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Like the neck, the wood used for the body, and its quality, plays a role in how the guitar sound.Alder is used in most Fender Strats mainly because of its light weight and it’s easy to finish due to minimal grain lines.In the 80s and early 90s, Japanese Fenders were well known for being superior to any other models and the quality is still top notch.Neck wood and contour plays an important role in how the guitar sounds and how it feels to play.
Some like the vintage glossy nitro finish and some prefer the more modern satin finish.
Alder is also the most neutral sounding of the commonly used wood types with a full tone, well balanced lower end a hint of mid range.
Swamp ash, or southern ash, is considered as the most musical wood and it’s often preferred by the more demanding players.
That’s kind of the point too, considering that MIM models are Fender’s budget brand (above Squier).
However, over the last decade or so, the MIMs has gotten a considerable face lift and the overall quality is very high.