Harley Benton…really?

Discussion in 'Other Cool Guitars' started by Stefan, Jun 18, 2021.

  1. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    7D229844-8D3D-4326-8756-54B5A283F118.jpeg DD214D70-FD98-41B1-95C3-AB10D856B01F.jpeg Harley Benton launched a new guitar with very unique specs and details:

    • Roasted flamed maple neck
    • Stainless steel frets (!)
    • Semihollow, arched top
    • AAA-flamed maple veneer top
    • Grover locking machines
    • Tusq nut
    • Mahogany body
    They look stunning and the specs sounds amazing. ~ 400€. If this guitar we‘re Ibanez or Gretsch branded you would pay at least 100% more and they’re built in the same factory for sure:


    At least for sure a superb basis for fine electronics, hardware and pickups.
  2. new6659

    new6659 Country Gent

    That is a very attractive guitar. It reminds me of the Gibson Pat Martino model (I would love to find one of those).
    blueruins likes this.
  3. MrWookiee

    MrWookiee Synchromatic

    Jun 17, 2020
    SoCal, USA
    Specs look very similar to an Eart guitar Darrell Braun reviewed recently.
    new6659 likes this.
  4. Ricochet

    Ricochet Senior Gretsch-Talker

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    I was looking at the Suhr Pete Thorn clone with steel frets for a while. Unbelievable price point.
  5. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    No middleman- those guitars went directly from factory to Thomann. The lack of a good quality control saves even more. That’s why Harley Bentons are such a bargain. The basics are as good or even better than any other chinese/indonesian guitar.
  6. DennisC

    DennisC Country Gent

    May 11, 2017
    They sometimes have really great stuff. The brand is used for various things, from cables or pots to guitars, amps, ... some of that stuff is pretty good. I have an overdrive pedal from them that is a clone of some famous circuit (which, I have forgotten at the moment) and works flawlessly ... a few years ago, their guitars, it seems, where not even close to where they're now - the reviews seem to tend to be good and even gooder than last year, and that some years in a row.

    ... you bought one of them?

    The lack of quality control, however, still bears the risk that you might end up with a piece of firewood, but better controlled processing in the manufactoring makes this pretty unikely - the less flaws production leaves, the lower the risk you accept by leaving out a sufficient control. Today's machinery, especially in highly automatic production, is quite a bit better and more precise than not that long ago ... everything you can do automatically will eventually cost next to nothing (as there is nothing used up, no wearing parts involved that aren't there anyway), and things like optical measurements, analysis of growth structure that may pose a risk and the like improved a lot the last few years, as software and hardware are getting better all the time, ...

    Anyway, they have no more reason reason to accept poor quality than, say, Fender, Gretsch or Guild have, unless it spares them from spending a ton of money that takes time to return ... doesn't anymore - quality in regard to function is becoming less and less a question of money ... quality in an instrument itself being a piece of art and technology likewise may be a different question, but also up to taste and depending on people willing to pay extra for it - regarding the pure function, HB, it seems, can deliver everything you might need, while not always everything you want (... a new Golf isn't slower than a 30 year old Maserati is ... but which one is the cooler vehicle, is out of question for sure).

    Or something.
    new6659 and MrWookiee like this.
  7. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    Totally agree. Nope, but I‘m interested as a modding base. At first I’m waiting for a review.
    hcsterg likes this.
  8. Ricochet

    Ricochet Senior Gretsch-Talker

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    The basics are exactly the same, just another brand on the headstock. Competitive prices are cause of the sheer volume they move.

    I still have 2 HB guitars, one pretty decent, one never should have passed QC(but has been rectified by yours truly) a slew of pedal clones, and had 3 tube amps. The amps were so poor I had to gift them to people. You get what you pay.

    For €400 I expect it to be pretty decent though. Plus Thomann has a great return policy. :)
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2021
    Stefan likes this.
  9. Randy99CL

    Randy99CL Country Gent

    Feb 17, 2020
    I watch a lot of review videos and they seem to love the brand. I've seriously considered ordering one (or more) but shipping to the US is sketchy.
    Living over there I'd jump on one. Good return policy if you don't like it and you're not risking a lot of money.
    juks likes this.
  10. Stefan

    Stefan Country Gent

    Jan 20, 2016
    A big cosmetic flaw is the (on the other hand mod friendly) plastic cover on the back. It‘s visible thru the lower f-hole as well as at least one screw.
  11. hcsterg

    hcsterg Friend of Fred

    Feb 13, 2012
    Harley Benton…really?

    Yes, really :




    Sure : Harley-Benton are excellent modding platforms, and even excellent guitars - if you are willing to do the setup they deserve, of course. My three ones above, bought 2nd hand mint unused but unplayable now plays flawlessly...

    If I find a JA-60-LH in Sunburst, I'll buy it to built an Italian -style 4-PUs and pusbuttons guitar ! :cool:

    But it's me, OK ? :D

  12. juks

    juks Synchromatic

    Nov 26, 2020
    Fremont, California
    Yep, I would not like to return from the US. Though, GC had three HBs on sale yesterday. That's the only way I'd buy them here. GC or Reverb.
  13. Ricochet

    Ricochet Senior Gretsch-Talker

    Nov 13, 2009
    Monkey Island
    Yikes, that is a definite no go for me, whatever the price or specs.
  14. Ted Keane

    Ted Keane Electromatic

    Mar 19, 2016
    Ft Collins,Colorado
    I've got 4 electric,1 acoustic 00-style I gave away as a secret santa,and a lap steel.They are all worth the money(lap steel for $93.00?),except now the shipping is a killer.And the speaker cabinets are a killer deal.Yeah you might have to set it up a little.But I've never had to do it.The finish is really nice.I'd post pix,but this site is hard to do it.
  15. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    You realize that no one in the audience can see that?
    Still a gorgeous guitar. Hope it plays and sounds as good as it looks.
  16. Roy Clark

    Roy Clark Synchromatic

    Jun 16, 2017
    Bat cave.
    Quality is fine nothing wrong with them. I belong to the clubs dedicated to the brand. The only issue is shipping. They come broke or the box in bad shape. That happens with all shipping any products. Video games, Amazon, Sweet Water, the place that shipped my Batman car my aunt bought me. any places has that issue. Thomann makes sure the guitar uses quality parts and great factories that produce guitars at a certain price point. I do not own one. but i like a few models from them.
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