View Full Version : Eeep. Next uke help!

04-20-2009, 03:12 PM
Okay, so I know people make threads like these often, but I'm really wanting some opinions here.

Pretty much, I'm about to graduate, which means that I'll be coming into a good amount of money... and I'm thinking of putting some of that towards a solid wood soprano. Right now, I have a beater Lanikai LU-21 that my little brother sat on that is now glued together with Elmer's glue... it really doesn't sound THAT bad, but it's a little rough.

I also have a concert Fluke that I love. I mean, I love the feel of it and tone, and it really suits my voice... which is why I'm a little worried to get a soprano. (Should that be a concern?) I played around with getting a flea or an Applause, but I think I want a more classic and nice, solid soprano.

I don't want to spend much more than $200, just a little bit mayyybeeee. I was looking on MGM's Ebay Store, and I was kind of drawn to the Kala Mango soprano, it looks really nice, and I've only heard good things about Kala... but I really just want some guidance here... haha. I've also looking into Ohana, Mainland, and Bushman... just because they are all somewhat in my price range...

Please help me pick!!! :eek:

Thanks y'alls.

04-20-2009, 03:19 PM
Do you have any shops nearby where you can play a soprano? Even a cheap Mahalo or something. Just so that you can feel them and kinda get a jist of how they sound.

And I'd advise againt the Applause. I hear nothing but bad things about the, I was almost going to get one.. but a bunch of people contacted me and said don't do it.

04-20-2009, 04:30 PM
Well, I live near a local music store and a Sam Ash... but I don't always trust myself to make important decisions such as these, haha.

Right now I think I want advice on what to get, whether it be a Mainland, Ohana, or Kala... they're all pretty much in the same range...

04-20-2009, 04:40 PM
I agree with Link actually, esp. cause almost anything will be quite a bit different than your Fluke. If you've got a music store you can go to play a few different sizes at least that would help you narrow things down a lot... like soprano vs. tenor -- and don't worry, you'll definitely have a preference. :D

04-20-2009, 05:02 PM
mainland uke ftw!
mines coming on wednesday finally!

ive heard nothing but really good reviews about mainland. a lot of people keep mentioning how it's definitely worth the price. mines a beautiful gloss soprano mahogany.

i dont really know about the other brands though... i will admit... as i am still very new to the uke community.
but check out some of these vids of fellow UU uker's playing/reviewing the mainland uke.

ukisociety (matte mahogany soprano)
russ_buss (gloss red cedar soprano)

hope that helps!

04-20-2009, 05:06 PM
I will vouch for Kala, I received a all laminate mahogany tenor and it's great for the price. Since you are getting a soprano you can probably get all solid wood, or at least a solid top ukulele.

04-20-2009, 06:54 PM
Just so you know, the Kala mango is a laminate instrument, not solid wood. Kala does, however, make a solid mahogany soprano that is in your price range. They also have a solid lacewood model which is more expensive and soon enough they will release their solid acacia line. I'm not sure how much those will cost.

Ahnko Honu
04-20-2009, 06:54 PM
I don't own but I've handled spruce top KALA ukuleles with Mahogany, and Maple sides & back, and they sounded great, and the quality and workmanship belies the price usually running under $200.00. KALAs are the best bang for the buck ukuleles.

04-20-2009, 08:33 PM
Cedar top...concert. Mainland has some fine cedar-tops, Ohana too. Kala has this http://cgi.ebay.com/KALA-KOA-CONCERT-UKULELE-W-SOLID-CEDAR-TOP-KA-KC-CT_W0QQitemZ270375079446QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH_Defa ultDomain_0?hash=item270375079446&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=66%3A2%7C65%3A15%7C39%3A1%7C240%3A1318

Wait, I just noticed that you already have a concert model. Ok then. the Ohana cedar-top: http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-ITEM-OHANA-SK-50WG-SOPRANO-UKULELE-W-CASE_W0QQitemZ330322796060QQihZ014QQcategoryZ16224 QQcmdZViewItemQQ_trksidZp1742.m153.l1262

04-20-2009, 08:58 PM
I play a Kala mahogany concert.... I got it from MGM's ebay store. I like it alot. My wife has the kala Pinapple soprano. It has a beautiful sound. I have nothing bad to say about Kala's, I would recommend them and if you do get one, get it from MGM he does a great job setting them up.

04-20-2009, 08:59 PM
I recommend Mainland. Mine is still my prode and joy.. my baby.. my precious...

04-20-2009, 10:16 PM
I had a Kala mango concert on review recently, and it was good, but not great. Like all Kalas, it was well put together, looked really nice, and the intonation was perfect. The laminates, however, didn't give as nice a tone or as much sustain as I'd have liked, and I would recommend going for a solid top at least, or ideally all solid, if you can in your price range.

04-21-2009, 10:16 AM
Thanks everyone!

I think, right now I'm going to decide between Mainland and Ohana... ahhh... the choicesss.

04-21-2009, 10:33 AM
I would go with a mainland. I have one and its my new baby :D. I love everything about it.

05-23-2009, 08:18 AM
Hey everybody! Sorry to bring this thread back to life, but if some people could give me some opinions, that would be awesome!

I have narrowed my decision down to an Ohana, either a sopranino or a mahogony soprano, or a mainland mahogony soprano. How do these brands compare? They're so close in price, I'm just not sure!

I'm also really considering a flea, just a normal flea with the plastic fretboard, the only reason I wouldn't is because I have a fluke and I think I want some variety.
A solid kala, I haven't decided on wood, but I haven't heard a lot of kalas.
Or a Lanikai LCD-C which is such a PRETTY uke, I loooove the way is looks, it's sooo gorgeous, I'm just not sure about sound, and it's a concert, and I really wanted a soprano until I saw this uke. It's the most expensive, but not the biggest difference.

If you have opinions based on sound of the instruments, I'd be sooo grateful! Thanks!

05-23-2009, 10:08 AM
Hey check out this link.


I own three MELEs, two Kalas and have played Ohanas and Mainlands (really like the mainland) but The Meles are the best of this crop. Anyways Mele is haveing a GREAT anniversery sale and I own a koa top mahaghany back and sides tenor and the sound that you get from the blend of these two woods is different from a solid mahghany and a solid koa (My other two Meles). The mixture of the two is unique and I prefer it over my other ones.

05-23-2009, 11:22 AM
I would go with a mainland. I have one and im very happy with it. second choice would be a tie between ohana and kala. ive heard some good things about bushman, but ive heard even better about the other three. also, make sure you check youtube for different wood sounds and dont just buy a uke because the wood looks pretty. each has a different sound, sustain, vibrations, blah blah blah.

ps: looking for ukes to buy is so much fun!! there are so many choices now-a-days. Its like going to a pet store to pick out a puppy from 1000 choices. lol

05-23-2009, 11:23 AM
I recommend Mainland. Mine is still my prode and joy.. my baby.. my precious...