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Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster
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Playability
68
Sound
69
Build
64
Value
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Score
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Playability
77
Sound
82
Build
70
Value
66
Score
76
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Side to side spec comparison >

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster vs Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler

Reasons to Get
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster over Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler

Release Year
2023 vs 2021
From a more recent year
Type of Frets
Medium Jumbo vs Jumbo
You'll feel the fretboard when pressing down the strings
Scale Length
25.5" vs 27" to 25.5"
Easier to adapt to
Neck Profile
Modern C vs Slim D
Comfortable neck that works for most people
Strings
6 vs 8
Narrower neck and fewer strings to change
Pickups
H vs HH
Hum-free with more right hand freedom and sustain
Nut Width
1.65'' (41.9mm) vs 2.126'' (54mm)
Favors small hands, easier bar chords and other shapes
Bridge
Fixed vs Kahler
Good sustain and needs no set-up
Fretboard Radius
9.5'' (241.3mm) vs 16'' (406.4mm)
Easier to play chords without muting strings
Value Score
67 vs 66
Better price/quality relationship

Reasons to Get
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler over Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster

Decorative Top
Burled Maple vs None
Finished with beautiful natural wood patterns
Frets Height
Taller vs Shorter
Easier to press down strings and bend them
Type of Frets
Jumbo vs Medium Jumbo
You won't feel the fretboard when pressing down the strings
Scale Length
27" to 25.5" vs 25.5"
Less fret buzz with less string stiffness
Neck Profile
Slim D vs Modern C
Thin and flat neck for playing fast
Pickup Mods
Coil Split vs None
Splits humbuckers into single coil pickups
Strings
8 vs 6
Allows you to play lower notes
Switch Positions
3 vs 0
More tone options
Tone Knobs
1 vs 0
More tone control
Pickups
HH vs H
High output without hum
Number of Frets
24 vs 21
Allows to reach higher notes
Nut Width
2.126'' (54mm) vs 1.65'' (41.9mm)
Less likely to mute strings by accident and more space for fingerstyle
Bridge
Kahler vs Fixed
Intense vibratos and can be locked to stop floating
Fretboard Radius
16'' (406.4mm) vs 9.5'' (241.3mm)
Flatter fretboard makes it easier to play single notes and bend

Other Key Differences
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster vs Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler

Bridge Pickup
Fender Seymour Duncan Invader SH8 Humbucking vs Seymour Duncan Sentient
Different Bridge Pickup
Body Wood
Alder vs Mahogany
Different Body Wood
Fretboard Wood
Rosewood vs Ebony
Different Fretboard Wood
Headstock
6 vs 4-4
Different Headstock
Nut Material
Synthetic Bone vs Locking
Different Nut Material

Shared Features
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster vs Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler

Neck Wood
Maple
Same Neck Wood
Body Type
Solid Body
Feedback free
Volume Knobs
1
Same volume control
Paint Finish
Poly
Resistant paint that ages well
Pickups Power
Passive
Cleaner sound and no battery needed
Neck Joint
Bolt-On
Allows you to detach and swap the neck

Common Strengths

  • High-Quality Nut
  • Top Pickup Brand
  • Expensive Wood

Common Weaknesses

  • Neck-Through Build
  • Weight Relief
  • Stays in Tune (Evertune)
  • High-Quality Frets
  • Compound Radius Fretboard
  • From a High-Quality-Standards Country
  • Luminescent Sidedots
  • Strap Lock
  • 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • Active/Passive Preamp

Price History Comparison

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Prices

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Which One is Better for Beginners?

The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster meets 6 out of our 8 criteria items for beginner friendliness, while the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler meets only 2. This takes into account the type of frets, scale length, nut width, bridge type, fretboard radius, and neck profile to determine the easiest combination for new players.

New Player Friendliness

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster
  • Comfortable shape
  • Easy-to-use bridge
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Tall frets
  • Narrow nut
  • Comfortable neck
  • Short scale
  • Locking tuners

New Player Friendliness

Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
  • Tall frets
  • Comfortable neck
  • Comfortable shape
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Narrow nut
  • Short scale
  • Locking tuners
  • Easy-to-use bridge

Nevertheless, when it comes to choosing an instrument, you should pick the one more compatible with your personal style. Still, below we'll try you to give you our results as objectively as it's possible to help you decide.

Sound Quality Comparison

The wood used in an electric guitar or bass is not as important to determine the final tone. However, some people prefer specific wood types, so we'll take a look at those first. Then, we'll take a look at the electronics to determine the versatility and sound quality of each instrument.

Woods Used in Both

Maple wood pattern used for guitar building
Maple

Maple is one of the most popular necks for good reasons. It is a strong wood that is relatively cheap to make and looks beautiful. The highest quality maple is the hardest that comes from North America. Find out more about Maple.

Woods Used in the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster

Rosewood wood pattern used for guitar building
Rosewood
Alder wood pattern used for guitar building
Alder

Rosewood is an almost purple-looking wood that is used mainly for fretboards since it's heavy, rare, and expensive. It's sometimes used on acoustic guitar bodies to create stronger warm tones. Find out more about Rosewood.

Alder is the most popular wood that Fender uses in most of their guitars nowadays. Even though they say it's because of its balanced tone with an emphasis in the upper midrange, it probably is because it isn't too expensive, and it's also pretty lightweight—more than Mahogany. Find out more about Alder.

Woods Used in the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler

Ebony wood pattern used for guitar building
Ebony
Mahogany wood pattern used for guitar building
Mahogany

Ebony is a high-end wood, so it is not cheap. It's only used for fretboards because it's also very heavy. It does an excellent job as a durable material while looking elegant. Find out more about Ebony.

Mahogany is a fairly rare wood nowadays. It's used mostly for bodies due to its relatively lightweight. Gibson popularized it with their Les Paul guitars during their golden years, so this wood has a lot of good reputation behind it. The most expensive type comes from South America and it's still used by Gibson even today. Find out more about Mahogany.

Winner: Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler.

Pickup Configuration

The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster has an H configuration while the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler has HH pickups.

A single H pickup gives you the advantage of having a little longer sustain (all other things being equal) because there will be less magnetic fields from other pickups affecting the strings' vibration. However, they also give you the least versatility because you won't have other pickups at different distances from the bridge to create different tones. A single humbucking pickup is used for noiseless high output, which is used mainly for Hard Rock genres.

On the other hand, Double Humbucker (HH) is the choice for people who want a fuller, more round sound with tons of mids and lows. Humbuckers also get rid of the hum noise that plague single-coil pickups. They can work out for almost any genre going from Djent to even Jazz.

Pickups Quality

Both come with very good pickups from at least one of the specialized brands in the market. With pickups like these, you probably won't need an upgrade anytime soon.

However, the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster has a slight sound quality advantage when taking into account other factors like the type of pickups, magnet, position, etc.

We found the same or similar pickups to the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's online:

Both use Passive pickups. This is what's used for most music genres. They have a regular output and will serve you for both high-gain and clean tones. The alternative (Active pickups) offer a higher output that is mostly used for heavy music.

Winner: Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster.

Versatility Comparison

Some instruments offer you more ways to explore your creativity than others. Below you'll find how both compare when it comes to versatility.

Switch Options

The Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler gives you 3 switch options while the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster gives you 0. This means that the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler gives you more options to find the right pickup combination for the type of sound you want to achieve

Only the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler comes with some kind of pickup modification: Coil Split.

Coil Split lets you disconnect one of the pickup coils. When used with humbuckers, it turns them into single-coil with lower output and cleaner tone.

The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster doesn't come with pickup switching options.

Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler pickups switch and push knobs diagram
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's switch options

When evaluating versatility, we also take into consideration bridge and neck joint type, number of frets, switch options, amount of pickups and more.

Winner: Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler.

Final Sound Quality Scores

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster
Pickups 90
Sustain 75
Versatility 42
Tuning Stability 70
Sound 69
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
Pickups 85
Sustain 80
Versatility 79
Tuning Stability 85
Sound 82

Build Quality Comparison

When it comes to build quality, we like to take into account everything used to build the instrument. This includes materials, hardware and the quality control expected depending on the country where it was built. Let's see how the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster compares to the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler.

Country of Origin

The manufacturing country can tell a lot about the build quality of an instrument. The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster is built in Mexico while the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler is made in South Korea.

Mexico has been for a long time where Fender has built their semi-premium series. If you don't want to overpay for a wellp-built instrument, a guitar built in this country by a good brand always offers good value for the money.

South Korea was for many years the number one choice for mass-producing semi-premium guitars. They can build excellent guitars for a cheap price. Now, it's less common to find Korean guitars because Indonesia has proved capable of building guitars just as well, but likely for cheaper.

Winner: Tie

Nut Material

If you want your guitar to stay in tune and sound good, you need a well cut nut. Nut quality can be inconsistent even when comparing two copies of the same model. The best way to make sure you're nut will be well done is by getting a nut made by an expert company like TUSQ or Micarta.

The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster has a Synthetic Bone nut. Bone is the best natural material for guitar nuts. However, its tonal properties can be inconsistent. That's the problem that synthetic bone fixes. This is much better than using a plastic nut because the nut is more slippery—which helps with tuning stability—, and it gives your open strings rich harmonics.

On the other hand, the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler comes with a Locking nut. Instead of a regular nut, this guitar has a locking system that will lock down the strings at the nut, preventing it from getting out of tune. It removes one of the disadvantages of tremolo bridges, tune stability.

Winner: Tie.

Fret Material

Most fret wire is made of nickel silver. This material eventually wears down after a lot of use and most instruments end up needing a complete fret replacement. However, some expensive models come with stainless steel frets. This is what you should aim for if you can afford it.

Unfortunately, none of them come with stainless steel frets.

Winner: Tie.

Bridge

The perfect bridge for you will depend on your playstyle because they all have advantages and disadvantages. However, some bridges are more expensive—like Floyd Roses and Evertunes—and thus add more value to a guitar.

The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's brige is a Fixed. It's a simple bridge that is very beginner-friendly since it doesn't require any set-up. You can swap strings easily. It might also give more sustain since it doesn't have complex moving parts that make the strings lose vibration. However, it doesn't have the same versatility as a tremolo bridge.

On the other hand, the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's is a Kahler. It's a floating tremolo very similar to Floyd Rose but less popular. The main difference is that you can lock it to the body, which essentially turns it into a fixed bridge. Some heavy metal players prefer this bridge over Floyd Rose because it won't move and get out of pitch when they palm mute.

Since we need to be objective, the most expensive type of bridge will be the winner of this section. In the end, this doesn't matter if you're not going to use the bridge for its original purpose, so choose the bridge that fits your playing style better.

Winner: Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler.

Tuners

Both come with regular tuners. The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's are Fender Vintage-Style while the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's are Grover 18:1

Winner: Tie.

Neck Joint

Contrary to popular belief, the difference in sustain and tone that some neck joints give to a guitar is simply unperceivable—if they're all well built. However, some of them do have advantages over the others.

Both have a Bolt-On neck joint. This neck is joined to the body by 4 bolts that you can simply unscrew. This allows you to replace the neck or take it off for travel. It's the most common and cheapest way to build a guitar.

Winner: Tie.

Here is the list of features that were considered when choosing the winner in the Features subcategory:

Strengths & Weaknesses
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster
  • Expensive Wood
  • Synthetic Bone Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • Made in Mexico
  • No Neck-Through Build
  • No Push Knob or Extra Switch Option
  • No Weight Relief
  • No Luminescent Inlay
  • No Tremolo
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Strap Lock
Strengths & Weaknesses
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
  • Expensive Wood
  • Locking Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Coil Split Pickups
  • Tremolo
  • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
  • No Locking Tuners
  • Made in South Korea
  • No Neck-Through Build
  • No Weight Relief
  • No Luminescent Inlay
  • No Compound Radius Fretboard
  • No 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • No Retainer Bar
  • No Strap Lock

Final Build Quality Scores

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster
Quality of materials 66
Features 50
Quality Control 75
Build Quality 64
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
Quality of materials 55
Features 70
Quality Control 85
Build Quality 70

Playability Comparison

Let's now compare their playability. Bear in mind that the instrument will feel different depending on your hand size and play style. That's why you should always test before buying. But if you can't or want a second opinion on it, we can still take a look at each of the important measurements of the instrument for you. This way, we can predict how easy a guitar might be to play, or how different it will feel compared to the other.

Remember that, even though the difference might seem small, every inch counts when it comes to feeling of the instrument in your hands. Any variation can completely change how comfortable a guitar feels in your hands.

Nut Width

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Nut Width
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Nut Width
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler Nut Width
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler Nut Width

The nut width will affect the separation between strings at the nut. In this comparison, the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler has the wider nut with 54mm (2.126'') vs 41.9mm (1.65''). This is a 12.1mm (0.476'') difference

This means that it will be more difficult to do bar chords on the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler, especially closer to the nut. However, it's also easier to play without muting strings accidently. This favors people with big hands.

Scale Length

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's Scale Length
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's Scale Length
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's Scale Length
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's Scale Length

The scale length is one of the things that influences playability the most. This is the distance between the nut and the bridge and will affect everything from low action allowance, difficulty to perform bends, fret separation, and even tone.

In this case, the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler features a multi-scale of 27" to 25.5" while the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster has a regular scale of 25.5".

A multi-scale fingerboard incorporates two scale lengths at the same time. This is present in some instruments with long scale to give a different tension to the lower strings than the higher strings. The thickest strings need more tension to avoid fret buzz (especially when tuned low), so the scale is longer for these strings, while the thinnest strings will need less tension (because they have a lower gauge), so they have a shorter scale to reduce stiffness for bends.

It can feel awkward if you've never played a multi-scale because the frets will have more separation for the higher strings, but a lot of people love their versatility.

On the other hand, the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's 25.5" regular scale means it has a fixed scale for all the strings.This is the scale used in most Stratocasters. It's slightly longer than the typical 24.75'' size found in Les Pauls, and it's one of the main reasons why Stratocasters have such a bright sound in general. A longer scale also means that the strings will have higher tension. This will help you get lower action without suffering fret buzz, which will also be helpful when playing in lower tunings without having to increase your string gauge.

However, this also means that there will be more separation between frets, which can make it more difficult to play. Also, bending the strings will require more strengths due to the increased tension, but remember that a tremolo guitar will offset this difficulty.

Lastly, remember that you can also affect the tension of the strings by changing your string gauge. You can use a thicker gauge for more tension and a lighter one for less tension.

Neck Profile

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Neck Profile
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's neck profile
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler Neck Profile
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's neck profile

No single neck shape is better than others. However, most people tend to prefer a thinner necks because it doesn't get in their way when playing fast and most hand sizes can adapt to it pretty well. However, some people still prefer thicker necks for a better grip, especially if they have big hands.

In this case, both have different neck shapes:

The Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster has a C type of neck. This is what you'll find in most modern guitars. Most people feel like the thickness of a C neck is simply the less intrusive one for playing fast, while at the same time allowing you to grab the neck easily for resting if you want to.

The Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler, on the other hand, has a D neck. This is a thin and flat neck that is made for playing fast. If you prefer a neck that doesn't get in your way when soloing, this is the shape you should use. Guitarists that prefer to have a bit more grip won't like this type of neck.

Fretboard Radius

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Fingerboard Radius
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's Fingerboard radius
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler Fingerboard Radius
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's Fingerboard radius

Most guitar fretboards are not flat; they usually have a curve or arc across their width. A curved fretboard will make it easier to perform chords without muting strings, while a flatter one will make it easier to play single notes, which is good for bending and soloing in general. The best fretboards have a compound radius that varies across the fingerboard, but they're not common since they take a lot more work to build.

In this case, the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's fingerboard radius is smaller, which means it's more curved than the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's. This extra arc will make playing chords easier in this model. You won't be as likely to mute the strings, especially if you have big hands. However, playing single notes and bending will be easier on the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler.

Hand Size Comfortability

Everyone has a different hand size, and that's why it's recommended to try a guitar before buying, even if others tell you that it's comfortable to play. However, we can know whether a guitar favors small or large hands just by knowing its exact measurements.

And after taking into account the scale length, nut width, neck profile and fretboard radius, we can conclude that the Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler favors large hands more than the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster.

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster:
Big Hands
Small Hands
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler:
Big Hands
Small Hands

Fret Size

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Frets Size
Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's Frets Size
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler Frets Size
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler's Frets Size

The Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler has Jumbo frets, which should be taller than the Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster's Medium Jumbo frets.

Some people prefer taller frets because they result in more sustain since the strings get pressed cleanly without interference from the fretboard. However, if they're too tall—like Jumbo frets—, you might change the pitch of the strings accidentally if you press too hard because you won't be touching the fretboard with your fingers. This is also why some guitarists with a heavy grip prefer smaller frets. They like to feel the fingerboard to avoid pressing down too hard and getting out of pitch.

Final Playability Scores

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster
Bending & Vibrato Ease 65
Chord Playability 80
Solo Playability 60
Playability 68
Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
Bending & Vibrato Ease 85
Chord Playability 55
Solo Playability 90
Playability 77

Specs Side-by-Side

Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster vs Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
General Fender Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Dean ML Select 8 Multiscale Kahler
Brand: Fender Dean
Year: 2023 2021
Configuration: H HH
Strings: 6 8
Made in: Mexico South Korea
Series: Limited Edition Tom DeLonge Stratocaster Select
Colors: Black Burst
Left-Handed Version: No No
Body
Type: Solid Body Solid Body
Body Material: Alder Eastern Mahogany
Bridge: 6-Saddle String-Through-Body Hardtail With Block Saddles Kahler Multiscale Trem
Neck
Neck Joint: Bolt-On Bolt-On
Tuners: Fender Vintage-Style Grover 18:1
Fretboard: Slab Rosewood Ebony
Neck Material: Maple 3 Piece Maple
Decoration: White Dot Pearloid Dot
Scale Size: 25.5" 27" to 25.5"
Shape: Modern C Slim D
Thickness: 1st Fret: 0.82'' (20.8mm) - 12th Fret: 0.87'' (22.1mm) 1st Fret: - 12th Fret:
Frets: 21 Medium Jumbo Nickel Silver 24 Jumbo Nickel Silver
Fretboard Radius: 9.5" 16"
Nut: Synthetic Bone Locking
Nut Width: 41.9mm (1.65'') 54mm (2.126'')
Electronics
Bridge Pickup: Fender Seymour Duncan Invader SH8 Humbucking (Humbucker / Passive) Seymour Duncan Sentient (Humbucker / Passive)
Middle Pickup:
Neck Pickup: Seymour Duncan Nazgul (Humbucker / Passive)
Switch: 0 Way 3 Way
Knobs: Bell Dome
Pickup Mods: None Coil Split
Volume Controls: 1 1
Tone Controls: 0 1