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Thread: Describe your perfect uke tone. What is it?

  1. #1
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    Default Describe your perfect uke tone. What is it?

    I am talking about the sound, as descriptive as you can be... what do you prefer in your ukulele's sound? What is your favorite and why?

    In case you are wondering, I am trying to get a sense of what people prefer and I may pick some people's brains on this subject for coming issues of Ukulele Player.
    Ukulele Player is Still ONLINE.... you can find it here:

    https://archive.org/details/issue30_201712
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  2. #2
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    Warm, mellow, not plingy. Smooth and silky. Playing wise- the same. Oh and woody. If that makes sense.
    Last edited by CoLmes; 10-06-2010 at 10:17 AM.
    KoAloha Supported Artist.
    Colmesuke.com

  3. #3
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    Too hard to describe, but theses 2...

    Koa Works and Moore Bettah.

    John
    Last edited by 70sSanO; 10-06-2010 at 10:27 AM.

  4. #4
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    I'm not crazy about the bright, ringing sound people go for nowadays. I think it's a little harsh. I like a "covered" sound when I pluck, which to me means there's a fat, mellow component at the attack. The sharp, bright part of the sound is essential, but I like some fatness as well. I also like a delicate, airy aftertaste. I like to have some legato, without a lot of sustain. That lets me craft the notes which is more musical. I think what I really like is the complexity, a vocal quality to the notes which lets your uke talk as well as just play.

    The flourocarbon strings, and the harder woods, tend to give a lot of sustain and power, but there's something missing to me, overtones, or variation, or something like that.

    One thing I hate is the C string "woofing" which happens a lot and comes out on recordings. There's about 3 db of extra volume in the 180 hz range, and it can get ugly. I heard it a lot with most commercial strings, I get less with natural gut strings. I think most of the string sets have a C that is higher tensiont than it should be, and the low C and D just come on too strong if you hit it too hard.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CoLmes View Post
    Warm, mellow, not plingy. Smooth and silky. Playing wise- the same. Oh and woody. If that makes sense.
    X1 for me too.
    Music is found in the spaces between the notes- in the silence between the chords. Get your spaces right, and you've got it. Albert Greenfield

  6. #6
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    Great Stuff Here! Thanks for the input.
    Ukulele Player is Still ONLINE.... you can find it here:

    https://archive.org/details/issue30_201712
    (Ukulele Player Magazine)
    Ukulele Player Magazine STORE...
    http://www.zazzle.com/ukeplayermagazine

  7. #7
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    Aloha Pippin,
    What I like is a well balance tone with deep rich bottom, nice mid range and crisp high....and can hear all individual notes..
    Also, long substain and deep resonation....MM Stan...

  8. #8
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    I personally prefer my own ukes to favor the mid-to-high tones over the basses - it's a ukulele and needs bright, happy sounds! I have been happiest with fluorocarbon strings (Worths), which add a smoothness to the tone - I think it's an evenness to the sustain, where the sound drops off more slowly rather than some that give a quick "Plunk!" then fade quickly. However you describe the quality of the sound, it should have the power to make you smile just on hearing it.
    1:99
    The PoHo Store

    We've got a ukulele cool that can't be faked. -hoosierhiver
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  9. #9
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    Could be the years of punk rock shows...could be that there is a banjo player locked inside me (I know there is an aspiring banjo uke player- just gotta find the right one)- I like them bright. COuld be the years of damage accordion has done to my mental state and my hearing (I love the thing, but the jokes are so good). The brighter the better...a Sitka Spruce top is non-negotiable and a Vita Uke is so needed (now to break it to my wife).
    My wife is totally the opposite- she likes really warm ukes. She played a Mango, which I suppose sounds like Koa (as if I have played one), and loved it...I thought it was too mellow. Oh well, makes for a lot ukes laying around.

  10. #10
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    Pippin:

    Since you asked, I have TWO different distinct tones I look for on each end of the spectrum. The first tone:
    (Uke A) Is bright, trebly, rings out - good sustain, with accent on the mid-to-highs - it SINGS! High G Uke.

    The second tone:
    (Uke B) opposite from A - Is deep/full/rich warm Low-G toned, with accent on the mid-to-lows. This one doesn't sing, more like tells a suspenseful and captivating story around a camp fire where you hang on every word. Low G Uke.

    How's that for descriptive...haha

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