Harley Benton B-450 QTB Progressive Serie

Electric Bass

  • Body: Alder
  • Bolt-on neck made from Canadian maple
  • Modern D profile
  • Fretboard: Black walnut
  • Tai-Chi fretboard inlays
  • 24 Frets
  • Scale: 864 mm (long scale)
  • Nut width: 42 mm
  • Double action truss rod
  • Pickups: 2 Humbuckers with active preamp
  • 1 Balance, 1 bass, 1 treble and 1 volume knob with push/pull function (active/passive)
  • Black hardware
  • Diecast machine heads
  • String gauge: 045 - 105
  • Colour: Quilted Translucent Black
  • Finish: High-gloss
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Audio Examples

 
0:00
  • Funk
  • Jazz
  • Metal
  • Rock

Further Information

Colour Black
Soundboard Alder
Neck Maple
Fretboard Black Walnut
Frets 24
Scale Long Scale
Pickups HH
Elektronic Active
Incl. Case No
Incl. Bag No

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88 Customer Ratings
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4.5 /5
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Initial Impressions + A Month Later
Dr Bassman, 20.11.2019
1/ Initial Impressions

At the time of writing, I've had my B-450 for less than a week. So far, it's been subjected to learning 30+ numbers and participating in two rehearsals; around four hours each and with the B-450 being played at considerable volume. It still sports its factory strings and has been played using its passive electronics, only. My rehearsal setup has no intermediary pedals or floorboard. Instead, the B-450 is connected directly to a rugged old Peavey head (set up "clean", no compression or "boosts" and with flat EQ) driving an old HH 2 x 15 bass cab. To be honest, that's enough playing time (and experience) for me to provide some useful initial feedback.

I bought the B-450 as a second bass. I'm getting old and my trustworthy Aria Pro 11 SB900 is getting too heavy for me to hang around my neck continuously for 4 hours. I need something lighter. The B-450 meets this requirement with consummate ease: It is light and well balanced. It looks good and has an immaculate, although perhaps, a slightly delicate finish. It plays pretty well too; the neck being very much on the right side of adequate. The B-450 holds its tuning well; even after some "abusive" heavy petting using a solid plectrum. It sounds excellent (again, I've only used its passive mode) and has the overall appearance and playability of a far more expensive bass. It also arrived, ahead of schedule, superbly packaged (with the gig bag option that I had selected) and backed up by Thomann's renowned Customer Service.

Now, for me, excellent Customer Service is important because this purchase had an associated risk i.e., could such a low priced bass be so good? Well, simply put, yes it can. Indeed, my fears of purchasing (and sending back) a bass of such atrocious quality (given the extremely low price) were completely unfounded. In fact, given the quality of this instrument, I'd consider it worth looking at, whether you are a beginner, or a more seasoned player, like myself. Oh!; and did I mention the extremely reasonable price? [rhetorical]. Yeah, I did, didn't I?

Customer service is also important when something goes wrong; and for the B-450, this meant the "disappearance" of one of the pickups fixing screws. How the screw "fell out" I have no idea (not something I have seen in my nigh on 50 years of bass playing) but I did note that another fixing screw was decidedly loose (but easily rectified). I've reported this issue to Thomann and it's being dealt with. After all, these things happen, right?

With new strings, the B-450 will play and sound better. It's going to be paired with some superior amplification and a three quarter stack speaker enclosure setup; something that I is very much looking forward to. Perhaps it's because I am "old school" but I am not a fan of active electronics. So, thus far, I have only played the bass in passive mode. To be honest, I'll probably stick with that: It grunts, thumps, growls and pummels through an amp strip set to clean, no compression and flat EQ. However, tail-off the controls, just a little (or even switch from nail/plectrum to traditional fingerstyle), and you can trip up and down the 24-fret neck with all the dexterity, precision and touch that you can muster, to produce subtly delicate tones which, although powerful, caress your ears with soulful tenderness as opposed the hammerhead cacophony of a thundering bass line as described above. I find myself almost constantly switching between both of these styles and this bass does not impede me in doing so in any conceivable way.

In summary, despite the minor issue with the fixing screw, I am suitably impressed with the B-450. Not only would I be happy to play with the B-450 "live" (and give my Aria a well-deserved rest) but I am on the verge of providing it with a big brother; this time, in the form of another Harley Benton progressive series model: The B-550 QTB 5 string version.

Enough said?

I hope this helps.

2/ A Month Later

This bass is proving to be an incredibly resilient workhorse. The more I play it, the more I like it. It's thundered it is way, effortlessly, through a dozen or so rehearsals. It continues to sound incredible, even though the factory strings have dulled a little. It is a joy to play, it holds its tuning extremely well, especially given the "hammering" it sometimes gets; you know?; when you're competing against three guitarists, you need a bass that can deliver ~ traditional fingerstyle, fast and furious plectrum work, a bit a slap bass (not that this is my thing, but it sounds okay). Yeah, no doubt about it; incredible value for money. Stunning, absolutely stunning.

Although, I do have one problem now that I didn't have before and it would seem that it's going to get worse, very shortly. You see, so impressed was I with this traditional 4-string bass, that I decided to break with my personal traditions and buy the 5-string version. Needless to say, I'm having the time of my life with that bass too; but, I do get confused: They are both damned fine instruments, so which should I use? Hmm? Right now, I'm alternating between the two, but that's just a temporary fix. You'd be forgiven if you were currently thinking, "He's gone and bought the 6-string version too!"; but, no, I decided that would be nuts (although it looks very nice to me). To be honest, having access to a lower B on my 5-string, as well as the narrower string pitch, is improving my playing, but I just can't justify a 6-string version. I mean, a bottom B and a top B/C!; no, that's taking it too far. So no, I didn't buy a 6-string bass. However, better still, I am "literally" fretless at the moment e.g., I have lots of frets (24 on each bass to be precise) but, a fretless model?; No, I've not had one of those for a while; but I have fond memories of the challenges associated with fretless work. And, seeing as Christmas is approaching, I decided to order the HB 4-string fretless version.

How I'll cope with three of these beauties, I'm not exactly sure. It will, no doubt be infuriating but, you know what?; I have the strangest feeling that my rekindled enthusiasm for bass playing (already bolstered by my two HB basses) is about to take another giant leap forward. Or will it be a slide? I'll let you know later on in separate reviews for the 5-string and the fretless models respectively.

But to conclude, for now; if you are looking for a top-notch, high quality, incredibly priced 4-string bass, look no further than the HB B-450 QTB Progressive Series. I really, and I mean really, like this instrument, and I think you might too.
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Another HB Triumph
Stewblack, 31.05.2020
The 'Progressive' series didn't really catch my eye on Thomann's Basspornhub. The shape appears a bit blobby and nondescript. The fretboard is neither light nor dark,the finish unremarkable. And it is cheap. Cheaper than an effects pedal. Cheaper than a replacement neck.

But looking at it, so to speak, in the flesh and above all playing it, is a different ball game.

I may have been dismissive about the aesthetics but this thing is all about the playing, not the looks.

I use a little bass run to test a new bass. The opening run up of the solo in Sir Duke, to be precise. If I'm contorting my wrist to reach the top few notes then the bass needs to be sexier than Felicity Kendall playing Twister with Kate Humble, or I don't keep it.

I flew up and down the neck on this one with laughable ease. It really is a joy to play. The back of said neck might not look pretty. I can see where different pieces of timber have been joined and there's a couple of unsightly dark blemishes in the wood. But it isn't a 1k bass it isn't a 500 quid bass, heck it's not even a 150 quid bass. And the neck is smooth. And it's straight. And the low action and perfect intonation tell their own story. And my hands glide over it like greased WD40. In a vacuum.

The bass has a pre-amp. Another reason to pass in my book. Never got on with active basses. But it switches off and the passive tone is great. And actually, so is the active tone. And the two (perhaps bulky and unattractive) humbuckers blend really sweetly. The pots have that tactile centre point and I would describe them as subtle but effective. No huge sweeping tonal variation but enough for me.

The balance is excellent sat or standing, the weight is negligible. Not worth checking on the scales, you just smile when you pick it up. It isn't polystyrene light like some basses, you don't want to pass it round the band to see the look on people's faces but you barely know it's there when playing.

Oh and as for the uninspiring finish. That solid black actually has a subtle purple tiger stripe quilty thing going on.

I know many reviews will say, great for the price, be useful to give to a student and so forth. But I am gigging with this and recording with it. No question.

Totally blown away.
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An amazing bass for such a low price.
Sioleon, 05.01.2021
I bought a Harley Benton B-450 QTB about a year ago.

Disclaimer: If you want the short version there is a pros and cons section, as well as a summary at the end.

Packaging and Delivery
First of all, it was really well packaged with multiple boxes and that kind of fancy stuff. If I remember correctly, it took two weeks to deliver to Athens with DHL, but nowadays with UPS it took about five working days in a period when every greek courrier was pretty much stuck. So, in terms of delivery, you shouldn't have any problem. The condition it arrived in would have been perfect, but unfortunately a screw had been unscrewed from one of the magnets. It was really easy to put it back with a screwdriver, but I believe this is something worth mentioning. Apart from that, it did not required any setup at all.

Sound
It has a decent sound even out of the box, but after you change it's strings it really start to glow up. I have tried multiple settings with different amps and pedals and I personally prefer passive pickups with some distortion. I have recorded some metal and rock with it and I have to admit that I was surprised by the sound.

Features
It comes with multiple pots as well as active and passive push/pull function that can really come in hand, although I personally use only passive and prefer to experiment with my sound directly from my amp.

Construction and Cosmetics
It is a well built instrument, that is for sure. The overall quality of the wood, the electronics etc is really decent and I wasn't really expecting something like that at the specific price range. Also, it is a gorgeous instrument and the finish is absolutely amazing, but can get dusty pretty quick.

Pros
-The price
-Really good building quality and finish
-Really decent sound
-Multiple pots and push/pull function
-Good packaging and fast delivery
-A unique shape (i personally love but someone else might not)

Cons
-Loose screw at arrival
-A unique shape (i personally love but someone else might not)

Summary
A really decent and reasonable priced bass with good sound and overall good building quality.
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It is worth every penny.
BaD_Doktor, 17.02.2021
Well, I'm new to music and this is my first bass guitar, so don't be too harsh.
In reality, the red is not so noticeable, but it still looks pretty darn good. Sits in her hands like a glove. Active sensors work as expected.
Delivered safe and sound, not a single scratch, but I came with an unfinished truss rod, I had to suffer trying to figure out how to do it.
I would also like to see the instructions for the switch since it is very difficult for a person who did not deal with guitars to figure out what is responsible for what.
In general, it is worth every penny.
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Show variations of this product
Harley Benton B-450 QTB Progressive Serie
(88)
Harley Benton B-450 QTB Progressive Serie
to the product
166 €

Electric Bass Body: Alder, Bolt-on neck made from Canadian maple, Modern D profile, Fretboard: Black walnut, Tai-Chi fretboard inlays, 24 Frets, Scale: 864 mm (long scale), Nut width: 42 mm, Double...

Harley Benton B-450 Black Progressive Serie
(113)
Harley Benton B-450 Black Progressive Serie
to the product
166 €

Electric Bass Body: Alder, Bolt-on neck made from Canadian maple, Modern D-profile, Fretboard: Black walnut, Tai-Chi inlays, 24 Frets, Scale: 864 mm (34" / long scale), Nut width: 42 mm (1.65"),...

Harley Benton B-450 White Progressive Serie
(99)
Harley Benton B-450 White Progressive Serie
to the product
166 €

Electric Bass Body: Alder, Bolt-on neck made of Canadian maple, Neck profile: Modern D-profile, Fretboard: Black walnut, Tai chi inlays, 24 Frets, Scale: 864 mm (Long Scale), Nut width: 42 mm, Dual...

166 €
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Available immediately

This item is in stock and can be dispatched immediately.

Standard Delivery Times

Delivery approx. between Tuesday, 16.03. and Wednesday, 17.03.

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