Harley Benton Fanfret-8NT QEB 2018 DLX

8-String Electric Guitar

  • Arched basswood body
  • Quilted maple veneer top
  • Continuous 5-strip maple / nato neck
  • Fretboard: Roseacer (thermally treated maple wood)
  • Modern C-neck profile
  • Fretboard inlays: offset dots
  • 24 Fan / fanned medium jumbo frets
  • Black graphite nut
  • Nut width: 54 mm
  • Scale: 648 - 686 mm
  • Fretboard radius: 410 mm
  • Pickups: 2 HBZ Custom Wound Elektrisola-B humbuckers
  • 1 x Volume and 1 x tone control
  • 3-Way switch
  • Rising Mono Rail Jetty
  • Black hardware
  • Matching headstock
  • WSC Diecast Locking machine heads
  • Strings ex factory: D'Addario EXL140-8 .010 - .074 (Art.270002)
  • Colour: Quilted Emerald Burst

Further information

Colour Black
Body linden
Top -
Neck Mahogny
fret board Roseacer
Frets 24
scale lenght 648 mm
Pickup HH
Tremolo No
Incl. Case No
Incl. Gigbag No

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7 customer ratings:
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4.4 / 5.0
  • features
  • sound
  • quality
7 written ratings Read all reviews
Total
features
sound
quality

Excellent Value for the Money

Jamie C, 15.12.2017
In simple terms the Harley Benton Far Fret 8 is great value for money, but that's not to say this guitar isn?t without its issues. First off the guitar feels and plays extremely well. The finish is matte but with a very slight gloss to it. It feels smooth and well done. Having spent time really inspecting the guitar, there is very little to complain about. two niggling points with these guitars that Thomann should really look to address in the future, the nut is very cheap plastic, and the slot in which it sits isn?t the greatest cut. Moreover, the fretwork on this could do with a little extra time put in to it. Rough fret edges can really change the playability on a guitar, and while the fret edges on this aren?t sharp, they also aren?t properly rounded off. Then again, this isn?t anything that can't be fixed in a hour with a fret file, so don't let that put you off.

A huge plus side to this instrument is that it now seems to come with upgraded bridge saddles, which are much nicer than the ones shown in this listing. They feel string and actually look nice. Big thumbs up to the bridge saddles. Another fantastic feature is the inclusion of locking tuners. They make the instrument a breeze to restring and also give the guitar that extra bit of a premium feel. Thomann - Keep your imaginary up to date! I understand differences in wood grain and top figuring, but what you see should be exactly what you get.

The neck feels similar to my RG8, but not quite as thin as my Jackson 8. It's a good compromise between the two. It feels stable, and the matte finish on the back of the neck makes for fairly frictionless movement up and down the neck. The fret wire used on this looks to be fairly small, although, jumbo frets really are a personal preference and not something that a guitar should be judged on as an aspect of quality.

The pickups on this were a big shock for me - they sound clear, but not shrill, and they are a huge improvement over the pickups that were present in the 2017 model. The 2017 model almost certainly had the same 5 string Cort pickups that you can find in the Ibanez RG8, but with custom HB etching, whereas this has perfectly normal passive sized pickups in a normal pickup route, which will make for easy replacement, should someone want to swap them out. The volume and tone pot feel rugged and I see no reason that they would need to be replaced. The only thing letting down the electronics on this guitar is the pickup selector. Three way switches are almost always inferior to five way selectors as they just give you less tonal options, and the three-way selector on this particular model is quite cheap and does have some slight wobble to the actual switch. This is a very small point, but one worth being aware of.

Having played 8 strings for about 7 years now, I find scale length has always been an issue. At 27 inches (like Ibanez's 8 string models), tension is almost adequate on the low end, the but additional tensions gives the higher strings a twangy quality that makes then sound quite shrill. At 26.5 inches (like Jackson's 8 string models), the issue with twangy high strings is alleviated, but the tension just isn?t quite adequate on the low end, especially if you tune the low F down to E. I've found the fan frets to be an excellent compromise between low end tuning stability and a balanced sound across the fret board. Just beware that there is an adjustment period in getting used to playing on fan frets. Not so much a muscle memory adjustment, but the visual aspect of it can sometimes leaving you feeling as though you?re an extra fret along. However, after a couple of hours it pretty much becomes as natural as straight frets

Pro's

- Excellent playability
- Attractive finish and body shape
- Fan frets on a budget
- Nice bridge saddles
- Locking tuners
- Pickups sound great
- Pickups come is a bog standard passive mount

Con's

- Blemishes in the finish
- Nut slot not perfectly cut
- Slightly rough fret edges. Not sharp, but also not quite finished
- Very dry fretboard material (easily fixed with some linseed oil)
- cheap 3 way selector

Do buy if

- You're on a budget of less than £600
- You don't mind putting a few hours in to setting up and refining the guitar
- You've had an interest in trying fan frets

Don't buy if

- You're expecting top end quality. This is definitely a budget instrument, and while it's incredible value for the money, it is what it is.
- You're the sort of person who needs the finish to be perfect. The guitar looks great, but there are spots on it where the finish isnt the best and that is definitely something that could annoy some people.
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Total
features
sound
quality

Far beyond my expectations

Ernstie, 09.03.2018
This is the cheapest fanned fret 8 string you can find. Of course it's hard to even guess what to expect. I must tell you there is not much to fear. If you are aware of the price, and you adjust your expectations to that, this axe will blow your mind.

Most of us buy a guitar like this to go into some progressive or djenty stuff and Harley Benton is well aware of this fact. The sound is designed to serve the purpose of prog metal. The pickups, however cheap they are, do a more-than-good-enough job. The low and low-mid is just fantastic. Maybe there is not enough high end for my taste, but nothing that could not be fixed with some EQ. I'll be proudly recording with this guitar without changing the pickups.

About the look. This thing looks much more amazing when you hold it in your hand. The pictures cannot give you the experience. Would I go on stage with it? Hell yeah, without the sign of any hesitation. There are minor imperfections on the finish, but I won't pretend that I'm rating an over ¤1000 guitar. Nothing too bad.

The build quality is just absolutely great. You would not expect this much for a price as low as this. The locking tuners work really well. The neck through design and the double truss rod construction is more than you could expect at this price point and both of these are perfectly executed. In fact I chose the 8 string model over the 7 string because of the neck through construction and I couldn't be more happy. It's worth the ¤100 extra. Of course an extra string can never hurt. The fret work on mine is perfect. There is a rough spot on the neck, but not as bad that it would ruin the experience. The nut is a bit damaged, there is a bit that is cut off, but still not an unacceptable error at this price point. The volume and tone knobs do the trick, as well as the switch.

The strings coming by default sound just great. Depending on how low you want to tune it, you might need to change the low F# to a thicker one. For the double drop F tuning I use it for it just works.

Speaking of which, the quality and speed of the customer support and shipping is also amazing. I wrote a note when ordering, asking them to set up the guitar to play well in the tuning F - A# - F - A# - D# - G - C - F. (It might seem like a strange one with the non-sharped G, but F minor and Bb minor are both easy to play this way.) They assigned a specialist to it the very same day (despite warning me that it might take longer to ship when asking for a special setup), and they shipped it the next day. The day of order was Thursday, I got it the next Monday in Hungary with a setup to my taste, objectively well playable.

To summarize:

Pros:
- Looks amazing. Absolutely stage-ready.
- Plays amazing. Great out-of-the-box experience with great setup.
- Sounds amazing. It can dj0nt down the heavens.
- Feels amazing. Man, I don't want another guitar for many years to come.
- Awesome customer service. Kudos to you Thomann guys!

Cons:
- Minor aesthetical imperfections. If you are a perfectionist and cannot tolerate any, you should consider a more expensive model.
- High end is a bit dull. I was able to EQ it on my Boss multi as well as in software, so it shouldn't hurt that much. But again, it's not a Strandberg.

TL;DR would buy it again any day.
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