Squier Fender Vintage SS Jaguar Bass Guitar Review

If you appreciate the sound of a short-scale instrument, you will love the Squier Fender Vintage SS Modified Special Jaguar Bass. While this short-scale bass guitar is classified as a student model, the Jaguar Bass Special SS is perfect for players of all kinds who want a short-scale instrument. The Jaguar has a distinctive harp shape that gives this bass guitar a classic look.

With the smooth offset waist design, slim action neck, and Jazz Bass single-coiled bridge pickup, this Fender Jaguar Bass is a terrific bass guitar. Enjoy the sound of a great tone that is available at a fantastic price. Although the Vintage SS is seen as a student model, it has been used by many professional musicians for years.

You can buy the Squier bass in four different models but the Vintage SS model is the only one available as a short-scale and many players refer to it as the “Jaguar”. With our review of the Fender Squier Vintage SS bass guitar, we hope to give you an overview of the instrument and why it is the perfect bass guitar for many players of all levels.

If you want to consider other bass guitar options, you can read our guide on the best bass guitar brands.


  • Affordable
  • Comfortable to use
  • Fun and easy to play
  • Looks cool
  • Sounds great when plugged in
  • You can blend the tone for any type of context


  • The finish is not perfect
  • Finding a gig bag to fit the guitar is difficult
  • Not big enough for taller players or those with bigger hands

About the Fender Squier Vintage SS

You can buy the Squier in two color styles: Candy Apple Red and Black. The guitar has an Agathis shaped body with a C shape neck. The electronics used on the guitar are straightforward and good enough for the price of the bass. In the middle position, there is a Precision Bass split-coil pickup and near the end of the bridge, you have a Jazz bass single coil pickup.

Each of the pickups is connected individually to its own 250k Alpha volume potentiometer. The master tone controls functioned by a 3rd 250k pot and 0.050-microfarad capacitor and painted for shielding. The headstock and pickguard are black and the fingerboards made with rosewood. To find your way around the notes there are white plastic inlays and the complete unit has a classy design.

The headstock and pickguard are black and the fingerboards are made with rosewood. The fingerboard contains white plastic inlays to mark positions. The neck is finished with polyurethane.

Overall the Fender Squier Vintage SS has a very classy design that will make you look like a true rockstar.


The Squier Vintage SS has a distinctive body shape that allows this bass guitar to stand out from the crowd. It features a “C”-shaped profile neck that is designed for comfort and performance. The neck features a smooth-back finish made from polyurethane that is ideal for players who place their thumb on the side or back of the neck.

The top loading bridge and tuners have a solid tuning stability and the truss rods are perfect. The neck of the guitar is straight and the frets are well-installed. The Fender Squier bass has a four-saddle bridge and you can adjust the height, intonation, and placement of the truss rod separately. The bass guitar outfit comes with a pair of Allen wrenches. The downside is that the instrument does not come with a manual or any type of instruction sheet. You can, however, read the entire user manual here.

The neck is very narrow but gets wider towards the bass body. The 30″ scale keeps the frets a closer together making it easier to play for many people, not just tall bass players. You can enjoy playing the Jaguar seated or standing as offset waist of the body makes it more comfortable to play. Furthermore, it has a forearm counter and rear tummy contour to increase comfortable playing.

Easy to Set Up and Play

The Vintage SS is easy to set up as it has only two volumes and one master tone. Furthermore, it does not have a string-through bridge which makes stringing the bass very simple when you need to change strings.

Even intermediate players will find that playing this bass guitar will be a dream since it allows you to:

  • Thump play it with for smooth and definite notes as it is a short-scale
  • Pluck it as it has a fret clack
  • Easily slap play with the short-scale
  • Open pick, but may require an upgrade to a bigger string size
  • Cleanly perform muted picking

Who the Jaguar is Made For

The Jaguar is made for kids, teens, and smaller adults as it is a short-scale. Even older people will enjoy playing this guitar. The Fender has an amazing bass sound which is great for beginner bass players to understand how they should sound.

The bass can grow with you and you can make additional changes to make it fit your style. You can add different pickups, knobs, locks, and strap retainers to it. See our upgrades section below to see how you can customize the Jaguar to play even better.


The Vintage SS is most affordable online and currently sells for less than $200. Customers love all the features that come with this beginner bass and for a starter bass guitar, the price is amazing.


  • Has a “C” shape neck
  • Has 20 medium jumbo frets
  • Single-coil Jazz bass bridge pickup (“PJ” pickup)
  • The radius of the fingerboard is 9.5″ and made from rosewood
  • The nut width is 1.5-inches
  • Has a 30-inch scale length
  • Has a split single-coil Precision Bass middle pickup
  • Has one Precision Bass Pickup volume control and two Jazz Bass Pickup volume with a Master Tone for both pickups
  • Has a standard 4-saddle bridge
  • Standard open-gear tuning machine
  • Uses Fender USA NPS strings
  • Warranty: 2 Year Limited Warranty

Recommended Upgrades


The first upgrade we recommend that you make is to the strings. The strings that come with the Jaguar are not great and don’t unlock the real sound of this bass guitar. We highly recommend upgrading to Ernie Ball Slinky Bass Strings. If you want more options, check out our guide to the best bass guitar strings.


If you can afford it and feel like you are experienced enough playing the bass, upgrading the pickups will greatly improve the sound of your bass guitar. While the pickup that comes with the Jaguar is great for beginners, it lags behind other bass guitar pickups for intermediate players. You can browse additional bass pickups to determine which one will help the instrument the most and then read about how to change your pickup here.

Final Thoughts

The Fender Squier Vintage SS Jaguar Bass Guitar will make a perfect gift for any teenager or adult who wants to learn how to play. For the student, the bass is less intimidating as it has a short-scale and affordable. It not only appeals to students but also more advanced players. Once you start playing this bass guitar, you won’t be able to put it down.


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