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Product 584354

Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica   

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The Special 20 is the go-to harp for harmonica players of any style, including blues, country, folk, or rock. The Special 20 delivers the coveted Mar...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

The go-to harp for professionals and the first choice for those learning to play.

The Special 20 is the go-to harp for harmonica players of any style, including blues, country, folk, or rock. The Special 20 delivers the coveted Marine Band sound and offers the benefits of its plastic comb: it doesn't absorb moisture so it won't swell, shrink, or crack; it lasts longer and is more airtight than wood combs that can become swollen, twisted, and warped; airtight construction provides increased responsiveness; plastic provides comfort and it's smoother on the lips, preventing chafing.

Another plus of the Hohner 560 Special 20 is that the harmonica's reed plates are recessed into the comb. This keeps the sharp edges of the brass reed plates (found on most harps) from harming your lips. The Special 20 is the harp-of-choice of harmonica virtuoso John Popper of the band Blues Traveler and was played by Bob Dylan on his 2007-2008 tour. Chances are your favorite player has several of these harmonicas in his case.

Choose your desired key!

About Hohner:
Hohner is a family company founded in 1857 in Trossingen, Germany by Matthias Hohner. Hand-made quality and close attention to detail has set Hohner apart from the beginning. A top leading brand in harmonicas, Hohner harps are distributed worldwide. Hohner harmonicas are played on the street by buskers, in intimate nightclubs, on festival stages, and even in Carnegie Hall. Despite a diverse harmonica line used in music from country to classical genres, the most famous Hohner harmonicas are their simple, 10-hole diatonics used frequently by blues, rock, country, and folk musicians.

FEATURES
  • 10-hole diatonic
  • Professional quality
  • Standard (Richter) tuning
  • Genuine brass plates
  • Plastic comb
  • Bolted-on covers
  • Reeds: 20
  • Reedplates: brass; 0.9 mm
  • Plastic comb
  • Length: 10 cm
  • Hohner harmonicas feature:
  • Improved reed profiles to increase reed life by over 200%
  • Precision die punches to ensure reed plates with unparalleled air tightness
  • Improved tuning accuracy (through investment in innovative new tools)
  • Extremely stable stainless steel covers that won't tarnish and are easy to clean
  • Dynamic range and highest volume of most any commercially made harmonica
  • Super-fast response at all volume levels
  • Easily adjustability for overblows

order the 560 Special 20 today and get an awesome response, superior bendability, and the sweetest tone.

Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
Hohner560 Special 20 Harmonica
 
4.7

(based on 71 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (55)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (12)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (3)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

98%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Good audio (32)
  • Easy to play (31)
  • Consistent (28)
  • Quality craftsmanship (26)
  • Warm tone (24)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Accompaniment (22)
  • Small venues (11)
  • Soundtracks (7)
  • Jazz clubs (5)
  • Blues (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Novice (22), Experienced (14), Professional musician (8)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

A great harmonica well worth the money

If you've read this far, then that means I've hopefully held your interest. This is one of the best harps I have played, and you owe it to yourself to pick one up...Read complete review

If you've read this far, then that means I've hopefully held your interest. This is one of the best harps I have played, and you owe it to yourself to pick one up and give it a shot. The construction is fantastic, tone quality is superb, and the playability is the best I've ever had.
There isn't a whole lot to say about the features of this harmonica. Few have anything special beyond the standard build, but I will say Hohner's move to push home-repairs is a great boon, and this harmonica suits it. Keep in mind harmonicas, even those with plastic combs, DO need to be repaired/replaced. The reeds can and will go out at some point, so they will need to be replaced. Thankfully, it's a simple affair made even simpler by Hohner by offering replacement parts and tools (sold separately).

It does come with a case (assuming you just order an individual harp), but I wouldn't rely on it too much. It's a hard plastic case, and the harp does jiggle around in it. Odds are, if you're going to be running around with a harmonica, you've probably invested in a set of these and have a nice case to carry them in.
I've played a few different harps over the years, and I finally decided to drop a little extra scratch and pick up the Special 20 (a buddy of mine swears by them).

I'm primarily a hill country style blues harp player, so I needed something that had a strong, even sound, and allowed me to bend easily. This is it. I've played Chicago Blues harps, and the Piedmont Blues set, and those are absolute tripe compared to this beauty of a harmonica. It plays so well, I barely have to make any effort.. And it's LOUD!

Solid construction, with some nice weight to it makes me feel very comfortable playing it. Plastic combs mean you don't have to worry as much about moisture, which is a good thing. Wood would probably sound better, but if you're like me, you hate it when facial hair gets ripped out by the harp (which WILL happen with a wood comb - it'll expand and catch your hair like nobody's business).

If you're looking for a harp worthy of doing some raw blues, I'd say look no further. This baby can bend and wail with ease.
I bought a Piedmont Blues 7 piece set with case about a year ago for the same price as this one harmonica.

I wasted my money then. Sure, $30-something for a harmonica may seem like a lot (especially if you're buying multiple keys), but you simply can't beat the quality of it. You may be surprised to learn that you can spend upwards of $100-150 bucks on a hand-machined harp, and while you're getting a really nice harp for that value, you are getting diminishing returns. This is the sweet spot right here.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

quality control?

I give these harps a 9 if they are working. A "0" if they fall apart.
I've been playing Special 20's essentially ever since they first appeared on...Read complete review

I give these harps a 9 if they are working. A "0" if they fall apart.
I've been playing Special 20's essentially ever since they first appeared on the market. As a weekend musican who gigs once/twice per week and plays each of the 6 harps I use in 2-3 songs each per night, these are just what I need. Tone, quality, play-ability. A worthy improvement over the Hohner Blues Harps I used before these came out.
They used to be first-rate. The reeds lasted much longer than those of their predecessors. Over the last year, they inexplicably started just coming apart. I mean literally, the little screws that hold the things together just come loose and fall out. Try finding one of those little bastards on the the floor of a stage in a bar sometime. You basically throw the harp away and buy another for. This has happened to me four times in the last year.
Great if they stay together. They are worthless if they fall apart.

Reviewed by 71 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A great harmonica well worth the money

By William Leffert

from Hannibal, MO

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

If you've read this far, then that means I've hopefully held your interest. This is one of the best harps I have played, and you owe it to yourself to pick one up and give it a shot. The construction is fantastic, tone quality is superb, and the playability is the best I've ever had.
There isn't a whole lot to say about the features of this harmonica. Few have anything special beyond the standard build, but I will say Hohner's move to push home-repairs is a great boon, and this harmonica suits it. Keep in mind harmonicas, even those with plastic combs, DO need to be repaired/replaced. The reeds can and will go out at some point, so they will need to be replaced. Thankfully, it's a simple affair made even simpler by Hohner by offering replacement parts and tools (sold separately).

It does come with a case (assuming you just order an individual harp), but I wouldn't rely on it too much. It's a hard plastic case, and the harp does jiggle around in it. Odds are, if you're going to be running around with a harmonica, you've probably invested in a set of these and have a nice case to carry them in.
I've played a few different harps over the years, and I finally decided to drop a little extra scratch and pick up the Special 20 (a buddy of mine swears by them).

I'm primarily a hill country style blues harp player, so I needed something that had a strong, even sound, and allowed me to bend easily. This is it. I've played Chicago Blues harps, and the Piedmont Blues set, and those are absolute tripe compared to this beauty of a harmonica. It plays so well, I barely have to make any effort.. And it's LOUD!

Solid construction, with some nice weight to it makes me feel very comfortable playing it. Plastic combs mean you don't have to worry as much about moisture, which is a good thing. Wood would probably sound better, but if you're like me, you hate it when facial hair gets ripped out by the harp (which WILL happen with a wood comb - it'll expand and catch your hair like nobody's business).

If you're looking for a harp worthy of doing some raw blues, I'd say look no further. This baby can bend and wail with ease.
I bought a Piedmont Blues 7 piece set with case about a year ago for the same price as this one harmonica.

I wasted my money then. Sure, $30-something for a harmonica may seem like a lot (especially if you're buying multiple keys), but you simply can't beat the quality of it. You may be surprised to learn that you can spend upwards of $100-150 bucks on a hand-machined harp, and while you're getting a really nice harp for that value, you are getting diminishing returns. This is the sweet spot right here.

(6 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

 
2.0

quality control?

By Steven Raynor

from New York

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

I give these harps a 9 if they are working. A "0" if they fall apart.
I've been playing Special 20's essentially ever since they first appeared on the market. As a weekend musican who gigs once/twice per week and plays each of the 6 harps I use in 2-3 songs each per night, these are just what I need. Tone, quality, play-ability. A worthy improvement over the Hohner Blues Harps I used before these came out.
They used to be first-rate. The reeds lasted much longer than those of their predecessors. Over the last year, they inexplicably started just coming apart. I mean literally, the little screws that hold the things together just come loose and fall out. Try finding one of those little bastards on the the floor of a stage in a bar sometime. You basically throw the harp away and buy another for. This has happened to me four times in the last year.
Great if they stay together. They are worthless if they fall apart.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

My favorite

By El Gato

from Eugene, OR

See all my reviews

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

I play amplified blues harp in a band - have played for a long time and have bought just about every harp there is. Some come close, but they are all more expensive. None - be it Crossover, Seydel, Suzuki - you name it, satisfies me like the SP 20. They last forever, stay in tune, have a rich tone that can honk like crazy in the right hands. With most harps in its class going up to over 50 bucks, this baby is not only the best all around blues harp I own, but is looking like a real bargain. I started using these when they first came out, decades ago - and nothing has made me switch harps permanently to this day. There are a lot of newcomers out there in harp-land, but if you are a beginner or way, way beyond, all I can say is - the Special 20 does it for me time after time - go for it!

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

The Best

By Elijah Righter

from Undisclosed

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

I have never regretted buying a special 20, It was my 3rd harmonica and my first G harp, and it's been my favorite since then.
Well it features what a harmonica would, 10 holes and bendable reeds.
The reeds are easy to bend and it's great for any style of play. It's also plenty durable I've put a dent in the cover before having dropped one many times and It still plays just fine. German made harps are always the best.
It's cheap for the quality, everytime I need a new harp this price is no sweat.

(4 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

New Happy Harp Player

By Disappointed Cable User

from Midwest

See all my reviews

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

Works much better than toy versions I recall from years gone by. I'm very happy with my purchase.
Other reviews said this harp was a relatively good harmonica for a new player. I'm an adult and don't know how to play any instruments but I've been having a lot of fun playing this harmonica. It's easy to play and get good sound from it. I purchased the key of E because it sounded good to me after listening to some people showing off their talents in different keys using Hohner harmonicas. I'm happy I bought this product.
This is a solid product. It doesn't feel like a toy.
These days we all want better deals but I do feel this product is priced right for the quality and ease of use.

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A Great Harp!

By Keith L.

from Atlanta, Georgia

See all my reviews

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

This is Really a Great Harp!!! I bought it at the same time I purchased a cheaper 'box' of chinese made Hohners that had ok reviews. Holly you know what! This is a wonderful piece don't bother with the cheaper ones and especially for a kid. With this one you get true sound with the cheaper ones crap. With this I can bend 'em and do it all right out of the box! Save time and money buy this Special 20 for a try! Made in Germany what a difference.

(4 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

560 Special 20 Harmonica

By Gary Foss

from MN

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

Great harp!!
I'm relatively new to playing harmonica, so I really don't know much about features on harmonicas. I can bend notes some on the special 20. I played it in church for worship team, and they absolutely ate it up!!
Never had an issue with any of mine,but then again, I'm new at it. Only been playing for a few months. Seems sturdy, and well made. I don't expect that it will have the quality that a hihger priced harmonica would have, but then I'm not that serious of a player to require something that high priced.
Great bang for the buck!

(4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Best I've played so far

By fevbusch

from Brooklyn, NY

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

I really wasn't happy with my Lee oscars and sure glad I tried this special 20. Right out of the box it is sweet, powerful and seems to have bends built into it. I don't even know how to bend but I could feel the bends when I over blew. I takes so little air that I'm amazed at how they did this without using windsavers. Very comfortable in my mouth, too. This plays as good as my old 10 hole Chromonica, except this 20 takes less wind to sound. I would never play the Lee Oskar after this, because the LO has a tinnier sound and doesn't have the fulness and richness of the 20. I can't believe that people complain that this 20 costs 2 or 3 dollars more than other of the better diatonics. I'll gladly pay the few bucks more for this kind of instrument.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Time to update from my worn out Harps.

By Louie

from Eastern CT

About Me Experienced

See all my reviews

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Rich Sound
  • Same Spacing

Cons

  • Temptation To Buy More

Best Uses

  • Accompaniment
  • With Guitar

Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

I grew attached to the Blues Harp and didn't feel the need to change. After wearing out the old units, several times, I decided to try and upgrade with a few 560 special 20's. Wow! This old man he plays with less wind now. These are smooth and fine resonating instruments. Fits Right in nicely for my style of Christian music with Guitar.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Love Special 20's

By jayduke

from Philadelphia, PA

About Me Experienced

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Easy To Play
  • Quality Craftsmanship
  • Rich Sound
  • Warm Tone

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Accompaniment
    • Small Venues

    Comments about Hohner 560 Special 20 Harmonica:

    I started playing a Marine Band some 40 years ago, so I am partial to Hohner. Special 20's have been my love for the last 20 or so years. I have tried other brands and other models, but for me Special 20s have the best combination of comfort, tone, and fluidity. I like the sounds and tone, and I can get good effects with them playing either acoustic or electric. They are smooth-they fit the hand and the mouth very well. Love them

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