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Thread: New concert advice

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2017
    Location
    Utah
    Posts
    59

    Default New concert advice

    I'm in the market for a new concert. I've been playing since April and I'm seriously hooked. At present I have a Teton laminate concert that was my starter uke, a Bonanza HPL concert that is my outdoor adventure uke, and a nice Islander tenor that I won at a ukulele festival last month. The tenor is solid spruce top/maple.

    I was saving money to buy a tenor, so winning one was nice. Now that I have it, I find the concert size to be my happy place. I'm working on getting comfy with the tenor, but I'm not sure if I'll keep it long term? I'm on the verge of paying off my house (yipee) and I want to treat myself to a nice concert ukulele that I will hopefully love and keep for a long time. Once I have it, I'll gift my Teton to a friend who wants to learn to play.

    So here's where I'm at.....I'm a female with large hands, but shorter chubby fingers. I'm not sure about nut width, but I don't want a chunky neck. Maybe a 1.5 inch nut if the neck is slim? Solid mahogany or koa. Nice looking, but not a lot of bling. Satin finish is my only absolute requirement, or at minimum a satin neck. Budget - $1000 give or take, would rather go lower. I do not have access to any higher end ukes locally, so I'm going on gut, recommendations, and listening to sound samples. I will probably buy from HMS, Uke Republic, or Mim to ensure a good setup. I might have a MiSi pickup installed?

    Some I've considered are....
    Kala Elite - however Corey at HMS says they have a thick neck with the 1.5 nut. HMS does have a slim neck 1 3/8 nut Kala Elite Mahogany that sounds nice.

    Loprinzi - HMS has a Koa concert. Slim neck, 1 3/8 nut I think?

    Kanilea E Silk - 1.5 nut but slimmer neck. Good recommend from Corey at HMS, but a little over budget. I wish someone had a satin finish listed.

    Ohana - waiting on a recommend from Mim. I'm not familiar with Ohana. I don't know anything about their nut or neck size.

    Ko Aloha - wider nut and slim neck I think? A pikake model just comes in within my budget.

    What am I missing? What recommendations do you folks have for me?
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Pickering, ON, Canada
    Posts
    3,846

    Default

    If you want a koa concert then one of the K brands is the way to go. From everything you have mentioned about your requirements the Koaloha Pikake would tick off all your boxes, especially your non gloss finish preference. I have owned two Koaloha concerts and they are fabulous, with a tone that is so full and resonant and loud. The neck is very comfortable, not deep at all, although the nut width is a tad wider at about 1-7/16" the string spacing is the same as a nut width of 1-3/8".
    Ukuleles.............yes please !!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Upper Hale, Surrey/Hants border, UK.
    Posts
    3,777

    Default

    Ohana solid mahogany are good for their price, I have 3 of them, but mine are all long necks, as that is what I like.

    A concert size (CK35) could be a good starting point for you to look at, & there are sound samples on the internet.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RzzKmGG25J4
    https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=ohana+ck35

    You might also like to consider a long neck.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3C4IUruNtk
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMgbRqu0fWY&t=319s
    Keith M --> likes a long neck - & being different.....

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Oak Park, Illinois
    Posts
    2,730

    Default

    The KoAloha nut is 1 7/16". Not a wide neck. I wouldn't call the neck thin either, although it is surely not thick.
    If everybody wanted peace instead of another TV, then there would be peace.
    -John Lennon-

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Posts
    3

    Default

    Concert??? Wow...Awesome.

    I like Ohana.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Walla Walla, WA
    Posts
    378

    Default

    I have a Kiwaya concert that ticks all your boxes. Mine isn't for sale, but there are several places online where you can buy one. Mine is the KTC-2, and anything in that series is similar, varying only in number of frets and bling. They also make a "Strummer" series which costs less, and is available at Elderly, among others, but I haven't been able to figure out why it's cheaper or how it differs from the KTC series.

    Mine is solid mahogany, feather light, has a very slim neck that's maybe a bit wider than usual. It plays like a dream and sounds great. The body is much bigger than, say, a Martin concert. I've only owned one tenor, which convinced me that's not my size, but comparing it to my Kiwaya soprano, I'd say its sound leans more toward tenor than soprano, which suits me, as I wanted something to string linear and use for finger picking. Mine came with UPT tuners, which are nice, but the standard Gotoh tuners are fine, too.

    They also make a Koa model, but it's quite a bit more expensive. Gorgeous wood, though, hand selected. I like how mahogany sounds, though, so I'm happy with what I have.

    There are lots of choices for a good concert. If you have patience, your money will go farther in the used marketplace. Have fun and good luck!
    Kiwaya KTS-6
    Kiwaya KTC-2
    Mahilele 3.0 Skull

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Central Ohio
    Posts
    1,255

    Default

    Buy the LoPrinzi. They are very slim necks. Lightweight ukes, sound fabulous.

    You can also buy directly from them: http://www.augustinoloprinzi.com/available-stock.html
    Laura

    Haʻina ʻia mai ana ka puana

  8. #8

    Default

    This.
    Quote Originally Posted by DownUpDave View Post
    From everything you have mentioned about your requirements the Koaloha Pikake would tick off all your boxes, especially your non gloss finish preference. I have owned two Koaloha concerts and they are fabulous, with a tone that is so full and resonant and loud. The neck is very comfortable, not deep at all, although the nut width is a tad wider at about 1-7/16" the string spacing is the same as a nut width of 1-3/8".
    Of course, it's a personal choice, but I have a KoAloha, too, but mine isn't Pikake. Solid Koa and the satin finish is done well, so the grain looks great. It's low bling, but that's what I wanted. I suspect all K-brands sound great, but mine is louder than I expected it to be. I bought it used here for <$500 because if was a factory second (brush hair in the finish), but I believe the original owner got it from HMS and the setup is easy to play and the intonation is great.

    Enjoy your new family member!
    ... or maybe I'm wrong

  9. #9

    Default

    I'm a big Kanile'a fan and highly recommend them especially if you want a 1.5 inch nut width. You get the looks and sound that you can be proud to have in your hands.
    Kanile'a KSTP Natural Koa Tenor (High G)
    Mya-Moe Curly Myrtle Tenor (Low G)
    Martin 0XB Soprano (Everyday Carry)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Santa Monica, CA
    Posts
    2,863

    Default

    The LoPrinzi neck profile is slim and very comfortable. I had a 3K longneck soprano (concert scale) that was absolutely gorgeous in all respects. The Kala Elite's are a great value in my opinion. Can't go wrong with either of these based on my experience.
    Last edited by Ukulele Eddie; 09-08-2017 at 06:45 PM.
    More an appreciator of the ukulele than a true player. My motto is: "Don't matter how good it ring if it ain't got some bling."

    Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.—Voltaire

    Curious about the relative importance of tonewood vs. the luthier? See Luthiers for a Cause to learn more!

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