View Full Version : Cole Clark Ukes

06-15-2008, 12:53 PM
So, has anyone played any of them? I got to play a Jack Tenor at the store the other day... and I thought it was just awesome... but then again, I only have my 80$ ukulele to compare to, so I thought I'd see what other people have to say. It cost 1099$ Canadian at the store. I want it, but can't afford it, haha..

06-15-2008, 03:06 PM
These ukes are built by a guitar builder, who now tries to make ukes. I am sure that this uke sounds good compared to your uke, but compared to many others...

I don't like to bag brands, but $1099 is a lot of money, which you want to spend wisely...

You could get a lot of all-solid ukes for far less.

For the same money you can get a nice Hawaiian uke, a custom built uke, a Kiwaya, or three all-solid Chinese ukes...

Also, these ukes don't hold their value, just check second hand and auction sites in Australia if you want one still...much cheaper!

06-16-2008, 02:29 AM
Thanks. Now I know

01-26-2009, 12:27 PM
I was really into the guitar-thing the last weeks. I searched everywhere for a cool western guitar. By accident, I got intodruced to "Jack Johnsons Guitar": Cole Clark. I really love Jack Johnson, hes my god :D
Anyway... I heard, that Cole Clark guitars would beat Martins and Taylors by far. They even beat Maton (some guy, who worked for Maton, is now signed by Cole Clark).
Then, I saw the Cole Clark Ukuleles. Really beautiful instruments (I can only tell about the pictures I saw). Maybe somebody in here knows more about this Ukuleles. They are kind of expensive (I saw one for around 400 bugs on a Australian Website), so why shouldnt they be good, I guess... But maybe they are really excellent like the guitars of Cole Clark.
Here in Germany, its nearly impossible to buy a Cole Clark. Maybe its different over there in the US or Hawaii.

Video with Soundexample(Youtube) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbhUgotFFCU)

Ukulele Lady 1 (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ul1.asp)
Ukulele Lady 2 (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ul2.asp)
Ukulele Lady 3 (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ul3.asp)
Jack Tenor (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ujt.asp)

I love the use of timber-wood.
All these Ukes look beautiful to me. If I was a Tenor-Player, the Jack Tenor would really be a dream to me. Dark wood with Cutaway. So, what do you guys thing about these Ukuleles and maybe somebody can me tell more about them. Would be great.

(in German:)

Hallo Leute. In letzter Zeit habe ich mich etwas in die Welt der Westerngitarren vertieft. Irgendwann bin ich dann auch auf die Gitarre von Jack Johnson (mein Gott :D) gestoßen: Cole Clark. Er spielt meistens Fat Lady 1 oder 2. Das nur mal so nebenbei. Cole Clark soll alle Martins und Taylors in den Schatten stellen und auch Maton schlagen. Nun habe ich auch eine Cole Clark Ukulele entdeckt. Nicht ganz billig, das sollte gesagt sein, aber vielleicht wirklich wirklich gut?! Habe sie auch nur auf einer Australischen Website gefunden für ca 400 Dolar. So wie die Cole Clark Gitarren sind die Ukulelen wohl in Deutschland nicht/schwer zu bekommen. Vielleicht kann mir da einer unserer Händler weiterhelfen.

Video mit Soundbeispiel (Youtube) (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JbhUgotFFCU)

Ukulele Lady 1 (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ul1.asp)
Ukulele Lady 2 (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ul2.asp)
Ukulele Lady 3 (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ul3.asp)
Jack Tenor (http://www.coleclarkguitars.com/product_ujt.asp)

Also vom Aussehen her finde ich sie wunderschön. Wenn ich ein Tenorspieler wäre, fände ich auch die Tenorukulele mit dem Cutaway atemberaubend.

Wie findet ihr die Ukulelen? Treffen sie euren Geschmack? Schreibt mal :-)

01-29-2009, 08:51 PM
This might be toooo late, but...

I own the expensive UL3 - solid Indian Rosewood, and I haven't heard a uke that sounds better (I have an Ohana soprano and an Ayers soprano, both all solid mahogany.) The UL1 (solid blackwood) can be bought in Australia for just under $500 new.

02-13-2009, 05:33 PM
I know nothing of their ukuleles, but I just got my awesome shirt that I won from the Undies show!


Very nice shirt! Thanks guys!

But the Cole Clark pickup system seems pretty cool. What is this timber though? I always thought that was just a general word for wood.

02-14-2009, 05:31 AM
I was at the folk centre in Ottawa last August and played with a Cole Clark uke they had. Tenor or concert - can't recall the size, but not soprano. It was okay - felt and sounded nice, well made, but didn't impress me enough to spend $1,100 CAD on it at the time. But I know more about ukes now. I plan to revisit the shop this summer when I'm in Ottawa for a conference, and will take a look to see if it's still there. Might be worth a second thought. I know their guitars get very good reviews.

Does anyone here own one?

03-17-2009, 05:17 AM
I have a cole clark UL1 (concert size) and a Jack tenor (tenor size). I have to say that the concert size one is a really good uke (I also own a kamaka HF-3 tenor, a koaloha soprano and a RISA). It's well built, the action is perfect. Very light body and very easy to play. It comes with kamaka strings which sounds very balanced and great for finger style (not a big fan of the aquila strings, they are too bright which is fine for strumming). The sound is crispy, warm and punchy. Cole clark did a great job on its concert sized uke.

However, I don like their Jack Tenor~~~. The acoustic sound is terrible~, the volume is too low with tiny attack. It seems that the soundboard couldn't vibrate properly because of the thick timber and its strong bracing... It's like playing a solid body electric ukulele. All of these are probably a result of their more attention on the plugged-in sound. The pick up system is great with 1 under saddle pickup and 1 face brace sensor. It is even rechargeable as it would be more difficult to change the battery for a ukulele. The plugged-in sound is powerful. Very warm and woody sound, thanks to the face brace sensor.

If u r in Australia, a $500 cole clark UL1 is a good choice.

I have used both ukes in some of my recordings, feel free to listen and compare.

UkuWind on CrunchyTrain (http://www.garageband.com/mp3player?|pe1|S8LTM0LdsaSjYFO1ZGk) In this piece, I used the cole clark UL1 concert size uke. I recorded it by using a DiMarzio stick-on pickup.

Little Flower's Party (http://www.garageband.com/mp3player?|pe1|S8LTM0LdsaSgYVixY28) In this I played the Cole Clark Jack Tenor. No mics were used, direct from it's pickup.

03-17-2009, 06:36 AM
Tried one at NAMM this year and wasn't very impressed. There are a lot of other instruments out there in $1000 price range that sound better.

03-17-2009, 10:28 AM
I went to the Ottawa's folk store last week or 2 weeks ago, they said they sold it. I want to know who bought it...

03-18-2009, 03:55 AM
Unfortunately, many reviews are biased because they are written by people who own that particular instrument (and therefore love it).

So it is, interesting to see that littlesmall said of his (her?) own instrument that it is not particularly good acoustically.

As I run a music store I will not publicly say what I really think about brands, particularly if it is not really favourable. I will suffice by saying make sure you compare and try a lot of different ukes (or guitars for that matter) before you make your decision.

You gotta ask yourself, it is good or bad and compared to what? Sure it'll be better than a Lanikai or so, but is it really better than say, a Hawaiian uke, Kiwaya etc? If you still think it is worth the money after comparing these ukes, then sure, go for it!

Also, where have you ever seen an all-solid rosewood instrument? Is rosewood really suitable as a tonewood on the top?

03-24-2010, 09:48 PM
Hi everyone, i am a newbie, and just got seriously into the uke 6 months ago, i was a guitar player, well, still is of cos. Anyway, i love and have a great appreciation for acoustic instrument, atm my main gtr are an om-28 marquis, d-28marq.madagascar act gtr, and gibson les paul deluxe. ele gtr. For ukulele, i own 3 tenors, a pono solid mahagony tenor, koolau solid koa tenor, and a cole clark jack tenor 2ac( blackwood top and back, with rosewod side).
I have tried nearly all cole clark ukes as i live in sydney, Aus, and there's alot of cole clark stuff goin on here. Mainly act gtr i would say, and from time to time shops do stock a few cole clark ukes. but not as many as their act gtr.
Here are my thoughts:

Cole clark ul1: solid blackwood construction , concert size
This ukes are kind of average sounding, not loud, and can be abit muddy. Overall not a bad uke, but nothing special, it doesn't have those lute/harp like warm timber a great uke have. Yes its solid construction, and all aussie wood.
Ul2-spruce top and queensland maple back and size(all solid). This is a louder uke then the blackwood ul1, and the maple is a perfect combination with nylon string. It sounded clean, and notes have better separation, and sustain was fuller. A fantastic uke that compets very well with my koolau acoustically.

now the jack tenor 2ac, most would think i bought it, so it should be the best one:
Wrong, acoustically, it is slightly lower in volumn then the ul2, and i do prefer the spruce top/maple combination. And as some user have pointed out, it does seems slightly lower in volumn, and its true. But the timber is still kind of clean and warm. However, the good feature of this uke comes to the neck, pickup, and overall body design.

If your a longtime guitarist like me, you will found the jack tenors neck the best neck on any uke,its slightly thicker then most std uke neck and chunkier, and as soon as i played it, i knew why it have a heavier price tag. The pickup system is no doubt the best you can posibly get on a uke, combining undersaddle, and body transducer, and with on board tone shaping eq, knobs for balance btw the 2 pickup, and volumn as well .plus the rechargeable battery makes it a big plus, it means the uke is free from carrying batteries, again striping off any unncesary weight.

Comparing the jt2ac with my pono and koolau, it is definately not as loud, but the jt2ac have a much better neck, and pickup. I have installed the k&k big shot on both the pono/koolau, and it sounded prety good, but still not close to what the jt2ac can offer. K&k pickup are very pure, kind of like a mixture of condensor, and dynamic mic sound. Overall, i will be keeping my koolau for recording, and cole clark jt2ac for live playing, as is hard to find a uke which can cross over btw eletric uke, and acoustic. So if your after a plug and play uke which have a comfortable, versatile neck, consider the cole clark, and if you want just pure uke beauty, cosider a traditional hawiian uke like koolau.


03-25-2010, 02:23 AM
Very sensible review Sam. It's of course about purpose of the instrument as well and those CC pickups are indeed great. It probably the strength in all of their acoustic instruments. As for feel, well that is so personal. I am a sucker for slim necks, but as you said, guitarists often like the chunckier necks on ukes.

03-25-2010, 02:52 AM
Tried their Tenor in a store. Nice sound, but overbuilt. Projection not so good.

07-25-2010, 10:16 PM
There is a dealer in israel who holds cole clark guitars.
I have tried them in the shop and they are AWESOME guitars.
When I asked them for pricing of the ukuleles, I got something similar to the prices mentioned here.
Since they do not hold the ukes regularly, I have to commit on buying in advance...
With all due respect, this is a little bit too much for betting on a uke I cannot hear and try.
I'd rather get a solid wood Chinese (koa pili koko? kala? lanikai) or even Hawaiian made uke for less.