Holloway Harp Guitars
The world's first production harp guitars
A true Dyer copy at an entry-level price!
A professional, yet
inexpensive, modern copy of the harp
played by Andy McKee, Michael Hedges and Stephen Bennett
2012 Production Holloway Model 5 Harp Guitars
$1495 with gig bag
|Built in China, in
a long-established guitar-making factory for several major brands
these Dyer "copies and beyond" promise to finally allow pretty
much everyone who has ever dreamed it to enter the harp guitar
world! There are already several professionals playing these, and now you can join them!
For the price, these are an incredible
These latest production instruments look
essentially identical to the prototype Model 5, but with solid wood
back, better bracing and better tuners.* Best of all, they sound
even better than the best prototypes, which quickly sold out at prices
up to $1450.
They come with standard limited lifetime
warranty, and at only $1495, easily beat anything within a thousand
dollars of this price range (and in truth, they sound closer to a $5000
In addition to Stephen Bennett, Don Alder and other
top endorsers, Muriel Anderson now plays them in her shows around the
Customers may still wish to swap out the tuners.
I’m happy to advise you.
The Holloway logo
The current production Model 5's have an off-white silk-screened Holloway logo.
Details and F.A.Q.s
are 5 Holloways currently in stock. All are extremely consistent, and
play and sound virtually identically.
Tone is balanced, crisp and bright (not overly so) and very
“acoustic”, with great punch and clarity in the sub-basses. Tonal
change from low E to first sub-bass D is very consistent.
are very minor differences in the appearance of the wide-grain spruce
tops and mahogany backs and sides.
The top and back are solid, the sides appear to be laminate. Overall
fit and finish is quite nice.
are spruce and have been lightened and re-shaped a bit.
Body is nice and deep (just shy of 4-3/8").
Body is nice and deep (just shy of 4-3/8").
plans have been tweaked to better center the neck and bridge on the body
(compared to the more offset original Dyers), and yet keep a more
workable space between the 2 headstocks.
Where Dyers often overlap or touch, these rarely overlap and some
have more space between than others. I point this out only for those who
may want to explore alternate neck tuners down the road (see FAQ
for more details).
width has been increased to 1-7/8”, like the original Dyers.
String spacing is even, with outer string centers at 1-17/32”,
and well-spaced from edges of neck.
Truss rods have not been adjusted (best to do as necessary in
one’s own climate).
Action is fine, bridge is compensated and intonation is good.
I believe nut, saddle, and nut posts are all bone. The saddle for
the subs is wire, as in traditional Dyers (see FAQ for more).
posts are a bit high and of somewhat uneven height on (see FAQ
for more). Sub-bass strings are wound CCW (I’ve seen this done
in either direction, but normally this is CW). You can string and
wind them CW, they just will have a slight change in direction at the
post. The sub-bass strings installed on
this particular shipment are generic temp strings (some unknown error)
and are not really suitable for most tuning options.
Regardless, I always recommend checking out my
own string options.
I have re-strung one of these Holloways for Standard Tuning and
one for Bennett Tuning (to verify that they’d handle it). Please
choose your tuning preference and I’ll include a free set for you (see
FAQ for more details). I recommend that you have your own
guitar tech fine tune the nut posts and bridge holes/pins for the
particular strings you settle on (as needed).
The lowest bass tuner is already drilled out to accept an
.080”(the first few inches, up to the start of the outer wrap).
I did not re-do the bridge pin or hole for this .080 (or other
strings), but simply inserted them deeper to fit.
have been upgraded to a generic Japanese brand, and are adequate (see FAQ
Holloway gig bag is included with each harp guitar.
These bags (also sold separately) are
about half the price of my HGM gig bags by Colorado, and similarly about
half the quality and weight, but are fine for basic protection
and taking around town.
hard case requires a
$100 upgrade (or $150 “in addition to the bag” charge).
They are about the same as the earlier Holloway cases received. PLEASE NOTE that they are not
flight cases. Expect
a “new vinyl” smell until they get aired out.
gig bag or hard case, I include a free humidifier, which I would highly
recommend you always use if you are in a drier climate.
There has been a lot of Internet (and private) discussion on various features of the past and present Holloways, which runs the gamut from “Thanks for this fantastic instrument!” all the way to nagging complaints from high-end 6-string owners who seem to expect this inexpensive Chinese import to equal their $10,000 boutique guitars without costing any more. I discuss many of these issues (and options) on this special Holloway F.A.Q. page.
line: Holloway harp guitars are in the hands of everyone from
"beginners" to "professionals." If you’re realistic in your expectations and have your
specific questions addressed before purchase and entering into my
48-hour approval period, I guarantee you will love these instruments.
And I’m always here to help guide you through any and all
aspects of your experience (Testimonials
Gregg Miner, the “harp guitar pope”
Previous "Prototype" Stock (sold out):
Based on the Dyer Style 5, but with additional back binding
4, "Stephen Bennett"
Based on Stephen Bennett's Dyer Style 4, with colored finish. No binding, and 12th fret markers absent as in the original
Based on the Dyer Style 5, but with additional back binding, and top, back & sides stained the same dark color
DVDs by Stephen Bennett, John Doan, Muriel Anderson, Andy McKee,
Stacy Hobbs, Tom Shinness, Dan LaVoie, James Kline, Larry
Berwald, Bill Dutcher, Gregg Miner, Pasquale Taraffo
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2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
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