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Rating and Reviews: Gretsch G100CE Archtop

This retro-style jazz-box boasts a big, hollow spruce laminate arched top for authentic '40s flavor, brought to life with a Gretsch floating pickup.

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The Wow Factor
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"An amazing guitar" submitted March 30, 2012

By Richard P in Sacramento, CA
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Musical Background: Playing guitar for ov 20 years.
Music Style: Rock, alternative, rockabilly, blues.
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SPOTLIGHT REVIEW
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Overall: I bought this guitar because I've always wanted an archtop acoustic and also because I wanted an acoustic electric for open mic nights that had a little more panache than a more traditional flat top acoustic. Score on both counts! This thing was awesome and ready to go right out of the box. I bought the natural finish because it just looked cooler to me, and man, is it gorgeous. The matte finish really lends to the look of the thing. It just looks like an old guitar from the forties, but not old in a beat up way, like a relic. So how does it sound? Plugged in, it sounds beautiful, perfect in a word. Warm and jazzy, but still bright enough to do rock n roll (or Rockabilly. Come on, this is a Gretsch). Unplugged? Well, not so much. It actually sounds kind of quiet and tinny, acoustically, but this is no fault on the part of the guitar. Anytime you have an acoustic using an electric guitar pickup, you're going to have to make a compromise. You see, this guitar comes strung with electric guitar strings. Flat wounds, actually, which are cool for an electric, but, let's face it, electric strings don't work on an acoustic. You could string it with acoustic strings, and it will sound awesome....acoustically. Electrified, it'll sound bad. So what's the solution? Well, I restrung this guitar with DR Zebras, which are hybrid strings, half acoustic, half electric. They are exactly what this guitar needed. Now it sounds amazing plugged or unplugged. So yes, definitely buy this guitar, and buy some DR Zebras to go with it and you will be overjoyed with the result. One other thing: there is one complaint I do have about this guitar. It doesn't come with a case, and it's extremely difficult to find one that fits it. Gretsch makes one that fits, but it's very expensive and no one seems to carry it.
44 of 45 people (97.78%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"Gretsch G100CE is Perfect" submitted May 17, 2011

By a customer from verizon.net
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Musical Background: Over 44 years as a professional performer, teacher and recording.
Music Style: Rockabilly, Blues, Rock&Roll, Swing, Sould, Folk & Country
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Sound: The first time I ever played a Gretsch G100CE Synchromatic Archtop Acoustic-Electric Guitar I was absolutely floored! Acoustically, the guitar has a well-balanced tone and great projection. Compared to flat-tops the tone is even; highs. mids and lows. The electric neck pickup also has that old-school tone - even, just like its acoustic sound. In the studio, this guitar records perfectly with no help from the board. On stage it keeps up with a drummer and other electric instruments with fantastic, full tones. Although at high volumes through a tube amp you have to be careful where you stand otherwise there could be feedback. But that is to be expected from any true acoustic archtop guitar. Feature: This guitar is bare bones, just like it should be. The choice of maple sides and back and spruce top are more than enough. Ease of Use: Open the case, tune and play... that's it! Plugin and open up more sonic possibilities. One volume 7 one tone control is all you need. And installed in the floating pickguard put them right within easy reach. Quality: Amazing for this kind of money how much guitar you get. I could not find any structural or finish flaws anywhere. Workmanship and quality of materials is impeccable. The shape of the neck is something to marvel at... it just fits in your hands. It's as if the guitar was made to adjust to the player, not the other way around. Value: As stated previously, this is a lot of guitar for the money. Overall: I've owned this guitar for about 4 years now. It has needed nothing except changes of strings over the years. The neck has stayed true. There have been absolutely no issues with this guitar. If something happened to it I would definitely buy another.
48 of 50 people (96%) found this review helpful. Did you?
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"I'm in love again" submitted April 14, 2014

By Jim R in North Ridgeville, OH
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Musical Background: Been playing since I was 16 for pleasure.
Music Style: All of them!
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Overall: First off, I consider myself to be a hack guitarist, and as a former music critic, I should know. I have been playing a Baby Taylor 301-GB for several years, and a Taylor 110 that has been donated to my son for his musical efforts. (Happy 21st Graham!) I LOVE THIS GUITAR!!! I love the frettboard, it fits my big slow hands. I love the sounds I can get out of this guitar whether playing unplugged or with my small Fender Mustang Mini. I am hoping for big things from this guitar, and expect them to start happening soon. I don't expect to be Chuck Berry tomorrow...I'm at Steve Jones level now, but with the ease of playing, I won't be putting it down anytime soon. Joe Bonamassa by years end? Maybe.If I could nitpick, the F holes and sides could have been sanded a bit more and finished a bit better. Not sure what to expect from a Korean made product. Perhaps the person doing the finish work had a Monday morning hang-over, or a hot Friday night date.My lovely wife and I played tug-o-war getting this guitar unpacked from its boxes, which made my anticipation that much greater. I didn't expect to see the FedEx man strolling up the drive on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, and yet, there he was!Thanks for a wonderful second buying experience ZZounds! BTW, I haven't needed any manufacturers support just yet, hence my low grade.
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"Fantastic" submitted March 16, 2014

By Robert S in Fernandina Beach, FL
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Overall: The reviews about the Gretsch G100CE, especially those that recommend hybrid strings. It sounded a little flat out of the box, but it came round wounds. Zebra round/flat strings made it sound fantastic unplugged. The main reason for this review is that I saved about $130 buying a "blemished" that was perfect in every way. Great bargain. Before you buy, be sure you realize you are going to have to remove or loosen the strings to take the material out from under it, and to get the right intonation from the floating bridge. Unless you are accustomed to bridges held down only by the tension of the strings, you should probably add the cost of a good setup to the price. You'll also need a hardshell case because of the bridge's fragility..
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"Gretsch does it again" submitted March 16, 2014

By Stephen H in Seattle, WA
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Musical Background: 24 years of Violin, Guitar and keys
Music Style: Blues Rock
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Overall: Just an amazingly well put together instrument. Shows up ready to go. Holds tune flawlessly. Great weight and action. Hard to go wrong when you go Gretsch! Never had to use Manufacturer support so take that rating with a grain of salt!
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"Great Archtop" submitted November 12, 2013

By steven toll in carrboro, NC
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Musical Background: I have been a professional musician for 40 years.
Music Style: Jazz, blues and R&B
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Overall: Beautiful craftsmanship and a great playing guitar right out of the box. I am very pleased with the tone both acoustically and plugged in. I used for recording and it was very quiet and had great tone with flat settings. Quick delivery and a ZZounds is a pleasure to work with.
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"Gretsch G100CE Synchromatic Archtop " submitted August 12, 2014

By elden simpson in abingdon, IL
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Musical Background: about 40 years. guitar,banjo,mandalin,
Music Style: bluegrass, gospel,country
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VERIFIED BUYER
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Overall: the only let down was no case for it. other than that I am very pleased with the guitar.
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"i love it" submitted October 4, 2013

By Nestor cortez
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Overall: I saw this guitar about a year ago ad i fell inlove with it... so thanks to that payment option i finally got it. I freaking love my new guitar.... i would definitely recommend it if u want to fall inlove again..
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