The Yngwie Malmsteen Strat


You act like your perspective is somehow more valid than mine which is not the case.

I own 12 guitars all of which have different setups and features and this one is the one that I felt needed the most adjustment to from my perspective. From other topics on the internet discussing the same feature/issue it’s clearly something that bothers others, not just me.

The point of this thread originally was someone wanting to know about this guitar and I felt this was a feature of it they should be aware of. That’s the point here, not proving whether this design choice is ‘correct’ or not.


But the point is simply this:

Yes, at the beginning is easier to slip the high E string from the fretboard in the Yngwie models.

No, it is not a model defect, and you can easily learn to avoid that without having to change the bridge or do any significant modification to the guitar.


No horse in this race, but after doing a bit of googling to confirm that the Yngwie strat really does pair a narrower “modern” neck width with a wider “vintage” string spacing at the bridge and finding this rather loving, extremely thorough write-up of the different iterations of the Yngwie signature model (seriously, it’s a great read even if you’re not a fan) and that this was a common gripe with the model…

…I’m not sure you can fairly call it a “defect” since it was a spec choice by Yngwie… But it’s certainly an odd one, and not a very popular one, evidently, that a lot of people have felt the need to address in the aftermarket:

The 2007 is more susceptible, however, to an under-reported malady of Fender Strats which share this combination of vintage string spacing on the tremolo end paired with a modern, narrower neck. The high E string needs very little encouragement to slip off the fretboard, and makes a frightful squeak as it does so. Hybrid tremolos can be bought to address this, with vintage screw spacing but modern string spacing to match the neck — cheaply, a Highway One Strat tremolo will work; more expensively, Callaham makes a nice model — but these aren’t mods you should have to make to a $2,000 USA-built guitar

Idunno. Personally, if I owned one of these, yeah, I’d want to swap the bridge.

EDIT - and it looks like the author is at least a CtC reader, if not actually a member here.


I’m very appreciative of the information given in this thread. Sadly I don’t think this guitar is for me because of the bridge situation.


Easy bud, don’t know where you read into my post as such. I clearly state differnt people see it their own way!

Also it’s clearly a concious design choice, but evidently, not for very one!

That article on the differ models is fantastic, I litterly studied it before I got mine.

To the OP, I hope you get to try one out some time some day.


If you have another Fender Stratocaster sitting around, don’t forget about ordering a scalloped neck from


I’m not sure a scalloped neck is for me…

Getting an American strategy and loading it with YJM pickgaurd might be an option. …


Sometimes this issue can be solved by loosening the neck bolts and adjusting the heel into the pocket properly.


You are absolutely right that it will not be clear for a while if a scalloped neck is your style, or not! So, I see no alternative but to try one, or just not bother (as they are fringe products with a tiny market share). Ideally a friend of yours has a scalloped neck that you can try for a month, but otherwise there is always the Warmoth option.

But regarding YJM pickups, is it even worth bothering? My guess is, “no.”


I would need something more powerful than the stock fender SC PUs.

Either the YJM, or the Fury set…
Any suggestions?


The fury pickups suck, too much output for that classic Yngwie sound.


DiMarzio HS-3 in the bridge HS-4 in neck and middle. Wired for a 3 way switch. No load pot on the bridge tone that’s how Yngwie had it wired back in the day.


I am not qualified, but let me propose to not even bother changing your pickups. Here is why… I would not be surprised if buffered EQ before your effects chain would make it very difficult to discern one S pickup from another in a double-blind test, except perhaps if you listen for 60Hz noise.

Indeed, I recall watching a Rig Rundown on ZZ Top that showcased their setup, and each of Billy Gibbon’s axes had a unique number on them, and his roadies would dial in the pre-computed EQ for that particular guitar to make them all sound roughly the same. Of course physics dictates that pickup placement and H vs. S cannot be mathematically treated as EQ, but I’ll bet it comes out “close enough.” Watch from 8:30, here

But I must confess that I freak out that pickups send low-voltage signals over a non-differential cable, and this is why I only use active pickups (with batteries), as they enable these amazing and super-cheap chips called op amps to powefully buffer the signal. So, I just am lazy and drop in something from EMG and then just EQ, as I don’t care very much, I want powerful and pristine signal to feed into my processor (Axe-FX 2 XL).

Sorry to know so little, but do consider playing around with a scalloped neck… I can only promise you one thing, you will either LOVE or HATE it, I just don’t know which! (But if you love complex chords, you will hate it, because they won’t stay in tune because of your fingers sliding up/down the frets given that they have no friction on the wood.)


If I go with the American strat, I will definitely get the DiMarzio HS3/4 installed.

I.will try to play a scalloped neck, but highly doubt I will go in that direction. Thx


I’ve played a TON of different singlecoils over the years - a whole bunch of Dimarzio’s noise-cancelling and blade mini 'bucker options, the majority of Fender options, and a couple other things here and there, swapping them in and out of the same guitar and doing A/B comparisons.

My personal favorite singlecoils I’ve played are the Suhr ML Standards. They’re only slightly more exensive than Fender singlecoils, they (along with the V60s I have in a different guitar) somehow sound and feel more “solid” and open than Fenders, and they’re hotter and more punchy than even something like a Texas Special set, without SOUNDING like an overwound singlecoil - when I picked my Strat up from being refret last summer, the tech working on them (a very well regarded shop in the greater Boston area) was curious what the pickups were, because to him they sounded exactly like a vintage singlecoil should. Awesome, awesome pickups.


No offense, but not interested in a classic strat sound , texas…

I’m looking for early yngwie, John Norum- Europe type tone

If I were to get an American strat, I would go with the HS3 or the Fury pick guard


[quote=“Dissonant_Timbres, post:51, topic:7807, full:true”]
The fury pickups suck, too much output for that classic Yngwie sound.
[/quote] Hardly bro, they’re just about standard output for an average strat. Not hot by any measure.

YJM’s own words support the fact that the HS3/4 were too low on the output, but he put up with it for lack of any choice.

If anybody is doing a YJM guitar in 2019, the SD Fury is the way to go.

I think the better tone people associate with his earlier recordings can be attributed to better producers, a lot of YJM’s newer albums don’t sound “good” in general.

I’d think either sets of pickups would get you there, but the SD’s would make it easier to get the high gain tones, and be at par with other strat type guitars as well.


I’m not really either - I’m definitely more in the Satriani camp than the Yngwie, but while the MLs sound great clean - plenty of high end, maybe a bit punchier than vintage singlecoils, but not to the point where you’d notice something amiss - they sound phenomenal overdriven, and through my Mesa at least do cop a decent vintage Yngwie vibe.

If you do go with the HS3, remember that Yngwie wired them up split, as a true singlecoil, rather than as a hum-cancelling singlecoil. IIRC due to the asymetrical coils this also juices the output a hair, but these are definitely vintage-output pickups, even when split.


The pickups are a big part of it. AFAIK Yngwie produced all his albums, or at least has the credit. Part of that old school Yngwie sound is a very soft clipped sound.


What’s the consensus on the American elite strat? I might consider one, swapping out with the fury pick guard. …

I played a few $900 strats at GC this weekend.
Those lacquered necks are awful. …

I hope that’s not the case with the elites