PDA

View Full Version : Baritone ukulele makers whats hot?



Derecola
11-12-2015, 03:10 PM
looking at Kamaka hf-4 then was wondering what you Baritone guys think of it,and what makes and models are the wanted instruments?

Ukulele Eddie
11-12-2015, 04:16 PM
HMS has an HF-4 Deluxe (and "regular" HF-4) that is both gorgeous looking and sounding. Check out Kalei's sound sample on the HMS site. Lovely!

If you're willing to wait for a custom, you might a Kinnard baritone. They are something special (and yes, I'm having one built).

Let us know what you end up with!

mds725
11-12-2015, 05:57 PM
I have a Kamaka HF-4 and I love it. It has a nice rich sound and is really fun to play. I don't have a Kinnard baritone, although I communicated with Kevin about baritones before John Kinnard built his first one, and I got to play that first one not long after it was built. I liked it so much I asked John to build me a tenor guitar.

mm stan
11-12-2015, 06:37 PM
Baritones have a great rich tone and depth. Volume is great to hear the notes very well when playing
This is how i learned to tune by ear, and first play songs before switching over to the tenor, concert and
Soprano ukes. Yup i play it first on my baritone
Ive probally have most of the big names in baritones, they all sound different and feel different
Kamaka, kanilea, martin, gibson etc.. then i have my simple rogue baritone, cheap simple sound
With the tone i prefer, what im saying is... buy with your ears and fingers rather than names brands
Choose what pleases you personally... not what others perceive as good to them.
This applies to all ukes, and even then each individual uke built by a manufacturer or luthier will
Sound and feel different due the building process and materials. Like humans, ukes voices are all different.
Good luck and choose wisely, take your time and control your impulse when browsing, looks are just that.

Rakelele
11-12-2015, 07:34 PM
Pono makes nice Baritones.

mds725
11-12-2015, 08:17 PM
From my own experience: faves were made by david ingalls (Ono ukuleles) and Duane Heilman (Black Bear ukuleles).

Vintage Favilla and Giannini are awesome too.

currently I own a Mahalo UK320B which cost 100 bucks and feels and plays like a million.

I have a Black Bear tenor guitar that is very well made and sounds great, and on Mountain Goat's recommendation, I have an Ono baritone coming.

Kimosabe
11-12-2015, 09:26 PM
I went into Dan's Guitars in Honolulu and was trying out baritones. I played a Kamaka and then picked up this heavy one that was used. they had never heard of it, nor had I but we all liked the tone, and loud and better than the Kamaka. I bought it. A Giannini.
Then I looked up Giannini on the internet. I love it. Just had Kilin Reece put new tuners on it.

I also am found of the Kanilea sound. They make nice baritones.

we tigers
11-12-2015, 09:53 PM
Pono makes nice Baritones.
Yep. I have a Pono Nui on it's way. Can't wait!

Booli
11-13-2015, 03:25 AM
I have a Makala MK-B, which I bought new, is considered a cheapo, but it plays sweet, needed no setup, intonation is spot on out of the box, and even has a truss rod and paid only $83. It is tuned re-entrant CFAD.

I also have a Lanikai LU-21B, which I got used, also considered 'entry-level' but has also an impossibly sweet and deep tone, plays like a dream, intonation is very good, and is tuned linear DGBE.

Having these two has reduced any lust I might have for more expensive baritones. I am very satisfied. (I also play and own several concerts and tenors)...

One day I would like to try a vintage Vega Arthur Godfrey bari model, but have never played one, so if it sounds/plays bad, then this might be just a passing fancy based upon the historical significance of this instrument.

There's always tons of love here on the forum for Pono baritones, but I don't recall anything remarkable other than that for maybe the past year at least.

Nickie
11-13-2015, 04:35 AM
My very first uke was a really cheap used bari. I couldn't play it, couldn't reach the chords, so I gave it to a buddy who could play it.
I was given, in turn, a very nice but cheap (on eBay all day long for about 150) solid hog Harmony bari made in the 50s. I can't play it either, so I gave it to Tammy. We had to replace the tuners, and now it sounds nice.
Seems like baris are easier to find a good one inexpensively than the other sizes???

we tigers
11-13-2015, 04:51 AM
The smaller the uke gets, the harder it is to make a good sounding instrument.

Tube
11-13-2015, 09:21 AM
I heared this and fell in love to a wooden artefact...
https://vimeo.com/85748299

wayfarer75
11-13-2015, 09:36 AM
I heared this and fell in love to a wooden artefact...
https://vimeo.com/85748299

That is lovely. I also like this recording: https://vimeo.com/132019315

Derecola
11-13-2015, 11:55 AM
Yep. I have a Pono Nui on it's way. Can't wait!

The Pono nui bu-10 looks tasty.

good_uke_boy
11-13-2015, 01:35 PM
My Boat Paddle baritone, adirondack spruce over walnut, is the best I've played. I bought it after listening to this:
https://youtu.be/F5vanzPKHbs

earljam
11-13-2015, 03:16 PM
I have a Makala MK-B, which I bought new, is considered a cheapo, but it plays sweet, needed no setup, intonation is spot on out of the box, and even has a truss rod and paid only $83. It is tuned re-entrant CFAD.

I also have a Lanikai LU-21B, which I got used, also considered 'entry-level' but has also an impossibly sweet and deep tone, plays like a dream, intonation is very good, and is tuned linear DGBE.

Having these two has reduced any lust I might have for more expensive baritones. I am very satisfied. (I also play and own several concerts and tenors)...

One day I would like to try a vintage Vega Arthur Godfrey bari model, but have never played one, so if it sounds/plays bad, then this might be just a passing fancy based upon the historical significance of this instrument.

There's always tons of love here on the forum for Pono baritones, but I don't recall anything remarkable other than that for maybe the past year at least.

I found for $100 + tax at a local flea market. Mid 50s, solid mahogany. Sounds killer.

Patrick Madsen
11-13-2015, 07:13 PM
Webber Baritone, Bear Claw Sitka Spruce top with Koa back and sides. Incredibly light with a wonderful deep guitar sound.

igorthebarbarian
11-13-2015, 07:52 PM
I have a vintage 70's Giannini baritone (laminate I believe) that I like. It's just kind of heavy. I would like something lighter

kissing
11-14-2015, 02:05 AM
I have a Makala MK-B, which I bought new, is considered a cheapo, but it plays sweet, needed no setup, intonation is spot on out of the box, and even has a truss rod and paid only $83. It is tuned re-entrant CFAD.

Makala MK-B has a truss rod?

Rodney.
11-14-2015, 02:55 AM
Makala MK-B has a truss rod?

Mine didn't. So I am curious to.

Booli
11-14-2015, 05:05 AM
Makala MK-B has a truss rod?


Mine didn't. So I am curious to.

Yes, oddly enough, mine does. I was pleasantly surprised because this was not in the description on the vendors web site.

I got it from Austin Bazaar online. I've noticed that this vendor has certain models from Kala and Oscar Schmidt that differ ever so slightly from the equivalent model sold elsewhere.

I just now took some photos (below) to show what it looks like.

I thought it was odd too for their budget line to have a truss rod. I have not had to adjust it at all yet.

Maybe it was a one-off?

http://i.imgur.com/yPwiSkl.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/dQVhXUZ.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/uD1tE9l.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/B1LU6sE.jpg

I just changed the strings this morning and it is now tuned re-entrant DGBE with Worth Browns (BF) strings and a Thomastik-Infeld CF27 chrome flatwound classical guitar string for a wound 3rd.

The unwound 3rd from the Worth set (0.0319) was way too floppy for me with only about 8lbs of tension (and this is their heaviest gauge set of strings), so I went with my go-to for wounds, the T-I chrome flatwound, which has about 13lbs (corrected from 11lbs) of tension, and is nearly squeakless and does not file the fingernails off on my strumming hand like normal roundwound strings always do.

strumsilly
11-14-2015, 05:24 AM
I have a Makala MK-B, which I bought new, is considered a cheapo, but it plays sweet, needed no setup, intonation is spot on out of the box, and even has a truss rod and paid only $83. It is tuned re-entrant CFAD.

I also have a Lanikai LU-21B, which I got used, also considered 'entry-level' but has also an impossibly sweet and deep tone, plays like a dream, intonation is very good, and is tuned linear DGBE.

Having these two has reduced any lust I might have for more expensive baritones. I am very satisfied. (I also play and own several concerts and tenors)...

One day I would like to try a vintage Vega Arthur Godfrey bari model, but have never played one, so if it sounds/plays bad, then this might be just a passing fancy based upon the historical significance of this instrument.

There's always tons of love here on the forum for Pono baritones, but I don't recall anything remarkable other than that for maybe the past year at least.
I have had 2 AG and in a vintage I think the Favilla is a better sounding uke and am especially fond of the older 19" scale [pre paper label] I like them so much I bought 3, but that is kind of crazy to have 3 of the exact same uke, so I've sold 2. Of course, in mahogany vintage, Gibson and MARTIN HAVE MADE SOME FINE ONES. tHEY ARE A LITTLE SPENDIER though. In HI koa, you really can't go too wrong with a Kamaka, Koaloha, Kanilea , etc. they are pricey though. I think the older all koa Kamakas are really cool and I would like to try one eventually.

kissing
11-14-2015, 03:22 PM
Wow booli, I was ever so skeptical, but seeing is believing!

Why on earth does the humble Makala baritone, the cheapest of the cheap.. have an adjustable truss rod?

My mind is blown! I need answers!
Captain help!

Booli
11-14-2015, 03:42 PM
Wow booli, I was ever so skeptical, but seeing is believing!

Why on earth does the humble Makala baritone, the cheapest of the cheap.. have an adjustable truss rod?

My mind is blown! I need answers!
Captain help!

I dunno. Maybe the body/neck was actually one of the higher end models on the assembly line in the asian factory where Kala gets these made and they put the wrong tuners and label on it and it got sold to the distributor as an MK-B. The SOUND and FEEL of it far exceeded my expectations of what I thought it was. I mean the way this body resonates is like that of a uke far beyond this price range. Once the new strings settle I can put up a video demo for a sound sample.

Maybe they had some extra necks premade for the higher end models with the truss rod already installed, but ran out of the standard neck used for the MK-B and they just slapped it together with the rest of the MK-B parts in order to meet a quota or a deadline?

But, I'm telling you that the note clarity and resonance of this, at least to my ear is similar to more expensive baritone ukes that I've played.

Maybe I just got darn lucky for once?

Jeffelele
11-14-2015, 07:21 PM
A uke and a mystery.

Nice.

Jeff

Rtnrlfy
11-15-2015, 04:12 AM
I was reading this thread last night whilst away from home, and was curious to see if my Makala MK-B has a truss rod or not... And lo and behold it does. I _think_ I ordered it from Austin Bazaar as well. I've been really happy with it - I'm getting a Pono baritone but this one is by no means exiting my regular uke rotation!

85335

Rodney.
11-15-2015, 04:45 AM
What's with all these truss rods popping up inside Makala MK-B's?
It is the ultimate answer to the question the TS asked: hot in baritone country are Makalas with truss rods.

Booli
11-15-2015, 04:56 AM
What's with all these truss rods popping up inside Makala MK-B's?
It is the ultimate answer to the question the TS asked: hot in baritone country are Makalas with truss rods.


:biglaugh:LOL yes. Unexpected, I'm sure.

JonThysell
11-16-2015, 07:03 PM
What's with all these truss rods popping up inside Makala MK-B's?
It is the ultimate answer to the question the TS asked: hot in baritone country are Makalas with truss rods.

I've been to stores that carry one-off prototypes of Kala models that never made it to regular production, or got changed before they did based on feedback.

igorthebarbarian
11-24-2015, 07:58 PM
How was the action/set-up on these Makala MK-B's from Austin Bazaar? They sound like they're quite decent for the sub-$100 price. I could use a 2nd baritone for alternate tuning.

Booli
11-25-2015, 12:17 PM
How was the action/set-up on these Makala MK-B's from Austin Bazaar? They sound like they're quite decent for the sub-$100 price. I could use a 2nd baritone for alternate tuning.

I hope that I'm not putting too fine a point on this, but the details I included in my previous posts might be useful to answer your question. Quoted below for your convenience...

Also, since these posts below in ^this^ thread, I've also had this same uke tuned in fifths, both CGDA and GDAE as per my post in this other thread, which includes what strings I used to achieve these results:

http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?108517-Tuning-ukes-in-fifths&p=1779628#post1779628


I have a Makala MK-B, which I bought new, is considered a cheapo, but it plays sweet, needed no setup, intonation is spot on out of the box, and even has a truss rod and paid only $83. It is tuned re-entrant CFAD...


Yes, oddly enough, mine does (HAVE A TRUSS ROD). I was pleasantly surprised because this was not in the description on the vendors web site.

I got it from Austin Bazaar online. I've noticed that this vendor has certain models from Kala and Oscar Schmidt that differ ever so slightly from the equivalent model sold elsewhere.

I just now took some photos (below) to show what it looks like.

I thought it was odd too for their budget line to have a truss rod. I have not had to adjust it at all yet.

Maybe it was a one-off?

http://i.imgur.com/yPwiSkl.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/dQVhXUZ.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/uD1tE9l.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/B1LU6sE.jpg

I just changed the strings this morning and it is now tuned re-entrant DGBE with Worth Browns (BF) strings and a Thomastik-Infeld CF27 chrome flatwound classical guitar string for a wound 3rd.

The unwound 3rd from the Worth set (0.0319) was way too floppy for me with only about 8lbs of tension (and this is their heaviest gauge set of strings), so I went with my go-to for wounds, the T-I chrome flatwound, which has about 13lbs (corrected from 11lbs) of tension, and is nearly squeakless and does not file the fingernails off on my strumming hand like normal roundwound strings always do.


... The SOUND and FEEL of it far exceeded my expectations of what I thought it was. I mean the way this body resonates is like that of a uke far beyond this price range...