All mahogany OR Cedar top Mahogany body tenor

nublele

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I posted a similar topic about cedar top and which back should i choose.
Considering all prices and stuff it all came down to these two.

If you were to choose which one will you get? The ALL SOLID Mahogany or Cedar/mahogany tenor
Any opinions would be very much appreciated

Another question would be is rosewood significantly heavier than the mahogany? Its my other choice but price is getting in my way, but i wouldn't disregard this completely

Cedar better on satin finish? Or gloss. Thanks!
Trying out isn't an option since im only buying online to our local luthiers
 
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merlin666

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It depends on what you want to accomplish. Traditionally ukes are made of hardwood only, so if you put a soft wood top on it may deviate from traditional ukulele design and become more like other stringed instrument that traditionally has softwood top, like a guitar.

As for rosewood, it has higher density than mahogany and my comparable guitars feel a lot heavier than their mahogany counterparts. There are also international CITES restrictions which can complicate moving instruments that contain Rosewood across international borders.
 

about2

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Hmmm, I agree with merlin666. It's a matter of personal choice. I have a solid mahogany baritone and a solid cedar/mahogany tenor. My preference is the cedar top - but I know others who are strictly mahogany players. I think the cedar lends itself more to my style of playing . . . but I love the rich tone of the mahogany bari. Its hard to make generalizations because there are so many different factors that make a uke sing and tone wood is just one of many components.
 

man0a

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It depends on what you want to accomplish. Traditionally ukes are made of hardwood only, so if you put a soft wood top on it may deviate from traditional ukulele design and become more like other stringed instrument that traditionally has softwood top, like a guitar.

As for rosewood, it has higher density than mahogany and my comparable guitars feel a lot heavier than their mahogany counterparts. There are also international CITES restrictions which can complicate moving instruments that contain Rosewood across international borders.

The CITES restrictions on musical instruments ended in 2019. https://blog.taylorguitars.com/rosewood-musical-instruments-exempted-from-requiring-cites-permits
 

Kenn2018

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If there are sound samples of the ukes you are considering, use a pair of headphones/earbuds and listen to them closely. Strums, fingerstyle and it should help you decide.

If you don't have sound samples, you'll have to think in generalities.

I have solid hog tenors that I like very much. Martin 1T IZ sounds very different than the Takumi TT-3M. Both are loud & resonant with the Takumi a littler crisper and the Martin more boomy.

I think the cedar gives the uke a little more warmth. Might increase the projection.

Finishes are pretty subjective. I could hear the difference between a Pono MGT Mango Tenor and a Pono MGTD & PC high gloss finishes. The satin seemed more open. But that's my opinion.

Rosewood is heavier than mahogany. But having a cedar top is lighter than a mahogany one, so it pretty much balances out.

All of these options can be excellent. If you are comparing different models from the same maker, then it's pretty clear. If you're comparing different maker's instruments, then it's down more to the build.

I honestly think that unless you have all three in your hands to compare, you won't realize the subtle differences in sound between the materials.

It boils down to which will make you happier?
 

merlin666

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The catch with uke comparisons is often that it's just different ukes and we can't really know if differences are just between the individual ukes, or if those individual ukes are actually representative of a whole group of ukes with different qualities. For example I had the good fortune to visit the KoAloha factory and showroom three times and have used this time to play the ukes they have for sale there. I am usually amazed how consistent the actual KoAloha ukes were, like when I played 10 concerts they all played and sounded very similar, and if I had to pick one to buy it would likely be based on the appearance of the wood. On the other hand, the acacia Opios had much bigger variation with maybe one or two out of 10 quite similar to the KoAloha but the others more different. And even with Kamakas one uke can be quite different from the next. We have to be extremely cautious with generalizations applied to brands or materials as more often than not an individual uke may not even be the best example of its group.
 

ripock

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since you asked, I would go for the one with nicer grain.
 

rustydusty

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I would go for the cedar top, as that's what I have on my favorite acoustic guitar, and the sound is beautiful. (Yairi-Alverez custom build). I also like the contrast in wood colors. One of my baritone ukes is all mahogany and is kinda plain looking. My baritone ukulele of choice has a spruce top and sounds so much better than the mahogany one...