Harley Benton EX-84 Modern: New retro finishes for these ’80s metal machines
Loaded with either EMG or Roswell active pickups
Harley Benton has added new finishes to its EX-84 Modern model, including both EMG- and Roswell-loaded variants of its 80s-inspired metal machine. The new colours are Benton Blue and Shell Pink, adding to the Black and Vintage White finishes already on offer.
Harley Benton Tribute Series EX-84 Modern
Part of its Tribute Series, Harley Benton’s EX-84 Modern harks back to the 1980s and the burgeoning metal scene, whose players who often used Explorer-shaped guitars to rock out on. Originally launched in 2020 with a lower-priced version loaded with Roswell pickups, the EX-84 Modern made another appearance later in the year, this time equipped with EMG actives and a higher price tag. Left-handed versions followed, too.
The new finishes follow the same blueprint and specs. The EX-84 Modern and EX-84 Modern EMG both have a mahogany body, a thin-taper mahogany neck and an ebony fretboard. So far, so perfect for crushing riffs.
As these instruments are very much orientated towards rock and metal orientated, the inclusion of extra-jumbo frets was a given. Also onboard is a Graph Tech Tusq XL nut paired with a set of Grover locking tuners. I’d imagine that tuning should be pretty stable on these models, as the bridge is a WSC Tune-o-Matic with a stop tail, so not many moving parts to let you down. And, of course, all the hardware on these guitars is blacked out.
EMG or Roswell Active Pickups
Each finish is available in two versions. One option uses a set of EMG 81 active (bridge) and EMG 60 active (neck). If you want to save some money, the lower-priced editions have a Roswell LZ51 active in the bridge position and Roswell LZ56 active in the neck position. Both sets are controlled via a three-way toggle switch, paired with a master volume and master tone control for a nice simple setup.
If you are in the market for a stripped-back guitar with active humbucking pickups, especially one with an ’80s metal style, then these should be on your radar – especially if you are on a budget but want something you can actually gig with and won’t let you down. The EX-84 modern should be able to get that classic NWOBHM or early Bay-Side Thrash tone and those memorable riffs and leads.
More on Harley Benton and the EX-84 Modern
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- Harley Benton Tribute Series EX-84 Modern Benton Blue: Harley Benton
- Harley Benton Tribute Series EX-84 Modern EMG or Roswell loaded metal machines: Harley Benton