Harley Benton PB-20 SBK Standard Series

Electric bass

  • Body: Basswood
  • Bolt-on neck: Maple
  • Fretboard: Amaranth
  • DOT fretboard inlays
  • Neck profile: Modern "C"
  • Scale: 864 mm
  • Nut width: 42 mm
  • 20 Frets
  • Double-Action truss-rod
  • Pickup: 1 PB-Style split coil
  • 1 Volume and 1 tone control
  • Classic PB-Style machine heads
  • Black hardware
  • String strength from factory: .045 - .105
  • Colour: Matte black

Further Information

Colour Black
Soundboard Basswood
Neck Maple
Fretboard Amaranth
Frets 20
Scale Long Scale
Pickup System P
Elektronic Passive
Incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No

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4.8 / 5.0
  • features
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17 written ratings Read all reviews
Total
features
sound
quality
An amazing instrument
K. Zeidler, 26.11.2019
HB PB-20 SBK: 88 EUR, shipping to France included...?

Quality:

I'm no stranger to the handy-work that's sometimes required to render new acquisitions playable, and honestly, I expected to spend some time with this baby...

Initial inspection after unpacking the instrument left me quite surprised though.

Neck relief: perfect.
Action: a little high for my taste, but already quite good.
Fret finish: not super-shiny & polished, but nothing wrong with it; smooth all the way through. No sharp edges along the neck. All good.
Fret board: some minor traces of white (dusty) residue, but easily removed with a brush/cloth.
The paint-job is a really nice - the satin finish looks killer, and I could not spot any imperfections.
The neck-joint is flawless - no gaps, rock-solid.

Closer inspection of the fretwork didn't reveal any issues. All well leveled.

After a little TLC & Wax for the fret board, I lowered the action to suit my preferences. No buzzing, no problem-spots/frets. Very comfortable now.

The hardware is OK. The tuners are a bit tough-going compared to more expensive parts, but a little grease here & there...problem solved.

A glance under the pick guard reveals some left-over saw-dust, but otherwise, things are in order.

Playability / Sound:

Played dry, it's present, good attack & bite. The vibration propagates nicely throughout body & neck, the sustain is good. No obvious dead spots.

The instrument is very light and quite well balanced, although - being very picky - a wee bit heavy on the head. Nothing serious though, and a good strap easily takes care of that.

Amplified, the sound is remarkably good. The pickup is not of the fattest order, but delivers good output & the dry characteristics of the instrument shine through quite well.
The tone control is efficient, and cuts the high frequencies without affecting the upper mid range bite; the sound remains present at all settings.

I replaced the stock-pickup with a spare EMG split-coil & pots I had in a drawer, and now this budget-beauty really sings! ;-)

Now let me repeat this: 88 EUR, shipping to France included!

I play Bass for more than 30 years, and spent considerable amounts for the majority of my instruments.
While I love them all dearly, and appreciiate each and every one of them for their qualities, I cannot help but be utterly gob-smacked by the value-for-money delivered in this case.

I owned instruments costing 10 times this price that were plagued by inexcusable quality control & manufacturing issues...or simply lousy design. It's amazing to see, that such a small price can get you an instrument, that is absolutely perfect for beginners, and - given the quality - well beyond that.

Highly recommended.
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Total
features
sound
quality
Killerbass
unknown pleasure, 18.11.2019
Look at it. I fell for that gorgeous all black with tort guard.
For this price? Suprise me.
And meanwhile I sold another guitar, so I had money to spend and a Sandberg winking at me in my wishlist.
But I had already ordered this one. So I figured, I'll be critical.
Out she came. Stunning looks, not a single flaw, no gaps, no anything.
Gave her a quick soundcheck as I needed to go out.
Hmm. Sounds good feels good.
On return I checked it through more thorough. Intonation was dead on, action was already very good. Swapped the strings out for daddario's balanced tension rounds and gave the trussrod squatter turn and lowered the saddles even more.
She plays like a dream.
Sound was good.

Still I pulled a Di Marzio 122 pick from another bass and soldered it in.
She will now blow away anything up into very pricey regions with ease.
I dropped the whole Sandberg idea because of how it feels and now sounds
And even though the tuners are just good, a dab of grease on the worm and they are really smooth. Yet I ordered black chrome schallers and a gotoh bridge.
With those installed it will give any P bass a run for its money.
Why if it's good? Cos with those on it is a premium instrument.
It is that good it just deserves those upgrades. Even when they are do not needed.
That Sandberg has a basswood body too.
By the way, that amaranth or what they call it? It is a treated maple.
So maple neck, maple fretboard.

The satin finish feels and looks deliciously good. I mean, it's all black.
I really fell in love with this bargain bass.

Get one. It sounds fine. Those Chinese strings you best replace and with that Di-Marzio pup, another 80 Bob and a spot if grease you have an insanely good P bass.
But even with the pup it comes with it is just a lovely bass.
Did I mention the looks?

Pros:
Price.
Looks.
Plays very good.
Decent hardware.

Cons:
Strings, but hey, less then a 100.
Paint does scratch easy.
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€88 £75.43
Including VAT; Excluding €10 shipping

The price in GBP is a guideline price only!

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