Harley Benton BJ-65Pro 6 String Banjo


6-String Banjo

  • Bluegrass Series
  • Solid maple body
  • Nato neck
  • Blackwood fretboard (Pinus radiata)
  • Mother of pearl "Spades" - fretboard inlays
  • 22 Frets
  • Scale length: 665 mm
  • Nut width: 43 mm
  • Headstock inlay
  • Remo head
  • Chrome Tone Bracket with 24 tension lugs
  • Deluxe machine heads
  • Graphite nut
  • Bridge: Maple / blackwood
  • Colour: Dark Cherry Sunburst
  • Matching replacement head: Article Nr: 156789 (not included)
Available since December 2014
Item number 345289
Sales Unit 1 piece(s)
Number Of Strings 6
Body Maple
Open Back No
Neck Nato
Frets 22
incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No
Pickup No
B-Stock from $204 available
The shipping costs are calculated on the checkout page.
Available at short notice (usually 2-5 days)
Available at short notice (usually 2-5 days)

This product has been ordered and is expected to arrives in the next few days.

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75 Customer ratings

4.5 / 5

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54 Reviews

Highly Recommended
Anthony3472 22.06.2015
I bought this Banjo as I wanted to experiment with Banjo sounds with the group I play with but actually can't play a 4 or 5 string. If you are considering trying this yourself, just go for it, you won't regret it!
The 6 string Banjo has been a revelation to me as I can get great Banjo sounds without the learning curve of learning new scales and chords etc. I'm finding that playing little licks and fills on this instrument really lifts our music. C&W, Irish and even Blues sound great on it
I have people come up to me all the time after gigs now telling me what a good Banjo player I am! (Actually I'm just a very average guitar player but I don't tell them that) This is just an aside about 6 string Banjos in general. They are great fun to experiment with. Don't think about it, do it.

As regards this particular model, I actually did a lot of research before buying this one as I thought it might be something that may be a whim purchase and something that I may wish to sell on afterwards. I didn't want to spend big money on something I mightn't actually like but didn't want to just buy the cheapest one because often, you do get what you pay for! ( inferior machine heads and hardware etc that have to be replaced afterwards)
This one, I thought, was going to be a good compromise between the two but actually, it has turned out to be an excellent instrument that can hold it's own with much more expensive ones. I feel that I may have found a really good secret bargain in this instrument.

If you do a bit of internet research you may or may not agree that this looks an awful lot like a Gewa Tennessee Premium 6 string Banjo?
That Banjo is at least double the price of this one and in my opinion I reckon they are virtually identical, barring the name on the headstock.

I have bought a few Harley Benton instruments over the years and in common with those, this has a few cosmetic blemishes. In general, the finish is really good though with nice inlays etc.
The basic build and construction is very good indeed.

The hardware I have found to be faultless. Solid tuners, Nut and Bridge cut properly. The projection is great with no buzzes or rattles and it took just a couple of tweaks to set it up perfectly. It even arrived in tune!
(Thomann are outstanding when it comes to the likes of this, in my opinion.)

Since buying it, I have installed a Shadow Piezo pickup for putting it through the mixer and I swear, I bring this instrument to every single gig I play now.

I can't comment on the HBJ-26 as I haven't played one. I actually was considering buying that instead but I will tell you this much, I don't for a second regret buying this Banjo and I highly recommend it. I'm glad I sent a little extra buying this one.
I am very happy with it and I hope this helps you.


Fantastic quality for the price.
Richard aus Q. 30.09.2019
For the price, it should have six stars for features.
- The double coordinator rods are a lot more stable for the neck and allow a precise adjustment of the neck angle (action height)
- The tailpiece is of the type that allow the strings to go up straight to the bridge.
- Tone ring brings the expected weight but I does bring something to the sound and volume.
- fairly good Remo skin.
- radiused fretboard (my guess around 15") decent fretwork and no sharp fret ends.
- Fret inlays are nicely done and are not too gaudy looking, having a nice pale color which I find less agravating than the cheap looking flashy fake "abalone" of some cheap brand.
- Tuners OK
- Weight: around 5 kilos. If you think that's heavy, you are not familiar with banjos. This is actually a decent weight for a tonering double coordinator banjo.
- Sound is where it is obviously not a 2,500€ banjo. Acceptable (usable) nonetheless.
- No 200€ banjos is going to be set up for optimal playability and sound out of the box. You have to set it up. But be careful and don't break it!
Highly recommended!


Every guitarist should have one
pengipete 17.01.2023
I'm an ageing guitar-player and have never owned or played a banjo before so a "banjitar" was the obvious quick and easy way to get that sound without having to start learning from scratch. I've got a couple of HB guitars and been impressed with the quality so this was the obvious choice. In fact, just going by "feel", this has the same feel to it as my Gretsch semi - like it's not going to fall apart any time soon. It arrives safely boxed with plenty of silica gel packs. There's minimal extras in the box - a hex spanner and box-wrench plus a hanging tag. The whole thing was then placed in a larger and very solid outer box along with a couple of other bits I bought at the same time and secured with extra packing. FWIW - it shipped to me in the UK without any issues taking just over a week from ordering to delivery by DHL.

It arrived today and although I have to admit I know nothing about banjos and could be missing important elements when checking, it appears to be pretty much flawless - no blemishes and the neck looks and feels great. Fret ends will be better after a bit of TLC and the frets themselves need polishing but they are really very good - better than on some guitars I bought that cost many times as much. Action is "highish" for a guitarist but no more so than most acoustic guitars - there's no fret buzz. What really surprised me is the weight - I've not weighed it on scales but it's sort of Les Paul heavy. Again, speaking as a guitarist - it feels comfortable to play seated - no weight to the fretting hand and doesn't roll around at all. The body width is not far off any electric guitar and overall, it "feels" no different to holding something like a Mexican Tele - the same weight and solidity. The neck feels entirely like a guitar - maybe more like a Gibson than a Fender - no issues at all there. Hand position when playing is going to need a bit of practice as any contact with the skin creates unwanted "noise" - but that's about me rather than this banjo. The unbranded machine heads are smooth and decent quality - the nut will benefit from lube (wound g-string "pings" - a very common problem with guitars and not a quality issue). All the inlays and binding are spot on and look great - and in case anyone asks (EytschPi42 - yes, you...) - the fret position dots are all nicely centred.

I'll need to do some homework on setting up a banjo - not sure yet if I need to adjust tensions, bridge and neck - even the idea of whipping-off the back of the instrument to adjust is alien to me - and a little bit scary. I have sussed how to adjust the tailpiece angle - the tailpiece was touching the skin, which I felt was not ideal but assume is just done for shipping. Also not sure on skin tension and feel it would have been useful if they'd included a "set-up instructions" flier - especially as this is most likely going to be bought by people like me who have little or no knowledge of banjos.

Do I recommend it - absolutely and without reservation. For £200-gbp, this is a lot of fun waiting to happen. If you're like me, you already own racks full of guitars and you still get GAS - Gear Acquisition Syndrome - buy this rather than yet another strat-clone - it's the same but different in a way that another guitar can't be.

And as an aside, I also looked at banjitars with built-in pick-ups and was seriously considering spending a fair bit more just to get that option until I had a nose online and discovered that it is incredibly easy to add your own piezo contact pickups to any banjo - and it can all be done for pennies with the parts easily bought from sites like Amazon. So if you need pickups, don't let that put you off - ten minutes work and the price of a pint and you'll be playing Smoke on the Water cajun style (confession - I plan on recording Status Quo and Oasis covers with this - just because). Having said that - if HB made this with a pick-up and pre-amp for a few pounds extra, I would have bought it - something for Thomann to look into because, again, guitarist will buy these six-stringers and we love to plug things in.


Easy to play, great sound!
ingaelk 29.03.2018
I'm a guitarist and wanted an easy transition to banjo, and this is it! 6 string in the style of a guitar, but with that wonderful bright twang of a banjo. The action is nice- not too high, which has been a problem for me in the past with banjos. It's loud- but that's usual for banjos. Sounds great with a capo. No buzzing on frets....straight out of the box, tuned it, and it was very playable. I won't need to make any adjustments- perfect for me. Definitely recommended.


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