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I own a Harley Benton club

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by JACink, Dec 26, 2014.

  1. ROGI


    Apr 25, 2005
    Croatia, Europe
    here is the review!

  2. MovinTarget


    Jan 30, 2018
    Maryland, USA
    FYI 1mm action at 12th fret = .039"
    1.25mm action is .049"
    ROGI likes this.
  3. jacoby75


    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    My JB-75 is getting close! Eeeeee! (Cue squeal like a little girl). Can't wait to see what all the fuss is about.

  4. HarveyRobertson

    HarveyRobertson Lowdown Showdown Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2018
    Benton Kentucky
    I got a PJ-75, best $147 I have ever spent!
    IMG_20191205_081906683.jpg received_500176137255848.jpeg
  5. The mind train

    The mind train

    Jul 15, 2018
    I'm certainly very happy with my JB 75. To my ears it compares very favourably with my MiM Fender Active Precision Deluxe (which despite the name is actually a PJ with a slim jazz neck)
    heb9_28 and jacoby75 like this.
  6. jacoby75


    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    That thing where your bass and case show up from Germany earlier than expected! But the box looks like this . . .

    B5C7F624-AE72-402C-AA77-F7838B08B48F.jpeg 82DAD169-EB95-4273-B5F5-3E474524D84E.jpeg 592E2ECF-FB13-4DC3-B016-38955041B578.jpeg 70A375AD-1F03-41F7-96B4-21646F2B922F.jpeg

    And yet, near as I can tell so far, the case is flawless (if not a little chincey and poorly padded), and the bass escapes with only a small chunk out of the headstock, which I can and will sand out.


    But other than that, she’s a real beaut! I can’t see sending it back for this ding, and the next one would probably be even worse. But I will let them know about it.

    I'll say what everyone else has already said:
    For the price, I seriously cannot believe I got this nice of a bass. I'm going to have a lot of fun playing this for a very long time.

    8ECDF934-DE6E-4BA9-B471-1F88D508EA78.jpeg B2A50EBB-6920-44B9-9D50-F945235D7F3F.jpeg AA754BA9-B4B8-4321-9CAA-53CE01DE8E91.jpeg 259B3EFD-E61C-4D4B-B677-A3138F879BDF.jpeg EBC35B21-33D8-40B8-ADD6-5E9772EE630C.jpeg

    I can’t comment a lot on the tone yet. I’ve only plugged it straight into my headphone amp (Rolls PM50) with no preamp/eq/anything. I’ll try the full setup this weekend. But preliminarily, it sounds surprisingly good. Sounds like a jazz bass should. Though I find the tone pot a bit wonky. All the way open is soooooo shrill and clangy. Maybe it's the strings. I'm not used to them. I have to turn the tone down significantly to get the sound out of it I'm looking for. Granted, again, this is just into a headphone amp, so it's not a fair judgment. The neck is straight and smooth (on the back), the body is solid, paint and finish look great. The satin neck is fantastic and easy to slide around on. I love the blocks and binding. I’ve wanted a bass with this look for a long time. And it scratches that itch on the cheap. It is a little heavy, but not as shockingly heavy as I expected it to be based on everyone’s reviews and comments. I don’t have a scale to confirm this, but just holding one bass in each arm, it feels a little heavier than my Lakland 5 jazz. But not overwhelmingly so. And the weight won’t bother me. Plays great sitting down. Maybe just a liiiitle neck dive. Some lightweight tuners might change that. But it’s not enough for me to worry about.

    That being said, it needs a little work. I didn’t bond with it right out of the box. It feels a little dead. I'm used to feeling my more expensive basses vibrate all of the way through when I pluck a note. Granted, I haven’t bought a cheap bass in a looooooong time. And I have NEVER in my 30+ years of playing bought a bass THIS cheap. But I’m not going to fully judge the tone and playability until I get my strings of choice on it and adjust the height and intonation. That being said, it did have a surprising amount of sustain, again, with no preamp or compression of any kind. I'm looking forward to seeing how it sounds with the full pedalboard setup.

    It’s not fair to compare it to my Lull, or even my Lakeland Skyline. It would never take the place of either of those. (But on a side note, those are both 5's, and I wanted a 4 on the cheap for an upcoming theater gig). But it actually holds its own with the Lakland rather well, A bass which costs 10x as much. The fit and finish . . . and most definitely the fretwork . . . are better on the Lakland. That’s my one complaint. The frets on the HB kind of slice my hand up, particularly when sliding up on the G-string side. And I have no idea how to fix that. But if I can figure that out (I know someone on here posted a link to videos a while back), probably slap a high mass bridge on there, I don’t see it needing much more that that to be a very playable bass. Especially at my now hobbyist level.
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2019
    405BassGuy, heb9_28, Joybass and 4 others like this.
  7. The mind train

    The mind train

    Jul 15, 2018
    Pity about the damage, rubbish courier. Definitely let Thomann know they may offer a discount as good will.

    Glad to read you are as pleased with yours as I am with mine. I have slight neck dive but got around it with a non slip soft leather strap.

    The frets are easily fixed. Plenty of YouTube demos out there.

    Once you plug in to a proper bass amp you may find it hisses. No problems there it will just need cavities shielding and bridge earthing improved.

    Happy playing
    jacoby75, MovinTarget and Outtaseezun like this.
  8. Congratulations. Nice looking JB75 for sure. I second the remark about shielding (and grounding) the cavities.
    As to the shrillness and clankyness: could be the strings, but it could also be that they used 500kohm pots on this bass. You'd better check that, and if necessary replace them with 250kohm pots. Oiling the fretboard a few times may alleviate the sharp fret end issue. Have fun playing this bass!
  9. HarveyRobertson

    HarveyRobertson Lowdown Showdown Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2018
    Benton Kentucky
    I received my 1st package from Thomann with a hole so big in the box that a strap, strap locks and 2 sets of strings were lost. The headstock on the SC500 was damaged with a chunk of wood missing just like yours but in the front face of the headstock.

    I asked to return the guitar and Thomann asked if they could give me a credit of $40 and I keep it. I agreed.

    Thomann also sent out the replacement of the goods that never made it.

    The SC500 was highly playable but I just couldn't live with the front face being damaged, so I sold the guitar for slightly more than I paid for it.

    The PJ-75 bass arrived in perfect condition, all I had to do was set the truss rod, lower the bridge saddles and intimate. The Roswell pups had to be risen a little and actually sound decent. The bass sustains forever and hold it's tune so good, I play daily and it never budges.. I am careful to handle the bass with care as will all my instruments. Playability is fantastic and honestly it gives my MIM Jazz 5 an honest run for it's money.

    I was also hit with $51 in customs charges.

    In the trek from Germany, these were held in Germany customs for 2 days, UK customs for 3 days, N.Y. customs for 2 days and Miami customs for 2 days, all other travel was 3-4 days... Passed through DHL (thomanns default delivery service) and then handed over to USPS once in the states.

    I've bought guitars directly from China that made it here with barely a scratch on the box and NO customs charges so I don't know why this is a problem for Thomann, this is not the first case as I am joined to a few Harley Benton and Thomann pages on FB and this is probably the #1 complaint with orders shipped to USA... Makes me wonder are they shipping all of their seconds to the US and hoping that we will just accept it due to the frustrations of shipping times involved and the hassle?
  10. subdude67


    Jan 18, 2010
    Interesting, I have noticed a similar pattern here, out of about 60 parcels I received from China over the last few years i was hit with taxes or duties 3 times, everything else went straight to my PO Box. But every parcel from the US or Europe has always attracted taxes & duties no matter what was inside.
  11. jacoby75


    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    I saw a video the other day on shielding the cavities with tinfoil. Seems easy enough. I wonder if you could use some sort of foil tape, like I've used in taping up my furnace ducts. Might be a bit easier.

    Forgive me if this is a stupid question, but I've never upgraded ANYTHING on a bass myself. Except maybe a pickguard a long time ago and replacing the occasional tuner after breaking. How would I know about the pots? Are the pots labeled with the ohms? I don't know how to solder, but before I even ordered it, based on reviews I've read/seen, I was tentatively planning on replacing the controls anyway. But I think I'll have to go with a solderless setup of some kind if I do. The pickups sound pretty decent after I raised the neck pickup. The bridge pickup was significantly higher than the neck, contributing to the clank. After raising the neck pickup, it got a bit warmer with both pickups on. But I still have to dial out the clank with the tone knob. Once I get to my actual pedalboard later, I have a Broughton LPF/HPF, so that might help with some of that as well, and I'll have a better idea of how it sounds.

    What kind of oil are the kids using these days on a "rosewood" fretboard. I say "rosewood" only because the website doesn't say WHAT kind of wood the fretboard is. But it looks rosewoody, though it's fairly light in color compared to my other rosewood basses.
  12. Leo Thunder

    Leo Thunder

    Sep 27, 2018
    Yes, they should be. Sometimes, the label will be on the side against the body of the guitar, so they have to be unscrewed to be read. I wouldn't downsize the pots, though. It's simpler to tone the EQ down. It would be a different matter if the bass sounded dull and pots had to be given a larger value for more high end. All this applies to the volume pots, by the way. No need to change the tone pot.
    jacoby75 likes this.
  13. jacoby75


    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    "Dullness" is most definitely NOT a concern. Lol.
  14. jacoby75


    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    Has anyone replaced the bridges on their jazz basses with something higher mass or more "bada$$"? If so, what have you used? And was the replacement easy? Like, was it a direct replacement? The screw holes matched?
  15. The mind train

    The mind train

    Jul 15, 2018
    Furnace duct tape may be a little heavy for such tight spaces. Most people use either copper tape or conductive paint. The slug repellent tape sold in garden centres and hardware store is cheaper than the stuff marketed for guitars and yet is exactly the same product.

    Self adhesive aluminium tape is less expensive. Some folk use kitchen foil which is electrically ok but a bugger to glue in place.

    No need to solder, plenty of solderless looms on eBay which come with fitting instructions. Most sellers allow selection of values and makes of components.

    The earth lead to the bridge just needs to adjusted to make sure it makes good contact with the metal. Usually just a loose lead jammed between wood and metal.

    Word of caution. Do use a Philips screwdriver rather than a posidrive. Reduces risk of damaging screw heads. Please do not use a power screwdriver.

    It won't be rosewood. Trade in that timber was banned under CITES a few years back. Check if it's been varnished. If so there's no point applying oil.
    MovinTarget and jacoby75 like this.
  16. izpak


    Feb 17, 2016
    Essex, UK
    I'm surprised that it was only in the UK customs for 3 days. I've had a bass from South Carolina that ended up sitting in UK customs for 28 days before it was released for me to pay fees.
    HarveyRobertson likes this.
  17. jacoby75


    Mar 11, 2010
    Coldwater, MI
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Guitars, DR Strings
    When I ordered some pedals from DSM Noisemaker in Brazil, it was in customs for what seemed an eternity. Probably took about 2 1/2 weeks total to get to me door-to-door. My bass from Thomann took a total of 8 days to get to me. I think it was in customs for 2-3 days, but I'm not sure because the tracking updates posted during that time were confusing. And according to tracking, I never got an "out for delivery" notification and my bass is still on the way, even though it was delivered yesterday. Maybe they're sending me a bonus bass for being such a valued, first-time customer, lol.

  18. I have the dullness problem with my JB-75MN... what am i supposed to do? I tried raising the neck PU but it didn't change anything. I dont know anything about these Ohm debate... i have a Vintage fretless jazz bass with the Wilkinson PUs and they sound much louder...
  19. Due to the CITES ban on rosewood, which BTW has been lifted for musical instruments on nov. 26 this year, many affordable instruments have fretboards made of thermally treated maple or pine. To my knowledge these are never varnished, so it can't hurt to oil them. I use a plain furniture oil without silicones. Works fine.

    'The mind train' gave good info on the other questions.
  20. Check out Obsidian Wire, for one.
    Lownote38 and jacoby75 like this.

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