Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Review & Prices

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Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Review
  • From Gretsch's 2016 Professional Collection series
  • Made in Japan
  • 6 strings
  • 25.5"'' scale
  • 12" Fretboard Radius
  • Solid Spruce top
  • Laminated Maple with Solid Spruce Top body
  • Maple neck
  • Ebony fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond (Single Coil/Passive)
  • Neck pickup: Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond (Single Coil/Passive)
  • Gretsch G Cadillac Tailpiece bridge
  • 2 volume and 1 tone Speed knobs
  • 3-way Switch
  • Standard U Set neck
  • 22 Medium Jumbo frets
  • Grover Imperial Die-Cast tuners
  • Compare Specs >
  • From Gretsch's 2016 Professional Collection series
  • Made in Japan
  • 6 strings
  • 25.5"'' scale
  • 12" Fretboard Radius
  • Solid Spruce top
  • Laminated Maple with Solid Spruce Top body
  • Maple neck
  • Ebony fretboard
  • Bridge pickup: Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond (Single Coil/Passive)
  • Neck pickup: Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond (Single Coil/Passive)
  • Gretsch G Cadillac Tailpiece bridge
  • 2 volume and 1 tone Speed knobs
  • 3-way Switch
  • Standard U Set neck
  • 22 Medium Jumbo frets
  • Grover Imperial Die-Cast tuners
  • Compare Specs >

Verdict: is The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon a Good Guitar?

Made in a country with top quality control, which means you should get a high-quality instrument made with good materials and excellent attention to detail. It's a guitar with decent playability. It has good pickups but might be lacking in terms of versatility. It favors playing chords more than solos. You can find other models with valuable features (locking tuners, stainless steel frets, etc) for a lower price. Overall, a good guitar for the price, especially if you like Jazz or similar genres.

Final Scores and Tone Evaluation

Playability 75
Sound 72
Build quality 75
Value for money 59
Overall Score 74
Tone Evaluation
  • Heavy Metal
  • Hard Rock
  • Jazz
  • Blues
  • Funk
  • Country
Strengths & Weaknesses
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon
  • Made in Japan
  • Expensive Wood
  • Bone Nut
  • Top Brand Pickups
  • Stainless Steel Frets
  • Locking Tuners
  • Neck-Through Build
  • Compound Radius Fretboard
  • Push Knob or Extra Switch Option
  • Tremolo
  • 21:1 Tuner Ratio
  • Strap Lock
  • Luminescent Inlay

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Prices

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Is the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon a Good Deal?

Its average competitor's price is $2200, which means that the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon costs around 82% more than the competition. It might be due to it having additional features, but know that you can find cheaper similar alternatives. This takes into account all guitars in our database with 6 strings and Fixed bridge that are made in Japan.

Explore All Gretsch Guitars >

Is The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Easy to Play?

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon meets 4 out of our 8 criteria items for beginner friendliness, which means that it's not bad for beginners, but it could be better. This takes into account the type of frets, scale length, nut width, bridge type, fretboard radius, and neck profile to determine the easiest combination for new players to get used to.

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon
New Player Friendliness
  • Comfortable shape
  • Easy-to-use bridge
  • Tall frets
  • Wide nut
  • Locking tuners
  • Comfortable fretboard
  • Short scale
  • Comfortable neck

Hand Size Comfortability

After taking into account the neck profile, scale size, fretboard radius, and nut width, we can conclude that the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's construction favors people with relatively big hands.

Nevertheless, this comes down in the end to personal preference. Make sure you test this guitar—or another one with similar characteristics—before buying.

Big Hands
Balance
Small hands

Scale Length

Scale length is the distance the strings will span between the bridge and the nut. It can tell you a lot about the overall playability and tone of the instrument. A longer scale length means longer distance between frets, brighter tone and more string tension—which means lower action, but more difficult bending of the strings.

Here's the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's 25.5" scale length compared to other common sizes:

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Scale Length Comparison
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's scale length (at the top) compared to other popular sizes

This is the same scale length used in Stratocaster guitars, and it's one of the main reasons they have such a bright sound. It's considered a long scale when compared to most non-baritone guitars.

Since the distance between bridge and nut is relatively long, you'll need to give the strings more tension to get them in tune. This higher tension will allow for a couple of things. First, you can get a lower action (get the strings closer to the fretboard) because the strings won't 'wiggle' too much when pluck and won't cause fret buzz. This can allow you to use lower tunings without increasing your string gauge, and it will make it easier to press down the strings fast.

However, the frets will also have a wider separation between each other, which can make it harder to play, especially if you got small hands. The higher tension will also make the strings feel stiffer, so bending will require more strength.

More guitars with the same scale length:

Neck Profile

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Neck Profile
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's neck profile

The neck profile tells you the thickness (neck depth) and shape in cross section. Every difference will completely change the feeling and comfortability of the neck. This is a highly subjective thing, but most players indeed prefer certain types of necks (like Cs and Ds) because they feel nice in most hands.

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's neck thickness is approximately 0.83'' (21.1mm) at the first fret, and 0.97'' (24.6mm) at the twelfth.

These measurements were taken either from the official Gretsch website, or, in case this information wasn't provided, by researching multiple online marketplaces and forums where owners of this model have posted their measurements.

It has a U type neck. This shape usually has more 'shoulders' than a C neck. It's great for guitarists who love the feel of a vintage neck. Most of them are thick, which makes it better for people with big hands. However, some of them can be thin like a C neck but with more mass to the sides for a better grip.

More guitars for different hand sizes

Fretboard Radius

When it comes to fingerboard radius, personal preference will dictate which one is better for you. However, most people seem to agree that a more curved (lower) radius will make it easier to play chords while a less curved (higher) radius is better for soloing and bending.

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon has a fingerboard radius of 12". Here's an image comparing this guitar's fretboard radius to other popular choices:

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Fretboard Radius Comparison with Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's fretboard radius compared to other guitars

This is the same radius that Gibson uses in most of their guitars. When compare to the other popular radius of Fender Stratocasters, you can see that it's a lot flatter. Guitars with this radius are usually made to bring a good balance between single-note and chord playing.

Compound radius fingerboards give the best of both worlds. Unfortunately, the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon has the same radius across the board.

More guitars with the same fretboard radius:

Playability compared to main competitors

25.5'' Scale Length
U Neck Profile
1.688'' Nut Width
12'' Fretboard Radius
24.6'' Scale Length
V Neck Profile
1.685'' Nut Width
Compound Fretboard Radius
24.6'' Scale Length
V Neck Profile
1.688'' Nut Width
Compound Fretboard Radius
24.6'' Scale Length
U Neck Profile
1.688'' Nut Width
12'' Fretboard Radius
24.6'' Scale Length
U Neck Profile
1.688'' Nut Width
12'' Fretboard Radius

Nut Width

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Nut Width
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Nut Width

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon has a nut width of 42.9mm (1.688''). This size is also known as 1 11/16'' and it's the most common size found in electric guitars. It offers a good balance of string separation at the nut. It's the size that most guitarists prefer as it gives them just enough space to play open chords without muting the strings, but without spreading the strings too wide and making bar chords difficult to perform.

More guitars with the same nut width:

Frets

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon has 22 frets. Even though 24 frets has become really popular, there's still a good reason to get fewer frets; the pickup at the neck position will be further away from the bridge. This makes the neck pickup achieve a warmer tone. You might want this if you're playing Jazz or similar genres.

However, if you don't care about the warmer neck pickup, more frets will always be better. It's always nice to have the option to play higher notes if you want to.

Finally, these are nickel silver frets, so they won't last as long as stainless steel frets. If you use your instrument a lot, you'll need to replace the frets after a few years.

More guitars with the same amount of frets:

Fret Size

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Fret Size Comparison
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's fret size (in orange) compared to other popular sizes

Finally, let's talk about fret size. Some people prefer tall frets because it's easier to press the strings and perform bends since there's less friction against the fretboard. On the other hand, some people like shorter frets because they like to touch the fretboard when playing, or because they got heavy hands and tend to press too much on the string and alter the of the note pitch accidently.

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's frets are Medium Jumbo size. These sit somewhere between a Jumbo and a Medium fret. They're not quite as tall as a full Jumbo, so you'll still feel the fretboard, but you won't feel it as much as with medium frets. This is a good size if you want to make it easy to press the strings but would also like a little bit of ''feedback'' to know when to stop pressing so the notes don't go out of pitch.

More guitars with the same type of frets:

Playability Score

Bending & Vibrato Ease 75
Chord Playability 90
Solo Playability 60
Playability 75

Does the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Sound Good? Tone Analysis

Wood will have little influence in the final tone of an electric guitar. Instead, we'll take a look at the hardware used—mainly the pickups—to determine what kind of tone you can expect.

Pickups

This guitar comes with pickups from one of the top brands: Gretsch. So you can expect well built pickups with great sound that shouldn't need an upgrade anytime soon.

These are passive pickups, so you can expect a moderade level of hot output instead of the overwhelming output that distinguises active pickups in metal.

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's configuration is SS. This is the classic Telecaster configuration and it's used mainly for playing clean or with low-gain distortion. It doesn't give you as much versatility as a Strat SSS configuration, but you might like the cleaner look of a guitar body with fewer pickups.

More guitars with the same pickups

22 Frets
Fixed Bridge
Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond Bridge Pickup
Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond Neck Pickup
22 Frets
Bigsby Tremolo Bridge
Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond Bridge Pickup
Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond Neck Pickup
22 Frets
Bigsby Tremolo Bridge
Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond Bridge Pickup
Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond Neck Pickup
More guitars with the same pickups:

Versatility

It comes with the popular 3-way switch that is present in most guitars. For more versatility, guitarists tend to prefer a 5-way switch, although it all depends on what you want to use your guitar for.

Unfortunately, it doesn't come with more options for coil split or coil tapping. This makes it less versatile than some competitors.

Diagram

Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon pickups switch and push knobs diagram
Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon's switch options

What music genre is the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon good for?

As a 6 strings, Hollowbody guitar with SS configuration and Passive pickups, we'd recommend it for genres like Jazz or similar. However, you can use almost any guitar for any genre. This is just the typical type of music for this kind of guitar.

Sound Score

Pickups 100
Sustain 65
Versatility 52
Tuning Stability 70
Sound 72

How well is the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Built?

Where is the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Made?

Knowing where the guitar is produced is a good way to know how well it's built. Some manufacturing countries are known for having higher quality standards. For example, most expensive guitars are made in the US or Japan, but there are some exceptionally great countries—like South Korea—that are building a good reputation.

The Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon is made in Japan. You should expect a high-quality guitar with excellent quality control. It can be compared to guitars made in the US, which is why they're also expensive.

More guitars made in Japan

Quality of Wood Used in the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon

As an electric guitar, type of wood won't affect the tone and sustain much. Instead, the hardware will be much more important. However, wood is still important for the look and feel of the guitar in general.

These are the types of wood used in the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon:

Spruce wood pattern used for guitar building
Spruce Body
Maple wood pattern used for guitar building
Maple Neck
Ebony wood pattern used for guitar building
Ebony Fretboard

The body is made of Spruce. This wood has a light color with tight grain patterns. It's very stiff but relatively light. It's known for producing a well-rounded tone with a broad dynamic range.

The neck is made of Maple. This is one of the most popular types of wood used in all kinds of guitars. It's heavy, strong and compact, which makes it great for necks. However, it's also used for fretboards, bodies and tops due to its light color, resistance and beautiful patterns. When it comes to tone, it highlights the mid and high frequencies.

Finally, the fretboard material is Ebony. This is one of the most expensive woods there is, which is why it's mostly used for fretboards. It is dense, heavy, highly resistant and comes in a really dark color that gives any guitar a classy touch. Tone wise, it helps the high side of the spectrum and provides good sustain.

Bridge

The bridge is a Gretsch G Cadillac Tailpiece. The advantage of fixed bridges is that they don't require any kind of set-up. This makes it extremely easy when changing strings because you don't need to adjust anything besides tuning the guitar. Also, the fact that the bridge is directly attached to the body will help to increase sustain. The disadvantage is the lack of versatility since you can't create the same vibrato effects as with tremolo bridges.

More guitars with the same type of bridge:

Nut Material

Another important thing to analyze is the nut material, as it's one of the most important aspects that can affect the sound and playability of your guitar. A well-cut nut will make sure the guitar stays in tune and will make it more comfortable to play.

In this case, the Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon has a Bone nut. This material is one of the highest quality you can get. It provides excellent sustain and tune stability if cut well. The only disadvantage is that it's an organic material, so it's not consistent. Two different bone nuts, even if made from the same bone, will probably sound slightly different. However, bear in mind that this is only relevant when playing open strings.

More guitars with the same nut material:

Neck Joint

The neck joint is the part where the neck of the guitar meets the body. There are three main techniques to attach both parts together: Set-In, Bolt-On and Neck-Through. The latter two provide different advantages, although neck-throughs are the most expensive.

This guitar has a Set neck joint. This type of neck joint consists of using different pieces of wood for the neck and the body of the guitar. Both pieces are then glued together. This is more expensive to make than a bolt-on neck, but it's cheaper than a neck-through guitar. Some people believe that this gives more sustain than a bolt-on neck due to both pieces having a 'better connection' than with bolts. Still, it's something difficult to prove.

However, this type of neck joint does have the disadvantage of not allowing you to easily swap the neck for another. This makes this type of neck joint less mod-friendly.

More guitars with the same build:

Build Quality Score

Quality of materials 71
Features 55
Quality Control 100
Build Quality 75

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Gretsch G6136-55 Vintage Select Edition '55 Falcon Specs

General
Brand: Gretsch
Year: 2016
Configuration: SS
Strings: 6
Made in: Japan
Series: Professional Collection
Colors: White
Left-Handed Version: No
Body
Top: Solid Spruce
Type: Hollowbody
Body Material: Laminated Maple with Solid Spruce Top
Bridge: Gretsch G Cadillac Tailpiece
Neck
Neck Joint: Set
Tuners: Grover Imperial Die-Cast
Fretboard: Ebony
Neck Material: Maple
Decoration: Mother of Pearl Humpblock with Feather Engraving
Scale Size: 25.5"
Shape: Standard U
Thickness: 1st Fret: 0.83'' (21.1mm) - 12th Fret: 0.97'' (24.6mm)
Frets: 22 Medium Jumbo
Fretboard Radius: 12"
Nut: Bone
Nut Width: 42.9mm (1.688'')
Electronics
Switch: 3 Way
Knobs: Speed
Volume Controls: 2
Tone Controls: 1
Bridge Pickup: Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond (Single Coil / Passive)
Neck Pickup: Gretsch TV Jones T-Armond (Single Coil / Passive)