G6120T - Vintage select - Balance

Discussion in 'THE Gretsch Discussion Forum' started by KA1J, Feb 2, 2019.

  1. KA1J

    KA1J Electromatic

    Jan 9, 2019

    I just bought a 2017 G6120T - Vintage select from an auction. It is seemingly mint, not a scratch anywhere. I haven't used one before, my previous electric was a 65 strat with totally different pickups than TV Jones Classics. I tried it with a Dakins Mic Pre 1 to get an idea of tone and I noticed the lower strings had a bite that the tops didn't. I then tried it in an old Gibson amp that isn't the best but noticed the same characteristic, the G-high E side was weaker than D- low E side, with the low E & A having a solid growl like an angry bear.

    I had expected the sound to be balanced across the strings, I tried the various options to get the different pickup selections to mod this but it seems like this is the instrument. Is this normal for these pickups & guitar or do I need to have the pickups adjusted? I see a Sweetwater cert in the package & they do a fine job of setup.

  2. BuddieGreen

    BuddieGreen Gretschie

    Sep 3, 2018
    indiana usa
    sounds like the poles may need adjusted
    Bertotti likes this.
  3. loudnlousy

    loudnlousy Friend of Fred

    Oct 18, 2015
    The tone should be perfectly even over the strings. Maybe you should experiment with the hight of the polepieces.
  4. gretscher09

    gretscher09 Electromatic

    Apr 18, 2009
    Check the height of the pickup case to the strings, then adjust pole pieces if necessary. TV Jones website has instructions and a diagram. Make sure the bridge base is seated well on the guitar top (it can shift off the pins during shipping). Turn up the treble on the amp? How old are the strings? Just some quick thoughts.
  5. wildeman

    wildeman Gretschified

    May 10, 2015
    What pickups do you have? It sounds like pure nickel strings might cure that as the wound strings have slightly less magnetic pull.
  6. Synchro

    Synchro The artist formerly known as: Synchro Staff Member

    Jun 2, 2008
    Admin Post
    TV Jones recommends not adjusting individual pole pieces, but adjusting the height of the entire pickup. Sometimes it requires thicker foam rubber pads, underneath the pickup. These are readily available.
    audept likes this.
  7. KA1J

    KA1J Electromatic

    Jan 9, 2019
    Folks, thanks for the replies. I'm going to hold off on adjusting the pickups till I explore some more. I just tested the tubes in the amp (All 9 of them) and they're all within normal limits but there are enough different values I can't think of them as matched. That may be an issue. I need to check the caps and see if they're OK, being 44 years old, the caps may have dried out. If any are off I'll replace them with modern ones. I'm going to deoxit the controls and all the plugs. If that doesn't make a change in the balance, I'll adjust the pickups.

    It seems like the pickups would be off, the way it sounds right now but the paperwork that came with it shows Sweetwater did its 55 point check on it for the person I bought it from, and they would have likely caught it if the pickups were not right.

    I'm not sure what strings are on it but they look to be nickel and the middle is wound. The high E mics out to be .11.

    I'll let you know how it's coming along.
  8. Henry

    Henry Gretschified

    Apr 9, 2014
    Adjust the pickups, it's easier than checking tubes, will improve the sound and completely reversible if it doesn't. I doubt sweetwater checks for this as it a Gretsch pickup thing.
  9. KA1J

    KA1J Electromatic

    Jan 9, 2019
    Folks, just a late follow-up for anyone who finds this thread in a future search. I did not adjust the pickups after all. While I did not like the sound of balance with the amplifier I used with the Gretsch, I played the guitar through several different amps and it came alive with a Mesa Boogie F-50. The people where I found the F-50 loved the sound of the Gibson amp and we worked out a deal and for me paying $300 cash & the Gibson, we traded and everyone was happy.

    The sound is to me, perfect and every note has an equal volume. I did retube it with 60's tubes and to my ear, the clean is arguably even more so and the notes remain balanced across the fingerboard.

    So... problem solved. Before adjusting the pickups, it's a good idea to try a different set of amps, your solution may reside with that.
    Henry and audept like this.
  10. Henry

    Henry Gretschified

    Apr 9, 2014
    Sweet. Another convert to Gretsch + Mesa.[​IMG]
  11. KA1J

    KA1J Electromatic

    Jan 9, 2019

    Here's my kids.
    Henry likes this.
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