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DiscGolfGuy
06-27-2018, 08:58 AM
...you did not regret buying?

Many people here have given me great advice on buying my first ukulele (once I find the funds; probably a concert). But as I'm waiting until that happens I keep getting emails about ukes on sale incredibly cheap (the latest a $29 Mitchell MU40 Soprano, shipped).

Just interested in hearing about any ukuleles you've gotten on the cheap (or maybe you don't have any) that you were satisfied with.

DGGuy

Uke Don
06-27-2018, 09:19 AM
I've replied to your previous posts the same way: Enya solid mahogany top for around $70 on Amazon. It is comparable to Kala and others costing much more. And I have ukes costing much, much more. But the Enya is still enjoyable to play, once you've put on better strings. I keep mine by my desk and I don't have to worry that the dog knocks it over.

DiscGolfGuy
06-27-2018, 09:36 AM
Enya solid mahogany top for around $70 on Amazon. But the Enya is still enjoyable to play, once you've put on better strings. I keep mine by my desk and I don't have to worry that the dog knocks it over.

That's awesome to hear!

$54.99 for Enya solid mahogany top now https://www.amazon.com/KUC25D-Concert-Mahogany-Ukulele-Beginner/dp/B06WVN4F8W/ref=mp_s_a_1_fkmr0_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1530127776&sr=8-2-fkmr0&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=enya+solid+monagony+ukulele

DGGuy

maki66
06-27-2018, 10:47 AM
We bought a bunch of different Enya that were priced from $19-29 on three different occasions.
XLP camp soprano, multiple concert and tenors that were either solid top mahogany or sepele plywood.
Most were very good once the strings were changed. Most went to friends or relatives as gifts. None needed set up work.

I've bought several Donner sopranos for about $50. I like the Donners a lot, but they needed some work to lower the nut and or bridge.
And they needed better strings.

All of the above were from Amazon with free shipping, free soft case, straps, and tuners.
I check every now and then but haven't seen those fire sale prices in a while.
When I did see great prices, I would post a thread on this forum.

Rllink
06-27-2018, 10:48 AM
My first uke was a Makala concert package from Austin Bazaar and at the time it was $64.00 for uke, gig bag, microfiber cloth, Eno T-33 tuner, and a spare set of strings, shipping included. I played it for more than a year before I upgraded. I've always liked it and still play it often. It actually lives at our condo in PR and if I'm just going down for a couple of weeks I won't even drag something else down. The Makala is fine enough. The action was just fine out of the box.

WifeOnFourStrings
06-27-2018, 10:51 AM
That's awesome to hear!

$54.99 for Enya solid mahogany top now https://www.amazon.com/KUC25D-Concert-Mahogany-Ukulele-Beginner/dp/B06WVN4F8W/ref=mp_s_a_1_fkmr0_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1530127776&sr=8-2-fkmr0&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=enya+solid+monagony+ukulele

DGGuy

The Enya solid mahogany top has been as low as $41 in the past. If time is on your side, see if the price falls a little bit when Amazon restocks it.

I have the Enya KUC20 Concert Sapele Ukulele and for what I paid for the uke, case, tuner, etc. (way less than listed now), I have no regrets. It's more delicate than an outdoor ukulele, but much lower maintenance than the solid KALAs I own.

maki66
06-27-2018, 10:51 AM
That's awesome to hear!

$54.99 for Enya solid mahogany top now https://www.amazon.com/KUC25D-Concert-Mahogany-Ukulele-Beginner/dp/B06WVN4F8W/ref=mp_s_a_1_fkmr0_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1530127776&sr=8-2-fkmr0&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=enya+solid+monagony+ukulele

DGGuy

That's a really good deal.

Swamp Yankee
06-27-2018, 11:57 AM
not that it's information anyone will find useful - but my first ukulele was also the cheapest I've ever bought and did not regret having done so. A now defunct brand "Kolohe" which might never even had sold many ukes at all... mine might even be the only one for all I know. It was a brand name being used by Music Guy Mike for a line he was sourcing from Idonesia in 2005 that I bought on ebay. Mine is marked "1/1 prototype" and is an all solid mahogany concert. Out of the 6 ukes I now own and the 3 others I've sold off, it's still my favorite ... it cost me about $110 back then. It has a beautiful voice... seriously.

frianm
06-27-2018, 12:14 PM
I found a concert on Amazon for $18 shipped - slight ding but fixed real fast and gave to a beginner. I bought an Enya concert for a friend for not much more. They are out there

hmgberg
06-27-2018, 01:26 PM
I want to write about my first ukulele: a Kala KA-15S. It was about $45.00 at the time I bought it from musicguymic. It had a decal rosette that I played right off the top. It was wonderful then, and many ukuleles and ten years later, when I pick it up and strum it, I smile. I paid less for ukuleles I don't regret buying, but this one got me started. I purchased ukuleles and gave them away to others who wanted to learn to play. I thought occasionally about passing the Kala along, but I just can't bring myself to do it.

Nickie
06-27-2018, 01:42 PM
I've not been so frugal. I was naive and bought a used Hilo bari for $40, and thought it was awful, so I gave it to a friend who had lost his bari. Since I didn't learn to play anything on it, I guess that didn't count.
Then I bought a Cordoba at Sam Ash Music for $100. I should have kept it, I sold it for $50 to a friend and he still plays it.

I don't know if this counts, cause I really didn't buy them, but gentleman who was almost a stranger gave me 2 ukes, a Harmony Bari (I later sold it) and a Kamaka 8 string tenor, which I gave my wife. Cost - $0.00

Sven-Uke
06-27-2018, 01:50 PM
I am still very happy with my Makal Dolhpin which cost about € 35 a few years ago.
Perfect as a beater uke.

Jerryc41
06-28-2018, 01:25 AM
I got an Enya concert from Amazon during one of their brief sales. It cost $18.21, delivered, with all the Enya extras. Very nice uke. I also got an Enya tenor for $50.55. I converted that into a resonator. Both still look and sound good. I'm attaching a picture of the support pieces under the top of the tenor. Notice how they kept a space between the internal bracing and the backing piece for the bridge.

110089

stevejfc
06-28-2018, 01:56 AM
Years ago I bought an Oscar Schmidt OU-2 for $59. I still have it...…………….solid mahogany with a bound fretboard. They still sell in the $60 + range

rrieth
06-28-2018, 03:46 AM
New Kala ka-acp-ctg solid cedar top acacia lam back and sides slothead concert $50.50 shipped. Street price at the time was about $250. Found this on NewEgg shipped from Zorrosounds three years ago.

Croaky Keith
06-28-2018, 05:52 AM
The absolute cheapest I bought, & kept for a while, was a Brunswick plastic concert, but I never really liked it.

The least expensive uke I bought that I liked was a Makala pineapple soprano, it was loud, but I just don't get on with the size.

The cheapest that I still have & like is my Kala KA-SLNG, a long neck soprano.

Merja
06-28-2018, 08:59 AM
Cheapest I bought and didnt regret was my Flight TUS50 Travel ukulele. Nice little thing, plays well and very durable.

Jarmo_S
06-28-2018, 09:59 AM
Cheapest I bought and didnt regret was my Flight TUS50 Travel ukulele. Nice little thing, plays well and very durable.

Yes, this is a nice uke for the 49€. I would imagine with normal play the plastic frets would last a long time and them being the only ones subject to wear.

Papa Tom
06-28-2018, 12:11 PM
Do they still make Johnson ukes? That was my first (I think $40) and it's still my favorite. Great intonation and it holds its tune for what seems like weeks, even though it's got friction tuners!

Choirguy
06-28-2018, 04:00 PM
Like many others, the cheapest ukulele I have purchased that I did not regret buying was my Enya EUR-X1 round soprano ukulele last year, when for some unknown reason, they were $29. Thankfully we had some money in our choir booster account at the time, and I bought 13 others for our school so they could be checked out in the library (they came with a great bag and some accessories of differing values).

A few weeks about I bought a Sawtooth Pineapple Soprano Ukulele for less than $19 after taxes...but it needed some work and I replaced the tuners. If you could my time and the cost of the tuners (thank you, Ian!), I have more than $29 into that ukulele to make it playable.

On the flip side of the coin, the ukulele I have spent the most on (and kept) and have no regrets is my KoAloha Opio Sapele Tenor. I paid just over $500 for it new (B stock with spider cracks in the finish) with a case, and it has been the most wonderful instrument. If I ever see Sapele Opio Concerts or Sopranos up for sale here on UU (and priced right), I'll put in an offer...I think the sapele gave KoAloha some finish problems--but does it ever sound good in the KoAloha configuration.

ricdoug
06-28-2018, 04:32 PM
Mitchell MU40 on holiday sales hands down, as I've never bought one of these unplayable out of the box!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yk9RkAmKO4M

DiscGolfGuy
06-29-2018, 04:21 PM
Mitchell MU40 on holiday sales hands down, as I've never bought one of these unplayable out of the box!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yk9RkAmKO4M

I'm really hoping to get a Concert as my first (got long fingers) but $29 shipped (wood or black color) is pretty tough to pass up!!!

And then they have this one for $29 as well: https://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/diamond-head-du-150-soprano-ukulele/h86733000001001?pfm=item_page.rr1|CategorySiloedVi ewCP :D

DGGuy

bratsche
06-30-2018, 11:35 AM
The cheapest uke I've bought cost me $275; used, but not noticeably so. (Come to think about it, that's right around what I paid for my cheapest mandola, mandolin and violin that I've kept around for any length of time. Must be my magic number, or something!) Anyway, the uke is a Kala tenor, spruce over ovangkol ASOV-T. Very nice sounding and playing, and a looker as well. Got it in the marketplace here.

I haven't gone as inexpensive as some of you because I just wouldn't buy a well-worn beater, nor an instrument with laminate construction. The one exception to that (latter) was when I scored a great condition Baby Taylor guitar for cheap that I wanted to cut into and convert to an octave mandolin (the operation was pretty successful, but the scale is difficult to play).

bratsche

experimentjon
06-30-2018, 02:47 PM
This lovely Leolani laminate tenor w Aquila strings that I got from Sams Club with tuner and case as a package for under $100. I played it in the dorms throughout college, drew on the back, and at some point, had Aldrine sign the side. To be honest, I actually don't know where this instrument is now. I haven't seen it in a while... I know I bought another one of these and gave it to my friend in LA, but this one...it's either back home in a closet or gone somewhere...great instrument though.

http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e308/Experiment_Jon/ForSaleInstruments/IMG_0726.jpg (http://s42.photobucket.com/user/Experiment_Jon/media/ForSaleInstruments/IMG_0726.jpg.html)

http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e308/Experiment_Jon/ForSaleInstruments/IMG_0727.jpg (http://s42.photobucket.com/user/Experiment_Jon/media/ForSaleInstruments/IMG_0727.jpg.html)

weizenkeim
07-01-2018, 12:00 PM
cheapest one I didn't regret to buy?

My Kala KA-C ... which I still own an like to play :rolleyes:

lakesideglenn
07-01-2018, 12:08 PM
Yellow Malala Smiley Face...rang like a bell...I regret giving it away! $30 Uke that played like a million with Martin 600’s on it!

Uke Don
07-01-2018, 02:29 PM
I'm really hoping to get a Concert as my first (got long fingers) but $29 shipped (wood or black color) is pretty tough to pass up!!!

And then they have this one for $29 as well: https://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/diamond-head-du-150-soprano-ukulele/h86733000001001?pfm=item_page.rr1|CategorySiloedVi ewCP :D

DGGuy

Just don't.

Grizzly Adams
07-01-2018, 02:32 PM
I'm really hoping to get a Concert as my first (got long fingers) but $29 shipped (wood or black color) is pretty tough to pass up!!!

And then they have this one for $29 as well: https://www.musiciansfriend.com/folk-traditional-instruments/diamond-head-du-150-soprano-ukulele/h86733000001001?pfm=item_page.rr1|CategorySiloedVi ewCP :D

DGGuy

Well, it is a ukulele shaped object!

hendulele
07-01-2018, 04:34 PM
Makala concert for $68 at Penny Lane or Butler. It was a second (scuffs) but I got it because it has a passive pickup and I wanted something to plug in. The tuners were awful so I swapped them for fancy Grover frictions. The action is terrific and the dark laminate with zero bling is striking. Great knock around player.

Mr. Sweetie
07-01-2018, 05:24 PM
It would be my Kala KA-C which is what got me into ukulele on a more serious level than my touristulele.

kohanmike
07-01-2018, 08:03 PM
In the first year I played uke five years ago, I quickly succumbed to UAS. I roamed the internet constantly looking for interesting ukes. Very early on I found a two hole flame acacia koa tenor slot-head cutaway with gold hardware, abalone binding and rosette out of China for $140 shipped that has been a keeper after going through sixteen ukes that first year and culled them to four. Now that I'm up to eight, it's still one of my favorites.

http://www.kohanmike.com/uploads/Uku masked.jpg

8 tenor cutaway ukes, 3 acoustic bass ukes, 8 solid body bass ukes, 7 mini electric bass guitars

• Donate to The Ukulele Kids Club, they provide ukuleles to children's hospital music therapy programs. http://www.theukc.org
• Member The CC Strummers: https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos (https://www.youtube.com/user/CCStrummers/videos)

frukmana
07-02-2018, 06:14 AM
My only uke now is Cuke 60tsa gs. Bought it for $60 solid spruce top with solid amar back ? and slotted headstock. I only had to set the nut and saddle to lower the action. Overall I'm pretty satisfied with this Cuke.

ukulelekarcsi
07-02-2018, 09:32 PM
I've bought secondhand at seriously low prizes (50c, and the next one up was 10 €) simply because they weren't strung and there was a tuner missing. Both are wonderful instruments that can stand out in a flock of strumming ukes.

But I think the question was about new ukuleles.

As for cheap new ukuleles, I have sold them all on, I have to admit, because they were quiet, sounded like cardboard and in the case of one paricular MPM tenor teardrop-shaped, f-hole instrument, actually had frets protruding out so far it was a menace to all passersby. There is only somemuch setup and tweaking one can do. In my opinion there really is some sort of new price threshold before 'okay' becomes 'wow', and to me that's somewhere around 150-200 €.

And I always remember the advice a master musician once gave me about instruments: it's about the driver, not the car!

kissing
07-09-2018, 04:15 AM
This inexpensive Mahalo Les Paul style acoustic-electric has been a real steal for me.
After a bit of setting up, replacement of undersaddle piezo unit (which are cheap), it's a really versatile little beater.
And cutaway sopranos aren't common either

http://www.hba.co.nz/images/stories/virtuemart/product/UKEULP1EVS_lge.jpg

Kenn2018
07-11-2018, 06:19 AM
After attending my first ukulele club meeting, I was hooked and wanted to buy a tenor in time for the next meeting. I mean, I could play three chords so I was ready! My wife suggested that I use a $200 gift card from Amazon I had. Great idea! I looked at endless listings, but the one that caught my eye was the Fender Nohea. It had a very cool looking Telecaster-shape head, and the wood looked beautiful. It said it was "all koa" and I had read that koa was the best wood for a ukulele. So I bought it for $250.
In case you missed it, I knew nothing about ukuleles, what was good or bad. And zero about setup, action or intonation.
The uke arrived in three days and I was stoked. I also bought a tuner and a gig bag. I tuned it up and strummed away using the beginners guide they handed out to all of the newbes. And I practiced. Not bad. I went to the next meeting, learned some more things. And I started to look online for information about how to play a uke. Holy smokes! It's endless. But I found Barry Maz's Got A Ukulele site that was squarely aimed at helping beginners. Eye opener. (I highly recommend the website and Barry's books for beginners.)
I quickly realized that my "all koa" uke was a laminate. And that the problems I was having trying to make barre chords was partially due to the lack of a proper setup. It practically took a c-clamp to make a first fret barre on the thing. It sounded nice. It wasn't very loud, so that was good. I could blend in with the other 50 people at the meetings and no one would get overly upset with all of the mistakes I was making.
Eventually, I took it to a music store that sold a few decent ukuleles and the owner was very patient explaining some things to me. He played the Fender a bit and said, and I quote, "Oh my! That is bad." When he tried a Bb and few other barres. I left it with him for a day and he lowered the nut and saddle by quite a lot. He also suggested putting fluorocarbon strings on it. And he explained that. I bought a set, but it would be a couple of months before I made the change.
The adjustments helped a lot. The fluoro strings helped more, but it is still a difficult ukulele to play. It has a somewhat restrained sound with very little sustain, but it's pleasent.
But, in all honesty I think it was a good ukulele to learn on. It built the strength in my fingers. Started conversations with other players who liked its looks. And is very durable. I took it on several short trips and could play it quietly in my hotel room at night. I still have it, but I'm thinking about donating it to a charity...

ralphk
07-11-2018, 09:20 AM
My Donner Deal solid top a/e for $80 is still in active service. No regrets.