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View Full Version : Yamaha FINALLY bringing the Guitalele to the US



ChiyoDad
01-17-2011, 06:58 AM
I was down at NAMM and briefly talked to the Yamaha reps. The GL-1 Guitalele is finally coming to US retailers. Not clear exactly when but it will be early 2011. The rep I spoke to didn't know what the street price would be.

That explains why the Canadian retailers had been discouraged from selling them to us across the border.

NatalieS
01-17-2011, 08:14 AM
I hope they make the Mickey Mouse one that was produced overseas. If so, I seriously might have to get one!

KevinV
01-17-2011, 11:56 AM
I'll be ordering as soon as MGM has them in stock and can give it his once over before it ships.

Bosconian91
01-17-2011, 12:54 PM
This is good news - a guitalele for around $100 would be awesome! Yamaha makes good products that are priced well. I just hope they start making ukuleles once again.

Nuprin
01-17-2011, 01:31 PM
The rep I spoke to didn't know what the street price would be.

Not sure how accurate but my boss (who just got back from NAMM) was told $99. He's already trying to decide how many to get for the store. I told him to add one to the number as I'll definitely want one as well!

itsme
01-17-2011, 04:15 PM
That's great news! :)

What's ironic is I really wanted a guitalele and then I won a uke in a drawing. Ukes have satisfied my desire for small and portable, so now I'm not so sure I really even want a guitalele.

GVlog
01-18-2011, 02:02 PM
Ukes have satisfied my desire for small and portable, so now I'm not so sure I really even want a guitalele.
Sure you do. Just think of all the 6-course lute pieces you can now play. :)

SweetWaterBlue
01-18-2011, 02:53 PM
That's great news! :)

What's ironic is I really wanted a guitalele and then I won a uke in a drawing. Ukes have satisfied my desire for small and portable, so now I'm not so sure I really even want a guitalele.

That's funny - I am in somewhat the same boat as you. The guitalele actually led me to the uke, because before I got a uke, I wanted a guitalele. I considered getting one from Canada, but before I did, I ended up buying a Kala tenor in a local store. Little did I know where that was going to lead. I already had an old classical guitar, but had never bothered to replace the broken strings. The full size guitar is just too big to feel comfortable with. About 6 months after buying the uke, I bought a cedar top acoustic guitar to use for accompanying the uke. I believe if the guitarlele was available locally when I bought the guitar, I might have ended up with one. The guitalele is still a really cool little guitar though, so who knows?

itsme
01-18-2011, 06:25 PM
Sure you do. Just think of all the 6-course lute pieces you can now play. :)
I do have two full-sized handmade classical guitars. ;)


That's funny - I am in somewhat the same boat as you. The guitalele actually led me to the uke, because before I got a uke, I wanted a guitalele. I considered getting one from Canada, but before I did, I ended up buying a Kala tenor in a local store. Little did I know where that was going to lead. I already had an old classical guitar, but had never bothered to replace the broken strings. The full size guitar is just too big to feel comfortable with. About 6 months after buying the uke, I bought a cedar top acoustic guitar to use for accompanying the uke. I believe if the guitarlele was available locally when I bought the guitar, I might have ended up with one. The guitalele is still a really cool little guitar though, so who knows?
I'm with you here. I might still eventually get one, but I do have the aforementioned "real" CGs and ukes to satisfy me for other purposes.

GVlog
01-19-2011, 06:45 PM
I do have two full-sized handmade classical guitars. ;)

Ah, but they sound like classical guitars with their resonance and sustain! :D

It looks like Yamaha is just bringing the basic GL1. If I get one of these, I'll probably want to install a pickup and amp.




http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ap-Gvqaq80I


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zU3duKdIwM

Richie23
01-20-2011, 01:07 AM
I don't know if its available in the US or outside Europe, but there is an alternative (and a cheaper one) to the Yamaha Guitarlele, which come from none other than Mahalo.
I looked, played, and compared the Yamaha Guitarlele with the Mahalo Ukulele-Guitar before buying, and to be honest, the Mahalo sounded and played better, and felt more balanced to hold. To me, the body shape was more uke, and the neck felt less chunky and awkward than the Yamaha.

It comes in either steel strung

http://www.dangleberrymusic.co.uk/p-71-mahalo-black-childrens-acoustic-guitar-12-size-ukulele-guitar-steel-string-travel-guitar.aspx

or Nylon

http://www.dangleberrymusic.co.uk/p-101-mahalo-black-childrens-acoustic-ukulele-guitar-12-size-acoustic-guitar-nylon-string.aspx

and in loads of colours. The price here in the UK seems to be between 25 - 40 depending on whether its steel or nylon, and what colour it is.

On getting mine, I ditched the cheapo strings it came with, and changed for a set of Ultra High Tension D'Addario J44 nylon strings, and tuned it EADGBE, but you could just as easily put low tension strings on and tune it up 5 (to A-D-G-C-E-A) to retain the Uke like sound and chords.

jgeary
01-20-2011, 08:34 AM
Aloha,
I'm so bummed. I just so ordered my Yamaha guitalele from the Rock Shop in Germany 2 weeks ago. Probably no fault of theirs, but I haven't heard anything regarding where my guitalele is in 8 days. As far as I can tell it's in Frankfurt, stuck in customs. I'm not complaining - it's just the way it goes with International shipping these days. Not sure when to expect it....:(
Had I known I could buy one from a dealer in the U.S. I would've waited, for sure.... *** sigh***
Jill
San Diego

funnyguy0804
01-20-2011, 02:37 PM
I don't know if its available in the US or outside Europe, but there is an alternative (and a cheaper one) to the Yamaha Guitarlele, which come from none other than Mahalo.
I looked, played, and compared the Yamaha Guitarlele with the Mahalo Ukulele-Guitar before buying, and to be honest, the Mahalo sounded and played better, and felt more balanced to hold. To me, the body shape was more uke, and the neck felt less chunky and awkward than the Yamaha.

It comes in either steel strung

http://www.dangleberrymusic.co.uk/p-71-mahalo-black-childrens-acoustic-guitar-12-size-ukulele-guitar-steel-string-travel-guitar.aspx

or Nylon

http://www.dangleberrymusic.co.uk/p-101-mahalo-black-childrens-acoustic-ukulele-guitar-12-size-acoustic-guitar-nylon-string.aspx

and in loads of colours. The price here in the UK seems to be between 25 - 40 depending on whether its steel or nylon, and what colour it is.

On getting mine, I ditched the cheapo strings it came with, and changed for a set of Ultra High Tension D'Addario J44 nylon strings, and tuned it EADGBE, but you could just as easily put low tension strings on and tune it up 5 (to A-D-G-C-E-A) to retain the Uke like sound and chords.

I agree! I've managed to play Yamaha's Guitalele, a friend of mine bought it in Taiwan. Played it, and didn't like the sound of it. I tuned it to ADGCEA, tough in the tune of C but you need to play in G (in guitar fingering). Overall it didn't really please me, but is really something you could show to the crowd! :)

experimentjon
01-20-2011, 07:33 PM
That's good news that they're bringing it over here. Now people don't have to give in to the price gougers. It always bewildered me why they didn't bring it over when there was pretty strong niche demand for it.

Doc_J
01-22-2011, 01:12 AM
OK Folks, it looks like the Yamaha GL-1 Guitalele is here in the US...NOW.
I just saw a couple US listings on ebay for $99-$130 shipped.

Paul Cote
01-22-2011, 05:04 AM
yeah someone had posted on underground the mahalo sounded better but the mahalo has 19 inch string length vs. the guitalele 17" tenor length plus the reviews for the mahalo on amazon were not so good. Sounds like yamaha setup is better etc.

Paul Cote
01-22-2011, 05:08 AM
What is the difference between a guitalele and a half size classical guitar?

BobN
01-22-2011, 07:17 AM
I ordered a Mahalo from here:
http://www.music-hut.com/mhlkllgtrs.htm
$39.99 + $5 shipping.
I don't expect much, but it may be a fun project getting it set up.

Doc_J
01-22-2011, 09:12 AM
What is the difference between a guitalele and a half size classical guitar?

The Yamaha 1/2 size guitar is 21" scale and standard guitar or a but higher tuning, while the guitalele is 17" (tenor) scale and ADGCEA tuning.

tonyyyy
01-22-2011, 09:58 AM
yeah someone had posted on underground the mahalo sounded better but the mahalo has 19 inch string length vs. the guitalele 17" tenor length plus the reviews for the mahalo on amazon were not so good. Sounds like yamaha setup is better etc.

I bought the yamaha guitarlele and it certainly is attractive and well made, and a delight to play. The fingerboard doesnt feel too crowded with the 6 strings

Paul Cote
01-22-2011, 10:28 AM
curious if you would use Fluorocarbons and some select classical strings with it for the top three strings?

Doc_J
01-22-2011, 12:03 PM
curious if you would use Fluorocarbons and some select classical strings with it for the top three strings?

I am not sure what folks do for strings, combine tenor uke and AD classical guitar strings or buy requinto guitar string sets. The requinto guitar has the same tuning (ADGcea) but has a longer scale (about 21 inches). D'addario has requinto guitar sets.

Richie23
01-22-2011, 12:29 PM
I bought a Mahalo Ukulele-Guitar, which is pretty similar to the Yamaha (slightly longer scale). I tried various combinations of strings, including Aquilas (both baritone & tenor) but eventually settled on a combination of D'Addario Pro-Arte classical's in various tensions, stringing it ADGCEA (up a fifth, so like a uke). It now projects really well, has better resonance, and feels like the strings are at the right tension.

So, I'm using...

A - Di'Addario Pro-Arte Classical Guitar, EJ44, Extra Hard Tension
D - Di'Addario Pro-Arte Classical Guitar, EJ44, Extra Hard Tension
G - Di'Addario Pro-Arte Classical Guitar, EJ44, Extra Hard Tension
C - D'Addario Pro-Arte Classical Guitar, EJ46, Hard Tension
E - D'Addario Pro-Arte Classical Guitar, EJ46, Hard Tension
A - D'Addario Pro-Arte Classical Guitar, EJ46, Hard Tension

This seems to offer the best sound, tension and feel, and would also work on the Yamaha Guitarlele in my opinion.

Richie23
01-22-2011, 12:44 PM
yeah someone had posted on underground the mahalo sounded better but the mahalo has 19 inch string length vs. the guitalele 17" tenor length plus the reviews for the mahalo on amazon were not so good. Sounds like yamaha setup is better etc.

At the end of the day, both instruments are at the bottom of the pile when it comes to quality control, set up, etc etc. Don't expect a Pono or Mele at these rock bottom prices. My Mahalo was bought with that in mind, and I find it fun, and it sounds ok too. I think I spent more on finding the best strings for it than it cost to buy! I did try both instruments before buying, and the Yamaha did not justify the extra cost, which in the UK was about 15 more. That's not much I know, but I just wanted something fun, cheap, and the Mahalo ticked the box in terms of looks (I bought the shiny black nylon stringed one)

ichadwick
01-22-2011, 01:55 PM
That explains why the Canadian retailers had been discouraged from selling them to us across the border.
Not the real reason. You have Sarah Palin, we have GL-1s. Seemed like a fair trade. Hope this doesn't mean we have to get more Palin in our lives in trade....

SailingUke
01-24-2011, 12:11 PM
I just played one (and only one) at a local dealer. It is by no means a D-VI, but for the price it was really nice.
I would have bought it had I not already had a D-VI.

GVlog
01-26-2011, 07:07 PM
Ho man! When it rains it pours.

Cordoba is also competing for your Guitalele dollars with their incoming Guilele! The specs look promising but it's still in the pre-market (prototype) stage.

And the default tuning is EADGBE? The string tension must feel really light.

http://cordobaguitars.com/guilele


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_B1rWVW7TIU


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXetyyAB8GI

BobN
01-29-2011, 06:24 AM
I ordered a Mahalo from here:
http://www.music-hut.com/mhlkllgtrs.htm
$39.99 + $5 shipping.
I don't expect much, but it may be a fun project getting it set up.

I received it in the mail today.
The strings were slack.
Since the strings were slack, I planned on gradually getting it up to tune. I tried tuning it to regular guitar tuning edagba.
I could hear it creaking, then the bridge popped off.
http://img810.imageshack.us/img810/2571/mahalo.th.jpg

No wood pulled apart, just globs of glue.
When I get a chance to repair it, I post how it sounds.

Lori
01-29-2011, 07:43 AM
I received it in the mail today.
The strings were slack.
Since the strings were slack, I planned on gradually getting it up to tune. I tried tuning it to regular guitar tuning edagba.
I could hear it creaking, then the bridge popped off.
http://img810.imageshack.us/img810/2571/mahalo.th.jpg


No wood pulled apart, just globs of glue.
When I get a chance to repair it, I post how it sounds.
That must have been kind of scary! Make sure the glue is really set before you restring. BTW - Guitar tuning is edagbe
–Lori

GVlog
01-29-2011, 12:13 PM
BTW - Guitar tuning is edagbe
Actually, it's EADGBE.