PDA

View Full Version : concert or tenor??/



Martynas
03-27-2016, 04:22 AM
Hello im beginner and im going to buy my first ukulele and im thinking which size is better for beginner? also ill send you few links of ukuleles id like to buy so you can offer which one is better
1. http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/price/200-399/pono-ac-acacia-concert.html
2.http://www.southernukulelestore.co.uk/Product/1346/Kala-KA-ASAC-CE-Solid-Acacia-Electro-Acoustic-Concert-Ukulele
3.http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/price/200-399/kala-ka-srmt-tri-limited-edition-all-solid-spruce-rosewood-mango-tenor.html
4.http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/price/200-399/cordoba-30t-solid-mahogany-tenor-package.html
i cant afford more expensive ukes than 400dollars. if you know something else with good price pls put link in comments
:drool::drool::drool:

timmit65
03-27-2016, 04:27 AM
I'll save the better choice for others. Those are all good Uke manufactures.

As far as size goes, the tenor will typically give you a bigger sound. If you plan to travel with it, the concert is easier to travel with.

Good luck!

Soundbored
03-27-2016, 04:32 AM
Hello im beginner and im going to buy my first ukulele and im thinking which size is better for beginner?

You should buy a Standard ("soprano"). You did say you wanted a "ukulele", didn't you? :rolleyes:

Martynas
03-27-2016, 04:33 AM
ha so you dont think its worth to buy those old ukes or its ok? i wont travel with it just practice and play for fun at home. so im asking which is more comfortable and better for beginner

Martynas
03-27-2016, 04:35 AM
what do you guys think about this uke ? http://www.theukulelesite.com/koaloha-opio-concert-ukulele-package.html
or should i first buy 50 euros uke just to check how it works and after year buy a better one?

kissing
03-27-2016, 04:38 AM
You have been making a LOT of posts lately, asking the same questions over and over, constantly doubting yourself.
Make up your own mind. Stop asking people to tell you what to do!

There's no objectively "better" ukulele. You need to choose for yourself what you like.
If you ask 1000 people, you will get 1000 unique answers. There's no right answer.

Is concert or tenor better for beginner?
There's no answer to that. A beginner can begin with any size ukulele.

Should you buy a cheap ukulele first? Or go straight for a higher quality one?

Well what do you think? You buy a cheap ukulele, you will get cheap quality. It may be good enough to 'test' what an ukulele is like, but it will be nowhere as good as a $400 one. What are the pros and cons of that? For goodness sake, think about it.


What would I buy if I had $400?
I would get this:
http://www.theukulelesite.com/pono-mt-mahogany-tenor.html

But not because it's the ultimate choice that everyone should pick. But because I personally like the features of this uke:

-All solid mahogany giving a rich, deep tone
-Impressed with Pono's products
-Adjustable truss rod is nifty (but not compulsory) feature in my opinion
-Sound sample video is great!
-The Ukulele Site will do a setup for optimal playing.
-I like tenors.
-The description on the website says they reckon it's one of the best sounding ukuleles for that price. I agree with them.

Ukulelerick9255
03-27-2016, 04:58 AM
Here's a novel idea go to a store and play both sizes and see which you like better.

EmmaQ
03-27-2016, 05:21 AM
I know what's it's like to go back and forth, back and forth. My sympathies ��. In my opinion, (and I've been playing for about 3 years now and have played a variety of brands and sizes), the KoAloha Opio and Pono brands are the best in your price range. My first choice would be the KoAloha Opio and second choice would be the Pono MT that Kissing suggested. I once owned the Pono acacia tenor and it was a good ukulele, I think, but I didn't love it's tone. Currently, among other ukuleles, I own the Pono MB- the baritone version of the Pono MT and I love it's deep rich tone.

wayfarer75
03-27-2016, 05:27 AM
Here's a novel idea go to a store and play both sizes and see which you like better.

I agree. What's comfortable for one person is uncomfortable for another. $400 will buy a nice uke, no matter what size.

jollyboy
03-27-2016, 05:41 AM
You have been making a LOT of posts lately, asking the same questions over and over, constantly doubting yourself.
Make up your own mind. Stop asking people to tell you what to do!

There's no objectively "better" ukulele. You need to choose for yourself what you like.
If you ask 1000 people, you will get 1000 unique answers. There's no right answer.


I think this comes across as a little harsh - although perhaps a single thread might have served the OP just as well ;)

Certainly there is no objectively 'better' but if you asked 1000 people I would think it highly unlikely that you would get 1000 unique answers. Much more likely is that you would see some consensus begin to emerge. The OP has had considerable fewer than 1000 responses to his various questions and already there can be seen a lean toward the Pono and Kala brands. Surely that's a valuable function of a forum like this. And I feel that people shouldn't be discouraged from accessing the hive mind :)

Edit: I post from the perspective of someone very familiar with 'pre-significant-purchase-anxiety-syndrome'.

Rllink
03-27-2016, 05:51 AM
I think this comes across as a little harsh - although perhaps a single thread might have served the OP just as well ;)

Certainly there is no objectively 'better' but if you asked 1000 people I would think it highly unlikely that you would get 1000 unique answers. Much more likely is that you would see some consensus begin to emerge. The OP has had considerable fewer than 1000 responses to his various questions and already there can be seen a lean toward the Pono and Kala brands. Surely that's a valuable function of a forum like this. And I feel that people shouldn't be discouraged from accessing the hive mind :)

Edit: I post from the perspective of someone very familiar with 'pre-significant-purchase-anxiety-syndrome'.I kind of agree with Kissing. You aren't going to get an answer here, just a bunch of varied and confusing opinions. Just buy one. Take the leap. Play it for a while, and if it isn't the right one, get another. I wonder how many people actually stick with their first ukulele anyway. Not many.

futboljim
03-27-2016, 06:08 AM
Hello im beginner and im going to buy my first ukulele and im thinking which size is better for beginner? also ill send you few links of ukuleles id like to buy so you can offer which one is better
1. http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/price/200-399/pono-ac-acacia-concert.html
2.http://www.southernukulelestore.co.uk/Product/1346/Kala-KA-ASAC-CE-Solid-Acacia-Electro-Acoustic-Concert-Ukulele
3.http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/price/200-399/kala-ka-srmt-tri-limited-edition-all-solid-spruce-rosewood-mango-tenor.html
4.http://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-by/price/200-399/cordoba-30t-solid-mahogany-tenor-package.html
i cant afford more expensive ukes than 400dollars. if you know something else with good price pls put link in comments
:drool::drool::drool:

First thing I would do is play a couple of each size, if possible. Consider only the size, not the setup, string choice, wood combo, etc... For me, the room on the fingerboard up to the twelfth fret matters. Decide what matters to you for now.

then, pick something reasonably priced up to your limit. You will learn more about what you like and prefer after playing awhile. Take delivery, and learn THE instrument and YOUR instrument. You might have one you can keep forever. You might want to also add others for different nuance in your playing.

I went through this in the guitar world, and was fairly prepare entering the uke world. Five acoustic guitars have come and gone, with four remaining - as I learned. So far, I think I'll keep my first uke purchase, and will definitely keep my second.

Similarity amongst all of those? String spacing and scale work for me, as does the tone and size of the body. May or may not work for others, but those are what matter to me.

Good luck in your search and journey, enjoy!

Joyful Uke
03-27-2016, 06:31 AM
If you can, head to a music store and try some out. But, not everyone lives near a store that carries ukuleles, or a selection of ukuleles. You don't need to be able to actually play to try some out, but can try placing your fingers on the frets and see how it feels. You could probably look up how to play a chord or 2, and take that with you to the store, too, so you have some way to compare what that would be like.

Do you play any other stringed instruments? Have large hands? Small hands? Any hand injuries that you're dealing with, or arthritis? Some of those things might factor into whether you can stretch your fingers far enough for a tenor, or if the closer spacing of a concert might work better.

If you can't decide, you might just want to take a leap, and pick one. You could sell or give away something that doesn't work, but would know more about what you want for a future purchase.

Or, even better, find out if the store takes returns, so you could try it for a couple days, and bring it back, (or ship it back), if you think you made the wrong decision. You'd be out shipping costs, if you have to ship it, but at least you would now have a better idea of what works for you.

It's hard to know what to do when you don't have any solid information for making the decision, so I understand why you're raising the question. We don't want to waste our hard-earned money, and some of us have limited funds to non-essential purchases.

Martynas
03-27-2016, 08:42 AM
thank you guys you really helped me! i decided to buy uke from my local shop for 60 euros its Kala MK-C CONCERT. but when ill be able to play a bit ill buy a uke for 300-400 euros. but there is a few problems with that. i live in europe and if i buy from HMS i have to pay 2.7% for customs and 21% vat. so its 60-80 euros extra. and shipping is 70 euros. and i havent seen decent shop in europe yet. so its worth to pay more to HMS and get good ukulele or its better to try to search for ukulele in europe and pay that 150 euros not for shipping and taxes but for better product?

joneo
03-27-2016, 09:02 AM
Congratulations on your decision! Kala is a good brand. I have two of them. (A long neck soprano and a tenor.)

NatalieS
03-27-2016, 09:49 AM
I think you did the right thing to start with a cheaper ukulele at first. The first thing you need to establish through learning is whether you'll even stick with the ukulele. It's good to figure this out on a fairly inexpensive instrument. My first few ukes almost a decade ago were beginner quality, but onceI decided I really loved playing, I felt confident spending more money on one and by that time I knew that size was comfortable for me. You'll be fine with the Kala. Now, it's time to play play play!

Soundbored
03-27-2016, 09:53 AM
thank you guys you really helped me! i decided to buy uke from my local shop for 60 euros its Kala MK-C CONCERT. but when ill be able to play a bit ill buy a uke for 300-400 euros. but there is a few problems with that. i live in europe and if i buy from HMS i have to pay 2.7% for customs and 21% vat. so its 60-80 euros extra. and shipping is 70 euros. and i havent seen decent shop in europe yet. so its worth to pay more to HMS and get good ukulele or its better to try to search for ukulele in europe and pay that 150 euros not for shipping and taxes but for better product?

To me, the cutoff is ~$200 USD. I don't go below that. My Anuenue and Kala SMHS were $250 and $215, and are both solid, good sounding, well playing mahogany sopranos. I would even say the Kala's sound quality is nearly on par with my $1000 Kiwaya. Surprising, yes.

Martynas
03-27-2016, 10:03 AM
ok but what do you think should i pay 150 euros for shipping and taxes because of setup and good known brand or should i invest that 150 euros to better ukulele but with not that good setup and not that good brand?

Rllink
03-27-2016, 10:23 AM
thank you guys you really helped me! i decided to buy uke from my local shop for 60 euros its Kala MK-C CONCERT. but when ill be able to play a bit ill buy a uke for 300-400 euros. but there is a few problems with that. i live in europe and if i buy from HMS i have to pay 2.7% for customs and 21% vat. so its 60-80 euros extra. and shipping is 70 euros. and i havent seen decent shop in europe yet. so its worth to pay more to HMS and get good ukulele or its better to try to search for ukulele in europe and pay that 150 euros not for shipping and taxes but for better product?That is the ukulele I started out with. I still take it to the beach and play it all the time. Don't let other people spend your money for you.

Kyle23
03-27-2016, 01:01 PM
thank you guys you really helped me! i decided to buy uke from my local shop for 60 euros its Kala MK-C CONCERT. but when ill be able to play a bit ill buy a uke for 300-400 euros. but there is a few problems with that. i live in europe and if i buy from HMS i have to pay 2.7% for customs and 21% vat. so its 60-80 euros extra. and shipping is 70 euros. and i havent seen decent shop in europe yet. so its worth to pay more to HMS and get good ukulele or its better to try to search for ukulele in europe and pay that 150 euros not for shipping and taxes but for better product?

You don't have to buy from HMS. We listed over a dozen sites in the last thread you made with a lot of the same ukes that HMS has. Great brands too.

Django
03-27-2016, 01:22 PM
Coming from a long affair with the guitar and banjo I was sure that my preference would be tenor or concert. I was wrong. My favorite is the soprano. It's lively and compact. I do enjoy my tenor, but most of my time is spent with a soprano. It can be a little crowded, but I can also cover half of the fingerboard at once. I didn't really like the concert. Not as lively as the soprano and less room and sustain than the tenor.

Joyful Uke
03-27-2016, 04:47 PM
"ok but what do you think should i pay 150 euros for shipping and taxes because of setup and good known brand or should i invest that 150 euros to better ukulele but with not that good setup and not that good brand? "

IMO, the setup is very, very important. You could buy a great brand, but if it's not set up well, it will be hard to play, possibly have bad intonation, and other problems. I don't think that you have to buy from HMS to get a good setup, but don't know where you can buy anything in your part of the world.

Someone here probably has some suggestions for you on what would save you the customs fees and expensive shipping, but I think you should make getting a good set up a top priority.

It would be a shame if you didn't enjoy your first ukulele because it wasn't set up well.

kissing
03-27-2016, 05:14 PM
ok but what do you think should i pay 150 euros for shipping and taxes because of setup and good known brand or should i invest that 150 euros to better ukulele but with not that good setup and not that good brand?

I live in Australia, which is probably even more isolated than Europe is when it comes to good vendors like The Ukulele Site.

It is worth it for me, because I know for the same price, I wont find a better ukulele.

Consider spending $600+ on your next big buy from The Ukulele Site, then you get free international shipping from them

kissing
03-27-2016, 05:17 PM
I think this comes across as a little harsh - although perhaps a single thread might have served the OP just as well ;)

Certainly there is no objectively 'better' but if you asked 1000 people I would think it highly unlikely that you would get 1000 unique answers. Much more likely is that you would see some consensus begin to emerge. The OP has had considerable fewer than 1000 responses to his various questions and already there can be seen a lean toward the Pono and Kala brands. Surely that's a valuable function of a forum like this. And I feel that people shouldn't be discouraged from accessing the hive mind :)

Edit: I post from the perspective of someone very familiar with 'pre-significant-purchase-anxiety-syndrome'.

I know what you mean. However it becomes a bit frustrating when you see new topic after topic being started where the OP has seemingly ignored the suggestions and advice given in the previous topics, etc.

One topic should be enough to cover what a reasonable person needs to know from a hive mind, and then some personal reflection away from the keyboard.

Perhaps it is my fault for spending more time on the forum than usual, as I anxiously wait for some ukuleles to arrive

Nickie
03-27-2016, 05:31 PM
I wish I'd had 400 to spend on my 1st uke, I'd probably have kept it....happy hunting, let us know what you get!

Inksplosive AL
03-27-2016, 06:06 PM
I know what you mean. However it becomes a bit frustrating when you see new topic after topic being started where the OP has seemingly ignored the suggestions and advice given in the previous topics, etc.

One topic should be enough to cover what a reasonable person needs to know from a hive mind, and then some personal reflection away from the keyboard.

Perhaps it is my fault for spending more time on the forum than usual, as I anxiously wait for some ukuleles to arrive

You didn't say anything that didn't need to be said and you said it much nicer than I might have, though I do hold back so much here. As a 30 year tattoo artist I have a very thick skin and an impervious ego. I do so try to remember not everyone has worked as close to or even experienced the amount of diversity in people that I have. Much less permanently modified men from Airborne Rangers that served in Vietnam to doctors who head their own practice. Or have to understand biker politics to know what to say to the guy whose tattoo is almost finished when he asks Hey Al did you ever have someone say they were not going to pay you after the tattoo?
:drool:

Don't let the everybody is a victim society and PC police make you think different, question yourself or feel a need to apologize for offering nothing but good advice. Remember sadly in todays world collage students feel pain and need counseling because they no longer feel safe due to a simple political slogan written in water soluble chalk. Though they feel they have the right to slander others while demanding their comfort. :confused:

I'm glad the OP is finally getting something they will enjoy even if its only a jumping board to their next ukulele. As mentioned in another thread we all know there will likely be another.

BTW: Sopranos are best. All the talk about roomier fretboards is perception there really isn't that much difference. There is a big difference in sound and sustain but I'm most certain we mentioned this in another thread.

~peace-love-n-chicken-grease~

The waiting game has us both a bit crazy eh? :cool:

Inksplosive AL
03-27-2016, 06:15 PM
I wish I'd had 400 to spend on my 1st uke, I'd probably have kept it....happy hunting, let us know what you get!

My first and second ukulele was my Smiley and a Bruce Wei tenor both bought the same day. I won the tenor for $18.50 plus shipping which I believe was $60 then. Smiley was $40 and not playable as is but taught me much about setting up a ukulele the way I want it. It is now what I judge all setups by.

My Wei Wei tenor cracked due to my negligence but after a bit of humidity and some glue now rivals only my Koaloha concert in tone. I dont even want to think of the amount of $$$ sunk into ukuleles that are case princesses and hardly get played.

My $85 KA SEM bought from and setup by ukegirl is still my most played ukulele. Even though it was perfectly setup I did still tweak the action a bit lower at the nut myself.

~AL~

Inksplosive AL
03-27-2016, 06:23 PM
Don't be in a hurry to get the next uke, be in a hurry to learn some things about music and playing the uke you already have.

So true. I believe in another thread by the OP I mentioned Uncle Rods Ukulele Boot Camp and even linked to a video on the paper strum to get started before the ukulele even arrives.

I might have 30 ukuleles... more?

I'm an addict maybe a collector and/or a hoarder of ukuleles, tattoo machines and old Honda motorcycles.

~AL~

mds725
03-27-2016, 07:33 PM
.....BTW: Sopranos are best. All the talk about roomier fretboards is perception there really isn't that much difference. There is a big difference in sound and sustain but I'm most certain we mentioned this in another thread.....



When I read or hear sentences like this I always add, in my head "for me" (as if the person who made the statement had said "Sopranos are best FOR ME") because people seldom know what's really best for other people. Especially, with someone I don't know very well, I have no idea what experiences they've had in their loves, or what their tastes are, or really anything that will help me understand why that person thinks something is the best. This sentence only tells me that the person who posted it likes sopranos, and what follows explains only that for hi, there isn't much difference in playability from one fretboard size to another and that, apparently, he prefers the sound and sustain of sopranos. It doesn't really tell me why, though, so I don't have much to go on if I try to apply that statement to myself.

When I first went shopping for an ukulele, I went to a store that had a nice selection, found one tenor (Kala solid acacia) I really liked and one concert (Kala solid mahogany) I liked (based on considerations that were important to me but may or may not be important to anyone else), and played the two of them alternately for three hours. I ended up buying the concert, but I bought the tenor too, sometime later. Keep in mind that my experience only matters to someone else if they know why I picked those two ukuleles to choose from and then why I picked the concert at that time. Even then, my experience only matters if the reason for my decision resonates with someone else.

To the OP: by exposing yourself to as many ukuleles as you can -- in shops, in ukulele groups, and wherever else you have a chance to play an uke you don't already own -- you will eventually develop your own group of likes and dislikes that means something only to you, and from those likes and dislikes you will get closer to finding the "right" uke for you. I hope you like the one you ordered. Be sure to enjoy the journey! Happy strummings!

Peace Train
03-27-2016, 09:28 PM
Or have to understand biker politics to know what to say to the guy whose tattoo is almost finished when he asks Hey Al did you ever have someone say they were not going to pay you after the tattoo?

From someone who just got taken by a shoddy worker who got in over his head and took off before the job was finished, I'd like to hear the answer to that one. (or maybe this is best discussed in a gun forum?) ;)

TheBathBird
03-27-2016, 09:47 PM
ok but what do you think should i pay 150 euros for shipping and taxes because of setup and good known brand or should i invest that 150 euros to better ukulele but with not that good setup and not that good brand?

I think the link to Southern Ukulele Store was posted by somebody earlier in this thread. They sell all the major brands, they are incredibly helpful and honest, they set up every uke, AND they are in Europe.

So there really isn't any need to compromise on setup and brand just because you're in Europe.

Mivo
03-28-2016, 12:10 AM
A few comments, most of them echoing what's been said:

1) You're getting yourself stuck in "analysis paralysis". It happens to me pretty often too, and it's fine. You'll have to make a decision and go through with it to get unstuck. You'll second guess your decision and eventually revisit the other options. You can't know what is right for you unless you experience the options. Stop stressing yourself out over it. Make a list of pros and cons for each option and then pick one.

2) The sizes: I started with a concert, then (because of this forum and how tenor-centric some regulars are, paired with the "bigger is better" thinking society has brainwashed us into), then a soprano, then another tenor (again because of my thinking that if I spend big bucks, I might as well get something that looks expensive), then a LN soprano (much happier with that), then a concert (liked concert scale, wanted fuller sound). For now I feel that the concert size checks the most boxes FOR ME, but that is ME, and I couldn't have arrived at this point without the journey. I had to try the other ukes in order to narrow down and quieten the wondering ("Wouldn't X be better? Would I learn better? Would that give me more potential?" etc - underlying this are both a desire for shortcuts and perfectionism, both of which are tripping stones). But I did buy too fast, and I'll get back to that in a moment.

3) Remember that this is a very US-centric forum, so suggestions for brands and vendors and luthiers are often based on especially the US. Shopping at HMS, Uke Republic, Mim's, etc is good, but it's not necessarily efficient if you're not in the US. it makes no sense to me to buy a €300 ukulele in the US when you have to pay 19-25% VAT, import tax, and €30-100 for shipping. You're cutting your money in half for no reason. Buy something from Guido at ukuMele.de (he has very few instruments, but sets them all up by hand, and he won't sell you crap) or the Southern Ukulele Store, and you'll be fine! No need to look further for what you'll buy (first instrument, relatively inexpensive).

4) Brands: The difference between inexpensive ukuleles isn't huge. Plenty of the €100-300 stuff comes from the same factories, using the same technologies. There will be great sounding instruments and there will be duds, regardless of the brand. QA is frequently shoddy with cheaper stuff, which is why you want a set-up. This changes in higher price regions and you'll have manufacturers that use unique building styles, like KoAloha with their unibraces (affects the sound), Pono with the truss rods, Kanilea with their wider fretboards, etc, but when you get some €200 or €300 uke in Europe (where nearly everything costs more by default), what you'll find is pretty standard regardless of the name. If you go for a specific brand, identify WHY you want that brand. "It's well known" is a sucky reason in that price region.

5) You probably won't get it right, but you can't get it wrong: Rehashing this point once more ... your very first ukulele may not necessarily turn out the One Uke That Rules Them All for you, just like your first girlfriend or boyfriend will not necessarily become your wife or husband (or the wife or husband that you celebrate your 50th anniversary with), though that COULD happen. But every ukulele you play and experience will teach you something and enable you to better formulate what you want and need and desire. Same as with partners. You won't know that toothpaste in the sink triggers you unless you deal with it three times a day. So, you can't actually make the wrong decision. No matter what you do, your preferences will become more refined and more describable.

6) As a beginner, you're incompetent and unable to really judge an instrument that doesn't fall in the "extreme crap" €20-category. Wow, that sounds blunt, so I'll add that this is personal experience and there may well be people who are better at this. But my experience is that starting out even the best ukulele that money can buy would have left me wanting -- because unless you can play a bit, any ukulele will sound like crap. If your fingers aren't used to pressing down strings (and they probably aren't), it'll be uncomfortable no matter how well set up it is. If your fingers get tangled up in the strings when strumming, the problem isn't that the strings are Aquila, or Worth, or Martin, or fishing line, but that you can't strum well yet. And unless you are used to put your fingers individually in small spaces on a regular basis, any ukulele fretboard will seem cramped. What you hear in recordings or videos of expert players will ALWAYS sound better than what you produce as a beginner. It has nothing to do with the instrument (watch Corey of HMS play cheap ukes, for illustration) and everything with you just starting out, and that's fine.

The point here is this: No matter what you buy, especially when you are already so indecisive to start with, you'll probably have a ton of doubts when you get it, so you buy more and more and more, hoping for that magical instrument that somehow changes the world. Now, buying lots of instruments teachers you what you like and don't like, but it's expensive, will confuse you, prevent you from practicing (you'll be busy reading the forum and watching videos, while eating canned food and drinking tap water so you save some money for the next big purchase), but it sidesteps the issue.

If I could go back in time, I would get one well-set up uke (probably a concert, since it is a happy medium FOR ME), and then NOT BUY ANYTHING ELSE for a year, but practice every day, and make weekly notes of: a) what I like, and b) what I don't like. I would revise this frequently, note the changes of perception, shake my head at the contradictions and the circular thinking, and question my sanity, but I would after a year be able to tell pretty concisely what I want, if I even want something else.

Now go and buy a uke! :)

Martynas
03-28-2016, 12:28 AM
wow! thanks if you read my comments i decided to buy makala concert uke for 60 euros. thats where my journey starts!

Croaky Keith
03-28-2016, 12:41 AM
My first uke was a Makala tenor, uncomfortably big for me.

Second uke was a Makala soprano pineapple, a bit too small for me, (my finger tips hadn't had a chance to harden up yet).

So I bought a Makala concert, my fingers were at home on this scale.

But I liked the look of a soprano, so a Kala KA-SLNG was bought, (a concert scale neck on a soprano body).

Then U.A.S. struck! Better quality with built in pick up was next...........& so it goes on. :)

All but the tenor are used at various times, the one I use the most is the SLNG, but that is just me.

All, except my RISA solid, are laminates, & they are all fine playable ukes.

Will I buy a solid wood uke, probably, but I don't need it. ;)

TheBathBird
03-28-2016, 12:42 AM
A few comments, most of them echoing what's been said:

1) You're getting yourself stuck in "analysis paralysis". It happens to me pretty often too, and it's fine. You'll have to make a decision and go through with it to get unstuck. You'll second guess your decision and eventually revisit the other options. You can't know what is right for you unless you experience the options. Stop stressing yourself out over it. Make a list of pros and cons for each option and then pick one.

2) The sizes: I started with a concert, then (because of this forum and how tenor-centric some regulars are, paired with the "bigger is better" thinking society has brainwashed us into), then a soprano, then another tenor (again because of my thinking that if I spend big bucks, I might as well get something that looks expensive), then a LN soprano (much happier with that), then a concert (liked concert scale, wanted fuller sound). For now I feel that the concert size checks the most boxes FOR ME, but that is ME, and I couldn't have arrived at this point without the journey. I had to try the other ukes in order to narrow down and quieten the wondering ("Wouldn't X be better? Would I learn better? Would that give me more potential?" etc - underlying this are both a desire for shortcuts and perfectionism, both of which are tripping stones). But I did buy too fast, and I'll get back to that in a moment.

3) Remember that this is a very US-centric forum, so suggestions for brands and vendors and luthiers are often based on especially the US. Shopping at HMS, Uke Republic, Mim's, etc is good, but it's not necessarily efficient if you're not in the US. it makes no sense to me to buy a €300 ukulele in the US when you have to pay 19-25% VAT, import tax, and €30-100 for shipping. You're cutting your money in half for no reason. Buy something from Guido at ukuMele.de (he has very few instruments, but sets them all up by hand, and he won't sell you crap) or the Southern Ukulele Store, and you'll be fine! No need to look further for what you'll buy (first instrument, relatively inexpensive).

4) Brands: The difference between inexpensive ukuleles isn't huge. Plenty of the €100-300 stuff comes from the same factories, using the same technologies. There will be great sounding instruments and there will be duds, regardless of the brand. QA is frequently shoddy with cheaper stuff, which is why you want a set-up. This changes in higher price regions and you'll have manufacturers that use unique building styles, like KoAloha with their unibraces (affects the sound), Pono with the truss rods, Kanilea with their wider fretboards, etc, but when you get some €200 or €300 uke in Europe (where nearly everything costs more by default), what you'll find is pretty standard regardless of the name. If you go for a specific brand, identify WHY you want that brand. "It's well known" is a sucky reason in that price region.

5) You probably won't get it right, but you can't get it wrong: Rehashing this point once more ... your very first ukulele may not necessarily turn out the One Uke That Rules Them All for you, just like your first girlfriend or boyfriend will not necessarily become your wife or husband (or the wife or husband that you celebrate your 50th anniversary with), though that COULD happen. But every ukulele you play and experience will teach you something and enable you to better formulate what you want and need and desire. Same as with partners. You won't know that toothpaste in the sink triggers you unless you deal with it three times a day. So, you can't actually make the wrong decision. No matter what you do, your preferences will become more refined and more describable.

6) As a beginner, you're incompetent and unable to really judge an instrument that doesn't fall in the "extreme crap" €20-category. Wow, that sounds blunt, so I'll add that this is personal experience and there may well be people who are better at this. But my experience is that starting out even the best ukulele that money can buy would have left me wanting -- because unless you can play a bit, any ukulele will sound like crap. If your fingers aren't used to pressing down strings (and they probably aren't), it'll be uncomfortable no matter how well set up it is. If your fingers get tangled up in the strings when strumming, the problem isn't that the strings are Aquila, or Worth, or Martin, or fishing line, but that you can't strum well yet. And unless you are used to put your fingers individually in small spaces on a regular basis, any ukulele fretboard will seem cramped. What you hear in recordings or videos of expert players will ALWAYS sound better than what you produce as a beginner. It has nothing to do with the instrument (watch Corey of HMS play cheap ukes, for illustration) and everything with you just starting out, and that's fine.

The point here is this: No matter what you buy, especially when you are already so indecisive to start with, you'll probably have a ton of doubts when you get it, so you buy more and more and more, hoping for that magical instrument that somehow changes the world. Now, buying lots of instruments teachers you what you like and don't like, but it's expensive, will confuse you, prevent you from practicing (you'll be busy reading the forum and watching videos, while eating canned food and drinking tap water so you save some money for the next big purchase), but it sidesteps the issue.

If I could go back in time, I would get one well-set up uke (probably a concert, since it is a happy medium FOR ME), and then NOT BUY ANYTHING ELSE for a year, but practice every day, and make weekly notes of: a) what I like, and b) what I don't like. I would revise this frequently, note the changes of perception, shake my head at the contradictions and the circular thinking, and question my sanity, but I would after a year be able to tell pretty concisely what I want, if I even want something else.

Now go and buy a uke! :)

^This!^ Every single word of it :)


wow! thanks if you read my comments i decided to buy makala concert uke for 60 euros. thats where my journey starts!

Congratulations! I think that was a good choice. It seems that many people on this forum started out with a Makala, and even though they have moved on to more expensive ukes they still love their Makalas.

Mivo
03-28-2016, 12:55 AM
wow! thanks if you read my comments i decided to buy makala concert uke for 60 euros. thats where my journey starts!

That sounds good! I hadn't read it before, and I'm glad you broke through that wall and made a decision. Good place to start. :)

Martynas
03-28-2016, 03:18 AM
Will I buy a solid wood uke, probably, but I don't need it. ;)
haha i know that feeling :D

Inksplosive AL
03-28-2016, 03:46 AM
From someone who just got taken by a shoddy worker who got in over his head and took off before the job was finished, I'd like to hear the answer to that one. (or maybe this is best discussed in a gun forum?) ;)

Wow I hate to threadjack and I wasn't going to answer but seriously even if the situation mentioned went bad I would only use my gun for self defense thinking my life in danger, not someone stealing a tattoo or theft of service.

Knowing how to speak to someone who told you at the start of the tattoo if I didn't knock the price down $25 he was just going to spend what he had at the bar and get into a fight. Its a respect thing, a test of your fortitude and how you answer can steer the outcome. I took a minute still tattooing him calmly and chose an answer. I basically said thankfully I never had that situation happen and I didn't know what I would do. He respected my answer and assured me he wasn't thinking of doing such a thing. I have tattooed him his wife and children many times since.

Your situation sounds like you need a lawyer if the guys even got a buck to take back from him.

I never collected instruments searching for the holy grail but knowing that each and every one has a different song inside it. You just have to play it to its soul. That and there are not many 1920's banjoleles out there in great condition!

PS Sopranos are still best! For everyone! That is if the "ukulele sound" is what interested you. :)

Ukejenny
03-28-2016, 04:07 AM
thank you guys you really helped me! i decided to buy uke from my local shop for 60 euros its Kala MK-C CONCERT. but when ill be able to play a bit ill buy a uke for 300-400 euros. but there is a few problems with that. i live in europe and if i buy from HMS i have to pay 2.7% for customs and 21% vat. so its 60-80 euros extra. and shipping is 70 euros. and i havent seen decent shop in europe yet. so its worth to pay more to HMS and get good ukulele or its better to try to search for ukulele in europe and pay that 150 euros not for shipping and taxes but for better product?

I think you made a very good choice and you'll be happy playing that ukulele. I remember how hard it was for me, as a beginner, to find that first ukulele. Shopping gets easier once you find some good sources. I hope you can find some good sellers where you live. I have done most of my shopping online and have had good luck. Enjoy that nice ukulele!!!

Martynas
03-28-2016, 05:00 AM
There is one problem witg that ukulele buy. I ordered kala for 300 euros few days ago and now i wrote to bank and to them to decline order and shipping and payment because order is still on hold. I hope order will be canceled and i wont be wasted all my money for the uke i dont want anymore because i decided to buy cheaper uke.:( and yes im looking for ukulele sound but i want to learn with concert and then buy beautiful soprano or concert i havent decided it yet