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View Full Version : Ohana SK-28 vs SK-38 sound difference??



Astein2006
02-26-2019, 01:33 PM
Considering buying one of these models. Can anyone chime in as to the differences in sound between these two models?
Thanks!

Bill Sheehan
02-26-2019, 05:47 PM
Astein, if you don't get any observations here, you might consider e-mailing Mim at Mim's Ukes, and I'll bet she could give you some thoughts based on her experience with the Ohana line.

Swamp Yankee
02-27-2019, 01:32 AM
I can't compare the two, as I only have the soprano. But in my experience, if you're also considering a vintage Martin, you likely won't be happy "settling" for the Ohana for very long.

Having said that, my Ohana SK-28 was my favorite soprano before I got a Kiwaya KTS-4. I like it more than my Mainland mahogany and red cedar top sopranos. I like it better than my Bruko... but since the Kiwayas landed, none of those ukes get much playing time at all.

As to differences between concerts and sopranos of similar makes and builds, in my experience the sopranos seem to shift the whole tonal focus to further to the treble side, and box it in a little more.

The concerts open it up and shift the focus more towards the mid range, catching more bass, and, in general, sound less boxy but lose some of the "bark" in the process.

Concerts hit the sweet spot for me in tone and playing comfort, but they don't give that same charming "bark"

mikelz777
02-27-2019, 01:44 AM
I can't comment on the sound but based on looks alone, the SK-38 by far.

Astein2006
02-27-2019, 05:01 AM
I can't compare the two, as I only have the soprano. But in my experience, if you're also considering a vintage Martin, you likely won't be happy "settling" for the Ohana for very long.

Having said that, my Ohana SK-28 was my favorite soprano before I got a Kiwaya KTS-4. I like it more than my Mainland mahogany and red cedar top sopranos. I like it better than my Bruko... but since the Kiwayas landed, none of those ukes get much playing time at all.

As to differences between concerts and sopranos of similar makes and builds, in my experience the sopranos seem to shift the whole tonal focus to further to the treble side, and box it in a little more.

The concerts open it up and shift the focus more towards the mid range, catching more bass, and, in general, sound less boxy but lose some of the "bark" in the process.

Concerts hit the sweet spot for me in tone and playing comfort, but they don't give that same charming "bark"

I’ve been considering the KTS4 forever. What can you tell me about it?

Ziret
02-27-2019, 05:22 AM
There's no comparison between it and either of those Ohanas--or any Ohana soprano I've seen. It's put together better, feels better, sounds better, looks better, is lighter and more responsive. Unless you need an extended fretboard, your playing will never outgrow it. If you need an extended fretboard, Kiwaya has that, but it will cost you. If you like playing sopranos, go straight to a Kiwaya Artist series and skip the Ohanas if you can afford it. There are other great sopranos out there, and you'll probably get recommendations for Timms, vintage Martins, and others, and those are great choices too. At that level, it comes down to what feels good to you, and the sound you want. But nice as those Ohanas look, when you hold one of them and then one of these others, you'll immediately see, feel, and hear the difference--and the Ohana will make you sad.

UkerDanno
02-27-2019, 06:22 AM
I can't comment on the sound but based on looks alone, the SK-38 by far.

I guess it depends on your taste, I like the SK-28, I've had it and the concert size, both are very nice. As far as the 28 vs the 38, they're both solid mahogany, I wouldn't expect a great difference in sound.

Check this out...
https://forum.ukuleleunderground.com/showthread.php?57766-Kiwaya-KTS-4-vs-Ohana-SK-38

EDW
02-27-2019, 06:43 AM
I’ve been considering the KTS4 forever. What can you tell me about it?

I had one years ago that I have always regretted selling. Build quality is impeccable. They are light, really responsive with great intonation, great feel and terrific sound. If one likes the traditional mahogany soprano sound they are a fantastic choice. I also had an Ohana SK38 at one point. While it was nice, the Kiwaya was heads and tails above it. For my taste and ears, the KTS4 is as nice or nicer than a number of custom luthier sopranos I have played.

Swamp Yankee
02-27-2019, 07:57 AM
I had one years ago that I have always regretted selling. Build quality is impeccable. They are light, really responsive with great intonation, great feel and terrific sound. If one likes the traditional mahogany soprano sound they are a fantastic choice. I also had an Ohana SK38 at one point. While it was nice, the Kiwaya was heads and tails above it. For my taste and ears, the KTS4 is as nice or nicer than a number of custom luthier sopranos I have played.

I feel the same. I admit there are still lots of ukes I'd like to try but so far, the only soprano I have played that I like more than my KTS-4 is my KTS-4K (koa). But, they're both very high quality builds. The fit and finish on either is superb. IMO, they play beautifully and sound wonderful.

I understand taste is subjective, but I don't think you'll find many players saying that Kiwaya Artist Series ukuleles are not beautiful examples of craftsmanship and quality.

I also agree with Ziret in that I doubt many players are likely to "outgrow" a Artist Series Kiwaya as they progress. Mine allow me to do things I just can't do with other ukes and the only ceiling they present is the twelve fret configuration... in which case, they make 'em with more frets.

And yes, in my opinion as well, there is no comparison to them and the Ohana SKs. I would take it a step further and rate the Kiwaya laminated mahogany KS-1 as being superior to the SK-28 in both tone and playability.

glennerd
02-27-2019, 09:00 AM
I've had the SK-39 and now the SK-38 and they're pretty similar sound-wise, but the SK-28 has the narrower Nunes style body so might be a bit different tone. I'd be interested to know too.

My SK-39 was way prettier than my SK-38, but I couldn't get on with the extended fretboard of the SK-39. The SK-28 has an marginally more abbreviated fretboard than the SK-38. Rope binding isn't really my style, but I bet it's impressive looking. I actually enjoyed looking at my SK-39 as much as playing it and I think the SK-28 would have the same effect.

Someone out there has to have both of them ...
:anyone:

Swamp Yankee
02-27-2019, 09:11 AM
I just realized I was mistaking the SK-38 for the concert size version of the SK-28 :rolleyes:

Ziret
02-27-2019, 11:23 AM
I understand taste is subjective, but I don't think you'll find many players saying that Kiwaya Artist Series ukuleles are not beautiful examples of craftsmanship and quality.

I also agree with Ziret in that I doubt many players are likely to "outgrow" a Artist Series Kiwaya as they progress. Mine allow me to do things I just can't do with other ukes and the only ceiling they present is the twelve fret configuration... in which case, they make 'em with more frets.


George Elmes has a KTS-7 that's his main player. I guess it's slightly possible that there's a better player than George out there, but it's not, and never will be, me.

Swamp Yankee
02-27-2019, 11:50 AM
George Elmes has a KTS-7 that's his main player. I guess it's slightly possible that there's a better player than George out there, but it's not, and never will be, me.

There's one on FMM now. I'm going through serious UAS symptoms over that beauty.:drool:

Ziret
02-27-2019, 06:36 PM
Don't tell me things like that!


There's one on FMM now. I'm going through serious UAS symptoms over that beauty.:drool: