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Thread: Enya EUC-X1M

  1. #1
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    Default Enya EUC-X1M

    I ended up getting a new ukulele after a lot of research. It seemed too good to be true, with so many positive reviews, but the following is my review of the one I received.
    *Disclaimer: I tired to make this a little more for the general public, so I realize some things in this review will be very basic knowledge to you uke experts.


    Enya EUC-X1M (On their website it is listed as X1M HPL)

    I purchased this instrument from Amazon.com. Current link:
    https://www.amazon.com/Concert-Ukule...gateway&sr=8-2
    I paid roughly $50 plus tax. I did opt for a faster shipping method as well, so that added a bit to the total. This would ship free by standard shipping.

    I will start with the accessories included and work my way to the instrument itself.


    ***Accessories***

    Paper booklet: Has some Enya related press, chord chart, and a couple of simple songs.

    Strap: Quite nice red, white, and blue strap. Seems to be well made and works well with the instrument.

    Enya ET-03 electronic tuner: This tuner does a great job for me. I normally use the D'addario/Planet Waves mini tuners, which are also pretty nice. That said, this one seems to lock onto the notes more easily. It also has a very easy to see bright display. *Note: If you put this in the wrong mode, you may have trouble tuning. It's easiest to just leave it in the "chromatic mode", which is represented by a "C" on the screen. To change modes you first turn the tuner on by holding the button down for a couple of seconds. Once it's on you quickly push the button to change to different settings. I think "chromatic" is the default setting, but I accidentally changed the settings once I think, so do keep an eye on that or you might think the tuner is not working properly when you simply have the wrong setting selected.

    Extra strings: The uke ships with the enya carbon (fluorocarbon) strings on it. Also included in a small plastic bag with a little tag inside are Aquila Super Nylgut strings. These are a premium ukulele string. Keep in mind that strings are personal preference. So these aren't necessarily better than the strings that ship with the instrument. It just depends on what you like. I really appreciate that the company strung with one kind of string and also included another variety.

    Gigbag/case: This is a well designed bag. It offers adequate padding. The diagonal zipper closure is stylish. The outside is black with a nice bright blue inside color.


    ***The uke, from headstock down***



    The front of the headstock has a stylish looking black overlay with what I find to be an attractive logo. The string nut is listed as being Nubone, which is a man-made product that is an alternative to real bone. It certainly has the look of real bone. The nut is seated and fit to the instrument properly and the slots are also properly cut and adjusted. Intonation at the first fret is good, further proving this point. The headstock is equipped with closed gear tuning machines. These machines operate very smoothly and do a great job. Each tuning machine has an Enya logo on the back.

    The neck of the instrument is made of mahogany and is the only solid wood in this instrument, other than the bracing and linings in the body. It is a well made neck with smooth playing surface on the back. It's not a slim profile neck, but rather has a bit of mass to it in my opinion. I find it very comfortable and prefer it to some of the really slim necks I've come across on other ukes. This is personal preference, of course.

    The frets are all smooth and crowned well. Running a finger or hand along the sides of the fretboard yields a smooth, comfortable feel. No fret ends protude, no problems whatsoever.

    The fretboard is made of Richlite, which is used by some other makers such as Martin. It's a durable material that isn't as sensitive to the environment. This should help assure that there are never any issues with frets protruding from the board, which can happen on other instruments when their solid wood fretboards get too dry. The feel of the Richlite is smooth. There are side fret dots at frets 5,7,12 and 15 and at 5,7,10, and 12 on the top of the fretboard.
    The action at the 12th fret measures around the 3mm mark. The intonation at the 12th fret is exceptionally good.

    The neck is attached with what Enya calls the BT neck system. Rather than the neck being glued on it is attached with a bolt. That bolt also doubles as the strap pin at the base of the neck. Taylor Guitars was the first company making acoustic instruments, that I'm aware of, that attached their necks with a bolt on process. They still do. I believe this makes the assembly more easy, but also makes it much easier to work on the instruments later if any neck adjustments are needed. Taylor goes through the neck block into the neck but Enya does just the opposite. After all, it'd be really difficult to reach in an ukulele soundhole to tighten a bolt. Turning the bolt into a strap button on the outside part was a very smart idea, in my opinion. So the bolt serves two purposes.

    The heel cap looks like it was cut from a piece of koa wood. I wouldn't guess it to be the same on all of them, but that one was picked up and put on this one.

    Onto the body....
    The body is made of HPL (high pressure laminate). It is made to look like mahognay wood on this model. I think it looks really good and quite realistic. The body is glued together well, with no gaps that I notice. Also, the neck is firmly attached to the body. If I get a flashlight and look closely inside I do see some glue squeeze out and a stray drop or two. To me, this is no problem. I don't typically spend time looking into my ukes with flashlights. On the heel block inside there is a laser etched/burned Enya logo that looks really neat, but once again you won't be seeing that unless you're specifically looking inside.

    The bridge, like the fretboard, is made of Richlite and is a string through the body design. The saddle, like the string nut, is made of Nubone. The saddle is compensated and looking from the end I also noticed that it has a slightly radiused top. That made me look closer at the frets and fretboard to see that they also seem to have some radius to them on this uke. It's not a lot, but a little, unless my eyes are playing tricks on me.

    The strap pin on the bottom of the uke is one with a nice size to safely hold the strap in place.

    I would say this instrument sounds more on the mellow and sweet side of things. To my ears, it has a very pleasing tone. It is not a loud or brash ukulele. If you're looking for a lot of volume and punch this is not the right instrument for you. Perhaps one of their other offerings would work. I think this uke is more of an intimate instrument for personal play or in a solo setting so it doesn't get drowned out by other instruments. I think the tone is really nice with the Enya carbon strings, but do plan to experiment with other strings over time. Of course it came with the Aquila Super Nylgut, so no extra money will have to be spent to try those.


    **Final thoughts/brief summary:


    This instrument is well put together with quality parts, the tuning machines are really good, the sound is very pleasant to my ears, the intonation is exceptional, and the whole package deal is an amazing value. In my roughly 25 years of playing stringed instruments I can't remember a better value when it comes to everything you get for your cash in this package.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by jer; 09-05-2019 at 12:06 PM.

  2. #2

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    Sounds like that instrument should get some kind of "bang for the buck" award.

  3. #3
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    It would be remiss not to state that I had the opposite view of the Enya that I bought as my first Uke.

    I am a long time guitar play so I am well used to stringed instruments.

    The Enya X1 was badly made, with a poor finish and worst of all a bent and twisted neck.

    I returned it and bought a Kala which is vastly superior in terms of build quality, tone and intonation.

    So if you do buy one then I would highly recommend that you check it out thoroughly and return it if for a refund if it is of a defective build.

    Whilst Amazon may offer a cheap source of instruments I would personally only buy from a specialist Music Store, yes you may pay a bit more cash but you would be supporting a business that needs your sales rather than a conglomerate.
    Col.
    From the UK with a bad case of MIAS.
    Korg PA700, Korg Kross 2, Gibson LP, Fender Jazz Bass,
    + Amps, PA, Boss GT100, mixer.
    Ukes - Kala KA-TEME and Risa ST electric solid body.
    Uke wish list, a Bass, make and model yet to be determined

  4. #4
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    I recently got to play the tenor version of this HPL ukulele. I was amazed at the quality, feel, low action and loved it. It I wasn’t five deep in tenors and newly retired I would have bought it on the spot. Great value. IMHO....

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by jer View Post
    I ended up getting a new ukulele after a lot of research.
    I have a couple of Enyas, and they are both very good value for the money, with lots of extras included. I turned the tenor into a resonator uke.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
    https://www.catskillukulelegroup.com/

  6. #6
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    I decided to switch out to the included Aquila Super Nylguts last night. The uke retains the same sort of sound quality. It didn't make as big of a difference in sound that I thought it might, but definitely some. I like the fatter Aquila strings as opposed to the thinner fluoros. I still plan to try some others too. I also decided to take the action down to roughly 2.7mm...it may be slightly less in reality. Still no buzzing anywhere up and down the fretboard. I didn't take enough off to harm any volume or sustain either I don't think. I also did my usual fret polish I do when changing strings. I just use a very, very fine grit mini sanding pad I got from Stewmac a long time ago.

    I forgot to mention the finish, in my earlier post. On this HPL version it has what I'd call a semi-gloss finish that is very smooth to the touch. The neck is also well finished...so no finish issues with this one.
    The included strings had small little metal pieces (think donut shape) that the strings were tied onto before being pulled back up through the body. I just re-used those. I might use something bigger there in the future though, as it seems that would protect more against any potential wear.


    Quote Originally Posted by tm3 View Post
    Sounds like that instrument should get some kind of "bang for the buck" award.
    The one I have should.

    Quote Originally Posted by Col50 View Post
    It would be remiss not to state that I had the opposite view of the Enya that I bought as my first Uke.

    I am a long time guitar play so I am well used to stringed instruments.

    The Enya X1 was badly made, with a poor finish and worst of all a bent and twisted neck.

    I returned it and bought a Kala which is vastly superior in terms of build quality, tone and intonation.

    So if you do buy one then I would highly recommend that you check it out thoroughly and return it if for a refund if it is of a defective build.

    Whilst Amazon may offer a cheap source of instruments I would personally only buy from a specialist Music Store, yes you may pay a bit more cash but you would be supporting a business that needs your sales rather than a conglomerate.
    Sorry you had a bad experience. You are the first negative review I've seen of one. Every company has a dud come out sometimes. It's too bad that one made it past QC.

    Quote Originally Posted by M3Ukulele View Post
    I recently got to play the tenor version of this HPL ukulele. I was amazed at the quality, feel, low action and loved it. It I wasn’t five deep in tenors and newly retired I would have bought it on the spot. Great value. IMHO....
    Awesome....definitely a lot of value in these.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerryc41 View Post
    I have a couple of Enyas, and they are both very good value for the money, with lots of extras included. I turned the tenor into a resonator uke.
    For sure. Do you have any pictures of the one you turned into a resonator uke? That sounds really interesting!

  7. #7
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    I’m thinking the Tiny metal don’t piece string is tied to is the end off a electric guitar string. They work great for that on string thru body bridges. I think I should have purchase the tenor on the spot but had to keep the peace. Ha ha LOL.

    I’m at the new one in and gotta move one out stage.

    Enjoy

  8. #8
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    I sent the company an e-mail yesterday with my thoughts and such and actually got a reply back today. I have to give them some credit there too because I haven't had that success with most other uke companies. My e-mails weren't even answered by some others. So that is very refreshing coming from a large company.


    Quote Originally Posted by M3Ukulele View Post
    I’m thinking the Tiny metal don’t piece string is tied to is the end off a electric guitar string. They work great for that on string thru body bridges. I think I should have purchase the tenor on the spot but had to keep the peace. Ha ha LOL.

    I’m at the new one in and gotta move one out stage.

    Enjoy
    I'm very familiar with ball ends on guitar strings and this one is something different. If I still had some ball ends from guitar strings around I would probably use that. This little piece is quite a bit smaller.

    Haha. Keeping the peace is important.

  9. #9

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    Awesome write up! I've been contemplating a travel to keep in the car. Waiting to see the Nova review but either way it looks an Enya is in the cards at some point!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muybien04 View Post
    Awesome write up! I've been contemplating a travel to keep in the car. Waiting to see the Nova review but either way it looks an Enya is in the cards at some point!
    Thanks!
    The Nova should be as durable as it gets. I would like to have one of those too. It would be better for the car. In my understanding it is molded out of one piece too, so that eliminates any worries of glue getting hot and parts separating. I like the design of that uke too. It looks like they were going for very sleek and modern and nailed it. If I get the chance to have a Nova I will post my review here on UU too.

    This model I have now, I wouldn't risk leaving in a really hot or cold car personally, since it has a real wood neck and real wood for bracing and linings inside. It still requires some care to keep it in good shape....but is still a lot more durable than a lot of other ukes due to the HPL and Richlite.

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