2023 NAMM April 13–15, 2023 , Please post ukulele news here

By "…crafted from durable Hawaiian koa HPL.…" I presume the Life is Good model has a picture of koa on the back and sides. Not for sale in the UK and Europe anyway, so I doubt I'll get to look at one in person.
Yeah, the full HPL models just have an image of "hand selected koa" or some bs like that. Baz reviewed them, both the soprano and concert. I had a concert...they are ok, not heavy or quiet like typical HPL ukes but still had a bit of that boingy HPL sound and mine had a couple of dead notes.
 
Last edited:
Classic response to a Martin Guitar new Ukulele product release. All the collectors who forked out a fortune on vintage models are going to be nervous about the market now, will the release of these three sopranos challenge the collectors who hoard the vintage Martin sopranos and push the price up all the time? And also people connected to shops which sell competing Soprano models are going to disparage the competition.

Sinker Mahogany wood rescued from Berlize is not going to be cheap. And its not going to be common, once the log is milled and turned into stuff it is over. So an O series made out of Sinker Mahogany is not likely to be in stock for long, even if it does cost USD$1500. Especially if it sounds as good as promised. It looks like it will only be sold to USA addresses, which will make it even more desirable. If anyone buy one and is looking to give it away because they can't bond with it, please send me a PM to get my postal address and I will help you out for no cost.

Maybe Koa HPL is made by stacking veneers of Koa and making them into HPL? Who knows. It is an interesting terminology. The HPL ukulele model is obviously targeted at a specific market that enjoys the clothing and lifestyle for the branding. Most potential buyers are going to be more worried about the uke matching their Tee Shirt than the semantics of the terminology.

It is good that they are three Soprano models, a recognition of the value of the Soprano size. And a challenge out there to the used Soprano market.
No, the koa HPL is not made by stacking veneers of koa.

"We hand-selected the finest Hawaiian koa to give this instrument the rich grain pattern of a much more expensive ukulele..."

If you haven't held one in your hands or don't recall the reviews, it's basically a image of the woodgrain.
 
Last edited:
By "…crafted from durable Hawaiian koa HPL.…" I presume the Life is Good model has a picture of koa on the back and sides. Not for sale in the UK and Europe anyway, so I doubt I'll get to look at one in person.
The faux koa ruins it. Why could they not do the colourful print for whole uke.
 
By "…crafted from durable Hawaiian koa HPL.…" I presume the Life is Good model has a picture of koa on the back and sides. Not for sale in the UK and Europe anyway, so I doubt I'll get to look at one in person.
Good to know it’s Hawaiian koa HPL and not the lesser acacia HPL
 
The faux koa ruins it. Why could they not do the colourful print for whole uke.
I find Martin's approach to these HPL ukes odd, but I presume they know their business better than I do. In their place I'd have made a range of Martin patterned designs—we know they can do that well, just look at their T-shirts—and others with wood prints that didn't simply try to look like a real wood ukulele, but rather did things like faux-marquetry or multiple "planks" of different or weathered wood, make it something you couldn't really do with a traditional uke. The bamboo designs were nice (wish I'd bought one when they were around), but as with the koa there's this strange, somewhat misleading insistence on referring to the pattern as if it's real wood or real bamboo. Cheapens the brand a bit by seeming slightly shady in a "genuine solid mahogany laminate" way.

The Life is Good model is the sort of thing I'd like to see more of from them, fresh and relevant. Again though, there's that fixation on using a photo of wood and pretending it's somehow not that.

Mostly I'm please to see a selection of sopranos from them, at a time when their own range seemed a bit thin and other manufacturers often concentrated on concert and larger.
 
The new 0 Soprano Uke looks interesting, but I'd never pay that much, when you could probably get a vintage Style 3 for that much, or 3 vintage Style 0s. Also, using sipo for the fingerboard looks cheap to me, a darker wood would really be better.

View attachment 150708
According to the specs the fingerboard and bridge are rosewood. I'll agree that the paler look is not as fancy as a darker/more stained one but at least it's quality wood.
 
The S1K looks pretty sweet. But (slap me if you must) will Martin ever offer 1:4 tuners (UPTs) as a factory option?
/ducking to the right with my hands over my head
My 2018 Martin 1T IZ Commemorative Quilted Mahogany tenor came with OEM PegHed UPT tuners. They are not my favorites, so I had the dealer install black Gotoh UPTL tuners instead. I believe there are other Martin models that PegHed tuners come stock.

The lighter Rosewood finger boards and bridges always look to me like they are dried out and desperately need to be oiled. The Black dye applied to my above uke's fingerboard came off when I oiled the fingerboard, and has faded quite badly even though it is kept in its case.
 
it looks like new elite models koa/mahogany/spruce(sitka probably) with ebony fingerboard
 

NAMM 2023 News – HUG Ukulele Unveils Island Ukulele Models​

https://mikesgig.com/namm-2023-news-hug-ukulele-unveils-island-ukulele-models
HUG-Island-Ukulele.jpg
 
Was there today. Surprisingly very few ukulele manufacturers exhibited. None of the K brands were there except for Kala. Only non-K manufactures I noticed there were Ohana and a new company named Hug.
 

Attachments

  • 7ACF40DD-33E5-4FA1-96DD-A18B5D0A3E05.jpeg
    7ACF40DD-33E5-4FA1-96DD-A18B5D0A3E05.jpeg
    3.5 MB · Views: 28
  • 0EA97D89-6D41-4C7E-8C68-8636786EF793.jpeg
    0EA97D89-6D41-4C7E-8C68-8636786EF793.jpeg
    3.9 MB · Views: 31
  • D16848D7-A35B-4AE0-8C2E-50EDFDB06A1B.jpeg
    D16848D7-A35B-4AE0-8C2E-50EDFDB06A1B.jpeg
    4.3 MB · Views: 29
  • 9BCE1D93-D251-4B03-ABBC-D0DE7BAC6025.jpeg
    9BCE1D93-D251-4B03-ABBC-D0DE7BAC6025.jpeg
    3.3 MB · Views: 31
I saw Pepe Romero posting on IG that he will be there with his ukes and guitars. Romero Creation and his own hand made ones.
 
Wow no K's. BTW, Hawaii ukulele and guitar (HUG) is not new... although perhaps their attendance at NAMM is, along with wider promotion.
 
short video, but you can see new series "contour" and spec (1:32 readable spec :D ) i was wrong its acacia not koa, gotta say this year namm is pretty dead for ukulele
 
Kala's new Voyage Collection .
The man behind our new Voyage Collection - @hamiora.art
Sam is a Maori cultural artist that has been telling stories through his art for 13 years and has created over 450 custom art pieces that each have a story.
3f7c9e73184e4d3b4896ef2782bda927
 
Last edited:
Kala's new Voyage Collection .
The man behind our new Voyage Collection - @hamiora.art
Sam is a Maori cultural artist that has been telling stories through his art for 13 years and has created over 450 custom art pieces that each have a story.
3f7c9e73184e4d3b4896ef2782bda927
It sure looks like a Luna.
 
Top Bottom