Pros: Looks great, great Gretsch sound, well built.
Cons: Not the easiest guitar to play.
This is a reissue of a classic old design with a few design improvements. It's one of the top end Gretsch hollow bodies so costs a lot, however you do get a lot of guitar for your money. I must add that in England it is very difficult to find music shops that stock Gretsches and the prices you have to pay are much higher that in the States, however I didn't want to risk buying blind over Ebay so I was prepared to pay the premium so that I could sit down and try a few before I bought one. Fender will no doubt improve Gretsch's worldwide distribution, let's just hope they don't compromise on the instruments themselves.
The sound on this guitar is excellent, very full bodied but with a nice top end bite (and twang). The sustain is respectable for a hollow guitar although feedback can be a problem in a live situation. The bridge pickup is good for Chuck Berry style picking while the neck pickup gives a lovely warm jazz tone. The body is almost 3 inches deep which no doubt contributes to the woody sound.
Construction wise this guitar is very nice. My previous Gretsches have been an early Country Gent and a pre-Baldwin White Falcon but these modern boxes feel a lot more sturdy. The binding is very well done and the orange laquered finish gives a nice look to the wood grain, which is clearly visible beneath. Photos of this quitar tend not to do the finish justice. The hardware is all gold plated including the brass knobs (which feature arrow 'G' logos). This version of the 6120 features a master tone knob rather than the 'mud switch' found on earlier versions. The pickups are the ubiquitous 'filtertron' humbuckers of course and you also get a Bigsby trem. I like the Bigsby a lot, some people don't but I do. It does exacly what it says on the can and I don't get tuning problems with it.
The guitar has a single cutaway body and access above the 14th fret is somewhat restricted so this may not be an ideal lead guitar for some people (depending on your playing style). The body depth of the 6120 can also make it feel awkward if you are used to a solid or a thinline. If depth is an issue try a 'Tennessee Rose' model which is very similar but slightly thinner (and cheaper).
Tuning wise the guitar is solid even when making full use of the Bigsby (and I do believe me!). The floating bridge can move about a bit but I've found that heavier strings keep it in one position best. The tuning pegs are every bit as good as the Grovers on my 335 and the adjustable roller bridge allows intonation be set easily.
The neck is fairly thin allowing fast playing with ease. However you will need heavier gauge strings to get the best from a 6120. Anything lighter that 11s would compromise the sound and probably cause you problems with the floating bridge. I did try a set of 9s but the top E kept popping out of it's saddle when bending the string.
My influences include Chuck Berry, Johnny Marr, Scotty Moore, John Squiers, Pete Townshend and Terry Bickers This guitar's sound fits in well with all these styles of playing. If you have similar influences this could be the guitar for you but go try one first, don't let the looks alone seduce you!