View Full Version : Just ordered a Mahalo U-350

Matt McGriff
05-05-2012, 02:12 PM
Was looking for a cheap soprano uke after a few weeks with my Makala tenor. The Makala is okay, after a switch to aquila strings and lowering the saddle. Want to get a soprano and just ordered one of these from Amazon-


Mahalo U-350.
Soprano, Solid mahogany top, laminated acacia back and sides. Bone nut, Tusq saddle, rosewood bridge and fretboard, gold friction tuners, Aquila strings. And comes with what seems like a nice little bag. Irresitible for $80.

Has anyone else taken the plunge on one of these?

05-06-2012, 03:17 AM
Yeah, and I hated it.

The uke is intact and sometimes doesn't sound so bad.. but intonation is usually pretty bad on Mahalos.
But umm.. just receive the uke first and see if you like it for yourself, since your experience may differ.

Makala ukuleles are almost always superior in quality to Mahalos, and are priced similarly. So if you felt that the Makala needed setting up, you're in for a nasty surprise.

05-06-2012, 04:16 AM
Welcome to the family Matt, I am sure the Mahalo soprano will have a different sound than your Makala tenor. It is a fun journey that you have started upon. You will find all ukuleles have different qualities, even when you are getting into more expensive creations. The solid mahogany top will be nice for you to experience.

05-06-2012, 04:18 AM
Mahalo is a hit and miss kind of brand, some of their ukuleles come out as bars of gold whereas others just come out of...not a very great place. I was one of the lucky ones and had a very sweet sounding mahalo, I hope yours as good as mine or better than it was.

Matt McGriff
05-06-2012, 06:31 AM
I hope to pick up a koaloha soprano later in the summer, so if it's a disappointment it will quicken my desire for the k. The makala is nice, but the finish on it is pretty disappointing. A drip in the stain that looks like a broken blister on the body of the uke. Not complaining as it cost me $50 and with the aquilas and the setup, its pretty good. I'm hoping the mahalo is okay, but for $79, maybe it is too good to be true.

05-06-2012, 06:46 AM
Hi Matt. I have one and love it. I guess like Bao said it's hit or miss. The action on mine right out of the box was more suited for slide Uke than chording, but once I got it set up reasonably and put Aquilas on it, it sounds and plays great. $80 for a solid top ain't bad either.

Hope your happy with yours. Keep us posted

05-06-2012, 06:59 AM
Matt wrote a while ago...""I hope to pick up a koaloha soprano later in the summer,""
You have very good taste Matt. The waiting for the newest to arrive is the fun fun fun.

Matt McGriff
05-06-2012, 07:29 AM
I'm a guitar player and play some nice guitars that are nicely made. For now I'm just tinkering with the uke, but do see it as a nice adjunct to my guitar playing. The low end ukeleles probably won't hold my attention for long and I'm sure the little koaloha will be on its way in July. I see the Hawaiian k brands as little works of art. They are beautiful.

05-06-2012, 12:48 PM
My first Ukulele was a $26 Brown Mahalo. It had a lot of intonation and buzzing issues. I've since replaced it with an Ohana SK15. The Mahalo now put away in storage.

05-06-2012, 01:12 PM
Because a uke has a solid wood top is NO guarantee of anything other than it has a solid top. All the cheap ukes made before the 60's practically all had solid wood tops, back and sides, mostly birch, poplar, and mystery wood. Most of these ukes sounded fair to awful and the intonation was equally as bad. Mahalos and other cheap imports are no exception and are just above "this is a toy" status. You get what you pay for.