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reel
06-05-2009, 09:03 PM
Hi all,
I'm new to this site and had a few questions.
I was at a music shop earlier today and i saw this ukulele.
http://www.kaboodle.com/reviews/kala-watermelon-soprano-ukulele
or
http://www.cranesmusicstore.com/hudsonhcuwmlwatermelonukulele-p-1410.html

I don't know the difference between the two, but I am assuming it is the manufacturers. I think one is Kala and the other is Hudson. I've tried to do some research on both of them but i found very few results for Hudson.
I understand that these ukulele's are kinda a joke, but it's watermelon look really got me interested in the ukulele.
But my questions are
1) Which company manufactures better quality ukuleles?
2) Would it be wise to buy either one online without trying it out. I do not really know what sound i am looking for, so if anyone can offer insight as to which one has a better reputation. (the place where i saw it only had 1, and i am unsure which company made the ukulele i saw)

ukulele2544
06-05-2009, 09:06 PM
haha.. very creative

ukantor
06-05-2009, 09:20 PM
Hi reel,

It is highly likely that both these are from the very same factory, but are branded differently according to who is selling them. They just have their own label stuck in. If you already have a decent uke, but like this one for its paint job, then you can't go far wrong at that price, but don't expect too much in the way of tone and volume - it's just a novelty instrument.

Ukantor.

HoboUke
06-05-2009, 11:01 PM
My wife recently bought both my daughter and me a Kala Uke. I got a Kala Archtop Jazz Tenor and my daughter got a Kala Kiwi Soprano like this one. (item #250438749251)

http://cgi.ebay.com/Hot-New-Item-KALA-KIWI-SOPRANO-UKULELE_W0QQitemZ250438749251QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH _DefaultDomain_0?hash=item3a4f500c43&_trksid=p4634.c0.m14.l1262&_trkparms=%7C301%3A0%7C293%3A7%7C294%3A30

I was impressed at how tight this one was built and the volume it has, especially for the price.

Here is listed a Kala Watermelon Uke. (item #270400319536) If it's anything like the Kiwi, I'd say get it.

http://cgi.ebay.com/New-Kala-Satin-Watermelon-Soprano-Ukulele-w-aquilas_W0QQitemZ270400319536QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH _DefaultDomain_0?hash=item3ef51d7030&_trksid=p4634.c0.m14.l1262&_trkparms=%7C301%3A0%7C293%3A7%7C294%3A30

~Sam

whetu
06-06-2009, 01:01 AM
I was at a music shop earlier today and i saw this ukulele.


2) Would it be wise to buy either one online without trying it out. I do not really know what sound i am looking for, so if anyone can offer insight as to which one has a better reputation. (the place where i saw it only had 1, and i am unsure which company made the ukulele i saw)

Hey reel, welcome along :) First bit of advice is that you should watch this:
http://ukuleleunderground.com/2009/01/10/uke-minutes-34-buying-an-ukulele/

If at all possible, go back to the store and ask them to tune it up*. Then have a play on it and see what you think: how does it sound, how does it feel to hold etc. If they have other ukes in a similar price range, ask for them to be tuned up and have a comparison. For reference, compare to a pricier uke. Use what you've learned from the above video and take the plunge!

If you can't go back to the store, I actually had a play with one of these the other day, and I think that for the money it seemed to be a good entry level uke. Then again, Kala and their cheaper "Makala" line are usually good bets for first ukes IMHO.

For everyone else: it's exactly the same as the kiwifruit uke, just a different sticker/paintjob/whatever on the front. See hobouke's advice above.

* If I had a dollar for every time I've seen people grab a non-tuned instrument off the shelf or rack, tinker with it and put it back in disgust/confusion because it sounds 'bad'... well I'd have enough to buy some beer :)

reel
06-06-2009, 04:20 AM
wow, thanks for the replies. I didn't expect so many responses so quick. I'll try to go back to the store when i can, but its kinda a far drive. I've only listened to some music with ukuleles in it, so i'm kinda unsure of what crisp sound i am looking for.
As for the quality for the price, i'm not over paying for it am i? If i am, i was considering just getting a regular ukulele hopefully for around the same price .

CoffeeMate
06-06-2009, 04:25 AM
http:///cgi.ebay.com/New-Kala-Satin-Watermelon-Soprano-Ukulele-w-aquilas_W0QQitemZ270400319536QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH _DefaultDomain_0?hash=item3ef51d7030&_trksid=p4634.c0.m14.l1262&_trkparms=|301%3A1|293%3A4|294%3A30


I have the pineapple version of this Kala, It is the same ukulele just a different paint job. I like it, it has a nice sound (kinda harp like) But you can listen to a sound sample of it at this link. It is also cheaper. Ukulele4u on e-bay usually carries them as well as elderly instruments on the interwebs.

ukulelebadass
06-06-2009, 04:39 AM
Hi reel,

It is highly likely that both these are from the very same factory, but are branded differently according to who is selling them. They just have their own label stuck in. If you already have a decent uke, but like this one for its paint job, then you can't go far wrong at that price, but don't expect too much in the way of tone and volume - it's just a novelty instrument.

Ukantor.

The bodies might be manufactured at the same plant but they definitely have different saddles on them so there may be other differences as weel, it's hard to tell from the pictures. I don't know anything about Hudson, but if KALA is sticking their label on something I expect it's pretty good...

ukebrudder
06-06-2009, 05:17 AM
I would definitely stick with the Kala ukulele over Hudson. Knowing the ukulele is from a company that doesn't specialize in ukuleles is enough to make me not want to buy from them.

ukantor
06-06-2009, 05:19 AM
I agree with the positive comments about Kala products. From what I've seen of their other ukes, I'd be happy to buy one, if that sort of thing appealed to me. Personally, I'd go for a regular Kala uke at around the same price - but I'm a boring old git!

Ukantor.

danged
06-06-2009, 06:20 AM
I would also go with the Kala, as they back up their product with a good warranty. The Pineapple actually sounds decent with some upgraded strings!

ukulelebadass
06-06-2009, 06:25 AM
I agree with the positive comments about Kala products. From what I've seen of their other ukes, I'd be happy to buy one, if that sort of thing appealed to me. Personally, I'd go for a regular Kala uke at around the same price - but I'm a boring old git!

Ukantor.

My main uke is a KALA and it is sweet! The store I generally go to for good music advice only sells KALA and carries most of the more popular models- I have spent a lot of time in their testing room, and played most of them, and even the cheap ones are sweet.

I have never played a watermelon. I don't tend to go for the novelty stuff. All that paint has got to effect the resonance of the instrument, especially on a soprano, which is why I agree with ukantor. I would say that if you are serious about learning to play you should get a regular soprano.

Ukulele JJ
06-06-2009, 06:30 AM
Agreed on the Kala over the Hudson. And yes, get it from MusicGuyMic (the eBay link). Not only will you pay less than the Amazon price, but he'll put some really good strings on it for you (and adjust/set it up in other ways too).

I think you'll have a lot of fun with that uke. It looks like a hoot. Serious, schmerious... I say get it! :D

JJ

reel
06-06-2009, 07:46 AM
thanks guys, the more comments i read the more i want to purchase it.

pithaya9
06-06-2009, 09:56 AM
Agreed on the Kala over the Hudson. And yes, get it from MusicGuyMic (the eBay link). Not only will you pay less than the Amazon price, but he'll put some really good strings on it for you (and adjust/set it up in other ways too).

I think you'll have a lot of fun with that uke. It looks like a hoot. Serious, schmerious... I say get it! :D

JJ

Go with the Kala and yes I agree with Ukulele JJ, MusicGuyMic is the place to buy.

KC8AFW
06-06-2009, 12:37 PM
I agree with these guys...go with the Kala and get it from MGM. That way your sure the instrument is set up properly and has decent strings on it.

And FWIW...I like the Kiwi (http://cgi.ebay.com/Hot-New-Item-KALA-KIWI-SOPRANO-UKULELE_W0QQitemZ250438749251QQcmdZViewItemQQptZLH _DefaultDomain_0?hash=item3a4f500c43&_trksid=p4634.c0.m14.l1262&_trkparms=%7C301%3A0%7C293%3A1%7C294%3A30). :D

Lori
06-06-2009, 06:57 PM
I will just echo what the others have said... I have the sister Kiwi Kala, and like it very much. It is just what I was hoping for, a fun uke with style that is still a real musical instrument, not a wall hanger. I too, had trouble finding info on these ukes. I am working on a YouTube review which I hope to finish this week. This is my third ukulele, all from Kala. It is the least expensive of the group, but it still gets lots of playing time. My husband was just commenting on how nice the tone is. I changed the strings to Worth Clear mediums. And, as with most ukes, the sound is especially nice if you can play it away from your body (half way out on your thigh), so you don't mute the sound box.

The Kala Kiwi/ Watermelon are laminated mahogany, mahogany neck, rosewood fingerboard and bridge, geared tuners (they are nice), and a very clean glossy finish. Nice quality control on the Kalas. I got mine from MGM, very playable.

–Lori