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notgeorgeformby
03-19-2014, 10:14 AM
Anyone play the tenor guitar?

I'm looking at a small bodied one, and it looks somewhere between baritone uke and parlour guitar in size. And the steel strings might take a bit of getting used to.

peaceweaver3
03-19-2014, 10:54 AM
I'm thinking about it too. I haven't seen or played one in person, but from what I've read (in some Elderly Instruments descriptions) they're usually tuned in 5ths. That doesn't mean they can't be tuned differently, but it's something to be aware of. Hopefully someone with experience will chime in here. What I want is an octave uke without an octave uke price. There, I said it. :)

cb56
03-19-2014, 12:33 PM
I have two and I tune them like baritone ukes.
Use this string chart for proper strings.
65034

cb56
03-19-2014, 12:36 PM
Here is my Blueridge BR-40T (They go for around $400)Along with my Soares'y Fourcaster (around $300) and my Mainland red Cedar tenor uke.
65035
Ibanez is now selling a smaller tenor for around $300 that looks good but I haven't played one.

cb56
03-19-2014, 03:59 PM
Has six strings? I assumed OP was looking for a 4 string tenor.

rocko
03-19-2014, 04:13 PM
I have a Blueridge 40T tuned CGDA and I very much love it.

hokelore
03-20-2014, 02:23 AM
I mostly use open tunings on mine. I have a fondness for fiddle cross-tunings down an octave. I started using CGDA but I broke the A all the time. I saved strings by tuning down a whole step (BbFCG) and capoing, and that works, but I really like the wild droney sound I get from the cross-tunings.

notgeorgeformby
03-20-2014, 06:37 AM
Thanks for the replies, folks.

@cb56 That chart is very helpful, thanks.

The Blueridge BR-40T sounds lovely. For those of you who own a tenor guitar, this is the one I'm considering (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/190993857227?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649). It's about the cheapest I can find but don't know anything about the brand at all, but does it look like a good buy to you?

Is this the Ibanez you mean (http://www.ibanez.co.jp/products/u_ag_page14.php?year=2014&cat_id=3&series_id=83&data_id=7&color=CL01), @cb56?

katysax
03-20-2014, 07:38 AM
I tried a tenor guitar for a while tuned like a baritone. I really didn't like it; I didn't feel like I could get the right tension on the strings. It's really meant to be tuned like a banjo.

Patrick Madsen
03-20-2014, 07:48 AM
Thanks for the replies, folks.

@cb56 That chart is very helpful, thanks.

The Blueridge BR-40T sounds lovely. For those of you who own a tenor guitar, this is the one I'm considering (http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/190993857227?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649). It's about the cheapest I can find but don't know anything about the brand at all, but does it look like a good buy to you?

Is this the Ibanez you mean (http://www.ibanez.co.jp/products/u_ag_page14.php?year=2014&cat_id=3&series_id=83&data_id=7&color=CL01), @cb56?


Realize that the guitar will more than likely need a good setup to play as intended. Otherwise it is just an expensive cheese cutter.

cb56
03-20-2014, 11:13 AM
I don't know anything about the Tonewood brand. Yes the Ibanez is the one you linked to. Selling here for $299 USD. It also has a solid spruce top like the Blueridge just a smaller body. The tonewood guitar probably has a laminate top.
Use correct strings (see chart previously posted) and you will have proper tension.

notgeorgeformby
03-20-2014, 09:12 PM
Thanks, cb.
The Ibanez looks like it will only be available in the UK from August. I suppose it gives me time to save up my pocket money.

PhilUSAFRet
03-21-2014, 12:51 AM
A couple on ebay: http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odkw=ukulele&_sop=10&_osacat=619&_from=R40&LH_PrefLoc=1&_trksid=p2045573.m570.l1313&_nkw=harmony+tenor+guitar&_sacat=619

notgeorgeformby
03-21-2014, 01:22 AM
A couple on ebay: http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_odkw=ukulele&_sop=10&_osacat=619&_from=R40&LH_PrefLoc=1&_trksid=p2045573.m570.l1313&_nkw=harmony+tenor+guitar&_sacat=619

Thanks, Phil. :)

PhilUSAFRet
03-21-2014, 10:01 AM
Now ya got me thinking about a short scale tenor guitar tuned gCEA,

seonachan
03-21-2014, 11:04 AM
I just read on the Tenor Guitar Registry that Kala is coming out with a small-bodied, short-scale tenor guitar. No details on when, but it sounds like it will resemble the short scale Regal tenors/Fletcher Tenortones - 21" scale with a body just a bit bigger than a baritone ukulele.

notgeorgeformby
03-21-2014, 12:28 PM
I just read on the Tenor Guitar Registry that Kala is coming out with a small-bodied, short-scale tenor guitar. No details on when, but it sounds like it will resemble the short scale Regal tenors/Fletcher Tenortones - 21" scale with a body just a bit bigger than a baritone ukulele.

That sounds like my dream ticket. I love Kalas.

PhilUSAFRet
03-21-2014, 03:08 PM
Whoo, hooo, Sounds like a good way to go. Now, if they would just make a concert size 8 string taropatch. Somebody, please. The world doesn't need another tenor 8 string uke.

PhilUSAFRet
03-22-2014, 01:22 AM
Whoops, not a "short scale tenor guitar"....here's a previous post on UU re: kala ukes set up to be tuned in 5ths for mandolin players, etc., including a tenor uke. Not exactly a tenor guitar.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J_P7znmhxY0&feature=youtu.be

FiL
03-22-2014, 12:03 PM
I just read on the Tenor Guitar Registry that Kala is coming out with a small-bodied, short-scale tenor guitar. No details on when, but it sounds like it will resemble the short scale Regal tenors/Fletcher Tenortones - 21" scale with a body just a bit bigger than a baritone ukulele.

I saw that posting too, and I'm intrigued! A short-scale tenor has been on my wishlist for a while. I hope this one comes to fruition. I think the tuned-in-fifths ukes were Kala's way of testing the waters. An actual tenor guitar is the next logical step.

I wonder: will this be Kala's first steel-stringed instrument?

- FiL

PhilUSAFRet
03-22-2014, 02:20 PM
I hope so. Oh crap, yet another instrument on my wish list.

notgeorgeformby
03-28-2014, 10:13 AM
Just a head's up to say I took the plunge and bought a Tanglewood (http://www.gear4music.com/Guitar-and-Bass/Tanglewood-Tenor-Guitar-Vintage-Sunburst/LRP) second hand. It came today and it sounds great, really resonant tone with low action and so much volume. Very chuffed.

65294

Wooville
04-23-2014, 04:19 AM
Just received a new Blue Ridge BR-60T tenor guitar. Wow what a BEAUTIFUL guitar and the sound is WOW! I can see I'm going to spend a lot of time on this one. For the last year or so, I've been playing an Ohana baritone more hours than I care to discuss and this seems to be a logical choice for more punch! It felt comfortable from the first chord I struck....I think I'm in Love! <G>

Patrick Madsen
04-23-2014, 05:25 AM
I've been looking for a tenor guitar myself and will be checking out the ones mentioned. In the meantime, I've put a set of Southcoast HML-CM on my Webber baritone. It's the thin metal set that Dirk makes. Dang, it changed that bari into a great sounding metal stringed instrument.

For those who have a tenor or baritone and want that steel string sound, the HML-CMs' are the string to try. I can tune to a Bb on my bari with them and a C on my tenor uke.

notgeorgeformby
04-23-2014, 05:45 AM
Just received a new Blue Ridge BR-60T tenor guitar. Wow what a BEAUTIFUL guitar and the sound is WOW! I can see I'm going to spend a lot of time on this one. For the last year or so, I've been playing an Ohana baritone more hours than I care to discuss and this seems to be a logical choice for more punch! It felt comfortable from the first chord I struck....I think I'm in Love! <G>

Congratulations! I'm looking at a solid top myself at the moment. Tempted by the Aria AF which is a very similar spec to the Blueridge I believe.

staylor
04-30-2014, 05:21 AM
I bought lovely wife a Blueridge BR-40T, in a really nice Golden Gate case built by Saga for that specific guitar, from maurysmusic.com last year. (NFI--just a satisfied customer who got a very good deal.) We tune it DGBE with phosphor bronze strings, so all the uke chord shapes work...but the pitch is two-and-half steps lower than standard uke tuning. The BR-40T is really loud, which makes it fun to thrash on, but you can tame its brash voice with fingerpicking, thin picks and by finding the sweet spot closer to the neck.

The parolor-sized body and thin neck are very comfortable, and setup from Maury's was fine. Lovely wife normally plays a concert uke, so the longer scale (and steel strings) for a tenor guitar are a bit of a challenge. But I started her with a capo on the fifth or sixth fret, and she's backing it down the neck as she adjusts to longer stretches for her familiar uke chords.

I've been playing stringed instruments, left-handed, for more than 40 years and like it well enough that I'd like to own the left-handed version. Our next experiment with it will be an open tuning (maybe DGBD) and a slide. :)

PhilUSAFRet
04-30-2014, 08:49 PM
Just stumbled on this by accident re: new Kala tenor guitar.

http://humblebaritonics.blogspot.com/2014/04/mark-josephs-kala-tenor-guitar.html

notgeorgeformby
04-30-2014, 10:44 PM
Just stumbled on this by accident re: new Kala tenor guitar.

http://humblebaritonics.blogspot.com/2014/04/mark-josephs-kala-tenor-guitar.html

Thanks for this, Phil. Any idea where to buy one?

PhilUSAFRet
05-01-2014, 07:28 AM
Thanks for this, Phil. Any idea where to buy one?

I'd contact Mike at UkeRepublic ASAP http://www.ukerepublic.com/

Not on his website yet, but a Kala dealer and may do a pre-order. He also does great setups and has great customer service.

ichadwick
05-04-2014, 03:04 AM
I've been playing tenor for a couple of years now and have a Goldtone and a Soares resonator:

66514

Foxfish
05-07-2014, 11:11 AM
If you live in the UK then I would recommend the Ozark short scale tenor guitar as a fantastic budget model.
Solid top, 21.5" scale and sweet as a nut in CGDA.

notgeorgeformby
05-08-2014, 01:49 AM
If you live in the UK then I would recommend the Ozark short scale tenor guitar as a fantastic budget model.
Solid top, 21.5" scale and sweet as a nut in CGDA.

I asked about that one at my local outlet. He said he stopped stocking them because of "quality issues".

Foxfish
05-08-2014, 07:00 AM
Hmm interesting!
Mine is only 6 months old but I really hammer it & have used some powerful strings in GDAE.
I now use CGDA which seems to suit the guitar better.
I cant see any issues so far in fact, it is a fantastic instrument in every aspect & generally rated as very good quality.
It has been played on stage & busking too.
I know plenty of guys on the tenor guitar forums who rate the Ozark, not heard a bad word about it before!
Time will tell I guess!
I will be the first guy to report any issues though...

Foxfish
05-08-2014, 10:24 AM
Actually Ozark do sell a more expensive longer scale model with a cut out body, that one has had reputed issues!
Apparently it is not made in the same factory as other Ozark instruments.

MikeC
05-18-2014, 05:55 PM
Hi
Been a member a while, but first post.
I have a Squier Mini Strat, I took the 1 and 6 strings off and then tuned the rest in intervals like a low G uke, leaving the 4 string as A.
Eventually the plan is to make a four string neck like the Soares'y Fourcaster, but to be honest it's fine playing it as is - might benefit from making a new nut with slightly wider string spacing as per uke, but I haven't got around to it.
I can switch between Tenor uke and the Strat with no problems.
If you're in the US you can get a new mini Strat for under $100.... I've read negative comments on them but the one I have is really good for the price, - tuners are very stiff, but once it's in tune it stays in tune for ages, even with the original skinny strings.
Tone is very good for such a cheap instrument.

Mike
New Zealand

SteveZ
05-22-2014, 11:27 AM
Put GDAE on my Blueridge 40T and really love it. Got a couple sets of strings (45w 035w 023w 013) being custom packaged for Breedlove tenors and they sound sweet.

recorder&ukule-player,
06-12-2014, 05:36 PM
Well I play a regular guitar but I made the last two strings Still so to speak ..I intend to buy a regular tenor guitar in the future but now I'm too busy playing and buying ukes (I play the Baritone as well )

Walden
06-12-2014, 08:47 PM
I play a Gold Tone tenor guitar... their budget model. I really like it. It is tuned to CGDA, just like the American tenor banjo, and I just use a standard tenor guitar string set.

PhilUSAFRet
07-17-2014, 04:13 AM
Uke players moving into a Tenor Guitar (gCEA one of the optional tunings or any other tuning) may enjoy using these strings:

http://www.elixirstrings.com/products/product_acoustic.html

ichadwick
07-26-2014, 04:55 AM
Anyone seen or tried the new Kala tenor guitar?

Jim Yates
10-03-2014, 11:56 AM
71494I have an old yard sale tenor guitar that is strung with nylon strings and tuned DGBE, making it a baritone uke.

hammer40
12-08-2014, 03:22 AM
You can add me to the list. I just received an Ibanez AVT1. It's great to be able to stay with 4 strings, but move to a new sound and instrument.

SteveZ
12-08-2014, 04:42 AM
You can add me to the list. I just received an Ibanez AVT1. It's great to be able to stay with 4 strings, but move to a new sound and instrument.

Welcome to the TG community. There's just something haunting about the sound of a good, steel-stringed guitar.

The AVT1 and the Blueridge BR-40T seem to be the top two TGs in the under-$500 price range. I love my 40T and actually have tried to match the sound as close as possible on a nylon-stringed ukulele, mainly for the convenience of traveling with a smaller-sized case. The closest I've come is with a Pono Pro Classic tenor ukulele tuned CGDA.

hammer40
12-08-2014, 05:04 AM
Welcome to the TG community. There's just something haunting about the sound of a good, steel-stringed guitar.

The AVT1 and the Blueridge BR-40T seem to be the top two TGs in the under-$500 price range. I love my 40T and actually have tried to match the sound as close as possible on a nylon-stringed ukulele, mainly for the convenience of traveling with a smaller-sized case. The closest I've come is with a Pono Pro Classic tenor ukulele tuned CGDA.

I'm curious to see how the Kala does as well. Although, it looks identical to the Ozark, I wonder if they make it for Kala?

Interesting thought, what strings do you use to tune your Pono to CDGA? How is the tension?

SteveZ
12-08-2014, 05:22 AM
I'm curious to see how the Kala does as well. Although, it looks identical to the Ozark, I wonder if they make it for Kala?

Interesting thought, what strings do you use to tune your Pono to CDGA? How is the tension?

I use Aquila's 31U string set, marketed as CGDA for concert ukes (Elderly has them). Have been using the 31U set for a long time on soprano-to-tenor, including on a concert banjolele, and am pleased with the results. The 31U loads up very well on the tenors I have (the Pono and a Lanikai SMP) with no tension strain. The Pono performs like a "mini-TG" and the Lanikai (when amped) hangs in there well.

Wicked
12-08-2014, 05:57 AM
I have been thinking of picking up a tenor guitar. I purchased a Gretsch "guitar ukulele" to fill in the gap, so to speak, between my guitar and ukulele - but although I enjoy it, it hasn't really hit the sweet spot for me. Perhaps a TG is what will do it.

The ibanez seems nice, but the styling is a bit too retro for me. The Blueridge is more likely for me, but I would like to see the Kala in the wild before I decide.

SteveZ
12-08-2014, 06:10 AM
I have been thinking of picking up a tenor guitar. I purchased a Gretsch "guitar ukulele" to fill in the gap, so to speak, between my guitar and ukulele - but although I enjoy it, it hasn't really hit the sweet spot for me. Perhaps a TG is what will do it.

The ibanez seems nice, but the styling is a bit too retro for me. The Blueridge is more likely for me, but I would like to see the Kala in the wild before I decide.

For the money, the Kala, Ibanez and Blueridge are all good. I got my Blueridge on a trade for a mandolin and couldn't be happier. I do prefer a pick guard (the Blueridge comes with one) and would probably put one on a Kala or Ibanez if I ever got one of those. Considering the TG market, they do seem to have great trade value.

hammer40
12-08-2014, 06:32 AM
I have been thinking of picking up a tenor guitar. I purchased a Gretsch "guitar ukulele" to fill in the gap, so to speak, between my guitar and ukulele - but although I enjoy it, it hasn't really hit the sweet spot for me. Perhaps a TG is what will do it.

The ibanez seems nice, but the styling is a bit too retro for me. The Blueridge is more likely for me, but I would like to see the Kala in the wild before I decide.

Don't forget the new Pono, to bad it's expensive though. I know they are calling it a baritone, but it's a tenor guitar based on scale length anyway.

cb56
12-08-2014, 09:02 AM
I love my Blueridge BR-40T. It tune it DGBE. IMO If you are going for DGBE tuning the Blueridge is the way to go because it's larger body than the Ibanez or Kala. Now for regular tenor CGDA tuning I'd probably go for the smaller instrument.

SteveZ
12-08-2014, 09:34 AM
Never tried DGBE on the 40T. GDAE was tough, as the E snapped a couple times. CGDA has worked well for me, and matching against the tenor banjo also tuned CGDA makes for an interesting exchange during playing sessions.

hammer40
12-08-2014, 12:21 PM
I love my Blueridge BR-40T. It tune it DGBE. IMO If you are going for DGBE tuning the Blueridge is the way to go because it's larger body than the Ibanez or Kala. Now for regular tenor CGDA tuning I'd probably go for the smaller instrument.

Not sure how much of a difference it makes, but the Blueridge is a 1.5 inches wider at the bout but 1.5 shorter in length. If the over all area is roughly the same, I wonder what difference that makes to the sound of the instrument? I wish I could play them together to compare them.

theshaggyfreak
12-08-2014, 02:29 PM
I got one of the Kala Tenor Guitars a few weeks ago. For the money, it's got a really good sound and it's a joy to play tuned CGDA with it's shorter scale.

Wicked
12-09-2014, 03:44 AM
Don't forget the new Pono, to bad it's expensive though. I know they are calling it a baritone, but it's a tenor guitar based on scale length anyway.

Hey, the Pono tenors look slick... but I really want steel strings.

SteveZ
12-09-2014, 04:20 AM
Hey, the Pono tenors look slick... but I really want steel strings.

I tuned my nylon-stringed Pono Pro Classic tenor uke to CGDA and, when compared to the Pono TG online demo, the sound difference is noticeable, but not that great. That just goes to show how well the Pro Classic line is made more than anything else, as the Pono TG really is a neat instrument. There definitely is a night-and-day difference in the sound from steel and nylon strings.

Having a nylon-stringed mini-TG is convenient, and any tenor uke strung with Aquila 31U Nyguts (CGDA set) will give you that. I've got two standard tenor ukes (the Pono and a Lanikai SMP A/E) strung CGDA and they sound great. Yesterday I got a Oscar Schmidt 8-string tenor uke, restrung it with two 31U sets and the OS is surprisingly good. So, there are quick-and-easy nylon string alternatives available.

Will be spending part of today alternating between the OS and the Blueridge just to appreciate the differences.

Wicked
01-17-2015, 11:34 AM
I had the opportunity to try out the Kala TG at a shop today. I think I might go ahead and get one.

hammer40
01-17-2015, 11:59 AM
I had the opportunity to try out the Kala TG at a shop today. I think I might go ahead and get one.

Go for it, you won't be sorry. I'm loving my Ibanez!

Photojosh
01-17-2015, 12:16 PM
I had the opportunity to try out the Kala TG at a shop today. I think I might go ahead and get one.

Quite by coincidence, I just got to strum the Kala TG at a local store today. Sounded very nice. Smaller than my other acoustic TG (a lark in the morning model). But quite nice nonetheless. No idea how they had it tuned. I'm not as interested for myself because I have little interest in trying to learn chords for something tuned in 5ths. I have a hard enough time with 4ths!

I also have an electric les paul style Soares'y TG. Would like to pick up a resonator someday, Goldtone and Republic both seem to offer them. Have been sorely tempted by the Ibanez TG as well. Seems well reviewed and the parlor style body looks neat.

OregonJim
01-17-2015, 12:24 PM
Would like to pick up a resonator someday, Goldtone and Republic both seem to offer them.

I tried out Gold Tone's resonator and banjo ukes yesterday. Build quality was quite nice, tone was excellent for both. Neither was quite as loud as I was expecting, though loud enough. Store price was just over $400 on each. I might have walked home with one, but I couldn't choose... :)

hammer40
01-17-2015, 09:27 PM
Quite by coincidence, I just got to strum the Kala TG at a local store today. Sounded very nice. Smaller than my other acoustic TG (a lark in the morning model). But quite nice nonetheless. No idea how they had it tuned. I'm not as interested for myself because I have little interest in trying to learn chords for something tuned in 5ths. I have a hard enough time with 4ths!

Well, just tune it DGBE then and your all set, same shapes that you already know. I didn't keep the 5ths tuning on mine.