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Thread: KoAloha v Kamaka Long Neck soprano opinions

  1. #1
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    Default KoAloha v Kamaka Long Neck soprano opinions

    Iíve narrowed down my next uke to one of these; looking for informed opinions on the two. Iíve listened to all the sound samples but canít decide. UU forum users seem to own the KoAloha about 5 to 1 over the Kamaka. Do you have an opinion?

    Thanks
    Andy

  2. #2
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    Haha, I recently had this Kamaka vs KoAloha tenor question and I ended up with the Kamaka, but in the case of a long neck soprano I may actually suggest KoAloha as a general rule since they really shine in the soprano. But I ended up with the Kamaka, so you really can’t go wrong.
    -Ben

    KoAloha Pineapple Sunday 6 String
    Kamaka HF-3 Tenor
    1928 Harmony Johnny Marvin
    Ohana TK-39
    c. 1970's Hikare Baritone
    Gretsch G9100
    Outdoor Ukulele Soprano #43


    Videos

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by bynapkinart View Post
    Haha, I recently had this Kamaka vs KoAloha tenor question and I ended up with the Kamaka, but in the case of a long neck soprano I may actually suggest KoAloha as a general rule since they really shine in the soprano. But I ended up with the Kamaka, so you really can’t go wrong.
    I definitely read thru your thread glad you found the right one for you

    Andy

  4. #4
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    I would ask the sellers to play the instruments for you over the phone, or better yet in a video chat. I bought a used Kanile'a soprano from Elderly and they were happy to have someone play it for me over the phone. I think sellers for higher-end ukuleles would be willing to do that for you. HMS and Mim both sell those brands.
    Richard from Reno
    soprano and concert guy

  5. #5
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    Listening over the phone is better than nothing, but keep in mind that the sound quality is even worse than YouTube. Nothing beats trying in person, but unfortunately that's not an option for many of us.

    Only my opinion, but my Koaloha Opio soprano is amazing. Kamaka sopranos never really left an impression on me. If I was buying a concert or tenor, I suspect I might flip my opinion.
    Glenn

  6. #6
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    The Koalohas that I tried sounded too "boomy" and loud for my taste. The Kamakas sounded more "ethereal" and in line with what strikes me as a more traditional Hawaiian sound. If I was playing for an audience perhaps the Koaloha would be my choice. But, for what I was after, the Kamaka was my choice. A Kanile'a would have been my second choice for the same reasons.

    It didn't hurt that it was a 100 year anniversary model either and I appreciate Kamaka's history.

  7. #7
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    I have a long neck koaloha soprano, ( for trade) a Long neck Koaloha Opio soprano, A kamaka 100 year soprano and a loprinzi soprano.

    the koaloha long neck has the most volume and projection out of all of them...
    Koaloha Opio Acacia Longneck Soprano
    Martin IZ commemorative Tenor
    Loprinzi cherry wood tenor
    The Duke Banjo
    personal build koa and maple concert
    personal build walnut and spruce tenor

  8. #8
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    I've had both. I still have the Kamaka HF-1L and play it daily; I rehomed the Koaloha very soon after I bought it. It's really a matter of personal preference but I find Kamakas have a deeper, more resonant sound and for some reason a much more comfortable neck.

    Koalohas are easier to find an a little less spendy, which I think might be why it appears that more folks on UU have them. I also suspect they come up for re-sale more frequently; I've sold a fair number of ukes in my day but I'll never part with the longneck Kamaka!

  9. #9
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    I recently acquired a KoAloha longneck soprano. At first I wasn’t sure about the sound. It has a cedar top, so a little more mellow than all koa, but still has that soprano bark that people talk about. My Islander soprano is super mellow by comparison. After playing it a lot at home and taking it to a couple jams, the sound is growing on me. I tried a banjo uke a while back and definitely didn’t dig that. This KoAloha LN is giving me the fun tone of the banjo uke without the over the top banjo sound. It’s definitely a loud uke, for sure.
    My ukulele family.....
    KoAloha Koa concert - circa 2006 (Living Waters)
    aNueNue Moon Bird concert - Spruce & Rosewood - 2018 (Blackwater)
    Blackbird Clara - 2019 (Oasis Bright)
    Cocobolo concert - 2019 (Worth Brown)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
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    Toronto, ON
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    I have owned:

    KoAloha Super Soprano and Long Neck Concert
    Kamaka Super Concert

    The only one I would want back is the Kamaka Super Concert ... for a tall person it really is the perfect "Soprano". Tenor scale and the concert sound board ... I only sold it because I had lots of Ukes and was trying to drive the sound board for more sound.
    How bad is your UAS?

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