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View Full Version : A Hard Decision... Need advice



Bassukuguy
05-12-2008, 11:52 AM
hey guys just joined here and guess what i have a little money rattling around in my pocket.

first thing is first, im going to be buying a ukulele, and its going to be from MGM because he seems to be the coolest guy around these boards and everyone seems to like him. now, i have fiddled around on different ones in local music stores (mostly sopranos) and im making the decision that i need something bigger. i have two choices a Tenor, or a Concert.

now here is the rub. MGM has two that seem really great but im not sure where to go here.

first this is a Kala Concert with the awesome set up job that MGM does
http://cgi.ebay.com/KALA-BRAND-KA-C-Mahogany-Concert-Ukulele-Case-Setup_W0QQitemZ230250813897QQihZ013QQcategoryZ1622 4QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

and here is a Makala Tenor Uke with the same deal as the other
http://cgi.ebay.com/MAKALA-TENOR-UKULELE-STARTER-PACK-W-CASE-AND-CHORDBOOK_W0QQitemZ250244356290QQihZ015QQcategoryZ 16224QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

now here is where i need help they are just about the same price and i just need to know if i should go for the better brand, Kala, or the bigger uke Makala.

i understand that the two brands are like the difference between Fender and Squire, but on this matter im clueless...

keep on playing
(V)@

thejumpingflea
05-12-2008, 12:24 PM
hey guys just joined here and guess what i have a little money rattling around in my pocket.

first thing is first, im going to be buying a ukulele, and its going to be from MGM because he seems to be the coolest guy around these boards and everyone seems to like him. now, i have fiddled around on different ones in local music stores (mostly sopranos) and im making the decision that i need something bigger. i have two choices a Tenor, or a Concert.

now here is the rub. MGM has two that seem really great but im not sure where to go here.

first this is a Kala Concert with the awesome set up job that MGM does
http://cgi.ebay.com/KALA-BRAND-KA-C-Mahogany-Concert-Ukulele-Case-Setup_W0QQitemZ230250813897QQihZ013QQcategoryZ1622 4QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

and here is a Makala Tenor Uke with the same deal as the other
http://cgi.ebay.com/MAKALA-TENOR-UKULELE-STARTER-PACK-W-CASE-AND-CHORDBOOK_W0QQitemZ250244356290QQihZ015QQcategoryZ 16224QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

now here is where i need help they are just about the same price and i just need to know if i should go for the better brand, Kala, or the bigger uke Makala.

i understand that the two brands are like the difference between Fender and Squire, but on this matter im clueless...

keep on playing
(V)@


Well the first question is do you already have a Tenor or Concert? If so, which do you enjoy playing more? Based on that I'd make the decision.

MGM is the BEST online dealer I have ever dealt with (I have boughten my Kamaka and EleUke from him) and I know that you are getting a great deal from either.

Personally, if it were me I'd go with the Kala. It is a more reliable brand (IMHO) and I like the concert sound the most. Put on some Aquila Nygluts and it will simply sing.

Hope that helps! :nana:

UkuleleHill
05-12-2008, 01:17 PM
if you are used to playing a Bass.... I would say just based on size the tenor will be more up your alley... But based on brands I would buy the concert... But my question is is this your first uke?

NotoriousMOK
05-12-2008, 02:44 PM
First off, welcome to the forum!!

Makala is a budget-minded series made by Kala. Both have laminate soundboards and will likely last quite some time. Being the budget series, your Makala tenor option will be a little simpler in design than the Kala concert. I am also going to assume this is you first uke, and wether or not you're aware of it yet, probably not your last.

So given these choices, and your situation, I'd say go with the Kala Concert. The concert size will give you a basis that you can use to decide if your NEXT uke should be the same size, larger or smaller. You will probably take this one everywhere, and subject it to a reasonable beating as time goes on, so the higher quality of the Kala will pay off. I also feel that next time around, you'll be after a solid uke as opposed to a laminate. Now you're talking about considerably more money, and you'll have much more personal uke-experience telling you what features are most important to you.

Have fun!

Bassukuguy
05-12-2008, 04:54 PM
thanks guys. as you might have guessed yes this is my first uke. my problem is that alot of the music stores around me, southern Illinois, stock only soprano type ukes. i have never played a tenor or a concert. im thinking that i will go with the Kala for playability, quality, and name brand sake.

oh and i am well aware of the compulsion to buy more and more instruments, i'm 21 and i have a room full of guitars, basses, a violin, and many other random instruments.

thanks guys i have seen many threads about newbs asking which one is better, but i was really at a loss on this.

i will probably be buying this sometime tomorrow so thanks guys

happy playing

(V)@

degracia
05-12-2008, 05:02 PM
The Makala actually has done the job for me. The sound is awesome. The Aquilas with low g is really deep and has that rich tone. The fretboards are kind of wide so those 'easy' chords might be more difficult but I really like it.

Bassukuguy
05-12-2008, 06:13 PM
ahh damn... im litterally sitting here infront of my computer and i keep switching between the two ebay sites....

damn my poor decision making skills... is there anyone who has played both, i know its not me playing them but its nice just to have some kind of review...

damn...

(V)@

UkuLeLesReggAe
05-12-2008, 06:16 PM
I would say go for the Makala tenor LOL

isn't the most popular ukulele played the tenor sized?? but don't buy it just because it has 2 more frets or whatever, but the makala looks nice.

deach
05-12-2008, 06:17 PM
Seems like the only thing to do is get both.

UkuLeLesReggAe
05-12-2008, 06:22 PM
Seems like the only thing to do is get both.

HAHAHA! actually that would solve the problem, consider it.

NotoriousMOK
05-12-2008, 06:28 PM
good point, i mean, yer gonna collect a stack anyways (obviously, you've got priors), and you need one strung standard and one strung Low-G, yer gonna save a little on shipping two. good luck :p

deach
05-12-2008, 06:29 PM
NotoriousMOK is a wise man.

Bassukuguy
05-12-2008, 06:31 PM
hah, i wish i could drop around 300 bucks without blinking... i only have about 150 at the moment.

i dont know i will probably just dance around the two pages for the rest of the night and decide tomorrow...

the thing that gets me is that 5 buck price difference...

(V)@

UkuLeLesReggAe
05-12-2008, 06:36 PM
IMO i would get a concert because i already own a tenor ukulele..

both ukuleles look fine so looks wouldn't bother me.
I would just be concerned about what they look like, you should go for a tenor, because i was going to get a soprano and your first ukulele you'll want to keep for some time until you get good and buy a $500 one or whatever.. And tenors just sounds really nice..

Guting convinced me to buy a tenor with out ever saying anything haha!

NotoriousMOK
05-12-2008, 06:39 PM
it doesn't matter at this point, you'll buy the concert now, and the tenor later, or vice versa. It's pretty much a win/win -- the only way to lose is not to jump at all.

oh, by the way, MGM could be packing your order NOW. You could wait one more day to decide, or wait one less day for it to arrive. no pressure. :p

deach
05-12-2008, 06:40 PM
I think the concert is a better buy. Why? I bought the Makala package about 2 months ago for $99. I'm not sure what caused the increase in price. To be fair, I do not know what the concert's price was 2 months ago.

I gave up the tenor because it sounded too close to a guitar when compared to a soprano ukulele. If you like the higher plinkier sound, go with a concert. Since you're a bass player, the deeper voice of the tenor may not bother you.

Hope this confuses you more.:D

NotoriousMOK
05-12-2008, 06:45 PM
okay deach, now that he's all hung up on which uke to buy . . . .

would you like to start the 'which strings/tuning" dilema, or shall I ??

:nana:

deach
05-12-2008, 06:48 PM
okay deach, now that he's all hung up on which uke to buy . . . .

would you like to start the 'which strings/tuning" dilema, or shall I ??

:nana:

lol, He would have been better off flipping a coin than asking us. :D We're just adding to confusion and ultimately, he's going to end up buying 3 or 4 in the next week (nothing I'm guilty of - riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight).

Bassukuguy
05-12-2008, 06:54 PM
hah, i know what strings im going to use i have heard many different types but i like Aquila strings, and tuning wise i plan on getting the low g and getting a second set with a high g so i can get both and see what i like better when i wear the strings out...


and yes i am confused but im sure i will make a snap decision at some point in the near future.

thanks again

(V)@

NotoriousMOK
05-12-2008, 06:56 PM
damn -- foiled again!


shh! is that the UPS guy I hear coming down the street at MGM's???


tick. tock. :D

deach
05-12-2008, 06:59 PM
damn -- foiled again!


shh! is that the UPS guy I hear coming down the street at MGM's???


tick. tock. :D

lol - too funny!

Bassukuguy
05-12-2008, 07:02 PM
alright im pretty sure (like 65%) im going to be getting the kala then when i get the money up i will probably be buying some kindof tenor depending on how i feel about the concert.

you guys are awesome, im so glad i stumbled on to this site on an urge to buy a random instrument. to think this all started with me wanting to buy a mandolin... which is still a possible next purchase...

you guys rock

(V)@

Gaby
05-14-2008, 03:46 AM
I think still the majority of ukes sold are sopranos...?

I prefer concerts myself, size and tone-wise, but not withstanding that, the Kala is just a notch up from the Makala, so for that reason I would get that one.

It would be a good reference point indeed... I tend to recommend concerts to beginners as the are less 'fiddly', easy to play and hold and particularly when they are laminated, also a bit louder than the sopranos.

I know a lot of professional players play tenor ukes, however, personally I do not like their acoustic sound as much as the smaller sized ukes (plugged in it doesn't matter so much), but that is personal.

Quite few guys who have been buying ukes in our shop bought tenors because they liked the longer chunkier necks and bigger bodies though...maybe they think it's more 'manly' (but how would I know...)? The Makala is great value for money in this category.

Summing it all up, my advice would be, if you don't need the extra frets (and I'd say, most beginners don't), just go for the better uke, the concert. It looks nicer too!

Whichever uke you are getting, restring it with Aquila strings!

Mandolin? Get an 8-string uke instead!

ichadwick
05-14-2008, 04:02 AM
IQuite few guys who have been buying ukes in our shop bought tenors because they liked the longer chunkier necks and bigger bodies though...maybe they think it's more 'manly' (but how would I know...)?
Manly? Gee, does that make all the soprano playing guys 'girly men'? Are we about to get into a slap fight here?

Personally, I like the tenor sound better. Tenors have larger bodies and larger resonating faces. That allows for a wider range of tonal qualities - especially more mid and lower end tones. The larger front will also resonate a bit longer than a smaller one, so it produces harmonic overtones.

I think a tenor is also a bit louder, at least in my limited experience with ukes. It's certainly true of guitars where dreadnoughts are big boomers.

But then there's the size factor. I have all three sizes and prefer the tenor scale simply because it is easier for some chord patterns for me.

Gaby
05-14-2008, 09:07 PM
Haha! Let's not get into a s**t fight, haha!

All I am saying that there have been quite a few blokes who had no apparent reason for buying tenor ukes in our store and the vibe I got from them was that they think they look cooler with a bigger uke. But hey, I may be wrong?

And what you are saying about the tone etc of a tenor is true...and that's why I am not so fond of them myself...and that's why there are the different sizes :)

It's all personal at the end of the day...but please don't take it personal!

Bassukuguy
05-15-2008, 05:11 PM
Well its finished. after a day without the internet... Phu*ing Verizon...

about ten minutes ago i ordered this beauty from MGM... now the wait...

http://cgi.ebay.com/KALA-BRAND-KA-C-Mahogany-Concert-Ukulele-Case-Setup_W0QQitemZ250248488524QQihZ015QQcategoryZ1622 4QQcmdZViewItem


i will finally be able to join the ranks of my fellow strummers...

thanks again for all the advice!

(V)@

NotoriousMOK
05-15-2008, 08:47 PM
right on -- congrats on taking the plunge -- tell us all about it when it shows up -- have fun!