USB-equipped guitars aren't unheard of, but Fender and Apple are teaming up to bring a low-cost option to the hordes of iOS and Mac users who have dreams of cutting their masterpiece in GarageBand. Fender is now selling a USB-equipped Squier Stratocaster directly through the Apple Store for $199.99 — that's a low price for any guitar, not to mention one equipped with USB. Of course, for that price, you shouldn't expect too much: Fender's Squier line has long been aimed squarely at those picking up a guitar for the first time. Still, it's not a bad one-stop solution for the uninitiated who want an easy way to plug a guitar into their computer or iOS device.
The only things that distinguish this guitar from other members of the Squier family are the Type B mini-USB port and headphone jack you'll find in addition to the standard 1/4-inch output jack. The guitar also includes cables designed for hooking up to a Mac or PC, as well as a 30-pin connector cable that links the guitar up to older iOS devices. Unfortunately, there's no Lightning cable included, so you'll need to pick up Apple's 30-pin to Lightning adapter to use this with the latest iOS devices. While serious musicians will look past this new offering without a second thought, it's not a bad option for a kid's first guitar — or for those who want a beater around the studio to record quick GarageBand demos.
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