PDA

View Full Version : Which Mainland ?



frukmana
11-25-2013, 01:45 PM
Hi guys, I'm thinking to purchase another soprano, an upgrade from my local soprano uke. And after searching for a while I think Mainland is the best bang for the bucks, with all that really positives review.

I've narrowed down my choice to Mainland Cmm sg and the one with red cedar top, which costs a bit more.
So what's the difference between those two ? Which do you prefer ?

Btw my budget is $300, and if you have another ukes to recommend you're welcome!
Thank you guys. :D

haolejohn
11-25-2013, 01:54 PM
I love the red cedar mainlands. I do believe those are hard to beat for their prices.
I am also a fan of Mele. But I would have to do a coin flip.

teruterubouzu
11-25-2013, 02:26 PM
I have not played a soprano, but I do love my red cedar Mainland tenor.

ukemunga
11-25-2013, 04:04 PM
It depends a great deal on what kind of sound you like from a soprano uke.

I really like Mainland's mahogany ukes. I've only played their mahogany and rosewood/cedar ukes. Both are great but I find I prefer a more mellow sound of mahogany as opposed to the bright and punchy of the cedar.

But those rosewood/cedar ukes are beautiful in every way.

frukmana
11-25-2013, 09:15 PM
I love the red cedar mainlands. I do believe those are hard to beat for their prices.
I am also a fan of Mele. But I would have to do a coin flip.

Wow Mele is such a nice instrument, I just google it. But its out of my range now.


It depends a great deal on what kind of sound you like from a soprano uke.

I really like Mainland's mahogany ukes. I've only played their mahogany and rosewood/cedar ukes. Both are great but I find I prefer a more mellow sound of mahogany as opposed to the bright and punchy of the cedar.

But those rosewood/cedar ukes are beautiful in every way.

I have a solid mahog soprano now , I like the tone but the fretbuzz alot and on some frets they sound dead ? Is that the right term to use ? Also i think its not loud. Now im confuse rather to upgrade my mahog or try something new and go for cedar.

PhilUSAFRet
11-26-2013, 12:35 AM
I had a Mele mahogany soprano. Gorgeous, but just didn't "sing" to me. I'd like to hear the koa topped one. I wouldn't overlook this one
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YatHdcIy6A

You can also get a KPK solid acacia in your price range. Kind of a "poor man's heavy Kamaka"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uYBHeuly4cs

If you can handle $385, I'd suggest this sweet Loprinzi on FMM.

frukmana
11-26-2013, 01:17 AM
I had a Mele mahogany soprano. Gorgeous, but just didn't "sing" to me. I'd like to hear the koa topped one. I wouldn't overlook this one
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YatHdcIy6A

You can also get a KPK solid acacia in your price range. Kind of a "poor man's heavy Kamaka"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uYBHeuly4cs

If you can handle $385, I'd suggest this sweet Loprinzi on FMM.

KPK looks a lot like Asmus and Asmus looks a lot like East Start ? Are they made of the same factory ?

That Loprinzi is sweeeet. Pardon my noobness but what is FMM ? And i think with all the taxes and shipping costs it'll cost me around $500... :(

Skitzic
11-26-2013, 01:36 AM
KPK looks a lot like Asmus and Asmus looks a lot like East Start ? Are they made of the same factory ?

That Loprinzi is sweeeet. Pardon my noobness but what is FMM ? And i think with all the taxes and shipping costs it'll cost me around $500... :(

Flea Market Music (https://www.fleamarketmusic.com/marketplace/default.asp). They have a classifieds section most of us stalk. :)

I have 2 red cedar sopranos. A figure 8 and a pineapple. They are the only sopranos I need. Loooooove me some red cedar!

Good luck with your decision.

TG&Y
11-26-2013, 03:02 AM
My third Mainland is in transit now and it's a mahogany soprano, which I decided on, based on opinions of someone here on the board. Really looking forward to it. It finishes my baseline Mainland trinity: A tenor in mango, a concert in red cedar and the mahogany soprano.

Let us know which or what you choose and how you like it. The red cedar soprano was really tempting...

PhilUSAFRet
11-26-2013, 03:14 AM
KPK been around for quite a while now. Many UU'ers happy with their's. I would never get rid of my acacia concert cutaway. The KPK acacia pineapple will compete favorably with much higher-end brands, but KPK's are a bit heavier than other. Doesn't seem to bother the tone, projection, or sustain on mine. I plan on getting the new KPK concert necked soprano pineapple when available. ASMUS newer. Sound clips available, sound decent. No buyer reviews as yet that I know of. One UU'er said they were a little "quiet." I couldn't tell that from sound clip.
RE: shipping and the LoPrinzi, I didn't know where you were located. That Ohana SK35 is basically a first cousin to the Mainland I think. You really can't lose with that Mainland. Just pointing out some options.

OldePhart
11-26-2013, 03:19 AM
I have a solid mahog soprano now , I like the tone but the fretbuzz alot and on some frets they sound dead ? Is that the right term to use ? Also i think its not loud. Now im confuse rather to upgrade my mahog or try something new and go for cedar.

Don't judge other mahogany instruments by the one you have (you described it earlier as a "local" so I'm guessing it's an inexpensive "starter" uke). It is probably laminated and even if solid, it is probably way overbuilt (not to mention the playability issues you describe with the frets and such).

The bottom line is that any of the Mainland sopranos are good instruments with great "bang for the buck." However, each is different. My Mainland mahogany soprano is my best uke (and I own a KoAloha longneck soprano and have owned a KoAloha concert, so that's saying something). The mahogany is warm and punchy without being "brittle." I suspect that this is a case of the uke being a "pick of the litter" because, while all of my Mainland ukes have been great value for the money, this is the only one that I consider the equal of a far more expensive Hawaiian uke. It is as loud as my KoAloha longneck soprano and intonates better.

My Mainland mango soprano is an entirely different animal - bright enough that I use Ko'Olau Gold strings to take a bit of the edge off but still very punchy and nice with very good intonation. I've not owned a cedar soprano but I did have a Mainland tenor in rosewood/red cedar. It was a very good uke, played well and very loud, but it is the only Mainland I've owned and don't own any more. I just couldn't warm to the sound of cedar on a ukulele so I gave it to a grandson.

Finally, keep in mind that once you have a good uke you may want to experiment with strings as they can make a huge difference in the character of the sound. I have around a half-dozen or so different strings that I've found I like and I try each of them on a new uke until I find what works best with that particular uke. For example, my mahogany soprano has very heavy clear fluorocarbon strings, my mango soprano gets concert size Ko'Olau gold strings, my KoAloha longneck soprano gets tenor Ko'Olau Alohi strings, and so on.

John

musiccityuker
11-26-2013, 03:38 AM
I have a Mainland and a Mele. Love 'em both! In fact, I have three Mele's and they're all keepers! I guess I'm partial to Mele. I like the owners there too... makes a big difference. You can't go wrong with either. Happy ukeing!

frukmana
11-26-2013, 03:41 AM
Wow guys thanks a lot for the opinions :D really appreciate it all, glad i join uu :D

Don't judge other mahogany instruments by the one you have (you described it earlier as a "local" so I'm guessing it's an inexpensive "starter" uke). It is probably laminated and even if solid, it is probably way overbuilt (not to mention the playability issues you describe with the frets and such).

The bottom line is that any of the Mainland sopranos are good instruments with great "bang for the buck." However, each is different. My Mainland mahogany soprano is my best uke (and I own a KoAloha longneck soprano and have owned a KoAloha concert, so that's saying something). The mahogany is warm and punchy without being "brittle." I suspect that this is a case of the uke being a "pick of the litter" because, while all of my Mainland ukes have been great value for the money, this is the only one that I consider the equal of a far more expensive Hawaiian uke. It is as loud as my KoAloha longneck soprano and intonates better.

My Mainland mango soprano is an entirely different animal - bright enough that I use Ko'Olau Gold strings to take a bit of the edge off but still very punchy and nice with very good intonation. I've not owned a cedar soprano but I did have a Mainland tenor in rosewood/red cedar. It was a very good uke, played well and very loud, but it is the only Mainland I've owned and don't own any more. I just couldn't warm to the sound of cedar on a ukulele so I gave it to a grandson.

Finally, keep in mind that once you have a good uke you may want to experiment with strings as they can make a huge difference in the character of the sound. I have around a half-dozen or so different strings that I've found I like and I try each of them on a new uke until I find what works best with that particular uke. For example, my mahogany soprano has very heavy clear fluorocarbon strings, my mango soprano gets concert size Ko'Olau gold strings, my KoAloha longneck soprano gets tenor Ko'Olau Alohi strings, and so on.

John

Hi John, the previous owner told me that this is a custom uke full solid mahogany with stripes bookmatched etc etc. But i'm not fully satisfied with it :( i only paid for $100 tho.
And thanks for the description and your opinion, really appreciate it. I think i'll go for the real "mahogany" this time :)
And I'm so gonna start to walk the path of strings (sounds like a great rpg, no ?)

Ps : Phil i live in Indonesia

frukmana
11-26-2013, 03:42 AM
Wow guys thanks a lot for the opinions :D really appreciate it all, glad i join uu :D

Don't judge other mahogany instruments by the one you have (you described it earlier as a "local" so I'm guessing it's an inexpensive "starter" uke). It is probably laminated and even if solid, it is probably way overbuilt (not to mention the playability issues you describe with the frets and such).

The bottom line is that any of the Mainland sopranos are good instruments with great "bang for the buck." However, each is different. My Mainland mahogany soprano is my best uke (and I own a KoAloha longneck soprano and have owned a KoAloha concert, so that's saying something). The mahogany is warm and punchy without being "brittle." I suspect that this is a case of the uke being a "pick of the litter" because, while all of my Mainland ukes have been great value for the money, this is the only one that I consider the equal of a far more expensive Hawaiian uke. It is as loud as my KoAloha longneck soprano and intonates better.

My Mainland mango soprano is an entirely different animal - bright enough that I use Ko'Olau Gold strings to take a bit of the edge off but still very punchy and nice with very good intonation. I've not owned a cedar soprano but I did have a Mainland tenor in rosewood/red cedar. It was a very good uke, played well and very loud, but it is the only Mainland I've owned and don't own any more. I just couldn't warm to the sound of cedar on a ukulele so I gave it to a grandson.

Finally, keep in mind that once you have a good uke you may want to experiment with strings as they can make a huge difference in the character of the sound. I have around a half-dozen or so different strings that I've found I like and I try each of them on a new uke until I find what works best with that particular uke. For example, my mahogany soprano has very heavy clear fluorocarbon strings, my mango soprano gets concert size Ko'Olau gold strings, my KoAloha longneck soprano gets tenor Ko'Olau Alohi strings, and so on.

John

Hi John, the previous owner told me that this is a custom uke full solid mahogany with stripes bookmatched etc etc. But i'm not fully satisfied with it :( i only paid for $100 tho.
And thanks for the description and your opinion, really appreciate it. I think i'll go for the real "mahogany" this time :)
And I'm so gonna start to walk the path of strings (sounds like a great rpg, no ?)

Ps : Phil i live in Indonesia

frukmana
12-01-2013, 09:22 PM
Ended buying Ohana TK35G from Mim. She's great to deal with. Can't wait :D

Five Ways
12-01-2013, 11:58 PM
I have the mainland red cedar concert with living water strings, which sounds very nice I would not part with it, good luck.

mm stan
12-02-2013, 12:11 AM
Yes Ole Phart is right...don't judge every uke even the same brand and same exact models.. they all will have a different voice....just like people and you and me
because of the many different variations in the building process.....If your budget is tight, be sure to be patient and get a second hand one from the
marketplaces...here and Flea Market Music... I got only one mainland, a mahogany honeybee soprano...it sounds amazing and plays very easy...
I bought it from another fellow friend member from here....I know I did pay around 300 for it...cant remember, it was long ago.. but my honeybee
was a limited edition with a pickup...it you like warm tones, the mahogany is the way to go and most popular....great starting point on a mainland...you can
always get the red cedar afterwards if you want.....good luck on your pick and happy strummings.. PS you can put a WTB post in the marketplace here too.. :)

Kyle23
12-02-2013, 02:03 AM
I had a Mele mahogany soprano. Gorgeous, but just didn't "sing" to me. I'd like to hear the koa topped one. I wouldn't overlook this one
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YatHdcIy6A

You can also get a KPK solid acacia in your price range. Kind of a "poor man's heavy Kamaka"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uYBHeuly4cs

If you can handle $385, I'd suggest this sweet Loprinzi on FMM.

I'm beginning to think you work for KPK! :p

frukmana
12-02-2013, 02:14 AM
Thanks for the input guys, will definitely buy a Mainland next year :D

TG&Y
12-02-2013, 03:15 AM
Missoula, MT, United States

12/02/2013

6:44 A.M.
Out For Delivery




Good luck with yours. I bet you'll love it.

frukmana
12-02-2013, 03:54 AM
Missoula, MT, United States

12/02/2013

6:44 A.M.
Out For Delivery




Good luck with yours. I bet you'll love it.

Looking forward to it. I'm waiting for the ohana now. Ughh patience isn't my best