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Ukecaster
04-23-2017, 12:12 PM
Just curious, I see many high end ukes with slotted headstocks. Are there any sound/tonal/comfort benefits, or are they just a style preference?

Doc_J
04-23-2017, 12:53 PM
You'll find some great posts from knowledgeable people in this past thread.
http://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?80750-Slot-head-vs-paddle-weight&highlight=Slotted+tone

Camsuke
04-23-2017, 07:20 PM
Like most things I suppose, there are pros & cons. The main thing I like is the look.
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jollyboy
04-23-2017, 07:23 PM
There's some interesting stuff about slotted headstocks in this video (starts at about 2:15):


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nv2O-PfdFWU

And, as already mentioned, they look cool :cool:

Brad Bordessa
04-23-2017, 07:41 PM
Not reaching around and under for the tuners: bliss.

bborzell
04-23-2017, 08:06 PM
I own two slot heads and two flat head tenors. I prefer the look of the slot heads. Stringing sucks no matter which head I am dealing with. One of my slot heads has very light mini tuners and it feels lighter in the head than the others.

The reality though is that, once I pick up any of the tenors and begin to play, the notion of "feel" as related to head design goes away. Whether one uke is actually a bit lighter or heavier in the head quickly fades from awareness as I unconsciously adjust to each different instrument.

Bottom line is that I like the slot look.

Rakelele
04-23-2017, 11:08 PM
Some possible advantages (or differences):

- looks
- having all tuners facing and turning the same way
- geared tuners that don't stick out like Mickey Mouse ears
- break angle of the strings at the nut
- weight
- stringing

Not all of these points will apply to every build, and tonal differences may have to do more with an individual instrument than with the type of headstock. So for me, the main reason to go for a slotted headstock is because I like the look.

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
04-24-2017, 08:06 AM
Jake is the reason I have a demand for slotted headstocks. ;)

Mivo
04-24-2017, 08:42 AM
I like the look of slotted headstocks on baritones. The extra weight doesn't matter there. On smaller ukes, though, I prefer traditional headstocks and, ideally, Gotoh UPT tuners.

Ukecaster
04-24-2017, 10:40 AM
Jake is the reason I have a demand for slotted headstocks. ;)

That's funny. As Jake goes, so goes the world!

stevepetergal
04-24-2017, 01:54 PM
That's funny. As Jake goes, so goes the world!

The ukulele world

bearbike137
04-25-2017, 08:11 AM
I think they look cool. However, changing strings on them is more of a hassle!

UkuleleSprinter
04-26-2017, 06:38 AM
A lot of professional ukulele players have moved to slotted headstocks; Jake Shimabukuro, Herb Ohta Jr., Bryan Tolentino, Kalei Gamiao, Andrew Molina, and Kris Fuchigami to name a few.

The general public usually buy whatever their favorite artist play.

Mivo
04-26-2017, 06:49 AM
A lot of professional ukulele players have moved to slotted headstocks; Jake Shimabukuro, Herb Ohta Jr., Bryan Tolentino, Kalei Gamiao, Andrew Molina, and Kris Fuchigami to name a few. The general public usually buy whatever their favorite artist play.

Well, they are all sponsored, I believe. Ukuleles with slotted headstocks are relatively uncommon/new still, so few people have one, and they typically cost more than those with traditional headstocks. :) (Tongue in cheek here, I'm not really quite that cynical, though I have also never been the type of person to use something because a celebrity uses it. It's rather opposite for me.)

rubykey
04-26-2017, 08:50 AM
I got one before I knew it was cool. My first name begins with k that was one of my attractions to this. But it also plays good and sounds great! And it's for sale!

johnEuchre
04-26-2017, 04:43 PM
I'm a newbie and I got a slotted head for my first one. I did a lot of reading etc. and in fact returned 2 other ukes I got before settling on this one. I felt like for the money, being a beginner, and for the sound/looks combo, I was very satisfied with what I got.

Just my $0.02

99690

spookelele
04-27-2017, 03:55 AM
A lot of professional ukulele players have moved to slotted headstocks; Jake Shimabukuro, Herb Ohta Jr., Bryan Tolentino, Kalei Gamiao, Andrew Molina, and Kris Fuchigami to name a few.

The general public usually buy whatever their favorite artist play.

Arent those all Kamaka artists?

Anyway, I just thought I'd add, some people think a little weight on the headstock improves sustain.

Others will argue that the added weight throws off balance... but I really wonder about that, because alot of those same people leave the clip tuner on it.

bearbike137
04-27-2017, 04:25 AM
Arent those all Kamaka artists?

Anyway, I just thought I'd add, some people think a little weight on the headstock improves sustain.



I know that Jake believes this is true for his Kamaka. However, I think it depends on each individual instrument. I have heard/played some ukuleles with tremendous sustain that had regular headstocks. In fact, my vintage Martin tenors have at least as much sustain, and in some cases more, than the high end slotted headstock ukes I have owned. But then again, Jake knows way more about this than I do! :)

UkingViking
04-27-2017, 06:28 AM
For many years I had not noticed that some acoustic guitars don't have slotted headstocks.

Only after getting a ukulele I noticed that even some branded Martin guitars come with "ukulele headstocks" without the slots.
When being used to slotted headstocks, guitars look weird without.
I have no idea if there are practical advantages to the slotted ones though.

I like the idea of a slotted ukulele headstock, but on a concert it would probably look clumpsy.

southcoastukes
04-27-2017, 04:08 PM
Anyway, I just thought I'd add, some people think a little weight on the headstock improves sustain.

Hey, Spook!

You hear all sorts of things on the internet. And that idea was even kicked around the pseudo "luthier" community a while back. Where did you hear that from?

At any rate, that idea has been disproved. Heavier weight in the headstock absorbs sound. A lighter weight in the headstock has been shown to provide greater sound transfer to the soundboard. And the break angle is just another red herring. Break angle can be set without regard to the design of headstock.

Of course, this sort of thing is not make or break in and of itself in the make-up of a good sounding instrument; no more than for example, than the encasing of a body in a thick plastic looking finish. There are ways to compensate in construction for these sort of compromises as long as you don't mind what comes as a result.

While optimum sound comes from optimizing every little aspect you can, for those who feel this is something that "looks better" (I don't like it personally), then a slotted headstock in and of itself doesn't necessarily mean you've compromised sound to any significant extent.

ukuleleden
04-28-2017, 07:13 AM
My first ukulele was a Slot head Kala model. It was an easy decision because for years I played a slot head Martin guitar (model CEO-5). The 12fret (to the body) slot head Martin guitars are very much boomers in volume. That doesn't carry over to the Uke because of the body differences though.

The Magic Fluke headstock was also a natural look and feel for what I was accustomed to, but I have no real preference as long as the ukulele sound, feel, build and to a degree look are of excellent quality.