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Thread: Solid Wood Soprano suggestions

  1. #11
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    Any Martin soprano , vintage is best .
    " Anything larger than a soprano is cheating "
    " I'm no luthier but ,........"

  2. #12
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    I have the sapele Opio with Living Water Strings and the maple Brueko with Worth Brown strings. I have no problem with the friction tuners with either of them.

    They are among my top three played sopranos. The other one would be the Martin OXK with Martin strings, which you might want to consider, too.

    I would give the edge to the Opio for overall sound/playability/quality as it seems to be the Coca Cola of ukes. It goes well with any song genre, with strumming and fingerpicking, with playing at the nut and playing up the neck, and can be played softly or loudly (VERY loudly). I think it edges out the other two for sound tone/quality/timber, but that might be because of the three it has a bigger lower bout.
    - Laura

    Sopranino - Vintage 1930's Camp Uke (Birch)
    Soprano - Koaloha Opio (Sapele), Martin OXK (HPL), Brueko No. 2 (Maple), Kala ASOV -S (Spruce/Ovangkol), Vintage 40's Silvertone (Mahogany), Vintage 50's Harmony (Birch), Zither Heaven (1 Black Walnut & 1 Cherry), First Act Discovery (Plastic)
    Concert - Luna (Spruce top)
    Tenor - Outdoor Ukulele (Composite Polycarbonate), Mainland (Mahogany)

  3. #13
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    Mar 2014
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    Perth, Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by robinboyd View Post
    I quite like Mele ukuleles (http://meleukulele.com/). They are around that price range.
    Yeah, another one that I've discovered online recently. I like the look of their solid mango models.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rakelele View Post
    I like both Pono and KoAloha Opio very much. In the soprano size, I'd probably go for the Opio, but have the friction tuners changed for Gotoh UPT Planetary tuners that look the same, but are much easier to use. Pono's strength, in my opion, are their bigger sizes. The Opio will bring you very close to KoAloha's Hawaiian instruments, both in terms of sound as well as in craftsmanship and playability.

    You will get he most professional quality control and set up from Hawaii Music Supply (The Ukulele Site). They will also change the tuners for a small upcharge. The only downside is their relatively long inspection period of about two weeks.
    Thanks for your comments. I'd love to get a HMS uke. I'm a pretty impatient person though The Opio is one that appeals to me though.

  5. #15
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    Mar 2014
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    Perth, Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by kkimura View Post
    I'm partial to the Martin S1. Rather plain compared to most other ukuleles but they play very well.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=BDBdICqQ_D0
    Quote Originally Posted by Pukulele Pete View Post
    Any Martin soprano , vintage is best .
    I'd love to get a decent Martin. They are pretty rare relatively speaking in Australia so anything vintage that's decent seems to go for quite a bit.

  6. #16
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    Mar 2014
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    Perth, Australia
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    Quote Originally Posted by actadh View Post
    I have the sapele Opio with Living Water Strings and the maple Brueko with Worth Brown strings. I have no problem with the friction tuners with either of them.

    They are among my top three played sopranos. The other one would be the Martin OXK with Martin strings, which you might want to consider, too.

    I would give the edge to the Opio for overall sound/playability/quality as it seems to be the Coca Cola of ukes. It goes well with any song genre, with strumming and fingerpicking, with playing at the nut and playing up the neck, and can be played softly or loudly (VERY loudly). I think it edges out the other two for sound tone/quality/timber, but that might be because of the three it has a bigger lower bout.
    Another tick for the Opio. Great feedback. Cheers!

  7. #17
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    Another plug for Mele. I have a pineapple of theirs (koa top, mahogany back and sides - paid about $200 shipped for a used one) -

    My first ukulele was a rather distressed Martin SO/S1 - the plain model - from about 1934. I paid about $200 for it and have done some refurbishing and it has become a great player rather than being a collector item.

    Look for a used Kamaka also - I love mine, again beat up, but cost me about $200 and it is a joy to play.

    You might try Mainland for great instruments and their stock has woods way beyond mahogany.

    If you get a chance then play whatever you can find out there. Remember the strings make a difference!

    Lots to look at
    Martin SO c. 1934
    Martin OXK
    Kamaka pineapple gold label
    Mele pineapple - koa and mahogany
    Bruko concert - cedar and rosewood
    Mele, Braddah tenor
    Mainland tenor, mahogany
    Slingerland banjolele Maybell c. 1924
    Gibson tenor Jr banjo strung as baritone

  8. #18
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    Jan 2016
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    Quote Originally Posted by raffrox View Post
    Yeah, another one that I've discovered online recently. I like the look of their solid mango models.
    Would you believe I own a solid mango concert? It has a very bright sound compared to their mahogany and koa models. I really liked it because it looked and sounded quite different to the other ukes I owned. Oh, and don't be afraid to change the strings if you get one. I've decided I don't like the nylon strings that it came with, but it sounds great with Aquila Reds.
    Last edited by robinboyd; 09-11-2017 at 11:52 AM. Reason: added information

  9. #19
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    Mar 2014
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    Quote Originally Posted by frianm View Post
    Another plug for Mele. I have a pineapple of theirs (koa top, mahogany back and sides - paid about $200 shipped for a used one) -

    My first ukulele was a rather distressed Martin SO/S1 - the plain model - from about 1934. I paid about $200 for it and have done some refurbishing and it has become a great player rather than being a collector item.

    Look for a used Kamaka also - I love mine, again beat up, but cost me about $200 and it is a joy to play.

    You might try Mainland for great instruments and their stock has woods way beyond mahogany.

    If you get a chance then play whatever you can find out there. Remember the strings make a difference!

    Lots to look at
    I love the idea of getting a player Martin. Hard to come by in Australia but that sounds like a great idea. Cheers for the Mele feedback as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by robinboyd View Post
    Would you believe I own a solid mango concert? It has a very bright sound compared to their mahogany and koa models. I really liked it because it looked and sounded quite different to the other ukes I owned. Oh, and don't be afraid to change the strings if you get one. I've decided I don't like the nylon strings that it came with, but it sounds great with Aquila Reds.
    Cheers robinboyd. Your feedback were some of the reasons why a mango wood uke appealed. Another fan of Aqulia Reds here as well depending on the uke.

    So I've narrowed it down to :
    A 'player' Martin
    Mele mango wood Soprano
    KoAloha Opio Soprano
    or may be a Bruko.

    I've just got to explain it to the wife now


    Thanks for all the feedback people. Reaffirmed some of my thoughts and gave me more choices (headaches ).

  10. #20
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    Jan 2016
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    Sounds like you've narrowed it down to a bunch of good choices. There is no wrong answer there.

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