ST-59 review by Hohner

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 8
  • Features: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 9.6 Superb
  • Users' score: 8.8 (29 votes)
Hohner: ST-59

Price paid: $ 219.6

Purchased from: TrebleRock Music, Bristol

Sound — 10
I mainly play various types of rock, punk and grunge. This guitar suits me for all of them, and any other songs i feel like playing. Gives a very raw sound on the bridge pickup and a full warm sound on the neck, just as single coils should. My practice set-up is a zoom 707MkII and Crate GX15R. The guitar can do anything from accoustic to metal with very little fuzz, even at full volume - amp provides that :(.

Overall Impression — 10
The only slight dislike I have is that the maple fretboard shows up the dirt. This was my first serious guitar and is great for solos and chord strumming. I've played several Strat copies from different makes (Yamaha, Tanglewood, squire etc.) and this is my favourite by far. They don't make them anymore, but I'd recommend anyone who sees one cheaply to buy it, as is is a great beginner/intermediate guitar, but is still great for someone of higher ability. If it were lost I would try really hard to get a replacement. Hohner are not well known for their guitars, but overall this is a great guitar - very heavy, so perhaps not best suited for a long performance - but very reliable and feels great to play.

Reliability & Durability — 10
The hardware seems in perfect condition and the guitar takes a fair bit of abuse pretty much every day. Never had any problems with the strap buttonsm but the nut around the output jack occasionally comes lose, but tightens back up easily. I have played this live without a backup and it worked fine - a very trustworthy guitar :)

Action, Fit & Finish — 8
The action is fairly high for a Strat, but that suits me. Slight fret buzz on the 6th string 1st fret, but not always. The Trem setup is surprisingly responsive and has claimed a few strings over the years. 1 tiny paint bubble on the underside of the upper horn and a couple of hairline cracks inside the cutaways. It has been dropped on several occasions and bounced about in the back of vehicles, but there are no chips or scratches. Overall a very reliable finish. Also keeps tune very well, I only have to retune it if it's been transported.

Features — 10
Strat copy, probably Korean made, black body with "tin foil" effect scratchplate and lightwood neck and fretboard. 22 frets, solid body s/s/s pickups with 5-way selector. Generic passive pickups but with "ATN [Advanced Tonal Network]circuitry" which I haven't been able to find out much about, other than it is something to do with all the pickups being wired into a big capacitor - the bridge pickup is hot (not wired to tone controls) and middle pickup may be reverse wired. 2 tone pots, 1 volume. Non locking tuners. Thinnish neck. Standard Strat trem bridge. Think the neck is maple and the body poplar (not 100% sure, but it is VERY heavy). This guitar was 200 with Crate GX15R practice amp, gigbag, strap, lead and picks.

5 comments sorted by best / new / date

    I have a red tint mahogany body one for $125 from a local pro who worked for Hohner. The guitar had the bridge replaced with a hardtail type and it did cover the tremolo hole. Stable and the pickups are quite good. I mean better than most any of the Fenders and Squiers until you get into $1000 guitars. These Korean ones were well made of good woods and skilled people made them. The pickup set alone is worth $100, easily. Don't pass them buy. Look for them as well as the Jackson Performer series Strat HSS type guitars. Another cheap gem !
    Erm no mate, it is actually Hohner " ST -59 professional " , and a very good quality strat copy. As the man said, they dont make them anymore. Better luck next time at the guitar identification trials. HOFNER are german, these are made in Korea.
    there was also a 'ST-57' model. I got a pickguard and all components taken from one, but never put it on a body yet. My ST-59 does sound and play well and was $125. For a good Stratocaster, that is a deal !