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Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster
Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
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Playability
68
Sound
72
Build
67
Value
69
Score
69
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Playability
80
Sound
74
Build
72
Value
60
Score
75
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Side to side spec comparison >

Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster vs Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ

Reasons to Get
Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster over Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ

Release Year
2023 vs 2019
From a more recent year
Type of Frets
Medium Jumbo vs Jumbo
You'll feel the fretboard when pressing down the strings
Neck Profile
U Shape vs Patent Pending Spec. C Shaped
Comfortable neck with more grip
Neck Joint
Bolt-On vs Set
Allows you to detach and swap the neck
Pickups
SS vs HH
Beautiful cleans
Nut Width
1.615'' (41mm) vs 1.693'' (43mm)
Favors small hands, easier bar chords and other shapes
Paint Finish
Poly vs Nitro
Resistant paint that ages well
Scale Length
25.5'' (647.7mm) vs 24.6'' (624.8mm)
Lower action and brighter natural tone
Fretboard Radius
9.5'' (241.3mm) vs 12'' (304.8mm)
Easier to play chords without muting strings
Value Score
69 vs 60
Better price/quality relationship

Reasons to Get
Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ over Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster

Decorative Top
Flame 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
Neck Profile
Patent Pending Spec. C Shaped vs U Shape
Comfortable neck that works for most people
Volume Knobs
2 vs 1
More volume control
Pickups
HH vs SS
High output without hum
Number of Frets
22 vs 21
Allows to reach higher notes
Nut Width
1.693'' (43mm) vs 1.615'' (41mm)
Less likely to mute strings by accident and more space for fingerstyle
Paint Finish
Nitro vs Poly
Thin finish that creates aging marks faster
Scale Length
24.6'' (624.8mm) vs 25.5'' (647.7mm)
Easier bending, shorter fret separation and warmer natural tone
Fretboard Radius
12'' (304.8mm) vs 9.5'' (241.3mm)
Flatter fretboard makes it easier to play single notes and bend

Other Key Differences
Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster vs Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ

Bridge Pickup
Fender Vintage-Style Single-Coil Tele vs DiMarzio Super Distortion DP100
Different Bridge Pickup
Neck Pickup
Fender Vintage-Style Single-Coil Tele vs DiMarzio Super Distortion DP100
Different Neck Pickup
Body Wood
Basswood vs Mahogany
Different Body Wood
Neck Wood
Maple vs Mahogany
Different Neck Wood
Fretboard Wood
Maple vs Ebony
Different Fretboard Wood
Headstock
6 vs 3-3
Different Headstock

Shared Features
Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster vs Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ

Nut Material
Bone
Same Nut Material
Strings
6
Same playing style
Body Type
Solid Body
Feedback free
Switch Positions
3
Same pickups versatility
Tone Knobs
1
Same tone control
Bridge
Fixed
Good sustain and needs no set-up
Pickups Power
Passive
Cleaner sound and no battery needed

Common Strengths

  • High-Quality Nut
  • From a High-Quality-Standards Country
  • Top Pickup Brand

Common Weaknesses

  • Pickup Alter Switch/Knob
  • Weight Relief
  • Locking Tuners
  • Stays in Tune (Evertune)
  • High-Quality Frets
  • Compound Radius Fretboard
  • Luminescent Sidedots
  • Strap Lock
  • 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • Active/Passive Preamp

Price History Comparison

Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Prices

SET PRICE ALERT

Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ Prices

    SET PRICE ALERT

    These are affiliate links. We may earn a fee if you purchase after clicking. These prices are prone to error. Make sure you're buying the right product after clicking on a link from our site. We are not liable if you buy the wrong product after following these links. As an Amazon Associate site we earn from qualifying purchases.

    Which One is Better for Beginners?

    The Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster meets 6 out of our 8 criteria items for beginner friendliness, while the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ meets only 5. 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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster
    • Comfortable shape
    • Easy-to-use bridge
    • Comfortable fretboard
    • Tall frets
    • Narrow nut
    • Comfortable neck
    • Short scale
    • Locking tuners

    New Player Friendliness

    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    • Comfortable shape
    • Easy-to-use bridge
    • Tall frets
    • Short scale
    • Comfortable neck
    • Comfortable fretboard
    • Narrow nut
    • Locking tuners

    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 the Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster

    Maple wood pattern used for guitar building
    Maple
    Basswood wood pattern used for guitar building
    Basswood

    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.

    Basswood is a lightweight type of wood that isn't as expensive as other popular choices for guitar building. It gives more power to the mid-range frequencies. Its color can vary from pale white to light brown. Find out more about Basswood.

    Woods Used in the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ

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

    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.

    Winner: Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ.

    Pickup Configuration

    The Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster has an SS configuration while the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ has HH pickups.

    SS is the classic Telecaster configuration. It's used mainly for playing clean or with low-gain distortion, and it's very popular for the country genre because of their brightness. It doesn't give you as much versatility as a Strat SSS configuration, but you might like the cleaner look of a guitar body with fewer pickups.

    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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster has a slight sound quality advantage when taking into account other factors like the type of pickups, magnet, position, etc.

    You can purchase similar pickups to the Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's and use them on any guitar:

    We found the same or similar pickups to the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ'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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster.

    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

    Both are equal when it comes to the pickup switching option.

    Neither of them come with some kind of coil split or pickup mod option. This makes both lacking in terms of versatility.

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster pickups switch and push knobs diagram
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's switch options
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ pickups switch and push knobs diagram
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ'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: Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster.

    Final Sound Quality Scores

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster
    Pickups 100
    Sustain 65
    Versatility 54
    Tuning Stability 70
    Sound 72
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    Pickups 90
    Sustain 85
    Versatility 51
    Tuning Stability 70
    Sound 74

    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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster compares to the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ.

    Country of Origin

    The manufacturing country can tell a lot about the build quality of an instrument. The Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster is built in Japan while the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ is made in United States.

    Japan has a long history of high-quality guitar building. Little has changed in terms of their manufacturing and quality control over the years. Many guitars made in this country can be compared—and even beat—others made in the US.

    The United States is considered one of the best electric guitar manufacturers in the world. A guitar made in this country is supposed to have world-class quality control. Nowadays, guitars made in other countries can beat some of the ones made in the US, but most of the time, this country offers the best you can get. Of course, that comes at a price.

    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.

    In this case, both have Bone nuts. It's a type of nut found in high-quality instruments. They sound similar to Ivory since they give a lot of sustain and a bright sound (at least when striking open strings). The only problem they can run into is that you may get a bone piece that simply doesn't sound as well as others because that's just how natural materials are.

    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.

    Both come with a similar bridge: 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.

    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: Tie.

    Tuners

    Both come with regular tuners. The Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's are Fender Vintage F Stamped while the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ's are Vintage Style Grover

    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.

    The Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster has 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.

    On the other hand, the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ comes with Set neck joint. This neck is tightly glued to the body. They give you the least versatility because you can't swap them for a neck that fits your hand better if you want to, unlike bolt-on necks. Some people think this gives more resonance and sustain, but there's no real difference if the bolt-on joint is well built.

    Winner: Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster.

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

    Strengths & Weaknesses
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster
    • Made in Japan
    • Bone Nut
    • Top Brand Pickups
    • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
    • No Locking Tuners
    • No Expensive Woods
    • 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 USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    • Made in United States
    • Expensive Wood
    • Bone Nut
    • Top Brand Pickups
    • Cheap Fret Wire (NS)
    • No Locking Tuners
    • 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

    Final Build Quality Scores

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster
    Quality of materials 66
    Features 50
    Quality Control 85
    Build Quality 67
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    Quality of materials 65
    Features 50
    Quality Control 100
    Build Quality 72

    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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Nut Width
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Nut Width
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ Nut Width
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ Nut Width

    The nut width will affect the separation between strings at the nut. In this comparison, the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ has the wider nut with 43mm (1.693'') vs 41mm (1.615''). This is a 2mm (0.078'') difference

    This means that it will be more difficult to do bar chords on the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ, 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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's Scale Length
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's Scale Length
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ's Scale Length
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ'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.

    The Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster has the longest scale: 25.5". The Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ is only 24.6" long. This is a 0.9'' (22.9mm) scale length difference.

    This longer scale means that the strings need more tension to get in tune. This is good if you want to avoid fret buzz, which can happen when the strings are too loose and touch the frets while vibrating. This is especially important when playing in lower tunings. This will also let you reduce the gap between fretboard and strings (low action) to make them easier to press down. However, this higher tension will also make it harder to perform bends and vibratos as the strings will feel stiffer.

    This also means that the frets have a longer separation between each other, so this will make it harder for people with smaller hands when playing some chord positions.

    Another characteristic of a longer scale is that it makes the guitar sound 'snappier' or brighter. This is due to the extra separation between harmonics and overtones produced by the tension. This influences tone more than any other factor (except the pickups).

    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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Neck Profile
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's neck profile
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ Neck Profile
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ'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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster has a U type of neck. This is also referred to as ''baseball neck'' because of its shape. It's usually thick, which is why some people with big hands like it. However, they can also be thin, similar to a C shape, but with more shoulders for a better grip.

    The Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ, on the other hand, has a C 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.

    Fretboard Radius

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Fingerboard Radius
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's Fingerboard radius
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ Fingerboard Radius
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ'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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's fingerboard radius is smaller, which means it's more curved than the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ'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 USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ.

    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 Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster favors large hands more than the Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ.

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster:
    Big Hands
    Small Hands
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ:
    Big Hands
    Small Hands

    Fret Size

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Frets Size
    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster's Frets Size
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ Frets Size
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ's Frets Size

    The Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ has Jumbo frets, which should be taller than the Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster'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 Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster
    Bending & Vibrato Ease 65
    Chord Playability 90
    Solo Playability 50
    Playability 68
    Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    Bending & Vibrato Ease 100
    Chord Playability 60
    Solo Playability 80
    Playability 80

    Specs Side-by-Side

    Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster vs Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    General Fender Made in Japan Limited International Color Telecaster Dean USA Patents Pending Z Flame Top TBZ
    Brand: Fender Dean
    Year: 2023 2019
    Configuration: SS HH
    Strings: 6 6
    Made in: Japan United States
    Series: Made in Japan Limited International USA
    Colors: Orange Burst
    Left-Handed Version: No No
    Body
    Type: Solid Body Solid Body
    Body Material: Basswood Mahogany
    Bridge: 3-Saddle Vintage-Style Strings-Through-Body Tele with Chrome Barrel Saddles Tune-O-Matic (With Z Plate)
    Neck
    Neck Joint: Bolt-On Set
    Tuners: Fender Vintage F Stamped Vintage Style Grover
    Fretboard: Maple Ebony
    Neck Material: Maple Mahogany
    Decoration: Black Dot Abalone dot
    Scale Size: 25.5" 24.6"
    Shape: U Shape Patent Pending Spec. C Shaped
    Frets: 21 Medium Jumbo Nickel Silver 22 Jumbo Nickel Silver
    Fretboard Radius: 9.5" 12"
    Nut: Bone Bone
    Nut Width: 41mm (1.615'') 43mm (1.693'')
    Electronics
    Bridge Pickup: Fender Vintage-Style Single-Coil Tele (Single Coil / Passive) DiMarzio Super Distortion DP100 (Humbucker / Passive)
    Middle Pickup:
    Neck Pickup: Fender Vintage-Style Single-Coil Tele (Single Coil / Passive) DiMarzio Super Distortion DP100 (Humbucker / Passive)
    Switch: 3 Way 3 Way
    Knobs: Dome Speed
    Pickup Mods: None None
    Volume Controls: 1 2
    Tone Controls: 1 1