Iconic Broad’Tron pickups, simple pickup switching layout and a stylish hard-tail make for a comfortable play and great looker in a few different colours. While admittedly a more affordable Gretsch, the G5222s aren’t a sacrifice in playability, sound or specs, offering a comfortable play, versatile sound and classic look. These guitars would sit nicely in a myriad of bands and groups, offering super crisp cleans to harsh grit and wompy-jazz tones. Many guitars claim to be all-rounders, but it’s not often that you find something like the G5222.
Head to toe, the Electromatic G5222 is fairly standard Grestch, with specs to match even their more high-end guitars. The Electromatics sit in the middle of the Gretsch range, above the Streamliners but below the Pro Series, so these may very well be the best bang for buck you’ll get. The G5222 has a 24.6” scale length, similar to a Les Paul style guitar, and features a 12” neck radius and thin “U” shaped neck for fairly modern feel and playability. The net is set and bound, and the laurel fretboard features 22 medium jumbo frets which sparkle against the arched maple top that covers the mahogany body. Dual blacktop Broad’Trons offer that ‘great Gretsch sound’, and provide a great base for a variety of playing styles and tones. From super bassy, jazzy cleans to bright, gritty rock tones, they can do it all. Aesthetically, they’re styled like the more famous TV Jones and Filter’trons, and yes, a set of either will slot right in if you choose to upgrade. A ‘V’ stop-tail and anchored Adjusto-Matic bridge keep all your tuning stable.
Overall, these guitars play great. Compared to their single-cut counterparts, the double-cut allows better access to the 15th fret and beyond, whereas notes up that high can be difficult on a single-cut style guitar. The tuning remains very stable, and the chambered body provides a bright resonance that you simply can’t get with a solid body guitar or even a full-hollow body. The weight relief makes these great live guitars, as they’re comfortable to sling over a shoulder. The blacktop Broad’Trons seem more versatile than TV Jones and Filter’tron pickups that, while sounding phenomenal, do have a more iconic sound. The Broad’Trons are tuned for the modern player, and while that classic country twang is accessible, they can respond with a more contemporary voice, as well as anything in between. The G5222s are wired with Fender’s treble-bleed circuitry straight from the factory, allowing high-end to bleed through as you roll your master volume down, whereas with more conventional wiring you would lose high end as you lose volume. The guitars also feature independent volume controls for each humbucker and a master tone, so you can create a blend of both Broad’Trons and control the overall output with your master volume. As standard, there’s a three way pickup selector.
Gretsch have nailed the G5222 Electromatic: it’s a more affordable version of their higher-end double cut Jets, without losing too much in terms of specs. Dual Broad’Trons offer a huge range of tones and allow the player to seamlessly slip between jazz, country, rock and pop with ease. Crafty wiring preserves your sound even at low volumes thanks to the treble-bleed circuitry, and the lightweight body makes for a very comfortable play whether sitting or standing. The G5222 is now available in a few different colours, so you can fulfill your country chicken-pickin’ dreams at a much more affordable price. Yeehaw!