2420T (2016 vs 2019 editions)

shnaggletooth

Electromatic
Nov 29, 2021
10
NJ
Hi, all. First time poster.

I just purchased a new 2420T yesterday from a local Guitar Center. On sale for $350 + tax. I was looking for a jazz box, so it seemed like a good deal.

Brought it back today for a setup, because there's annoying buzz around the bridge area of unknown origin. The work is supposed to begin tomorrow. However, did more research and I discovered that what I purchased was actually the 2016 release for the 2420T; there was a 2019 release which has upgraded pickups and a Laurel fretboard, among other changes. The big discount is apparently because they are clearing out their inventory of 2016 releases for the 2420 and 2420T. (They didn't exactly go out of their way to make this clear). I realized the difference when I saw images of 2420's with hump pearloid inlays, not the block ones like the the one I have.

So the question is: is the 2019 edition that much improved over the 2016? Among other differences:

2016: BroadTron pickups, rosewood fretwood
2019: Broad’Tron BT-2S, Laurel fretboard

Different neck profile for the 2019? Not sure

I have time to cancel the setup and just return the guitar for a full refund. For all I'm aware of, the setup might not solve the bridge buzz problem (2016 defect?)
 
Last edited:

Stingray70

Electromatic
Oct 18, 2021
33
Michigan
I had the same buzzing problem with my new 2420.. I posted what I did to fix it on here 3 or 4 weeks ago if you want to check it out.. Short answer is I replaced the bridge with one from a higher end model Gretsch that doesn't use a retaining wire to hold the bridge saddles..... It was a drop in easy fix.. Sounds great now.. better than ever... no buzz...
 

shnaggletooth

Electromatic
Nov 29, 2021
10
NJ
I had the same buzzing problem with my new 2420.. I posted what I did to fix it on here 3 or 4 weeks ago if you want to check it out.. Short answer is I replaced the bridge with one from a higher end model Gretsch that doesn't use a retaining wire to hold the bridge saddles..... It was a drop in easy fix.. Sounds great now.. better than ever... no buzz...
Is your's the 2016 or 2019?
 

Stingray70

Electromatic
Oct 18, 2021
33
Michigan
2019.. Pretty sure your bridge is the same as the one that came installed on mine... If its kinda skinny when viewed from the top and has the retaining wire its the same... The replacement is thicker, heavier, has no wire and has more intonation adjustment.. You also might try a roller bridge... The replacement from the higher end Gretsch models will fit on your existing wooden base and posts...
 

Stingray70

Electromatic
Oct 18, 2021
33
Michigan
It sounds like you got a great deal on the guitar. I wouldn't return it if it was mine. The rosewood fretboard on the 2016s is usually considered to be more desirable than the later models Laurel. Not 100% sure if the pickups are the same or not.. However, don't be surprised if they don't get the bridge to completely stop rattling during the "setup" or if the rattle comes back after a while.
The many "fixes" techs use to quiet abr-1 style bridges are often temporary... especally if u ever need to adjust it... The best way to solve this problem is to replace it with a better bridge....
 
Last edited:

Desirsar

Gretschie
Jun 9, 2021
241
Lincoln, NE
The one I got from the Guitar Center Black Friday sale has a serial number for May of 2021, so I'm assuming they weren't making the older version by then, but it still has the block inlays. Actually searching as I'm typing this, looks like the 2019 2420 had hump pearloid, but the 2019 2420T still had block. I'm sticking to guessing by my serial number. (I don't know the visual difference between the older and newer Broadtrons.)

I had a rattle on the G string saddle, I poked at it, it slipped a fraction of a millimeter, no more rattle. I'm also replacing the bridge eventually, but not before the pickups or tuners.
 

shnaggletooth

Electromatic
Nov 29, 2021
10
NJ
The one I got from the Guitar Center Black Friday sale has a serial number for May of 2021, so I'm assuming they weren't making the older version by then, but it still has the block inlays. Actually searching as I'm typing this, looks like the 2019 2420 had hump pearloid, but the 2019 2420T still had block. I'm sticking to guessing by my serial number. (I don't know the visual difference between the older and newer Broadtrons.)

I had a rattle on the G string saddle, I poked at it, it slipped a fraction of a millimeter, no more rattle. I'm also replacing the bridge eventually, but not before the pickups or tuners.
The block inlay is only for the 2016 model, or at least, Guitar Center's sale was for the 2016 model (with the 2019 still priced separately at $599). Here's a pic of the 2019 2420T:

L47594000003000-00-500x500.jpg
 

Desirsar

Gretschie
Jun 9, 2021
241
Lincoln, NE
That's what I was getting from my search results too, but it still strikes me as odd that they were making the older model all the way into 2021. Any hardware issue isn't a big deal to me, I was planning on swapping out most of it anyway.
 

Stingray70

Electromatic
Oct 18, 2021
33
Michigan
Guitar Center frequently arranges with manufacturers to make special production runs exclusively for Guitar Center. This could be (likely is) what is causing this confusion. Block inlays and limited colors could be a means to get the price down. I have an old Ibanez RG that was was one of the Guitar Center only specials and was only offered in black. I looked at the current GC sale and found the model in question.. This is a great deal, especially with the Bigsby which is typically a $100 option.
 
Last edited:

Desirsar

Gretschie
Jun 9, 2021
241
Lincoln, NE
Guitar Center frequently arranges with manufacturers to make special production runs exclusively for Guitar Center. This could be (likely is) what is causing this confusion. Block inlays and limited colors could be a means to get the price down. I have an old Ibanez RG that was was one of the Guitar Center only specials and was only offered in black. I looked at the current GC sale and found the model in question.. This is a great deal, especially with the Bigsby which is typically a $100 option.

That's another reason it was too good of a deal to pass up, that it was by far the cheapest hollowbody with a Bigsby they carried, and was nearly the cheapest hollowbody period. The build quality of Gretsches has a pretty high floor even when the electronics are cheap, and I wouldn't trust that in any of the other budget brands in the regular price range, never mind the sale price.
 

tmcq65

Gretschie
Nov 10, 2021
138
Eastern Tennessee
...The build quality of Gretsches has a pretty high floor even when the electronics are cheap, and I wouldn't trust that in any of the other budget brands in the regular price range....
This can't be said enough. Mine is probably the best quality and attention to detail of any instrument I have purchased. Every detail is excellent...binding, finish, fretwork, inlays... everything.
 

Mark W

Country Gent
Jun 6, 2008
1,934
Central Florida
I wouldn't worry about it. As already stated a new bridge is an easy fix and I can't feel much of a difference in rosewood versus Laurel but maybe I am insensitive?
 

shnaggletooth

Electromatic
Nov 29, 2021
10
NJ
Followup (so far): As recommended by the Guitar Center tech, gently tightened up the individual saddles -- but the intonation is now off, with fret buzzing, especially along string 'G'. Then yesterday, the Bigsby handle got loose and fell off. As far as I can tell, the only way to reattach it is to remove the strings to allow the Bigsby axis to swing backwards. Finally, got to play the 2019 edition, and the newer BT-2S have more definition (these earlier Broad'Tron's are kinda muddy). The only thing that has gone 'right' is that when I tightened up the saddle screws, I didn't make anything permanent by applying Crazy Glue or Lock-Tite (as recommended to keep the screws from undoing and causing rattling again).

Nevertheless, despite all the frustration, I haven't given up on this guitar just yet (have until Jan 31 to return it). Despite the factory-signed tag, the guitar will now need a pro setup (since the intonation is off), and a tech would be able to put the Bigsby back together. I figure that whatever new guitar I purchase will always need a setup, anyway, and that's just an expected cost.

As for the pickups: I called Gretsch (actually Fender Corp), and they could not give me any information on how to obtain the BT-2S pickups. The rep sent me a link with a bunch of parts suppliers, but not one of them has the BT-2S PuPs listed (are these just not available??). I got this guitar as a potential jazz box, and after playing around with an Electromatic model at GC, I can hear that the Filter'Tron's might do very well. Are the Filter'Trons a drop-in replacement for the Broad'Trons?

Finally, also got a chance to try out the G2657T model. Same Broad'Trons, but they're positioned lower into the body, so there's less 'boom' on the lower E string. This is a double-cutaway guitar, has the Bigsby, and only $50 more than the 2420T. Might exchange the 2420T for the 2657T, and if anyone here might have an opinion on the 2657T.
 
Last edited:

Randy99CL

Country Gent
Feb 17, 2020
2,094
Albuquerque
I own two 2019 G2622 Streamliners bought new in 2020. At that time many pics of those models still showed the gold knobs though they were phasing them out for black. Both mine came with black knobs.

As I wrote recently in another thread, I've not seen anywhere you can buy the BT-2s pickups, I don't believe they are sold separately. They are standard HB sized so there are a million available that will fit as is.
All these pickups are height-adjustable so if one sounds boomy it can be lowered.

Guitar Fetish sells many different designs of good-rated pickups that are not expensive. Lots of them will fit right in.
GFS Guitar Pickups (guitarfetish.com)

I've been considering upgrading to the Blacktop Filtertrons (from the Korean Electromatics) but they are not the same size so not a direct fit.
But they are only $32 each with rings and screws. Angela Instruments LLC - Gretsch and Bigsby Parts - Page 2
 
Last edited:


Top