Harley Benton MB-5 SB Deluxe Series

Electric Bass

  • 5-String
  • Deluxe Series
  • Body: Basswood
  • Bolt-on neck: Maple
  • Neck profile: D
  • Fretboard: Maple
  • Radius: 350 mm
  • 21 Frets
  • Scale: 864 mm
  • Nut width: 45 mm
  • Double action truss rod
  • Headstock is same colour as the body
  • Pickups: 1x Humbucker with coil split function
  • 2x Volume- and 1x tone control
  • Chrome hardware
  • Vintage style machine heads
  • Pressure diecast bridge
  • Strings: .045 - .130
  • Colour: 3-Tone Sunburst
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Audio Examples

 
0:00
  • Funk
  • Jazz
  • Metal
  • Rock

Further Information

Colour Sunburst
Soundboard Basswood
Neck Maple
Fretboard Maple
Frets 21
Scale Long Scale
Pickup System H
Elektronic Passive
Incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No

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If you order this product together with others as part of a bundle, you can save up to 8 % additionally!
Harley Benton MB-5 SB Deluxe Series + Harley Benton HB-20B +
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starting from £145
Harley Benton MB-5 SB Deluxe Series + Thomann E-Bass Gigbag BK +
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starting from £105

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74 Customer Ratings
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
4.4 /5
  • features
  • sound
  • quality
Total
features
sound
quality
Unbelievable quality with an equally unbelievable price!
05.10.2015
First let me preface this review with the fact that it is based impressions after thoroughly inspecting and playing it for some time.

Build quality.The bass is extremely well put together. I found no paint runs, "stray" screws, paint scuffs, glue residue etc. Everything is as it should be (and I did a pretty thorough once-over!). Price aside, this bass is as well built as any other and this is just unbelievable! I must also give a nod to Thomann's quality control as well, I suspect they too make sure these instruments are top notch before they are delivered, so... kudos Thomann! 5/5

Next up, hardware. The knobs are the metal "speed" type. They work just fine. No "dragging", no scratchiness and no noise whatsoever. They seem to be able to hold up.
Tuners are the open mechanism type. Upon first inspection they do look a little flimsy but they are pretty accurate and do the job well enough. The plain, plastic nut, which also does look flimsy, is well cut and grooved, no complaints. Even after a little abuse (slapping-popping, bends etc.) the tuning still holds true, so they're A-OK.
The bridge is also less chunky than it might appear but it, too does the job just fine. Actually, way better than a few other similar bridges, to be honest. 5/5

Now, on to the sound!
This a single pickup bass, so you'd expect it to be a one trick pony, but no! The "humbucker" pickup's coils are split so you get two volume pots for each "row" and a tone. Nothing over the top but responsive enough and they do the job well enough.
The sound is unbelievably close to the real thing, actually. Coupled with a good amp you can fool anyone! The distinctive growl's definitely there. If you push the amp a little that bass has a serious bite. Didn't really expect it, to be honest. The bass doesn' really lack the highs, either. It can sound very piano-like if dialed in correctly, pretty excellent for chordal work, too. Just dial in the bridge "side", turn up the tone and voila! I also suspect that, experimenting with different sets of strings, you can get pretty much any sound you're after with that one pickup, so that's definitely a 5/5. I wouldn't change the pickup, either. It's much better than many of its rivals and surpasses other, more expensive instruments even! Excellent indeed!


Playability's pretty good right out of the box. Could do with a little tweaking to get rid of fret buzz completely and a little raising or lowering the pickup, but all in all it's pretty good.
The neck is VERY similar to a G&L L2500 tribute. On the substantial side, surely it's not an Ibanez neck but not a baseball bat either. Radius is pretty comfortable for anything. The frets are on the low side and could use a polish but I found no dead spots or high frets, so no levelling needed (yay! I hate fretwork!).

All in all, I can't really complain about anything on this bass. Especially considering the price! Everything is as it should be, and personally, I wouldn't bother modding it. It plays and sounds pretty good and I'd probably use the money on getting another HB. Which I'm now planning to!

5/5 for everything
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Total
features
sound
quality
Hard to imagine a better deal. REALLY.
TBbrian., 22.03.2021
I bought this bass because I've had a MM style bass in the past and I liked it. I needed a bass for a home studio recording. This is my 3rd HB instrument, so to be honest I was rather expecting some frustrations and a bass that will be waiting as a DIY upgrade kind of thing. My main concern was fretwork, I was already planning to buy some better pickup as well. But ... let me tell you, soon as I put my hands on it I was amazed by the fact, that frets were smooth and nice! Perfect finish and nothing to complain about quality and look - wise! In this price range i have not seen ANYTHING BETTER so far. I did not have to adjust the rod, nor string height, i tuned it and the bass was ready to be plugged. The sound blew me away. It sounds MUCH better than the bass I mentioned before, that was active and almost 3x more expensive ! At some point I even thought that I will think twice before any upgrade, because I don't want to loose what I have now. Sure, low mids could be tighter and more defined, but all the rest - I couldn't actually ask for more. I will put some strings of my choice and we will see. Guys, this is an amazing bass, and HB made a huge improvement, thumbs up! I am not going to get rid of this bass any time soon. I feel like I won some kind of lottery! 4 stars only because 5 would maybe not be fair with top end instruments or instruments I never had a chance to compare this one with. MB-5 SB Deluxe is my personal 5 star bass at this point, and I had an Ibanez 605 before and believe me or not, I would not change it back.
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An ok introduction to 5-strings
vnx_01, 06.01.2020
I bought this bass mainly for home studio use (I was done downtuning a 4-string) and am definitely not disappointed.

The MB-5 offers a decent, low barrier introduction to 5-string basses. The neck, though quite thick, fits nicely in my slightly-larger-than-average hands, and the contour on the body is placed perfectly to avoid getting in the way or excessive friction against the arm. The MM-style pickup and the separate volumes for each coil offer enough tonal variety for my uses, and the pickup itself sounds good with good strings. Tuning stability is fine. Out-of-the-box this bass does however require a setup in order to eliminate string buzz and correct intonation. That being said, for 130e + shipping this is pretty much the best bass I've played in that price range.

TL;DR:
Pros:
- Nice neck for larger hands
- Separate volume-pots for the 2 coils of the pickup
- Good, comfortable design
- Good tuning stability

Cons:
- Requires setup
- Factory strings aren't great
- Wood is what you'd expect for 130e
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Good sounding Bass!!
Maxthebass, 08.06.2020
This is just a nice experience.
Arrived very soon (4/5 days), setup was already good...i made only some fine adjustments and changed the stock strings.
The bass is really good, feels good on my hands and sounds awesome considering the price.
I do recommend this instrument, you can't go wrong with it.
I made a test video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YtHz5QovvMU
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Show variations of this product
Harley Benton MB-5 SB Deluxe Series
(74)
Harley Benton MB-5 SB Deluxe Series

Electric Bass 5-String, Deluxe Series, Body: Basswood, Bolt-on neck: Maple, Neck profile: D, Fretboard: Maple, Radius: 350 mm, 21 Frets, Scale: 864 mm, Nut width: 45 mm, Double action truss rod,...

Harley Benton MB-5 SBK Deluxe Series
(5)
Harley Benton MB-5 SBK Deluxe Series

5-String Electric Bass Basswood body, Bolt-on maple neck, Roseacer fretboard, Matching headstock, Neck profile: D, Scale: 864 mm, Fretboard radius: 350 mm, Nut width: 45 mm, 21 Frets, Pickup: 1...

£92
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