Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Ebony and brightness

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    New England, USA
    Posts
    4,209

    Default Ebony and brightness

    I've seen some uke ads and internet posts which claim that an ebony fretboard adds brightness to the tone. Sure, a dark ebony board looks cool and feels silky smooth, but I'm sceptical that it affects the sound at all. What say you?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Posts
    115

    Default

    I will join in the skepticism for recreational purposes.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    Sparta, Wisconsin, USA
    Posts
    3,308

    Default

    We know that the neck and by way of extension, the fretboard vibrate when you play your uke. (Otherwise, your Snark tuner would not work.)

    But does that influence the sound you hear? I seriously doubt it.

    Jerry, when you changed the plastic fretboard on one of your Magic Fluke to a wood one, did it make any difference to the sound of the instrument?
    There is a subtle yet profound difference between the learning of something and the knowing of that thing.
    You can learn by reading, but you don't begin to know until you begin to try to do.

    --Lou Churchill, Plane & Pilot Magazine

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
    Location
    Mainland
    Posts
    210

    Default

    On my electrics, I have a preference for maple over other boards because I prefer the feel when bending notes. With my uke, I rarely bend and don't really notice the board all that much.
    My Ukuleles: A Hawaiian, an Oregonian, and a Kiwi.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Honoka'a, HI
    Posts
    1,809

    Default

    Another case of "the last 0.5%" of tone that only the very best players will ever have a hope of noticing. Carry on, buy whatever fretboard seems right, and keep practicing.
    Brad Bordessa

    6th Sense Course - Learn to play Hawaiian-style, 6th harmonies

    Listen to my ʻukulele podcast!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2020
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    181

    Default

    I’ve seen the myth grow in the guitar world, but Leo Fender went from maple to rosewood not because it sounded any different, but because he didn’t like how dirty the maple fretboards looked after a while. ;-)

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Canada Prairies, brrr ....
    Posts
    1,595

    Default

    I think that the Fender maple necks had a coat of clear paint for protection that wore off and made the messy look. Ebony is super hard and does not need any treatment, that's why is so popular as fretboards. As for "brightness" it is entirely subjective some people can associate it with uke and string attributes and others can't and it means different things to different people.

  8. #8

    Default

    Pepe Romero Jr did mention in one of his many videos before that he prefers rosewood to ebony for his builds. He says it does affect the overall sound. I think it’s in one of his Instagram videos some time ago. For a person like me who can’t tell if a string is a few cents out of tune it won’t make any difference! Lol.
    Pono Acacia Tenor
    Pono Mahogany Concert
    Pono Mahogany Soprano
    Anuenue Concert Banjolele
    Kolaoha Opio Concert Longneck
    UkeSA Pineapple Sunday Concert
    Cocobolo Concert
    Romero Creations Baritone B6

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •