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View Full Version : What size Uke do you prefer and why?



polynesianpop
06-02-2008, 09:28 AM
I currently own 2 soprano sized ukes and have been doing some research towards picking up a larger size mainly because the soprano seems a little too small for my hands. For now, through my research I've kind of narrowed it down to a Kala concert size uke as I want to keep the sound similar to a soprano.

Here's the rub. I haven't found anyone around here that has Kala ukes for me to try out prior to purchasing. I've hit up a couple of Guitar Centers around my home/work areas and noticed that some brands (ala Mitchell) have Concert and Tenor ukes that were very much the same size as a soprano.

With that said, I'm wondering how much of a difference going from a Soprano to a Concert will make. If the difference won't be much then I'm thinking of saving the money and possibly staying with a soprano.

I'm still very much a newbie at this so your thoughts and/or input would be greatly appreciated! :) What size ukes do you guys prefer and why?

deach
06-02-2008, 09:46 AM
I like sopranos because of the sound. I've tried to like tenors and concerts but I've ended up giving them all away.

As for big hands, here is a picture of my hand. Can you see the cd under it?

UKISOCIETY
06-02-2008, 09:48 AM
I like sopranos because of the sound. I've tried to like tenors and concerts but I've ended up giving them all away.

As for big hands, here is a picture of my hand. Can you see the cd under it?

I see it. I didn't take you for a Frankie Goes to Hollywood fan. :D

deach
06-02-2008, 09:50 AM
I see it. I didn't take you for a Frankie Goes to Hollywood fan. :D

I'm an 80's child. RELAX!!!! truth - I had the vinyl version.

russ_buss
06-02-2008, 09:51 AM
I like sopranos because of the sound. I've tried to like tenors and concerts but I've ended up giving them all away.

As for big hands, here is a picture of my hand. Can you see the cd under it?

wow, those are some mitts!

i like the sound of a soprano as well, but the versatility of a tenor. if you buy one of each size, you'll never have to wonder.:D

deach
06-02-2008, 09:56 AM
Have you checked out the UU Members (http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&msid=109093481034122753733.00044cdb24d27208e3692&ie=UTF8&z=19) map? There's gotta be someone that lives close by that would be willing to let you check out one of their ukes.

polynesianpop
06-02-2008, 10:04 AM
Thanks for the input. I did check the UU members map but haven't contacted anyone yet.

tad
06-02-2008, 10:14 AM
I have two sopranos and three concerts, but I *prefer* sopranos.

I like the sound, and the size.

And the price.

SailQwest
06-02-2008, 10:19 AM
Rich and I actually bought and tried all the sizes! We don't have a music store here that we can visit. :( In fact, a lot of people think that our ukuleles are cavaquinhos or cuatros, which are more common here in the Caribbean.

My preferred instrument is a concert, mainly because the tenor has too big a fretboard for my small hands. Rich primarily plays a (g-tuned) tenor.

GX9901
06-02-2008, 10:22 AM
Here's the rub. I haven't found anyone around here that has Kala ukes for me to try out prior to purchasing. I've hit up a couple of Guitar Centers around my home/work areas and noticed that some brands (ala Mitchell) have Concert and Tenor ukes that were very much the same size as a soprano.


I'm not quite sure what this means. If the concert & tenor ukes are the same size as the soprano, wouldn't it make them sopranos? Were they mis-labeled by GC?

I think there is a bigger difference in feel going from soprano to concert than from concert to tenor. You should feel the additional room on the fretboard, especially at the higher frets. If you want soprano sound with more fretboard room, perhaps a super-soprano would do it for you.

I like the sound of ukuleles of all sizes. I do prefer to play tenors & concerts with tenors being my main players. The reason is that I figure if I can play something in tenor scale, I can play them on a concert or soprano, so I try to make sure I can play in tenor scale to "cover all the bases".

Plainsong
06-02-2008, 10:44 AM
Rich and I actually bought and tried all the sizes! We don't have a music store here that we can visit. :( In fact, a lot of people think that our ukuleles are cavaquinhos or cuatros, which are more common here in the Caribbean.

My preferred instrument is a concert, mainly because the tenor has too big a fretboard for my small hands. Rich primarily plays a (g-tuned) tenor.

I have a similar problem. Tenors are playable, but bar chords are just about as impossible as they were on a guitar.... almost. :rolleyes:

I feel a bit cramped on a soprano but it's alright. Concert size is absolutely perfect for my fingers. Although it is nice when I nearly nail a song on a tenor, then go to concert and suddenly - wow! It's much easier! :rock:

Valerie
06-02-2008, 11:01 AM
Mf favorite size is the concert. Tenor just didn't feel right- and soprano (while I loved the look--) didn't feel right either. With the tenor I had to kind of move my elbow out to reach the lower frets (same as when you play guitar... abducted to about 45')- with the soprano just slid all over the place.

But when I picked up a concert it was perfect. The scale seemed to match my body proportions exactly.

My friend even commented that the instrument looked custom made for my size- the total length of mine is 24 inches- which is also exactly how long my arms are from shoulder to finger-tips.

I actually was dead set on getting a tenor- after reading a bit on this site. I normally like a more mellow tone compared to the punchy sound of the concert I now have. But I grew to love it- and now when I play my guitar it sounds-- Really melancholy.

I think I'm a concert girl for good.

polynesianpop
06-02-2008, 11:05 AM
I'm not quite sure what this means. If the concert & tenor ukes are the same size as the soprano, wouldn't it make them sopranos? Were they mis-labeled by GC?



Possibly! Thats what got me confused. I pulled a Concert off the wall and strummed it for a bit to listen its tone and noticed its size felt just like my Soprano. And because I went in looking for a Concert this kind of threw me off. They had another Mitchell across the room that was marked Tenor and when I held them up to each other they were about the same size.

Maybe they were mis-marked? Of all the GC's I've visited so far, none of the employees there have any clue about the Ukes.



I think there is a bigger difference in feel going from soprano to concert than from concert to tenor. You should feel the additional room on the fretboard, especially at the higher frets. If you want soprano sound with more fretboard room, perhaps a super-soprano would do it for you.



Thanks -- this is really good input! Based on this I'm feeling more confident that a Concert is the size I'm looking for.

Plainsong
06-02-2008, 11:33 AM
I moved the Kala aqua tenor - Lois, to the guitar hanger over the keyboard. My husband commented that with the color and the binding, it looked like it was supposed to be there. I finally took down the guitar, which is all busted and broken, and it sucked even before it was busted and broken. The guitar seems ridiculously big compared to the uke. :D

deach
06-02-2008, 12:56 PM
...
I actually was dead set on getting a tenor- after reading a bit on this site. I normally like a more mellow tone compared to the punchy sound of the concert I now have. But I grew to love it- and now when I play my guitar it sounds-- Really melancholy...

Wood and string type can dictate the sound as well.

Esy
06-02-2008, 01:12 PM
i prefered tenors ukulelel ;p

but soprano is good for happy sdtrumming :p:music:

dave g
06-02-2008, 02:02 PM
I prefer sopranos - one of the main things that attracted me to ukes in the first place was their size (little). But, concerts are OK too :)

NotoriousMOK
06-02-2008, 03:23 PM
Here's the rub. I haven't found anyone around here that has Kala ukes for me to try out prior to purchasing. I've hit up a couple of Guitar Centers around my home/work areas and noticed that some brands (ala Mitchell) have Concert and Tenor ukes that were very much the same size as a soprano.

Hey polypop, welcome to the forum!

I was going to recommend that you keep an eyeball on the Moreno Valley thread, but I see you've found it already. Though a date has not yet been set, once it gets figured out that event would be a perfect opportunity for you to expose yourself to a variety of uke sizes. You may elect to wait until then to push the button . . . but what's the fun in waiting??

I have one of each size, and I play the tenor most of the time now, but it is also the new one of the bunch, and I'm still trying to get used to it. I still pick up the concert and soprano as they have their own unique sounds that I enjoy.

For you I'd say a concert would probably be the logical choice. However, let's be honest here, you'll probably get a tenor at some point anyways, so this isn't your last uke, it's your next one. :D

Have fun!

polynesianpop
06-02-2008, 03:31 PM
Hey polypop, welcome to the forum!

For you I'd say a concert would probably be the logical choice. However, let's be honest here, you'll probably get a tenor at some point anyways, so this isn't your last uke, it's your next one. :D



Thanks for the welcome MOK (cool name btw :D )

You're so right! I'm seriously fighting off UAS right now as I'll need to save my money for a trip at the end of the month. I think you're right about the Concert uke so I'm definitely getting one of those and of course the UU uke when it becomes available...

"My name is Adrian and I am a Ukuholic." <...group responds...> "Hi Adrian..."

Ukulele_Junkie
06-02-2008, 03:34 PM
I have tenor ukes and a concert and also a soprano which i started on. I kinda wish I had a super concert tho. The size just seems natural to me.

ukegirl
06-02-2008, 04:26 PM
I keep going back to the little guys...

UkuLeLesReggAe
06-02-2008, 06:25 PM
assuming that i only own a tenor i guess a tenor... next i want a better tenor then maybe a soprano kala..

<~/UkeDude\~>
06-02-2008, 06:45 PM
I own a Hilo soprano, Lyon concert, and Kamaka Tenor, and an Tenor Mahagony Applause (well it's on it's way to my house at least haha) and personally I prefer the tenor. . .It may be cuz it's a Kamaka and the other two sound horrible compared to it.
I think I like it primarily, cuz I play all kinds of music ranging from Jake, to Aldrine, to praise music, to just about anything xP
So yeah, I tend to use all the frets up haha and then some >_>

MGM
06-02-2008, 10:12 PM
ahhh i relate Adrian ..."Hi Adrian would you like to share this evening what it was like and how it is now?"

grappler
06-02-2008, 10:44 PM
I like a Tenor. Sits perfect
Sopranos dont do it for me at all.. Reason being i just dont like siting in my hands the way it does. It also slides away from my belly.
So i feel funny playing it.

Although i would like to try a concert and have a feel of that and also hear the difference..
I would consider it!

david98116
06-02-2008, 10:55 PM
Depends....I have all sizes except baritone and play them all about even.

jimbeaubjj
06-03-2008, 06:57 AM
Hey Polynesianpop...Jimbeaubjj here...I don't live to far from you and it would be my pleasure to bring ukes for you to try, I only have sopranos and concerts, I prefer the concert size myself...you can contact me here or via email....jimbeaubjj@gmail.com, or youtube if you have an account. My youtube name is jimbeaubjj....

deach
06-03-2008, 09:20 AM
Hey Polynesianpop...Jimbeaubjj here...I don't live to far from you and it would be my pleasure to bring ukes for you to try, I only have sopranos and concerts, I prefer the concert size myself...you can contact me here or via email....jimbeaubjj@gmail.com, or youtube if you have an account. My youtube name is jimbeaubjj....

This is why this place is so cool....

polynesianpop
06-03-2008, 10:28 AM
This is why this place is so cool....

I agree. This board is the best forum I've ever participated in. You guys do a great job moderating this board and the members are top notch.

jimbeaubjj -- Thanks so much for the offer. I'm at work right now so I'll send you a PM later when I get home.

nikolo727
06-03-2008, 10:34 AM
i love tenor or baritone sized ukes.
and i could go for a nice concert too.

it has to be a really nice soprano for me to like it.

i just dont like the noisy sounds of them.

dont get me wrong they are still beautiful just not for me.


i wish i had a baritone uke though.....