If you’re in the market for a Stratocaster, or want to upgrade your guitar’s bridge, then you’ll need to know the pros and cons of 2 and 6 point tremolo systems. In this article, I’ll take you through a comparison between these two bridge types so you can decide which option is best for you.
The Quick Answer
A 2-point tremolo bridge is easier to set up and makes it easier to adjust the guitar’s action compared to a 6-point tremolo. A 6-point tremolo makes the guitar more resonant, although the difference is minimal. Two-point tremolos feel smoother and more responsive than six-point tremolos.
|2-Point Tremolo||6-Point Tremolo|
|Easier to set-up and adjust||More resonant|
|Better tuning stability||Has the vintage look|
|More responsive and smoother||Easier to add very subtle effects|
6 Point Tremolo Bridges
The 6-point tremolo system was featured on the earliest Fender Stratocaster and is still used on some models today including the American Performer, American Original and Squier Classic Vibe guitars. A 6-point tremolo has 6 screws which attach the bridge to the body of the guitar.
- More resonant
- Looks like a vintage Strat
- Harder to adjust
- Not very smooth
2 Point Tremolo Bridges
The 2-point tremolo system is more modern and is seen on many Stratocasters today including the Fender American Professional, American Ultra and Player models. The 2-point tremolo system uses two screws to mount the bridge onto the body. The screws are located on opposite sides of the bridge.
- Easier to adjust
- More responsive
- Not as resonant
- Doesn’t look “vintage”
Comparing the Two Types of Tremolo Bridge
Now we’ve been through an overview of both types of tremolo bridge, let’s look at some specific comparisons. I’ll be taking a closer look at the following:
- Tuning Stability
- Action Adjustment
- Tone Difference
The 6-point tremolo system feels stiffer and less sensitive than the 2-point tremolo. For more aggressive tremolo use, the 2-point is usually the best option. However, some players find the 2-point tremolo too responsive and sensitive and prefer the more subtle effects you can create more easily with the 6-point trem.
Although both types of tremolo system will stay in tune if set up properly, the 2-point tremolo system is usually better at staying in tune. The 2-point tremolo has less contact between the bridge and body, since it only has 2 mounting points compared to 6. Hence, when the tremolo is at a neutral rest position, it is more likely to return to a consistent position.
The two point tremolo is easier to set up because there are fewer points to adjust, which some players prefer as they find it less fussy to work with to get the ideal setup. If you are looking for a floating tremolo, the 2-point system is particularly easier to set up.
With a 2-point tremolo you can raise and lower the bridge making it easier to adjust the action of the guitar. With a 6-point tremolo this is more difficult and the best way to adjust the action would be to adjust the saddle height and neck relief.
There is a bit of a debate as to how much of a difference the bridge design makes in terms of the tone of guitar. Fender Strat purists often prefer the 6-point tremolo design because it has more additional points of contact with the body of the guitar to help channel the frequencies of the strings into the body, resulting in a more resonant tone.
However, there are many other factors which impact the tone of the guitar far more than this. If you are torn between two Strats, one has a 2-point trem and the other has a 6-point trem, then you should play them back to back in the store to work out which sounds best to you.
If you’re looking for an iconic vintage Strat look, then a 6-point tremolo will look the part more than a 2-point tremolo. Some players think that the 2-point trem looks a bit cleaner compared to the 6-screw design. However, this is all personal preference!
Here are some images so you can decide which you prefer the look of.
Which Type of Tremolo Comes as Stock?
Here is a list of Fender and Squier Strat models and the bridge systems whether they have a 2 or 6 point trem. There have been many variants of these models over the decades so for simplicity I’ll just be listing the 2022 models.
- Squier Affinity
- Squier Contemporary
- Fender Player
- Fender Player Plus
- Fender Vintera Modified
- Fender American Professional II
- Fender American Ultra
- Fender Jeff Beck
- Squier Classic Vibe
- Squier Bullet
- Fender Vintera
- Fender Jimi Hendrix
- Fender American Performer
- Fender American Original
- Fender Eric Johnson
- Fender Stevie Ray Vaughan
Here are some more articles you might find useful:
In the market for a new guitar? I’ve written a complete buyer’s guide for electric guitars which takes you through all the things you need to consider and a step-by-step method to narrowing down your selection and choosing the best option. Here is a link to the article.