Playability . Easy Playing , Easy Strumming Ukuleles ?

kaimuki

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Trying out a KoAloha concert the other day , I found it much easier strumming than other brands .
( I'm talking production not custom )
I hardly had to strum at all to get a loud response .
And what a beautiful sounding response !
I have an Ohana CK-35 set-up by Mim ; the ease of play of the KoAloha is on another level .

What other production , non-custom brands / models , concert size , are known for their easy playability ?

Matt Stead points out the easy playability of this custom Ko'olau :

 
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badhabits

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I am a crappy strummer, but same ukes, same conclusion here. Koalohas are known to be louder, anyway.
 

kaimuki

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I am a crappy strummer, but same ukes, same conclusion here. Koalohas are known to be louder, anyway.
Actually , too loud for me .
I wonder how it would play /sound with clear nylons .?
 

kaimuki

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Any Kiwayas that I have played have had nice comfortable low action and have been easy to play
Yes ; but I'm not sure the trade winds blow and the palm trees sway with each strum like the KoAloha . :)
 

rhiggie

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Gotta say, I agree about KoAloha, easy to play and very consistent voices (and volume). I have a few, and recently I discovered Pop's KoAloha, founder of KoAloha, who retired is now building his own line of handmade ukes under the brand name UkeSA. I got his little soprano WOW, because I love my Pineapple KoAloha which is really loud. And let me say it as much as my Pineapple KoAloha is louder than my other sopranos, the WOW is that much louder than my Pineapple! And not just louder but so clean. I agree with his name for this uke! Good luck in your search!
 

badhabits

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Would one (that has played both) conclude that Rebels are comparable to Koalohas? In terms of playability? Volume?
 

kaimuki

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Gotta say, I agree about KoAloha, easy to play and very consistent voices (and volume). I have a few, and recently I discovered Pop's KoAloha, founder of KoAloha, who retired is now building his own line of handmade ukes under the brand name UkeSA. I got his little soprano WOW, because I love my Pineapple KoAloha which is really loud. And let me say it as much as my Pineapple KoAloha is louder than my other sopranos, the WOW is that much louder than my Pineapple! And not just louder but so clean. I agree with his name for this uke! Good luck in your search!
https://ukesahawaii.com/product-category/ukes/

https://ukulelepuapua.com/collections/popscustoms
 

kaimuki

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Would one (that has played both) conclude that Rebels are comparable to Koalohas? In terms of playability? Volume?
I strummed the Rebel concert (double cream)? next to the KoAloha .
I was concentrating on listening to the Mango tone wood .
But don't think it was as loud or easy playing ; but not that far behind .
The sound of the KoAloha melted me away .
I wasn't moved by The Rebel's Mango .
 

richntacoma

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My 1920s Weymann is pure production model, and only a few dollars when made..Plays like butter. :)
 

Kenn2018

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All things being equal: Scale Length; Same Strings; Similar Setups (Level & Dressed Frets, Proper Neck Relief, String Height)—I still can't answer your question. I only play tenors.

A brand's playability in one scale, may or may not translate equally to a different scale.

Plus, build changes may affect it as well. Does the 2020 revised Ko'Aloha Concert play the same as say, a 2017? ( I think they changed the concert to the TruR bracing at the same time as the tenor. Don't know if they changed the neck shape and number of frets to the body as well.)

I do have two concerts: A Mahogany Fred Shields Backpacker. It is easy to play, but it is a custom build. So, N/A. And a Mr.Mai MM80 from the factory, that is OK, but nothing special regarding playability.

It's an interesting question.
 

man0a

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Yes, most people do consider Koaloha to be the loudest of the Hawaiian brands. They claim that their "mono brace" has something to do with that, but I think the lightness of their woods is more important. Kanilea is also pretty loud and they also make some claims about their bracing system. Kamaka uses a more traditional bracing and some people praise their sound for being sweeter and less harsh than the other 2.
 

kaimuki

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From Ukulele Labs website :

"KoAloha Ukuleles are known for their bright, vibrant sound. They are great instruments for beginners and strummers."
 

JJFN

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Trying out a KoAloha concert the other day , I found it much easier strumming than other brands .
( I'm talking production not custom )
I hardly had to strum at all to get a loud response .
And what a beautiful sounding response !
I have an Ohana CK-35 set-up by Mim ; the ease of play of the KoAloha is on another level .

What other production , non-custom brands / models , concert size , are known for their easy playability ?

Matt Stead points out the easy playability of this custom Ko'olau :

That's funny kaimuki. I've had 2 KoAloha's, and they and I were not compatible. Different strokes etc.
 

bbkobabe

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Virtually anything from the Magic Fluke Company will have near perfect action and intonation right from the factory in Massachusetts.

Scooter

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I agree with scooter... my Fluke is the easiest to play. The plastic frets are easy on the finger tips. Sounds loud even when played softly... sounds crappy if played aggressively, though.

If my tips are feeling abused, it's what I reach for... and they are currently "shedding" right now so I've been reaching for it frequently. And it just stands there patiently and waits for me!
 

Jim in Oregon

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In my limited experience, I'd go along with the KoAloha tenor I had briefly for easiest playability. Unfortunately, I had to send it back because of intonation problems.

Of the 5 ukes I've kept, my Breedlove myrtlewood tenor is hands down the easiest to strum, finger pick or intermix. It beats my Martin T1K by more than a little.

I know Breedlove doesn't produce a ton of ukes, but I'm always surprised that they don't get more buzz for shear value.

Jim