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Thread: Looking To Buy a New Baritone.. need input

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Maysville, Kentucky "on the banks of the Ohio"
    Posts
    200

    Default Looking To Buy a New Baritone.. need input

    Howdy Folks,
    I'm looking to buy a new Baritone and thought I'd ask for input from UU.
    I've narrowed my search down to 3.

    Ohana BK-70 (I'm looking for one with electonics, I would have to add a pickup to this one, but it's sure is a pretty one)

    Luna Zebra Wood (has pickup)

    Oscar Schmidt 55e (has pickup)

    What's your take ?
    Nelson Hopwood
    bassman on the banks of the ohio
    http://wooville.0catch.com


    Lanikai LCD-C Designer Series Concert, Mainland Red Cedar Tenor, Kala Chocolate Dolphin, Ohana BK-20 Baritone, and vintage 50's model Harmony Baritone.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Upper Hale, Surrey/Hants border, UK.
    Posts
    3,928

    Default

    I have two, one is a Kala cedar top, fabulous tone, the other is a Lani spruce top, which surprised me with its good quality sound too, as it was much cheaper.
    Going by my experiences, & what I've read on here, I don't think there is a bad bari out there,
    Ohana certainly make good ukes, (I have 3 of their solid mahogany).
    (I have no experience of Luna or Oscar Schmidt ukes.)
    Long Neck = Kala KA-SLNG - Ohana SK30M - Ohana SK30L - Ohana CK35L
    Electric = Mahalo 'Surfboard' concert - RISA Solid/Stick concert - RISA Uke Ellie tenor - RISA Solid/Stick tenor
    Concert = Baton Rouge Hotrod - Baton Rouge Sun thinline cutaway - Kala KA-CEME - Kala KA-ASAC
    Tenor = Kala KA-T (fitted with classical guitar strings DGBE)
    Baritone = Lani solid Spruce top - Kala solid Cedar top

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    FL, USA
    Posts
    356

    Default

    Personally, if I had to have a pickup, I'd get one without, and have it added as unobtrusively as possible. I find the look of instruments that have a part of the rib section cut out for their electronics to be very aesthetically unappealing. I don't know it that's the case with any of those, but that's just my opinion. Also, a solid soundboard (at very least) would be essential. Preferably all solid woods, though.

    bratsche
    A bunch of stringed instruments tuned in fifths. And a bunch of cats!


    "There are two refuges from the miseries of life: music and cats." - Albert Schweitzer

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Nor Cal USA
    Posts
    1,100

    Default

    I'd recommend a Caramel CB-103 Zebra wood Glossy Acoustic electric. They come with a Truss rod now and they are only~$90. Amazon shows them out of stock now but they should be back soon. Check you tube out there are several reviews of them. I got mine Jan '16 and love it. The CB-500 rosewood one is very nice too. my neighbor has one and it is a canon. A little weird looking but really nice.

    The OS I've checked out at my local shop didn't hold a candle to my CB-103 and the Kala's are as nice but 3X as costly.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    MARTIN-sville Indiana
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    Default

    I have owned an Ohana and played an Oscar Schmidt. Of those two I would get the Ohana without a second thought. It felt lighter and better put together. (No experience with Luna)

    That said, if I were getting another baritone I would get a Cordoba. I just traded one about a month ago because I received my custom LoPrinzi. That Cordoba was almost as good for 1/4 the price. I had the 24B (solid cedar top with spalted maple back and sides) and owned the cedar topped Kala before that. It was nice as well, but IMHO, the Cordoba was easier to play and more responsive. I believe there is a Kala model with electronics on the UU Marketplace right now at a good price. I would get it before any of the three you listed.

    Good luck with your search!
    Main players:

    Soprano: Laughlin 2K | Maui Music Deluxe Mango

    Concert: Collings UC2 | Talsma Style 3 | 16" Ono | Ono Pineapple | Blackbird Clara

    Tenor: Collings UT3SMB

    Baritone: LoPrinzi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Blaine, Washington
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    1,901

    Default

    If it's still available, buy the Giannini for sale.http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/...nnini-baritone.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
    Posts
    11,832

    Default

    Don't overlook the Koloa KU-650 all solid mahogany bari with Southcoast strings....install your own pickup. https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_fro...ulele&_sacat=0

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SiXwYxmU3SY

    That Giannini in the Marketplace a nice deal. That Ohana BK-20 and the Cordoba solid topped bari are first cousins from the same factory. The Cordoba can often be had on ebay at a great price...lower than you could get the Ohana for.
    Last edited by PhilUSAFRet; 10-08-2017 at 01:18 AM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
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    Oop North in England
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    I have a Lani laminate. It came with a pickup and I chose it over the spruce top Lani that Keith (uke1950) got for that reason. I've been very pleased with it and the pickup works fine.

    I don't think Lani must be available the other side of the pond or are under a different brand name. They're East Asian, Indonesia or Phillipines, I think and good value for money. Lower intermediate in price but well made and with good intonation. The other two I had got rehomed as I upgraded.
    Geoff Walker

    I have several ukuleles in various sizes and am not planning on getting any more...

    at least, not yet.

    I also play some blowy things and a squeezy thing

    Internet:
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Posts
    634

    Default

    Two things to consider -

    First, I think a truss rod is a very good thing in a baritone, or some other way to ensure that your neck profile doesn't change over time. Most uke necks are short enough that it isn't a problem, but baritones are borderline. I've used the truss rod in my Pono to resolve neck profile issues and it was well worth it.

    The other thing I've always been intrigued by and never able to pull the trigger on is the clearwater roundback baritone uke - reviewed here - http://www.gotaukulele.com/2016/07/c...-baritone.html These can be a bit hard to find in the US, but sometimes they're available on eBay from "The Really Useful Music Company".
    Blackbird Clara
    Concert Flea
    Pono MB
    Deering Goodtime Banjo Uke (concert)
    Hadean Uke-Bass
    Deering Goodtime Special (5-string banjo - currently with 4 strings...)

    Buckle Up

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Maysville, Kentucky "on the banks of the Ohio"
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    Default

    Thanks to all for your input. I ended up choosing the Ohana BK-70. Be about 3 or 4 weeks before it arrives, but I'll be sure to let you know how that turns out.

    Thanks again!
    Nelson Hopwood
    bassman on the banks of the ohio
    http://wooville.0catch.com


    Lanikai LCD-C Designer Series Concert, Mainland Red Cedar Tenor, Kala Chocolate Dolphin, Ohana BK-20 Baritone, and vintage 50's model Harmony Baritone.

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