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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!

6919 reviews in the archive.

Recording King  RK-R35 Madison Banjo Reviews

Submitted by banjoboyone (see all reviews from this person) on 12/3/2015

Where Purchased: Soundhouse (Japan)

Year Purchased: 2015
Price Paid: 75,384 (yen) historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

Good tone and sound for an import.

Sound Rating: 8

Setup

Was not set up at all and is in need of an entire tear-down, re-assembly and some component replacement - especially the tuners which are junk. Stock bridge is too high. Fret buzz when a standard height 11/16 bridge is installed. Forget about 5/8.

Setup Rating: 1

Appearance

Looks good on first glance but a once over reveals some fit & finish issues such as a dent in the fretboard; some chunks of wood inserted and sanded down in sections of the resonator and neckwood before finishing; a gap of at least 2mm all the way around between resonator and flange; and finally hardware was unpolished and looked like it had been handled extensivley by bare hands.

Appearance Rating: 3

Reliability

With care and proper maintenance, this instrument looks like it will probably last a long while, if not a lifetime.

Reliability Rating: 6

Customer Service

Haven't dealt with Recording King directly, but I have purchased from the dealer, Soundhouse several times before and they are first rate. They offer a 1 year warranty. Recording King guarantees the instrument for life. Hopefully, I won't have to find out what getting them to own up to it is like.

Customer Service: 8

Components

As mentioned above the tuning machines suck - all of them. They either need to be taken apart and lubed/overhauled or replaced. Trying to tune with them is almost like trying to tune entirely with friction tuners.
Although the stock bridge doesn't sound bad, it is not a standard height and lifts the action way too high. Instrument needs to be set up to take a lower bridge.
Resonator is a bad fit, as well.

Components Rating: 3

Overall Comments

After reading other reviews and even trying one of these out on Gryphon Instruments showroom floor, I decided to buy, but was sorely disappointed with the instrument I got. 

Overall Rating: 4

Submitted by RedStar (see all reviews from this person) on 11/7/2014

Where Purchased: Private Seller

Year Purchased: 2012
Price Paid: :-P ($US) (bought USED)

Sound

This entire review is based on a 2-year ownership

Banjo is very responsive and has a great maple crack to it.

Sound Rating: 8

Setup

Setup was good when purchased, no issues.

Setup Rating: 8

Appearance

Great, great looking banjo. I like the satin finish (which after 2 years - my hands have polished the neck glossy!)
Simple, but elegant inlay work.

Appearance Rating: 8

Reliability

Has been my go-to banjo for a long time. I have no hesitation to play it anywhere/anytime

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

I've not needed any CS interaction, but reading here on the BHO about issues that arise, and then involvement of Greg Rich - I imagine nothing but great things

Customer Service: not rated

Components

The stock bridge is pretty good, but I did replace it with a few different ones, settling a while back with a Sullivan Roasted Maple bridge.

The tuners are Gotoh, the Presto-style tailpiece is also very good quality.

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

I've been somewhat of a cheerleader for the RK35. Its a tremendous value at its price point (new ~900, used ~700). The tone and playability of this banjo is simply fantastic.

Its really money well spent. The banjo's tone continues to improve, the more I play it. I am completely satisfied with the banjo.

I always offer other pickers an opportunity to play it, and it gets good comments.

 

 

 

Overall Rating: 8

Submitted by tmthstevens (see all reviews from this person) on 10/23/2014

Where Purchased: Ebay

Year Purchased: 2014
Price Paid: 750 ($US) (bought USED)

Sound

I love the sound of this banjo! This thing sounds just like a higher end banjo. It's loud though, which I guess all banjos are.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

It was not setup at all. I bought it off ebay so it wouldn't really make a difference. Action was horrendously low but a few adjustments with the truss rod fixed that.

Setup Rating: 3

Appearance

It does have a few scratches on it, but it was used so that has nothing to do with Recording King. It is a very nice looking instrument. The wood finish is amazing! It's a satin finish, which in a way makes it easier to play. I had another banjo that was glossy, thus it was harder to play.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

It seems very reliable. I don't intend on ever buying another banjo.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

I bought it off ebay, so not much costomer service. However I don't think I would have needed costomer service; this banjo is just way too good.

Customer Service: not rated

Components

The bridge isn't the best i've ever seen, nor the worst. As with most banjos, the stock bridge isn't the best. I've replaced it with an Arthur Hatfield compensated bridge and couldn't possibly dream of a better sounding banjo. Other than that it seems great.

Components Rating: 7

Overall Comments

Overall if you don't want to spend over 1k for a good banjo, this is the way to go!  You can find them for as low as $600(in the classifieds) if you wait.  I've since found better deals than the $750 I paid.  To get a banjo that compares with this thing you would need to spend over $1000!  If you're having second thoughts......don't.  You should get this.  It's the best.  

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by damir (see all reviews from this person) on 11/27/2013

Where Purchased: cleveland pawn

Year Purchased: 2013
Price Paid: 675 ($US)

Sound

real bluegrass banjo, loud and has a punch and clearity ...awesome

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

banjo was brand new out of the box, set up and ready to play, strings little too high, but that will be fixed in a few minutes

Setup Rating: 9

Appearance

beautiful banjo all the way, beautiful satin finish, nice tuners, simple and beautiful inlay, NO cheap super glossy finish, with snow white plastic binding or ugly cheap looking heal carvings ....uhhh I hate those ...

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

hardware looks good, I don't think it will wear off any sooner than any other Gibson or Stelling, I don't see a need for a backup

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

bought from a dealer on eBay, but it comes with a lifetime warranty...

Customer Service: not rated

Components

banjo looks great and plays awesome right out of the box, you can always upgrade any banjo I guess, but is it neccessery to upgrade anything on RK35..? the answer is no...

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

I hate Asian instruments with a passion, they all come with an ugly glossy finish, super big, light and with no tone, RK35 is not your average Asian import at all, it has a look, feel and tone of a serious professional US made banjo, minus a $3000 price tag attached to it.I had some new Stellings and Gibsons that didn't sound as good as this RK35,  I like this banjo a lot, I don't really see myself buying another banjo any time soon. And on top of that it came in the nice new Guardian case... if you are looking for a good solid banjo, without paying arm and a leg for it, this is it... 

 

update 11.30.

I have been playing this banjo for the last few days, I adjusted the set up to my liking, lower the strings etc. I have been playing banjo since 1984 and owned or played many different banjos, and the one thing seems to be true when it comes to the banjo, you get what you paid for...well, that was until I got this RK35R ...I'm still confused by this banjo... I always thought that for the banjo that would look, feel and sound the way I want, I would have to pay at least $3000-$4000 ... however... this banjo is everything I always wanted in the banjo, it's perfect, finish, feel, weigh,neck, tone, everything...it is confusing also, because it was made in China???? how in the world??? it is set up on the stand in my living room, and it simply, does not look like Made In China instrument...no cheap gloss finish with snow white fake plastic ugly binding or little golden sticker with "made in Korea" on it ....you get this banjo and you will see what Im talking about....I'm very confused with this banjo, I'm thinking someone is trying to mess with me or something... this..for $675 ???? impossible ... no way ... but still, it is here...do yourself a favor, and before you fork out thousands of your hard earned dollars on the banjo with the big name, try a little RK35R, you may be very surprised ....

 

I just uploaded few pix, when i was doing a research on this banjo, I had a hard time finding a good pix to see what it looked like, I was very skeptical can you tell LOL, so maybe these few pix will make it easier for you to get a better idea what this instrument looks like, and I guarantee you, it sounds just as good as it looks... check out my photo album 

 

one more thing, I heard about Recording King banjos years ago but never even consider buying or even trying it, because I knew it was made in China, however, few days ago friend of mine  came over with his Martin D-18GE and told me about RK Elite75, he was amazed with that banjo, since I don't care about fancy stuff, and RK35R has same components as Elite 75 minus the fancy stuff, I decided to look in to it little bit, did little research and couldn't find nothing but praises for these banjos (all of them, not just RK35R) after thinking for a while, and trying to get over my price=quality dilema, checking out you tube videos and shopping for the best deal, I finally decided to get new one of the eBay, my offer of $675 was accepted and I was an owner of an awful Chinese crap (thats what I thought) ... as soon as I received the banjo, and took it out of the case, my jaw was on my living room carpet ... so thats how I end up with a Asian import banjo in Nashville...LOL ...trust me, if this banjo was not as good as it is, I would not, I repeat, NOT be writing you this, and i guarantee you one thing, you don't hate Asian imported banjos more than I do....but trust me, these banjos deserve a chance ...for real ...

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by buddyoneski (see all reviews from this person) on 6/9/2013

Where Purchased: BHO Classifieds

Year Purchased: 2013
Price Paid: 650 ($US) (bought USED)

Sound

Sounds great, I'm only a beginner but it sounds a lot nicer than the banjo i was renting when i first started

Sound Rating: 9

Setup

tuning pegs were slightly loose when i got the banjo, after tightening them i have not had any issues (been about a month)
also the head was not very tight, but this banjo was purchased used (even though i don't think the last owner touched it)

Setup Rating: 5

Appearance

has a simple look which i am kind of partial to, and the matte finish looks and feels nice

Appearance Rating: 9

Reliability

can't see any reason why this banjo would not last for a long time to come

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

bought used

Customer Service: not rated

Components

i like the fact that this banjo came with planetary tuners, as most banjos in this price range do not

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

Love this banjo!!

Overall Rating: 9

Submitted by banjaboy (see all reviews from this person) on 2/14/2013

Where Purchased: Online Guitar

Year Purchased:
Price Paid: 600 ($US)

Sound

Its for bluegrass. virtually impossible to set up, even after $200 luthier work.

Sound Rating: 7

Setup

What can I say, unplayable when I got it, cost me $200 for a new nut, wood rim sand and set up.

Setup Rating: 1

Appearance

Its easy on the eye, unstated beauty but like a lot of Asian junk its lipstick on a pig, hide quality with flash, I fell for it. Once the resonator is removed its almost impossible to put it back on as the studs on the pot are poorly spaced, no excuse for that.

Appearance Rating: 2

Reliability

Hardware looks okay but who knows? Only time will tell and I have sold this thing already after only 3 weeks of ownership.

Reliability Rating: 8

Customer Service

Warranty? A joke! too long a story to go into here, but in my case, customer service was ZERO, the seller tried to help me and reimbursed me for the cost of a new nut as the one it came with was mis cut. It does have an international warranty but obviously it doesn't apply to us in Canada. Pity 1 is the lowest rating. This particular RK deserves a -10!

Customer Service: 1

Components

Again, components look fine, pity they are assembled by less than top notch people. Serves me right for buying a banjo made in Asia lol!!! rice and cars but banjos? Not yet.

Components Rating: 8

Overall Comments

I have been through hell with this sub par instrument. I listened to the hype of the RK Koolaide drinkers on here and I got a Friday model. Maybe they are mostly good, mine was a joke. Thank God I managed to get rid of it to someone who I pointed the flaws out to and was prepared to play with it. I lost my shirt on it.

Overall Rating: 1

Submitted by longeagle5 (see all reviews from this person) on 10/23/2012

Where Purchased: Instrument Alley

Year Purchased: 2012
Price Paid: 761.00 ($US)

Sound

I play Scruggs style banjo and upgraded from an openback Epiphone and the sound and tone is amazing, I played a few different banjos before deciding on this one. Banjos that were comparable in sound were often $1500-$2000 more.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

I sprung for the upgraded setup, since i am relatively new to the banjo I didn't want to mess anything up. All i had to do to play it was tune it up and let her rip!! I would highly recommend spending the extra money for a professional setup. They action is right on and I didn't waste hours attempting to set it up

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

I love the seagull inlays and the mat finish, it is very easy on the eyes and everyone I have showed has remarked on how beautiful the banjo looks. Their is a small discoloration on the first inlay where the wood and the inlay meet but unless your staring at it and looking for it you don't notice.

Appearance Rating: 9

Reliability

After researching I found out that the hardware on the RK 35 and 36 have the same hardware as their RK 80's which is about 500 bucks more. The tone ring gives the banjo a really loud punch that startles anyone not expecting it! As of right now I won't need to upgrade it, I showed my banjo teacher and he pointed out things I can do if I get board with the sound, new tailpiece etc. He plays a Gibson and picked on my RK, and as he put it he had some banjo envy!!!

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

N/A for RK
Instrument Alley-They posted that they were out on their website. After emailing them to find out when they would have more they informed me that they had one more and if I ordered it soon they could get it to me. If I would have sprung just for the Banjo, did my own set up and not upgraded the case (got a tweed one) The banjo and a free case would have cost me 651. It was the best deal I have found anywhere else. I would highly recommend instrument alley!

Customer Service: 10

Components

Aside from my banjo instructor giving me some overall tips and tricks to change the sound. Out of the box I won't change a thing and thats even what my banjo teacher said. He had to play it one more time before the end of my lesson he was just that impressed by it. All of the hardware is very well put together and it makes a beautiful sounding banjo. I may eventually swap out bridges or even a tailpiece but that will be YEARS down the road. Out of the box you could play this at a gig and be confidant in its sound.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

If you don't mind not buying an "American Made" banjo this is the best banjo for the money. If you buy a comparable american made banjo for the same price, you don't get as good of hardware or a TONE RING! This is the best quality and most affordable banjo on the market today, I wanted to buy a banjo
that I can grow into including getting better, playing in jams and if I get good enough even playing in a band. This banjo will do all of that. The only thing that caught me off guard was the neck it is actually a little thinner than most banjos on the market so my playing had to adjust accordingly.

Looking at the scores 10's may seem a little suspect but I assure you this is a great banjo for the money! If you have any intention of getting better and buying a better banjo why buy cheap and have to upgrade every few years? This banjo allows you to buy a quality instrument with quality parts for a bargain price.

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by Spitfire-Smith (see all reviews from this person) on 4/4/2012

Where Purchased: Zepp Country Music

Year Purchased: 2012
Price Paid: 719.99 ($US)

Sound

I love the sound. I moved into this from an Epiphone MB-200 "bottlecap" banjo and the tone of this one blows the Epiphone out of the water. The maple wood gives it a brighter sound, but the lower notes are very rich.

Sound Rating: 9

Setup

The setup was excellent, the action was a little high for my liking, but that's easily fixed. Intonation was set perfectly. Marc at Zepp did an excellent job.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

A lot of people say that it is not a very well decorated banjo and complain about the satin finish (saying that they prefer the glossy look). In my opinion, this banjo is gorgeous. I love the seagull inlay and I really love the finish on it. It's sort of an understated beauty.

Appearance Rating: 8

Reliability

The hardware on this banjo puts my old one to shame. The bracket hooks have to be twice the thickness of the ones on my Epiphone. Recording King has a great reputation for their reliability, so i can't see having too many problems.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

I never dealt with Recording King directly, but Zepp Country Music was a pleasure to deal with. It comes with a limited lifetime warranty for the original purchaser.

Customer Service: 10

Components

The 3 ply maple rim is beautiful, and the tone ring looks really good as well. The only part I might replace is the bridge. It's very plain, and I might want a taller one as well.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

I'm in love. This is going to be a banjo I have for the rest of my life.

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by MrHoney (see all reviews from this person) on 1/22/2012

Where Purchased: Banjo.com

Year Purchased: 2012
Price Paid: 719 ($US)

Sound

It registers the low end full, round sound--mid tones are punchy but warm and is clear up-the-neck. Nice bluegrass sound for Scruggs style pickin'. I haven't changed the factory bridge, I probably won't until I find a need to. Sound is real nice right out of the box.

Sound Rating: 9

Setup

Banjo came setup, with the RR spikes I requested. I haven't had to change anything or update it. As I learn more about the tonal differences in bridges and hardware, I may think about changing them. I don't see the need right now, everything seems great.

Setup Rating: 9

Appearance

Maple banjo with satin finish. One piece flange, bell brass cast tone ring, planetary tuners, brass tension hoop, cool simplistic seagull inlay.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

Solid banjo, everything looks well made and fitted. I've only had it a couple of weeks but it still looks like it did when I took it out of it's case for the first time.

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

Recording King banjos come with a lifetime warranty. Didn't have any communication with RK themselves.

Customer Service: not rated

Components

The only thing I would consider changing is the bridge. There's nothing wrong with the factory bridge (maple,ebony top), I've just heard name brand bridges may give you the specific sound you might be looking for.

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

I feel like I bought a really good banjo. Played it at a my first jam and it sounded great compared to other banjos and with other high quality instruments. Nevermind the fact that I got it for under $1000. The sticker price was $719, it cost me $909 all said and done. That was a 2200mile shipment. Came with a case and RR spikes.

Overall Rating: 9

Submitted by BoBanjo (see all reviews from this person) on 12/14/2011

Where Purchased: Thomann - Germany

Year Purchased: 2011
Price Paid: 3750:00 (Swedish. Crowns) historic exchange rates / currency converter

Sound

A perfect rich full sound for me and my bands needs.
It is as good as my 1990 E.S.S. Gibson. (!)
GREAT sounding banjo!

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

As that the banjo came right from the factory box and needed to be transported from the German Thomann company to Sweden, it needed some set up work by me. I removed that little screw from the Presto copy tailpiece and raised it some. Then I tighten the head to my preference.

Setup Rating: 2

Appearance

I like this simple "under dog" plain appearance, but yet, it´s well made and the inlays are made with real Mother of pearl. Very fine!
The neck and resonator is stained in brown and the wood grain is plain. This banjo is very easy on the eyes!

Appearance Rating: 9

Reliability

Yes, the hardware is as excellent as on a $3500:00 banjo.
The 5th peg I will probably change into a 5-star later on.
Also, the knobs I´ll change - just for pure appearance reason.
The Presto copy tailpiece will later on, be change as well into an original Presto. I noticed the one that´s on seams a bit thin.
The pot is GREAT!

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Never needed any further service from Thomann - they deliver and I am happy.
The Recording King company seams to be a provider of great quality instruments and I think they stay behind their products!

Customer Service: not rated

Components

The pot is GREAT.
If I squeeze out of anything to complain about on this RK-R35 Madison that would be the bridge, the tailpiece and the knobs on the tuning machines. Those things are easy to replace.

Components Rating: 10

Overall Comments

If you search for a bargain searching for a good quality bluegrass banjo - this is it!

Kudos to Greg Rich - the GREAT banjo industrial designer!

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by Munnlos (see all reviews from this person) on 11/19/2011

Where Purchased: musiciansfriend.com

Year Purchased: 2011
Price Paid: 699 + $150 shipping ($US)

Sound

The banjo sounds really great, the sounds was more full and louder than my older low-tier banjo.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

I don't know what to say. I expected the banjo to be fully set up since it all came in one big box anyways. I had to tighten some screws which was really tiresome, and some of the other adjustable things won't fit.

(the character 4 is because of musiciansfriend.com, not the banjo)

Setup Rating: 4

Appearance

Delicious maple wood makes great sound, but it's really heavy compared to my previous banjo which I can't say for sure is made of wood at all, it could be plastic for all I know...

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

It has the appearance and durability of an artisans craft. Although it's really heavy so I wouldn't carry it around places.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

There is a warranty.

Customer Service: 5

Components

I do not know enough about banjo components to judge on this matter, but it all looks decent enough.

Components Rating: 7

Overall Comments

Do not order from musiciansfriend.com. They do not handle their instruments with care, nor provide normal human customer service.

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by impickin5 (see all reviews from this person) on 10/25/2011

Where Purchased: The Banjo Hut

Year Purchased: 2011
Price Paid: 700 Including case ($US)

Sound

Right out of the box it sounded awesome. A real prewar flathead tone for a bluegrass banjo even with the original bridge. I replaced the bridge with a Yates and it sounded even better.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

The only thing I did for setup was raise the tailpiece and the armrest a little and checked the coord rod nuts. The upper coord rod nut was about a half turn tighter than I like. I like the nuts just about 1/8 of a turn past snug. The action was just perfect for my liking.

Setup Rating: 10

Appearance

I love the matte finish and aged binding. Though the banjo doesn't have some of the frills of higher priced banjos such as fancy inlays, concentric inlays in the resonator, fancy cut peghead, etc, it doesn't bother me. Hey, it's the tone and playability I'm looking for.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

Completely satisfied with all wood and metal parts except the tuners. See below.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Haven't had any trouble or need there.

Customer Service: not rated

Components

I'm not impressed with the tuners. Wish they had used the Gotoh's like the higher end RK's. Would have preferred ivoroid tuner buttons rather than the pearloid buttons as the ivoroid buttons would look nicer and match the aged binding.

Also, would have been nice if the banjo included RR spikes at 7th, 8th & 9th frets.

Components Rating: 8

Overall Comments

The overall quality and tone of this banjo would exceed the quality and tone of any banjo costing 5-8 times the cost of this banjo. IMHO, it's the best buy anywhere for the money.

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by lazlototh (see all reviews from this person) on 6/24/2011

Where Purchased: Music Gear Club

Year Purchased: 2011
Price Paid: 500 ($US)

Sound

Sounds great. Very loud. Almost too loud. Is going to be a honker in a group setting.
Bright all across the strings.

Sound Rating: 10

Setup

Head was loose. Even with a loose head, it sounded pretty good.
Just tightened up the head.
Might stand having a compensated bridge.

Setup Rating: 9

Appearance

Very nice look. A little plain, but for the price, I cannot complain.
Was sold as a second due to a very tiny chip in the binding.
I can take those defects all day long!
Somewhat inconsistent staining on laminated neck, but then again for the price, it is an awesome deal.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

Very solid hardware, except for tailpiece. The tailpiece seems thin, but works adequately. Tuners are not excellent but are good enough.
Once again, for the price, these are minor details.

Reliability Rating: 10

Customer Service

Never dealt with them. They do have good deals for people who can deal with minor defects.

Customer Service: 10

Components

The sound says it all.
I would consider changing the tailpiece, bridge and tuners, but then again, as some have said, the package works very well as is, so I will wait and listen.
It is getting better as it is played more.

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

I love this banjo! It is the best, loudest bluegrass banjo I have ever had.
Greg Rich and Scott Zimmerman have done an incredible job!

Overall Rating: 10

Submitted by BoneDigger (see all reviews from this person) on 5/4/2011

Where Purchased: www.banjohut.com

Year Purchased: 2011
Price Paid: 700 ($US)

Sound

I use this banjo for bluegrass, Scruggs style. I am very impressed with the tone and projection of this banjo. The only thing that the banjo needed from the factory was a set of strings (the originals were extra light) and a new bridge to bring out the tones that the banjo is capable of. From the factory, the banjo sounded really good but was a little week on #4, the bass string. I replaced the factory bridge with a dam spillway bridge and put on light gauge JD Crow strings. Now it sounds just as good as any banjo I have played, and I've played quite a few.

Sound Rating: 9

Setup

The banjo was set up pretty well when I received it from Banjohut.com. My only complaint was with the RR spikes I had installed for the fifth string. they did a bad job on those and every one of them buzzed. So, that's an issue with the seller, not the company or banjo. The setup was generally very good although the strings could have been better.

Setup Rating: 8

Appearance

I LOVE the way the banjo looks. The finish, the inlays, the peghead, all look great! I can't honestly think of anything I would change in this regard.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

All of the hardware is of good quality. I have not had an y issues with any of it and I doubt I will. The tuners stay in tune and are smooth. The tailpiece, flange, rim, head, etc. all feel sturdy and strong.

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

I have not had any dealings with the company but they have a presence on this site so that's a good thing.

Customer Service: 8

Components

I can't think of anything that really stands out aside from the finish on the resonator and neck. I like the satin finish rather than the highly glossy finish on most banjos. I have not found anything "cheap" aside from the bridge which I didn't like very much but that's typical of most banjos I have owned.

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

I am very happy with this purchase. The RK35 was exactly what I wanted and cost only $700! I have owned quite a few banjos and I like this one the best of all that I have owned. My Deering Sierra (now traded) would probably tie for second with the Fender Artist I owned for many years. This banjo has a great tonal quality up and down the neck, good hardware, and looks fantastic! I highly recommend it!

Overall Rating: 9

Submitted by DENNISNDODIE (see all reviews from this person) on 11/15/2010

Where Purchased: Banjo.com

Year Purchased: 2010
Price Paid: 679.00 ($US)

Sound

I have no complaints it sounds as good as any banjo Ive played.

Sound Rating: 9

Setup

It has good action and the bridge location marked. I had them put on a Kershner tail piece and a Hatfield bridge.

Setup Rating: 9

Appearance

Good looking banjo, seagull inlay ,dark stained maple, nickel plated metal nice and shiny. I have no complaints.

Appearance Rating: 10

Reliability

It has a 3 piece neck with joints at the heel and peghead very well done. Classic pot assembly with quality parts.It will get the job done

Reliability Rating: 9

Customer Service

Lifetime Warranty to original owner. They should of caught the crooked resonator before shipping.

Customer Service: 5

Components

Inlay work is very nice.Tuners could be better. Better quality stock bridge.The flange didnt set properly inside the resonator,the 4 brackets are either to far down on the rim or the neck notch in the resonator is to shallow.Also the four brakets hit the inside of the resonator. I took them all off and cut 1/8 inch off of all 4 of them, now I need to deepen the resonator neck slot or raise the braketts about 3/16 on the rear of the banjo so the resonator sits flush around the flange. Quality should of caught that before I received it.

Components Rating: 9

Overall Comments

Considering what I paid for other banjos. This banjo is the best deal on the market. Great sound,Great playability,Great looks.It had a few quality issues but they were easily fixed.

Overall Rating: 9

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