It’s sometimes not necessary to pay a lot bunch of money to get a good guitar. Here’s the proof with this electric 12 strings guitar that I bought in 2014 for the modest sum of… 220 e. As I wanted to play electric guitar again in the band, I began to think about buying a 12 strings electric guitar, in order to counter balance with my Gretch G5420T then to enjoy the natural harmonic richness of double strings, but in an electric context.
However, a friend of mine gently loaned to me a superb 12 string electric guitar just for a show, nothing less than the famous Rickenbacker 620/12 FG, that I used with great pleasure in the tune En Castille. I surely couldn’t afford to buy a Rickenbaker at the time (its price approaching… 2000 e), so I simply looked for the cheapest 12 string electric guitar ever on the marked place, and founded this nice Harley Benton. Quite honestly, it’s hard to get a better value for money than this model !
The sound is very good, both in clair, crunch and large satured sounds.
Moreover the neck is very comfortable, the instrument very light and pleasant to play. As an added bonus, this guitar, with a touch of malice, looks very much like the famous Rickenbacker 620/12 FG (to the point that you could mistake it !). So, was it all OK ? Not really, because I must admit that at first, this guitar was simply impossible to play : out of tune when trying to get to the octave, strings attached to high from the fingerboard, bad pull of the strings… but don’t panic ! A correct setting by a guitar builder just cleaned up the whole thing. At the same time, I considered that it would be fun to increase the tonal range of the guitar, so I decided to place a capo on the fourth fret, with gives it a special sounding colour and makes it a good substitute for my mandolin. Now I play this guitar a lot in rehearsals and it seems to work. Besides, this guitar had some nice parts in the Pavanes album and sounds very complementary to my Gretch I think.
To conclude : if you want to play a nice 12 strings electric guitar for only 220 e, get this Harley Benton… but don’t forget to bring it first to a guitar builder for complete setting !