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CountryMouse
01-27-2012, 09:02 AM
This is the solid mahogany soprano ukulele. I have been looking at it on the Hawaii Music Supply site.

http://www.theukulelesite.com/islander-mss-4-solid-mahogany-soprano-ukulele.html

The difference in sound between this and the laminate version is amazing. The laminate version has what I call a "tin-can" sound.

What is that about the 1-1/2" nut width? They say that's good if you have larger hands, but I certainly don't need that as I have small hands!

Would this be a good ukulele for me? I want something small but nice sounding. I don't really want to go concert.

Mousie

ATTN Mods: I think I should've put this on the Buying Tips board. Please move if you think that would be better. Thanks! :)

gokidd
01-27-2012, 09:27 AM
Hi, good lady Mouse.
I wear a man's medium size glove, for perspective, and come from a guitar-playing background.
I currently have a Kala tenor with a narrower neck and an Islander tenor with the wider neck.
Not sure which is going to win out, overall, with me -- but I did notice that stiff, stiff strings on the wider neck was NOT a good combination for me.
I've gone back to softer strings on that wider neck and it's fine.

Having said all that -- you do seem to prefer smaller instruments and don't you mostly strum (rather than finger-pick individual notes)?
If so, I don't think you'd gain much from a wider neck. Folks who finger-pick melodies seem to benefit most from wider string spacing.

I send you warmest greetings. I used to live about an hour south of Cincinnati and always enjoyed visiting there.
Bob

itsscottwilder
01-27-2012, 09:32 AM
The Islanders really seem to be a UU favorite. I've never played one so I have no basis for comparison.

When I bought my Luna concert though. I wasn't totally in love with the sound when I played it in the store. But I loved the vibe and it felt really comfortable to hold and to fret chords.

So I bought it, changed to a different brand of strings and I couldn't be happier with this inexpensive laminate Uke.

UkueBass23
01-27-2012, 09:51 AM
I have a solid soprano Islander that I purchased from someone here on the forum. I absolutely love it but also compared it heavily to my two Lanikai that have the more narrow necks. The sound is superb, the construction is spot on and the playability (esp with a set up from HMS, which mine has) makes it a great choice. I admit I am among those promoting the Islanders on the forum, but that's only because I enjoy it so much and think it is a great uke for the money. You will not be disappointed.

Lori
01-27-2012, 09:54 AM
This is the solid mahogany soprano ukulele. I have been looking at it on the Hawaii Music Supply site.

http://www.theukulelesite.com/islander-mss-4-solid-mahogany-soprano-ukulele.html

The difference in sound between this and the laminate version is amazing. The laminate version has what I call a "tin-can" sound.

What is that about the 1-1/2" nut width? They say that's good if you have larger hands, but I certainly don't need that as I have small hands!

Would this be a good ukulele for me? I want something small but nice sounding. I don't really want to go concert.

Mousie

ATTN Mods: I think I should've put this on the Buying Tips board. Please move if you think that would be better. Thanks! :)

I have pretty large hands for a woman, and I sometimes find that the space between strings is a bit tight especially on sopranos. The difference between the standard width of 1-3/8" and 1-1/2" is not a lot when divided by the 4 strings. However, that slight difference can be helpful when things feel tight, especially with hammer-on and pull-off notes. I really don't even think about the difference when changing sizes, and had no trouble at all when I got a 1-1/2 width neck. Maybe you can find someone who lives nearby with an Islander or Kanile'a that you can test drive.

–Lori

Shakespeare
01-27-2012, 10:43 AM
I have the solid mahogany tenor Islander. I love it. Many other people love it. If I wanted a solid wood soprano I think there are alot of other options to explore in that price range.

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 09:52 AM
Hi, good lady Mouse.
I wear a man's medium size glove, for perspective, and come from a guitar-playing background.
I currently have a Kala tenor with a narrower neck and an Islander tenor with the wider neck.
Not sure which is going to win out, overall, with me -- but I did notice that stiff, stiff strings on the wider neck was NOT a good combination for me.
I've gone back to softer strings on that wider neck and it's fine.

Having said all that -- you do seem to prefer smaller instruments and don't you mostly strum (rather than finger-pick individual notes)?
If so, I don't think you'd gain much from a wider neck. Folks who finger-pick melodies seem to benefit most from wider string spacing.

I send you warmest greetings. I used to live about an hour south of Cincinnati and always enjoyed visiting there.
Bob

Hey, Bob! Sorry I'm late in replying.

Oh! I understand now! The Flukes and Fleas have wider necks, and I do okay on those. :) I'm dithering about whether to splurge on a new ukulele--I have waaaaay too many as it is!

Yay Cincinnati! I love it here too. :)

Mousie

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 09:56 AM
The Islanders really seem to be a UU favorite. I've never played one so I have no basis for comparison.

When I bought my Luna concert though. I wasn't totally in love with the sound when I played it in the store. But I loved the vibe and it felt really comfortable to hold and to fret chords.

So I bought it, changed to a different brand of strings and I couldn't be happier with this inexpensive laminate Uke.

You know, after doing a video with my aNueNue mahogany laminate pineapple and really *hearing* it, I am thinking I might not need any other ukuleles (fay mouse last words!). It has a really nice sound!

Mousie

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 09:58 AM
I have a solid soprano Islander that I purchased from someone here on the forum. I absolutely love it but also compared it heavily to my two Lanikai that have the more narrow necks. The sound is superb, the construction is spot on and the playability (esp with a set up from HMS, which mine has) makes it a great choice. I admit I am among those promoting the Islanders on the forum, but that's only because I enjoy it so much and think it is a great uke for the money. You will not be disappointed.

Oooo, trying to decide if I should hold off and save money. But if I do spring for a solid-wood ukulele, it'll be an Islander from HMS. :) Thanks for the good review!

Mousie

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 10:01 AM
I have pretty large hands for a woman, and I sometimes find that the space between strings is a bit tight especially on sopranos. The difference between the standard width of 1-3/8" and 1-1/2" is not a lot when divided by the 4 strings. However, that slight difference can be helpful when things feel tight, especially with hammer-on and pull-off notes. I really don't even think about the difference when changing sizes, and had no trouble at all when I got a 1-1/2 width neck. Maybe you can find someone who lives nearby with an Islander or Kanile'a that you can test drive.

–Lori

After the explanation of what that width was (I didn't understand about the nut--I wish they had just said fretboard width *at* the nut!), I measured my Flukes and Fleas and it's the same! I have no problem with them.

I do wish I could test drive one first!

Mousie

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 10:02 AM
I have the solid mahogany tenor Islander. I love it. Many other people love it. If I wanted a solid wood soprano I think there are alot of other options to explore in that price range.

And that's probably why I should take my time. Although sometimes I get overwhelmed when there are too *many* options!

Thanks!

Mousie

efiscella
02-06-2012, 10:31 AM
I have played the MS-4 and owned the MSS-4. The solid wood is the way to go. Although both good, and both worth their respective prices, however, In my opinion, the MSS-4 is worth much more than the price being charged. It is a beauty. I sold mine to begin to the move to a KoAloha but I am really sorry that I sold it. I sold it to a member here on UU and I keep reading in different posts from him how great an uke it is. And he is right. i told him that if he ever decided to sell, I would buy it back. he says, "Never." :o

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 12:33 PM
I have played the MS-4 and owned the MSS-4. The solid wood is the way to go. Although both good, and both worth their respective prices, however, In my opinion, the MSS-4 is worth much more than the price being charged. It is a beauty. I sold mine to begin to the move to a KoAloha but I am really sorry that I sold it. I sold it to a member here on UU and I keep reading in different posts from him how great an uke it is. And he is right. i told him that if he ever decided to sell, I would buy it back. he says, "Never." :o

Thanks for your advice! If I decide to get one, it'll be the solid wood. :-)

Mousie

gokidd
02-06-2012, 12:45 PM
Hey, Bob! Sorry I'm late in replying.

Oh! I understand now! The Flukes and Fleas have wider necks, and I do okay on those. :) I'm dithering about whether to splurge on a new ukulele--I have waaaaay too many as it is!

Yay Cincinnati! I love it here too. :)

Mousie

Have a bowl of Cincinnati Chili (Five-Way) and ponder your uke-ness.
Cheers!

Plainsong
02-06-2012, 12:59 PM
I always avoided the 1.5" nut width ukes, thinking my stubby fingers couldn't possibly make the stretch. The Kanilea superconcert made a liar out of me. Not only can I make the stretch, but it's so nice to play. Everyone's different, but like you, I worried about the extra space. It's most likely going to help you more than hurt you. :)

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 02:30 PM
Have a bowl of Cincinnati Chili (Five-Way) and ponder your uke-ness.
Cheers!

Heh! I'd rather have a 4-way (no onions). :-)

Mousie

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 02:33 PM
I always avoided the 1.5" nut width ukes, thinking my stubby fingers couldn't possibly make the stretch. The Kanilea superconcert made a liar out of me. Not only can I make the stretch, but it's so nice to play. Everyone's different, but like you, I worried about the extra space. It's most likely going to help you more than hurt you. :)

The only time I have trouble with the Fluke or Flea neck is when I'm trying to make my crazy thumb-over-the-top Bm chord. Or any barre chord, come to think of it.

Mousie

Plainsong
02-06-2012, 02:53 PM
The neck on the Flea is a lot thicker and boxier than the Kanilea. I don't know how friendly it is to thumb-over-top fingering, but the way it rests in my hands is that the curve fits into the curve of the hand, and all the finger has to do is press lightly.

edit - I'm talking about a Kanilea and not an Islander, but it's my understanding that they're using similar measurements right? I think?

mm stan
02-06-2012, 02:54 PM
Aloha Mousie,
Not Sure on the Islanders...but solid Mahogany is the way to go.....Sweet...

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 05:39 PM
The neck on the Flea is a lot thicker and boxier than the Kanilea. I don't know how friendly it is to thumb-over-top fingering, but the way it rests in my hands is that the curve fits into the curve of the hand, and all the finger has to do is press lightly.

edit - I'm talking about a Kanilea and not an Islander, but it's my understanding that they're using similar measurements right? I think?

I sure wish I could try one out! It sounds like it would be comfortable for me. :)

Mousie

CountryMouse
02-06-2012, 05:40 PM
Aloha Mousie,
Not Sure on the Islanders...but solid Mahogany is the way to go.....Sweet...

I don't want a bright sound, more a mellow one. Someone told me that I want mahogany for that. Is that true?

Mousie

mm stan
02-06-2012, 07:40 PM
Aloha Mousie,
For all my solid mahogany ukes even solid mahogany chinese uke..sweeeeet and warm...yup..
it's an old time favorite that stands up through the test of time..

CountryMouse
02-10-2012, 06:44 AM
Aloha Mousie,
For all my solid mahogany ukes even solid mahogany chinese uke..sweeeeet and warm...yup..
it's an old time favorite that stands up through the test of time..

I'm still thinking mahogany at some point, then...but I think it's gonna be a Mainland! :)

Mousie