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campfly
05-28-2013, 06:34 PM
I'm thinking of getting a laminate soprano as a travel uke and am leaning towards the Martin 0XK. It got me wondering which laminate sopranos might give it a run for its money. Any impressions?

itsme
05-28-2013, 07:03 PM
Well, I guess I'll jump in ahead of the others who will probably suggest a Flea. They are known for their durability, but play nice, too. :)

PTOEguy
05-28-2013, 07:16 PM
Well, I guess I'll jump in ahead of the others who will probably suggest a Flea. They are known for their durability, but play nice, too. :)

Hard to beat a flea - still the easiest to play uke I've experienced. Sound is great also, nice crisp note definition and great projection.

hmgberg
05-28-2013, 08:30 PM
Kiwaya laminates are very good.

coolkayaker1
05-28-2013, 08:50 PM
Kiwaya laminates are very good.

+1 what Howard said.

trevorg888
05-28-2013, 11:13 PM
I'm thinking of getting a laminate soprano as a travel uke and am leaning towards the Martin 0XK. It got me wondering which laminate sopranos might give it a run for its money. Any impressions?

Hi not sure if you have bought a uke yet but i bought a travel uke last year so i did not have to chance damage to my good ukes. I settled on a ohana vita uke and i am very impressed with it it sounds and plays amazing for its cost and was not very expensive so no worry about damageing it
Hope this helps

Orson
05-28-2013, 11:16 PM
I have a plywood uke you that sounds great it's the Gretsch
For $100 you have A clear and punchy sound and it loooks also beautiful vintage! Maybe the HMS set up made it so good!

angusdegraosta
05-29-2013, 12:27 AM
I think it's well worth having a good laminate. I already have a solid instrument. One that deals well with weather extremes makes sense to have.

I was down to the Martin OXK, Flea, and KS-1. All three look like equally good choices. I got the Kiwaya. One advantage to it is the wider neck, if you like that. The finish on the neck feels smooth and seems like it's made to last, and the thing is very light. The other two are sure to be durable. I bet the Martin sounds awesome up close - I'm fascinated by that material it's made of.

Have fun researching!

Mattyukaholic
05-29-2013, 12:28 AM
+1 what Howard said.

+2 for Kiwaya. Better than a lot of solids in my book.

ukeeku
05-29-2013, 02:22 AM
+2 for Kiwaya. Better than a lot of solids in my book.
The KS-1 rocked
http://ukeeku.com/2011/01/11/kiwaya-ks-1-full-review/
The flea is not a bad idea either. I guess it depends on use. does it need to be rugged? Does it need to be stable? Kiwaya.

bamboofrog
05-29-2013, 02:31 AM
Another +1 for Kiwaya, I love my KS1, great little uke. The flea is really sweet and durable but I never really clicked with it.

Pukulele Pete
05-29-2013, 03:03 AM
I would go for the OXK or the Kiwaya ks-1 . I have an OXK and it is great , havent tryed the Kiwaya but I have a KTS-4 and its an awesome uke.
The OXK seems pretty heavy duty where the Kiwaya ( I'm guessing ) would be more delicate. I wanted a Flea really bad but now that I have the OXK , I dont want one anymore.
The OXK is a great uke, a go anywhere uke. One of the things I like best about Kiwaya and Martin is the neck , great playability . ( playability - is that a word? )

kvehe
05-29-2013, 03:18 AM
My top three (to echo everyone else) would be (in no particular order) the KS-1, the Gretsch, and the 0XK. I have both the Gretsch and the 0XK and love both (my Kiwaya is a KTC-3). The first cut could probably be made on price: KS-1 about $252; Gretsch $99; 0XK $279. If you compare the KS-1 and the 0XK (not having touched a KS-1), I would say that a big difference would be the weight, as Pete says above. The 0XK is definitely heavy, and I assume (as does Pete) that the Kiwaya would be lighter, based on my KTC-3, and what I've read.

mm stan
05-29-2013, 04:12 AM
NO doubt the kiwaya by far.... coolcow has one for sale...she paid 1650 I think from Hms...she wants I think 1250.....almost new and hardly played....25% off is a great deal

Pukulele Pete
05-29-2013, 04:36 AM
Stan , we are talking "Laminate Sopranos" , Woo hoo hoo :cool:

TheOnlyUkeThatMatters
05-29-2013, 04:54 AM
I love my Kiwaya KS-0P, thin body laminate soprano. Great sound; lighter than a feather; perfect travel uke. I've played a couple Martin OXKs at a local shop. They sound great as well.

kissing
05-29-2013, 05:03 AM
Many of the great options I had in mind have already been mentioned... hard to beat a Flea, Martin or Kiwaya.


And Kala/Makala also have some great choices at low price points, especially if you get one setup from HMS
http://www.theukulelesite.com/


My favourite laminate soprano is a Mainland "Gecko" uke with rounded back... it absolutely sings with Worth Clear strings and is bulletproof.
I can't seem to find it on their website anymore though..

bnolsen
05-29-2013, 07:46 AM
Many of the great options I had in mind have already been mentioned... hard to beat a Flea, Martin or Kiwaya.

My favourite laminate soprano is a Mainland "Gecko" uke with rounded back... it absolutely sings with Worth Clear strings and is bulletproof.
I can't seem to find it on their website anymore though..

uke republic had the gecko still last time i checked.

http://cargo.ukerepublic.com/product/mainland-ukes-reggae-gecko

campfly
05-29-2013, 09:23 AM
Thanks for all of the great responses! I had already been considering the Gretsch as a possibility just due to the price advantage and its sweet look. I had read about the Kiwayas before, but was concerned that the thinness of the laminate (their hallmark) might mean that they were more vulnerable to the vagaries of travel and climate fluctuations than the HPL of the 0XK. If any Kiwaya owners would like to comment on their durability, it would be appreciated.

As for the Gretsch, does it even approach the Martin or Kiwaya in sound or feel?

bnolsen
05-29-2013, 12:34 PM
As for the Gretsch, does it even approach the Martin or Kiwaya in sound or feel?

I think it was last year sometime there was a lot of traffic about them.

here's one hit:

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?69479-Gretsch-Soprano-re-issue-brand-new-in-the-bag!!&highlight=gretsch+soprano

ChrisRCovington
05-29-2013, 12:44 PM
I have a Luna pineapple tattoo and honestly it isn't bad for the price tag. It is the same ukulele as aNueNue's U900 pineapple (well different laser etched images but the body and all that is clearly made in the same factory) and about 1/2 the cost. Can't beat that.

Pukulele Pete
05-29-2013, 12:50 PM
The Martin and the Kiwaya will be a little wider at the nut which I like alot.

lakesideglenn
05-29-2013, 02:22 PM
I have a Lanakai LU21 hanging on the wall that I've got $40 into. Would pass it on for the same plus shipping. PM me if interested.
Cheers!