View Full Version : If you were to have only one (1) ukulele

10-17-2010, 02:26 PM
What would you have? Assume you are willing to spend 600-800 dollars or less. You play daily (or almost daily) and you don't play professionally. You prefer fingerpicking. Pick-up is a maybe but you don't own an amp. Either high quality friction or geared tuners would be OK.

10-17-2010, 02:45 PM
In the low-to-middle price-range, I'd take the Ohana CK-300G. Solid Hawaiian Koa and a solid performer to boot. It is great for finger-picking. Higher price-range, I'd go with a KoAloha concert.

10-17-2010, 02:55 PM
If I could only have one ukulele, I'd probably pick the concert size. Given the $800 ceiling, I'd go with an MP style 4 concert if he's willing to build one with 18 frets. Otherwise a KoAloha concert.

10-17-2010, 03:15 PM
A factory second KoAloha perhaps?

Hippie Dribble
10-17-2010, 03:23 PM
a Kamaka soprano or LoPrinzi concert

10-17-2010, 03:35 PM
800.00 = A Mainland Cedar Tenor and a Mainland Concert Mahogany, both with cases and pickups - maybe even an LR Baggs Paracoustic DI... That's a semi-pro rig for not that much swag, really. But all the brands and the "Ks" of course, once you past 600.00, offer great ukes that will last a lifetime when cared for!

10-17-2010, 05:25 PM
My Kamaka pineapple-- I wouldn't trade it for the world!

10-17-2010, 05:42 PM
It's a ridiculous question, but if that were the case, I'd have to go with a cheap uke that I wouldn't mind banging up. I'd go with a Makala Dolphin.

10-17-2010, 05:52 PM
My Kamaka pineapple-- I wouldn't trade it for the world!

Yeah. Natalie's pineapple would be my choice too! I love that thing and sure wish one would come my way, in my price range, soon :)

Hmmmm... realistically though. I play daily, not professionally, and increasingly, fingerpicking and chord soloing rather than strumming. The main issue I've run into is buying an instrument that has more than 12 frets. With 14 frets, my Kamaka HF-1 soprano has been my daily player since the day it arrived, and I got it second-hand, with installed pickup, for under $500. But even with my little hands, getting to those high notes can be a challenge, so I have a feeling that a week from now after my Kamaka HF-2 Concert arrives I'd make that my first choice if I could have only one. Also bought used, it fell in the lower end of your price range.

10-17-2010, 07:45 PM
I'd probably go with a factory second KoAloha Concert Sceptre. I love the Tenor Sceptre, but, like George, I also love the concert scale. The ironic part is that I don't own one yet. XD

I'll work on that...

10-18-2010, 03:23 AM
It's a ridiculous question, but if that were the case, I'd have to go with a cheap uke that I wouldn't mind banging up. I'd go with a Makala Dolphin.

Perhaps I should run questions by you first to avoid 'ridiculous' future posts? Really...

Hippie Dribble
10-18-2010, 03:26 AM
Perhaps I should run questions by you first to avoid 'ridiculous' future posts? Really...

couldn't have been that ridiculous...he still felt a compulsion to answer it!!!! :)

10-18-2010, 04:11 AM
If it were to be one of the ones I actually own it would be my Ohana SK35. I play it the most, and it is just a good simple uke.

If I were to choose one? It would be the KoAloha Pikake soprano. Well, because if I could ever afford the money for a KoAloha, I would spend it with them because I just like those people, and who they are, and what they are all about. As far as model, well, because it is a simple traditional uke.

10-18-2010, 05:30 AM
it would be either this one


or a koaloha factory second tenor

10-18-2010, 06:23 AM
I technically do only have one ukulele - I'm selling to because I don't play then, the one in the car is simply for the rare time I either forget my uke or stumble across some sing-a-round whilst out somewhere, and my other uke was my first "proper", bought by my parents.

So in effect my Mainland is my only uke, and I'm extremely pleased with it. If I had more money then I would certainly buy a Mya-Moe, tho.

10-18-2010, 06:28 AM
My Kamaka tenor is the finest instrument I've ever played. Except one of James Hill's G Strings, I suppose.

10-18-2010, 07:06 AM
For the price range, I'd have to stick with a KoAloha concert ukulele. There is a lot to love about them.
I'd be interested in a 'factory second' concert Scepter.
On a side note, I'm also interested to see how many folks are purchasing these 'seconds' from any of the manufacturers? And opinions on same?

10-18-2010, 07:43 AM
Kamaka soprano.

Or maybe a Mya-Mo mango super-soprano.

10-18-2010, 08:02 AM
Mya-Mo mango super-soprano.

Okay, for $800 I'm interested.

10-18-2010, 08:14 AM
I don't think I've spent $800 on ukes since I started playing and have 8 playable ukes and 6 or so in various states of repair/restoration so I think I'll stick with what I've got!
But as to your question, if I had to buy just one in that price range it would probably be a Koaloha concert, super concert, or tenor.

10-18-2010, 08:14 AM
That is a hard hard question...
I've already got it down to 3 ukes, but one, oh man, that is cruel.

It would either be my Larrivee spruce and mahogany satin soprano strung with low G, or my Larrivee koa gloss soprano strung re-entrant...

The former cost $465 new way back when, and the latter cost $800 with hardshell case that I just bought in July from elderly.com

Oh dear... these are my children, you know.

10-18-2010, 10:06 AM
I wouldnt actually go with a pricey model. As much as I like fancy ukes, I would miss not having a uke in the car, or to take camping or play on the beach.

As such, there is no doubt that I would choose a Flea or a Fluke - bombproof mixed with nice tone, great volume and awesome setup.

BadLands Bart
10-18-2010, 10:40 AM
Koaloha concert or a Kamaka concert.....oh the agony of it all!!! :confused:

10-18-2010, 10:55 AM
I would think that in that price range, a number of the responses will be the ukulele that the individual already has or will have. I am no exception.

Both of my ukuleles were on the lower end of your price range and I like them for fingerpicking. Tuned to C with Aquilas they are high tension at 18 inch scale, which can be a little tough on the fingers but the increased tension does add to the sustain and ring. The longer scale and with the little wider string spacing gives a little more fingering room.

For my personal taste I like them better than most production ukuleles I tested in that price range and beyond. Keep in mind that I have been tweaking them for a while now and since I have gotten used to higher tension, sometimes the lower tension doesn't feel right. And I did buy another one this past May.

It's funny, the 2007 ukulele is my everyday player, but I like the sound of the 2010 better.


mm stan
10-18-2010, 11:08 AM
Aloha Rreffner,
You don't mention how long you've been playing or your skill level...could it be a year or so, if you enjoy fingerpicking....I've have alot of ukuleles, and often asked myself the same questions..
You know, I've got cheap ukes, expensive ukes, and very expensive ukes..but when I'm home playing by myself....i really enjoy my first uke...and it stands up to those expensive ones too..
it might not have the deep rich tones or crisp highs...but I enjoy it more....go figure!!! it's a Rogue soprano, if you're wondering....sold only at Musician's friend and their sister company
Music 123....it's their exclusive...get this, it stands up to my most expensive ukes...and for only $24.99 plus shipping ...for that price...it's dam worth trying, arn't you curious????MM Stan..
Your true feelings when you're by yourself at home playing, and you choose this one..no glamor or showing off to others...but just for your enjoyment..

10-18-2010, 11:33 AM
I have three Ukuleles, one cheap one (though with Aquila strings people couldn't always tell!), an Ohana and a Luna Pineapple...if I had to choose one of those, it would be the pineapple, I love the sound Rhea makes, but it could just be because she's my newest, I love them all to be honest and you'll probably find that it's not just one that will suit your needs, but a combination of a few, I plan to stop at three, but who knows with UAS running rampant on these forums!

10-18-2010, 12:58 PM
I'd go with either a Kamaka or KoAloha. I prefer tenor scale, but in that price range it would have to be used.

10-19-2010, 03:42 AM
That would be a tough choice as I have four to choose from in that price range. A used (barely) Collings T1 tenor, a used (barely) KoAloha crown bridge tenor, a factory second concert sceptre, and a KoAloha pikake concert. Even though I prefer the tenor scale, the pikake concert, strung with Worth browns, is as close to the perfect uke in sound and build quality as you can get.

10-20-2010, 12:51 PM
Tenor fluke

Miss Michele
10-20-2010, 05:14 PM
When I get 600-800 dollars to spend on a uke, I will let you know! lol