Review of the Clearwater Roundback Electro Concert Ukulele

kaizersoza

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I needed a uke for club practice and gigging with our band, it had to have a pick up, be acoustic and robust enough to take the knocks and spillage (alcohol) of gigging, it also had to be relatively cheap (under £100) I went onto evil bay and saw the Clearwater Round back Electro Ukulele, it was nicely priced at £89.99 in The Really Useful Music Company online shop so I decided to have a gamble.

The Uke came with free delivery and arrived in 2 days, it comes with a solid sitka spruce top and a roundback in plastic (I think), it has a soundboard transducer type pick up which is not ideal but for the price it does the job and sounds really nice through my amp although there is a slight bit of feedback which i expected due to the pick up, it is complete with Aquila strings and also has bone nut and saddle, the fingerboard is rosewood as is the bridge.

You do get a lot of uke for your money here and it is very loud acoustically with a nice sustain, the intonation is really quite good and better than some of my more expensive ukes to be honest, this uke is going to be my new beater uke, my take everywhere uke, it will save my fluke some hardship and also my Kala Flamed Maple Concert, versatility is important to me and this ukulele really ticks all my boxes.

The finish is sweet n glossy and the spruce top and white binding perfectly compliments the black back it has a bit of bling with an abalone purfling around the sound hole and the Clearwater logo on the headstock is also abalone,there is some nice black and white purfling around the edge of the soundboard, no overkill there, it comes with geared tuners which do the job, now don't get me wrong this is no Mainland and you get what you pay for, but for a beater gigging uke it is really good value for money.

So to sum the uke up if you are looking for a cheap uke that will literally bang out a song when you are playing with others, that you are not afraid to get the odd ding or drop of whiskey on, that will put up with the rigours of gigging and throwing into the back of a van, give one of these babies a try
 

drneil

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Agree with you. This is a much underrated uke and its interesting that Ohana sell virtually the same uke for £30 more. It's nice and loud, the plastic back makes me feel it could take a blow or two at club night. The pickup doesn't require a battery so feedback effects can be achieved if you are not careful. Certainly a beater uke and as a result of acquiring the Clearwater I sold my Kala KA-CE.

Neil
 

barefootgypsy

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I saw and played a Clearwater soprano electro uke the other week and was highly impressed with it. I only played it a little in the shop and I'm not used to electros, so I'm not in a position to compare it with others, but as a uke it was very attractive and well-built, and it sounded very nice. I didn't buy it, and someone else did, very quickly... so I missed the chance. On the basis of this review and drneil's comment, and other reviews on amazon I'm biting the bullet and ordering this one..... exciting! I'll let you know how it goes! Thanks for sharing your thoughts, kaizersoza! I'm hoping it'll fit the bill as a beater uke as well.
 
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barefootgypsy

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el On the basis of this review and drneil's comment, and other reviews on amazon I'm biting the bullet and ordering this one..... exciting!
And...... it's ordered, and on its way! I hope it comes quickly! :) Pics will follow, I promise....
 

kaizersoza

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UPDATE, I have owned this uke for well over a year now and to be honest it has been a great work horse, it has accompanied me on camping trips, hikes, beer fuelled barbeques and parties, jams with my better half, club nights and also more beer fuelled gigs and even more beer fuelled parties, and apart from some light scratches where I used a strap, it is still in really good shape, last week I took it down the club with the intention of selling it to one of the members, he played it for the duration of the evening but decided not to buy it, I was chuffed, so I took it back home, then another member wanted to buy it and it looks like we will be parting company very soon, it will be a sad farewell, tough uke, great sound for the money, fond memories


ukoholix5.jpg
 

barefootgypsy

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UPDATE, I have owned this uke for well over a year now and to be honest it has been a great work horse, it has accompanied me on camping trips, hikes, beer fuelled barbeques and parties, jams with my better half, club nights and also more beer fuelled gigs and even more beer fuelled parties, and apart from some light scratches where I used a strap, it is still in really good shape, last week I took it down the club with the intention of selling it to one of the members, he played it for the duration of the evening but decided not to buy it, I was chuffed, so I took it back home, then another member wanted to buy it and it looks like we will be parting company very soon, it will be a sad farewell, tough uke, great sound for the money, fond memories
Thanks for this update and for the picture, I love the way you personalised it! But I have to ask - if you've been so pleased with it, why are you selling it?
 

kaizersoza

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I may not sell it, but I have 14 and I need to trim down, this uke is the one that gotta go, but like I said I may end up just keeping it, that is not mine, mine don't have any designs on it, this belongs to a member of my band
 

barefootgypsy

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I may not sell it, but I have 14 and I need to trim down, this uke is the one that gotta go, but like I said I may end up just keeping it, that is not mine, mine don't have any designs on it, this belongs to a member of my band
Thanks Kaizersoza, I get it! As for mine - it's on the van and out for delivery! Ooooooh...... new uke day.....:D
 

barefootgypsy

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hope you enjoy your new uke Lesley

Richard
It has arrived! Am still in exploratory mode at present..... but first impressions are, on the whole I'm quite happy with it! I'll be doing a NUD post a bit later! And I was very pleased to have your views on this uke, Richard, thank you! Meanwhile - did you change the Aquilas for different strings at all?
 

kaizersoza

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no I didn't change the strings, I stuck with the Aquilas, they have lasted ages, but make sure you check out the pick up because my first one wasn't working, but the service from RUMC was fantastic, they picked it up and sent me a new one before the broken one was even returned, really good service