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Thread: What's the worst sounding uke you have ever played.

  1. #1
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    Default What's the worst sounding uke you have ever played.

    Hey Guys! This is my first post on UU and I wanted to choose a topic that's semi-interesting. We all love ukes so I think we deserve to bash on some ukes as well. The worst sounding ukulele I have ever played has to be this concert uke that my friend found his garage. It was probably in there for a REALLY long time because the sound is just terrible. It's a brand I have never heard of and the uke itself is incredibly heavy and quiet. He also found a harmony soprano in his garage and he says its crappy also. So that's my pick. What about you guys? I'm going to say that non-setup counts as well. Try not to offend anyone Lol.

  2. #2
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    hey Ryan, welcome to the UU mate!

    you took the words right out of my mouth there, the thought that immediately came to my mind upon reading your question was a 50's harmony soprano made from birch and with a plastic fretboard. Horrible to the ears and violent on the fingertips!

  3. #3
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    Anything out of tune.

  4. #4
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    There was this no brand soprano at a local music store. It had a heavy heavy neck and what seemed to be real imitation wood. We were there because my husband got the bright idea that maybe I'd like a guitar now that I've figured out how fingers move on frets. He was half right, I did have a better time of it, but it was as apparent to him as to me that guitar just wasn't my thing at all.

    So not wanting to waste a trip, the organs were next to the classical guitars, where the wayward uke was sitting. I sat next to him on the piano bench and tuned the thing, tightened up the tuners so they'd have a better chance of working, and so he went into House of the Rising Sun as a nice music store jam.

    I hit that A minor and I can tell yall right now that I found the Miracle Silent Uke! The harder I played, the quieter it got, which cracked us up. He was all "Play louder!" and I was all "I am!" - so much for showing off how cool a uke jam can be. :/

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  5. #5
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SuzukHammer View Post
    Anything out of tune.
    I've played a lot of ukes out of tune that probably sound better than the one I played

  6. #6
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    I picked up a hobby builder soprano ukulele for $60, made of solid Sapele couple years ago. The builder was more of a guitar builder. The top was way too thick (very dead), frets were guitar sized (too big), intonation was so-so. But the finish wasn't bad. It came with the cheapiest strings and tuners I have ever seen. Changed both the tuners and strings, still couldn't stand to play it. Ended up giving it away. I learned you get what you pay for.
    -Hodge
    Humble strummer of fine ukes.

  7. #7
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    Dixie all-metal banjo uke. To call the intonation "bad" would be an insult to bad intonation. My theory is that whoever made the Dixie knew what a ukulele was supposed to look like but didn't actually bother to measure anything. Even if the friction tuners had been working properly, which they weren't, that thing would have been unplayable.

    Sadly, my original Classic (laminate) soprano seems to have suffered from sitting out in the open in my parents' house for years; it no longer plays in tune at all. It was my first, and I mourn its passing.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by eugene ukulele View Post
    you took the words right out of my mouth there, the thought that immediately came to my mind upon reading your question was a 50's harmony soprano made from birch and with a plastic fretboard. Horrible to the ears and violent on the fingertips!
    Whereas I find my 1950's harmony soprano made from birch and with a plastic fretboard a joy to play... or at least a joy while it stays in tune...

    The worst uke I ever owned is a Spruce top and Zebrawood Laminate from National. Unplayable, and horrid!

    Then I sent it up to Michigan,. and Tudorp did a setup on it, leveled the frets, and worked his magic. Now it is a very nice little concert uke.


    (Thanks again, Tony!)

    -Kurt
    Last edited by ksiegel; 11-22-2011 at 05:04 PM.
    Banjo Ukes: Southern Cross, Firefly, Stella
    Sopranos: Donaldson, Timms, Moku, Waterman, Bugsgear, Outdoor, Waverly Street, Harmony
    Concerts:Cocobolo #412, Ohana CK450QEL, CK-65D, Rosewood Vita, Mahogany Vita,
    Donaldson Custom, Epi Les Paul, National Triolian Reso, Republic
    Tenors: Kala KA-KTG-CY, KoAloha Sceptre, Fluke, Cordoba 20TM
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    Am I done?

    ...Maybe?...

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  9. #9
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    I had a cordoba ck 25 that was basically dead. Nothing against cordobas, I had played one in a music store so I bought one on line (my mistake!). The store one was great, the "deal" I got stunk. Took the uke apart just to see what it looked like inside because I disliked it so much! Ha!
    Enjoy life, it's temporary.

  10. #10
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    I've got two of them.
    My red Dolphin with original strings sounded absolutley like alley cats fighting. Martin clears made it almost bearable, but I don't play it.
    My friend's Oscar Schmidt, spruce top soprano. It sounds like a two by four. She can't stand it, uses it for a decoration. Such a waste.

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