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View Full Version : Sounds a bit weedy? Help my poor Martin!



KoaChameleon
06-24-2012, 01:43 AM
Just a quick comparison between my Martin soprano and Concert. Excuse the dodgy playing. After hearing my vid I think the concert sounds a bit weedy? It is currently strung with Martin M600's. Any suggestions on how to beef up that tone? The soprano has Worth's on it. Ta.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkFPg1dZkhg&feature=plcp

Doc_J
06-24-2012, 02:12 AM
Both instruments sound lovely, but I have been told Martin sopranos sound better than their concerts, by the designs.
To mellow/ broaden the concert tone, I'd try new strings , either Ko'olau Alohi or D'Addario Nyltech.

KoaChameleon
06-24-2012, 02:53 AM
Thanks for the suggestions Doc, I haven't tried either of those strings before. Hopefully I can easily get them in the UK. The concert had Aquila's on it when I got it (probably old and worn) and I felt it was lacking in sparkle. Now I think I've got too much!

BlackBearUkes
06-24-2012, 11:10 AM
Just a quick comparison between my Martin soprano and Concert. Excuse the dodgy playing. After hearing my vid I think the concert sounds a bit weedy? It is currently strung with Martin M600's. Any suggestions on how to beef up that tone? The soprano has Worth's on it. Ta.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkFPg1dZkhg&feature=plcp

Both ukes sound fine, you just need to find the string that works for you. One thing I did notice in your finger picking playing style is that you rest two fingers on the sound board while you are picking. That is going to stop the top from vibrating as it should which will mute the sound and decrease the sustain. Try playing without touching the top if you can, you may like the sound more. Good luck.

RichM
06-24-2012, 01:13 PM
I agree that both ukes sound good, but that soprano sounds spectacular! That's the classic Martin sound, for my money. You got a good one for sure.

KoaChameleon
06-24-2012, 02:11 PM
Thanks for the comments.
BlackBear you make a valid point about resting my fingers on the soundboard, I hadn't thought of that. That's going to be a tough habit to break! I will persevere.
Rich - I'm a Kala fan, what's your opinion of your Kala KA-KTG-CT Tenor? Does it sound as lush as it looks? Thanks for bigging up my soprano btw. :)
I've just ordered some concert D'Addario Nyltechs as suggested by Doc, thought they might be worth a try.

RichM
06-24-2012, 03:37 PM
Rich - I'm a Kala fan, what's your opinion of your Kala KA-KTG-CT Tenor? Does it sound as lush as it looks? Thanks for bigging up my soprano btw. :)

My Kala was the first tenor I purchased, after starting my uke career on concerts. Since then, I've acquired some higher-end ukes, but I hung onto the Kala because it's just a nice-sounding instrument. It's exactly what a mid-price instrument ought to be; well-made, attractive, and extremely nice tone. It has more of a front-and-center punch to it than the more even, balanced tone of, say, an all-koa uke. I really like it, and it stands out in a crowd. I take it to my local acoustic jam, where it competes with 10 or 11 guitars and cuts through quite nicely.

It's not an all-solid uke (the back & sides are laminate), but I don't consider that a negative, because it sounds great-- which is what it's all about, right?

ksiegel
06-25-2012, 05:20 AM
Both ukes sound fine, you just need to find the string that works for you. One thing I did notice in your finger picking playing style is that you rest two fingers on the sound board while you are picking. That is going to stop the top from vibrating as it should which will mute the sound and decrease the sustain. Try playing without touching the top if you can, you may like the sound more. Good luck.

I have to agree - both ukes sound great - I was surprised at how much brighter the concert sounds, though!

Play around with other strings - I don't have a martin, but I like Worth strings. I have Clears on two of my instruments, and I'm going to try the browns of my Kala KTG-CT then I next change strings, just for the hell of it.



-Kurt

KoaChameleon
06-25-2012, 07:43 AM
My Kala was the first tenor I purchased, after starting my uke career on concerts. Since then, I've acquired some higher-end ukes, but I hung onto the Kala because it's just a nice-sounding instrument. It's exactly what a mid-price instrument ought to be; well-made, attractive, and extremely nice tone. It has more of a front-and-center punch to it than the more even, balanced tone of, say, an all-koa uke. I really like it, and it stands out in a crowd. I take it to my local acoustic jam, where it competes with 10 or 11 guitars and cuts through quite nicely.
It's not an all-solid uke (the back & sides are laminate), but I don't consider that a negative, because it sounds great-- which is what it's all about, right?

Thanks for that Rich, great sound as well as looks, can't grumble about that! Tempting...



I have to agree - both ukes sound great - I was surprised at how much brighter the concert sounds, though!

Play around with other strings - I don't have a martin, but I like Worth strings. I have Clears on two of my instruments, and I'm going to try the browns of my Kala KTG-CT then I next change strings, just for the hell of it.



-Kurt

I did wonder about Worth Browns. Probably try the Nyltech's first though as they're a new string to me and I'd like to see how they differ (if at all) from Aquila's.

hmgberg
06-27-2012, 02:14 PM
I agree with the suggestions to try other strings on the concert. I've used all kinds of strings. The Alohi strings, Doc recommends, are very bright and should sound terrific on your concert. On the downside, they are a little bulky and stiff. If you like Worths, you might consider CDs (harder tension); these are not quite as hard or thick as Alohis, but will be brighter sounding than CMs. I find Worth Browns to be somewhat louder than Clears, but mellower in tone; i.e., not as plinky on the high end, but great on the bottom and midrange. I have them on most of my ukes. I've tried Aquilas on a few of my Martins and don't think they bring out the best in those instruments, although I do like Aquilas on other ukuleles. Fremont Blacklines and SouthCoast medium tension strings are also good on Martins, IMO. The SouthCoast strings produce a remarkably even tone, no boomy bass. Sometimes, however, I actually like a boomy bass.