Harley Benton DC-Junior TV Yellow

Electric Guitar

  • AKA "The Dirty Mustard DC"
  • Body: Mahogany
  • Set-in mahogany neck
  • Fretboard: Amaranth
  • Fretboard inlays: Dots
  • Neck profile: C
  • Fretboard radius: 305 mm
  • Scale: 628 mm
  • Nut width: 43 mm
  • Graphite nut
  • 22 Medium jumbo frets
  • Pickup: Roswell P90D Alnico-5 Dog Ear single coil
  • Volume and tone controls
  • 3-Ply black pickguard
  • Wrap Around bridge
  • Wilkinson vintage-style machine heads with 15:1 gear ratio
  • Ex-factory stringing: .010 - .046
  • Colour: TV Yellow
  • Suitable case: Article no. 172299 (not included)
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  • Doom
  • Metal
  • Bluesrock
  • Mosh
  • Progressive
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Further Information

Colour Yellow
Soundboard Mahogany
Top None
Neck Mahogany
Fretboard Amarant
Frets 22
Scale 628 mm
Pickup System P90
Tremolo Nej
Incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No

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Our most popular Double Cut Guitars
125 Customer Ratings
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4.6 /5
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A fun little toy guitar but seriously flawed.
TrEr, 22.11.2020
EDIT: After testing the guitar a bit more I've realized that the pickup is mounted much too low and because of this the guitar sounds very unfocused, especially on the lower strings. This being a dogear P90 it is obviously not possible to adjust the pickup height and unlike every other P90 I've owned nothing happens when I try to adjust the pole pieces either. I'm starting to think this isn't really a proper P90, at least not with the same construction as a classic P90. In any case, this pickup needs to be shimmed to raise it. Unfortunately Thomann do not sell these shims. To make matters worse these Roswell P90s have completely different dimensions than true vintage spec P90s which means that shims from other manufacturers can't be used either . I can only find the correct sized shims at an online shop that doesn't ship to my country. This means I will have to cut the shims myself which is obviously a HUGE hassle and frankly not worth it. I will probably end up selling this guitar at a loss.

I've also found that the bridge is installed in a slightly wrong position, making it impossible to intonate the guitar 100% (at least with the strings I've installed, Thomastik Superalloy .010). I can get it ALMOST within acceptable intonation but this is simply not good enough.

I can NOT recommend this guitar, even at this low price. To fix all the problems you will probably end up paying more than the cost of the guitar.

My original review (slightly edited to clarify a couple of things):

I've had some amazing experiences with Harley Benton guitars but I've had some pretty bad ones too. This one turned out to be neither. Far from poor but not really that great either.

The overall build quality is decent. The hardware works fine although the tuners feel kinda cheap and flimsy. Not top quality but more than adequate I guess.

I can't say I'm a huge fan of this type of bridge though. Installing strings and adjusting intonation can be a bit fiddly so I wish they had come up with something else. It's not like it's a 100% vintage correct Gibson replica anyway. I've seen more or less identical cheap "DC Juniors" from other "in house" brands too. We're obviously talking about the cheapest possible Asian manufacturing here so I guess designing a slightly more user friendly bridge was never gonna happen.

The metal used in the hardware isn't the best quality and the slotted head on one of the intonation screws started stripping the first time I touched it.

The worst part was the nut though. It was cut far too high, making the guitar hard to play and the intonation also suffered from it. It was practically unplayable out of the box. After filing it down a bit the guitar got about 100 times better. It's a shame that such a minor detail ruins the first impression of an otherwise decent guitar.

The rest was for the most part ok. Decent craftsmanship for a cheap mass manufactured instrument. The finish was flawless, although whoever mixed the paint can't possibly ever have seen a true TV Yellow guitar. This one is considerably darker and more like mustard. Not a problem for me, I actually like this dark mustard look better. No one will ever mistake this for a vintage nitro finish though. It does have a bit of that "a bit TOO shiny" cheap guitar look. And why do they stain the fingerboard? It kinda looks like an attempt to make it look like fake ebony. It would have been much nicer if it actually looked like wood. It's supposed to be amaranth (which is a reasonably nice looking wood) but it looks more like black plastic.

The neck/fretwork was surprisingly good but the frets they've used are VERY high which I'm personally not a huge fan of. The profile/radius didn't feel quite right to me either. For some reason the neck felt wider and bulkier than it really is. But I guess this may be down to personal taste. To be fair I tend to prefer guitars with a lower radius fretboard than this one.

The pickup sounds quite good but is picks up a LOT of noise. To be fair this applies to all P90s which is why P90 equipped guitars need excellent shielding. I haven't looked inside the guitar yet but I'm guessing there is precisely zero shielding inside (or at least very inadequate). That will have to be sorted out for this guitar to be usable for anything other than home practice.

With only one bridge pickup this will never be the most versatile guitar but can still be a lot of fun. The Harley Benton "SG"-models are probably better value but the DC Junior does have a sort of quirky charm and a couple of interesting colors to choose from.

If the nut had been cut correctly I would have given the DC Junior a better rating considering the price but sadly it wasn't really playable out of the box. I guess stuff like this must be expected on an ultra cheap mass manufactured instrument with limited quality control. If you have the skills to fix things like this yourself you can get a fun little guitar for very little money. If not I would probably stay away, or at least factor in the cost of a proper setup by a luthier (or an experienced guitar tech). That might end up costing almost as much as the guitar though... Buying cheap isn't always cheaper.
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Unbeatable for the price but it's worth upgrading it
shauny155, 10.10.2020
I bought this guitar over a year ago now from Thomann and I had to wait a few weeks for it to arrive (which I was informed about in advance) well packed and without damage.
The first thing is it isn't TV yellow. It's more like a Dijon mustard colour which is no bad thing but was a bit of a shock.
The set up was ok but the nut had been cut a little lopsided (it was slightly higher at one side than the other). This didn't bother me that much as I wasn't expecting that much for the price so I took it to my local guitar shop who did a full set up on it.
The neck is beautiful, slim and easy to play. The whole fit and finish of the guitar feels like a much more expensive instrument which for under £200 is just what you're looking for. The Wilkinson Tuners work as they should and the electronics all seem solid and crackle free.
I'm one of those players that likes to tinker with my guitars.
After playing it for a while and doing a few gigs with it I found that the action was a little too high for my taste and the design of the bridge wouldn't allow me to lower it any further so I bought a new wraparound bridge (cost about £18). I also found the pickup was squeeling a bit at high gain settings so I swapped that for another (£35).
With the set up, new bridge, new pickup and a set of locking strap buttons (essential if you want to keep your guitar in one piece) my £189 guitar has cost me about £300. I still feel this was a bargain for such a solid instrument.
If you're looking for a LP Junior for a fraction of the price of the main brand then you could do much worse than this.
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Nice not expensive guitar
laurentium, 18.11.2020
I really love this guitar. I never had any guitar with 628mm scale length, and I must say I got to love it for that. I play mostly jazz, but really want to play some rock stuff sometimes, and wanted to have a guitar that can do that. Of course, for the versatility, I would like to see a neck pickup also on this guitar, so I could play even jazz on it. I think it should sound good, as it seems to have a less brighter sound than other guitars, with maple caps. First I thought I would get it to a luthier to get it routed for a neck pickup, but then I started reading about the way Junior type of guitars connect to the body, and realized that modding it could make the neck not stand the pressure and ruin the guitar. Especially if I would like to have some 11s strings on it. So I guess I would buy an another Harley Benton Special Double Cut TV Yellow with 2 P90, if they decide to make one. Until then I am enjoying this one.
The guitar came setup really well. I measured all the specs, and it came close to what Gibson recommends for it's solid body guitars. As I own it already, for almost a year, I got the chance to make some weather influenced adjustments of the truss rod, and it holds up really well.
Tuners - not the best for staying in tune, but still ok.
Love the color. It's not the TV Yellow as you would expect on classic guitars, but I think I like it better, this mustard yellow.
Still, you should know that the fretboard is stained. They made it so, to look close to black. And the stain they used gets on your fingers after you play it, but can be easily washed away. Eventually it goes away, after several weeks/months (depends on how often you play it). But no big deal, I can live with that, for the price ))
I must say I'm really impressed with the quality you get for this price, and I mean mainly for playability. Good job HB!
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Beautiful finish and tone
Rob Mac, 09.09.2020
I'd wanted this for a long time. I'm in Australia. Unfortunately there were problems with postage (coronavirus?) and the cost was much more. The guitar finish was perfect except........ the bridge wasn't in the right spot. I had to extend the position screws by small metal blocks at the posts of the rear of the bridge. It now intonated perfectly using the adjustable saddles. It plays and sounds great. Perfect vintage Rock/Blues machine! I sent my info to Thomann with pics of my mod and they kindly sent me a discount. A great company to deal with.
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Show variations of this product
Harley Benton DC-Junior TV Yellow
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Harley Benton DC-Junior TV Yellow

Electric Guitar AKA "The Dirty Mustard DC", Body: Mahogany, Set-in mahogany neck, Fretboard: Amaranth, Fretboard inlays: Dots, Neck profile: C, Fretboard radius: 305 mm, Scale: 628 mm, Nut width:...

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Electric Guitar Body: Mahogany, Set-in mahogany neck, Fretboard: Ebony, Fretboard inlays: Dots, Neck profile: Fat '59, Scale: 628 mm (24.72"), Fretboard radius: 305 mm (12.01"), Nut width: 43 mm...

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Electric Guitar Body: Mahogany, Set-in mahogany neck, Fretboard: Amaranth, Fretboard inlays: White dots, Neck profile: C, Fretboard radius: 305 mm, Scale: 628 mm, Nut width: 43 mm, Graphite nut, 22...

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Electric Guitar Body: Mahogany, Set-in neck: Mahogany, Fretboard: Macassar ebony, Fretboard inlays: Dots, Neck profile: Fat '59, Fretboard radius: 305 mm, Scale: 628 mm, Nut width: 43 mm, Nut:...

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Harley Benton DC-Junior Faded Brown

Electric Guitar Body: Mahogany, Set-in mahogany neck, Fretboard: Amaranth, Fretboard inlays: White dots, Neck profile: C, Fretboard radius: 305 mm, Scale: 628 mm, Nut width: 43 mm, Graphite nut, 22...

Harley Benton DC-Junior Faded Blue
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Harley Benton DC-Junior Faded Blue

Electric Guitar Body: Mahogany, Set-in mahogany neck, Fretboard: Amaranth, Fretboard inlays: White dots, Neck profile: C, Fretboard radius: 305 mm, Scale: 628 mm, Nut width: 43 mm, Graphite nut, 22...

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Harley Benton DC-Junior FAT LH Faded Cherry

Electric Guitar Left-hand model, Body: Mahogany, Set-in mahogany neck, Fretboard: Ebony, Fretboard inlays: Dots, Neck profile: Fat '59, Fretboard radius: 305 mm (12.01"), Scale: 628 mm (24.72"),...

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