Up for sale, a 1990 Fender STR-680 Pro-Feel Series Stratocaster in exceptional, 100% original condition and in perfect working order, complete with the original gigbag and hangtags. Part of the short-lived, upper-tiered Pro-Feel Series, this rare STR-680 model was crafted at the venerable Fujigen factory for the Japanese domestic market, rarely seen outside its country of origin. With a poplar body capped by Raspberry Burst-finished birdseye maple veneers on top and back, gold hardware including the Floyd Rose-licensed tremolo, contoured neck heel and SSH pickup array, this guitar falls comfortably into the Super Strat category.
The stock ceramic magnet Hotrod-7S single coils in the neck and middle positions have oversized poles similar to a Duncan Quarter Pounder, offering plenty of sparkle and cut with more authority and punch than alnico magnets, while the Dragster humbucker in the bridge position is designed for higher gain with a thick, powerful sound. This guitar weighs 9lbs 6oz, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike’s Guitar Bar with 10-46 strings, slinky action and spot-on intonation.
The maple neck has a slender C-shaped profile carve with well-rounded shoulders and an effortless, fast feel, measuring .805” deep at the 1st fret and .885” at the 12th. The thick slab rosewood fretboard has a 12” radius and retains the stock jumbo fretwire. The frets are in fantastic shape, retaining their full factory height with well-rounded crowns, showing only a hint of wear beneath the plain strings on frets 1-4. This guitar plays cleanly up the 25 1/2” scale with a straight neck and a responsive, optimally-adjusted truss rod. The locking nut measures 1.650” (42mm) in width, and the headstock is fitted with a gold string retainer bar and the original “Made in Japan”-stamped Gotoh tuning machines. The “Made in Japan” text and H-prefix serial are present above the contoured four-bolt neck plate with micro-tilt adjustment. The neck heel retains the factory STR-80 model stamp, reflecting the model designations used for this same instrument circa 1988-89. The pot codes conclusively date this instrument to March, 1990, by which point it had been rebranded as the STR-680 (as reflected by the hangtags).
All of the electronics function as intended, with a five-way pickup selector switch and Master Volume and Tone controls governing the SSH pickup array. The harness is all original, with untouched solder on the full-size Japanese pots. All of the gold hardware is notably clean, including the dome-top knurled knobs and the Ex-Trem Floyd Rose Licensed tremolo, which accentuates easily for deep divebombs or more subtle expressive warbles. There is a light dusting of patina on the gold trem arm. The three-ply black pickguard displays some requisite scuffing along the pick path on the treble side.
The gloss Raspberry Burst finish is a dark and dramatic application, highlighting the subtle birdseye figuring in the veneers on the top and back of the body, particularly on the lower bout. This is a particularly well-kept example, with cosmetic wear limited to a scant few faint scratches and just a couple microscopic dings on the body as a whole. The satin finish on the neck profile has been buffed to a semi-gloss from contact with the palm, clean and smooth with just a couple tiny dings on the bass-side shoulder behind frets 2 and 3 that have no impact on playability.
The original Fender-branded gigbag is included, along with the hangtags. One of the two zippers on the bag is not functional, but the other one is and the gigbag can still be securely closed.