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NYG010
07-05-2011, 04:05 PM
So I recieved my Fender Nohea about 10 days ago and at first I was a little boy on christmas tearing up that UPS box to open my beautiful uke. It sounded amazing to me..I'm sitting here now playing it and I must say I am not FULLY satisfied. I feel as if the tone is dull and or getting duller (if that makes sense!). I'm thinking of switching up to my original choice of the Solid Mango Makai, however people tell me solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is. Any suggestions anyone?, am I going crazy?

Uke Republic
07-05-2011, 04:09 PM
I can say the Makai mango sound great.

Rzr
07-05-2011, 04:10 PM
What kind of strings came on it?

SuzukHammer
07-05-2011, 04:10 PM
So I recieved my Fender Nohea about 10 days ago and at first I was a little boy on christmas tearing up that UPS box to open my beautiful uke. It sounded amazing to me..I'm sitting here now playing it and I must say I am not FULLY satisfied. I feel as if the tone is dull and or getting duller (if that makes sense!). I'm thinking of switching up to my original choice of the Solid Mango Makai, however people tell me solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is. Any suggestions anyone?, am I going crazy?

I didn't care much for the fender either. I tried to give it away to one son and that son returned it. haha.

RichM
07-05-2011, 04:15 PM
So I recieved my Fender Nohea about 10 days ago and at first I was a little boy on christmas tearing up that UPS box to open my beautiful uke. It sounded amazing to me..I'm sitting here now playing it and I must say I am not FULLY satisfied. I feel as if the tone is dull and or getting duller (if that makes sense!). I'm thinking of switching up to my original choice of the Solid Mango Makai, however people tell me solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is. Any suggestions anyone?, am I going crazy?

Can't comment on the Fender nor the Makai, having played neither. However, the people who told you that "solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is"-- well, you should stop listening to those people. All other things being equal, solid wood is likely to be more resonant than laminate, and high gloss finish should at best have no impact on the tone, and at worst (when it's applied with a trowel, as it often is on inexpensive instruments) may actually dull resonance.

PhilUSAFRet
07-05-2011, 04:17 PM
Based on the Fender website, it came with Aquilas with a wound c string. Aquilas usually make laminate ukes sound about as good as they are going to. Did you buy it from a place that does set ups on their ukes? May need an inspection to see it it's set up properly. Maybe try some Ko'olau Alohi low g's before you give up on it....or if you are desperately unhappy, return it and eat the postage.

NYG010
07-05-2011, 04:21 PM
Can't comment on the Fender nor the Makai, having played neither. However, the people who told you that "solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is"-- well, you should stop listening to those people. All other things being equal, solid wood is likely to be more resonant than laminate, and high gloss finish should at best have no impact on the tone, and at worst (when it's applied with a trowel, as it often is on inexpensive instruments) may actually dull resonance.

Haha this reply was actually from a Guitar Center sales person...Anyone have any other opinions?? The Fender came with Nylguts..

mm stan
07-05-2011, 04:57 PM
I have a oiled solid wood uke and it sings....resonation and substain.....who says they don't sound good without gloss....

ItsAMeCasey
07-05-2011, 05:02 PM
Solid wood instruments are always going to be of better quality than laminates. I'm not gonna go into deep detail because RichM pretty much nailed it, but if your uke is sounding dull then I would recommend switching to some aquila strings as the fastest fix. If your uke is already sporting said strings then I guess it's just not a very good sounding instrument as aquilas usually bring out the best in laminates. Also I've learned that more often than not Guitar Center Sales men do not know what they're talking about when it comes to ukes! A guitar salesman told me that buzzing is common on all ukuleles just to get me to buy one! I think If you're gonna buy a uke you should buy it from a place that specializes in ukes!

NYG010
07-05-2011, 05:17 PM
I can say the Makai mango sound great.
Have you heard one in person? Do you have one? I'm trying to find someone who does! Thanks for the help and information guys. Again you all are quick on the trigger to answer my dying need questions! thanks.

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 05:28 PM
Haha this reply was actually from a Guitar Center sales person...Anyone have any other opinions?? The Fender came with Nylguts..

that is b/c he wanted you to buy that uke:) Contact ukerepublic and get a makai. Do NOT go through Guitar Center (you can if you want but i wouldn't).

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 05:29 PM
Have you heard one in person? Do you have one? I'm trying to find someone who does! Thanks for the help and information guys. Again you all are quick on the trigger to answer my dying need questions! thanks.

He has, he does (probably more than one) and you have:)
Mike is www.ukerepublic.com

or link to makai ones http://cargo.ukerepublic.com/category/makai

mm stan
07-05-2011, 05:31 PM
Have you heard one in person? Do you have one? I'm trying to find someone who does! Thanks for the help and information guys. Again you all are quick on the trigger to answer my dying need questions! thanks.
Contact and PM 808boy...he has a tenor ....

NYG010
07-05-2011, 05:46 PM
He has, he does (probably more than one) and you have:)
Mike is www.ukerepublic.com

or link to makai ones http://cargo.ukerepublic.com/category/makai

Haha thanks for clearing that up! I'm getting hazed by all the seniors over here!! By the way that link doesnt have the Makai MT-90 :)

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 05:48 PM
Haha thanks for clearing that up! I'm getting hazed by all the seniors over here!! By the way that link doesnt have the Makai MT-90 :)

what is the MT-90? isn't that just the makai tenor mango?

NYG010
07-05-2011, 05:50 PM
what is the MT-90? isn't that just the makai tenor mango?

Yup. It was'nt on that site that you linked for me, but either way does anyone else have one that would like to chime in on the sound quality? I think I made the beginner mistake about going with the Fender..I will admit its still gorgeous!

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 05:50 PM
what is the MT-90? isn't that just the makai tenor mango?

i checked out the mt-90 and the one mike has listed. Looks like the same uke to me, he may have listed it wrong: http://cargo.ukerepublic.com/product/makai-mango-series-m-k90-tenor

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 05:51 PM
Yup. It was'nt on that site that you linked for me, but either way does anyone else have one that would like to chime in on the sound quality? I think I made the beginner mistake about going with the Fender..I will admit its still gorgeous!

i have played them. Not bad at all. If i wasn't addicted to Mele and KoAloha, I'd have one.

NYG010
07-05-2011, 05:54 PM
i have played them. Not bad at all. If i wasn't addicted to Mele and KoAloha, I'd have one.

You have been a huge help thanks bud. I know you cant generalize but as far as Mango wood goes how do you rank them in terms of quality and tone? Mellow or bright? High quality than maple and mahogany?

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 06:07 PM
You have been a huge help thanks bud. I know you cant generalize but as far as Mango wood goes how do you rank them in terms of quality and tone? Mellow or bright? High quality than maple and mahogany?

i once owned a spalted mango pono and it had a sweet sound but it didn't sound as good as the mango on these makais and mainlands. I think the sound is brighter than mahog but not as bright as koa. As far as better quality than maple or mahog? I have never heard a maple top only maple back and sides with spruce top. Your sound is generated from the top. I love mahogany. I like that mellow sound that mahog produces so I would buy a nice mahog over mango if i could only choose one.

I do like mango though as well. I think you will be very happy with the sound of the mango. it is bright and yet mellow at same time to me.

mustacheukuleles
07-05-2011, 06:11 PM
http://mob874.photobucket.com/albums/ab309/Animator06/Memes/trollface.png?t=1268244587

haolejohn
07-05-2011, 06:12 PM
http://mob874.photobucket.com/albums/ab309/Animator06/Memes/trollface.png?t=1268244587

? ? ? ?

NYG010
07-05-2011, 06:16 PM
? ? ? ?
Not sure if that has to do with a Fender Pa'ina that he was trying to sell to me, and now he got his revenge by me buying a new Fender Nohea? But either way it isn't relevant to the thread!

Gillian
07-05-2011, 06:31 PM
Haha this reply was actually from a Guitar Center sales person...Anyone have any other opinions?? The Fender came with Nylguts..

Yeah, here's an opinion. Guitar Center salespeople know diddly squat about ukuleles.

mustacheukuleles
07-05-2011, 06:34 PM
no it was just a smile!

olgoat52
07-05-2011, 06:55 PM
One of my ukes is a Mainland mango concert. From that experience, I call mango the "quiet Koa". The balance reminds me of koa but the volume and presence is not the same. I have heard that there is a big difference in Mangos though. Many folks have commented that Mainlands are some of the best sounding. (No offense to Uke Republic. Lots of folks speak highly of Mike and his ukes). Seems like Mike + Uke seems to be a safe bet in this world of ours.

bbycrts
07-05-2011, 07:09 PM
people tell me solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is.

Just who are these people? Some of the greatest-sounding ukes are satin-finished solid woods - and it is generally accepted that any reasonably built solid wood will sound better than its laminate counterpart. I think you're getting some bum info...

webby
07-05-2011, 09:23 PM
my wifes laminate tanglewood concert sounds as good as any solid wood uke i've ever heard, so i guess its all a matter of preference

Pippin
07-05-2011, 09:35 PM
my wifes laminate tanglewood concert sounds as good as any solid wood uke i've ever heard, so i guess its all a matter of preference

Many times, 2-ply laminates sound great. 3-ply laminates rarely sound good by comparison.

webby
07-05-2011, 10:00 PM
Many times, 2-ply laminates sound great. 3-ply laminates rarely sound good by comparison.

That's good to know, thanks.

Do you think it's because the 3 ply just restricts the surface from vibrating/resonating/responding because its just too thick, the laminate on the tanglewood is paper thin, and that seems to make the tone really loud and bright, i'm sure a 5 thousand dollar K brand custom would sound better, but not being a millionaire i had to find the best available sound for what I could afford, and I tried out a few solid ukes that were double or tripple what the tanglewood cost, but after weeks of playing and comparing it just stood out and demanded to be bought lol.

Ataraxia
07-05-2011, 10:35 PM
Many Guitar Center employees know very little, even about guitars! It's kind of like buying a computer at Wal-Mart... if you have any questions, shop elsewhere. If you want something cheap, go to a big box retailer. Me? I'd spend the extra money and buy an instrument from a store that specializes in customer service, knows how to do a proper setup, and is willing to answer any questions you might have.

I once tried to do an exchange at a GC that was different from the one I purchased at (mind you, their policy allows for this). When I walked in the store and explained my issue politely, the salesman complained to me about not wanting to have to do the work and then ran off and waited for the manager to handle the issue for me. I worked retail for years while I was studying in school, so I know that it's no way to do business lol.

Anyway, everyone else's advice has been spot-on. A solid-wood ukulele will sound MUCH better IMO, resonate more freely, and gloss (if done poorly.. ie; thick dripping coats) could only dull the instrument's tone. Good luck!

NYG010
07-06-2011, 05:12 AM
Thanks for all your help guys. I was already aware and warned of Guitar Center's sales staff, however the ukulele is actually setup pretty well from factory settings- I was just complaining about the idiotic comment I received from a sales person! Either way, I am probably going to hop on the Makai Mango, so if anyone has any input on that it would be greatly appreciated!

NYG010
07-06-2011, 05:41 AM
Anyone know the rep of Cordoba in the Uke world? Good quality and sound from their solids?

PoiDog
07-06-2011, 05:49 AM
So I recieved my Fender Nohea about 10 days ago and at first I was a little boy on christmas tearing up that UPS box to open my beautiful uke. It sounded amazing to me..I'm sitting here now playing it and I must say I am not FULLY satisfied. I feel as if the tone is dull and or getting duller (if that makes sense!). I'm thinking of switching up to my original choice of the Solid Mango Makai, however people tell me solid wood would sound even duller because it is not as highly glossed and finished like the Fender laminate koa is. Any suggestions anyone?, am I going crazy?

There is so much fail in whoever you were talking to, it's scary.

Evidently, solid wood instruments may sound "dull" or "mellow" at first, but they will open up as you play and as they begin to settle. The guy trying to sell you on the advantage of laminate seems to be simply ignorant. There's a reason Guitar Center is looked upon with scorn and disdain.

NYG010
07-06-2011, 05:52 AM
There is so much fail in whoever you were talking to, it's scary.

Evidently, solid wood instruments may sound "dull" or "mellow" at first, but they will open up as you play and as they begin to settle. The guy trying to sell you on the advantage of laminate seems to be simply ignorant. There's a reason Guitar Center is looked upon with scorn and disdain.

Thanks for your input, Ill keep that in mind! As of right now, I am trying to move away from the idiotic comments made by the sales staff and want to move on to find a better fitting uke. Anyone know reputations of Leolani, Makai (specifically the Mango solid tenor), and cordobas? I know this is general but opinions are fully reviewed!

Skitzic
07-06-2011, 06:20 AM
Yup. It was'nt on that site that you linked for me, but either way does anyone else have one that would like to chime in on the sound quality? I think I made the beginner mistake about going with the Fender..I will admit its still gorgeous!

You really can't listen to other people about sound. Sound is very subjective...and each uke is different. Maybe the mango they have is bright, but the one you get mellow. Sometimes you just have to pull the trigger and live with the results. If you hate the Fender, drop it and get the Makai. You're just going to run yourself around in circles with the 'what does this sound like' questions. Call Mim at Mim's ukes. She will work with you and help you figure out what you want.

NotsoGoodyet
07-06-2011, 06:37 AM
If at all possible, try before you buy.
Can anyone chime in with reputable ukulele stores in your area?
It would be worth a long drive to get what you want.
Seems like a good excuse to fly to Hawaii and visit any number of stores to try the whole spectrum.

Mim
07-06-2011, 06:49 AM
Haha this reply was actually from a Guitar Center sales person...Anyone have any other opinions?? The Fender came with Nylguts..

Guitar Center is around the corner from me. My husband tells customers that come in and mention getting a uke at Guitar Center... "Don't say you went there to my wife! She will go off!" Not about customer, just about guitar center... haha! I always joke that I am always fixing guitar center ukuleles... but truth is... I do every now and then. No set up, often fret buzzes, sometimes just a teenie weenie fix. Sometimes it should not have been sold in the first place. And the workers know nothing... they really dont. At least about ukuleles. Heck, I even tried to buy bell mallets from there and left dissapointed.

I do have to say though... I love my Sam Ash guys... but of course it is gonna be nothing like what you get from the "little guys". If people call and need a certain uke that I dont have... I send them to one of my dealer peeps that I am confident in so I can make sure they get the same amount of service and set up. So look into the "smaller" folks that do uke-only operations! We will take care of you!

Unless GC lets you swap out. But then you might want to get someone to do a little tweaking... it can make all the difference. And when you try it out, give each fret a good pluck and strum to make sure you have no fretting issues that lead to buzzing. Those can be expensive and cumbersome to get fixed. Solid is good, matte finish is just as good as gloss in my opinion, and makai makes a lightweight resonant mango. You cant go wrong there either! I would recommend looking into Ohana as well.

Lardy Fatboy
07-06-2011, 07:02 AM
I know what you mean, I have a Fender hau oli Tenor and it doesn't have the sustain of some of the others. I had seen reviews suggesting this was the case before I got it and that you could get better Ukuleles for the money but i wanted a Fender so this wasn't a big issue, (but I got the cheapest onebecause of this) and I'm happy with it now but I agree with the reviews I read, even with the cheapest one you can get better Ukuleles for the money.

Anyhow mine came with Aquila's fitted so I would have thought yours did too.

mustacheukuleles
07-06-2011, 07:09 AM
leolani's seem to be really nice. +1 for ohana being another really good choice. are u dead set on a tenor or are you willing to explore other sizes as well? I don't remember if you said your fender was your first ukulele or not but i started with a concert because i felt it was the best of both worlds. it has properties of both soprano and tenor imo. Granted thats the way i feel now owning a tenor and a soprano in addition to my concert but i could be wrong.

OldePhart
07-06-2011, 07:15 AM
Haha this reply was actually from a Guitar Center sales person...Anyone have any other opinions?? The Fender came with Nylguts..

Ahh, the fact that they work at Guitar Center is enough reason to avoid listening to them! You will rarely find an associate at a GC who is really an expert on guitars, let alone ukuleles.

NYG010
07-06-2011, 07:27 AM
Anyone have any input on this Lanikai?? http://www.theukulelesite.com/shopbyprice/200-399/lanikai-sm-t-all-solid-spalted-maple-tenor-ukulele-sale

Looking to pull the trigger soon!

Skitzic
07-06-2011, 08:30 AM
Anyone have any input on this Lanikai?? http://www.theukulelesite.com/shopbyprice/200-399/lanikai-sm-t-all-solid-spalted-maple-tenor-ukulele-sale

Looking to pull the trigger soon!

Lanikai comes from the factory with fairly high (at least IMHO) action. If you're going to go that route I would make sure you buy from someone you know inspects them...like Mim. :)

NYG010
07-06-2011, 08:41 AM
Lanikai comes from the factory with fairly high (at least IMHO) action. If you're going to go that route I would make sure you buy from someone you know inspects them...like Mim. :)

Yup, that link I just sent out by Hawaiin Music Supply is known for great setups..

Pippin
07-06-2011, 08:54 AM
Anyone know the rep of Cordoba in the Uke world? Good quality and sound from their solids?

Cordoba ukes are not stellar performers.

NYG010
07-06-2011, 08:32 PM
Thanks for all the input guys! I made the leap and bought the SM-T by Lanikai (Solid Spalted Mango) to replace my Fender Nohea. Any expierences or opinions ? Heres a link: http://www.theukulelesite.com/shopbyprice/200-399/lanikai-sm-t-all-solid-spalted-maple-tenor-ukulele-sale

Pippin
07-06-2011, 09:39 PM
I have always like Lanikai Ukes. I hope you will enjoy that one.

NYG010
07-07-2011, 07:19 AM
I have always like Lanikai Ukes. I hope you will enjoy that one.
Thanks Pippin! Anyone else have it or have played it?

haolejohn
07-07-2011, 07:23 AM
Thanks Pippin! Anyone else have it or have played it?

I have played two of the spalted mango ones. Nice sound but very quiet. I also wasn't a fan of the set-up on either one. They did have a nice sound, just quiet. Like my Pono was.

sukie
07-07-2011, 07:35 AM
To my knowledge laminates are not as good as solid wood ukuleles. Get some Worth clear strings too and you'll be in business.

NYG010
07-07-2011, 08:28 AM
I have played two of the spalted mango ones. Nice sound but very quiet. I also wasn't a fan of the set-up on either one. They did have a nice sound, just quiet. Like my Pono was.
Hm, what was wrong with the setup? Anything I should be looking out for? I hear this a lot on Lanikai's (but people say its really not THAT bad on the higher end models like the SM-T)

haolejohn
07-07-2011, 08:34 AM
Hm, what was wrong with the setup? Anything I should be looking out for? I hear this a lot on Lanikai's (but people say its really not THAT bad on the higher end models like the SM-T)

usually the strings are high and the frets are rough. Intonation can be off. Most companies don't do a set up on factory ukes, the dealers do. For us that pretty much have to buy site unseen (luckily I live a few miles from ukerepublic). This is why buying from a reputable dealer (ukerepublic, mim, and a few others) is so important.

deadpool
07-07-2011, 09:58 AM
Not to worry NYGO1O. I purchased my Kala from HMS and they did a great job on the set up. All the frets were level, nut and saddle adjusted to a comfortable height and intonation was good - I think they do a good job on set ups. Yours should arrive ready to go!

NYG010
07-07-2011, 12:05 PM
Awesome, thanks for the information guys! Still looking for someone who actually has the Lanikai SM-T! :)