Kiwaya standard vs thinline sopranos

Ukecaster

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Never had a chance to do a side by side comparison of a Kiwaya standard soprano with their thinline, until today. These 2 are a Kiwaya KS-1 full size soprano, and a Famous FS-0 thinline soprano. The KS-1 is a more standard size soprano, with max body depth at 2.45". The FS-0 is thinner, at only 1.56" deep. Both have 13.75" scale length. Both have Worth Brown strings. To me, the full size KS-1 is a fuller/woodier/richer sound. The Famous thinline has a faster attack/bark, a more focused sound which really vibrates into your body and projects when played. Volume is similar, both pretty loud, but based on the body depth, the Famous thinline is a total cannon. Both great ukes for well under $200.00 each, used. Neck specs very similar, both with 36.7mm nut and 30.2 string spread at nut, very roomy. The FS-0 has been my ultimate travel uke, fits so easily in any suitcase, which really annoys my wife, when I say "Oh, look what's in my suitcase!" when arriving somewhere 😁. I played them both on this video, opinions welcome.

 
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man0a

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I've never heard of the FS-0. Where did you get it from?
I do have a KS-5 and a FLS-1 that I really like.
 

EDW

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I agree that the KS1 sounds a little richer and warmer. The KS-0 sounds quite good and has nice clarity and note separation.

Those laminate Kiwayas (KS-1, KS-5) are terrific instruments. I always think that they sound better than many solid instruments you find out there. I have let a couple pass though my hands. I'll have to keep an eye out for any showing up in the marketplace
 

Dohle

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Kiwaya has a thinline model, wut???
 

hendulele

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I have an FS-1 with Worth Browns (same as KS-1, just a different label) and love it. They’re such great players and punch well above their price point.
 

man0a

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I have an FS-1 with Worth Browns (same as KS-1, just a different label) and love it. They’re such great players and punch well above their price point.
I'm curious, what price point did you pay? They seem to be going for around US$300 new right now and while they are worth that price, I don't think they compare well to $600 instruments (like Opio or Ken Timms).
 

Ziret

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That was a god comparison, thanks. They both sound good, but the KS-1 sounds really good. It’s definitely worthy of its family lineage
 

rafter

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The KS-1 sounds great, but I'm surprised at how good the Famous sounds given its slim size.
 

Bill Sheehan

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Thank you, John! Very nice demo video! Just out of curiosity, were you tuned down a half-step?
 

hendulele

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I'm curious, what price point did you pay? They seem to be going for around US$300 new right now and while they are worth that price, I don't think they compare well to $600 instruments (like Opio or Ken Timms).
I bought mine used for $160. It wasn’t a steal, there are a few dings, but the seller and I were happy with the price, and it was a great deal. They pop up on eBay and the UU marketplace every now and then.
 

Ziret

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Here's another Kiwaya, nice, but too pricey IMO, for a laminate.

Wow, you could get a used proper KTS for much less. My 6 was $450 plus shipping, in new condition, and from the estate of Travis Harrelson. Probably would be somewhat more since shipping and COVID issues, but not that much more.