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View Full Version : Satin vs gloss KoAloha



Hobgoblin Steve
01-14-2010, 05:56 PM
I'm being offered a choice of either a standard KoAloha Concert, or a Satin finish KoAloha concert. Whats the tonal differences between the two? If you're lucky enough to own one of each, which do you prefer?

Ronnie Aloha
01-14-2010, 06:09 PM
Not sure about the tonal qualities but the satin neck is faster. Seems like my hand glides over that finish.

Hobgoblin Steve
01-14-2010, 06:24 PM
do you have a picture of the satin finish?

RyanMFT
01-14-2010, 06:53 PM
I don't know if this picture is helpful to you Steve. This is my Koaloha concert. The finish is satin. It has kind of a warm glow that I think really compliments the Koa wood.http://i827.photobucket.com/albums/zz199/RyanMFT_photos/IMG_1475.jpg

Hobgoblin Steve
01-14-2010, 06:57 PM
^ that is very pretty indeed. I really like it, and once I see a gloss, I can make my aesthetic choice. How does it sound?

experimentjon
01-14-2010, 07:50 PM
Honestly, I think the KoAloha gloss and satin finishes look and sound pretty similar. The difference is not as pronounced as the difference between Kanilea's UV and gloss finish. I like the look of both, and can't choose a favorite, although I do prefer the slicker satin neck. As for sound, after trying two of them next to each other, I think it's really hard to tell which is better.

You'll be well suited with either.

Hobgoblin Steve
01-14-2010, 07:55 PM
Honestly, I think the KoAloha gloss and satin finishes look and sound pretty similar. The difference is not as pronounced as the difference between Kanilea's UV and gloss finish. I like the look of both, and can't choose a favorite, although I do prefer the slicker satin neck. As for sound, after trying two of them next to each other, I think it's really hard to tell which is better.

You'll be well suited with either.

Jon,
can you put up a quick photo of the gloss?

also can I ask for maybe a sound clip of both playing the same thing?

experimentjon
01-14-2010, 08:49 PM
This is a junk picture, but I don't have any of my KoAlohas with me at the dorm, so I can't take a better one.

http://i755.photobucket.com/albums/xx195/gotakon/ssDSC_0311.jpg

All of those are gloss finished.

I don't own a satin finished KoAloha (yet), and just played two of the sopranos next to each other at the factory. I have redone the neck of my superconcert to be more like a satin finish though. Love the feel. It is glossing back up though.

Hobgoblin Steve
01-14-2010, 08:54 PM
judging by your picture and Ryans, I think I like the Satin better, its mellow and If the one I get is half as nice as his (not knocking yours at all Jon) I'd be a happy man.

(damn, a Sceptre AND a PS? - Jealous)

experimentjon
01-14-2010, 09:12 PM
judging by your picture and Ryans, I think I like the Satin better, its mellow and If the one I get is half as nice as his (not knocking yours at all Jon) I'd be a happy man.

(damn, a Sceptre AND a PS? - Jealous)

No offense taken. The satin looks classier, and the KoAloha gloss is probably the least glossy out of the Kamaka, KoAloha, and Kanilea finishes. If I could change one thing about KoAlohas, it would probably to throw a UV finish or just a glossier finish on it. Still, all are great ukes. :)

Hobgoblin Steve
01-15-2010, 08:32 AM
Well I havent made my decision yet, I'm waiting on pics on both of them, Ill post them here once I get them.

RyanMFT
01-15-2010, 09:02 AM
I haven't played one that has a gloss finish but I would also bet the difference is very slight. My ear probabaly couldn't tell the difference. The finish on mine does have a sheen when light is reflected at an angle, which can't be seen in the picture I posted. You could send a PM to KoalohaPaul and ask for his thoughts.

The only other thing I can add is that of the several Koaloha's I have played at the shop where I bought mine, the clearness of tone and beauty is excellent on every instrument I picked up. I am very tempted to buy a soprano someday from Koaloha because the sound of my concert is the best in my stable that includes a vintage Martin, Kumalae, Favilla, and Regal! I really want to visit the Koaloha factory someday!

Oh, and thanks for the compliment on my uke....but all praises go to Koaloha!

Lanark
01-15-2010, 09:56 AM
I've got one of each on concerts. they sound very different, but I'd be really hard pressed to attribute it to the finish as opposed to the individuality of the koa and the amount of playing time each has had.
Aesthetically speaking though, I'm also in the satin camp. I think you can appreciate the grain better without the shine of the gloss. It's just much warmer and richer looking. On the other hand, my guess is that the gloss will wear better over time.

Hobgoblin Steve
01-15-2010, 10:32 AM
I've got one of each on concerts. they sound very different, but I'd be really hard pressed to attribute it to the finish as opposed to the individuality of the koa and the amount of playing time each has had.
Aesthetically speaking though, I'm also in the satin camp. I think you can appreciate the grain better without the shine of the gloss. It's just much warmer and richer looking. On the other hand, my guess is that the gloss will wear better over time.

Lanark,
Can I ask you to put up a picture with both in the same window? Im curious as to see the difference side by side, and if I can even tell

@Ryan,
I am talking to Paul, thats where theyre gonna come from :D

sukie
01-15-2010, 10:52 AM
Get the gloss. It's pretty!

haolejohn
01-15-2010, 01:55 PM
Lanark,
Can I ask you to put up a picture with both in the same window? Im curious as to see the difference side by side, and if I can even tell

@Ryan,
I am talking to Paul, thats where theyre gonna come from :D

Steve I got a satin concert and a gloss long neck soprano. I have a video of the concert on my YT (click link in my signture). Unfortunately I don't have a video camera with me to make a video of them next to each other. I can take some pictures for you once I get home. The gloss is pretty but I prefer the satin finish. It is more simple. He must become more. I must become less. Me<+>Me)

koalohapaul
01-15-2010, 07:12 PM
They're similar tonally, but there are subtle differences between the two. Both models use the same finish, but the satin tends to be a couple thousandths thinner after the final application, resulting in a slightly brighter tone. The gloss models are a little quieter, with a rounder, more refined tone. Visually, there's a clear difference, opposite of the tonal differences. The satin instruments look more subtle and refined, while the gloss is brighter.

RyanMFT
01-15-2010, 07:21 PM
Thanks Paul!

Hobgoblin Steve
01-15-2010, 08:47 PM
They're similar tonally, but there are subtle differences between the two. Both models use the same finish, but the satin tends to be a couple thousandths thinner after the final application, resulting in a slightly brighter tone. The gloss models are a little quieter, with a rounder, more refined tone. Visually, there's a clear difference, opposite of the tonal differences. The satin instruments look more subtle and refined, while the gloss is brighter.

Thanks Paul, I really think I'm going to go with the satin, as soon as you can send me a picture of one if you still have it Ill buy it :)

jkevinwolfe
01-16-2010, 12:59 AM
One thing about satin and gloss in general: friction noise. Satin and matte finishes tends to make noise as you brush against the instrument or it brushes against your body. Those who tend to move their uke around a lot as they play may pick up some of the friction noise when recording. This is not really a fault but more of a preference. Occasionally I have seen guitar player run their fingers along the satin finish on the soundboard to get a subtle sandpaper block sound.

Hobgoblin Steve
01-19-2010, 01:56 PM
thought Id throw up pictures of the two Im looking at: (by the way, I've decided on the one on the left- a Satin with the crown fretboard)

http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b126/Alderuen/IMG_0392.jpg
http://i18.photobucket.com/albums/b126/Alderuen/IMG_0393.jpg

Ronnie Aloha
01-19-2010, 02:07 PM
Both look fine. I think I saw the one on the right when I was there a couple of weeks ago. Very unique grain pattern.

fromthee2me
01-19-2010, 04:43 PM
Very nice !

RyanMFT
01-19-2010, 06:04 PM
Sweet, what a beauty! Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy! If you get half as much pleasure out of yours as I do mine, it will be money well spent! Post a picture when you get it!

guitharsis
01-19-2010, 11:53 PM
Very nice. Good choice. Congrats.