Fender has unveiled the latest entry into its Parallel Universe range, entitled the Spark-O-Matic Jazzmaster. Like all Parallel Universe models, it combines design ideas from disparate ends of the guitar world – in this case, a Fender Jazzmaster and the triple-mini-humbucker layout of a Firebird.
The guitar is constructed with a three-piece body, with a mahogany centre block and chambered ash wings. Loaded into the centre block are three Seymour Duncan Mini Humbuckers, while the lower wing houses a five-way blade switch and master volume and tone controls. The neck is maple, with a 9.5-inch radius rosewood fretboard and a satin lacquer finish. Hinting at the guitar’s Firebird inspiration is a tobacco sunburst nitro lacquer finish on the body.
Hardware consists of an American Pro Jazzmaster bridge and vibrato tailpiece, with a set of ClassicGear 18:1 tuners at the headstock end for more stability.
The five-way blade switch means you can pair the middle pickup with either the bridge or the neck position, or select any one of the mini-humbuckers on their own for a wide range of sounds. Mini humbuckers, compared to full-sized humbuckers, have a ‘crisper’ sound with a bit more top-end – they’re often said to be a middle ground between humbuckers and P90s.