stop you so it’s easy to keep pushing a little harder, which will result in the guitar going out of tune.
This is only really noticeable when playing chords. there are some chords you play everyday with no problem but on this guitar it can be a problem really fast with more complicated guitar chords. Each finger has to have the right amount of pressure to prevent strings from going sharp.
As for playing fast I have no problem with it. the lighter you play the faster and cleaner you will be. This Yngwie Fender guitar is awesome for legato, bending notes or tapping.
I was amazed right away with the vibrato and bends. I can’t explain how perfect and natural this Fender guitar feels. I have always had great vibrato and bends but with this guitar it’s total freedom. It is effortless to bend higher notes on this Fender guitar due to the scalloped fretboard. Even vibrato on the higher notes is easier because of the scalloped fretboard.
Regular guitars can be tougher to bend higher notes due to the shortening of the string as you get higher on the neck. Not so with the scalloped fretboard on the Fender. I love the way this feels. Some other people complained that when you play on the high E string or do certain chords involving this string, your finger will slip off. Well that is true. It just happens but it’s not a deal breaker at all. I don’t find this to be a huge issue, just something I need to be more in control of.
You need to spend a little more time looking at your playing and focusing on each individual finger’s pressure when playing this Malmsteen Fender, especially chords. It will sound bad if you don’t press evenly…and I mean like you just started playing bad. That is a downside. All the years I have been playing, I’m not going to risk playing easy chords and having them sound like I’m a beginner or that I don’t know how to tune my guitar. This statement may scare you but don’t let it. You just need to spend a little time focusing on your finger pressure, along with your chording. Yes it’s an extra step but it’s a very small step backwards. After playing this then picking up an Ibanez I play a little faster on the Ibanez…probably because I don’t have to be as concerned with the strings going sharp or whatever…I can just play. Don’t let this detour you…I’m just letting you know what is on my mind. It’s a great instrument and I love it. As for looks I can’t be happier. I love the aged look and it’s more than what I expected it to be…it’s truly a work of art.
The tone is really nice. I am happy with the heavy tone of the guitar. I was afraid it was going to be THUD THUD THUD with palm mutes but I’m pleasantly surprised. It sounds pretty good. The last few times I played it, I haven’t even plugged it in since it sounds so good with no amp…it just resonates.
Here’s a video I made showcasing the Yngwie Malmsteen Fender guitar from my YouTube channel.
I haven’t used the whammy that much and don’t plan to with this since when I do whammy I whammy a lot! I’m sure this Fender guitar can take it but I just don’t plan to play this like that.
The Fender tweed case is really nice…the fender tweed / cloth on the outside. I’m going to enjoy this guitar in my home and probably will not gig with it. I don’t want it stolen.
This is a really sweet guitar and I’m glad I made the purchase. I would definitely purchase again. I Hope this helped you.
Checkout the Yngwie Malmsteen Fender guitar HERE
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I’m a video editor of 25 years, audio engineer 20 years, photographer 25 years and guitarist 20 years. Visit my YouTube channel, Rotter, for videos on photography, camera gear, creativity in video editing, movie reviews and the gear I use in my studio.
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