View Full Version : Another Concert or a Tenor

06-27-2011, 11:39 AM
I have been liquidating mandolins in order to feed my recently acquired UAS addiction. I currently have an Ohana Pinapple PK 25 G (soprano) and a Kala KA-C (laminated concert). Also a Dolphin (not part of this question). I now have ~$600 and would like to buy either a solid Koa Concert or Tenor. Unsure what to do. I like the concert size and tone. Would I notice a big difference in the Koa from the laminated Mahogany or would it be cool to have a soprano, a concert and a tenor?

I have been playing about 10 days so I really don't have a firm grasp on which way to go (do have many years on the guitar and mandolin to fall back on though)

All opinions welcome. :confused:

06-27-2011, 12:41 PM
Since you have so much experience as a musician, I don't think you'd be happy for long with a stable of only laminates. Lots of nice solid bodies out there. someone got a Mele solid mahogany concert on ebay yesterday for $99.99 with $14 shipping...who'd a thunk it. For $600 you could have gotten solid mahogany pono's, both a concert and a tenor both with Ko'olau hard case, and pickup at various times. If you really want a Koa concert, go for it. You will probably end up with the tenor eventually anyway, or the other way around. You'll get lots of good advice here.....keep your eyes on the UU marketplace and fleamarketmusic Marketplace for the best deals you are likely to find. Been some absolutely amazing ukes here in the last month. If you haven't done it, scroll down 5 or 10 pages of the Marketplace to see what kind of deals regularly appear.

06-27-2011, 01:42 PM
If I were in your shoes I'd try to get to a store (or a uke group) or any place where you can get your hands on a tenor to decide if you like the scale. Then, you will know where to go to get yourself a top notch "main" axe. You may decide concert is really the size for you. You may decide you like the scale length, extra frets, and sound of a tenor. Or you may decide you like the scale length of a tenor but the sound of a concert, in which case you'd want a super concert.

UAS can get pretty expensive but the best cure for it is to figure out exactly what you want in a uke before spending a lot of money.

$600 will almost get you into a nice Hawaiian concert, you're looking around $800 to $900 for a K-brand tenor (more if you want cutaway, etc.) The nice thing about the "K-brands" is you'll probably have permanently scratched your itch for ukueles at least in that size. However, for half as much you can still get into a very good all solid uke like a Mainland.

Finally, don't overlook the used market. The marketplace here and at fleamarketmusic often has some pretty good deals. If you get really lucky you might even get into a k-brand tenor for around $600, though that would be an unusually good deal.

Again, though, if at all possible get yourself to someplace where you can try out a number of different types of ukes to decide what you want. I made the "mistake" of buying a KoAloha concert before I realized that I love the concert scale but prefer the sound of a soprano body, so I ended up buying a KoAloha longneck soprano, too, before my UAS itch was permanently scratched.


mm stan
06-27-2011, 02:37 PM
Aloha Mike,
traveled that same road man....sold all my guitars to feed my ukulele addiction..lol best thing is to try some and find what you like in sound and feel...playability and comfort..everyone is different..
Personal preference...try all types of woods too..there are some good music shope where you live and uke builders...Balck Bear..etc..

06-27-2011, 04:00 PM
If I were in your shoes I'd try to get to a store (or a uke group) or any place where you can get your hands on a tenor to decide if you like the scale.
I totally agree. If you decide you like the scale, maybe get something in a comparable price range to the concert you already have, another Kala laminate, maybe? Give it some time with both sizes before you decide which one you want to upgrade.

I wouldn't drop $600 on a tenor until you're totally convinced that's the way you want to go. You can always sell your used cheaper one in the Marketplace here. :)