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Thread: Decent 'cheap' uke as birthday gift.

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheWannabe90 View Post
    Thanks for the feedback. The only thing that worries me is the shipping costs to belgium. I found a shop here that sells oscar schmidt ukes, are they any good?
    I used to take ukulele lessons from a professional musician -- mandolin and autoharp mainly. Anyway -- she bought an Oscar Schmidt and was pleased with it. I'd say its a good first uke -- especially for a starter. I second the idea of a concert. I love concerts.

  2. #12
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    The Oscar Schmidt is a good starter uke. I started with an OU3. One suggestion though, change the strings to Aquila nylguts if you can. They make a big difference in the sound.
    The foregoing opinion is mine, freely offered and worth precisely what you paid for it.

  3. #13
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    The concert size is perfect for starting out, not too small.
    Kanile'a 6 String K-1, Kamaka HF-3, Makala Concert

    Thank God the Tiki Bar is open!!!!

  4. #14
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    I started with an Oscar Schmidt OU3, and I think it sounds horrible. Aquillas definitely helped it (I think they help all laminate ukes) but it still sounds like a pile of poop. It's hidden away in the back of my closet, and every 6months or so I take it out, just to remind myself why I keep it there. I heard some people really liked the kamoas to start with, I think Aldrine played one for a bit in one of the early uke-giveaway contest videos. They have them in the UU store I think too.

    EDIT: Oh just click on the different ukes in the uke store, there's little videos of them being played. I never knew that.... you learn something new every day
    Last edited by Dane; 04-13-2010 at 10:11 AM.

  5. #15
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    I don't like the idea of what people refer to as a "Starter Instrument" When most people say this it means "Oh it's kinda crappy but it's cheap so it doesn't matter all that much" My definition of a starter uke is something that will get you Started, that will get you inspired. My OU3 did not inspire me, and I owned it for a year, almost never played it. I dropped it once and one of the strings broke, I replaced the strings with aquillas, and noticed that it sounded a lot better, so I thought "well if it sounds this much better I bet there's something a LOT better." So I started researching and eventually bought a new uke, and the sound difference was just astounding, that's when the inspiration came, and that's when I fell in love with the uke.

    Maybe I got a bad OU3, I don't know, I just know that it sounds horrible to my ears, and I'd rather make my own uke out of a carboard box and some rubber bands, at least it would sound artistic haha

  6. #16
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    dane, i think you got a bad ou3. i don't know much about the concert size, but i have an ou4 and absolutely love it. i took my time to buy it, tho. i played every uke in the price range i was looking for and found the ou4 was better sounding than the comparable lanikais and ohanas that the store had. i then played every ou4 they had and picked the best sounding one. i've also noticed that all oscar schmidts are coming with aquilas now instead of the ghs pos strings.

    to each his own, but i recommend oscar schmidt.
    Kani ke ō, he ihona pali
    Jason - the 'ukulele playing bassoonist punk!!

    Oscar Schmidt OU-4 Tenor 四弦 shigen
    Lanikai LU-8 Tenor 八弦 hagen
    EleUke Cutaway Jazz Concert 電弦 dengen
    1968ish Beltone Soprano 旧弦 kyuugen
    1950ish Dixie Banjo Uke 芋弦 imogen
    Makala Dolphin Red burst 赤弦 akagen --my son's uke

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by arashi_nero View Post
    dane, i think you got a bad ou3. i don't know much about the concert size, but i have an ou4 and absolutely love it. i took my time to buy it, tho. i played every uke in the price range i was looking for and found the ou4 was better sounding than the comparable lanikais and ohanas that the store had. i then played every ou4 they had and picked the best sounding one. i've also noticed that all oscar schmidts are coming with aquilas now instead of the ghs pos strings.

    to each his own, but i recommend oscar schmidt.
    That's the thing, it's all about playing it. My OU3 is about 3 years old now I think, I also don't like the concert size though, too small, hurts my fingers for the type of playing I do. And it's also personal preference, I like a mellow sound, that's why I love my solid mahogany tenor, it's very mellow, it came with aquillas, and I didn't like em cuz they were too bright, so I made it even more mellow with different strings.

    If the Original Poster could gather up some money, and say to their friend "Hey we all pitched in and got you $____ to use, let's go to the local store with lots of ukes and you can play em and find the one you want!" I think that would be the ideal situation, and then maybe while he's there he could find something he REALLY likes and then he could buy the other portion of it if it's too expensive.

    EDIT: (I'm doing a lot of edits today aren't I?) If the person you want to get the uke for is someone that is really into music, most likely, they would prefer to find the instrument themselves by playing different ones. There has to be a good connection between the player and the instrument, otherwise the player won't want to play it as much, or even if they're good, it wont sound as good because that attachment to the instrument won't be there. BUT, there's loads of good ukes out there, and as you can see, many people have fallen in love with their instruments that they ordered over the internet and never played beforehand, I am one of them.
    Last edited by Dane; 04-13-2010 at 11:27 AM.

  8. #18
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    Thanks for all the replies, now I'm off to try some of those oscar schmidts.
    I agree that a concert size is a good idea, soprano might just be a bit too small,
    and tenor may be a bit too close to a guitar.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheWannabe90 View Post
    Thanks for all the replies, now I'm off to try some of those oscar schmidts.
    I agree that a concert size is a good idea, soprano might just be a bit too small,
    and tenor may be a bit too close to a guitar.
    I assure you Tenor is not close to a guitar, at all haha. A baritone a little bit more-so.

  10. #20
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    I originally got a concert because I thought tenor would be too big and I didn't want slightly smaller guitar, but it's not even close, I'd have to guess it's about half the size of my acoustic guitar, which is smaller type guitar (A triple-0) I ended up buying a tenor later because I didn't like how small concert was, I can't imagine how my fingers would feel with a soprano

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