Gretsch G5220 Jet Review

There has been a shift in recent years with guitars made in Asia. Once thought synonymous with low quality and standards, manufacturers have stepped up their game, offering quality instruments for a decent price.

Which ain’t a bad thing if you’ve been dreaming about owning a beautiful Gretsch guitar.

Check out Kevin’s Gretsch G5220 Jet review to find out why it is a prime example of a great, inexpensive guitar.

The guitar Kevin used in his Gretsch G5220 Jet review
The guitar Kevin used in his Gretsch G5220 Jet review
FactorRating
👀 Looks5/5
🛠️ Build quality5/5
😃 Playability5/5
🎵 Sound5/5
💰 Value for Money5/5
Overall25/25

Gretsch G5220 Jet Review: The Specs

Body

Top: Maple
Body: Chambered Mahogany
Cutaway: Single
Bridge: Anchored Adjusto-Matic™

Neck

Neck: Mahogany
Scale Length: 24.6″
Fingerboard: Black Walnut
Radius: 12″
Frets: 22 Medium-Jumbo
Nut: Synthetic Bone
Hardware

Pickups: Black Top Broad’Tron™
Controls: 2 x Volume, Master Volume, Master Tone, 3-Position Toggle
Tuners: Diecast With Round Button
Control Knobs: G-Arrow
Pickguard: Silver Plexi With Black Gretsch Logo
Hardware: Chrome

The Gretsch G5220 Jet may be inexpensive, but don’t let that fool you. 

The body is chambered mahogany with a maple cap and features a set neck design. The guitar has an excellent way of playing, which should not fatigue players after carrying it for hours on stage.

The mahogany neck features a lower set design that gives incredible access to the upper frets. The laurel fretboard has a similar look and sound to Rosewood and has 22 jumbo frets, synthetic bone nut and beautiful block inlays.

As for electronics, the jet comes with two Broad’Tron pickups, each wired to their volume control – this means you can have both pickups set for a different volume at the same time. There is a master tone control for both pickups and a treble-bleed-equipped master volume for the guitar.

For those who don’t know, a treble bleed circuit allows you to turn down a guitar’s volume without affecting the high end. This is especially handy for those who like to use their guitar’s volume controls to manipulate the amount of gain from their amplifier, particularly with humbucking pickups, since your sound doesn’t get muffled as you turn it down. Guitars in this price range don’t usually feature this as a standard option, so it’s nice to see here.

Gretsch G5220 Jet Review: Test Results

Let’s see how the Gretsch G5220 Jet performed:

Looks: 5/5

The Gretsch G5220 Jet has retro looks
The Gretsch G5220 Jet has retro looks

This is one beautiful-looking guitar. Its paint job was flawless, and the Midnight Sapphire paint contrasted nicely with the white pickard and chrome hardware. I particularly feel the darker mahogany works nicely with the paint.

Gretsch guitars are well known for their retro looks, and we get that here with the shape of the tailpiece, the look of the strap pins, and the overall lines of the body.

Build quality: 5/5

The Gretsch G5220 Jet has a well-connected neck joint
The Gretsch G5220 Jet has a well-connected neck joint

Much like the looks, the build quality was impeccable. There were no faults in the paint, nor the lacquers on the neck and back of the guitar. The neck joint was also well connected to the body, and the finish was excellent. The fret job was also well done, with no sprouts over the white binding and beautiful crowns on the 22 frets.

The entire guitar felt solid overall. You can give this guitar a run for its money on the rowdiest of stages, and it will come out unscathed.

Playability: 5/5

The Gretsch G5220 Jet is easy to play
The Gretsch G5220 Jet is easy to play

The guitar itself was easy to play. The thin, u-shaped neck felt very comfortable in my hands and did not feel cumbersome sliding up and down the neck. The same could be said with the finish on the neck, which did not feel sticky at all.

The guitar itself had a very low action, certainly lower than I’m accustomed to. I feared this low action would cause the guitar to buzz or fret out, but that wasn’t the case. The guitar rang out every note up and down the neck flawlessly. If I were to purchase this instrument for myself, I would certainly look at adjusting the action and neck relief to something a bit more to what I’m accustomed to, but this is just a minor detail.

Sound 5/5

The Gretsch G5220 Jet offers an excellent range of sounds
The Gretsch G5220 Jet offers an excellent range of sounds

What I love about FilterTron-style pickups, including the Broad’Tron pickups on this guitar, is that, though they are hum-cancelling, they have more clarity than your average humbucker. Most humbuckers push the mids but these pickups balance the highs, mids, and lows.

Chords and single notes had a lovely chime, even in the bridge position, where most humbucking pickups lack some high-end presence. The position provided a nice scooped sound that played well with chords and single notes, and the neck pickup was also clear and full. Perfect for playing lines.

The tone control had a lovely taper, which gave me an excellent range of sounds. If you want to get dark and jazzy on the neck pickup, you certainly can with this guitar.

What is also nice about having a separate master volume overall for the guitar is that you can blend the two pickups in the middle position and then use that master volume to control the overall gain level of your amplifier. The fact that they’ve added a treble bleed circuit makes this guitar extremely versatile for those who prefer using their volume knob to control the amount of gain coming out of their amplifier.

Value for Money 5/5

The Gretsch G5220 Jet is incredible value for money
The Gretsch G5220 Jet is incredible value for money

For the cost, this guitar offers exceptional bang for your buck. The construction was incredible, the tones impressive, and some bonus features like the treble bleed circuit make this an appealing instrument. For a gigging musician who wants an inexpensive guitar as their standard beater or to add extra colour to their pallet of instruments, this guitar certainly delivers without making a massive dent in your wallet.

Gretsch G5220 Jet review overall rating: 25/25

We live in a world where companies produce inexpensive instruments of incredible quality. This guitar is no exception. Whether you are a beginner looking for your first instrument that will last you a long time or a seasoned pro looking to add a Gretch to the collection, the Gretch G5220 Jet is an incredible option.

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