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The banjo reviews database is here to help educate people before they purchase an instrument. Of course, this is not meant to be a substitute for playing the instrument yourself!

6918 reviews in the archive.

Phil Davidson  Bach Riter copy Banjo Reviews

Submitted by charlieahill (see all reviews from this person) on 1/5/2007

Where Purchased: Second hand off banjo teacher

Year Purchased: 2006
Price Paid: 1000 (£) (bought USED) historic exchange rates / currency converter


I play mainly clawhammer and for this the banjo is absolutely brilliant. It has a lovely sound although can be rather on the loud side at times. However, I have noticed a great loss of sound quality when I replaced the bridge with a Shadow SH930 pickup. Yet, when amplified, the pickup and a Marshall AS50R more than make up for this loss of tone

Sound Rating: 7


This banjo was exceptionally well set-up when I bought it, and apart from amplifying it I have not changed its set-up at all. I can't see that I would have it setup differently or changed anywhere.

Setup Rating: 8


This is a brilliant banjo to look at. There are pictures of it on my home page. I bought it about 5 years old, and even then it was in a condition that was literally as good as new, new scratching, and all of the metalwork was as shiny as the day it had been bought.

Appearance Rating: 10


The banjo seems as if it will last for ever and a day, however, one or two of the inlays in the neck can be felt that they are not quite smooth and may be starting to peel off ever so slightly, yet I do not see that this will be a problem

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

Being a one-off banjo, there was no warranty, but as far as I am aware, it has never needed any repairs at all. I have e-mailed the manufacturer a few times with general questions and he seems helpful.

Customer Service: 9


The whole of the banjo seems to be a stand-out component. It is beautifully made with some of the very highest quality components. As I said above, the only slightly weak component now is the bridge.

Components Rating: 8

Overall Comments

I would definitely recommend this banjo, but I think it mght take some persuading to get Phil Davidson to make another. For the price I paid it is absolutely brilliant, but then again I got it exceptionally cheap. When buying this banjo I looked at several other banjos that are around the same mark and found this one to be the best by a long long way

Overall Rating: 9

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