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!
7003 reviews in the archive.
Where Purchased: Direct from Nechville
My Nechville is a tenor banjo tuned CGDA, and I play in Dixieland bands, I have had the banjo for a week and I am pleased with its performance on gigs. Its sound is clean and clear, and the tuning is true throughout its range, with no buzzes or rattles. My colleague musicians comment that it is a gentler sound than my OME Mogul. However Nechville have fitted a pick-up and if I need more volume I can play it through my excellent AER acoustic amplifier. Nechville banjos are easy to adjust. I shall experiment with the tightness of the head using the supplied tools for the revolutionary Helimount construction. The set of Allen keys also make setting neck and tailpiece angles easy. It may be possible for the Nechville to have the volume of the Ome after some experimentation. I like the gentler sound though that I am getting from the Nechville. Why have two banjos that sound the same?
Sound Rating: 8
The banjo was well set up on receipt. The action is low, and other banjo players have commented on the ease of playing that this action, combined with the slightly radiussed fingerboard, gives.
Setup Rating: 9
I asked Nechville for a black banjo to match my black Gretsch guitar. Consequently all hardwear is a matt black - metal rim, tailpiece, tuners, fingerboard, head - all black! The engineering is excellent and everything is flush and neat. There are simple mother of pearl fleur-de-lys placemarkers on the fingerboard.
There is a beautifully grained dark brown wood on the neck and resonator, with a fantastic highly polished finish.
It is a very simple instrument. I like it a lot, and it is a complete contrast to my gold engraved Ome which one bandleader dscribes as "tarty"!
Appearance Rating: 9
I am sure that this banjo is made to last, and I don't envisage buying another banjo in my lifetime.
Reliability Rating: 9
Nechville are guaranteed to the original owner for life. I have been very pleased with the contacts at Nechville. Tom Nechville telephoned to suggest improvements and amendments, during the banjo's construction, and the banjo was built to my specification, even down to the last millimetre of the scale length. Nechville's agent in the UK, Richard Webster has been excellent and helpful.
Customer Service: 10
Obviously the Heli-Mount construction is the stand-out feature. The elimination of all the bolts and brackets and their shoes makes for a lighter instrument, and eliminates a source of rattles. I think that this has to be the future of banjo construction for the 21st century.
Components Rating: 10
I think that this Nechville banjo, at a third of the purchase price of my Ome, is incredible value for an instrument of such high quality. I would not hesitate to recommend it.
Overall Rating: 10
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