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Harley Benton CST-24HB TOL BCF

Electric Guitar

  • Deluxe Series
  • Body: Mahogany, chambered
  • Top: Flamed maple
  • Set-in neck: Mahogany
  • Fretboard: Roseacer (thermally treated maple wood)
  • Mother of pearl inlays: Tree of Life
  • 24 Frets
  • Scale: 635 mm
  • Nut width: 42 mm
  • Graphite nut
  • Pickup: 2 Wilkinson MWCHB Live humbuckers
  • 1 Volume- and 1 tone knob (push/pull: coil split)
  • 3-Way toggle switch
  • DLX chrome hardware
  • DLX GTB wraparound bridge
  • DLX diecast machine heads
  • Strings: D'Addario EXL-110 .009 - .042
  • Colour: Black Cherry Flame High-gloss
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Further information

Colour Black
Body Mahogany
Top Maple
Neck Mahogany
Frets 24
Scale 635 mm
Pickups HH
Tremolo No
Incl. Case No
Incl. Bag No
15 customer ratings:
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
4.5 / 5.0
  • features
  • sound
  • quality
15 written ratings Read all reviews
Total
features
sound
quality

My new favorite guitar

23.01.2017
- Overall -

This is my new favorite guitar. Needed some setup work out of the box but once dialed in, very playable. Looks and sounds fantastic. Can't say enough good things about the pickups.


- Fit and Finish -

First of all, the guitar is a looker. The cherry flame top is beautiful and comes alive under stage lighting. The chrome hardware is a good match for the color. The tree of life inlay is a nice touch and adds interest to the fretboard.

Up close, there are some small flaws. A couple small spots where the color coat was sanded too far. Slight irregularity where the inside edges of the f-holes were painted. A couple of spots where filler was used on the fretboard inlay. But these are small flaws, unnoticeable from more then 3 feet away.

The neck is glued in with tight-fitting joints, no obvious shims or filler. This should mean that the neck will never have a chance to work loose. The TOL inlay was likewise done well, leaving no gaps or uneven spots on the fretboard.

- Setup -

Straight out of the box, the guitar did not have a playable setup, other than having strings. The action was far to high to be playable, intonation was nowhere close, and the pickups were nearly touching the strings although the neck (truss rod) was nicely set. I had to do a full setup on the guitar, which is probably to be expected in a guitar of this price range.

My biggest beef with the guitar has to do with the bridge. It uses a single-piece bridge/stop, which in itself isn't bad, but this one does not have adjustments for individual strings. There are set screws to adjust at the top and bottom, and an adjustment that affects both D and G strings.

I had to adjust the set screw for the top (low) strings to near-full engagement, pushing it about 5mm away from the post. This is not optimal for overall tuning stability as there is more play in the bridge the further it is pushed off the post.

All that aside, I was able to get the guitar to a reasonable state of intonation.

The bridge posts have plenty of height adjustment, certainly enough to satisfy anyone who likes a guitar with low action. I discovered that a couple of frets were slightly high and need to be dressed, which I will do when I next change strings.

Overall, be prepared to spend an hour or so setting up the guitar to your satisfaction.

- Pickups -

The guitar comes with Wilkinson MWCHB pickups, nominally somewhere in the range of 7.1K in the neck and 13.5K in the bridge. They are surprisingly well-matched to the guitar. Perhaps a bit hot for a semi-hollow body guitar - some of the guitar's natural resonance gets lost - but they have a wide dynamic range, full articulation and respond beautifully to pick dynamics and volume pot adjustments. Would also be great pickups for a vintage sound in a Les Paul single cut style guitar.

This guitar came equipped with a coil tap (push/pull on the tone pot affecting both pickups), which adds a lot of versatility to the guitar. I tend to leave it in single-coil mode, which picks up more of the guitar's natural sound.

The pickups have adjustable slugs, so it is possible to tune the response on each string.

This is the best stock pickup set I've ever heard in a budget guitar, nearly as good as some of the sets on high-end factory models. You could buy a better pickup set for the guitar (lower ouput, Alnico 2 or 4 magnets, unpotted), but it would probably cost as much as the guitar itself.

- Tuners -

Unbranded (I'm guessing Wilkinson), but good. No looseness and adjust easily.

- Playability -
Once set up, the guitar plays well and sounds good. The neck profile is comfortable and smooth. Hard to say much more than that.
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Total
features
sound
quality

inlays and wiring prevent it from being a 4 star.

ThePariahComplex, 18.07.2017
CONS
.The wiring was loose I had to solder it myself

.the inlays were sloppy and when they were put in the fret board was dinged up badly.

Pros

. The coil split works great.

.The pickups are among the best with bargain priced guitars.

.The finish is very pleasing to the eye. (opinion)
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Show variations of this product
Harley Benton CST-24HB TOL BCF
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Harley Benton CST-24HB TOL BCF

Electric Guitar Deluxe Series, Body: Mahogany, chambered, Top: Flamed maple, Set-in neck: Mahogany, Fretboard: Roseacer (thermally treated maple wood), Mother of pearl inlays: Tree of Life, 24...

  • Colour: Black
  • Body: Mahogany
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Mahogany
  • Frets: 24
  • Scale: 635 mm
  • Pickups: HH
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
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  • Colour: Brown
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  • Frets: 24
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  • Incl. Bag: No
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Harley Benton CST-24HB TOL Tobacco Flame

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  • Scale: 635 mm
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  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton CST-24HB Charcoal Flame
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Harley Benton CST-24HB Charcoal Flame

Electric Guitar Shape: Semi-hollow body with f-holes, Body: Mahogany, Top: AAA Flamed maple, Set-in 3-piece neck: Mahogany, Fretboard: Roseacer (thermally treated maple wood), 24 Frets, Scale: 635...

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  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton CST-24HB Black Cherry Flame
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Harley Benton CST-24HB Black Cherry Flame

Electric Guitar Deluxe Series, Design: Semi-hollow with F-holes, Body: Mahogany, Top: AAA Flamed maple, Set-in 3-piece mahogany neck, Fretboard: Rosewood, Mother of pearl Morning Star fretboard...

  • Colour: Black
  • Body: Mahogany
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Mahogany
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  • Frets: 24
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Pickups: HH
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
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