Harley Benton guitars

Discussion in 'Non-Fender S-Type Guitar Forum' started by Stonetone, Jun 12, 2020.

  1. Stonetone

    Stonetone Most Honored Senior Member

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  2. Jesse414

    Jesse414 Senior Stratmaster

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    Looks pretty cool. I think the only way the prices are that low is automation of the build process and cheaper labor costs. And buying all the parts in bulk. :)
     
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  3. simoncroft

    simoncroft Still playing. Still learning! Silver Member

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    Basically, I'd say what Thomann has done is "cut out the middle man". Back in the 1970s, "cut out the middle man" was often the reason given in a newspaper advertisement for why you were buying cheap: it was coming straight from the factory to you. Usually, what you got cheap wasn't very good! It was just stuff that wasn't selling too well through other channels.

    Thomann is clever and more honest than that. Traditionally, retail guitar stores bought from distributors, who in turn bought from manufacturers. Thomann worked out that if the 'store' is a web site, and they have established a good working relationship with manufacturers in the Far East, they could cut out the "distributor" (and arguably even the "store" to a large extent). So they buy direct from the factories and sell to you.

    So, you really are buying at closer to "trade price".

    The downsides are you have no chance to play before purchase, plus it pretty much destroys the business model of most musical instrument stores, and even some distributors. You will get a lot of guitar for your money though.
     
  4. Stonetone

    Stonetone Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yup very well said Simon, and yeah my next axe will be a Harley Benton :thumb:
     
  5. soulman969

    soulman969 Most Honored Senior Member

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    Yup, you nailed it. Less fingers in the pie so no added markups to accommodate distribution when you are both the distributor and the retailer. I have seldom seen a bad review on one of their products either. As a buyer you just need to do some homework ahead of time and know what you're buying.
     
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  6. Lonn

    Lonn Mod Admin Staff Member

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    I too can't believe the value for money. I bought this one earlier this week still in the box for $145 but I'm pretty sure they're under $200 from Thomas. Every bit as good as a Squier CV Strat at literally less than half the price. It's flawless.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. Baelzebub

    Baelzebub Dr. Stratster

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    That Roasted Bengal Fusion is a real beaut.
     
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  8. Ebidis

    Ebidis Providing the world with flat bends since 1985

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    Yep, I love mine.

    IMG_4406.JPG

    As @simoncroft and @soulman969 said; cutting out the middle man (and the entire distribution/dealer network) saves a lot of money.

    I was a bit skeptical, but all of the raving reviews convinced me to take a shot. I'm glad I did! My HB guitar turned out to be an INCREDIBLE value.
     
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  9. Baelzebub

    Baelzebub Dr. Stratster

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    That Roasted Bengal Fusion is a real beaut.
     
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  10. myredstrat

    myredstrat Senior Stratmaster

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    would really like some follow up reviews from the various HB owners in a years time, see if the "love" is still there. I'm still skeptical, so please please, prove me wrong
     
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  11. Baelzebub

    Baelzebub Dr. Stratster

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    That's a sharp pickguard Lonn...what is it? Looks like brushed copper..
     
  12. Ebidis

    Ebidis Providing the world with flat bends since 1985

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    Remind me in a year and I'll follow up on that.:thumb:
     
  13. soulman969

    soulman969 Most Honored Senior Member

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    Not exactly sure what could go wrong. Any obvious flaws in material or build would be noticeable immediately and Thomann is backing them as a dealer not just an importer so their reputation is on the line if the product fails.

    Thomann is not gonna just disappear as a major musical instrument dealer and in this case they would appear to have full control of the product from design and build to QC and final delivery plus warranty following that. If their Asian builder can't produce product that meet their standards they return the product and find another supplier.

    I don't see a whole lot of risk for a buyer especially at those prices. FWIW I'd rather buy a HB from Thomann than gamble on buying a Firefly through Amazon. JMHO
     
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  14. Ebidis

    Ebidis Providing the world with flat bends since 1985

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    I agree with all of your post.

    And I've seen a few "HB vs Firefly" videos on youtube, and every one of them said the HB was better.
     
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  15. soulman969

    soulman969 Most Honored Senior Member

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    Got a friend whose addicted to them mostly because of their cost. He tends to shuffle through a whole lot of gear which I believe is because he grows bored with something and wants to move on to something else.

    I've bought two of his guitars in the past. Both less than a few months old and both rather incredible guitars one of which I've customized heavily just because I wanted a Tele that was an "outside the box" guitar.

    I can buy imports like Epiphone for $400 that need very little in the way of upgrades whereas he'd prefer to spend $150-$200 on a Firefly that would need $150-$200 in parts alone to get it even close to an equivalent Epiphone. They aren't junk but they look and feel like a $200 and if he wants to sell one who'll buy it except other Firefly aficionados?

    It's the same basic marketing strategy of selling direct or using Amazon but quite frankly I'll trust Thomann and their desire to guard their well deserved rep far more than Amazon who would sell any product being made just as long as they can make a buck doing it. And even with the HB product I want specs that assure me that I can use easily obtainable parts with which to upgrade them if I choose.

    PS: And in an effort not to piss off any Firefly owners as I said. They aren't junk but they also are what they are......a $200 guitar give or take $50.
     
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  16. Ebidis

    Ebidis Providing the world with flat bends since 1985

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    I have found that my HB (SC Junior) needs no upgrades whatsoever. Just a basic setup, and it's good to go.

    Of course I went beyond the basic setup a bit... just because I'm picky, and I realized that I'm gonna own this guitar forever, so I tweaked it a bit, but it was playable right out of the box.

    However, I have not, and see no need to, change any of the stock hardware, or electronics/pickups.

    The thing that impressed me the most was... the fret work was perfect right out of the box. Seriously. Better than most (much more) expensive guitars I have dealt with in the last 30+ years; and I am hearing the same thing from a lot of other buyers.
     
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  17. JamesE

    JamesE Strat-O-Master

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    Everything changes - sometimes good and sometimes bad. I was in London a year ago and put aside an hour to walk along Denmark Street, where I had spent so many Saturdays so long ago. I was saddened to see most of the shops boarded up.

    Lampedusa: If we want things to stay as they are, things will have to change.
     
  18. stratocarlster

    stratocarlster Most Honored Senior Member

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    AUD$634 landed (equivalent to $590 Canadian), including an eye-watering $190 shipping ... that's the price of living downunder! Ironically though, I'm probably closer to the factory.

    Even @Ebidis 's delightful little LP Junior would be $500 here ... mind you that's still cheaper than the equivalent Epiphone at $599 ... https://www.megamusiconline.com.au/epiphone-les-paul-junior-electric-guitar-tobacco-burst
     
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  19. Ebidis

    Ebidis Providing the world with flat bends since 1985

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    Knowing what I know now, I would still pay $500 (USD) for this guitar.

    I'm not kidding. It is that good.
     
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  20. Thrup'ny Bit

    Thrup'ny Bit Grand Master Curmudgeon

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    I can't do a year, but after six months I'm as happy with mine as the day I got it. It's needed no work at all, just a set up to make it even better than out of the box.

    Junior5.png

    It cost me £165, free delivery and took 3 days to arrive. I would happily have paid twice that, if I had picked it up in a shop and played it.
     
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