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Thread: Do I want a Concert-size Uke? Why?

  1. #1
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    Default Do I want a Concert-size Uke? Why?

    Coming to Ukulele as a long-time guitarist, I've focused exclusively on Tenors, because that was the largest size that employed g/G C E A tuning. I have no interest in getting a Baritone (too guitar-like, and I have a Plectrum Banjo tuned that way anyway) or a Soprano (too small). Should I consider getting a Concert? Why? What would it give me that my Tenors don't?
    "Thanks, but you should have heard what I was trying to play!" - T. Monk

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Karol View Post
    Coming to Ukulele as a long-time guitarist, I've focused exclusively on Tenors, because that was the largest size that employed g/G C E A tuning. I have no interest in getting a Baritone (too guitar-like, and I have a Plectrum Banjo tuned that way anyway) or a Soprano (too small). Should I consider getting a Concert? Why? What would it give me that my Tenors don't?
    It will give you variation in size and a slightly different sound. I like a variety of sizes, so I have them all, but not baritone. Don't expect anything radically different from a concert.
    Too many ukes, but I can't stop buying!
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  3. #3
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    I've found that, compared to tenors, concerts provide a livelier, chimey sound, closer to soprano, especially strung reentrant. I have a concert Flea, and play songs I previously played on soprano on it. To me, the sound is more soprano-like, but with more room on the fretboard.
    John

  4. #4
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    Get a tenor scaled soprano, Ohana make a great solid mahogany one.
    Trying to do justice to various musical instruments.

  5. #5
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    If you don't know if you want it, you probably dont want it bad enough.

    A concert is closer to a soprano than a tenor in tension and somewhere in the middle in sound profile.
    If I played tenor and wanted something significantly different in my uke-stable, I would go for a small bodied concert or a long neck soprano. Try to get something that will bring the traditional staccato sound without cramping the fretboard too much.
    The longer sustain of a tenor can be muted, but the quick attack of the smaller ukulele you can't get with a large bodied tenor.

    I mostly play concert and tenor ukes with nice warm sustain, but my long neck soprano often comes out when I want to strum a simple 4/4 strum for a jazz standard or want to try some clawhammer technique. Not that I am good at that.
    Playing:
    Anuenue AMM tenor - Magic Fluke Koa Tenor - Cocobolo concert - Kamaka Tiki concert - Cort concert - Ohana LN soprano.

  6. #6
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    I highly recommend that you try out several concert scale ukes before you decide. Guitar players typically do not prefer them, although my bestie went from guitar to Concert scale ukuleles.
    "Those who bring sunshine and laughter to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves".

    Music washes from the soul, the dust of everyday living.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Croaky Keith View Post
    Get a tenor scaled soprano, Ohana make a great solid mahogany one.
    I'll second that!!

  8. #8
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    I have come to realize that the Concert size doesn't do much for me. For that typical Ukulele sound, I'll grab a Soprano, whereas most of the time, I want a warmer and fuller sound and play a tenor or baritone. If you want to add a different voice, then I suppose a long-neck Soprano would be a better option than a Concert.
    Enjoying instruments by - Beau Hannam - Jay Lichty - Jerry Hoffmann - Luis Feu de Mesquita - Kala - Kamaka - Kanile'a - KoAloha - Ko'olau - Moore Bettah - Pono - Romero Creations - and others

  9. #9
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    Like you, I prefer tenor. I have found that it's easier to achieve excellent intonation with a tenor versus a concert.

    I only buy concerts to give to those of my grandkids & great-grandkids who have small hands. For those with full-sized hands, they get a tenor.

    By the way, you can get GCEA string sets for baritones.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Karol View Post
    Coming to Ukulele as a long-time guitarist, I've focused exclusively on Tenors, because that was the largest size that employed g/G C E A tuning. I have no interest in getting a Baritone (too guitar-like, and I have a Plectrum Banjo tuned that way anyway) or a Soprano (too small). Should I consider getting a Concert? Why? What would it give me that my Tenors don't?
    I've owned accoustic and electric guitars, but uke is the instrument that resonated with me. My first uke experiece was a friend's ovation concert and the first uke I owned was a tenor. I now have mostly tenors, but also a couple baris, concerts and sopranos. If you are a uke enthusiast, I definitely recommend getting a concert. The changes from tenor to concert are minor. String tension is closer to soprano like UkingViking mentioned - several brands like Martin sell concert/soprano strings as the same set. Concerts allow you to hit more range on the neck without sacrificing as much range as a soprano. If you have smaller hands, you might really like a concert uke. Concerts are more portable than tenors. In terms of sound it really depends on the instrument. My KoAloha concert is just as loud as my Pono mahogany tenor and actually warmer in sound - both are strung with Martin Flourocarbons. And, sometimes it's just nice to have some variety in your instruments.

    On the flipside, you're not really missing much by not getting a concert.

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