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Thread: Help me choose a new baritone ukulele up to $300

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
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    Texas, USA
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    Default Help me choose a new baritone ukulele up to $300

    Hello to all. I am new to the sport of ukulele. And new to musical instruments in general. Although I did have a ukulele as a young child, but never advanced to any extent.
    My goal is to learn the instrument, and buy a quality instrument that will make learning more fun and continue to motivate me as I progress. I have a habit of accumulating more of any certain thing that I want or need, and that seems contradictory of the travel-light attitude that the ukulele itself presents. So I have come here seeking advice.

    I have considered purchasing a Makala MK-B bundle with the hard zippered foam case. And even a Kmise. But I don't care for the plastic parts, and know I would be wanting something better as soon as I got it. But this could be just what I need as a bottom of the barrel option, if I were to eventually have two baritone ukes. And the case itself looks to be of a high enough quality. But I really think I'd like to jump right in for something more of a mid-level uke, which might be a lifetime uke for me.

    I have an idea of what I like. Mainly quality components. But am not knowledgeable enough to have any hard and fast requirements, except that I want a baritone uke. And my upper limit is pretty set at under $300. But I might be happy with something closer to $150.

    A wide neck profile. Wide nut.
    I like the look of a slotted headstock.
    Don't care for painted on logos. Although at my price range this appears to be an unavoidable consequence.
    I also prefer a solid headstock without laminate. Again this may be something I have to accept in my price range.
    Quality tuners are a must.
    I want something of a traditional look. So matching top, sides, and back. In a medium or dark color. So no spruce top.
    And a deep or woody sound I believe. Nothing too bright.
    Not sure that I'm for or against either solid wood, solid top, or all laminate.

    Some of the candidates are the Lanikai ACSTB, Cordoba 20BM, Kala KA-B, Kala KA-ZCT-B, Oscar Schmidt OU57. Something in mango or spalted maple maybe.

    What do you guys say? What are your thoughts on these or others that I should consider?

    Thanks for any and all advice or comments that may point me in the right direction for purchasing a new baritone ukulele.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    JoCo, NC (near Raleigh)
    Posts
    4,701

    Default

    This seems like it fits the specs
    https://www.theukulelesite.com/shop-...-baritone.html
    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
    Pelem, A, EJ45LP

    !Flukutronic!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Hanks View Post
    That sure does check a lot of boxes. And looks like a nice compliment to my Yamaha classical.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA
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    I have the Kala solid mahogany baritone. It's an excellent value & I highly recommend it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Pickering, ON, Canada
    Posts
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary52 View Post
    I have the Kala solid mahogany baritone. It's an excellent value & I highly recommend it.
    I will third this recommendation. A member and friend has one, I have played it and it is a great instrument
    Currently enjoying these ukuleles : *LdfM tenor, *LfdM 19" super tenor. *LfdM baritone, *I'iwi tenor , *Koolau tenor, *Webber tenor, *Kimo tenor, *Kimo super concert, *Mya Moe baritone, *Kamaka baritone, *Gianinni baritone, *Fred Shields super soprano, *Kala super soprano, *Loprinzi super soprano, *Black bear ULO concert , *Enya X1 concert, *Enya X1 pineapple soprano, *Enya Nova *Gretsch tenor, *Korala plastic concert

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
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    I have a spalted Kala KA FMB and like it a lot. It’s about the only uke I play much any more. It sounds good to me, and I really like it’s looks.
    Kala "Spalted" baritone - Lo D GBE- Fingerstyle
    Gold Tone tenor banjolele - Lo F BbDF Fingerstyle
    Luna “Peace” concert - CGBD Plectrum music

    Kala tenor eight string - gGcCEEAA Strum

    Flea "Red" concert - Hi-G CEA - Wall hanger
    Kala "Exotic Mahogany" soprano - Hi-A DF#B Wall hanger
    Mahalo yellow "Smiley" soprano - Wall hanger
    Ka-Lai Pineapple soprano (old) gift - Bookshelf

    God gave us old age so we wouldn't mind dying so much.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    Upper Hale, Surrey/Hants border, UK.
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    Maybe check out the Kala cedar top too, mine is fitted with fluorocarbon non wound strings, great tone.
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2019
    Location
    Texas, USA
    Posts
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    Quote Originally Posted by Down Up Dick View Post
    I have a spalted Kala KA FMB and like it a lot. It’s about the only uke I play much any more. It sounds good to me, and I really like it’s looks.
    I like the looks of the spalted woods. And my guitars have spruce top with darker sides.

    But kinda wanted a more traditional look for my uke. And I'll likely have to buy new or have limited options on the used market.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by old and slow; 11-25-2019 at 04:16 AM.

  9. #9
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    Nov 2019
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    Quote Originally Posted by Croaky Keith View Post
    Maybe check out the Kala cedar top too, mine is fitted with fluorocarbon non wound strings, great tone.
    I think I'd like the flourocarbon strings. Might even use the middle four classical guitar strings.

    I like the look and sound qualities that come with the cedar top also. So maybe that's an option I haven't considered. But I worry about it's durability.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by old and slow View Post
    I think I'd like the flourocarbon strings. Might even use the middle four classical guitar strings.

    I like the look and sound qualities that come with the cedar top also. So maybe that's an option I haven't considered. But I worry about it's durability.
    I knew Keith would recommend his Kala cedar top as he always does, they have a great tone. Cedar is softer then mahogany, but you probably know this with your classical guitar. I own a few cedar topped instruments and with a bit of care you should no issues, they won’t explode on impact or anything
    Currently enjoying these ukuleles : *LdfM tenor, *LfdM 19" super tenor. *LfdM baritone, *I'iwi tenor , *Koolau tenor, *Webber tenor, *Kimo tenor, *Kimo super concert, *Mya Moe baritone, *Kamaka baritone, *Gianinni baritone, *Fred Shields super soprano, *Kala super soprano, *Loprinzi super soprano, *Black bear ULO concert , *Enya X1 concert, *Enya X1 pineapple soprano, *Enya Nova *Gretsch tenor, *Korala plastic concert

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