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Gretsch Electromatic guitars vs proline models

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Gretsch Electromatic Guitars vs Proline Models

 

“That Great Gretsch Sound” the famed slogan of Gretsch guitars! Gretsch was a company founded by Friedrich Gretsch, a German Immigrant whom opened up a shop in Brooklyn, New York in 1883. The company made famous for its Guitar and Drum designs and made its stamp in music history with the 50’s and 60’s Rock ‘n Roll and Rockabilly boom. Some famous artists include Georgie Harrison, Bo Diddley, Chet Atkins and Charlie Watts the list continues well into the modern day music era with artists such as Bono and Rockabilly revival legend Brian Setzer.

I started looking into Gretsch guitars back in 2013, the proline models have always caught my fancy but they come with hefty price tag. For me the infamous sound of its pickup’s and the rock ‘n Roll bling look caught my fancy!

I started looking into the Electromatic series as a more affordable option to purchasing a Gretsch guitar.

I was able to get my hands on G5445T Double Jet and a G5422TDC Trans Red Hollowbody, I originally wanted the snow white crest colour, but that specific colour is more expensive possibly due to the fact that it resembles the iconic white falcon. Regardless I was quite impressed with the character of the sound that they produced along with the affordable price!

With Gretsch guitars a big roleplayer in the sound comes from their pickups. The two above mentioned Electromatic models and the whole Electromatic G544x line come standard with Black-top Filtertron pickups, which differ to the High sensitive Filtertrons that come with the pro-line Gretsch’s. The Black-tops filtertrons stem from ppickup designs in an era in Gretsch’s history between 1970 and 1981, where the company was owned by Baldwin a music industry giant at the time. These pickups had higher output than their predecessors and they have revamped on the original pickup designs from that era for the current Electromatic series.  Some of the proline models such as the G6136T White Falcon contain High Sensitive Filtertron pickups which use alnico magnets which are slightly more expensive than the ceramic magnets used in the blacktop filtertrons and they create a more authentic vintage sound.

For more info regarding pickups take a look at this Blog on the official Gretsch site, a discussion of the different types of pickups used in Gretsch guitars and the eras they stem from http://www.gretschguitars.com/blog/gretschtech/gretschtech-picking-the-pickups/

 

 

I have placed the features of the Electromatic G5445T Double Jet vs the high range 6128 Duo Jet, so you can see the difference in specs and wood etc, similar construction and look, but there are characteristic differences.

Features G5445T Double Jet

·         Body Shape: Jet™

·         Body Style: Chambered Double-Cutaway

·         Body: Basswood, Gloss Urethane Finish, Arched Maple Top

·         Pickguard: White Pearloid w/ Gretsch® Logo

·         Body Binding: 1-Ply White

·         Neck: Maple, Gloss Urethane Finish

·         Frets: 22, Medium Jumbo

·         Position Inlays: Pearloid Hump-Block Inlays

·         Fingerboard: Rosewood

·         Finger Board Radius: 12" Radius (305 mm)

·         Nut: Synthetic Bone

·         Nut Width: 1.6875" (43 mm)

·         Scale Length: 24.6" (62.5 cm)

·         Pickups: "Black Top" Filter'Tron™ Bridge Pickup

·         "Black Top" Filter'Tron™ Neck Pickup

·         Pickup Switching: 3-Position Toggle: Position 1. Bridge Pickup, Position 2. Bridge

·         and Neck Pickups, Position 3. Neck Pickup

·         Controls: Volume 1. (Neck Pickup), Volume 2. (Bridge Pickup), Master

·         Volume, Master Tone

·         Bridge: Anchored Adjusto-Matic™ Bridge

·         Hardware: Chrome

·         Tuning Keys: Enclosed Vintage Style

·         Knobs: "G" Arrow Knobs

·         Strings: D'Addario® XL110 Regular Light, NPS (.010-.046 Gauges)

·         Unique Features: Double-Cutaway Two-Tone Body Color Scheme, “Black Top” Filter’Tron™

 

Features G6128 George Harrison Duo Jet

·         Body Shape: Jet™

·         Body Style: Semi-Hollow Body

·         Body Top: 3-Ply Arched Laminated Maple

·         Back and Sides: Semi-Hollow Chambered Mahogany

·         Body Width: 13.37" (33.96 cm)

·         Body Depth: 2" (50.8 mm)

·         Body Finish: Gloss Urethane

·         Neck: 1-Piece Mahogany

·         Neck Binding: White, 1-Ply

·         Frets: 22, Standard

·         Headstock Binding: White, 1-Ply

·         Position Inlays: Pearloid Hump-Block Inlays

·         Fingerboard: Rosewood

·         Finger Board Radius: 12" Radius (305 mm)

·         Nut: Bone

·         Nut Width: 1.6875" (43 mm)

·         Scale Length: 24.6" (62.5 cm)

·         Pickups: 2 DynaSonic™ Single-Coil

·         Controls: Volume 1. (Neck Pickup), Volume 2. (Bridge Pickup), Master

·         Volume, Master Tone

·         Bridge: "Rocking" Bar Bridge with Rosewood Base

·         Hardware: Chrome-Plated

·         Tuning Keys: Grover® V98CM Sta-Tite™ Die-cast Tuners

·         Strings: D'Addario® XL110 Regular Light, NPS (.010-.046 Gauges)

 

 

Also a comparison between the Electromatic hollowbody and the high range Falcon.

 

FeaturesG5422TDC

 

·         Bound double-cutaway hollowbody

·         Sound-post bracing

·         Elegant bound f holes.

·         Maple neck

·         Bound rosewood fingerboard with 22 medium jumbo frets and hump-block pearloid inlays

·         Silver plexi pickguard

·         “Black Top” Filter’Tron™ pickups

·         Three-position pickup switch

·         Classic “G” arrow control knobs

·         Rosewood-based Adjusto-Matic™ bridge

·         Bigsby®-licensed B60 vibrato tailpiece

·         Vintage-style open-back tuners

 

FeaturesG6136T White Falcon

 

·         Hollowbody

·         Single cutaway

·         25-1/2" (648mm) scale length

·         Arched laminated maple top

·         Laminated Maple Body, 17" Wide, 2-3/4" Deep

·         3-Piece Maple neck

·         2 High Sensitive Filter'Tron Pickups

3-Position Toggle: Position 1. Bridge Pickup, Position 2. Bridge and Neck Pickups, Position 3.                            Neck Pickup

Controls: Volume 1. (Neck Pickup), Volume 2. (Bridge Pickup), Master Volume, 3-Position Toggle Master Toneswitch                                                                    

·         1-11/16" (43mm) nut width

·         Ebony fretboard, 12" radius (305mm)

·         Ebony-Based Space-Control Roller-Bridge

·         Bigsby B6GB Vibrato Tailpiece

·         Gold-plated hardware

·         Gloss urethane finish

·         22 frets

·         Grover® Imperial Gold-Plated Die-cast Tuners

·         Includes case

 

Unique Features:

·         V-shaped falcon headstock with vertical Gretsch logo

·         Hump block mother-of-pearl inlay position markers with feather engraving

·         Gold-sparkle fingerboard and headstock bindings

·         Oversized bound F-holes

·         Multiple gold-sparkle body bindings

·         Gold-sparkle inlaid Gretsch logo on headstock

·         Gold plexi dove-style pickguard with falcon detail

·         Knurled strap retainer knobs

·         Adjustable truss rod

 

I have been playing on electromatics for the past two years, I used them for solo instrumentals, in a jazz trio and a Rock/folk project and I can say have had no complaints the only reason I would swap them out would be potentially for a higher range model. Not only that but they are starting to develop a cult following in their own right, owning one of these may prove to have a major re-sell value in the future ;)

I hope this blog has provided you with some information into the comparison of the Electormatic Gretsch range against some of the iconic pro-line models. I will leave you with a couple of reviews of each so you can hear and see the sounds! And a link to a look inside the Gretsch custom shop on the official page J

 

Gretsch Electromatic G5442TDCG review

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=122ZkkCdPFI

Gretsch Electromatic Double Jet

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ruyxbsjcaKc

 

Higher range Models showcased by Rockabilly guitarist Marco di Maggio

 

White Falcon

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2R0WS31jet8

Gretsch Duo-Jet Relic

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVIFnyV_8pg

 

A look inside Gretsch custom shop from the official Gretsch page.

http://www.gretschguitars.com/features/customshop

Last modified onSaturday, 31 January 2015 11:53
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