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View Full Version : Newbie looking for a baritone ukulele ... I think.



DanielWS
01-09-2016, 02:45 AM
I've had 6 string guitars forever. Thought I'd try something with 4 strings for a little variety.

My thoughts have been going back and forth from baritone ukulele to tenor guitar. (Not to offend anyone but some tenor guitars are a bit too twangy to my ear.) I would string either as DGBE with the thought that I'd already know a lot about chords from playing the guitar. Does this make sense?

I know absolutely nothing about ukulele manufacturers so I need some guidance on which ones to look at.

For my first one I'd like to stay within a budget of around $300. Is that reasonable?

Which baritone ukuleles do you suggest? For a first ukulele should I even get a baritone or should I get another size? Should I get something new or go with used? If I go with used can I get something better at that price than if I bought new?

Thanks!

DownUpDave
01-09-2016, 04:19 AM
I own soprano, concert, tenor, baritone and a Blueridge tenor guitar so I will give you my opinion for what it is worth.

If you own and play steel string acoustic guitar then pass on the tenor guitar. It is too close to what you already own. I love mine because it is so different sounding than nylon strung ukuleles.

The choice of a baritone would seem logical from an easier size transistion and the tuning is the same but not all chord shapes will be the same because of 4 strings vs 6 strings

Tenor ukulele are a good size to take up from a guitar. They are not too small but it does have a ukulele sound, is small enough to be portable and fun. That is what a uke is all about, baritone gets serious for me, too much like work.

$300 will get you a new good quality all solid wood tenor uke. Buying used will save you 20%-40% so that is something to consider. As always see if you can play a few different sizes at a music store. You might fall in love with the small soprano......lots of people have.

PhilUSAFRet
01-09-2016, 04:57 AM
A bari might be a good start and you can always get strings to tune it GCEA. Lots of ideas online. Google search "ukulele for guitar players"

strumsilly
01-09-2016, 05:18 AM
A bari might be a good start and you can always get strings to tune it GCEA. Lots of ideas online. Google search "ukulele for guitar players"I have this bari for sale in the marketplace, it is already tuned GCEA with Southcoast linear strings. It sounds and plays great. Also have an Islander tenor AT-4 i would sell.PM me if interested. I have too many ukes!
http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?109792-FS-Ohana-roundback-spruce-top-cutaway-baritone

Patrick Madsen
01-09-2016, 05:22 AM
Yep Baritone for sure or a tenor with low G. Since you've played guitar forever it would pay to get a good quality one. One of my all time favorite bari. is a vintage Favilla. They can be had for 350-450.00. Main thing is to ensure any instrument has a good setup.

I've played guitar for 56 years. Since starting a uke, i rarely play my guitars anymore.

Booli
01-09-2016, 05:23 AM
I own soprano, concert, tenor, baritone and a Blueridge tenor guitar so I will give you my opinion for what it is worth.

If you own and play steel string acoustic guitar then pass on the tenor guitar. It is too close to what you already own. I love mine because it is so different sounding than nylon strung ukuleles.

The choice of a baritone would seem logical from an easier size transistion and the tuning is the same but not all chord shapes will be the same because of 4 strings vs 6 strings

Tenor ukulele are a good size to take up from a guitar. They are not too small but it does have a ukulele sound, is small enough to be portable and fun. That is what a uke is all about, baritone gets serious for me, too much like work.

$300 will get you a new good quality all solid wood tenor uke. Buying used will save you 20%-40% so that is something to consider. As always see if you can play a few different sizes at a music store. You might fall in love with the small soprano......lots of people have.


A bari might be a good start and you can always get strings to tune it GCEA. Lots of ideas online. Google search "ukulele for guitar players"

Great wisdom and advice here. ^^^

I doubt I could have said it better or more concise myself.

Many of us on this forum come from a guitar playing background.

The only thing I would add is when you to go to a music store and try a tenor ukulele and baritone ukulele, in your own hand, try different brands in each size if possible, as different manufacturers will have both a different sound as well as different feel.

Don't just spend 10 mins with each, but try them back and forth a few times between each size, and use the guitar chord shapes you already know (minus the 2 bass strings) and you will see which one is the best fit and has the sound you like. That way you know what you are getting in to before committing your cash to anything.

Lots of folks that come to nylon strings from steel strings, i.e., acoustic or electric guitars say that the sound is muted or softer, and relative to steel strings that may be true, but there are over 2 dozen string makers for ukulele, each with many different choices of materials and string gauges, and using different strings will make MORE of a difference in the sound and feel on ukulele than on a steel string acoustic or electric guitar, so dont be put off if the sound is not exactly the same as your guitar, you can get a new set of strings of different material (fluorocarbon, nylon, nylgut and others) and in MANY different gauges for ~$5 and the same strings will sound different on different makes and models of ukulele, and that is part of the quest of getting the perfect sound that YOU like on the instrument in your possession.

kypfer
01-09-2016, 05:28 AM
I play guitar, six-string, 12-string, acoustic, electric and nylon-strung ... my baritone ukulele is "different" as I have it strung in 5th's. It "plays" differently enough and sounds different enough to justify it's existence, even against a nylon-strung acoustic guitar.

However, if knowing what I know now, I was to start looking for a ukulele to play "as a ukulele", I'd get a tenor tuned in "high-G". Having played a guitar for around 50 years I've got the span and dexterity (and big enough hands) to find a soprano or even a concert a little cramped, but a tenor is still small enough to "feel" like a ukulele whilst not being limiting in any way.

I do have several sopranos and a concert and a banjolele. They all have a space in my life and I'd need a convincing argument to want to get rid of any of them, but if "the devil came a-knocking" the sopranos would probably go first ;)

As always, it's a very personal thing and YMMV ... but enjoy the journey :)

DanielWS
01-09-2016, 01:33 PM
Ohana Baritone BK-70RB should be here in about a week or so. :D

Doug W
01-09-2016, 04:16 PM
Congratulations

DanielWS
01-10-2016, 07:46 AM
I am the best ukulele player on my block!

I like your signature line.

I'll soon be able to say, "I'm the best ukulele player on my road!" unless the other house on my 1 mile long road has a ukulele player. :)

blodzoom
01-11-2016, 10:22 AM
I think you should push your budget a bit and buy this one so that I can stop looking at it:

http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/size/baritone/pono-mgb-mango-baritone-1014.html