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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Harley Benton S-580 WR review - Part 2: after the adjustments

17.5.2014 Important update! 
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I've been having some problems with the low neck angle (=high action) of this guitar and while the neck adjustments made the playability better they didn't completely solve the problem. So here's what I did: Harley Benton S-580 WR Mod - Part 1: Fixing the low neck angle
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The Gibson SG was originally advertised as having the ”fastest neck in the world”, but that certainly wasn’t the case with my brand new Harley Benton S-580. The low neck angle (check out part 1 of my review for more info!) caused some problems and the string action was pretty high even when the bridge was set to the lowest possible setting. The neck also had too much relief on it and that obviously made the guitar even harder to play.

About a month ago I finally bought a hex key and adjusted the truss rod and… lo and behold, it made a difference! The action is still too high for my taste. But since I’m planning to use this guitar with alternate tunings and maybe even for slide playing, the slightly higher action might be ok.



I haven't played an SG-style guitar before and the thin body of the S-580 was a total surprise. The guitar is very light and comfortable to play. It's a bit neck heavy, but overall the guitar is well balanced. I feel that because of the thin body, there’s a slight ”slab-of-wood-with-strings”-vibe present.. :) But the guitar feels good and the C-shape neck is pretty much perfect for me! This guitar might not be as good as my Epiphone LP Traditional Pro (360€), but for this price the Harley Benton S-580 is a pretty good deal.

Soundwise I can’t really say much about the guitar since I’ve only tried it on my mobile setup (soundcard-iPad-Jamup app). With a .011-.049 string set the acoustic sound is loud and the body resonates well. The pickups are general low-quality/low-price humbuckers and with my mobile setup they sound dark and slightly muffled. I’m going to do a full sound review with audio samples when I get back to Finland in September. Stay tuned!

Update: Check out Part 3 of the review.

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