Don’t start by plugging it into a loud amp and lots of pedals but listen to the acoustics, the natural resonance and sustain.
Although a soft wood, it has a rich and warm tone with a smooth sustain.Basswood has long been favoured by jazz musicians and it can also help to balance a bright punchy maple neck.Some like thick necks and some prefer a thinner contour.Some like the vintage glossy nitro finish and some prefer the more modern satin finish.This has nothing to do with what models you choose or how much they cost.
You could very well build the guitar yourself from scrap metal but what’s important is that you’re comfortable with holding the guitar in your hands, playing it and the sound it creates.
Buying a new guitar is a considerable investment for most of us.
To get the best possible experience, it is therefore important that you’ve done some research and decided on what kind of model you’re looking for.
Pickups can easily be replaced for a more desired tone but you can’t fix a dead resonance.
Consider it a bonus if the stock pickups are to your liking.
Keep in mind though that there’s a difference between a setup that you don’t like and a bad setup caused by poor assembly and parts. Over the last decade, Squire has regained much of its old reputation of producing high quality instruments for even the tightest budgets.