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Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry Bundle

Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry Bundle
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Customer ratings of similar items

The Harley Benton HB-35Plus Vintage Burst

08.07.2016

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I recently reviewed my Cherry version of the HB-35Plus, and now I will talk about my Vintage Burst. Of course, some of the review will be quite similar, but there was a difference outside of cosmetic, which I will get too. On with the review?

As I mentioned on the Cherry, this shipment of guitars and pedal took only 7 days to get here. This is from Thomann, Germany?to the central US. (Missouri) I have ordered in-country things that have taken longer to receive?I can?t explain it, but I love the fact this got here so quick!

A lot of folks in the US worry about the condition of their shipment. I guess the travel takes a toll on some orders, and I even know of a few instances where guitars were damaged. Everything arrived in great shape. No complaints at all!

Now, let?s talk about the guitar?

The looks?well, what do you expect? It?s a beautiful guitar. I?m a sucker for sunburst/vintage-burst guitars. This is beautiful?BUT, I don?t know why, the Cherry one I ordered seems to catch my eye a bit more. Something about it, with the shape?just looks better. But that is totally opinion?and nothing more. This sucker is still beautiful.

The neck on the HB-35 is different than what I am used too. It?s a thick neck, but not particularly wide. With the exception of one guitar I own, which has a rather wide neck, everything I own has a much smaller neck. I?m getting used to this bigger neck rather quickly, and I do like it. Bending strings feels like waving a magic wand, and I love it.

One BIG difference between the Vintage Burst and Cherry from this order?. I mentioned how the cherry might need some work on the nut. The open strings stayed in tune. The higher notes stayed in tune?but for whatever reason, the Cherry had some problems with the D chord. It always sounded sharp. The vintage burst didn?t have this problem at all. In fact, the action was a bit lower, and I didn?t find one problem while playing. Even while jamming acoustic, the guitar sounded beautiful.

The switch/knobs/bridge/tuners all work great. I haven?t found one problem with any of it.

Lastly,the Pickups/Coil-split... I absolutely love the neck pickup. It nails that hollowbody blues tone that I want to solo with. For me, it?s magic. The bridge pickup is fine. It works for chords and I don?t have any problem with it. As for the single coils? it?s a bit thin for my taste. I did hear some strat like tones?but I don?t play a hollowbody for that. Still, that?s an opinion thing. You may absolutely love it!

Overall, this is an amazing guitar. It?s beautiful. It?s affordable. It feels solid. It?s worth the money and then some. If you are looking for a good hollowbody guitar, you need to try one of these before spending a fortune on a big name guitar? you may find this as the instrument you are looking for!

My Best Harley Benton - so far

Johnny D, 13.01.2017

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HB-35Plus Vintage Burst

Pros:
Price, Finish, Features, Fretboard, 3-way switch location, Output Jack location, Electric Sound, Frets

Neutral:
Frets, Acoustic Sound, Coil Tap feature , A few little blemishes, Strings

Cons:
Strings, Pick Guard

My 4th Harley Benton.
As always, ordering from Thomann?s website was easy and with Paypal convenience. The shipment took roughly 2 weeks from Germany to US/Florida (Christmas/New Year time).
The shipping box was damaged but, all items in the box were in good shape, no product damage!

Initial inspection was pleasing. The finish is very good on a product of this price. It is not perfect, but for this price it is better than I expected. The overall finish is smooth and nicely buffed to a high gloss. As for defects, only a few little specs in the clear, and a small blemish in the wood grain on the back of the guitar, roughly 1/2" long. Not really an issue for this price guitar, and it?s on the back.

The fretboard on this guitar is the best of the 4 Harley Benton's I now have. The fingerboard doesn't appear to have any stain coating as my other guitars had. The rosewood is natural, and has nice grain, however it appears a bit dry.
The block inlays are nicely cut and installed. They fit smoothly to the surface of the fingerboard.
The fret work on this guitar is good, but not finished. The frets appear to be raw fret wire pressed in an dressed on the ends only, but not finished beyond that point. They are clean and free of the crusty buildup my other HB's suffered from.
Sighting down the neck, there appears to be no offensively high, nor low frets, and a quick chromatic run up each string resulted no serious buzzing. I should mention this was done after the action was lowered.
As it arrived, the action was set very high, playable, but not ideal. I roughly lowered the bridge until some buzzing was noticeable, then raise the action ever so slightly.

The neck binding is very good as well, only one small area that is a bit rough between the frets. This can easily be smoothed off, so no real issue.

The strings are better than most I've received, but still not great. They don't feel rough or corroded, but lack brightness when played. I believe this inhibits the acoustic sound of the guitar out of the box. Better strings should make a noticeable difference.

The tuners are closed back, smooth and uniform in function and stay in tune (so far). They all appear to be well produced and bare no branding.

The pick guard - Every review I have read, seen or heard, has complained about the pick guard. I'm no different. It is poorly produced, irregularly-irregular shaped, rough-edged, makes the guitar look very cheap due to the rough unfinished appearance. Two screws and it is now off the guitar.

The coil tap (split) volume pots, cut the humbucker(s) to a single coil(s). As with my HB SC450Plus, I don't think the feature is as prominent as I had hoped, but it does work.

The f-holes are nicely cut and finished on this guitar, some wiring is visible through the f-hole, but of no concern.

The nut appears to be the standard HB plastic cast variety. The string spacing is fine, but may require the string slots to be opened up a little.

The pickups are Wilkinson covered humbuckers. The sound pretty good for stock pickups, especially at this price point.
As for sound, the pickups are fine for now, plugged in the guitars sounds very good (to me). Acoustically, the guitar is a little dull, probably the stings. Remember, it is a thin semi-hollow body as well, not a full bodied acoustic.

The output jack is in a location I prefer over an ES-335. The jack is placed through the wooden side. As it arrived, the jack is neatly installed and tight. I should also mention I like the location of the 3-way switch on this guitar over the 335. If you plan to add a tremolo (think Bigsby), the location of the switch on this guitar just seems better. It won?t be under the trem bar.

The strap buttons are very basic standard style, one at the end, the other on the back of the neck heel.

Recap.
The negatives are minor, a couple small spots in the finish, and a little rough spot on the neck binding in one area as well.
The frets are good, but need to be finished. It's playable, but could easily be much better.
The controls, pickups and tuners all work well, and for the price are quite nice.
This is the best finished Harley Benton I've purchased, it is also the most expensive Harley Benton I've purchased.

What really needs to be done to this guitar?
Finish crown and polish the frets, possibly adjust the neck relief, put on some new strings and check/set the intonation.
And, I might prefer a better 3-way switch. The stock switch works, but feels a little cheap.
Of course, this guitar can be played without any of these changes.

I'm giving it 5 stars because the few blemishes are of no concern on a guitar of this price. The frets aren't finished, but can easily be finished. Overall the total value of the guitar is greater than what it cost. A numerical rating would be 8/10, but the star scale it gets 5/5 for having everything, with minor finishing touches needed.

Please remember, this guitar costs just under $200, it's not $400, $500, $1000 or more. If you expect a $1000 guitar quality, then buy a $1500 guitar. Yep, you read that right.

With a little finishing, this is easily a $400 guitar, or more.

This is a review of the Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry

07.07.2016

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.
First off, I live in the US. Missouri to be exact. I?ve heard several horror stories about the length of shipping, and the condition of the package upon arrival. This was in the back of mind while waiting on the order.

However, in this instance, I can?t complain at all! I was extremely happy with both. Shipping from Thomann, in Germany, took 7 days. 7 days! I?ve ordered stuff in the US that took more time to travel across only a few states. Also, there was a national holiday during those 7 days. Amazing!

The condition of the box? I?d give it 4 out of 5 stars! It was fine. The corners were rounded a bit?but nothing on the box was torn up. The order was completely fine.

Now, let?s talk about the guitar?

This is my first hallow-body electric guitar?so, I won?t be able to compare it to others. I know that?s a bummer, but I still have some strong opinions about this instrument.

The look? 5 out of 5 stars! This guitar is absolutely beautiful. No flaws in the finish. The 2 pieces of AAAA flamed maple top match each other great. There was no scratches on the guitar anywhere. As an added bonus, the rosewood fretboard had a beautiful black/brown color. Sometimes, the grain can make the guitar ugly. In this case, it works beautifully. I love it. It?s a unique piece for sure.

The Neck? Undecided, but it isn?t bad. The majority of my guitars all have small/narrow necks. This one feels thick. I have a Brian May replica guitar that has a thick neck, but this one feels different than that. The BMG is wide, while the HB-35 is just thick. I like the look of it, but my hands aren?t use to it yet. Haha? a lot of my chording isn?t sounding very good right now because of this. But it?s just an adjustment I will make. The neck itself is straight, and looks good. I can?t complain?the thin strings made bending easy and fun, and for blues playing, that?s great!

Action/intonation/nut/bridge? 3 out of 5 stars. The action isn?t bad?but it?s a little bit higher than I like. I will have to do some adjusting. I can do simple stuff, but I found a bit of a problem. When playing the strings open, it?s in tune. But when I make a D chord, a couple of those strings shoot out of tune and the D chord sounds bad. As I work my way up the neck, the tuning corrects itself. Off hand, I assume the nut is going to need some work. Maybe the string grooves need to be sanded down a bit more?

The frets are all smooth, and I don't hear any string buzzing. Awesome!

Switch/knobs? 5 out of 5. No problems at all.

Pickups/Coil-split? 4 out of 5 stars. I absolutely love the neck pickup. It has that blues sound from a hollow body that I want, and I?m in heaven with this setting. The bridge pickup is fine. I?m going to try raising it to see if I like it better. It works fine for chording and pick?n. As for the single coils? it?s a bit thin for my taste, but I did get it to sound like a strat while playing some Jimi tunes. Who knows what the future will hold, but I don't know if I will using the single coil setting much. I just prefer the sound of a humbucker on these type of guitars.

Overall? I will give this 5 out of 5 stars. This thing is absolutely beautiful, and is so worth the money. Once my fingers adjust to the neck, and I get a few kinks worked out with the nut, I?m going to be using this live. I have the option of moding the guitar, but for now, I don?t see any reason too. Thank you Harley Benton for another amazing guitar!

Things to do with a HB 35 Plus

18.08.2016

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General consideration: sound is very nice, pickups are very hot, red finish is quite nice, surface is very polished, neck comfortable, no fret buzz. For this price you cannot find something better.

Two things to do after you receive this guitar:
1. Check the surface for any defect. Sometimes it happened. If is not major...you can live with it.
2. Check the distance between 1st string and the edge of the neck. Should be the same with the gap between 6th string and edge. If is not sensible the same, send the guitar back. Fortunately I havent find any fretbuzz and also the neck was very right.
Nine things to do if you want to improve your guitar:
1. Polish the frets ( with very fine sandpaper and polish compound). The frets were not properly finished by factory so bending technique was not quite possible.
2. Evacuate the wood debris from inside acoustic chamber (mine has 2 pieces of wood inside). This in not a major issue.
3. Clean the fret board wood and oil it with lemon oil. Mine was awfully dirty and dusty!
4. Adjust string high. Use a ruler.
5. Recut the pickboard since the initial one was made awful by factory. Polish the edges at 60 degree. Try not to polish fast since the heat is destroying the resin material. You need a file, fine sandpaper and some skills. I prefer the original ES 335 shape.
6. Grease the pots.
7. Tighten the machine head. Mine was not too stabile.
8. If you have some skills you can make a new truss road. The original one is silly.
9.Adjust the tension in strings by increasing/decreasing the angle of strings over the saddles.
Tune the guitar, play and enjoy it....if you are not too tired. After these steps you'll have a very good guitar for this price.

P.S. Now I am very jealous for the new model with clock fretboard inlays.
Show variations of this product
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry Bundle
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry Bundle

containing: Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry, Thomann Guitar Case Semihollow-Style

  • Colour: Red
  • Body: Maple
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 628 mm
  • Pickups: HH
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: Yes
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Lemon
(9)
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Lemon

Electric Guitar Body shape: Semi-Hollow with mahogany sustain block, Vintage series, Body: Maple, Arched top: AAAA flamed maple, Bolt-on neck: Maple, Fretboard: Rosewood, Fretboard radius: 350 mm,...

  • Colour: Yellow
  • Body: Maple
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 628 mm
  • Pickups: HH
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry
(11)
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Cherry

Electric Guitar Body shape: Semi-Hollow with mahogany sustain block, Vintage series, Body: Maple, Arched top: AAAA flamed maple, Bolt-on neck: Maple, Fretboard: Rosewood, Fretboard radius: 350 mm,...

  • Colour: Red
  • Body: Maple
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 628 mm
  • Pickups: HH
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Vintage Burst
(8)
Harley Benton HB-35Plus Vintage Burst

Harley Benton HB-35Plus Vintage Burst, Vintage Series, semi-hollow electric guitar, maple body with arched AAAA flamed maple top, mahogany sustain-block, maple set-neck, rosewood fretboard,...

  • Colour: Sunburst
  • Body: Maple
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 628 mm
  • Pickups: HH
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Duesenberg Gran Majesto VB
Duesenberg Gran Majesto VB
to the product
€2,290

Electric guitar Construction: Hollow-body with sustain block and cutaway, Arched laminated spruce top, Arched laminated maple back, Body size: 51.5 x 41 x 4.5 cm, Maple neck, Rosewood fretboard,...

  • Colour: Sunburst
  • Body: Maple
  • Top: Spruce
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 647 mm
  • Pickups: P90, H
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: Yes
  • Incl. Bag: No
Duesenberg Gran Majesto CG
Duesenberg Gran Majesto CG
to the product
€2,199

Electric guitar Construction: Hollow-body with sustain block and double cutaway, Arched laminated spruce top, Arched laminated maple back, Body size: 51.5 x 41 x 4.5 cm, Maple neck, Rosewood...

  • Colour: Green
  • Body: Maple
  • Top: Spruce
  • Neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 647 mm
  • Pickups: P90, H
  • Tremolo: No
  • Incl. Case: Yes
  • Incl. Bag: No
€258 £222.83
Price includes VAT and free shipping (where applicable)
£ price - guideline price only
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item number 393595
sales unit 1 piece
available since June 2016
sales rank
in this category Rank 113
at thomann.de Rank 23239
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Your Contact People
Phone: +49-9546-9223-20
FAX: +49-9546-9223-24
Offers include 20% British VAT and are valid as long as stocks last. Shipping costs to the U.K. are 10 EUR (approx. £7), free shipping on orders above 199 EUR. Please click here for international Shipping rates. We do not accept liability for typographical errors or inaccurate information of any kind. *RRP = manufacturer's / distributor's recommended retail price in Germany
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