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Thread: Koaloha vs Ohio weight

  1. #1
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    Question Koaloha vs Ohio weight

    Does anybody know if Koaloha & Opios are generally built in the same light style?

    Asking because I am really seeking a super light uke. I have a chance to play an Opio in a store tomorrow. Id like to know if I can presume that a similar koaloha would weigh about the same.
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  2. #2
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    They're built on the same plans so should be about the same weight if you're comparing apples and apples (or Koa and Acacia). I couldn't tell any difference except visibly playing similar tenors back-to-back at the factory last year.

  3. #3
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    I played two new concert KoAloha ukuleles earlier this week - the acacia Opio and the koa KCM-00. I don't remember any significant difference in their weights. I went prepared to buy the Opio, but came home with the KCM-00. :-) It's a dream ukulele. Gorgeous in every way, and the lightest weighing uke I have ever held.
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  4. #4
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    I was on the factory tour last November and after had a chance to try out many of their ukes in the showroom. I did not notice and substantial differences in weight, but was amazed how nice and similar they all sounded regardless of the material or country of manufacture. Only the larger Sunday Surprise models seemed a bit heavier than regular tenors. The return on the higher cost of a Koa KoAloha seemed to be very small.

  5. #5
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    Cannot speak to weight but sounds like you would consider the Koaloha (non-Opio) if you like the Opio you will sample. I would encourage you to go that route if it is a viable option. Koaloha might sound better or the same (should not be worse) and you will never have to wonder if you should consider upgrading from an Opio.

  6. #6
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    You can't expect every ukulele from a particular brand to weigh the same. The weight of wood varies, especially when it comes to the neck. Wood from the base of a tree will weigh more than wood from higher up the trunk.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by rainbow21 View Post
    you will never have to wonder if you should consider upgrading from an Opio.
    That is basically how I've been thinking! It just so happens that the only uke I can try in the wild near me is an Opio. Appreciating everybody's advice so far.
    uke blog

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    songs

    https://soundcloud.com/bennypaul

    videos (includes uke demos)

    http://youtube.com/user/theschumanity

    current ukes

    Johnson UK-200 baritone, Kiwaya Famous FLS-1G, Cordoba 24T

    former ukes

    Martin 1T, Martin Oliver Ditson Dreadnought Soprano, Martin Baritone, Ohana SK-28, Ohana SK-25S, Favilla Baritone, Kala KA-FMBG, Luna Great Wave Concert, Mainland Red Cedar Baritone, Mainland Classic Mahogany Tenor, Oscar Schmidt OU53, Oscar Schmidt OU57, Kiwaya Famous KTS-5 soprano, Ohana TK-38 tenor

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 13down View Post
    That is basically how I've been thinking! It just so happens that the only uke I can try in the wild near me is an Opio. Appreciating everybody's advice so far.
    The main reason I would see for an upgrade is for "status" and the knowledge to have a genuine Hawaiian uke. In practical terms the differences are barely audible. I was really shocked how nice the sitka topped Opios sounded, they actually seemed nicer than the acacia models (and have the cool crown at the end of the fretboard) and very close to the "real thing".

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by merlin666 View Post
    The main reason I would see for an upgrade is for "status" and the knowledge to have a genuine Hawaiian uke. In practical terms the differences are barely audible. I was really shocked how nice the sitka topped Opios sounded, they actually seemed nicer than the acacia models (and have the cool crown at the end of the fretboard) and very close to the "real thing".
    I believe "status" is a small part of the over $400 difference in price. Every little thing is additive. Two big things are the wood used (other similar woods are not koa) and the location of manufacture (you can identify the workers and they can quality control every detail in HI). The Opio is their "budget" overseas line and I have never heard that it is better than its Koaloha relative. Even you state that there is "a barely audible" difference. What is that worth? If you spend an hour a day, each strum and pluck can sound just a wee bit better on the Koaloha. After days, months, and years, that adds up to a lot. $400 or more? Up to each purchaser to determine price/value for personal reasons that are not subject to argument from others.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by rainbow21 View Post
    Even you state that there is "a barely audible" difference. What is that worth? If you spend an hour a day, each strum and pluck can sound just a wee bit better on the Koaloha. After days, months, and years, that adds up to a lot. $400 or more? Up to each purchaser to determine price/value for personal reasons that are not subject to argument from others.
    Well the OP asked for opinion and info on the difference, so I tried to answer the question, and the OP can make that decision based on may sources of information. One should also keep in mind that KoAloha is a very dynamic company that changes their ukes all the time, and if the ones they are building now are "better" than the ones they built in the past can be a matter of opinion, or if it would be worthwhile to wait a few months until their next set of design changes kicks in. But all these differences are subtle in sound, and often more apparent in decorative details that one can like or not. The great fundamental KoAloha sound is there in old, new, and budget models. Also, a great compromise between the Opio and Koa models is the Acacia rosette series with bodies made in Thailand, but final assembly and set-up in Hawaii, and they also look great (IMO).

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