Harley Benton SC-450 P90 GT Classic Series

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Electric Guitar

  • Classic Series
  • Body: Poplar
  • Arched top
  • Set-in neck: Maple
  • Neck profile: C
  • Fingerboard: Blackwood
  • Fingerboard radius: 350 mm
  • Trapezoid fretboard inlays
  • Cream coloured bindings on the body and neck
  • 22 Frets
  • Scale: 628 mm
  • Nut width: 43 mm
  • Double-action truss rod
  • Pickups: 2 Classic P90 ceramic single coils
  • 3-Way pickup selector switch
  • 2 Volume knobs and 2 tone knobs
  • Chrome hardware
  • Tune-o-matic bridge
  • Enclosed diecast machine heads
  • Strings: Harley Benton .010 - .046
  • Colour: gold top high-gloss
Available since July 2015
Item number 362546
Sales Unit 1 piece(s)
Colour Gold
Body Poplar
Top Basswood
Neck Maple
Fretboard Blackwood
Frets 22
Scale 628 mm
Pickups P90, P90
Tremolo None
Incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No
Including VAT; Excluding £10 shipping
Available at short notice (usually 2-5 days)
Available at short notice (usually 2-5 days)

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in Single Cut Guitars

Single cut with pure P90 tone

Harley Benton SC-450 P90 Gold, full front view

Harley Benton has long enjoyed a reputation for offering instruments of outstanding quality for musicians who don't have a fortune to spend, and the SC-450 P90 GT from the brand's Classic Series is no exception. This stylish SC-style guitar combines a poplar body with a set maple neck that has a slim C-shaped profile which, together with the 22-fret blackwood fingerboard, will ensure an extremely comfortable playing feel, perfect for those just starting out on the instrument. The guitar's attractive Gold Top finish is offset perfectly by its trapezoid fingerboard inlays and chrome-plated hardware, which includes the time-honoured combination of a Tune-o-Matic bridge and stop-bar tailpiece, while the two P90 pickups deliver the perfect sound for Blues and Rock.

Harley Benton SC-450 P90 Gold body, slanted view

As good as gold

The SC-450 P90 GT's poplar and maple construction gives the guitar a punchy and powerful tone, which combines perfectly with its duo of Classic P90 Ceramic Single Coil pickups when amplified to deliver the unique sound with which guitars with these pickups are synonymous. The pickups are governed by the simple but effective control layout of a three-way toggle switch and a dedicated volume and tone control for each pickup. Harley Benton has also not cut any corners in selecting high-quality hardware for this guitar, so players can rest assured that its Tune-o-Matic bridge and diecast machine heads will deliver excellent tuning stabiliy and many years of reliable service.

Harley Benton SC-450 P90 Gold, detailed view of bridge and P90 pickup

An ideal guitar for beginners

The Harley Benton SC-450 P90 GT is the ideal instrument for beginners, who more often than not have to get by on a restricted budget but, quite understandably, still want to get their hands on the best instrument possible. Newcomers to the guitar can look forward here to a cool P90 sound and - thanks to the guitar's appealing Gold Top finish, cream-coloured pickups and matching neck/body binding, and chrome-plated hardware - start those first jam sessions with full confidence, safe in the knowledge that their single cut looks every bit as great as it sounds, whether it's at home or on stage.

Harley Benton SC-450 P90 Gold headstock with Harley Benton logo

About Harley Benton

Since 1998, the Harley Benton brand has been catering for the needs of numerous guitarists and bassists. In addition to an extensive range of stringed instruments, Thomann's house brand also offers a wide choice of amplifiers, speakers, effect pedals, and other accessories. In total, the range includes over 1,500 products. Built by established names in the industry, all Harley Benton products combine quality and reliability at attractive and affordable prices. The continuous expansion of the range ensures that Harley Benton always provides new, exciting, and innovative products that keep players perfectly in tune with the musical world, day after day.

There's nothing quite like a P90

SC-style guitars with P90 pickups have a sound and a character all their own, and this is very much the case with the Harley Benton SC-450 P90 GT, making it perfect for Blues and Rock & Roll in its many guises. By pairing it with a good-quality amplifier, players can enjoy a broad palette of highly usable sounds with excellent dynamics and only a minimum of noise or hum. Besides being a perfect choice for those just starting out on the guitar, the SC-450 P90 GT is also an attractive option for semi-professional musicians looking for a solid-quality single cut guitar to serve as a backup instrument.

484 Customer ratings

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405 Reviews

Great Copper Top for the money
Kire1984 14.03.2022
I bought this because I had severe GAS on p90 guitars. I first opted for the SC special one, but I just don't dig the mustard colour. This one is also way cheaper so it's was an easy choice!

It arrived within 3 days after ordering on sunday. Awesome!

The guitar looked great but out of the box there were some small issues. The setup was not great (although not bad) and there are a few little finish flaws. But hey, for this money you can't expect perfection.

Tuners are ok, not going to swap them because they hold tune just fine. They also turn smooth, the throw is a bit short, so when tuning just be really careful.

The nut is cut fine, it's plastic but I don't care. I put some pencil graphite in there and it's now smooth as any nut. EDIT: the nut was causing major tuning issues. Installed a graphtech nut and it holds tune very well. The tuners are really good enough.

Fretboard looks nice, was very dry an needed some oil.
The frets were a bit rough, needed some polishing with 0000 steel wool. Be sure to mask the pickups with tape when using steel wool!

There are a few high frets here and there. Nothing really disturbing. I've set the action on 2mm low e and 1.5mm high e. It buzzes a little, but can't hear it when playing on the amp. I do however want to try a fret level on this one to see how this goes. A guitar this cheap is a nice practise object. EDIT: I leveled the frets. It was my first attempt and I improved the playability. Still 2 or 3 frets that are a little higher. I might spot level them with the next string change.
EDIT: I don't know if the wood in the neck still thinks it's alive. I've done a second full fret leveling as 13 frets were again uneven. It's now completely level and plays great. Hope it stays this way, because I'm not doing a third leveling ;).

The pickups sound ok but not for me. They are ceramic of course and I don't like the boomy attacky sound of ceramic magnets. I ordered some alnico IV magnets to put in these p90's to see if they can sound the way I like them to sound. EDIT: the alnico IV magnets are installed. It didn't really change the tone much. I might go for some vintage voiced alnico 2 pickups. EDIT: A new set of p90's are on the way. A combo of A2 neck + A5 bridge with low output.

The pots are the cheap mini pots and they put linear pots in for the volume control. I like log pots better so I will swap them at one point. They do work fine though and they are not scratchy. I think I will buy Alpha pots, because CTS pots have too wide bushings. You need to ream out the holes and I'm not going to bother doing this :). EDIT: Yeah so I've grown to love linear volume pots... So much better volume control! Really the whole range from 10 to 1 is usable now, instead of most action happening from 10 to 7 on log pots.

The switch is cheap, but works fine, no need to replace.

Oh yeah one nice tip: when ordering I placed a remark asking if they could select a lighter weighing one for me. And they did! Mine weighs about 3.8kg (8.4 lbs) which is pretty lightweight for a Les Paul style!

Because the colour is more copper than gold, I also ordered black plastics for the pickups, switch and knobs. Looks awesome!

All in all I'm happy with the guitar. It's a love/hate relationship with this one. By far the worst HB guitar I've had, but I learned to level frets on this guitar and I dig p90's. I might sell it on later, but will definitely need a p90 guitar in my arsenal.


Wow, wow, and WOW!
Tim In The States 07.02.2019
I've been playing for 47 years now as both a semi-pro and amateur/hobbyist, and a lot of great instruments have passed though my hands over the years. This is one of them. If you have some basic knowledge of how to properly setup, care for, and modify guitars there is no reason you couldn't have a Les Paul every bit as good as the real thing. For me, the only modifications I've made was to 1) swap out the tuners as they had a tendency to not immediately catch or engage at times, and 2) put on an Earvana Compensating Nut (which I automatically do to ALL my guitars). There was nothing wrong with the intonation and, in fact, the intonation was perfectly setup right out of the box! However, I mostly play around the first 4 frets where intonation is problematic on ANY guitar (even $20,000 ones!) and the Earvana solves that problem. Regardless of the "catching" problem, the tuners did work and the guitar had no problems staying in tune. I choose to replace the tuners with the Wilkinson EZ-LOK tuners which retail for about $20 USD and work great, so it hasn't proven to be a deal-breaker.

The fit and finish are simply flawless! This is a beautiful looking instrument. My "gold" top is actually a little more on the copper side (too much red pigment?), but I've come to really like it this way. It still looks fantastic and it makes mine unique (I hope)!

As far as the neck and frets go: I see no issues whatsoever with the neck or frets. Frets are smooth and polished with no sharp ends. The neck feels and plays simply great. for those concerned about neck-dive, this model is well-balanced and there is no neck-dive with it. One thing I especially like about the neck is that the headstock is at a 14° angle like the Epiphones and not 17° like the Gibsons. This means there's less (unnecessary) tension on the neck/headstock so that the neck is more resistant to breaking while still providing all the tension you need. Why Gibson continues to use a 17° is beyond me as it's completely unnecessary and only weakens the neck. The SC-450 also has a scarf joint which aids GREATLY in preventing neck breakage. Yes, I like scarf joints and you should too. Nice touch, Thomann!

The inlays are perfect and centered. The bindings are perfect with no gaps or marring.

The weight is pretty hefty although not as heavy as an actual Les Paul.

The electronics, knobs, and switches are all solid and there are no problems there. The P90 pickups, which is WHY I got this particular gold top model are simply luscious! Nice beefy sound with a nice tonal range. Everything you'd want in a classic P90. If you know P90s you either love them or hate them. I love P90s and the Roswells are outstanding. Yes, they're a bit noisy, but that's all P90s (which is why some people hate them). You learn to deal with the hum because nothing else sounds like a P90. This thing grinds/rocks like a champion!

The bridge and tailpiece are solid and I see no problems there.

This guitar just smacks of amazingly good quality and craftsmanship and it astounds me as to how Thomann can do this for so little money! This is my first experience with an Harley Benton Les Paul and based on this I will be buying more HB Les Pauls. Right now I'm looking at that beautiful white one!


Needs tweaking to be brought to play
payton20 20.01.2022
The guitar arrived in good shape. The finish and colour are amazing for this price tag (and my taste) but other than that, there are a few things that need to be "fixed".

Neck is straight and fat which is a bit odd (been used to faster necks) but will eventually get used to it.
The fretboard was dead dry so needed some oil treatment but the blackwood looks pretty cool.
Frets needed polishing since bending the strings is obviously not even close to smooth. They also need levelling in the B and high E strings at 17-19 where there are a few dead spots. Also some buzzing which needs to be reviewed/adjusted I guess.
The guitar is pretty heavy which can be either a good or a bad thing and a matter of personal taste.
Tuners are just OK.
Intonation was interestingly pretty on spot (nice one there).
Pots and switch look really cheap but work OK for now.
Nut has not been cut/finished with care (has remnants of the actual cut and not been sanded at all).

Overall at 166 euros, I don't think you can get something better (not even used) so if you have the knowledge and time to spare to get it properly playing, go for it. If not, you may end up with a guitar that is difficult to play. It's a good basis for experimentation on updates/maintenance and in general, stuff you wouldn't do in more expensive guitars but can also be a great (and stunning) player if you treat her well.


Perhaps the Best Value at Thomann!!!
RainerMaria 11.06.2017
(This is actually the second one I had shipped to me, as the first one had a number of problems--uneven or "rippled" or "wavy" neck/fretboard, a visible shim in the neck joint, badly mismatched/miscolored body wood (and I mean BADLY mismatched--really light color with really dark color--visible a mile away). It was clearly B-stock or worse, and Thomann quickly remedied the problem (top-notch customer service, by the way!) by replacing it with a new one. So, this review is of the second one they sent me.)

I think either this model or the SC-450 Plus (if you need the mahogany body and neck) is the best guitar value at Thomann (I have both models now). After I bought the 450 Plus (which I absolutely loved!), I really wanted a model with P-90s. But I was a bit hesitant about the basswood body and maple neck (not certainly not classic les paul specs!). But after playing the SC-450 P90 GT back and forth with the SC-450 Plus, I really can't hear much of a difference. Maybe the Plus sounds a wee bit "tighter" and the P90 a wee bit "looser," but that may also come down to the difference in pickups. IMO, the tone character is in the same ballpark, and the P90 model sounds as much like a classic les paul as the Plus model. So don't let the basswood dissuade you from buying it.

I really, really love these guitars. The price is absurdly low. But the quality strikes me as being about 3 times what it actually costs. The contoured heel makes a big difference in terms of playability. I love it. Fit and finish is excellent (there is a bit of wood "scratching" that you can see in one spot under the gold sparkle finish, but you have to really, really be looking for it to notice it). It's fretting out a bit around the 14th or 15th fret, but that should be remedied with a professional setup, which nearly all new guitars need anyway. The pickups are surprisingly nice sounding for such a cheap guitar. I assume they are ceramic. But they sound really nice--raunchy and growly, but they also clean up real sweetly. I already had an alnico II P90 to put in the neck, and an alnico firebird to put in the bridge (Neil Young-style), so I'll be doing that shortly. But it's a solid player as is. Pots also seem solid. No problems there. I'm planning on putting a cheap Chinese bigsby-style tremolo on it (just to go full Neil Young or Daniel Lanois). If I weren't, I'd probably upgrade the bridge with a Gotoh or something like that, because the stock bridge appears to be on the cheap side. I'll also be upgrading the nut with a tusq. I haven't yet made up my mind on the tuners. So far, they seem to be good enough. I'll revisit them after I upgrade the other stuff.

In other words, I see this as an excellent guitar for modding. For the price, it can't be beat. Apart from the cheap components (bridge and nut in particular), it's a real solid guitar to build on. The neck feels great in the hands and the body has a lot of les paul heft to it. Good resonance, sustain and mid-rangey and growly les paul tone. Highly recommended.


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