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Harley Benton PB-Shorty BK Standard Series

Short scale electric bassNot everyone has long fingers (and no, nothing criminal is implied here), and many people still like to play short-scale basses.

Aside from the length, the sound is also different, because the shorter scale creates a less wiry, softer, and more unobtrusive tone, which simply fits perfectly with many styles. And there are plenty of examples too, especially from the 60s: Paul McCartney and Jack Bruce were famous for producing great sounds on a shorter scale.

What it's equipped with: Everything you need: 1 PB pickup with volume and tone control; bolt-on maple neck ... as with the larger P-Bass model; and because of the price, it is an ideal instrument for bass newcomers!

  • Bolt-on neck
  • Poplar body
  • Maple neck
  • Modern C-shape
  • Rosewood fretboard
  • DOT inlays
  • 19 Frets
  • 762 mm Scale
  • 42 mm Nut width
  • Double action truss rod
  • 1x PB style pickup
  • Electronics: 1x Volume & 1x Tone
  • Chrome hardware
  • Classical PB-style machine heads
  • 040-095 String gauge
  • Finish: Black High-gloss
  • Matching gig bag optional: 121548
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  • Jazz
  • Rhythm And Blues
  • Rock

Further information

Colour Black
Body Paulownia
Neck Maple
Fretboard Rosewood
Frets 21
Pickup System P
Elektronic Passive
Incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No

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Harley Benton PB-Shorty BK Standard Series 84% bought this exact product
Harley Benton PB-Shorty BK Standard Series
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4.1 / 5.0
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287 written ratings Read all reviews
Total
features
quality
sound

Wow

22.07.2016
Having read the reviews I was expecting the possibility of problems / issues. So it was with some trepidation that I opened the box.

I can say I was utterly, utterly surprised. So lets start with the aesthetics.

Fit and finish:

It's flawless.

I really have tried to find something negative to report but there isn't anything at all.

The neck is beautiful, quality, one piece construction with a deep rosewood fretboard.

Frets are superbly finished, there isn't one sharp edge, anywhere.

The / body:

Poplar? Feels nice, not heavy, solid and resonant.

The paintwork - it's a joy, it's perfect.

It has a 3 layer laminated scratchplate.

The finish and feel of the volume and tone is excellent.

The bridge and machine heads - all perfectly aligned, good quality, feel solid.

Setup

I expected to need to do 'something', I have never had a guitar that was good to go out of the box. I even thought I would be tied up for hours fiddling and changing settings.

Not a bit of it!

The neck is set perfectly, the string height is spot on, the intonation if dead on.

All I had to was tune it.

Sound.

I am using a Pocket Pod. To say I am happy with the pickups is an understatement.

With my Line 6, anything can sound like anything and there were and are no issues with pickups, volume or tone.

Playability

Well, it's exercising my short stubby fingers which is a bonus but, I can reach and play what I want which is always difficulty for me with a guitar with a long neck.

Short scale does not mean short on sound or depth.

And the feel and finish of the neck is just a dream.

I spent the night tuned for Jason Newstead Cunning Stunts solo with a big, silly, grin on my face.

Sometimes cut price means dubious quality. I honestly have no idea how something so so good can be for sale for so so little.

Bonkers, and I got a long guitar lead thrown in.

How can that not be the bargain of the century.

For the price of a labelled gig bag I got a beautiful bass guitar and I have nothing but praise for Thomann and their own brand kit.

Wow.

Timely update

You know how it is as time passes and the new toy gloss wears off. Yep, it happened. I have to admit with some music (if you can call what I do music) when using my Pod, I am struggling a bit to get anything like a decent output from the bass for certain genres of music.

I really just couldn't get it up there and the reviews I was reading said - CHANGE THE STRINGS. The advice was that the ones that are fitted set are poor quality, they have low output. I was being told to spend some money, spend more money, change the strings.

But, I am from Yorkshire, we as a breed have very short arms and VERY deep pockets.

So, I decided to have a look instead of ringing Thomann

Hmm. The pickup output was spot on at 8.56 so there had to be another reason. Logic kept saying, I shouldn't believe it could be the strings that's bonkers.

Come on, think about it, they are just steel wire vibrating in a magnetic field. So. It if was 'just the strings' playing them harder would have some effect wouldn't it? But it didn't, well, not enough to notice. I needed a longer ponder and then I pulled the pickups. It was an 'argh' moment.

The foam rubber P. Bass pickup support blocks had compressed, they were clearly setting the pickups way too low. Well, way too low (for me).

So, I re-set the screws, gave the covers a pull and bingo - ROARING.

No, before you state something like buzz, crack and sustain, they are not too close to the strings, in fact they are perfect, just like my Les Paul.

I'm ripping it.

So:

SANITY WARNING. DO NOT BELIEVE EVERYTHING YOU READ ON THE WEB. DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY, THINK FIRST. THINK BEFORE SPENDING ON NEW KIT OR NEW STRINGS.

iF YOUR OUTPUT IS LOW START AT THE BOTTOM - loosen the pickups, lift them, set them, until they hit their sweet spot.

Dear Mr Thomann.

Please, do you sell additional / replacement foam blocks or do I have to nip down to my local hardware store for some draft strip.

Thanks.
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Total
features
quality
sound

Perfect entry lever bass with an eye to guitar players

26.02.2017
I am new to bass guitars therefore I don't have previous experience on similar instruments to directly compare this product to, therefore this isn't an expert review but what I am writing here are my own impression and evaluation only based on my handling and feeling of the instrument which I hope might help other beginners making up their minds.

I already play a bit of guitar and, since I decided to learn bass I wanted an instrument which was as close as possible to my acoustic guitar, I went for a short fretboard bass which limited the transition between the two instruments when it comes to fretting hand position and fingers' stretch.

Unpacking
The bass I bought was a b-stock. It was actually flawless and the only sign of use was a hardly-visible light scratch on the black varnish. Other than that the bass is very nicely finished and I couldn't spot anything else.

Handling
Being used to a classic guitar the bass seemed heavier at first, but I soon got used to it. Especially I need to get used to the neck being heavier and pulling the bass down on the left side (I'm right-handed). I find this quite a drawback and I solutioned it with a strap which now helps me to keep it in balance.

Playing
I find it quite esy to move around the freatboard since the neck size is very similar to my guitars. I think the strings it came with are nichel wound and have that typical 'rocky' sound. I think they are OK for a start but, since I like to have a cleaner sound, I think I will soon swap them for some steel ones. Maybe the strings' play is a bit too high and I'll need to lower a bit.

Conclusion
As a whole I consider this bass as the perfect start for a beginner like me and, because of the short freatboard, with an eye at the guitar players who want to learn this very cool instrument. And Inexpensive as it is you cannot really go wrong.
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B-Stock from €72 available
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Incl. VAT plus €10 shipping
Free shipping from €199

£ price – guideline price only

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This item is in stock and can be dispatched immediately.

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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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