Gretsch G5620T-CB LE Georgia Green

Discussion in 'Electromatic Gretsch Forum' started by Spidey, Sep 16, 2021.

  1. Spidey

    Spidey Gretschie

    286
    Jan 14, 2015
    Pacific Northwest
    I've found one of these for sale and I'm considering looking at it but its a long drive. I was hoping someone could tell me what to expect or consider, before I commit to the drive?

    I have a G5420T with TVJones Classics and love it. Maybe that would be a good one to compare it to if you have opinions to offer? I have other semi's & hollow body guitars but been wanting another Gretsch for a long time. I think this one will be different tone and feel, so that's a plus.

    One thing I've been looking for is what the fret board is made of? Is it Laurel, Rosewood or Laurel Rosewood? It is a lighter color. I find info saying it's one or then the other but nothing definite.

    How about the tone? The videos I hear sound a bit harsh or thin while others are full and clear. I don't trust my ears here. How do you like yours? Would you buy it again knowing what you do now? What genre do you think it nails the best? ANY help or input would be awesome. Thanks for reading!
     
    section2 likes this.
  2. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    I love my 5620. It's definitely a different animal from a 5420—it won't feel redundant if you have both. The 5620 has a solid, non-chambered center block, so it sustains quite well. It has some of the airy tone of a hollow body, but it can respond very much like a solid body if you want it to.

    I'm a big fan of the Super HiloTron neck pickup. It's a humbucker but it's voiced to sound like a single coil: warm but clear, with plenty of snap and definition. It sounds great clean.

    The Blacktop Filtertron at the bridge is very bright. It can get ice-picky, but that can be tamed with a bit of tweaking. It takes distortion very well. It's easy to get it into Malcolm Young territory. Between the two pups, there's quite a bit of versatility. They aren't TV Jones, of course—you will notice a step down in articulation and clarity from your TVJs—but I'm still happy with them. Especially the Super Hilo.

    My 5620 is very well made; the fit and finish are outstanding.

    The neck feels nice in my hands. Not skinny, not fat, with a bit of a wider shoulder to give it some presence. The fretboard radius is 12.5" (as opposed to Gretsch's typical 12"). I don't feel a noticeable difference.

    There are a few things to be aware of:
    • The solid center block makes it a heavy beast. I think mine weighs somewhere around 9 or 10 pounds. A wide elastic strap helps.
    • The stock plastic nut isn't great. I'd plan on replacing it. (I went with a Zero Glide, which I love, but a Tusq nut would get the job done just fine.)
    • The tension roller on the B70 makes for stiff Bigsby action and can cause tuning problems. I ran my strings overtop of the roller, which helped. A BiggsFix would be an even better solution. I eventually replaced the B70 with a B6C, partially to improve the feel and tuning stability, and partially because V-cut Bigsbies just look cool.
    • I didn't like the stock tone pots; I found that they did very little for the first 90% of the rotation and then went straight to mud at the end. I replaced them with audio-taper no-load CTS pots. This wasn't strictly necessary; it was really just a matter of personal taste.
    • Some people have raised concerns about the wide headstock causing tuning issues by creating a sharp break angle at the nut. I don't find that it's a problem. I haven't had any tuning issues since I've replaced the nut and sorted out the Bigsby.
    Overall: I think the 5620 is a fantastic guitar. Mine still gets plenty of playing time even though I've added a 6120 Jr to the stable. I wouldn't hesitate to buy it again.
     
    Spidey likes this.
  3. new6659

    new6659 Country Gent

    What @section2 says^. It is on the heavier side, like an ES137 or similar but sounds and plays great. Looks fantastic as well.
     
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  4. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    Oh, I almost forgot to answer the question about the fretboard. Mine is rosewood.
     
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  5. new6659

    new6659 Country Gent

    Mine is rosewood as well, and a very beautiful piece, at that.
     
    section2 likes this.
  6. Spidey

    Spidey Gretschie

    286
    Jan 14, 2015
    Pacific Northwest
    =======================================================================

    Man, thank you guys for coming through!!! Seriously that's so what I needed. And section2, thanks for all the great tips and excellent references/review! My hats off to how well laid out that was (A +).

    I was concerned about the Bigsby but forgot to ask. I've heard about the swap on those, but never got around to finding out if the original holes would be covered or not? I was looking for something with a B6 like mine without being the same flavor - like you said, redundant. but it proved harder than I expected in my budget range. Maybe if I was more patient...

    Is the headstock bigger than the G5420T or about the same? Haven't heard anyone mention the string angle on the nut - though I have been under a rock for a while I'll admit - that issue does makes sense.

    And a rosewood board,.. heck ya! That's a plus for me.

    The runner up for me was the Gretsch G5657T Center Block jr. which I think is a little smaller body and could be nice, but the Hilo-Tron pickup in the 5620T caught my interest. Nut & Pots are no problem to switch out, cool. My 5420 had that same 90% you described too - wasn't my taste. In the end it seemed like the G5620T would be fun to play as is, until I got around to upgrading a few of the bigger things down the road? I didn't see many threads of people loving the G5657T like I thought I would. I'm probably wrong, IDK. But that Georgia Green makes me do a double take every time.
     
  7. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    There's one small hole in the top that the B6 doesn't quite cover. Half of the hole remains visible, but only if you're looking at it up close from a certain angle. It doesn't bother me.

    It depends on when your 5420 was made. The early 5420s had the same wide headstock with "Electromatic" printed on it. The later ones (starting in 2016, I believe) have a narrower headstock without the Electromatic logo.

    I love the Junior body size on the 5657—it's light and comfortable to play. The 5620 does have the Super Hilo, though, which is a great little pickup that's no longer available. I don't think you could go wrong with either guitar.

    Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2021
  8. Sid Nitzerglobin

    Sid Nitzerglobin Country Gent

    Jun 8, 2015
    fROMOHIO
    Mine from several years ago was a great guitar stock & even better modded up. Mine has a really nice rosewood board. Definitely not redundant to a 5420 for me, due to the full length spruce centerblock it's got a much more direct attack & a different feel to it.

    The big down side IME is the weight. Mine is at least 10.5 lbs. Not sure if they've lightened up the newer ones on average or not.

    Comparing my 5620 to the couple earlier MiC 5655 Jr. style examples I played I found the 5620 to be a nicer feeling guitar, but YMMV. The Jr.s certainly were a good deal lighter so they have that going for them.
     
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2021
    section2 likes this.
  9. Spidey

    Spidey Gretschie

    286
    Jan 14, 2015
    Pacific Northwest

    Oh okay, looks I have the wider headstock. No issues yet, but now that I've said that,.. it'll surely happen. Doah!


    I'm mostly a chair player,.. I'm old. So the weight probably wouldn't bother me if it delivers and feels good, unless it was neck heavy or something. Having a hard time deciding but favoring the 5620. The thing that throws me on both, is the Bigsby. Though I will say, I have one on my Reverend PA-1, and it's a peach. Never had a problem, I keep it smooth and lubed. But it also came with a roller bridge, so maybe that's why? I was planning on changing that bridge out with a one piece (bar) but it's grown on me. That's been one of those guitars that came ready to play and haven't done anything to it. Wish I could do that again.

    Hmmm, maybe that's another thread. ...

    Will post a pic if I get it. Really appreciate it guys, have a good one!
     
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  10. Spidey

    Spidey Gretschie

    286
    Jan 14, 2015
    Pacific Northwest

    Quick question, how wide is your 5620T lower bout, of body? Can't find any specs on that. wondering if it's slightly smaller or same width as my 5420T?
     
  11. Sid Nitzerglobin

    Sid Nitzerglobin Country Gent

    Jun 8, 2015
    fROMOHIO
    I hear you on the B70, I wound up going for the B6C V cut & a copper Compton on mine & I think they made it a lot more what I wanted out of it, happily the 2 worked together w/o needing a tension bar & w/ good enough intonation for me:
    [​IMG]
    I wound up w/ pretty great coverage of the stock B70 screw holes all around some how.

    If I never needed/wanted to take mine out of the house I'd be hanging onto it for sure, but since my back has decided it's going to be persistently hosed & I need to get rid of some guitars to free up some space I decided it will be moving along some time in the near future as soon as I can figure out where I put the stock B70 & take it mostly back to stock before it goes up on the block.
     
  12. LongJohn

    LongJohn Synchromatic

    744
    Apr 22, 2016
    Queens, NY
    I've got the red version, purchased new and one of my favorites. The 5620 pairs well with a Nashville Tele, many happy hours with those 2 and a looper. Enjoy yours.
     
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  13. section2

    section2 Country Gent

    Dec 21, 2016
    Toronto
    It's 16" wide at the lower bout. It's the same width as the 5420, but with a shallower body at 1.75" deep.

    No neck-heaviness on mine. It's nicely balanced.

    Good luck with the choice!
     
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  14. Spidey

    Spidey Gretschie

    286
    Jan 14, 2015
    Pacific Northwest
    That's gorgeous! Exactly how I would do mine too, including the Chet Atkins arm.


    Thanks! I think the 5620's the way to go between sound & feel. I'm doing some last minute looking around to make sure there isn't something else out there before I go. I imagined a more trans color with wood showing but I like the design, solid block and color of this 5620 - something different but still a Gretsch. Won't be buying any guitars for a while so I'm makin' this one count.
     
    section2 likes this.
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