I knew this was coming but I was a bit surprised they didn't send you one of the Kanile'a Manako models, the newer SUS exclusive.
Just a quick comment on the price. There's one cheaper Hawaiian-made model which is the Oha model with a koa soundboard and mahogany back and sides. I believe Kanile'a actually chose mahogany for the Oha models because they liked it so much on the SUS models. I think the Oha models are about a hundred or two cheaper than the SUS but they use cheaper woods used for them, walnut fingerboard and bridge, no gloss finish. Still excellent ukes no doubt. I'd be all over these SUS models if I didn't have a K1 already. The Manako models I mentioned previously, while looking really nice, are just too expensive for me.
Sounds great! I noticed that you rated both your older koa K1T and this newer SUS K1as overall 9.3. I listened to both reviews back to back, and found the cedar top SUS K1 warmer and fuller sounding. I guess thats the nature of a cedar top. If you had to choose only one of them to keep, I bet it would be the koa.
It will 'probably' never happen. I use the quotes for a reason.
I say that as there is always the possibility that something better comes along.. but honestly - as I score in 0.5 increments if it has a 9 or a 9.5 on sound they will largely be as good as each other to most ears.
It's why I don't just give one score and allow other elements to adjust the final score.
For any other you see with a 9.5 I think this is 'as good' - could be better for some ears, could be worse, but it's in that ballpark.
I'm guessing it's this one: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cupressus_nootkatensis
But then again, who knows. These common names for different woods can mean just about anything. Even mahogany is a bit controversial with the genuine and true mahogany labels. At the end of the day, I'm not too fussed about it.
In other knews, I ordered the concert version of this model. Southern Ukulele Store had a Kanile'a sale on (they still do actually) so that was that. I just can't help myself, can I...
That's Alaskan yellow cedar which looks quite different. I'm wondering if this is a true cedar at all, like Port Orford cedar which is a cypress. There's a super expensive custom Kanile'a super tenor over at HMS also with Alaskan rainbow cedar. Looks and sounds stunning.