Harley Benton ST-62CC MN Charcoal Frost

48

Electric Guitar

  • Body: Basswood
  • Bolt-on neck: Vintage caramelised maple
  • Fretboard: Vintage caramel maple
  • Dot fretboard inlays
  • Neck profile: C
  • Scale length: 648 mm (25.50")
  • Fretboard radius: 305 mm (12")
  • Nut width: 42 mm (1.65")
  • 22 Frets
  • Pickups: 3 Roswell STA Alnico 5 single coils
  • 1 x Volume and 2 x tone controls
  • 5-Way switch
  • 3-Ply mintgreen pickguard
  • Synchronized tremolo
  • Kluson style machine heads
  • Gold hardware
  • Strings: .009 - .042
  • Colour: 60's Custom Charcoal Frost
In catalogo dal Maggio 2020
Numero di articolo 464713
Unitá incluse 1 Pezzo
Colour Charcoal
Body Basswood
Top None
Neck Caramelised Canadian Maple
Fretboard Caramelized Canadian Maple
Frets 22
Scale 648 mm
Pickups SSS
Tremolo Standard
incl. Bag No
incl. Case No
B-Stock da € 146 disponibile
€ 169
Spedizione gratuita, incl. IVA
disponibile
disponibile

Questo prodotto è disponibile e può essere spedito immediatamente.

Informazioni sulla spedizione
1

48 Valutazioni dei clienti

4.5 / 5

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Caratteristiche

Suono

Qualità

33 Recensioni

google translate gb
Sfortunatamente si è verificato un errore, La preghiamo di riprovare più tardi.
EK
Exceptional guitar, full stop (once you've set it up).
Emlyn K Helicopter 21.01.2021
IN BRIEF:
This is one of the nicest playing, sounding and looking guitars I've picked up in 31 years, seriously. In fit, finish and hardware it's comparable to guitars 5-6 times the price. But it's also made in China for pennies, shipped halfway across the world and given a very brief once-over by the QC folks at Thomann so you WILL have to set it up yourself to get the best from it. But for this price, you can afford to either learn how to do it yourself or hire an experienced tech.

Having bought a Harley Benton ST-70 Rosewood Strat three years ago I was expecting this ST-62 to be a good guitar I'd have to do some work on (sharp frets, setup) with terrible/medicocre parts I'd need to upgrade (tuners/pickups). But, some fret/setup issues aside (see below), I'm happy to report that Harley Benton have made significant improvements in several key areas – notably the pickups, tuners and especially the pickguard.


BODY:
As noted in other reviews of this model, the colour bears little resemblance to the product photos. It's much lighter and also changes slightly depending on the lighting and angle, thanks to the subtle metallic flake under the mid-tone grey – looks great, although perhaps not the pronounced 3D effect you might see on a Fender. I happen to really like it but be warned if you're expecting a deep emerald hue as the photos might lead you to believe. Finish is flawless, as is the neck fitting.


NECK:
Narrow and chunky profile is very comfortable and resonant. Nut width is 42mm in common with higher-end Squires and Mexican Fenders rather than the wider 43mm(ish) of USA Fenders and most Gibsons. The neck profile is an unusually flat (for a Strat) 13.5” - I'm personally not of the opinion that this makes much difference other than it feels great and the strings don't choke when you bend them.

Neck and fretboard varnish is a very nice (and again, flawless) satin that to my eyes is tinted just right – not the anemic pale of modern Fenders nor the sticky dark gloss of some lower-cost Strats. The back of the neck felt a little powdery at first but this soon rubbed off after a few hours of playing. It's now fast and smooth.

The frets... now I was expecting the fretwork to be poor on a guitar selling for less than £150 and initially I was concerned about how scratchy they felt (and sounded!), plus some of the fret-ends were a little sharp. The scratchy finish completely disappeared after about 5-6 hours of normal use, and while I've smoothed off some of the worst fret ends with a small file, the issues have mostly vanished after a week. I wonder if this could be due to the neck shrinking a bit during it's long transit across the world during the winter and extended stay in customs (thanks, Brexit...) but then returned to normal after a week in a warm room? I'd certainly expect this with a rosewood fingerboard (which can dry out and shrink enough to leave sharp frets), but not so much with a maple 'board like this. Either way, the issues I had when it came out of the box are almost entirely gone after a week – so if you get similar issues with your ST-62 give it a little time before reaching for Thomann's complaint button.

Other than the initial setup (see below), all fretwork is level with no dead spots.


PICKUPS/ELECTRICS
These Roswell ALNICO single coils sound really good. I was fully expecting to have to upgrade but there's no point unless I want to use the guitar for metal – in which case a Hotrails in the bridge would do the job nicely. Tone is closer to Tex-Mex (ie. slightly darker and hotter) than vintage spec, and all five positions are eminently usable and distinct. Noise is low, other than the usual hum you get with single-coils.

Note that the pole-pieces of the neck pickup don't line up with the strings, especially on the 1st and 6th where they're out completely. This is an aspect you'll see on vintage strats and Mexican Fenders due to the use of a common bobbin size on all three pickups – while it's less noticable on modern USA Strats due to their wider necks. Slightly annoying aesthetics aside, there's an ever-so-noticable volume drop just on the high string – not enough to make be want to replace the pickup.

As if to make up for it, the staggered pole-pieces (all middle poles higher to match the fretboard radius) feature a slightly raised high-E pole on the neck pickup only. I might see if I can adjust it further out when I restring the guitar. But, again, this misalignment is something you'd find on almost every Strat ever made.

Special mention should be made about the smoothly finished, rounded tops of the pole-pieces. Less chance of the strings catching on them.

Incidentally, these Roswells are a massive improvement on the Wilkinson-branded pickups that came with the ST-70 from three years ago. Those are ok but a little bland, these are easily on par with the big brands.

Volume/Tone pots and 5-way switch are all solid-feeling, smooth in travel and crackle-free. Again, no need whatsoever to upgrade.


HARDWARE:
Another area I was expecting to have to upgrade was the hardware – namely the tuners and bridge. The tuners are easy enough to replace – Thomann sell a locking set that fit these guitars – but the bridge had me worried as replacement is not straightforward as the screw holes don't always match up to whatever 'better' bridge you might buy. I was especially concerned about the comically thin zinc block that the trem on these guitars come with, which, if you believe internet hype, is the cause of 99% of all Bad Tone.

Well, I'm here to tell you that this is not so. This trem sounds fantastic, deep and resonant, and it returns to pitch (after minor wobbles) without any bother at all. In fact, the tapering thick-to-thin zinc block allows you to go down all the way to floppy-string times like you would on a Floyd Rose, although as you might imagine this will more likely put the guitar out of tune. It also looks gorgeous!

Compared to the, I guess, higher quality Wilkinson trem fitted to the ST-70 Rosewood strat (with its reassuringly hefty steel block), I'd say this sounds and feels better. And, sonically at least, it beats the hell out of any locking trem I've ever owned.

Tuners are the vintage 'split' style, which in theory means you can lock the strings inside the shaft for a more stable result. Hmmm... they do feel a bit stiff and initially I had a great deal of tuning issues. But, since these issues pretty much vanished after 5 hours or so of normal playing, I think the real culprit is more likely to be that the strings the guitar came with (D'Addario 10-46) were not stretched when fitted. I'm not saying 'tuning an ST-62 doesn't', but I am reserving judgement for a few months and may upgrade to a locking set.

The two string-trees are of the largely useless bent-saddle type, one of which rendered even more so by the fact that it's installed in a slightly offset position. This is the only (and I mean only) quality issue I've encountered on this guitar so I can't in fairness deduct a star for it. As it is, its the unnecessary one on the middle strings so I've bypassed it completely. The string tree on the two top strings will be replaced by the far more sensible roller-type when I get around to it.


PICKGUARD:
Yes, a special category for the pickguard! I feel I should mention it for two reasons – the first being that this is a beautiful looking mint-green, three ply plate that genuinely makes a difference to the sound of the guitar. This I know because the ST-70 from three years ago came with a single-ply, black plate that was so insubstantial it may as well have been made from a bin-bag. I upgraded it to a proper one and that instantly had a huge effect on the acoustic resonance of the guitar. So, full marks to Harley Benton for finally listening to customer feedback and fitting a decent plate!

The other reason is that these come with not one but two polythene covers. I pulled off the scruffy, obvious first one when I unpacked the guitar but didn't realise there was a second, close-fitting laminate until a full week later. Reader, peeling that second one off was more satisfying than anything I can print on this family-oriented website.


SETUP:
Its all been roses so far, hasn't it? So, straight out of the box: the action was too high, the trem was set flat, the neck needed a tweak to get it right and the frets were scratchy and sharp. But once I fixed all that, it's a superb, near-faultless instrument. Should we deduct points because it didn't come out of the box perfectly set up? In my view, no. If you want that then buy your (waaaaay more expensive) guitar from a local guitar shop and if it isn't to your liking then you can ask them to sort it out before you take it home.

The guitar being reviewed here is one rung above the cheapest guitar you can buy, made in China and shipped via a mail order company you'll never talk to. As such, I wouldn't expect it to arrive with a half-decent, let alone perfect setup. And certainly, without any upgrades at all, I didn't expect it to sound, look and play as well as the Gibson Les Paul it's currently sat next to.

NOTE: this is my 35th guitar in 31 years and third Harley Benton. I've played countless other guitars, built a couple and broken a few more learning how to set them up. This one is currently my favourite.
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google translate gb
Sfortunatamente si è verificato un errore, La preghiamo di riprovare più tardi.
E
Great Strat
Emilius 06.10.2021
I use this guitar every week for playing live gigs. I think that is enough.
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google translate gb
Sfortunatamente si è verificato un errore, La preghiamo di riprovare più tardi.
A
Great guitar if you know how to setup a guitar
Anonimo 04.11.2022
The guitar looks great and sounds nice, but the lower E saddle looks like was filed poorly (the gold finish is gone on the contact point and it's rough/scratchy) which creates friction, affecting the tuning stability, plus the pivot screw on the lower E is clearly different from the other 5.
All things considered, it's a good guitar for 150 euros if you know how to do a proper setup.
Detailed review below.

Neck:
The best part is the neck, caramelised maple (I guess it's a "light roast"), with a light satin finish. The fretboard has a similar but near the nut it felt completely unfinished. There were a couple of dents along the fretboard edges.
Some of the frets felt rough along the fretboard edges, but you wouldn't notice it if it was your first guitar.
The frets feel a bit scratchy on the strings when you bend, but it goes away with a fine fret eraser or simply with time by just playing the guitar.
The nut is probably plastic (not specified)

Body:
The body is ok, the paint job is uniform and nice. Looking at the back against some light you can see one glue line running along the body in the middle and one near the smaller horn (this one also running through the body). The front looks perfect.

Hardware:
The vintage tuners are ok as well as the string trees (fixed, not rolling)
The bridge was impressive - kept the tuning after various dive bombs on all the strings except for lower E and A - but they were detuning by half a semitone. (and can probably be fixed by working on the friction points without necessarily changing anything. The springs are a bit stiff.
The strap buttons work fine and are sturdy. The screws are fine, apart from the one on the bridge on the lower E which is clearly different from the other 5 screws. The corresponding saddle looks poorly filed and lost its gold color where it makes contact with the string.
The pickguard is slightly tilted but it doesn't affect the playability.
Neckplate looks good and also has a plastic pad underneath (i guess to improve adhesion).

The action was fine.
The intonation was slightly off but it's a quick and easy fix.

Electronics:
The pickups are actually good, the wiring is ok, the shielding is fine (missing near the pickups but doesn't seem necessary), the jack is fine and everything is grounded adequately.
The 5-way switch works fine but it's a bit too light and you can easily switch the position accidentally while playing.
The potentiometers feel scratchy, however, they don't make noise and work fine.

Summary:
The only noticeable issue was with the lower E saddle (minor functional issue) and the pivot screw (aesthetic issue).
It's not perfect, but if you have some experience you can make it a very nice guitar with a simple setup.
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google translate gb
Sfortunatamente si è verificato un errore, La preghiamo di riprovare più tardi.
C
Beside the mint green pickguard im satisfied.
ChristianFer92 27.05.2020
A beauty of guitar. The color of the guitar its just splendid.
No neckpockets, No visible damage whatsoever, in correct tone.
Pick ups sound pretty decent. Whenever you need a boost on them you could just use an EQ pedal and boost the signal.
Tuners can be the only thing i might write about. They do the job, but just to be sure, mine, has been replaced by locking tuners.

Now to the point:
I have received mine with a mint green pickguard, which its NOT what shows on the pictures, nor on the description. It doesn't make it looks bad, but I would have preferred with the white pickguards from stock. I have contacted Thoman about it and apparently they have received ALL of this guitars with the mint green pickguard from the manufacturer.
Once again, a great service from Thomann as they were kind enough to refund partially in order for me to get a whit pickguard.
I am utterly satisfied with my third Harley Benton ST 62.
The neck feels just A1 and it looks just delicious.
I can recommend this guitar because Im truly happy about everything about it.
Sound, looks,feel, quality,and features.
Recomended 100%
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