Harley Benton TE-30 BE Standard Series

Electric guitar

  • Body: Ash
  • Bolted maple neck
  • Neck profile: C
  • Fretboard: Maple
  • Fretboard radius: 350 mm
  • Dot inlays
  • 21 Frets
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Nut width: 42 mm
  • Neck radius: 13,78"
  • Double-action truss-rod
  • Pickups: 2 TE-Style single coils
  • 1 Volume and 1 tone control
  • 3-Way switch
  • Hardware: Chrome
  • Die-cast machine heads
  • String strength from factory: .009 - .042
  • Colour: Blonde, high-gloss
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Further Information

Colour Blonde
Pickups SS
Fretboard Maple
Tremolo None
Body Ash
Top None
Neck Maple
Frets 21
Scale 648 mm
Incl. Case No
Incl. Bag No

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607 Customer Ratings:
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TE-30 My second Telecaster style guitar purchase from Thomann
An old soundman from the analog days, 13.03.2020
After watching many reviews, I purchased my TE-30 as one of a batch of three guitars. (shipping to Canada is expensive but is one price for up to three guitars, so...) a SC 450 Gold Top; a TE-52 and this TE-30. The latter two are telecaster style guitars both with Ash body and Maple neck. Of interest to me was that, while the TE-30 is significantly less expensive than the TE-52, the basic construction and materials are the same. These are both quite heavy coming in at just shy of nine pounds each but I like the weight (for the balance) and the tele style, and so took a chance on the two. I was not disappointed. The TE-30 is a beautiful guitar. I checked first for shipping rash or other damage and there was none. (well done Thomann, CBSA, and shippers!) After a careful visual inspection and a quick tune, I verified the switching, volume, and tone pots. I found all functions on the TE 30 respond exactly like those on the TE-52. The electronics on both are smooth, predictable, and effective. The pickups are the same on both guitars and sound very good even against a traditional telecaster. I also found the volume level between the bridge and neck pickups to be well balanced with neither louder than the other at the same setting. So, the pickup resistances must be close which suggests to me a reasonable level of quality control at the manufacturer (which is a good thing). So, what are the differences that cause the TE-30 to be significantly less expensive than the TE-52? I have not yet had the pick guards off and so cannot speak to some possible difference in the switches or pots used but I can say both guitars respond in very much the same way and so probably have the same guts. There is, however, a very significant difference in the tuning keys. The TE-52 has very nice Kluson style tuners while those on the TE-30 are less interesting. While neither are top of the line tuners, (they cannot be at this price point) those on the TE-30 are just not as precise. They have a small but noticeable dead spot between tightening and loosening. Oddly, on mine at least, this is the almost exactly the same across all six tuners which suggests to me it is a design issue and not some random thing. To the positive, once tuned they do hold well. (I will probably change them out at some point though) The only other 'issues' I've come across so far are probably best described as routine maintenance. I put a quarter turn on the truss rod to address some unnecessary relief. The quarter turn did the trick so I know the truss rod is good. And, as with the TE-52, I set the intonation and lowered the strings to where I like them. Pretty routine stuff.

I find my TE-30 and the other two HB's I bought to be a truly excellent value. It will be interesting to see how well they endure over time. For anyone who may be wondering... Yes, if this guitar is ever stolen from me, I will absolutely buy another TE-30!
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a great tele doesn't need to be fancy, it's a hammer!
Boyan Hristov, 23.07.2020
It's great.

Country, blues, jazz, soul, funk, RnB, rock. Great for slide too!

Sounds great and it sounds like a tele should. The pickups are great. I don't see a need to upgrade them. The finish is gorgeous. It is heavy. It may be ash, but it's not swamp ash.

It's a top loader too, for me that's a feature - the strings don't go through the body, but through the bridge. It feels slinkier. One of my favorite tele players, Jim Campilongo, plays a 59 tele that is a top loader.

After playing it for a month the frets' ends popped out of the fingerboard. Ouch. That means the neck has dried up and shrunk, thus exposing the frets out of the fretboard.
I imagine they are churning tons of these cheap guitars and don't care to properly wait to dry the wood. Fixing this here in Copenhagen will cost probably more than the guitar... Might be better to buy the files and do it myself...

The Pickguard Disaster.

I find the mother-of-pearl pickguard very time period inappropriate and kitsch. How did they overlooked this aesthetically is beyond me. A simple black or white pickguard would have been better for such a simple and classic guitar. To add insult to the injury, apparently the Harley Benton pick guards they sell don't fit Harley Benton guitars. I ordered some standard replacement for the actual brand tele and that didn't fit either. Don't waste money on that.

I painted mine with a black permanent non water soluble marker. It's absolutely gorgeous now. Since I play daily I've had to touch it up a couple of times, I don't mind at all, it takes me 10 seconds.


The Tuners

I also changed the tuners, thought the ones it came with were totally functional, even if not the greatest. I put the cheapest klusons with oval peg heads, just so it looks more like a classic tele. Honestly, other than the looks the cheap tuners weren't an essential upgrade - could have kept the original ones.

What I'd love to see on Harley Benton guitars in general (This is my 2nd one) is staggered tuners so they don't have to use these ridiculous looking string trees. I hope they are listening.

I don't use the string tree for the D and G strings - I bend behind the nut.


The Jack and The Nut

The jack is the worst. It's cheap and it comes off, you have to tighten it all the time. That and the nut will be my next upgrade. The nut is cut poorly, with the B string cut closer to the G string than it should be.

The jack on my fusion Hb is also pretty bad, I hope Thomann listens...

The guitar also will need to be shielded.

The neck is nice and chunky and very comfortable.
The neck joint is absolutely outstanding.

The electronics are totally fine - the pots feel smooth and I love the tapper on both the volume and tone - bravo Harley Benton!

Even with the frets popping out, this was a great purchase. I love playing this guitar, it sounds as good as any great tele I've ever played at a fraction of the price tag.

This tele is more real than a lot of the cheap F brand teles you can buy for 2/3 times the money. So if you care more about the tone than what the logo on the headstock says then this is a no brainer.

I've been a professional musician since the late 1990s
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Simply unbelievable.
Mofosir, 05.01.2018
I always wanted a telecaster, but somehow never got one. Since I couldn't spend a whole heap of money on one, I kept trying out guitars that went somewhere around 250 euro, but I never found them likable, they never sounded like a tele should. So, after reading lots of good reviews, and having purchased a Harley Benton strat before, I thought I'd give it a shot, thinking that if it turned out to be lousy, it'd be a good modding base, but how wrong was I. This guitar is simply unbelievable, especially for a mere 89EU. Upon inspection, I could find no flaws in the overall finish of the guitar - the color looks great, lighter than in the pictures, creamy, very sweet, the neck is of a satin finish and is extremely comfortable, the tuners are alright, the spin ratio seems good enough, though I see why some would want to upgrade, though I would rather suggest trying rolling string trees first. But as of now, it stays in tune. The pickup switch feels cheapish, but it does it's job fine and it's not something that would bother me since an "upgrade" is very very cheap. Now, these things that I mentioned are absolute nitpicks, as the guitar looks and plays amazing.

Firstly, the neck - many that reviewed this commented on how fat or wide the neck is, ala the baseball bat neck. While it is surely subjective, I find the neck to be very comfortable as I dislike very thin, flat ones. It's similar to the HB ST-62 strat, but a tad slinkier, and feels much much faster. The satin finish is very nice and helps with slides. As this is my first guitar with a satin neck, I am absolutely loving it! The fret job is great, no sharp ends, everything is rounded off and such, really extremely impressive for this price! The only bit that was wonky was that the frets themselves weren't fully polished, but that went away after playing for a couple of hours. The leveling is astonishing, considering the price, no buzz, nothing. Also, the action was great right out of the box. I must be lucky or something.

Electronics - I have no quarrel with them. I quite enjoy the pickups, the middle position is very chimy and full, the bridge is biting, snaps right back at You, just as a proper tele should, and the neck is heavenly. I also should mention that it must be properly shielded because it doesn't buzz anywhere nearly as much as I expected, considering it's single coils.

Body - it's a two piece, and let me tell You, it's damn heavy. I don't mind it since I'm used to an LP that weighs a ton, but even so I was surprised since it weighs exactly as much as the full blown LP! I'm used to the weight and have a good back, but I can see how this could be an issue for some, so beware - it is darn heavy!

Playability - honestly, it's one of the best playing guitars I've ever played and I've been playing for over 15 years and played a whole lot of guitars. I bought this on the basis that my HB ST-62 strat was surprisingly okay, since I wanted something that would lay around the house, but Jesus is this nicer that the strat! The neck is miles away and overall it just feels good.

You may choose not to believe me, it might sound like a bought review but I absolutely swear that it is not so, it's just a very very good guitar. Maybe I lucked out and got the best one, I don't know, but once I've picked it up and plugged in I couldn't stop playing for a couple of hours! Very comfy, and startlingly versatile.

Overall - I honestly can't believe that I payed only 89 euro for this, it's comfortable, sound great, looks great too!
Would I recommend?

YES.

You'd be a fool not to get one of these.
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Cheap and effective.
RobM, 17.01.2018
I've been a Les Paul user for years and recently wanted to diverge into the world of telecasters. They're known to be versatile guitars so why not give them a try. I didn't fancy splashing out big money in case I didn't like it so based on the reviews the TE-30 seemed like it would be worth a shot seeing as it costs less than ¤90! Here are my thoughts:

Service from Thomann:
The guitar was dispatched the next day after my order was placed. The delivery was took 2 weeks which is longer than I have experienced before, the package seemed to be stuck in the export centre for a few days but obviously Thomann isn't at fault for this. The guitar arrived very well packaged and protected.

Finish:
The first thing I noticed was the weight of the guitar. It's very heavy compared to other teles I've held. This isn't a problem though as I'm used to the weight of Les Pauls and it makes the TE-30 feels very solid and sturdy. The paint job is very decent quality. The colour is more creamy than the pictures depict with a nice, even coating of high gloss lacquer. The grain of the ash is visible through the finish which looks very well. The only issue is there seems to be a small pen/pencil mark on the wood that is slightly visible through the finish, but it's not in a noticeable area so it doesn't bother me. The pickguard is well made, fits perfect and not cheap looking at all. However it is not quite to my taste so I replaced it with a black one. Just to note aftermarket pickguards aren't a direct fit so a little trimming and re-drilling is needed. The neck and headstock are finished in a light coat of lacquer, this keeps the original colour of the raw maple and doesn't have a shiny tacky finish which I really like.

Hardware:
Firstly the pickups, they are a lot better than I expected and sound as a Telecaster should. The neck sounds fantastic both clean and distorted. The bridge is good too and works well with the neck pup in the middle position, but it's missing some clarity and definition, it's usable but I replaced it anyway. The bridge causes no issues and is totally usable but for accurate intonation adjustments it might be worthwhile to swap the saddles out which I plan to do eventually. The tuners are one area where cost-cutting is evident. These should be the first thing to change, I had to tune the guitar every time I picked it up, and they didn't turn particularly well either. Some of the screws on both the tuners and string trees were only screwed in half way which led to a lot of rattle, I tried to screw them in the rest of the way but they wouldn't turn and eventually the top of one rounded off.

Playability:
First off the frets were not good, at all. The strings grated off them when performing bends. A fret level and re-crown sorted this and it now plays very well. The neck is very comfortable to play and the guitar is well balanced both on a strap and sitting down.

Overall this guitar is fantastic value for money. The body and neck are excellent quality so it makes it an ideal base for building a superb instrument on. Obviously at ¤89 there have been some corners cut with the hardware but after upgrading the tuners, strings, bridge pickup, a set up and some other mods of my own preference I now have a guitar that plays as well as one 10 times more expensive! I highly recommend the TE-30 if you are willing to put a small bit of more work into it to unleash it's full potential.
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Show variations of this product
Harley Benton TE-30 BE Standard Series
(607)
Harley Benton TE-30 BE Standard Series
to the product
115 €

Electric guitar Body: Ash, Bolted maple neck, Neck profile: C, Fretboard: Maple, Fretboard radius: 350 mm, Dot inlays, 21 Frets, Scale: 648 mm, Nut width: 42 mm, Neck radius: 13,78", Double-action...

  • Colour: Blonde
  • Pickups: SS
  • Fretboard: Maple
  • Tremolo: None
  • Body: Ash
  • Top: None
  • Neck: Maple
  • Frets: 21
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton TE-52 NA Vintage Series
(822)
Harley Benton TE-52 NA Vintage Series
to the product
166 €

Electric Guitar Body: American ash, Neck: Canadian maple with roseacer skunk stripe, bolt-on, Neck profile: C, Fretboard: Maple, Fretboard radius: 350 mm, Dot inlays, 21 Frets, Scale: 648 mm, Nut...

  • Colour: Natural
  • Pickups: SS
  • Fretboard: Maple
  • Tremolo: None
  • Body: Ash
  • Top: None
  • Neck: Maple
  • Frets: 21
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton Electric Guitar Kit T-Style
(1018)
Harley Benton Electric Guitar Kit T-Style

Electric Guitar Kit T-Style Complete DIY (Do it yourself) kit, Bolt-on neck, Solid wood body (wood colour may vary), Neck: Maple, Fretboard: Amaranth, DOT fretboard inlays, Double action truss rod,...

  • Colour: Natural
  • Pickups: SS
  • Tremolo: None
  • Body: Hardwood
  • Top: None
  • Neck: Maple
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton TE-40 TBK Deluxe Series
(495)
Harley Benton TE-40 TBK Deluxe Series
to the product
166 €

Electric Guitar Body: Basswood, Top: Ash, Bolt-on neck: Maple, Fretboard: Pau Ferro, Fretboard radius: 350 mm, 22 Frets, Scale: 648 mm, Nut width: 43 mm, Dual action truss rod, Pickups: 2 Roswell...

  • Colour: Black
  • Pickups: HH
  • Fretboard: Pau Ferro
  • Tremolo: None
  • Body: Basswood
  • Top: Ash
  • Neck: Maple
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton TE-20 SB Standard Series
(402)
Harley Benton TE-20 SB Standard Series

Electric Guitar Body: Basswood, Bolt-on maple neck, Neck profile: Modern C, Fretboard: Amaranth, Fretboard radius: 350 mm, Dot inlays, 22 Frets, Scale: 648 mm, Nut width: 42 mm, Double action truss...

  • Colour: Sunburst
  • Pickups: SS
  • Tremolo: None
  • Body: Hardwood
  • Top: None
  • Neck: Maple
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton TE-90QM Trans Red
(241)
Harley Benton TE-90QM Trans Red
to the product
218 €

Electric Guitar Body: Mahogany, chambered, Top: Flamed maple, Neck: Maple, bolt-on, Fretboard: Amaranth, 22 Frets, Scale: 648 mm, Nut width: 42 mm, Mother of pearl DOT fretboard inlays, Ivory body...

  • Colour: Red
  • Body: Mahogany
  • Pickups: P90, P90
  • Fretboard: Roseacer
  • Top: Maple
  • Neck: Maple
  • Tremolo: No
  • Frets: 22
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
Harley Benton TE-20 BK Standard Series
(303)
Harley Benton TE-20 BK Standard Series

Electric Guitar Bolt-on neck, Body: Basswood, Neck: Maple, Neck profile: Modern C, Fretboard: Armaranth, Fretboard radius: 350 mm, Dot fretboard inlays, 22 Frets, Scale: 648 mm, Nut width: 42 mm,...

  • Colour: Black
  • Pickups: SS
  • Tremolo: None
  • Body: Hardwood
  • Top: None
  • Neck: Maple
  • Frets: 21
  • Scale: 648 mm
  • Incl. Case: No
  • Incl. Bag: No
115 €
Including VAT; Excluding 20 € shipping

Dispatch expected by Tue, 11. August

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Available immediately

This item is in stock and can be dispatched immediately.

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