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Thread: Downside to super scale necks?

  1. #1

    Default Downside to super scale necks?

    Iíve seen a lot of long neck sopranos, as well as super concerts and tenors out there. Iíve read that the benefits are higher tension and better intonation up the neck. What are some challenges or downsides to having a longer scaled neck?

  2. #2
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    You might break the strings if you tune them to ADF#B!

  3. #3
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    They can balance differently. I use a strap for pretty much everything so it isn't an issue for me. I generally like the smaller body/longer neck, especially for reentrant tunings. Of course, you're going to lose some "depth" of the larger body that might be useful for linear tuning.
    Ukulele:
    Iriguchi Tenor "Weeble" - A, WoU Clarity
    Blue Star 19" baritone Konablaster - DGBE
    Cocobolo 16" SC#1-gCEA, SC SLMU
    Ono #42 19" baritone, Ab, LW
    Imua iET-Bb, M600
    Covered Bridge CLN pineapple - Eb cuatro, SC XLL
    Rogue bari
    Bonanza super tenor, cFAD SC LHU
    Kala KSLNG, Eb SC XLU
    Flea soprano, C LW
    Hanson 5-string tenor, dGCEA
    Bonanza SLN GCEA
    Bonanzalele concert
    Guitars:
    Jupiter #47, G, TI CF127

    !Flukutronic!

  4. #4
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    I have both long neck sopranos & concerts, plus I even have a giraffe neck soprano - there are no down sides to them - they're great ukes.

    I found regular soprano scale too tight, & regular tenor bodies too big to play comfortably sitting down, so that's my main reason for having them.

    P.S. All mine have concert scale low G fluorocarbon strings, (Living Water in my case).
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  5. #5
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    My main gigging 'uke is a super concert. The "disadvantages" that pop into my head are:

    1) Certain chord voicings require wider fretting hand stretches (especially those voicings which combine two normally moveable chord shapes)
    2) Fretting hand position changes require your wrist to traverse a longer distance
    3) On many low-end ukes, the longer neck results in an unbalanced instrument
    Last edited by bacchettadavid; 07-23-2019 at 01:54 PM.
    "Who hears music, feels his solitude Peopled at once -- for how count heart-beats plain / Unless a company, with hearts which beat, / Come close to the musician, seen or no?" - Robert Browning, "Balaustion's Adventure"

  6. #6
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    Just a thought. It seems that the body volume to neck length ratio is to produce a sound that is resonates with eachother.

  7. #7
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    I play much cleaner on the super tenor scale and can't think of any down side other than cost: long scale designs tend to be expensive since they're somewhat of a speciality product. Well, I suppose a minor downside is once I got used to the longer scale I didn't want to go back to the cramped quarters of the standard scale.

  8. #8
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    You don't have to think of a super soprano as a soprano with a long neck. You can also think of it as a concert with a small body.
    I own a Cole Clark Ukelady and from the start it has always been a concert instrument with a small body to me.
    Last edited by anthonyg; 07-23-2019 at 04:32 PM.

  9. #9
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    You don't have to think of this as a disadvantage, but a longer scale instrument will not sound exactly like the standard scale; it's a slightly different sound. I recently played a Kamaka standard and long neck soprano back to back and they were quite different, although each had a beautiful tone.

    Andy

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by anthonyg View Post
    You don't have to think of a super soprano as a soprano with a long neck. You can also think of it as a concert with a small body.
    I own a Cole Clark Ukelady and from the start it has always been a concert instrument to me with a small body to me.
    Anthony makes a great point! I like the combination of the small soprano-style body with the slightly longer concert scale neck. And the little extra bit of string tension associated with the longer neck adds a nice firm "feel" to standard "gCEA" tuning (which otherwise sometimes feels a little "floppy" to me, on a soprano scale).

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