Harley Benton TE-52 NA Vintage Series

967 Customer Ratings
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4.6 /5
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You get what you pay for. Nothing more.
Maple71, 28.11.2020
After reading so many good reviews on this guitar I buyed it, as a second guitar. At first glance the guitar is gorgeous, the wood body and the painting are beautiful.

I was not expecting very much, but I am honestly very unhappy with the purchase. I was expecting at least a guitar that I loved to play some blues. I would had returned it to Thomann, but since I modified while trying to set it up, I cannot return it.

Out of the box the action is insanely high, so I tried lowering it, and the nightmare began. Trussrod + action setting is a nightmare. I spent a lot of hours trying to set it up, and the results are still unacceptable for me. It's almost impossibile to find the right spot, and cannot get rid of a lot string buzz without having a ridiculous high action.

The neck pickup is fine, the bridge pickup has an acid sound, you must work with 20% tone to compensate it.

Fret leveling is poor, fret finishing is null, they rasp out of the box. I mirror finished them with a leather strap. The nut is made of cheap plastic, one tuner was really unstable so I replaced all of them with Gotoh vintage tuners, which are fine. I had to enlarge the holes to 9mm.

I replaced the string trees with Graphtec ones, which are fine.

In conclusion, this is my first and last purchase of a Harley Benton guitar. I can understand the will to produce a low cost guitar, but believe me, I am sure that buyers would spend a few more bucks for a decent Graphtec nut, Graphtec saddles and good tuners (with 60$ you can have them all). But first of all, a decent setup and a reliable neck are the real problem with this guitar.

I learned a good lesson here. There are so many small details that make a guitar a joy to play, and they are all missing here.

Yes, on the wall is a gorgeous guitar. On the wall.
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Overall beautiful guitar. But falls short on quality checks and playability out of the box
Alex Terry, 01.04.2020
Based on reviews and my previous experience with a magnificent Harley Benton J Bass purchase I jumped at the bit to add a T-Style guitar to my collection. Just in time as my main guitar has just collapsed on me and needed a replacement desperately!

I received the first guitar and wasn’t happy with the setup out of the box (more on this later) as there was significant fret buzz along the neck with truss rod and action adjustments were not fixing it. The radius was perfect and intonation fine as checked per adjustment made however, the problem couldn’t be resolved by a secondary party. Thomann were amazing, and arranged for a secondary guitar to be sent. Today 01/04/2020 , I received the replacement to find the neck was partially separated from the body. I immediately contacted the customer service team and spoke to Micah and his Colleague. His colleague had suggested damage during shipping, however both the outer and inner box were free from any damage and were extremely well packed, leaving me to pursue whether the guitar had been checked prior to shipment. Now anyone who has bought a Harley Benton knows it comes with a card slip stating that the product has been checked. Unfortunately, Micah colleague informed me that the products do not get checked prior to shipping and will only be checked if requested at the point of purchase.

My complaint on this product is to make sure you request the product to get checked prior to shipping. This is vital to do otherwise you could end up in my situation. I’ll be without a guitar for near a month now and whilst the customer service was exceptional on both of my guitar issues, there must be more done to ensure that even budget guitars are checked and arrive in a playable condition.

I wish I could include pictures and videos to back up the claims, but it is imperative that you request the item to be checked, and if you are not confident with setting up guitars, to have this checked by a second party. Luckily I am confident, but if this was to happen to a less informed person they could have a dud of a guitar on their hands, or an expensive labouring bill following a setup.
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got a bad one
Ahmed Salah, 09.05.2020
That was my first guitar.
The setup was very bad, the action was very high and the high E string was on the edge of the fretboard, and the high E string kept breaking. It was very frustrating for me as a beginner.
I kept trying to fix the issue until I have worn out the truss-rod adjustment screw and the neck was stuck in a back bow position and became useless.
What I found out later is that the neck pocket was not straight. If I had any knowledge back then I would have returned it instantly.
I tried to get a replacement neck from Thomann but they refused.
The guitar sounds and looks great, but unfortunately I got a bad one. I hope Thomann team reads this review and sends me a new one or a replacement neck.
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On balance.... think
10.07.2016
Curiosity and the Tele-shaped hole in my guitar pile forced my hand with this purchase.
I have no problems with playing a bargain bucket guitar in a live situation or just for fun... IF it can cut it and this review is as every other review I write, simply honest.
First, let's get the cost defence that seems to be at the heart of those reviewers who dribble about how great these are for the price.
Yes, it is a low value item but;
Out of the box,
the frets need crowning,
the strings are unusable,
the pickups are garbage,
it was wired incorrectly,
the ferrules (string through at the back) are not aligned,
the tuners are woeful.
In the first few days I've crowned the frets, rewired as the factory had effectively wired both pickups out of phase for every switch position, replaced the awful plastic nut and shimmed the neck pocket.
It now plays much better but... and here's where you need to think carefully about this... you will want to upgrade almost every part.
If you're after a platform for messing about, it's OK, but you will need to mess about a lot before it even becomes passable.
If you want something playable out-of-the-box, look elsewhere.
You pay little, get a lot... but it really is, overall, pretty poor quality.
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Too heavy to use
btangrea, 06.12.2020
If the weight was clearly stated (10.5 lbs) I would not have purchased this guitar. I am pleased with everything else about it.
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Harley Benton TE-52 NA Vintage Series

$151 €125.21
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