I have a uke that is really fussy about finger placement- has to be right next to the fret or it sounds horrible. Any way to mitigate that?


Possessor of Ukulele Verdant
May 15, 2021
Reaction score
Set up was done by the uke shop, very fine quality uke; fretboard is just almost too wide for my finger stretch capabilities. This uke requires fairly precise finger placement for clear sounds.
Hey Eggs_n_Ham. I can't imagine the fretboard being too wide to navigate or have to stretch across.
Perhaps are the strings that came on the uke are ones you're not familiar with and don't feel like what you're use to? Can you offer any more of a description on requiring precise finger placement?
What brand of ukulele? I've noticed this problem on cheaper ukuleles, but rarely on better ones.
I find ukes with larger frets to be more forgiving with regards to finger placement. My 50 years old Kamaka Tiki requires more precision than say, my Ohana.
I would not say that the frets are too low on the Kamaka, the playing is all possible, it just takes a little more skill.
Naturally I cant speak for your ukulele.
Last edited:
I have a couple of fne tenor ukuleles that are fussy about finger placement. They require that I have to be using my fingertips placed vertically right next to the fret. Or I get a buzz or muddy note. They don't require mashing the string to the fretboard, but the placement is critical for clean notes.

One of the fussiest is the used Rebel Pluto tenor I recently acquired. While, weirdly, my Rebel Mango Tenor Double Creme isn't that demanding for placement.
Loosen the strings and shim the saddle with a strip of paper and see if it helps with finger placement.
Sounds/feels like a combination of small frets and relatively high action. I have a really nice custom tenor Libero (Antica Ukuleleria). Marco uses very narrow, small/low frets. Even with action set to 2.8-3.0 finger placement is critical. Lowered action to around 2.4 which helped, but a local luthier suggests taller frets. As a picker-not-a-strummer, the lower setup doesn't bother me, but it might some.

Just my experience.
See the Dos Equis XX thread for a solution ... to mitigate this uke, that's fussy about finger placement - consume a number of Dos Equis and give that offensive uke a toss into the fire. 🔥 Problem solved.

:LOL: ( I am kidding of course for those who do not pick up on humor - please do not lodge a complaint or curse my soul too much )
Top Bottom