View Full Version : An under $75 Pineapple Uke?

04-26-2011, 04:20 AM
I've come across these possibilities with varying reviews and would welcome input from those who might own one:

1) Makala MK-P : generally positive reviews
2) Luna Tatoo : very few reviews
3) Makia PK-55 : very few reviews
4) Johnson UK-140 or UK-160 : no reviews, but had a Johnson soprano that had lousy intonation.
5) Lanikai LU-21P : a few positive reviews; have an LU-21 soprano that's OK, but needed a setup to fix some intonation issues.
6) Mahalo U-320P : generallly not very good reviews on most Mahalo ukes.

Recently bought a Mainland pineapple and really like the fuller tone of the body size. This one I plan to make my 'campfire' uke, so I don't want to sink too much into it, although I may have to up my $$ limit to get one of reasonable playability.

04-26-2011, 04:26 AM
Here is my review of the lunas
In a nutshell, Lunas are inconsistant. make sure you play it before you buy it.
the other that I have experience with is the lanikai. If you buy it, expect to have to lower the nut so that all your chords that use the first fret will not go sharp. I guess these are the issues with less expensive ukes.
I have less experience with Makai, not real cool with sending out review ukes, but all that I have played have been pretty nice.

04-26-2011, 04:27 AM
A Makala with a good set up and strings is a great camp uke...or office uke. Ebay seller p-hill has been posting the Kala KA-P which is a little nicer I am sure (and not with the graphics on it) for around 50 bones lately. I have not bought from them, but I know they are the only place in the world that has them...or at least I believe that.
I have played one Makai- laminate Willow and a cedar top- I absolutely loved it but have not played a pineapple from them

04-26-2011, 04:28 AM
I have a Soprano Luna Tattoo Pineapple and love her to pieces, she's laminate so would not have the fuller sound of a solid body Pineapple, but she does sound different to my other sopranos that are also laminate. I enjoy playing her and didn't have any need for extra setup from the one provided by the eBay store I brought her from. Basically I'd recommend the Luna, cheap enough to not worry about it being a "campfire" Uke, but also good quaility...the tattoo'ing is brilliantly done.

Hope that helps

A better sound sample than mine


04-26-2011, 04:44 AM
A Makala with a good set up and strings is a great camp uke...or office uke. Ebay seller p-hill has been posting the Kala KA-P which is a little nicer I am sure (and not with the graphics on it) for around 50 bones lately. I have not bought from them, but I know they are the only place in the world that has them...or at least I believe that.

I bought a Kala KA-P for my wife from Easy Music Center (http://www.easymusiccenter.com/) while in Honolulu this past February. I believe they had 3 or 4 in stock. I called around town and they were the only ones with KA-Ps in stock. $65 with a case and tuner if I recall. Not sure how much they would charge for shipping. Nice folks there.

04-26-2011, 04:58 AM
I have a Luna Tattoo also. For the price... I love the sound. Granted, its the only pineapple I have ever played. I recommend it!

04-26-2011, 02:58 PM
I don't own any of the ukes listed, but I have played a couple in local shops, and of them I'd recommend the Makala or Makai. I do own 3 other Makalas and thay are all great players for the money (all three were set up by MGM). I have a Lanikai LU-21 but the concert not pineapple, it's also a good player but did need a little tweeking when I got it. I also have a Kala KA-PSS which also plays well but is a bit muted sounding. I recently bought an Oscar Schmidt OU2-P which was a very pleasant surprise, it has a concert scale and after replacing the godawful GHS strings with a set of Aquila's it's one of my favorites take anywhere ukes, and I paid less than $65 with a gig bag! None of them will compare with your Mainland! but as a campfire uke I think any of them will work.

04-26-2011, 06:37 PM
Kala kiwi (http://www.ceciliasmusic.com/product_p/KA-KIWI.htm)for a real conversation piece. Seem pretty tough and have a decent setup.

04-26-2011, 06:40 PM
The only brand I have experience with is Lanikai... I love my LU-21 ^.^ no setup needed, just new strings to fix the intonation. Soo... theres my 0.02 ;)

04-27-2011, 02:43 AM
I have a luna honu, not the pineapple. I just switched the strings from aquilas to martins and it sounds like a much more expensive ukulele. I am imagining the pineapple is similar enough. I also had a Makala Pineapple and put Martin strings on that too. I gave it away but only because I have too many ukes. It was very nice. Paid like forty bucks for it.

04-27-2011, 05:55 AM
I've also played the LU21 pineapple pretty extensively. It's pefectly nice, good value for the money, and the one I play did not have to have the nut slots lowered. It has no intonation issues, a nice tone, and feels good to play.

04-27-2011, 06:09 AM
I've played a few Makais, they were all very nice.

04-29-2011, 12:24 PM
An under $75 Pineapple Uke - ACQUIRED

Thanks for all the input. I finally settled on a new Makai which arrived today and for under $50 shipped. Nice uke, well made with a nice full tone. After replacing the GHS strings with Aquila Nylguts and dressing the nut slots a tad, the intonation is right on, always a big concern with cheaper ukes. Workmanship is clean and the frets are nicely dressed. The friction tuners will never be mistaken for Gotohs but function well and hold tuning. The tone will never be confused with that of my Mainland, but at 1/4 the price it suits my purpose well. Overall I'd have to recommend the uke, especially for the price, as long as you ditch the GHS strings upon arrival.

04-29-2011, 06:08 PM
Nobody laugh, but I picked a $30 Sunlite pineapple uke that when fitted with Aquillas and a little nut filing sounds really good. I'd take the Pepsi challenge with my laminate Kala Soprano any day. It's the beach uke, but there no reason to sound crappy at the beach, ya know?

04-29-2011, 10:37 PM
OMG, sorry to go OT but I HAVE to share! I took the Pepsi challenge at the Los Angeles County Fair 25 years ago I think. I know the difference and prefer Coke. I chose the Coke. THE GIRL SWITCHED THE BOTTLES BEHIND THE PANEL CONCEALING THE BOTTLES! I saw here do it! Then she removed the panel and there was the Pepsi in front of the Coke cup... I said "You switched the bottles", and she said "No, I didn't." I said "Yes you did, I saw you, I picked the Coke". She said "No you didn't, you picked Pepsi", and I still won't drink Pepsi to this day, because it's still crap. Well, I suppose it's still crap, but I'm not sure because I won't drink it because they are lying b*st**ds. :mad: :p

Love ALL pineapples BTW. :love: