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UkeKiddinMe
10-04-2013, 01:31 AM
I don't know if there has been a thread on this before, and it's hard to search for.

The thread is about - your view of the enjoyment of low end ukes.

All my life, regardless of what instrument I played at the time, I always sought low end - low priced - equipment. It may seem strange, but I get satisfaction out of getting good tone out of something that doesn't cost much.

I'm totally not into instruments that are works of art. I can appreciate them a great deal from a distance, but I have no desire to own them.
Instead, I have always gravitated towards low end, ordinary stuff - that I try to get the most out of.

You?

Jon Moody
10-04-2013, 02:12 AM
For many years, I was that same way. However, after sitting down one time and looking at all of the work I spent in updating, modding, or just general setups, I realized my time was worth something and opted to find an instrument that might cost more initially, but that I wouldn't have to do anything with down the road (with the exception of a minor setup here and there).

That's not to say that I don't still find some very inexpensive ukes that fit that bill, because I do. However for me, at this point in time, I'd rather spend more time playing a well made instrument instead of working on one to make it sound better.

harpdog cc
10-04-2013, 02:46 AM
I love my "The Triumph" ukulele from Empire Music. I think the price has gone up all the way to $58 US.59504
One of my favorite guitars is a $300 Cort. If they play nice, they are nice.

teruterubouzu
10-04-2013, 02:48 AM
It's not an either or for me. I love plugging in my k-wave and making up loud, ridiculous, bad songs. I can't imagine having as much fun doing that with a high end uke.

For daily playing I use one of my more traditional, medium range ukes. I think I would like it even more if I had a k-brand, or other high-end uke, but it's gonna be awhile.

seonachan
10-04-2013, 03:11 AM
My first uke was a Makala tenor, and I'm still amazed by how good it sounds. I had assumed I would be moving on from it once I got some "nicer" ukes, but the sound and pleasure it gives far outweighs the little bit of money I would have had in my pocket had I sold it. It's officially my daughter's now, but I still claim it as my low g tenor.

I may have been lucky, but it didn't even need any setup when I got it. All it needed to sound great was a set of Aquilas.

barefootgypsy
10-04-2013, 03:28 AM
I have a little blue Mahalo soprano that cost me 20, and you know, it plays just fine, there's nothing wrong with it and it gives me lots of pleasure. Yesterday I tuned it up to the old traditional D tuning out of curiosity, and liked it just as much..... I won't be giving it away.... it doesn't sound the same as my high end Kiwaya but I don't expect it to...... by the way, I've got Living Water fluorocarbons on it now - as I have all my wooden ukes.

sukie
10-04-2013, 03:40 AM
It is all so very personal. I have a high end ukulele. I LOVE to play it. My low end ukuleles sit on stands. I remember when Jake played my first ukulele. I made it screech. Jake made it sing. Should have heard him play my high end one. Wow!

It is not the ukulele, it is the player. Nothing wrong with a low end ukulele.

PhilUSAFRet
10-04-2013, 03:48 AM
I get a lot of enjoyment with the whole "silk purse from a sow's ear" sort of thing, but I have a good ear and do appreciate how a "great" uke sounds. I can remember clearly how good I thought my Pono sounded until I picked up a Kanilea. I figure as long as you're having fun and enjoying your instruments, what the hell, isn't that what it's all about anyway?

Cornfield
10-04-2013, 03:50 AM
It's not an either or for me. I love plugging in my k-wave and making up loud, ridiculous, bad songs. I can't imagine having as much fun doing that with a high end uke.

For daily playing I use one of my more traditional, medium range ukes. I think I would like it even more if I had a k-brand, or other high-end uke, but it's gonna be awhile.

That K-Wave was cool. I'm glad you are enjoying it but sometimes I wish that I had kept it. I was in a marching guitar band this summer and the K-Wave would have been cool to march with.

drbekken
10-04-2013, 04:04 AM
I have never owned a high end ukulele. I have a Rogue soprano and two Rogue baritones that I like a lot. The other cheapos I've had, I've given away as gifts. One day, I may get more upscale baritone, but there is something lowdown and funky about those Rogues that I really like. I have modified them some - lowered action, changed tuners on them all and the bridge on the soprano - but basically they are the same. This does not mean that I have some kind of principle here; in my career as a pianist I absolutely LOVE great grands and such...

Bao
10-04-2013, 06:08 AM
I own a makala baritone and I don't think i'd ever switch to a better one! this one has a sweet tone and not to mention, I refinished it myself :D

Captain America
10-04-2013, 07:25 AM
A Makala baritone sounds like a good idea.

My beater uke is a purple Mahalo soprano. The nice thing about it is that you CAN beat on it and mistreat it and leave it outside in the grass or in the car. . . very useful that way, a feature not found in higher-end musical instruments! :)

cigarfan
10-04-2013, 07:27 AM
I didn't started playing uke until earlier this year. Since I have the means, when a friend suggested how much fun the uke was to play I decided to get a nice one. My Dad always said buy the best you can afford at the time ... it will last longer. He wasn't talking ukes but that always stuck with me. Now that I have some quality ukes I am far less impressed when I play a cheaper model at the music store. As long as I can afford them I'm going to stick with the high end. As was mentioned earlier, I like to spend my time playing them as opposed to fussing with the setup stuff.

kohanmike
10-04-2013, 07:51 AM
I've kinda gone through this on my other posts, but to reiterate; I always look for good deals, my first uke about 5 months ago was a Mahalo UTL-30 T Style, designed to look like a classic Fender Telecaster. I saw it in a Musicians Friend catalogue for $99 shortly after I bought a Fender Telecaster ($399 down from $499), which was really the only reason I bought the Mahalo, thought it would be "cute" matching the Tele. I searched the internet and found the Mahalo for $65.

59514

As I started playing the Mahalo, I found that it was rather difficult to make the cords, and in researching, found out about sizes. The Mahalo is a soprano, and I realized I needed a tenor, coming from playing guitar for so many years. So I opened up my latest Musician's Friend and found a Lanikai LQA-TCA on special, $149 down from $329. I drove over to Sam Ash in Hollywood and saw it there for $329, asked if they match prices, they said yes, so I bought it for $149. But, it had a Fishman Sonitone preamp in the sound hole in a bad position. I tried to return it to Sam Ash, but I was past the return period, so I yanked the Sonitone and installed a Fishman Isys+ in the side. (I sold the Mahalo shortly after for $35).

59517

While the Lanikai was out of commission, I realized I would need a second uke in those circumstances, so I got online and found an Eddy Finn EF-13-TE for $158 down from $249. I didn't like the preamp either, so I changed that out.

59518

To cap the whole story, when I tried to return the Lanikai to Sam Ash, they looked up another choice and found a Gretsch G9121 ACE for $239, but it would arrive after the exchange period, so I passed. When I got home, I researched the Gretsch and found lots of very positive reviews. I then found it at N'stuff in Pennsylvania for $199, free shipping, so I ordered it before I actually bought the Eddy Finn. The Gretsch was on backorder with a two month delay, but the price was so good, I went with it. I arrived yesterday and is it nice.

59520

They're all solid top, the Lanikai is easy to play with a wide nut and I had the action lowered, the Eddy Finn is brighter with a polished finish, and the Gretsch I'm still evaluating, but it sure feels good. I'm going to have the action lowered on both. I also added strap buttons to the bottom of all of them (no qualms about that what-so-ever, especially since I also cut the sides out for the replacement preamps).

So yes, I look for bargains, but I also try to stay in a level that makes the deal worthwhile. All three ukes get good reviews, and I think they all sound good.

PhilUSAFRet
10-04-2013, 08:27 AM
I own a makala baritone and I don't think i'd ever switch to a better one! this one has a sweet tone and not to mention, I refinished it myself :D

Let's see it Bao

bnolsen
10-04-2013, 08:30 AM
It is not the ukulele, it is the player. Nothing wrong with a low end ukulele.

bad intonation is bad intonation. Not even jake can fix that. And I'm sure trying to compensate the intonation by doing slight string tension adjustments on the fly is just utterly irritating to someone like him.

Hippie Dribble
10-04-2013, 11:19 AM
It's not an either or for me.

Same here. I have several expensive ukes and a bunch of cheapos that cost between 15 and 50 dollars. On balance, the cheapos get played more. All ukes are happiness machines, whatever their cost. Dodgy intonation doesn't even bother me, my ear isn't that refined. My first uke was a painted blue mahalo that cost 20 bucks and still gets played most days, even with the bridge and the back separating. :)

ukemunga
10-04-2013, 12:50 PM
I've not spent more than about $275 so far and I really value a "find"... great performance for the price.

One of my favorites, if not *the* favorite I've had is my little Kala-SLNG concert neck laminate soprano. $88. With an HMS setup!

OldePhart
10-04-2013, 01:23 PM
If it intonates well, has a decent action, and isn't terribly screechy (which more often than not is a result of string choice) I'll play it. If it doesn't at least intonate well I just can't stand it. Out-of-tune chords are like fingers on a blackboard for me. Price doesn't really figure into the equation.

John

UkeKiddinMe
10-04-2013, 01:29 PM
The best low end value I have seen in my short uke life so far is - the natural finish uke at RondoMusic. Enclosed tuners. Very beautiful wood.
It was an awesome Soprano. I set it up as best I can, and I gave it to my daughter, who loves it.

Bill1
10-04-2013, 02:17 PM
I would usually agree that its not about the money for me, I just get what I can afford or what is available to take away out of a shop and then forget about the price and concentrate on the music. So I have a few cheap and a few expensive ukes, looking back I tend to play the ones that sound the way I like, which are generally the ones that cost more.
However, I just pulled out my $25 (from memory) Hanknn, delivered from China with original strings and has been sitting around not being played since it arrived, and tuned it up to D as discussed in this thread. It sounds a lot sweeter in D, and the intonation seems to be a little bit better than when it is in C. I also tuned my old blue 2005 (not the recent "updated" model) U30 Mahalo up to D and got a similar result. This is not a surprise since it is likely that the Chinese makers borrowed the design of old Martins or similar that were made to be played in D tuning.
So now I am going to start to suggest that anyone who buys a low cost soprano size uke should start out tuning it in D with the original strings. Even consider going back to the future and picking up some old ukulele method books that were written in D tuning and bypass C tuning and a lot of recent watered down texts altogether. If you keep playing for a while and invest in some book learning you will learn enough to make changing between C and D relatively easy. Maybe if enough people do it D tuning sections will start to appear on bulletin boards?
Back to keeping your costs low, buy a low cost soprano and tune up to D and save yourself about $20 straight away by keeping the original strings, because I think they may be OK for a while when you tune in D, and see if you can play it well and be happy enough to avoid or reduce UAS and save yourself some money over time.

teruterubouzu
10-04-2013, 02:45 PM
That K-Wave was cool. I'm glad you are enjoying it but sometimes I wish that I had kept it. I was in a marching guitar band this summer and the K-Wave would have been cool to march with.

Well, know that it went to a good home. If it makes you feel any better, it is the uke that is nearest and dearest to my heart. I'm very thankful that you sold it to me. :)

teruterubouzu
10-04-2013, 02:47 PM
Same here. I have several expensive ukes and a bunch of cheapos that cost between 15 and 50 dollars. On balance, the cheapos get played more. All ukes are happiness machines, whatever their cost. Dodgy intonation doesn't even bother me, my ear isn't that refined. My first uke was a painted blue mahalo that cost 20 bucks and still gets played most days, even with the bridge and the back separating. :)

I love this philosophy.

It's also a good nudge to get over myself and not try for perfection because it ain't gonna happen for me no matter how nice a uke I have.

jcarlos
10-04-2013, 08:04 PM
Oh boy, can I relate to this lol. Budget instruments are what I learned on so naturally they have a place in my heart and I play them more than anything in my collection. I only have one "fancy" uke, but I rarely use it. My first 8 string is still the one I play the most an cost me only $100 , so far its been the best $100 I ever spent

hucklelele
10-04-2013, 08:41 PM
YES! Having something is better than having nothing- and it's so great to be able to try so many instruments now at a low cost. Several decades ago, there wasn't such a choice, and "entry level" still meant costly in some. When I started palying guitar, a tuner - chromatic especially was upwards of $50- I got one recently on ebay for $6 delevered and the best one yet!

The only danger is going "TOO LOW" because sometimes those instriuments are out there, so you should research it a little bit- and so much easier now in the computer age.

I went this route with a fiddle recently- got a package delivered for $37- the fiddle wasn't bad, but I knew right away I wanted a better one, and found a good Rothenberg on ebay for under $100.

I'm even more that way with electronics, where technology moves along so quickly, and a device goes belly up in a millisecond-

a decent instrument will last a lifetime generally - yet still has a life

Classical guitars have no truss rod, and the tension evbentually bows the neck- I still have the student guitar made in Korea I got cheaply over twenty years ago, and I've cut the bridge down a couple of times- a Takamine I got used mint condition for half price a decade ago was in fact more precise feeling and less laquered with greater intonation hoping it lasts a couple more years at least.

kohanmike
10-04-2013, 08:45 PM
An addendum to my post, I just ordered an Oscar Schmidt tenor cutaway spalted maple open box from eBay for $169. Just can't pass up a bargain that looks so good, and gets good reviews. I'm already planning to replace the preamp with one I have that has a tuner. My UAS is running rampant.

willisoften
10-04-2013, 08:52 PM
It may seem strange, but I get satisfaction out of getting good tone out of something that doesn't cost much.


I only quoted the important bit. It doesn't seem strange at all. I know exactly what you mean, BUT

Me, no. I'm not the same I started off as cabinet-maker I appreciate good woodwork and beautiful woods.
To be honest I don't play that well. My time is limited and I want to enjoy what time I have as much as possible.
That means that I look for Ukes that have a certain mellow ringing tone, in a well made, nicely finished, well presented package.
It often comes expensive, which is why I only have a couple.

Phluffy the Destroyer
10-04-2013, 10:38 PM
My first ukulele cost me $40 and I still play the hell out of it! All in all, I have 6 sopranos that cost me less than $40, and I have them each set up just a little differently. It makes things simple when I want to try a different sound on a song. So, that's one thing cheap ukes are good for...

My main thing though, is that I practice a LOT in public. I play while I'm waiting for the bus, I play at parks, and a lot of the time I play while I'm walking down the street. Let's face it.... sometimes **** happens. I'm not going to be upset in the least if anything should happen to one of the ukes I haul around town with me. On the other hand, I would be very grumpy indeed if **** happened to an expensive instrument.

Cheap ukes work out pretty well for me right now, but eventually I'll invest in a higher quality instrument just to play at home.

Manalishi
10-04-2013, 10:40 PM
I own three luthier built instruments,but still play my Makala 'Dolphin' as much as any of the others!

hucklelele
10-04-2013, 11:22 PM
I've looked at a lot of lower end ukes lately- and I'd probably call that under $150, and even under $100-

the one real diiference I see sometimes at often about the same cost are the tuners- usually plastic as opposed to die cast-

give me die cast any day , for the same cost or slightly more, and ONLY BECAUSE those plastic tuning knobs can sometimes break off the pegs
and die cast are musch sturdier even if they don't have the same quaint appearance-

a set of either can be had for less than $10

Ambient Doughnut
10-05-2013, 12:42 AM
Someone gave me one of the mahalo smiley ukes for my last birthday and despite some negative reviews I've read it's actually a nice little uke. Sure it's not especially resonant but so what? Sometimes that's the right sound anyway. Even the strings it came with aren't bad. I expect it will sound better still if I do restring it.

savagehenry
10-05-2013, 02:19 AM
I have found that I really like the woody tone of some of the high end ukes that I have played. Most of the midrange ukes that I own or have played sound nice, but tend to lack the tonal character of a more expensive ukulele. Last year I saved up and was looking to get a new tenor in the $400-700 but as I played more ukes, I just didn't hear the tone I liked or at least couldn't justify that kind of money for a new uke that sounded a little better than what I had. I heard a Luna Tattoo and was amazed. It was loud and woody and cheap. I ordered on e from HMS and it came set up perfectly. I put Worth low g strings on it and it sounds amazing. To my ear, one of the best sounding tenors I have played, it's woody, has character, is loud, and cost under $150. While trying to find a new ukulele I kept raising my limit because I couldn't find the sound I was looking for. Who could have guessed that I would find it at the other end of the spectrum sometimes cheap is awesome!

TG&Y
10-05-2013, 11:50 AM
Embrace your inner laminate.

UkeKiddinMe
10-05-2013, 12:09 PM
This has been a fun thread. I didn't expect the response. Very interesting.
Most of my threads die with 2 posts.

:cool:

Appalachian picker
10-05-2013, 12:18 PM
What does it matter.....as long as you play the thing and enjoy it....isn't that what counts?

I am retiring from the US Army next year at the age of 53. I've worked hard and saved to not have to work for the rest of my life if I choose not to. As a consequence I've made choices....and my choice of uke currently is a "Kingstone" vintage baritone that I got from eBay for $40. I love it, play it daily and get lots of satisfaction from it....but NOT because it only cost $40.

59538

Bumgardner
10-05-2013, 03:36 PM
I can appreciate making a beater of an instrument sound awesome.

On the other hand, I like really nice hand made instruments. For me it is as much about the tone as it is about the quality of workmanship.

Dwjkerr
10-05-2013, 04:13 PM
What does it matter.....as long as you play the thing and enjoy it....isn't that what counts?

I agree. Having said that, I would much rather listen to someone making a beater sing, than someone twanging away on a 1500 dollar custom job.

mm stan
10-05-2013, 04:26 PM
MY ROGUE SOPRANO $24.95 I still enjoy it and it gets played every day.... :)

Freeda
10-05-2013, 05:06 PM
I think my Luna was about 70 bucks. I still love her dearly and play her more often than anything. (I have a couple $3-400 range and one $600 range.)

hucklelele
10-05-2013, 06:28 PM
Surely it's part of the reason for the ukulele boom of late- the instrument is lightweight and can be taken along, in our mobile world-
and if you can' take it wioth you, you can probably afford another one down the line-

I hate to admit, even the classical guitar is wearing me down a little sooner these days- I'll be 60 soon- but I can fidget this little uke anyplace it seems and it isn't a strain-

heck, maybe I'll hang one by the toilet!

AndrewKuker
10-05-2013, 10:24 PM
I can have fun with almost any Uke. But I could liken it to food. I will enjoy chex mix, I can love a $3 taco next door. But when I get to Alan Wongs it is a treat to the senses, and I know why I pay more. Some people wouldn't see the value. But I do. I work my butt off. I Don't watch tv, and put a lot of effort to what I do. Having nicer things is not worth the stress of debt. But I don't buy new cars. I wear t shirts and go to the vans outlets for my $20 tennis shoes. But I love great musical instruments. My warrior bass improved my quality of life.
I recently got a Uke from Chuck Moore and tonight I sat under the moonlight as my kids played in the park next to the beach. Such sweet sounds took me to a higher place and I can't imagine a more satisfying feeling.
don't hate on either side of the coin. A less expensive Uke can make great music and be a fun companion. But more expensive Ukes , for some people will give an experience well beyond, and that appreciation is not snobbish.

UkeKiddinMe
10-06-2013, 02:29 AM
I have to re-read the thread to make a judgement on if anyone is hatin' on the other side of the coin.
But as the guy who started the thread, please know that there is no negativity projected for the other side.
In my case, it's simply a matter of the fun of one v.s. the other. But, no negativity in any way, shape, or form intended.
Peace. :cool:

HBolte
10-06-2013, 02:57 AM
As usual, Andrew says it best! I really appreciate the sound, look and feel of a fine hand made ukulele. And yes, those taco's next door are good!

TG&Y
10-06-2013, 05:33 AM
That's where my orange Dolphin hangs out most of the time.


Surely it's part of the reason for the ukulele boom of late- the instrument is lightweight and can be taken along, in our mobile world-
and if you can' take it wioth you, you can probably afford another one down the line-

I hate to admit, even the classical guitar is wearing me down a little sooner these days- I'll be 60 soon- but I can fidget this little uke anyplace it seems and it isn't a strain-

heck, maybe I'll hang one by the toilet!

Ukejenny
10-06-2013, 09:25 AM
I am bi-polar when it comes to ukuleles. If it feels good and sounds good, then I love it, regardless of the price. I started on my son's blue Mahalo and I will never sell it. I've put new strings on it and replaced the bridge with a chopstick and lowered the nut with a butter knife. The intonation is bad, so I think I will take it in and see if anything can be done. I still play it. Will always love it. I don't own a professional uke. I love looking at the custom builds here and the vintage beauties, along with the K brands and everything that y'all are finding. I am not ready to make a pro purchase, so I'm enjoying what I have. I may never buy a K brand or professional uke. My Ohana concert should be ready tomorrow - having the nut lowered and the bridge checked. I can't wait to play it.

Hippie Dribble
10-06-2013, 09:36 AM
The Office...
59547

That's where my orange Dolphin hangs out most of the time.

HBolte
10-06-2013, 09:59 AM
The Office...
59547

Gotta love Eugene!!

UkeKiddinMe
10-06-2013, 12:59 PM
The Office...
59547

Hopefully, there is a sacred, set order of the use of the things in that Office - an order that is never broken? :)

mikelz777
10-06-2013, 02:12 PM
How much time do you guys spend on the toilet?

HBolte
10-06-2013, 02:23 PM
I guess I like em cheap too. My old Martin cost only $12.00 new!

kohanmike
10-06-2013, 06:20 PM
OK, I'm getting nuts now. I just found a Lanikai SMP-TCA solid Monkeypod tenor cutaway electric blem for $124, sells for over $330. Can't help myself, gotta order it.

59562

AndrewKuker
10-06-2013, 07:30 PM
I have to re-read the thread to make a judgement on if anyone is hatin' on the other side of the coin.
But as the guy who started the thread, please know that there is no negativity projected for the other side.
In my case, it's simply a matter of the fun of one v.s. the other. But, no negativity in any way, shape, or form intended.
Peace. :cool:

Oh ya totally, I didn't mean that to be pointed at you or anyone, just in general. This thread has no hate. All good thoughts

hawaii 50
10-06-2013, 08:05 PM
Oh ya totally, I didn't mean that to be pointed at you or anyone, just in general. This thread has no hate. All good thoughts

I agree there is no hate on this thread...

I love how Andrew who sees/plays all kinds of ukes expensive or not everyday of his life...can fall in love with the Ukulele all over again like the rest of us...

no matter the cost...the ukulele is priceless to many of us...

my 2 cents

Skrik
10-06-2013, 09:29 PM
I'm going to offer a different opinion. The custom ukulele I have on order is going to save me time and money.

I have bought a number of low-end-to mid-range instruments in the past few years. Every single one of them is unsatisfactory in one way or another. It might be lack of intonation, badly dressed frets, the bridge lifting, bellying, whatever. Any one of these things is irritating, and leads me to look for the next ukulele. Finding the next ukulele causes outlay on yet another unsatisfactory instrument. Rinse and repeat.

I decided a couple of years ago that ordering an instrument exactly the way I wanted a ukulele to be would make it unnecessary for me to continue my search. I can concentrate solely on playing music, rest assured that there is no better instrument out there.

It's costing me around $1500, but I will never NEED to buy a ukulele again, which in the long term will save me the steady drip of money spent on, let's face it, inadequate ukuleles.

hammer40
10-06-2013, 11:36 PM
It's costing me around $1500, but I will never NEED to buy a ukulele again, which in the long term will save me the steady drip of money spent on, let's face it, inadequate ukuleles.

At least you hope so...LOL.

Although, you did say NEED, but look out for WANT. I spent a lot of money on my Compass Rose, and I still WANT more, they are just more expensive now that I have experienced that level of an instrument.

FiL
10-07-2013, 03:24 AM
This has certainly been an interesting thread. Personally, I'm more of a lower-end guy. I'd love to have custom, American-made ukes, but I like variety, so I wouldn't be able to have just one, and I can't afford several. Yes, I do wish some of my ukes had better intonation. But sound-wise, I know that I don't have a good enough ear to justify the cost of a custom uke. And playing-wise, I'm not sure that I deserve one (yet!). Plus, I'd be afraid to take it anywhere for fear of scratching it (I can be hard on my instruments), and I firmly believe that instruments are mean to be played, not hidden away in cases.

If I could be happy with just one type of uke and I knew what I wanted, then I can certainly see the logic in buying one very nice uke, instead of going through a lot of unsatisfactory ones. And I do love the idea of supporting small, independent luthiers. Someday...

- FiL

bunnyf
10-07-2013, 03:57 AM
FIL, I'm with you. I am not worthy of some of the ukes I am lucky enough to have (custom LoPrinzi tenor w MiSi). I am an intermediate player at best and can't say that I have a great ear. I also play alot and can be hard on my ukes. My custom ukes are beautiful to look at and sound very nice but I still love my beaters. I have to say, though, that my beaters play fairly well. I'm not terribly fussy but someone came over with an old 40s or 50s bari and it really played poorly and this would bother me if it were my only uke. I'd have start working on it even though I'm not terribly knowledgeable. I'd have to start reading up and watching youtube vids on setups and troubleshooting. But if I only had a starter Kala or Lanikai with a decent setup and good strings, I'd be happy as a clam, everything else you get is just the icing on the cake.

DaveY
10-07-2013, 04:13 AM
no matter the cost...the ukulele is priceless to many of us...

my 2 cents

actually, I think your words are priceless probably the wisest, most succinct ones I've read on the power of ukes

Gumby Ya Ya
10-07-2013, 05:47 AM
Funny thing (sorry, not funny haha) my Lanakai LU21 ($65) my first uke sounds like a Uke should sound (to me anyway). It's got that sweet sweet sound. I had also got an Ohana S300KG, ($350) solid Koa, not Laminate Nato. It's sound is much more complex than the Lanakai, beautiful sound (and look), but to these not so discerning ears, it just doesn't have that sweet simple Uke sound. It seems better for John King classical uke, but doesn't quite have the ocean breeze sweetness the Lanakai has. Even played the Lanakai at a wedding and it was fine-I was not embarrassed by the sound. Maybe my ears haven't developed enough yet, and it does seem like some of the sound on the Lanakai is trapped inside the uke, while the more expensive one, let's it all hang out.

I had a friend on his way to a gig, his Uke in the backseat of the car in plain view. He needed to pick up something from KMart. He was in there only 10 min, when he came back he realized he forgot to lock the car door. Yep, the inevitable happened; when he got back to the car, there were now 2 Ukes...

sonomajazz
10-07-2013, 07:14 AM
Great thread here...
Haven't taken the time to read each thread but will go back and peruse...

I have my share of "bargain ukes", Bushman, Mainland, Kamoa, Oscar Schmidt, Lanikai, Clearwater, (had an OU but sold it), but my main players are Kelii and KoAloha and I have a Ken Franklin custom on order. I guess I traveled the "low end uke"
road and didn't like it. I keep them around for friends to play and for lessons.
Ditto with guitars...have several but play my Goodall and Fender custom shop...

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
10-08-2013, 12:50 PM
I like cheap too. I get all my custom ukes for free.

hawaii 50
10-08-2013, 01:00 PM
I like cheap too. I get all my custom ukes for free.

do you need a employee...haha

GKK
10-09-2013, 06:38 AM
It's the player that makes the biggest difference...

I'm sure Jake, Aldrine or Dominator can play a concert with any brand uke and it will sound Awesome!!!...

greenie44
10-09-2013, 07:38 AM
I switched on this topic recently. My history is that I had some very inexpensive ukes for years and never took to them - a combo of the quality and the fact that they were sopranos, which is less comfortable for me.

I found a 6 string Lanikai at the Aloha Stadium flea market and fell in love. Thus started my journey. I picked up what I thought was a backup - another Lanikai 6 string, but a Koa cutaway - and I like it even more, so this speaks to how different ukes, especially at the lower end, can be different.

Then I decided that I was involved enough to get a 'good' uke, so I got a Kanile'a Super Tenor. Frankly, it never took. It's a wonderful uke, but I played my Lanikais more. I even spent some quality time with the Kanile'a on vacation, which made me more comfortable with it, but it was still just neck and neck with the Lanikai.

Then I found it - my dream uke, a Collings UT2 K. This one is head and shoulders over any of my other ukes. I don't play it all the time - my Lanikai is still next to my desk, while the Collings is in a case next to it - but the Collings is a treat every time I pick it up.

So I guess I would say, from my limited experience, that the highs are higher at the high end. This doesn't mean, to me, that all high end ukes are better than all lower priced ukes, but it is an indicator.

Oh, and I have 2 8-strings - a Pono and an Oscar Schmdit. The Pono cost me 4x more - and I don't hear a noticeable difference between them. If 8-strings was my default mode, the need to tune the Schmidt more would make a difference, but for the amount of time I play it, it all comes out in the wash.

sukie
10-09-2013, 09:29 AM
bad intonation is bad intonation. Not even jake can fix that. And I'm sure trying to compensate the intonation by doing slight string tension adjustments on the fly is just utterly irritating to someone like him.

But I didn't hear the OP talk about bad intonation.

That's a whole different matter. And, IMHO, sometimes some of the things people talk about -- buzzing for instance-- is user error, not the ukulele. I can make my ukulele buzz but it's me, not the uke. Trust me.

Leodhas
10-09-2013, 10:05 AM
If you're into cheap ukes then you're into them, it's an actual thing in itself, as is spending a lot of cash on ukes. That's if you look on the ukes as little treasures to collect and play about with for fun (which I think is most of us).

I do have a thing for the cheaper ukes, but then again I'm a tinkerer, meaning I'm comfortable messing about with the instruments themselves in terms of set-up and the like. I started another thread not to long ago about a recent purchase I made for 58 ($80-ish) it is a cheap Chinese made tenor, however it is a solid Koa top. I had to file down the saddle and nut and file down the 2nd and 3rd fret a wee bit to stop some fret buzz, but now it really is sounding just lovely. I would say a 300 sound, basically good enough and all in for 58, plus it looks great!

I also love the really fun stuff like the dolphins and I have a 12 uke that sits on the sofa next to me on an evening and gets played as much as any instrument I have. I had to mess with it, but it stays in tune now.

On a more serious note, I come from a guitar background and been playing uke for 5 years-ish now and one thing I've noticed is that it's much easier to get away with using a low end/cheaper uke for gigging than it is with a guitar.

The quality of sound one can get out of a uke that hasn't cost a lot of money is staggeringly high compared to the guitar (in my experience). Which sort of makes sense as there is more that can go wrong on a guitar. I've used a basic Kala KAT for one song in my sets for nearly 2 years now with no problem, in fact it sounds sweet as! However, I would never use a comparative 70 ($100-ish) guitar for a gig simply because the quality of instrument isn't high enough (falling in and out of tune and the like).

For me ukes are fun things to be messed about with, but you really can get an excellent sound out of a comparatively cheap uke.

Below is the 58 ($80) solid Koa Top uke after my tinkering. (it sounds top).

http://img703.imageshack.us/img703/6096/bxir.jpg

Rick Turner
10-09-2013, 08:04 PM
Cheap ukes rule!

As do all cheap products made in countries where the minimum wage is well under the $8.75 an hour that I cannot pay my employees because even the most raw starting guys are worth at least $11.00 an hour.

All you "cheap is good" folks should be working for minimum wage...China-style...for a while. Yeah, you're hip; you're smart; you've got it way ahead of the bourgeoisie in the US. You've got it all figured out. Out-source it and it's great. WalMart is King.

F-you...

And then maybe someday you'll want goods and products that aren't predetermined to be land fill. Maybe you'll want to buy stuff that you can proudly hand off to your kids who will appreciate your taste and intelligence. Maybe you'll decide to leave behind more than you came in with.

That's what it is with buying good shit, whether it's a dining room table or a good uke. It's about not buying into the consumer culture where all goods are obsolete in two years. It's about adding to the wealth of the next generation, not depleting the earth of resources. It's about supporting a sustainable future where we leave the earth with better than we found it when we came in.

This is why I revere the vintage instruments I own while trying to carry on the tradition of making really good stuff. I want to be building the vintage instruments of the future. I want to create ukes, guitars, etc. that will be valued as great musical tools 100, 200, and 300 years from now.

And that is what makes expensive instruments inexpensive in the long run.

And they're not f...ing land fill in ten years like your cheap ukes will be...

NewKid
10-10-2013, 01:00 AM
We're all land fill in the end. Cheap ukes allow poor people to enjoy making music and encourage trial by newbies. Certainly, wastefulness is wrong but this thread seems to be rationalizing making the best out of what you can afford.

By the way, I'm a big fan of your ukuleles Rick. I've said before you could charge twice what you do for them. So rather than calling your ukes cheap, I just think they're a great value.

AndrewKuker
10-10-2013, 01:20 AM
Cheap ukes rule!

As do all cheap products made in countries where the minimum wage is well under the $8.75 an hour that I cannot pay my employees because even the most raw starting guys are worth at least $11.00 an hour.

All you "cheap is good" folks should be working for minimum wage...China-style...for a while. Yeah, you're hip; you're smart; you've got it way ahead of the bourgeoisie in the US. You've got it all figured out. Out-source it and it's great. WalMart is King.

F-you...

And then maybe someday you'll want goods and products that aren't predetermined to be land fill. Maybe you'll want to buy stuff that you can proudly hand off to your kids who will appreciate your taste and intelligence. Maybe you'll decide to leave behind more than you came in with.

That's what it is with buying good shit, whether it's a dining room table or a good uke. It's about not buying into the consumer culture where all goods are obsolete in two years. It's about adding to the wealth of the next generation, not depleting the earth of resources. It's about supporting a sustainable future where we leave the earth with better than we found it when we came in.

This is why I revere the vintage instruments I own while trying to carry on the tradition of making really good stuff. I want to be building the vintage instruments of the future. I want to create ukes, guitars, etc. that will be valued as great musical tools 100, 200, and 300 years from now.

And that is what makes expensive instruments inexpensive in the long run.

And they're not f...ing land fill in ten years like your cheap ukes will be...

I hear you Rick. Harsh but audacious.

Most of us can't help but be a part of this world and still face economic survival on some level. I am glad for the less expensive option and not for business or personal reasons.

Some people are young, or young to this, or not ready to commit, or unable to afford, or simply prefer what you don't. It's nice that they can still get a musical instrument that they can make music on.

Some will never have what you consider good, ukulele or dining room table. Life can be hectic and the world is unforgiving. Music is an important refuge from the insanity.

We try to make the world better with with QC and work daily on improving the affordable. It's quite distressing but what we are qualified to provide.

I appreciate what you create. Keep up the fine work. But there are many ways to leave the world a better place. Your choice of ukulele is still pretty low on the totem pole.

mm stan
10-10-2013, 01:22 AM
I like cheap too. I get all my custom ukes for free.
If you get some connections of that guy living in his dream house with his love, tell him I need a concert...LOL hee hee :)

ukemunga
10-10-2013, 01:47 AM
Rick, if everyone had to wait until they could afford your incredible intsruments there would be a helluva lot fewer ukulele players in this world. And I, certainly, would be one of them. And very unhappy. But, someday...

Hippie Dribble
10-10-2013, 02:09 AM
Rick, if everyone had to wait until they could afford your incredible intsruments there would be a helluva lot fewer ukulele players in this world.
yep. this.

sukie
10-10-2013, 03:09 AM
You know Rick Turner not everyone is made of money. Not everyone can afford, nor want, one of your expensive ukuleles. Not everyone believes that buying the most expensive things available is the way to go. I am one of the first to admit consumerism is totally out of whack, but do you have to be so nasty about it?

If people want to buy inexpensive ukuleles why not? I just don't think they should bitch about the quality. And I don't think that what is thread is about, so I am digressing.

UkuleleHill
10-10-2013, 03:41 AM
Cheap ukes rule!

As do all cheap products made in countries where the minimum wage is well under the $8.75 an hour that I cannot pay my employees because even the most raw starting guys are worth at least $11.00 an hour.

All you "cheap is good" folks should be working for minimum wage...China-style...for a while. Yeah, you're hip; you're smart; you've got it way ahead of the bourgeoisie in the US. You've got it all figured out. Out-source it and it's great. WalMart is King.

F-you...

And then maybe someday you'll want goods and products that aren't predetermined to be land fill. Maybe you'll want to buy stuff that you can proudly hand off to your kids who will appreciate your taste and intelligence. Maybe you'll decide to leave behind more than you came in with.

That's what it is with buying good shit, whether it's a dining room table or a good uke. It's about not buying into the consumer culture where all goods are obsolete in two years. It's about adding to the wealth of the next generation, not depleting the earth of resources. It's about supporting a sustainable future where we leave the earth with better than we found it when we came in.

This is why I revere the vintage instruments I own while trying to carry on the tradition of making really good stuff. I want to be building the vintage instruments of the future. I want to create ukes, guitars, etc. that will be valued as great musical tools 100, 200, and 300 years from now.

And that is what makes expensive instruments inexpensive in the long run.

And they're not f...ing land fill in ten years like your cheap ukes will be...

Rick, I understand what you are saying, and believe me, I agree that cheap does not always mean good... But this is a light hearted thread... There is no need for strong language to get the point across. I'm guessing that 99% of those that play uke probably started on a cheap one and then moved up. So without cheap ukuleles in the market there would probably be a much smaller market for higher end ukuleles much like your own.

prooftheory
10-10-2013, 03:58 AM
There are some ethical considerations that Rick comes close to bringing up.
Should you spend a lot of money on a ukulele when that money might be better spent on improving people's lives?
Should you support people in developing countries who are making a living by crafting cheap ukuleles?
Should you support factories that are basically exploiting these people by making them work for low wages to produce commoditized ukuleles?
Should you support craftsmen who are invested in the art of ukulele luthier?
Should you support them when they may be more productive for society doing something else?
Should you buy instruments created with rare hardwoods that are being overharvested?
Should you buy instruments that are going to need to be replaced soon and will therefore be a waste of man hours/carbon/landfill etc.?
Should you spend more for a domestic ukulele even if you like the sound of the cheap import more?
Should ukulele purchases be limited to people who have lots of disposable income, i.e. should you be allowed to spend money on one if you are having trouble finding food and housing?

I don't have any answers to these but I think that they are worth being mindful of when making a purchase.

DaveY
10-10-2013, 04:53 AM
I hear you Rick. Harsh but audacious.

Most of us can't help but be a part of this world and still face economic survival on some level. I am glad for the less expensive option and not for business or personal reasons.

Some people are young, or young to this, or not ready to commit, or unable to afford, or simply prefer what you don't. It's nice that they can still get a musical instrument that they can make music on.

Some will never have what you consider good, ukulele or dining room table. Life can be hectic and the world is unforgiving. Music is an important refuge from the insanity.

We try to make the world better with with QC and work daily on improving the affordable. It's quite distressing but what we are qualified to provide.

I appreciate what you create. Keep up the fine work. But there are many ways to leave the world a better place. Your choice of ukulele is still pretty low on the totem pole.

You probably can't see or hear me, but I am applauding this right now . . .

Dwjkerr
10-10-2013, 05:05 AM
"And then maybe someday you'll want goods and products that aren't predetermined to be land fill. Maybe you'll want to buy stuff that you can proudly hand off to your kids who will appreciate your taste and intelligence. Maybe you'll decide to leave behind more than you came in with."

And maybe and maybe and meanwhile those of us who will never be able to afford a custom made uke, or custom made anything else, should just forget about it.

emmaemme
10-10-2013, 05:30 AM
I hear you Rick. Harsh but audacious.

Most of us can't help but be a part of this world and still face economic survival on some level. I am glad for the less expensive option and not for business or personal reasons.

Some people are young, or young to this, or not ready to commit, or unable to afford, or simply prefer what you don't. It's nice that they can still get a musical instrument that they can make music on.

Some will never have what you consider good, ukulele or dining room table. Life can be hectic and the world is unforgiving. Music is an important refuge from the insanity.

We try to make the world better with with QC and work daily on improving the affordable. It's quite distressing but what we are qualified to provide.

I appreciate what you create. Keep up the fine work. But there are many ways to leave the world a better place. Your choice of ukulele is still pretty low on the totem pole.

Wow, you put that fire out quickly!!! Exactly my thoughts. Thanks!!

I've had a Rogue, Ohana, Eleuke, Clearwater and Kala in different sizes. All good entry level instruments that have come and gone. That perfect maybe a more expensive instrument...


...maybe not.

buddhuu
10-10-2013, 05:47 AM
I doubt there are many of us who wouldn't jump at the chance of an instrument built by Rick or Chuck or Pete or Ken or Beau.

Meanwhile, back in the real world, some of us can't stretch to it. I've been playing guitar for over 40 years and mandolin and 'ukulele for rather fewer years. I have rarely been in a position to own expensive instruments although I've played plenty.

I'm not entirely ignorant about the construction of instruments. I've built a very few and repaired and set up many. I am aware of the limitations of budget instruments. I am aware of overbuilt guitars and ukes that can't begin to approach the richness and resonance of luthier built examples. I'm aware that the neck joint on a cheap mass-produced guitar may be set at too shallow an angle so that the action will never come down enough no matter how much one lowers the saddle or bridge. I'm aware that a thick poly finish will never look or feel like nitro or oil or french polish. Etc etc etc.

I'm also aware that, if one knows the pitfalls to check for, then one can find decent sounding, very playable instruments at affordable prices. I play a Mexican made Taylor Big Baby guitar. It is light, resonant and well made. It plays great and sounds good. What's more, Taylor's helpful support people already sent me a set of neck shims FOC so I can set it up for slide playing. Cheap, in that case, doesn't mean landfill.

I play a Squier Classic Vibe Strat. It's Chinese and it is flat out an excellent electric guitar. I would not swap it for the Gibson SG I owned in the late 70s.

I play a several years old Kentucky KM-505 mandolin. It's served me as a gigging mando for years.

"Worst" of all, I play a Stagg solid mahogany soprano 'ukulele. It was the first uke we ever bought. Other ukes have come and gone, but we've always kept this one. It plays and sounds great. It came from a Chinese production line, but it is lightly and accurately built. (On the other hand I once had a Stagg concert that had a poorly positioned bridge.)

It is not possible to make blanket generalisations about instruments. Someone, or several someones, will produce exceptions that disprove the reliability of those generalisations.

Some of us save for years to buy fine instruments. Some of us work with what we've got in order to make music NOW.

Let's also get the political/economic side of things out of the way, as that is not the focus of this forum.

Check your cars, stereos, smart phones, computers etc. The first person who can demonstrate that they own nothing containing components made by underpaid workers in developing countries gets to do the moral high ground thing without challenge and without running the risk of accusations of hypocrisy - so long as they can do it without being rude and abusive.

Rude and abusive is aginst UU rules.

Leodhas
10-10-2013, 05:48 AM
Rick, the basic gist I got from your post is that you want more Americans to buy American made quality goods and that's fair enough, I understand the concerns you have for your country and it's people.

Nevertheless, surely the place for that opinion is a website specifically for American folk. Makes no difference to me if a uke is made in China, America, Scotland or Pakistan, the citizens of all these countries, to my understanding, can become part of this websites community? I'm sure any Chinese members are very proud of their countries' made ukuleles and respective economic growth, you know, the stuff you just dismiss as landfill, the ukuleles that bring countless people joy all over the planet. People all over the world have to live and work within their own social/economic structure. America, although a wonderful place with generally fantastic people, is not the only country in the world.

kkimura
10-10-2013, 06:37 AM
I believe there will always be a market for the best quality products whether they are Ukuleles or cars. The threat is not the "cheap" ukes on the market today. The threat is the $9.00 an hour 3rd world luthier with the same skill set as our top domestic luthiers that will start selling top quality ukes tomorrow.

silveraven
10-10-2013, 06:54 AM
My uke is cheap and made in China, but it plays alright. After converting USD to my country's currency, it's not so cheap, but still alright. If I have a lot of disposable income, I'd definitely go for a better quality uke, but for now, my cheap made in China uke is fine. Not like I can tell if the intonation is on or off at this point. :p

...actually, if I have all the money in the world, I'd rather use it to travel and gain more experience. Now THAT would definitely not end up in a landfill. ;)

TG&Y
10-10-2013, 07:01 AM
As to landfills...

I imagine my Dolphin will outlive me. As will the Oscar Schmidts, Kalas and Mainlands I'm fortunate enough to have in my life. It's also likely that I will never possess the skill, try try as a I may, to deliver the full magic each of them has waiting inside. Yes, even the plastic Carnival soprano. It's almost an embarrassment of riches. They all delight me.

gCEA!

GKK
10-10-2013, 07:16 AM
There is a place for all Ukulele's in America!...

Remember,... Every instument sold whether imported or domestic, helps each individual music store survive.

salukulady
10-10-2013, 07:25 AM
I never send my cheap ukes to landfills. It's cold, dark and dirty there. I give them to beginners with the promise they will pass them on when they upgrade to a fancy CR.

seeso
10-10-2013, 07:30 AM
Cheap ukes rule!

As do all cheap products made in countries where the minimum wage is well under the $8.75 an hour that I cannot pay my employees because even the most raw starting guys are worth at least $11.00 an hour.

All you "cheap is good" folks should be working for minimum wage...China-style...for a while. Yeah, you're hip; you're smart; you've got it way ahead of the bourgeoisie in the US. You've got it all figured out. Out-source it and it's great. WalMart is King.

F-you...

And then maybe someday you'll want goods and products that aren't predetermined to be land fill. Maybe you'll want to buy stuff that you can proudly hand off to your kids who will appreciate your taste and intelligence. Maybe you'll decide to leave behind more than you came in with.

That's what it is with buying good shit, whether it's a dining room table or a good uke. It's about not buying into the consumer culture where all goods are obsolete in two years. It's about adding to the wealth of the next generation, not depleting the earth of resources. It's about supporting a sustainable future where we leave the earth with better than we found it when we came in.

This is why I revere the vintage instruments I own while trying to carry on the tradition of making really good stuff. I want to be building the vintage instruments of the future. I want to create ukes, guitars, etc. that will be valued as great musical tools 100, 200, and 300 years from now.

And that is what makes expensive instruments inexpensive in the long run.

And they're not f...ing land fill in ten years like your cheap ukes will be...

Rick, saying "F-you..." to a wide swath of our members is not okay in this forum. I don't care who it comes from. Take a week to chill out.

Moore Bettah Ukuleles
10-10-2013, 07:43 AM
My uke is cheap and made in China, but it plays alright. After converting USD to my country's currency, it's not so cheap, but still alright. If I have a lot of disposable income, I'd definitely go for a better quality uke, but for now, my cheap made in China uke is fine. Not like I can tell if the intonation is on or off at this point. :p

...actually, if I have all the money in the world, I'd rather use it to travel and gain more experience. Now THAT would definitely not end up in a landfill. ;)

I totally agree. It's a matter of where your priorities are.
In general I'm not a fan of cheap, disposable crap. (I remember when there were fix-it shops that you could bring in your TV or toaster to get repaired.)
How much I'm willing to spend on something is directly proportional to how important it is is my life. When it comes to clothes, I'm thrilled to go to WalMart and buy shorts for $9 and and tank tops for $6. My 15 year old truck is all the vehicle I'll ever need; I've got no place to go on an island anyway. Real, durable goods that improve the quality of my life are my passion; shop tools and garden equipment. I have some that are almost as old as I am. Travel is another thing I'm not shy of spending money on. The things I love really enrich my life and some of those things come with a price tag. Other things I know I'll only use once, it'll fall apart and I'll throw it away. I'm OK with that as long as the price reflects it's cheap quality.
I am not threatened by all the cheap ukes out there. The more ukes that are in the market of any quality is good for the ukulele world in general. The more the merrier! At the same time I am deeply saddened that we live in a disposable world, a world in which we disregard our environment and natural resources. I'd rather have a few good quality things, things I value and love than be surrounded by a bunch of junk. We've turned a corner in screwing up our planet and I'm afraid there's no turning back. Make responsible consumer choices. Know your priorities.

salukulady
10-10-2013, 08:33 AM
I agree with Mr. Moore.

Anyone know any company that builds a good microwave? My first one lasted 25 years. Only gave it away because someone gave me a smaller shiny one. In five years I have retired 3 smaller shiny ones, all POS.

Shoulda kept the big ugly monster. Bet it's still running.

UncleElvis
10-10-2013, 08:43 AM
I totally agree. It's a matter of where your priorities are.
In general I'm not a fan of cheap, disposable crap. (I remember when there were fix-it shops that you could bring in your TV or toaster to get repaired.)
How much I'm willing to spend on something is directly proportional to how important it is is my life. When it comes to clothes, I'm thrilled to go to WalMart and buy shorts for $9 and and tank tops for $6. My 15 year old truck is all the vehicle I'll ever need; I've got no place to go on an island anyway. Real, durable goods that improve the quality of my life are my passion; shop tools and garden equipment. I have some that are almost as old as I am. Travel is another thing I'm not shy of spending money on. The things I love really enrich my life and some of those things come with a price tag. Other things I know I'll only use once, it'll fall apart and I'll throw it away. I'm OK with that as long as the price reflects it's cheap quality.
I am not threatened by all the cheap ukes out there. The more ukes that are in the market of any quality is good for the ukulele world in general. The more the merrier! At the same time I am deeply saddened that we live in a disposable world, a world in which we disregard our environment and natural resources. I've rather have a few good quality things, things I value and love and be surrounded by a bunch of junk. We've turned a corner in screwing up our planet and I'm afraid there's no turning back. Make responsible consumer choices. Know your priorities.

This.

(And, since you love to travel, I'll have you deliver my ukulele - when I order it, finally! - to Bermuda! *grin*)

bbycrts
10-10-2013, 11:12 AM
I like cheap too. I get all my custom ukes for free.

With the amount of work you put in? I wouldn't exactly call that free ;)

kohanmike
10-10-2013, 12:09 PM
I also disagree with that rant, I now have five ukes that I bought for under $200 each, and the first one, a plastic Mahalo, I sold to a ukulele mate for her grandson. If it ever comes a time that I will get rid of any others, I will either sell or give it to someone who will make use of it. (Just to add a moment of my own rant, I stopped using my garbage disposal after reading a report that so much ocean pollution is coming from using the disposal, instead of before it's invention when people put wet garbage in the garden as mulch.)

SailingUke
10-10-2013, 12:38 PM
I have a DaSilva, two Mya-Moe's, a Vento and a KoAloha in my collection along with a few vintage and many ordinary and lesser priced ukuleles.
I love ukulele, I find joy in playing any of them. I enjoy playing with others no matter what kind or price ukulele they have.
The bottom line is we all different values and resources.

Leodhas
10-10-2013, 01:08 PM
I don't know if there has been a thread on this before, and it's hard to search for.

The thread is about - your view of the enjoyment of low end ukes.

All my life, regardless of what instrument I played at the time, I always sought low end - low priced - equipment. It may seem strange, but I get satisfaction out of getting good tone out of something that doesn't cost much.

I'm totally not into instruments that are works of art. I can appreciate them a great deal from a distance, but I have no desire to own them.
Instead, I have always gravitated towards low end, ordinary stuff - that I try to get the most out of.

You?

This thread has strayed from the original post a wee bit.

I'm exactly the same UkeKiddinMe. It's a definite thing which I also get a buzz from. Some people sexually are into wearing gimp masks whilst sitting on carrots. When it comes to ukulele I'm into finding a bargain uke and making it into something special myself, improving it. psychologically I think it's like saving a fallen women?

I'd just like to state I don't, nor have I ever worn a gimp mask whilst engaged in the act of coitus and have never saved a fallen woman, especially the ones who like to jump from high buildings.

greenie44
10-10-2013, 01:22 PM
I'd just like to state I don't, nor have I ever worn a gimp mask whilst engaged in the act of coitus and have never saved a fallen woman, especially the ones who like to jump from high buildings.

+1 (well, not that anyone can prove) :nana:

TG&Y
10-10-2013, 05:00 PM
Slinte mhr agad!

Cheers back.

Retrieving the fallen has a certain ring to it.

Shazzbot
10-11-2013, 10:51 AM
"The sweetness of low price doesn't last nearly as long as the bitterness of poor quality."
You've got to find the right quality to price ratio that is right for you.
And I will always pay a bit more to support domestic industry.
I don't need a Mercedes, but I won't settle for a Yugo even if it runs good.
And I refuse to get a buzz from getting a super cheap deal on the backs of underpaid and overworked labor.
Elitist? Snob? Whatever.
Also, you will never see me in a Walmart.
Ever.

Leodhas
10-11-2013, 11:07 AM
Also, you will never see me in a Walmart.
Ever.

I notice a lot of American folk keep going on about these Walmarts, what exactly are they and whats so wrong with them?

Dwjkerr
10-11-2013, 11:36 AM
I notice a lot of American folk keep going on about these Walmarts, what exactly are they and whats so wrong with them?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wal-Mart

Flyinby
10-11-2013, 12:08 PM
I notice a lot of American folk keep going on about these Walmarts, what exactly are they and whats so wrong with them?

It's a large box store chain that sells a bit of everything, probably the largest in the US. Like anything that large, it develops a fringe element who thinks they are evil incarnate (remember the 'Bill Gates is Satan' posters?) Some might call that element a 'lunatic fringe', but I suppose it depends on your point of view. I probably wouldn't buy a uke there because they don't handle any that I like, but then I can think of at least one other I wouldn't buy one from after reading some of these posts.

I have a smiley-face Mahalo that can't help but bring a smile from kids etc. and a Chinese-made watermelon pineapple that has outstandingly perfect intonation after a bit of nut and saddle work. I don't care what country they're made in, there are decent people everywhere, and just because someone is in the US doesn't in itself qualify them as someone I'd want to buy from.

AndrewKuker
10-11-2013, 12:12 PM
The thing is, a lot of the small businesses buy through Sams Club, which is Walmart. So unless you're gonna go off the grid and start growing your own food and attempt an entirely different life you will be supporting the main corporations. Whether you know or not.

We ran Higher Ground Coffee and Music Cafe for a little over 2 years with only local grown organic foods and coffee and only locally made products. We lost a ton of money every month until we had call it quits. Ironically, our music store sold enough guitars and keyboards made in China to keep us afloat. For a lot of local uke builders their import line does a similar thing. The problem is not a race of people or the origin of a product. It's greed & no one is gonna solve it. Be nice to your family and give your best at work, the attainable. Walmart wholesales and you aren't aware to whom.

hammer40
10-11-2013, 12:18 PM
I just can't believe this thread is still going and at 10 pages.

TG&Y
10-11-2013, 02:29 PM
Interesting subject. One I'm interested in, anyway. 20 pages wouldn't surprise me. And I'd read them all. Sayin'


I just can't believe this thread is still going and at 10 pages.

UkeKiddinMe
10-11-2013, 02:44 PM
Wow. I miss a couple of days, and come back to - a pile of trash.

This started out as a harmless, fun discussion, and turned into something else.

Moderators - you should close this.

Hippie Dribble
10-11-2013, 02:51 PM
OK Frank, no worries mate. Putting this one to bed at request of OP.