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NBM: Harley Benton Enhanced MP-5EB

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by And I, May 2, 2019.


  1. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    No problem
     
  2. bottomzone

    bottomzone

    Oct 21, 2005
    The bass in Alberto Rigoni's YouTube review sounds incredible! Looking at the features for the price, it seems like a bargain!

     
    Last edited: May 29, 2019
  3. Not a 5 string guy, not that I don't like em, but that's a cool looking bass. If it plays half as well as it looks you've made a killer choice.
     
    And I likes this.
  4. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    FINALLY taking this thing to jam with people today. My current band has been in low-power mode, the guitarist just had his 4th kid and our June gig is cancelled. Jamming with a new craigslist hookup in a few minutes. Been practicing a lot the last few days, The HB really sounds good and is comfortable to play. High hopes for a new project and a new bass!
     
  5. Bass Man Dan

    Bass Man Dan Endorsing Artist: Ned Flanders' Bass-a-Reeno Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2017
    Cincinnati
    Good luck! Let us know how it goes!
     
  6. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    Great jam, and quiet enough that I didn't have to wear earplugs which was nice. The guitarist and I went to the same college during the same years. We recognized each other's college bands!

    The bass was teriffic. It was going through an MXR comp into a markbass combo (12 or 15, not sure what model, i didn't look closely) with all the knobs right up the middle. I had it in active mode with pickup and eq knobs in the center position. Even with d'addario XLs that haven't been played on a ton (bright-ish strings) it sounded warm and full at a moderate volume. Maybe even a little dark, but not inarticulate. The B string has a nice solid ring to it, I used it mostly between the 5th and 8th frets) and liked it. I did try lower than E a few times and it was still tight and solid. The playability / feel is just phenomenal. I know it's subjective, but for me this is close to the perfect neck.

    I'm very happy right now. When I get the Brute back from the shop, I'm pretty sure I will have 2 main basses rather than the Brute and this as a backup.
     
  7. morrisonhendrix

    morrisonhendrix When the music's over, turn out the lights... Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2009
    near Dallas, Texas
    I wonder how it would compare to a Sire P7. I've got neither, but looking at both. Obviously this is a cheaper option.
     
  8. Bass Man Dan

    Bass Man Dan Endorsing Artist: Ned Flanders' Bass-a-Reeno Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2017
    Cincinnati
    I have two P7 5 strings. My only complaint is they are not light. They are not crazy heavy, though. But the tone is really versatile and very good. I can get a growl out of them when I dig in that is only rivaled by my Warwicks.
     
    morrisonhendrix likes this.
  9. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    I "found" the P-bass tone on this guy. Active, the P pickup soloed is kinda meh. Passive, it's a nice thumpy round old school P bass... Passive, both pickups together is also more on the meh side, but active with both pups sounds great. I will probably upgrade the preamp at some point, but for now, I've got it more or less dialed in and can't wait to play it more!!
     
    The Rage likes this.
  10. morrisonhendrix

    morrisonhendrix When the music's over, turn out the lights... Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2009
    near Dallas, Texas
    What do you think you'll upgrade the preamp to?
     
  11. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    not sure, i don't have tons of experience. my only other active bass is the brute, and that has bartolini pickups and a bartolini preamp. i want to try something different, something 3-band, but not sure what.
     
  12. Kenneth92

    Kenneth92 Commercial User

    Aug 13, 2018
    I got one a couple of months ago and it feels awesome, It's on the heavy side though... you might be able to shave a couple pounds by switching to some lighter tuners and bridge perhaps, I don't know if it's just the one I got but man, the preamp is way way too hot and it clips absolutely every console I've played it through even at half way is really unusable, definitely think about upgrading preamp, now the pick up configuration was something I was really looking forward to but it was just meh, the P pickup sounds best in passive mode and that's pretty much my favorite tone which is great if you want a 5 string p bass. the MM pickup is way way way too over powering though when you have the 50/50 blend it just sounds like a music man which is cool if you want that but I wanted half and half, the J version has a coil tap for the bridge pickup that they didn't include for this ( I have no idea why would they do that) which can be solved with a simple soldering adjustment that you can make in which I did and it made it a little more balanced. you can also find the schematics for the pickups in the Roswell website. All in all besides all the gripes that I have with the bass and the amount of extra work I'm gonna put in it, it's still an amazing bass and out of the recordings I've heard I can tell that the maple neck version has a little better sound that compliments the combination better. But truth be told I can tell you that if I had all of the money in the world to create a bass it wouldn't be far from this minus the exception that I would get a birdseye maple neck, but in design is pretty freaking close as in the color, string through body, matching headstock, active/passive, simple 2 band preamp, same pickup configuration (with coiltap of course), block inlays, and ZERO FRET!. my dream bass cost about 3k I'm getting something really close to it for about $700 after I put the new pickups which would be Delano and preamp not sure yet which one I'll get, but I might end up also going with Delano which is cool 'cause it is what some sandbergs use. Its a very welcoming addition while I still save up for my custom bass. cheers!
     
    kodiakblair, The Rage and And I like this.
  13. The Rage

    The Rage

    Nov 12, 2013
    The preamp in mine is not too hot at all... In other HB basses there's a trimpot for adjusting gain. Maybe there's one under the pickguard.
    I may add that I like mine mostly in active mode with blend 50/50 or 0/100 (n/b) but I understand it can't be for everybody. ^^ If I want a bit more round tone, changing balance a little toward the neck goes a long way.
     
  14. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    It's definitely way hotter active than passive. And you will need an input pad to keep it from distorting most amps. I run mine through a compressor and turn the input gain way down. The difference is large enough that I can't use it active and passive without altering compressor settings.
     
  15. The Rage

    The Rage

    Nov 12, 2013
    Sorry, I didn't realize the talking was about active volume vs passive ^^ Yes, there's a difference indeed
     
  16. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    I need to get up the gumption to take the pickguard off and see if there is a trim pot...
     
  17. Kenneth92

    Kenneth92 Commercial User

    Aug 13, 2018
    there isn't. I at least didn't see one when I rewire the bridge pickup nor it's indicted in the schematic. for either preamp or pickups.
     
    The Rage likes this.
  18. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    Yup, there is no trim pot. The cavity under the pickguard is roomy enough for a replacement pre-amp not to be problematic. So to that end...

    I just placed an order for a Nordstrand 3b-4a, some knobs, and 5 hipshot ultralite tuners! The cost of these upgrades equals the cost of the bass plus shipping to the US from Germany... Worth it? Personally I think so but that's only because I have the money to burn... This bass already feels worth more than I paid for it. Correcting the neck dive and putting in a massively improved preamp puts this bass in a category far beyond the price paid.
     
  19. morrisonhendrix

    morrisonhendrix When the music's over, turn out the lights... Supporting Member

    Aug 14, 2009
    near Dallas, Texas

    Please let us know how this sounds once you get it installed. I'm waiting on this same bass to arrive. It left Chicago this morning, so hopefully I get it by the end of the week.
     
    Jeff O'Connor, The Rage and And I like this.
  20. And I

    And I Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2009
    Witchtown, MA
    Will do. I will make some before and after recordings, because why not.

    What I expect is it will sound the same with the preamp in a "neutral" position, but I will be able to adjust the preamp trim so passive and active volume is in the same neighborhood. And I expect the EQ adjustments to be way more useful--especially having control over 400hz or 1kHz!!
     
    The Rage and morrisonhendrix like this.

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