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Thread: String Review - Martin Ukulele Clear Fluorocarbon Soprano/Concert

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    Slovenia
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    11

    Default String Review - Martin Ukulele Clear Fluorocarbon Soprano/Concert

    Ok, so I haven't been playing Ukulele for very long and I have a cheapo ply (I think) Uke (Golden Ton). However, I did want to change the strings from the no-name strings that were on it when I bought it. I figured this might be a good way to get an idea of what the Uke can sound like.

    Since I live in Slovenia, it is kinda hard to find uke strings (and they can be expensive... example, in the US, I buy guitar strings for $3.95... in Slovenia, the same string is the equivalent of $10!!!!), so I had a family member send me some over from the US. I didn't know which brand to get and didn't want to bother to have him look for a specific brand so I just told him to get me Uke strings for a Soprano C tuning with a high g.

    What I got was a package of Martin Clear Fluorocarbon Soprano/Concert M600 Strings in C tuning, gauge .0191 - .0261 (inch). First thing I noticed when I took them out of the packaging was that they were thinner than the ones currently on my Uke.

    So after reviewing UU I restrung the Uke. I stretched the strings and let them settle a bit. I picked up the Uke to play and noticed the sound was a bit punchier and the tone a bit more bright. The volume was similar. The biggest difference was in the feel of the strings. Because the strings were thinner, I was able to finger chords a bit easier and this allowed all the strings to really ring out. This I like! I was noticing with the old strings that I was having a little trouble with some chords.

    I really can't compare these strings to any other brands, but from my personal opinion (based on my guitar playing appreciation of tone), I think the strings sound fine... the biggest point for me is the ease of playing thinner strings.

    So... if you are a Soprano player who is frustrated with the small neck and narrow fret spacing, consider a thinner gauge of strings and this might be helpful.

    I will try other strings eventually, but since I have another new pack of Martins, this will be my string on this Uke for now!

    Andy
    Last edited by SLOuker; 02-24-2009 at 12:28 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    El Paso, TX
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    sorry about the thread resurrection, but i was quite surprised to see that no one replied to this post. i also have martin fluouro-carbon strings on my cheapie soprano and i agree with everything that slouker said. these are actually really good strings. they have a good "wet" feel to them and play really well. i don't know what brand i had on my soprano before, but theye were the wrong gauge and made my soprano sound like crap. after i bought my tenor, i would hardly play my soprano. when i decided to get the saddle fixed on my soprano, i figured it was time to "upgrade" my strings and the place i took my uke to recommended these for soprano ukes. i actually think i play my soprano more than my tenor now because of the difference in the sound. i love my tenor and play it when i'm out playing with others or really practicing, but because of how playable these strings are, anytime i'm just noodling or doing some quick playing/practicing, i grab for my soprano now.

    like slouker said, at first, the strings were punchy, but now they've stretched more, they really sound good.
    Kani ke ‘ō, he ihona pali
    Jason - the 'ukulele playing bassoonist punk!!

    Oscar Schmidt OU-4 Tenor 四弦 shigen
    Lanikai LU-8 Tenor 八弦 hagen
    EleUke Cutaway Jazz Concert 電弦 dengen
    1968ish Beltone Soprano 旧弦 kyuugen
    1950ish Dixie Banjo Uke 芋弦 imogen
    Makala Dolphin Red burst 赤弦 akagen --my son's uke

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Cruz, Ca.
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    Good job on the review and the followup.
    I picked up some Martins when I first started playing uke but have not tried them yet.
    Now I'm encouraged.
    Thanks again.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Omaha, Nebraska
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    How would the Martin's sound on a Flea soprano? The stock strings don't do much for me and the black strings on black fret board with black frets has me stumbling a bit

    Makala Dolphin (Yellow Burst) soprano
    Fluke Flea Tiki King soprano
    Fluke Concert 'Natural Finish', with pickup
    Sprucehouse SO soprano
    Ohana PK25g Solid Mahogany Pineapple Soprano
    --- All held up with a Uke Leash (thanks Lori!)

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Tarpon Springs, FL
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    Quote Originally Posted by J_Tay81 View Post
    How would the Martin's sound on a Flea soprano? The stock strings don't do much for me and the black strings on black fret board with black frets has me stumbling a bit
    I liked them on my Flea concert.

    - Steve

  6. #6
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    Sep 2009
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    UK
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    I think Martin flouros are very much underrated, but it does depend on the Uke.

    I have tried them on various ukes, Flea included, but wasnt happy. I put them on my Mainland Concert Mahogany and WOW - they are my string of choice for that particular uke.

    They hold tuning brilliantly, are nice on the fingers, great volume, but most of all they give a beautiful sweet chiming tone to the Uke that I just didnt get with the supplied Aquilas. I love Mainlands, but I think Aquilas are just wrong on them.
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    Ukes include (!) Kanile'a K1 Tenor, Tinguitar custom solid tenor, Fluke, Flea, Tinguitar Reclaimed Mahogany soprano, KM Ukuleles Dreadnought Concert, Brüko walnut soprano

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
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    Newfoundland, Canada
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    I like the Martin clear fluorocarbons...I tried a bunch of strings on a particular uke including Worth clear and brown, aquila, Ko'olau alohi but the martins stayed on.

  8. #8
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    Nov 2010
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    DFW, TX, USA
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    Quote Originally Posted by J_Tay81 View Post
    How would the Martin's sound on a Flea soprano? The stock strings don't do much for me and the black strings on black fret board with black frets has me stumbling a bit
    I suspect I'd like them better than the Aquillas a lot of people seem to be putting on the Flukes/Fleas. I have a set of the Martins that were the only Uke strings I could get locally when I broke one of the Aquila's on my little pocket uke. There, at least, the string is much, much nicer than the original (I'm going to put the rest of the set on when things settle down a bit around here).

    Just my opinion but I think Aquila's just don't work well on short scales and on ukes that are already pretty bright, and the Fluke and Flea are very bright at least to my ears.

    Now, on my LU-21C the Aquilas are great, though even there the sustain dies pretty quickly as you fret up the neck around the tenth fret or so.

    John
    I'm not entirely convinced that it is possible to polish a turd. However, if one were to accomplish that feat one would still have a turd, and one all the more noticeable for being shiny.

    Check out my ukulele-themed "stuff" at http://www.cafepress.com/fivebyfiveukulele - proceeds go to a good cause...UAS treatment!

  9. #9
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    Nov 2010
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    Omaha, Nebraska
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    I tossed my local music store $5 and some change and got the martin M600 fluorocarbons. I put them on my Flea last night, switching from the stock Hilos (those just sounded so thin and quiet to me). The Martins are still settling into their new homes on my fretboard, but already, they sound more full than the Hilos. I'd say they even sound a might bit louder too. Finger-feel while playing is much better to me. And the clear strings stand out better on the black plastic fretboard making it easier to visualize where your finger tips need to land. They still need to stretch out some more, as I have to fine-tune after every song or so, but I think if you have a Fluke Flea then Martin M600's are a good investment. And, heck they're cheap!

    Happy strumming!

    Makala Dolphin (Yellow Burst) soprano
    Fluke Flea Tiki King soprano
    Fluke Concert 'Natural Finish', with pickup
    Sprucehouse SO soprano
    Ohana PK25g Solid Mahogany Pineapple Soprano
    --- All held up with a Uke Leash (thanks Lori!)

  10. #10
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    Oct 2010
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    Oakland, CA
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    Quote Originally Posted by pauljmuk View Post
    I love Mainlands, but I think Aquilas are just wrong on them.
    I totally agree Paul! I had a Mainland Mango Concert and the Worth Clears sounded so much better on it that the Aquilas. The Mainlands have a lovely tone to them that the Aquilas turn into a much harsher sound. On the other hand I like the Aquilas on my Kala Acacia Tenor; each uke is different. I haven't tried the Martin Flouros on my own ukes but the ones I've seen seemed a lot like the Worth Clears.

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