Gretsch Garage Sale

In the spirit of JBGG’s thread: Free Planet Waves Locking tuners.


I thought there was a thread about this, but can't find it.

Does anyone here have one? What do you think for a cheap thrill with the P-90? How do they play?



I got to play a nocut model, with one P90 in a Tulsa music store this Summer. Obviously well made, fit and finsih are great. I liked it.

I've since seen a singlecut with two P90s in the same cognac finish. I may try and save up for that one - it looks fantastic.


I played one a couple of weeks ago, nice guitar. Doesn't have a vintage P90 tone though, it probably would after the wood has a chance to age.


I have one (for sale) in the cognacburst. I think they are amazing and fun guitars. It plays very easily and as already noted all over the place, they are very well made and look fantastic.

That said, they are very acoustic sounding to me, which isn't a bad thing, but I want an archtop to be woody and warm, and I don't get that from my Kingpin. I have a vintage archtop that does all of that, so I'm moving on...


Mikey, is it the cutaway w/ 2 P90s? Because if so we should talk!


Ha! No, it's the first version, the no-cut single P-90. The new dual P-90 version is lovely though, isn't it?


I have a friend that's been playing these live for the last year or so , he seems to love his.

I know he jams with the reverend horton heat sometimes but I couldn't find any video of those shows


I've played a few of these at GC. They're really a great guitar for the money but I did find the look and feel of the wood somewhat fake, at first I didn't think it was real wood. I had a similar reaction when I played one of those Gretsch Electromatic jazz boxes. I'm wondering if putting a P-90 on the Electromatic might be the better option. But I've always been a fan of the ES-125 look! Sadly it does not even come close to the sound of an ES-125...but I guess that's a lot to expect.


I haven't played one plugged in but the one i played was very nice. It's definitely a higher quality instrument then my 5120 but as a jazz guitar i have no idea how how it compares to others as it's the first ive played.


I am just really Cramping for some P-90's. I got the Epiphone ES-295, and I love it.

Now I am P-90 mad like Chad.

How can I escape.... those pesky sigle coils got a brother wrapped up tight like a tampon on a Monday....... (I have no idea what that means)


Diggey your ES is sooooo much cooler than the kingpin. There is something cool about them and something not right at the same time. I dont know if its the wood, the neck, the what but everytime I pick one up I say naaah.

I prefer the electromatic 100 hands down over it. and not just cause it says gretsch. It a better sounding and playing instrument.

the godin just feels too much acousic and not enough archtop


fauves said exactly what I was thinking. The Epi, and the Gretsch for that matter, are both more interesting guitars. Like many, I was looking for a cheap ES-125, but the Godin isn't it. It's a cool guitar taken for what it is, but it's no vintage Gibson.


Can you buy a vintage Gibson for less than $1000? If so, where? Aren't you guys kind of comparing apples and oranges? The 5th Ave is a nice little guitar for the dollar.


There are l48's and 50's. and es125 for around a grand out there. but that is comparing vintage to new.

But, I dont think that guitar compares to a vintage gibson in anyway other than having p-90's.

I was saying that comparing it to the epiphone or gretsch offerings, and I like both of them a lot better than the kingpin.

for around a grand there are a ton of good vintage/ used and new archtops out there that have a better feel and vibe. but thats just me.


all I know is, I'm about to go Hong Kong Phooeey on some guitar marker if someone doesn't start making a decent P-90 guitar. I'll cut someone I tell you.

Dude I'll frekin' run with scissors, now I ain't lyin'


I had an acoustic 5th Ave when they came out and it beat my G100 up for sound, though not especially playability or looks.

Yesterday I bought the Kingpin II, with cutaway and 2 X P-90's.

I have had lots of archtops over the years including an L-5 and nice Guilds and Heritages, ES-175's etc.

My favorite of all time remains the 6120DSW just because...

...but I went to a store yesterday on the way to a friend's to play (just for strings you understand)...

...They had the first Kingpin II cutaway I've seen. They also had the one P-90 non-cutaway version but I'd seen those before and preferred the acoustic sound more without the p-90 weighting down the top (though the single P-90 version DOES sound better acoustically -obviously- than the two P90 cutaway version).

However after looking it over and playing it both acoustically and plugged in I could NOT leave the store without the Kingpin II. It's just so right on several levels for me for a dedicated jazzer ax.

Number one it has the same basic scalelength as the 6120DSW or any 6120, Annie, 5120, etc etc etc. The neck is a bit chunkier but feels better than a lot of the Godin stuff I've tried before.

Of course it's not as slick or sophisticated looking or feeling as any Gretsch, but I was sorta attracted to the reissue Harmony archtops (I have not been able to handle one of those yet, and now don't care).

Gibson used to make an ES-125D with a cutaway and two P-90's, as sort of a student grade little brother to the ES-175. THIS Godin reminds me very much in a way about halfway between the Harmonies I remember and that Gibson ES-125D (cutaway 2-P-90) model.

It has a more open resonant "raw" acoustic response than any of the G512X models (though slightly cruder in the neck too).

Plugged in it has a woody Bluesy type vintage sound similiar to an old '54 ES-175 I once had.

It is a thin top so is responsive, and I love wooden bridges on dedicated jazzers (this one is rosewood and compensated for wound G strings).

I played it at the store through a Peavey Classic 2 X 12 and it didn't seem prematurely prone to feedback (though it does not have the G5120 soundpost under the bridge: just the two parallel top braces and a thin ply top), and doesn't seem to buzz much (at least not as much as "real" P-90's) even when using them singley.

At my friend's house I was using his Allen Encore (somewhat "Princeton" -ish, I'd say) and again it didn't feedback or buzz.

They put the pickups on some plastic risers to get them closer to the strings, and they're about the same distance so the neck pickup is more prominant when combined because of the greater string excursion over it, and there is only a single vol pot, single tone pot, and a three way toggle.

I may adjust the plastic riser downward in the future -on the neck pu- but for now it sounds good to me as-is for what I want from this ax: it has the more primitive bluesy vintage tone (say Grant Greene, on his ES-300 vs ES-330/Casino records), versus the sophisticated warm fluffy Kenny Burrell smoothness.

Exactly what I was looking for in an alternate archtop to the DSW!


I've had a late '40s ES125 for years. I got the Godin to play out, and sort of take over for the old man.

I did NOT get a stock Kingpin -- I got one of the modified 5th Avenues that were on offer: Lollar P-90 & high quality electronics.

It sounded very nice, but, yes, very acoustic. There was simply no comparison between the Gibson & Godin. It never sounded raw, just louder. I thought the neck was a bit on the skinny side. The only point at which it excelled were the smoothest of jazz/acoustic tones. Slide was a waste.

I traded it for a cheap lap steel & a silverface Vibro Champ, so it wasn't a loss, on balance.


Submitted for your approval, Diggey, door #3: The Alvarez AD65E.

It has had some recent cosmetic mods, but it is a great guitar for the price: Nice and woody, warm, yet punchy, P-90 tone. Probably not on par with a 50's ES125, but a damn fine jazz box.


Well plus one there AndyJ, (except I must have some time before)

your submission meets approval by the board for your effort and porn like picture. I will look into this now as well.

I can tell you one thing, someone is going to get my money real soon. THe Cramping has now turned into full fledged "Pee Pee dancing" and I can no longer promise a clean floor

Can you buy a vintage Gibson for less than $1000? If so, where?

smokestack_UK just sold one today on this very board.

I also think I may put up my 1959 Guild for around that price.



I'm with you on the P-90 thing. My downfall was an Orville LP Special, now with Harmonic Design p/us, next a modified Peerless Wizard (3 x P90 ES-5 type, only thinline.)

Your ES-295 is on my list. As is the Reverend Pete Anderson. The Godin is off the list. The ones I tried somehow did not do it. Not sure why. They are very beautiful and well made. Something I needed wasn't there is all I can say.



I have seen single pickup Gibson ES-125's around for at or below $1,000. Granted these were not all original, usually tuners were changed out or the pickup... When I tried out the Godin I was not expecting it to sound like a Gibson, but I was hoping it would sound like the Alvarez that Andy J posted.

Pat Ross said: When I tried out the Godin I was not expecting it to sound like a Gibson, but I was hoping it would sound like the Alvarez that Andy J posted.

Now, that was funny, Pat. +1


"The Godin is off the list."

Diggey: I liked everything about this guitar — except for that neck profile. It reminded me of an old Hofner, quite narrow and chubby. I'd never get used to it.

This has a much better neck than the 5th Avenue IMO, although it lacks the Godin's 'woody' old-school look.


I recently sold the last of my vintage ES 125s because the Godin can take its place - i wont say that they sound the same in a direct comparison but also the ES 125 did neither feel nor sound higher grade than the Godin, just different. Also the Godins flat finish and beautiful sunburst match the mojo factor of the vintage ES 125. Only complaint is the pickup it comes with - i have had the chance to hear more than 10 different P90s over the last years and this one doesnt sound like any of them - just doesnt have a P90 charakter - will replace it as soon as i have time. One thing to mention for people who like to try pickups - the Godin has no hole in the top, the Pickup is surface mounted - and i think you cant make one because the braces in that area are more narrow than usual. That was disappointing for me because i bought the Godin to finally find a home for the Lollar Charlie Christian Archtop pickup i bought some time ago which is not possible.

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