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Thread: Vintage Soprano: Kamaka vs Martin Style 0

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    BC, Canada
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    Question Vintage Soprano: Kamaka vs Martin Style 0

    I'm in the market for a uke. I was looking at the new ones but I think a vintage soprano would be cool. What are your thoughs on Kamaka vs Martin Style 0?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Portland OR, The Rose (and Uke) City
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    They are both marvelous instruments. The each have a unique sound that has to do with many factors, and they have a different visual aesthetic. You would do well to search and also try and play them if you have an opportunity to see for yourself.


    My Soprano Empire:
    VINTAGE MARTINS: c.'48 Martin 0; '50s 1M
    OTHER VINTAGE: c30s Blue Favilla, c50 TV Pal, 30s Redhead
    MODERN MARTINS: OXK; 2012 2M
    KAMAKA: 2010 Pineapple (RIP MGM)

    My Baritone Empire:
    '12 Kala KA-B, '69 Silvertone, c.'53-57 Favilla, c.'63 Martin, '11 Kamaka

    STRUMTESTS//ADD to The STRING DATABASE and UKE CASE DATABASE // Take the NAME THAT MARTIN test.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    1,095

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    When talking about vintage instruments only. Kamaka can be hit or miss. They changed their design over the years and sad to say many have come apart because of inferior construction. Most of the time they can sound really good but the intonation is not always spot on.

    Vintage Martin O's on the other hand, have always had an excellent reputation that is well deserved. They are consistent in construction, looks and quality of sound. They usually cost more than Kamakas but are well worth it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackBearUkes View Post
    When talking about vintage instruments only. Kamaka can be hit or miss. They changed their design over the years and sad to say many have come apart because of inferior construction. Most of the time they can sound really good but the intonation is not always spot on.

    Vintage Martin O's on the other hand, have always had an excellent reputation that is well deserved. They are consistent in construction, looks and quality of sound. They usually cost more than Kamakas but are well worth it.
    I have a vintage Martin O and it's incredible. I'm not a huge Kamaka fan, but if the soprano was a pineapple....class of their own.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Portland OR, The Rose (and Uke) City
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlackBearUkes View Post
    When talking about vintage instruments only. Kamaka can be hit or miss. They changed their design over the years and sad to say many have come apart because of inferior construction. Most of the time they can sound really good but the intonation is not always spot on.

    Vintage Martin O's on the other hand, have always had an excellent reputation that is well deserved. They are consistent in construction, looks and quality of sound. They usually cost more than Kamakas but are well worth it.
    Yes, I agree with this--vintage Kamakas can be hit or miss, but I've never met a vintage Martin I did not like.


    My Soprano Empire:
    VINTAGE MARTINS: c.'48 Martin 0; '50s 1M
    OTHER VINTAGE: c30s Blue Favilla, c50 TV Pal, 30s Redhead
    MODERN MARTINS: OXK; 2012 2M
    KAMAKA: 2010 Pineapple (RIP MGM)

    My Baritone Empire:
    '12 Kala KA-B, '69 Silvertone, c.'53-57 Favilla, c.'63 Martin, '11 Kamaka

    STRUMTESTS//ADD to The STRING DATABASE and UKE CASE DATABASE // Take the NAME THAT MARTIN test.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Portland OR, The Rose (and Uke) City
    Posts
    2,623

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PhilUSAFRet View Post
    I have a vintage Martin O and it's incredible. I'm not a huge Kamaka fan, but if the soprano was a pineapple....class of their own.

    Yes, I'm with you Phil: I prefer Martin, but I love Kamaka pineapples, new or old.


    My Soprano Empire:
    VINTAGE MARTINS: c.'48 Martin 0; '50s 1M
    OTHER VINTAGE: c30s Blue Favilla, c50 TV Pal, 30s Redhead
    MODERN MARTINS: OXK; 2012 2M
    KAMAKA: 2010 Pineapple (RIP MGM)

    My Baritone Empire:
    '12 Kala KA-B, '69 Silvertone, c.'53-57 Favilla, c.'63 Martin, '11 Kamaka

    STRUMTESTS//ADD to The STRING DATABASE and UKE CASE DATABASE // Take the NAME THAT MARTIN test.

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