Best Tenor Ukulele (2020)

Buying an instrument is like buying a new house or a new car. While a ukulele is not as expensive as a house or car, it is still an investment you don’t want to take lightly.  Especially if you plan on spending over $1,000.

You should therefore take the time to do a bit of research before you spend any money.

The goal is twofold. Not only do you want an instrument that best suits your needs, but you also want one that fits your budget. Finding one that meets these two criteria, however, can prove to be somewhat of a challenge.

A challenge we hope to make a little easier with this guide. In it you will find 9 of the best tenor ukuleles currently on the market.

No matter what your budget, or skill level, you are sure to find a tenor ukulele on this list that meets your needs.

Besides reviewing the top 9 tenor ukuleles on the market, we will also share a few tips that will help you decide if the ukulele is right for you, as well as give you advice on how much you can expect to spend on this type of instrument.

What about the best tenor ukulele brands you ask? Well we will cover that too.

What Is a Tenor Ukulele?

If you already play the ukulele you know there are four different sizes for you to choose from. The soprano, concert, tenor, and baritone.

In terms of overall body size, the tenor ukulele is the third largest of the four. It is also the largest standard ukulele that uses traditional ukulele tuning.

The baritone is the only type of ukulele that is tuned like a guitar.

Due to the size and acoustic properties of the tenor ukulele, the sound it produces is very full. The tenor ukulele is also able to cover more frequencies than both the soprano and concert ukulele.

Because of the lower frequencies produced by the tenor ukulele, it is often compared to the classical guitar.

Because the tenor ukulele is able to produce such a full sound, more and more musicians are starting to prefer it over other instruments.

Best Tenor Ukulele

Its thicker sound makes it the perfect instrument for solo performances. And thanks to its longer neck, you will have more frets to play around with.

The rosewood fingerboard is very comfortable.The size of the tenor ukulele doesn’t just affect its sound, it also makes it more comfortable to play than the smaller soprano ukulele.

The tenor ukulele is usually around 26 inches long. Compare that to the soprano ukulele which is usually 21 inches long, and you can see there is quite a bit of extra space.

This extra space makes playing the instrument a lot easier.

Now that you have a better understanding of what the tenor ukulele is all about, let’s dive in and review some of the top models currently being sold.

The Best Tenor Ukulele - The Top 9 Reviewed

Now let’s get down to business and review some of the best tenor ukuleles. Please know we only considered the highest rated tenor ukuleles for this list:

  1. Donner DUT-3
  2. Kala 3KOA-TG Elite
  3. Kala KA-15T
  4. Kala KA-KTGE-C
  5. Fender Montecito
  6. Oscar Schmidt OU28T
  7. Martin T1K
  8. Makanu Professional
  9. Kala KA-SMHT

We used consumer reviews and our own research to compile this list. These are unbiased reviews designed to help you pick the best possible ukulele.

1. Donner DUT-3

Donner Tenor Ukulele DUT-3 26 inch Spruce Body Sun Pattern Ukulele Kit with Tuner Strap String Case

Our rating:

Up first on the list is the Donner DUT-3, which just so happens to be one of the cheapest tenor ukuleles you can purchase.

It comes in three different sizes so you can choose which one will work best for you. If you want the richest tenor sound, which most people do, opt for the 26 inch model.

If you are looking for the best value for the money, the DUT-3 fits the bill. The sound can’t compare to what you would get with a more expensive model, but it is decent enough to get the job done.

It is the perfect ukulele for a beginner who is on a tight budget.

While the DUT-3 won’t last a lifetime, nor is it equipped to be played on a stage, it is still a great option for a complete beginner.

Pros

  • The inlay design on the fretboard gives you that Hawaii look and feel.
  • Comes with spare strings, a case, a strap, and a tuner.
  • Features chrome tuning pegs similar to the ones you would see on a classical guitar.
  • The tuning pegs make it easy to keep your ukulele tuned.
  • Sides and backs made using mahogany.
  • The rosewood fingerboard is very comfortable.

Cons

  • The included strap is not the best quality. It will probably be best to invest in a better one.
  • The strings are not the best quality. They may work for beginners, but if you are a serious performer, you will need to invest in better quality strings.
Donner Tenor Ukulele DUT-3 26 inch Spruce Body Sun Pattern Ukulele Kit with Tuner Strap String Case
  • Tenor Ukulele with mahogany back&side and spruce top bring you richer and brighter sound.
  • Rosewood fingerboard and bridge provides a comfortable playing feel.
  • Smooth and accurate, Donner patented chrome-plated guitar style tuners to keep your ukulele always in tune.
  • Unique design on fingerboard : Auspicious Clouds and the top mark Sun Logo.
  • Comes with ukulele bag, ukulele strap, carbon nylon string and digital clip-on tuner as gifts.

2. Kala 3KOA-TG Elite

Kala 3KOA-TG Elite Tenor Ukulele Gloss Natural

Our rating:

Comes with Kala strings made using fluorocarbon.If you have read any of our other guides, you will know we are big fans of the Kala brand. This model, however, is a little different than some of the others.

The Kala 3KOA-TG Elite is part of the Kala Elite product line. This line was designed for professional musicians and those who have a little extra money to spend.

With a price tag of just under $1,500, the 3KOA-TG Elite is one of the most expensive tenor ukuleles on the market.

With such a high price tag, you can believe this ukulele comes with some pretty impressive features.

When it comes to sound and looks, the 3KOA-TG Elite is as close to flawless as it gets. The sound is like nothing you have ever heard before.

If you are a musician that tours a lot, you will absolutely love the 3KOA-TG Elite.

Pros

  • Made using premium grade Koa sourced straight from Hawaii.
  • Has a beautiful Honduran mahogany neck.
  • Comes with Kala strings made using fluorocarbon.
  • Fingerboard inlays made from mother of pearl.
  • Great craftsmanship.
  • Comes with a hardshell case.

Cons

  • Very expensive. Not everyone can handle the price tag.
Kala 3KOA-TG Elite Tenor Ukulele Gloss Natural
  • Size: Tenor Top: Solid Hawaiian Koa Back & Sides: Solid Hawaiian Koa Fingerboard & Bridge: Ebony Fingerboard, Bridge, Heel Cap and Headstock Overlay Fingerboard Width: 11/2" Fret Position Markers: Oval Pearl Tuners: Kala Custom Tuners with Acacia Buttons Nut & Saddle: Graphtech TUSQ Nut & Bone Saddle Strings: Kala Fluorocarbon Finish: UV High Gloss Includes hardshell case
  • Kala use Solid Hawaiian Koa for this Elite concert model
  • A modern UV finishing process brings out the unique appearance of each instrument with incredible clarity
  • The UV finish is sprayed on in thin coats and uses far less material than a typical lacquered instrument
  • In essence, a UV finish is far less impactful to our environment than other finishes

3. Kala KA-15T

Kala KA-15T Satin Mahogany Tenor Ukulele Bundle with Gig Bag, Tuner, Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD, and Polishing Cloth

Our rating:

If you know anything about the Kala brand, you know they have a wide range of products. This particular ukulele is one of their best reviewed products in their ukulele range.

If you are looking for something right around the $200 mark, the KA-15T is a great option. It comes as a kit meaning you will get a few accessories to help you get started.

Finding a good ukulele at this price is not very common. We put this one in the category of best bang for your buck.

The way this ukulele feels when you are playing it will make you feel like you are playing the most expensive ukulele on the market.

Pros

  • Stays in tune for a long time thanks to geared tuning pegs.
  • Comes with a digital tuner that is super easy to use.
  • Made using Mahogany wood.
  • Has a walnut fingerboard.
  • Comes with a gig bag for easy storing.

Cons

  • The decorative finish may cause buzzing around the tuning pegs.
Kala KA-15T Satin Mahogany Tenor Ukulele Bundle with Gig Bag, Tuner, Austin Bazaar Instructional DVD, and Polishing Cloth
  • Satin Mahogany Tenor Ukulele
  • Top, Back, Sides, and Neck: Mahogany
  • Satin Finish, Walnut Fingerboard
  • GraphTech NuBone Nut and Saddle
  • Aquila Super Nylgut Strings

4. Kala KA-KTGE-C

Kala KA-KTGE-C Tenor Ukulele - Cutaway w/ EQ Gloss

Our rating:

As you can see, we have a bit of a Kala theme going on here. And for good reason. Kala really does produce some of the best tenor ukuleles.

The cool thing about the KA-KTGE-C is the fact it is acoustic electric. This means you can play it through a PA system just like you would an electric guitar.

The KA-KTGE-C is the type of ukulele that can offer you something you can’t get with other ukuleles.

The cutaway design, and ability to be amplified make it very appealing to guitarists looking to transition to the ukulele.

Pros

  • Features a cutaway neck which makes it super easy to play close to the body.
  • Made mostly out of Hawaiian Koa, the wood used to make the original ukulele.
  • Has a bright tone that’s great for solo play.
  • Has a built-in tuner making it super easy to keep your ukulele in tune.
  • Low action designed so people can easily transition from guitar to ukulele.
  • Comes with a one year warranty.

Cons

  • The one big issue with this ukulele is with the strings. They are of poor quality and will need to be replaced.
Kala KA-KTGE-C Tenor Ukulele - Cutaway w/ EQ Gloss
  • Body size: TenorTop: Hawaiian koaBack and sides: Hawiian koaTrim: Maple with white and black accentsHeadstock: Slotted with laser-etched mother-of-pearl inlayNeck: MahoganyFingerboard material: rosewoodFingermarkers: White dotsSide markers: Black dotsBridge: RosewoodTuners: Gold Grover open gearNut: Graph Tech NuBoneSaddle: Graph Tech NuBoneStrings:Compatible with D'Addario TitaniumFinish: GlossCase sold separatelyKala UK-300-TR (active system)Features : 2-band EQ with chromatic LED tunerInput Impedanc
  • Top: Hawaiian koa
  • Back and sides: Hawiian koa
  • Trim: Maple with white and black accents
  • Headstock: Slotted with laser-etched mother-of-pearl inlay

5. Fender Montecito

Fender Montecito Tenor Ukulele - Koa

Our rating:

Yes, the world famous guitar brand Fender also makes ukuleles. Over the years their brand has expanded and they now offer a variety of stringed instruments.

With such a big brand name it's not surprising that Fender came out with the Montecito tenor ukulele.

It is a good quality ukulele that would be considered in the mid range price range.

Pros

  • Made out of Koa wood, which is the traditional wood used to create ukuleles in Hawaii.
  • Features a Fender telecaster style headstock which gives it that rock and roll feel.
  • Wood quality gives it a beautiful tone.
  • Has that one of a kind Fender design.
  • Available in multiple colors.
  • Has a no-tie bridge which makes it super easy to change the strings.
  • Has a solid top giving it a resonant tone.

Cons

  • Users have complained about it going out of tune fairly often.
Fender Montecito Tenor Ukulele - Koa
  • Tenor-sized ukulele
  • Solid Koa top, Koa back and sides
  • Abalone-bound top, bound back and Fingerboard; Abalone rosette
  • 4-In-line Tele headstock with vintage-style tuners
  • No-tie Bridge; bone nut and saddle

6. Oscar Schmidt OU28T

Oscar Schmidt OU28T Ukulele - Satin

Our rating:

Great craftsmanship.There was no way we could make a list of the best tenor ukuleles and leave out the Oscar Schmidt OU28T.

This is an eight string ukulele which means there are two strings close together in four different slots.

Because you have eight strings, each tuned to a different octave, you will be able to play some pretty complex chords with the OU28T.

As with all ukuleles, there are some positives and negatives that come with it. When you think about it, the eight string ukulele is similar to the 12 string guitar, which by the way is extremely popular.

For some, the OU28T is a little too out there for them. Which is totally okay. But once you hear it, we believe you will change your mind.

The sound it produces is out of this world. Yes, it is a little tough for beginners to catch on to. But once you get it, you will love it.

Pros

  • Produces a very rich sound.
  • You are able to cover more octaves due to the extra strings.
  • Mahogany body gives it a lovely resonance.
  • You can choose either a rosewood fretboard or engineered wood fretboard.
  • Great craftsmanship.

Cons

  • Can be a bit difficult for beginners to play.
  • Doesn’t come with any accessories.
  • The tension from the strings can be an issue for the bridge.
Oscar Schmidt OU28T Ukulele - Satin
  • Fine Mahogany top, back and sides
  • Alternative/engineered/Tech wood Fingerboard and Bridge
  • signature "aloha" on head stock
  • Pearl Dot fret Inlays
  • NuBone nut and saddle

7. Martin T1K

Martin T1K Koa Tenor Ukulele Natural

Our rating:

Martin is another well known brand that creates some of the best guitars in the world. When it comes to acoustic guitars they are literally in a league of their own.

However, what most people don’t know is, for the last 100 years, they have also been creating ukuleles.

The Martin T1K is one of their best models. It is made using Koa wood, which, as you know by now, is the best wood to use if you are trying to get that classic Hawaiian sound.

Anytime you buy an instrument created by the Martin brand, you will be very impressed with what you hear.

The intonation and the build make it one of the best sounding tenor ukuleles on the market.

Pros

  • Built using only the highest quality wood.
  • Great workmanship.
  • Produces a very rich, and lovely tone.
  • Finished using satin lacquer.
  • Comes with a gig bag.

Cons

  • No strap buttons meaning you won’t be able to stand up and play.
  • Included gig bag is not the best quality.
Martin T1K Koa Tenor Ukulele Natural
  • Full tenor ukulele sound
  • Solid Hawaiian koa back, sides and top
  • Dovetail neck joint
  • Select hardwood neck with solid morado fingerboard
  • 17" scale length with 20 frets

8. Martin T1K

Makanu Tenor Ukulele 26 Inch Professional Ukulele Beginners with Gig bag - Matte Finish

Our rating:

The main reason we included the Makanu Professional on this list is because of its price. If you are on a budget this is the best tenor ukulele you can get.

As a matter of fact, it is probably one of the cheapest ukuleles currently on the market. And guess what? Despite its price, it still gets rave reviews.

When buying this ukulele be sure to keep your expectations in check.

While the tone and playability are considered decent, they are not on the same level as a Fender or Martin.

But, if you are someone in need of an inexpensive tenor ukulele, this could very well be a good option for you.

Pros

  • Comes in multiple colors and designs.
  • Features a super comfortable rosewood fretboard.
  • Made using Mahogany wood.
  • Has amazing audio qualities.
  • Put together by hand which is very rare these days.
  • Comes with a branded gig bag.

Cons

  • Strings are of poor quality.
  • Can get out of tune fairly quickly.

9. Kala KA-SMHT

Kala KA-SMHT Solid Mahogany Tenor Ukulele, Natural, Small

Our rating:

Okay, this is the last Kala on this list. We promise!

The Kala KA-SMHT is a mid range ukulele you can get for around $300. And as you would expect with any Kala instrument, the KA-SMHT has a classic design, and a quality build.

The KA-SMHT, however, is made out of Mahogany which gives it some different sound qualities. It actually has a sound that is more like a classical guitar.

The KA-SMHT shows how different model ukuleles can produce a completely different tone. The tone you get with Mahogany wood is completely different than the tone you get with Koa wood.

While both sounds are great, if you are looking for a more mellow sound, the KA-SMHT is your best option.

Pros

  • Great tone.
  • Great for solo players.
  • Smaller than some of the other tenor ukuleles.
  • Great for those with larger hands.
  • Constructed using Mahogany wood.
  • Has a walnut fingerboard.
  • Can be dropped into low G tuning for an amazing sound.

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with a carrying case.
  • Some users have complained about the tone of the strings being too sharp.
Kala KA-SMHT Solid Mahogany Tenor Ukulele, Natural, Small
  • All-Mahogany Ten Uke; Mahoangy Neck with Laurel Fingerboard - Satin Natural

Who Is The Tenor Ukulele Best Suited For?

Players with larger hands tend to love the tenor ukulele. This is because the larger size gives them a more comfortable feel when they hold the instrument.

Solo players also love it because it gives them the ability to cover more frequencies. When you are able to cover more frequencies the sound you can produce is truly out of this world.

For the most part, the type of ukulele you choose will depend on the sound you prefer. If you prefer a deeper, more mellow tone, then the tenor ukulele is a great instrument for you to play.

Is The Tenor Ukulele a Good Option For Beginners?

When it comes to playing the ukulele, the soprano, concert, and tenor are all played the exact same way.

Because of this, it is perfectly okay for a complete beginner to start with the tenor ukulele. In fact, due to the longer fretboard, you will have more room to move around and learn the instrument.

It is actually not that uncommon for beginners to opt for the tenor ukulele over the other types.

The one big downside is price. The tenor ukulele tends to be a little more expensive than the other types. This is mainly due to the different materials used when creating it.

If price is a concern, opt for an entry level soprano ukulele instead of the tenor.

If you start out on the tenor ukulele, and later wish to switch to the soprano or concert, please know there will be a period of adjustment due to the smaller size of the fretboard on the latter.

The period of adjustment isn’t anything to be too worried about. Most people are able to transition with no problems.

What Are The Best Ukulele Brands?

When it comes to the ukulele, there is no shortage of brilliant brands. Many of which have Hawaiian sounding names due to the fact the first ukulele was created on the island of Hawaii.

There is basically a split between older brands and newer brands. For example, Fender and Martin would be considered old school brands because they have been around for such a long time.

Most know them for their guitars. But they are both some of the top manufacturers of ukuleles.

On the other hand you have the newer brands such as Donner, Kala, Luna, Mahala, and Pono. These are your traditional high end brands that offer starter kits as well as a host of mid range products.

Many of their kits will include plectrums, tuners, cases, strings, and many other items to help you get started.

How Much Should You Spend on a Tenor Ukulele?

Everyone is different and will approach purchasing an instrument a little different. Not only do we all have different budgetary needs, but we also have different desires for what we want in an instrument.

However, no matter what your budgetary needs, there are a few general rules as to how much you should spend on a ukulele.

If you are a beginner, opt for a tenor ukulele kit. You can get one for less than $100 and it will come with everything you need to start your journey to become a ukulele player.

Some of the ukuleles we reviewed above are actually ukulele kits. Check them out to see what all they have to offer.

If you are on a tight budget, you can find a decent ukulele for around $60. While it won’t be ideal for playing large gigs, it will be great for someone just starting out.

If you already have a little experience playing the ukulele, and you want to go to the next level, look for models that are between $100-$300.

These are known as mid-range ukuleles and they are a step above the beginner ukuleles. While their tone isn’t on the level of the more elite models, it is decent enough if you are playing paid gigs.

After the mid-range models you have the elite models. The elite models will cost around $500. These models are built incredibly well and look beautiful.

As far as tonal qualities go, the elite models are the best of the best.

When you are just starting out there is no need to invest in an elite model. However, as you get better, and if you want to take your skills to the next level, you will eventually need to upgrade to a better model.

So to answer the question, “how much should you spend on a tenor ukulele?”, the answer is it depends.

It depends on what your budget is as well as where you are in your journey. Are you looking to play the ukulele as just a hobby, or are you looking at it as something more serious?

Answering these questions will help you decide which ukulele you should invest in.

Final Thoughts

So, now you know the best tenor ukuleles on the market. And as you can tell by the 9 we reviewed, there is a huge variety of instruments that fall into the tenor ukulele category.

In order to choose the best one for your situation, you must take the time to educate yourself on what products are available. You must also consider your own unique needs.

What exactly are you looking for? Are you looking for a model you can test out to see if you like playing the ukulele? Or are you looking for something you can take on tour with a band?

There are suitable products for each of these situations. You should be able to find one in the list above.

Based on some of the information shared in this guide, it should be easy to see why so many people are starting to fall in love with the tenor ukulele.

The key is making sure you find the right model for your needs. Because when you have the right model, playing the ukulele can be a ton of fun.

Choosing the right model can also be the difference in you sticking with it, or just giving up after a few weeks.

Before you make your decision, make sure you consider all the pros and cons. Once you have that hashed out, picking the right tenor ukulele should be a breeze.

Well that’s all for this guide. As usual, we hope you enjoyed it and learned a little bit about what makes a great tenor ukulele.

If you enjoyed it, please share it on your favorite social media platforms.

Happy strumming!

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Video Transcript

[Music]

hello buzz got a ukulele comm another

instrument review this is a new brand to

the got a ukulele reviews page I do find

it dizzying at the moment the amount of

new brands that are coming out from

China and selling it on Amazon

principally a lot of them falling it's

the same sort of category that they're

either all much of a muchness the same

kind of things somewhat of a dreadful

and occasionally there's a gem in there

I've not played this one before this is

the dollar do n n e r dc-3 concert

ukulele and it's quite a standout look

and it's a standard concert scale

instrument double body nice and curvy

that top is made of laminate spruce in

two pieces and we've got laminate back

and sides in two pieces and two pieces

on the back as well and there's my first

gripe and misleading product

descriptions and whilst they don't claim

this to be solid they claim the back and

sides on this to be made of Triple A

grade mahogany or for a start it's

lamina mahogany so it's never going to

be Triple A grade wood it's not tone

wood it's plywood but that's that's

horrible mahogany of pale uninteresting

boring what makes that Triple A grade

I've absolutely no idea it's not Trevor

a grain it's just marketing speak to

make you thinking you going something

more than you're not I don't like that

decoration wise we've got brown edge

binding on the top and the back which is

rather nice I like that rosewood bridge

because I like bridge plates that are a

different shape from the norm so they

didn't just go into parts bin it's nice

and curvy it's a slotted design for easy

string changes that subtle is made of

bone and is heavily compensated no see

other decoration we've got this etched

laser etched then some rosette now I'm

not against some rosettes the Baton

Rouge that I recently reviewed uses a

Sun rosette but I think on a pale top

wood like spruce

I just think that's to Starkey's I don't

like it's not for me you might like it

that's fine

there we are you'll also have spotted

we've got a strap button on this one pre

fitted and also another one on the heel

of the neck that's nice for people who

want a strap and don't fancy the job of

changing thirty-one themselves mahogany

neck also pale incidentally the whole

thing's finished in the fat in coats

rain ice three pieces in the neck joint

at the heel joint of the headstock no

real complaints there

in fact the construction all over is

pretty good there's no gaps there's no

cold with no dents there's no dings or

anything to worry about topping that

neck which is a fairly standard ukelele

profile typically Chinese at the nut

standard width by 36 mil topped with

rosewood with this wouldn't inlaid sort

of clouds or smoke kind of detail again

it's not for me I don't like it but I'll

come on to another reason why I don't

like it in a moment and because of that

detail you've got no outward facing

position markers because they get lost

in the pattern but we have got side

position markers on the black edge band

ends of the sides of the neck at the 5th

7th 10th and 12th in white dots really

annoying the one on the 7th is not

evenly placed though you probably not

gonna be able to tell that but it's not

it's not in the middle this one it's not

in the middle the OCD and me would

scream at that I'm not interesting

enough headstock shake quite like that

with the dollar logo inlaid in pearl um

and something I've never seen before

these are generic unbranded geared

tumors but usually these little facing

caps are made of chrome they're not

these are made of clear plastic so you

can see through them I don't know why

but I really like that that's just fun

nothing wrong with her - I did like that

that of course would mean nothing if

they didn't work well and sometimes at

this sort of price you find that these

tumors can be grandiose they keep these

aren't these are good in fact they're

very good nice and smooth

buttons and plastic not too big no what

to complain about price-wise I think you

can only really get these on Amazon

there are about 50 quid in the UK about

60 $70 in the US so really cheap

fluorocarbon dhama brand fluorocarbon

strings I suspect that means it's

fishing line but you get loads of other

stuff as well you get a dollar branded

gig bag you get a strap you get another

set of strings then you get a clip I

can't be bothered you get another set of

strings and you get a clip on tuner now

usually that has me saying well this

puts the ukulele in the

too-good-to-be-true category because

quite often these brands the bundle

loads of stuff with them tend to when it

is is too good to be true

I mean underlying ukulele isn't

particularly great so I tend to steer

people away from those sort of deals you

know if you're getting more than you

think you should get your money it's

probably not a good deal it kind of fits

in that category but let's see how it

plays as I say pretty well made some

design details

I don't like but it's pretty well-made

it's a solid it's nice and light it's

ever so slightly neck heavy ballast here

it's just dipping so if you play it

without a strap you'll just find it

dive-bombing

I don't like that setup at the nut is

perfect really good and that's good to

know because that's the difficult one to

adjust

sadly the setup at the bridge I think is

far too high and that is throwing the

intonation off at the 12 so when we go

up to the 12 the octave above is too

high

now that's relatively easily fixed but

bearing in mind you'll be buying one of

these from amazon amaz not going to do

that for you you can have to do it

yourself or take it to a luthier and

that's a bit more money

not a huge biggie I suppose I didn't

tell you about the frets the first is 18

nickel silver frets 14 to the body and

pretty nice and tidy inside but you know

what surprised me about this

is it's not first class but it's got a

real nice punchy bright spruce generally

tone loads of volume let sustained

sustained to sustain you can go in there

I think I think it's really nice lovely

strummed it's kind of got a real sort of

jangly sound to it for a 50 great

instrument it's not wrong with that I

quite like that sound

finger pate is really nice too because

our sustain but here's the thing I don't

usually use outward-facing fat markers I

rely on the side ones and I really rely

on them a lot but what I try them allows

thing in picking this one is that these

patterns are putting me off and I'm

going into the wrong threat positions

because my mind is saying oh that's

that's a marker so it's making me think

that this is the third when it's like

the fifth and it's making me think that

this is a fist when I'm actually at the

sixth

that's really really irritating I don't

write that so I don't not only not like

the look of that but I find it it's

confusing me when I'm playing it there

we are

[Music]

it sounds nice

I like the volume I like the punch I

like the sustain it's a real mixed bag

this one it needs a set better setup I

don't like the decoration at all I don't

want that it's been neck heavy but sound

wise you know it's pretty good if one of

the better ones I played other laminates

so I'm really into mines it gets a mixed

school go carefully with it maybe you'll

think 50 quid one ever got to lose and

you're probably right you know not not a

bad instrument at all but just little

maybe things about it that are putting

me off it Donna do you see one do you

see three rather concert you glowing

available on Amazon back soon more

reviews see again bye bye

you

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Video Transcript

[Music]

hello welcome back to God a ukulele

reviews it's a special one this week

it's a brand you'll have heard of before

that brand is Carla possibly the biggest

ukulele brand in the planet but it's

quite a special one from Carla because

it looks like that this is the Carla

elite series basically what Carla did

Carla

mainly make instruments and pretty much

solely make instruments in the Far East

they're very reliable a very well known

but fairly recently decided to make a

handmade made in USA made in California

model or rather a series of models and

this is one of those this is the from

the KOA series it's the carla three koa

tenor and the KOA series comes in three

levels basic entry-level koa bit fancier

color and this is the top of the line

and then at three signifies that shimmer

that shine that flame that stripe I mean

it's just wow all solid Hawaiian koa

book-matched

two-piece top book-matched two-piece

back and two-piece sides

it's just stripe upon stripe upon flame

it changes in the light it's just one of

the most beautiful instruments I'd ever

had on the reviews absolutely stunning

ABS absolutely gorgeous I mean I'm just

lost for words really I mean I don't

really need to say much more just you

know just just look at the wood the wood

says everything it is just stunning

wonderful gloss finish UV cured gloss

finish on the top and it's really well

done really neat and tidy inside as well

diminutive rosewood through body bridge

there with a straight bone saddle I'm

really nice really simple not taking up

too much space on the top good we've got

a mahogany neck single piece naturally

what I really like is that they didn't

put grass on this they have put they put

sat in on it which means that it doesn't

have a sticky feel it's fast on the

fingers evany end cap there and well

it's topped with an ebony fingerboard 18

Nichols of

14 to the body oval position markers at

5 7 10 and 12 and they repeated with

dots on the side as you can see that's

rather nice they're really nicely

dressed no issues at all my gripe here

that nut is 35 no wide Carla lists them

as 38 mil on the website I'd like them

to be fair the egg mil I think that's a

bit narrow for me for a tenner but there

we are the nut is not made of bone it's

made of new bone don't why there's a

difference but there we are

headstock is faced in Ebony the Carla

logo there is inlaid in what looks like

pearl or possibly a pail of wood really

nice and gold hardware acacia buttons on

the K branded tumors it comes with this

is my second gripe it comes a stock with

wounds where and below G I know some

people like low G don't give me low G as

a matter of course and certainly don't

give me a wound low G which I hate the

best but it comes with I'd be taking

these off immediately and putting

something else on there but it also does

come with a really nice hard case with

the Carla branding and there's a

humidifier in there and whatnot and it

sits nice and plush very nice case

indeed and that is gonna cost you in the

UK just to spit under 1200 pounds so

some of you may gasp and say that's a

very expensive instrument it is an

expensive instrument but actually a

stock tena koe Mecca in Hawaiian koa

it's gonna cost you more than that a

começo with this sort of flame or a can

Alea with this sort of flame in tennis

Kel is going to cost you considerably

more than that

so perhaps 1200 pounds is not that bad

it's actually pretty good value for that

grade of wood and a build quality like

this and the build is superb it's light

it's balanced the joints and nicely sort

of sham fat off around the top edge it's

just feels utterly utterly classy

Wow like a drum and typical color bright

shimmery voice I can't get past that

Logie but there we are it's a really

nice shimmer see tons of sustain tons

and tons and tons of sustain loads of

volume

it's gorgeous absolutely gorgeous

[Music]

[Music]

everything is strong all the notes are

there together

[Music]

it's beautiful beautiful sound I love

everything about it

don't like the nut width wouldn't have

the low G on it but you know the the

strings are easily changed but the wood

is absolutely stunning

the voice is stunning it's it's it's

high-end it's a high-end color

instrument I think what Carla have done

here is something pretty special I would

highly recommend these thanks very much

to Matt warns a world of Youk's who

stalks these and loan me this one sorry

about the finger prints when it comes

back to you Matt you'll have to give it

a Polish but I have looked after it as

you would with an instrument like this

the Carla 3 koa TG tenor ukulele

homemade in Petaluma California highly

highly recommended back next week more

instruments coming soon

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Video Transcript

so excited and new ukulele day

because we sell ukuleles don't we

I am cutting advice let's cut a lot my

hands I'm really worried about because

this is a super sharp knife

so we're already eating special orders

for special kala ukuleles for special

people or special

this is our first eagle a unboxing

actually Angela's here because she has

fallen in love with Jamaica ladies I

always like the equally yes I've been

wise to drag newfound love I've been

dragging my feet got cool bag hey I

don't have a big bag I could order you

one nice one you want me to give you an

item next within this one I can do that

I don't think they make up nicely

actually they probably do mm-hmm yeah

holds our poor little surfer surfer into

a ukulele on strap to the surfboard the

surfers play ukuleles oh there's some

guitars on there too whoo or it could be

a bass we're really big ukulele yeah I

can see the keeper this one's fancy one

I think the retail is about $450 454

billion dollars 1 billion $454 yeah but

it actually goes for about two nah man

got a new bone nut

let's get it out nice

tell us already that is it's got

electronics a little cutaway looks like

a tiny guitar in ten when you wearing it

into your body it is not tuned

did not I think as a built-in tuner all

of her dogs heavy-duty male did she say

who this is for sure why not

doesn't matter just for my good friend

Tim Worley I don't know if this puts him

in the lead on instruments purchased

from our new music

I don't know that's kind of cool all

right what'd you play it because you've

been playing a little bit I don't want

to be on video playing you know videos

okay you tell me how funny how it feels

Oh get Daddario strain already Phil's

dreams goes nicer than the other ones

yes

what should love it

looks like feels good

it's koa like how the strings are clear

yep

so you can feel a difference between the

$300 ukulele and the $47 you Delaney's

thanks sure you sure you want one I do

want one for yourself

I want one but I wanted to look a little

bit more feminine oh we're leaving like

very masculine guitar not is it not such

a manly thank you ukulele

yep so this belongs to ten

uncle book and the jalapeno overdrive

yeah what if this will be on the album

it wasn't gonna be funny if it was

alright cool so this is the kala

ka k cg e - c cutaway yeah I like that I

like cut away and built electronics

because I didn't really mean those sorry

it's a little smaller than you then you

don't have to go as far I won't

yeah I want one for me I don't I deserve

one yes you did alright just thank you

so much for watching this was our kala

unboxing it really loves a good unboxing

video don't they of course especially

when there's Angela involved so awesome

Tim's coming to pick this up on Saturday

so if we do a Howser Saturday video I'm

sure he'll play us some ukulele yeah

awesome thanks guys can you ukulele give

us a call or you know he's weasel I

don't forget it

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Video Transcript

[Music]

hello buzz got a ukulele comm another

instrument review this is a new brand to

the got a ukulele reviews page I do find

it dizzying at the moment the amount of

new brands that are coming out from

China and selling it on Amazon

principally a lot of them falling it's

the same sort of category that they're

either all much of a muchness the same

kind of things somewhat of a dreadful

and occasionally there's a gem in there

I've not played this one before this is

the dollar do n n e r dc-3 concert

ukulele and it's quite a standout look

and it's a standard concert scale

instrument double body nice and curvy

that top is made of laminate spruce in

two pieces and we've got laminate back

and sides in two pieces and two pieces

on the back as well and there's my first

gripe and misleading product

descriptions and whilst they don't claim

this to be solid they claim the back and

sides on this to be made of Triple A

grade mahogany or for a start it's

lamina mahogany so it's never going to

be Triple A grade wood it's not tone

wood it's plywood but that's that's

horrible mahogany of pale uninteresting

boring what makes that Triple A grade

I've absolutely no idea it's not Trevor

a grain it's just marketing speak to

make you thinking you going something

more than you're not I don't like that

decoration wise we've got brown edge

binding on the top and the back which is

rather nice I like that rosewood bridge

because I like bridge plates that are a

different shape from the norm so they

didn't just go into parts bin it's nice

and curvy it's a slotted design for easy

string changes that subtle is made of

bone and is heavily compensated no see

other decoration we've got this etched

laser etched then some rosette now I'm

not against some rosettes the Baton

Rouge that I recently reviewed uses a

Sun rosette but I think on a pale top

wood like spruce

I just think that's to Starkey's I don't

like it's not for me you might like it

that's fine

there we are you'll also have spotted

we've got a strap button on this one pre

fitted and also another one on the heel

of the neck that's nice for people who

want a strap and don't fancy the job of

changing thirty-one themselves mahogany

neck also pale incidentally the whole

thing's finished in the fat in coats

rain ice three pieces in the neck joint

at the heel joint of the headstock no

real complaints there

in fact the construction all over is

pretty good there's no gaps there's no

cold with no dents there's no dings or

anything to worry about topping that

neck which is a fairly standard ukelele

profile typically Chinese at the nut

standard width by 36 mil topped with

rosewood with this wouldn't inlaid sort

of clouds or smoke kind of detail again

it's not for me I don't like it but I'll

come on to another reason why I don't

like it in a moment and because of that

detail you've got no outward facing

position markers because they get lost

in the pattern but we have got side

position markers on the black edge band

ends of the sides of the neck at the 5th

7th 10th and 12th in white dots really

annoying the one on the 7th is not

evenly placed though you probably not

gonna be able to tell that but it's not

it's not in the middle this one it's not

in the middle the OCD and me would

scream at that I'm not interesting

enough headstock shake quite like that

with the dollar logo inlaid in pearl um

and something I've never seen before

these are generic unbranded geared

tumors but usually these little facing

caps are made of chrome they're not

these are made of clear plastic so you

can see through them I don't know why

but I really like that that's just fun

nothing wrong with her - I did like that

that of course would mean nothing if

they didn't work well and sometimes at

this sort of price you find that these

tumors can be grandiose they keep these

aren't these are good in fact they're

very good nice and smooth

buttons and plastic not too big no what

to complain about price-wise I think you

can only really get these on Amazon

there are about 50 quid in the UK about

60 $70 in the US so really cheap

fluorocarbon dhama brand fluorocarbon

strings I suspect that means it's

fishing line but you get loads of other

stuff as well you get a dollar branded

gig bag you get a strap you get another

set of strings then you get a clip I

can't be bothered you get another set of

strings and you get a clip on tuner now

usually that has me saying well this

puts the ukulele in the

too-good-to-be-true category because

quite often these brands the bundle

loads of stuff with them tend to when it

is is too good to be true

I mean underlying ukulele isn't

particularly great so I tend to steer

people away from those sort of deals you

know if you're getting more than you

think you should get your money it's

probably not a good deal it kind of fits

in that category but let's see how it

plays as I say pretty well made some

design details

I don't like but it's pretty well-made

it's a solid it's nice and light it's

ever so slightly neck heavy ballast here

it's just dipping so if you play it

without a strap you'll just find it

dive-bombing

I don't like that setup at the nut is

perfect really good and that's good to

know because that's the difficult one to

adjust

sadly the setup at the bridge I think is

far too high and that is throwing the

intonation off at the 12 so when we go

up to the 12 the octave above is too

high

now that's relatively easily fixed but

bearing in mind you'll be buying one of

these from amazon amaz not going to do

that for you you can have to do it

yourself or take it to a luthier and

that's a bit more money

not a huge biggie I suppose I didn't

tell you about the frets the first is 18

nickel silver frets 14 to the body and

pretty nice and tidy inside but you know

what surprised me about this

is it's not first class but it's got a

real nice punchy bright spruce generally

tone loads of volume let sustained

sustained to sustain you can go in there

I think I think it's really nice lovely

strummed it's kind of got a real sort of

jangly sound to it for a 50 great

instrument it's not wrong with that I

quite like that sound

finger pate is really nice too because

our sustain but here's the thing I don't

usually use outward-facing fat markers I

rely on the side ones and I really rely

on them a lot but what I try them allows

thing in picking this one is that these

patterns are putting me off and I'm

going into the wrong threat positions

because my mind is saying oh that's

that's a marker so it's making me think

that this is the third when it's like

the fifth and it's making me think that

this is a fist when I'm actually at the

sixth

that's really really irritating I don't

write that so I don't not only not like

the look of that but I find it it's

confusing me when I'm playing it there

we are

[Music]

it sounds nice

I like the volume I like the punch I

like the sustain it's a real mixed bag

this one it needs a set better setup I

don't like the decoration at all I don't

want that it's been neck heavy but sound

wise you know it's pretty good if one of

the better ones I played other laminates

so I'm really into mines it gets a mixed

school go carefully with it maybe you'll

think 50 quid one ever got to lose and

you're probably right you know not not a

bad instrument at all but just little

maybe things about it that are putting

me off it Donna do you see one do you

see three rather concert you glowing

available on Amazon back soon more

reviews see again bye bye

you

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Video Transcript

[Music]

hello buzz got a ukulele comm another

instrument review this is a new brand to

the got a ukulele reviews page I do find

it dizzying at the moment the amount of

new brands that are coming out from

China and selling it on Amazon

principally a lot of them falling it's

the same sort of category that they're

either all much of a muchness the same

kind of things somewhat of a dreadful

and occasionally there's a gem in there

I've not played this one before this is

the dollar do n n e r dc-3 concert

ukulele and it's quite a standout look

and it's a standard concert scale

instrument double body nice and curvy

that top is made of laminate spruce in

two pieces and we've got laminate back

and sides in two pieces and two pieces

on the back as well and there's my first

gripe and misleading product

descriptions and whilst they don't claim

this to be solid they claim the back and

sides on this to be made of Triple A

grade mahogany or for a start it's

lamina mahogany so it's never going to

be Triple A grade wood it's not tone

wood it's plywood but that's that's

horrible mahogany of pale uninteresting

boring what makes that Triple A grade

I've absolutely no idea it's not Trevor

a grain it's just marketing speak to

make you thinking you going something

more than you're not I don't like that

decoration wise we've got brown edge

binding on the top and the back which is

rather nice I like that rosewood bridge

because I like bridge plates that are a

different shape from the norm so they

didn't just go into parts bin it's nice

and curvy it's a slotted design for easy

string changes that subtle is made of

bone and is heavily compensated no see

other decoration we've got this etched

laser etched then some rosette now I'm

not against some rosettes the Baton

Rouge that I recently reviewed uses a

Sun rosette but I think on a pale top

wood like spruce

I just think that's to Starkey's I don't

like it's not for me you might like it

that's fine

there we are you'll also have spotted

we've got a strap button on this one pre

fitted and also another one on the heel

of the neck that's nice for people who

want a strap and don't fancy the job of

changing thirty-one themselves mahogany

neck also pale incidentally the whole

thing's finished in the fat in coats

rain ice three pieces in the neck joint

at the heel joint of the headstock no

real complaints there

in fact the construction all over is

pretty good there's no gaps there's no

cold with no dents there's no dings or

anything to worry about topping that

neck which is a fairly standard ukelele

profile typically Chinese at the nut

standard width by 36 mil topped with

rosewood with this wouldn't inlaid sort

of clouds or smoke kind of detail again

it's not for me I don't like it but I'll

come on to another reason why I don't

like it in a moment and because of that

detail you've got no outward facing

position markers because they get lost

in the pattern but we have got side

position markers on the black edge band

ends of the sides of the neck at the 5th

7th 10th and 12th in white dots really

annoying the one on the 7th is not

evenly placed though you probably not

gonna be able to tell that but it's not

it's not in the middle this one it's not

in the middle the OCD and me would

scream at that I'm not interesting

enough headstock shake quite like that

with the dollar logo inlaid in pearl um

and something I've never seen before

these are generic unbranded geared

tumors but usually these little facing

caps are made of chrome they're not

these are made of clear plastic so you

can see through them I don't know why

but I really like that that's just fun

nothing wrong with her - I did like that

that of course would mean nothing if

they didn't work well and sometimes at

this sort of price you find that these

tumors can be grandiose they keep these

aren't these are good in fact they're

very good nice and smooth

buttons and plastic not too big no what

to complain about price-wise I think you

can only really get these on Amazon

there are about 50 quid in the UK about

60 $70 in the US so really cheap

fluorocarbon dhama brand fluorocarbon

strings I suspect that means it's

fishing line but you get loads of other

stuff as well you get a dollar branded

gig bag you get a strap you get another

set of strings then you get a clip I

can't be bothered you get another set of

strings and you get a clip on tuner now

usually that has me saying well this

puts the ukulele in the

too-good-to-be-true category because

quite often these brands the bundle

loads of stuff with them tend to when it

is is too good to be true

I mean underlying ukulele isn't

particularly great so I tend to steer

people away from those sort of deals you

know if you're getting more than you

think you should get your money it's

probably not a good deal it kind of fits

in that category but let's see how it

plays as I say pretty well made some

design details

I don't like but it's pretty well-made

it's a solid it's nice and light it's

ever so slightly neck heavy ballast here

it's just dipping so if you play it

without a strap you'll just find it

dive-bombing

I don't like that setup at the nut is

perfect really good and that's good to

know because that's the difficult one to

adjust

sadly the setup at the bridge I think is

far too high and that is throwing the

intonation off at the 12 so when we go

up to the 12 the octave above is too

high

now that's relatively easily fixed but

bearing in mind you'll be buying one of

these from amazon amaz not going to do

that for you you can have to do it

yourself or take it to a luthier and

that's a bit more money

not a huge biggie I suppose I didn't

tell you about the frets the first is 18

nickel silver frets 14 to the body and

pretty nice and tidy inside but you know

what surprised me about this

is it's not first class but it's got a

real nice punchy bright spruce generally

tone loads of volume let sustained

sustained to sustain you can go in there

I think I think it's really nice lovely

strummed it's kind of got a real sort of

jangly sound to it for a 50 great

instrument it's not wrong with that I

quite like that sound

finger pate is really nice too because

our sustain but here's the thing I don't

usually use outward-facing fat markers I

rely on the side ones and I really rely

on them a lot but what I try them allows

thing in picking this one is that these

patterns are putting me off and I'm

going into the wrong threat positions

because my mind is saying oh that's

that's a marker so it's making me think

that this is the third when it's like

the fifth and it's making me think that

this is a fist when I'm actually at the

sixth

that's really really irritating I don't

write that so I don't not only not like

the look of that but I find it it's

confusing me when I'm playing it there

we are

[Music]

it sounds nice

I like the volume I like the punch I

like the sustain it's a real mixed bag

this one it needs a set better setup I

don't like the decoration at all I don't

want that it's been neck heavy but sound

wise you know it's pretty good if one of

the better ones I played other laminates

so I'm really into mines it gets a mixed

school go carefully with it maybe you'll

think 50 quid one ever got to lose and

you're probably right you know not not a

bad instrument at all but just little

maybe things about it that are putting

me off it Donna do you see one do you

see three rather concert you glowing

available on Amazon back soon more

reviews see again bye bye

you

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Video Transcript

​[Music]
hi folks
time for another ukulele review video
review to complement those that are
already written up on got a ukulele this
is the Martin t1 K tenor ukulele a
standard tennis shaped uke in solid
color and it's really rather nice this
is not quite bottom end of the Martin
range but it's not far away
bearing in mind that Martin can run up
to about five thousand dollars three
ground in UK pounds this cost me just
under four hundred UK parents are pretty
cheap a serious price for a ukulele of
course but cheaper than any comparable
handmade tenor koa Hawaiian uke the
reason it's cheaper is it's not made in
the Martin factory in the USA equally
it's not made under license in the Far
East either this is made by Martin they
have a factory just over the border in
Mexico where the costs are cheaper but
it's Martin parts and this put together
by Martin employees so still a Martin
but I know some people scoff at that so
let's have a look we've got a standard
shape nice koa wood nothing particularly
fancy for this money in terms of flame
or curl but we've got a nice book match
top with some substrate and color
variation and a nice book match back
with an arch on the back to help with
sound projection nice but a darker wood
stripe going around the sides which I
think looks great and it's finished in a
hand rubbed oil satin finish which
doesn't help to show off any of the
flame or color variation in the car but
it doesn't have feel much
I'd like satin eggs myself I don't go
for a lot of bling and gloss I do own
some but given the choice I like to
playing ukulele and this is a plain
ukulele the downside to that satin
finish is it's quite easy for this you
to pick up singing marks scratches if
you have the bad habit like I've
sometimes do if planting your finger
when you're little yeah I've put some
little dings in it already
I've stuffed it up here from vigorous
strumming but you know I don't really
mind that's fine by me this is an
instrument it's meant to be played I
don't want to put it in a glass cabinet
and have it as a display piece what's
the point of that I play music so we
have a standard shape no bling binding
the only decoration on the top is they
transfer black white black sound hole
rosette the bridge material is a
rosewood or morado wood with a little
bit of stripe in it and a tusk
compensated saddle it looks fairly
standard at the bridge it's a tie bar
bridge but actually when you really get
into the detail of it it's really nicely
shaped rather than just a straight slot
for this saddle to fit into it's
actually a nice routed out shape smooth
down at all little slot I know that
because I took it out too low the action
really nice on to the neck we have what
Martin described as a hard wooden axe I
don't know what sort of wood it is NATO
mahogany perhaps I don't know but it's
nice it's one piece which is good to see
all the way through and it feels really
smooth it's lovely
really well shaped nicely finished quite
a bit of chunk nice profile up at a nut
albeit a very narrow not compared to
that on say my kind of layout which
which is put a much wider nut up here
but it's nice the fingerboard is topped
with morado wood which is got a nice
stripe to it as you can see the edges
aren't bound but the frets are set
perfectly well there are no no rough
edges
it all looks very neat we have tiny
finger position markers fret markers on
the uke which I don't really understand
threat markers on that part of the
ukulele facing out don't really benefit
the player at all because you don't see
them well I rely on I'm glad to see side
fret markers and thanks Martin for that
it's amazing how many manufacturers
failed to put those on instruments I
mean how much can it cost but if these
ones to me seem to be markers for people
looking at me so they recognize it as an
instrument but they're so small some
people have said they look nice and cool
and understated I believe them off
altogether if you're gonna do them
that's more up to the headstock we have
a standard Martin shape with quite a
quite an exaggerated Martin crown the
headstock is faced with a veneer of
curve and my first gripe with the
instrument the logo look this is this
isn't an expensive instrument in the big
scheme of things I'm not expecting
inlaid abalone or mother-of-pearl but
this is a it's a sticker
it's a raised sticker it reminds me of
those things that are stuck onto
greeting cards that your kids come home
from nursery with it's it's tacky I
don't understand it why they couldn't
have just gone with a gold silkscreen
print or transfer which would have
looked just wouldn't look better to be
honest I don't know
Chile's provided by grover open back
tuners these are external tuners these
really are accurate and work extremely
well they're exactly the same tune as as
on my channel a k1 the only difference
being these got white plastic buttons
the can layer have silver buttons um and
then you have it I mean it um it's it
feels right it's got a nice weight it's
nicely balanced it's well put together
there wasn't a mark on it at all it's um
it's really nicely built that neck is
attached to the body with a dovetail
joint which is quite unusual and
something Martin do with that guitar so
it's not just glued and bolted on
there's actually a channel routed out
here off the top of the body and it's
slotted in to give a better set and you
know you've got that sort of quality
throughout that's Martin bill quality
comes from many many years of making
stringed instruments the action at the
nut when it arrived for me was
absolutely perfect the nut is really
nicely finished to the saddle needed to
go down a touch but not a lot that was
just personal preference and no
complaint and actually if you're buying
an instrument of the price you really
should be prepared to have a play with
the setup if you're gonna play it
because it take it you're a serious
player if you are buying an instrument
like this it arrived with Martin teller
fluorocarbon strings now I had already
heard that this was a very bright sharp
sounding instrument and those strings
for me really did just push that a
little bit too far I always recommend
that string choice is a personal thing
you should experiment I've experimented
with several sets and settled on these
Fremont Fremont Fremont black line
fluorocarbon strings which just take the
bike down a little bit not too much it's
still a bright instrument for you well
as you can hear it
[Music]
yeah I mean in terms of comparing it to
a Hawaiian Colonel a tenor uke it's not
quite as rich but there's not a lot in
it the volumes certainly there it beats
the camera on that the camera layer
feels a little warmer there's a little
box here I mean that really sounds like
I'm doing it a disservice but you know
I'm just I'm just being honest it's a
great sound ukulele and for me it comes
absolutely highly recommended it's not a
vintage but I'm not in the market for
buying vintage Oaks and got a ukulele is
about letting people know what they can
buy off the shelf in fact does it matter
that it says Martin on it take my leg
off I mean it's an instrument it's very
well made it's got great stairs and I'd
recommend you try what I think they're I
think they're great fun and I think this
will serve you well for many years
[Music]


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Video Transcript

[Music]

hi folks

time for another ukulele review video

review to complement those that are

already written up on got a ukulele this

is the Martin t1 K tenor ukulele a

standard tennis shaped uke in solid

color and it's really rather nice this

is not quite bottom end of the Martin

range but it's not far away

bearing in mind that Martin can run up

to about five thousand dollars three

ground in UK pounds this cost me just

under four hundred UK parents are pretty

cheap a serious price for a ukulele of

course but cheaper than any comparable

handmade tenor koa Hawaiian uke the

reason it's cheaper is it's not made in

the Martin factory in the USA equally

it's not made under license in the Far

East either this is made by Martin they

have a factory just over the border in

Mexico where the costs are cheaper but

it's Martin parts and this put together

by Martin employees so still a Martin

but I know some people scoff at that so

let's have a look we've got a standard

shape nice koa wood nothing particularly

fancy for this money in terms of flame

or curl but we've got a nice book match

top with some substrate and color

variation and a nice book match back

with an arch on the back to help with

sound projection nice but a darker wood

stripe going around the sides which I

think looks great and it's finished in a

hand rubbed oil satin finish which

doesn't help to show off any of the

flame or color variation in the car but

it doesn't have feel much

I'd like satin eggs myself I don't go

for a lot of bling and gloss I do own

some but given the choice I like to

playing ukulele and this is a plain

ukulele the downside to that satin

finish is it's quite easy for this you

to pick up singing marks scratches if

you have the bad habit like I've

sometimes do if planting your finger

when you're little yeah I've put some

little dings in it already

I've stuffed it up here from vigorous

strumming but you know I don't really

mind that's fine by me this is an

instrument it's meant to be played I

don't want to put it in a glass cabinet

and have it as a display piece what's

the point of that I play music so we

have a standard shape no bling binding

the only decoration on the top is they

transfer black white black sound hole

rosette the bridge material is a

rosewood or morado wood with a little

bit of stripe in it and a tusk

compensated saddle it looks fairly

standard at the bridge it's a tie bar

bridge but actually when you really get

into the detail of it it's really nicely

shaped rather than just a straight slot

for this saddle to fit into it's

actually a nice routed out shape smooth

down at all little slot I know that

because I took it out too low the action

really nice on to the neck we have what

Martin described as a hard wooden axe I

don't know what sort of wood it is NATO

mahogany perhaps I don't know but it's

nice it's one piece which is good to see

all the way through and it feels really

smooth it's lovely

really well shaped nicely finished quite

a bit of chunk nice profile up at a nut

albeit a very narrow not compared to

that on say my kind of layout which

which is put a much wider nut up here

but it's nice the fingerboard is topped

with morado wood which is got a nice

stripe to it as you can see the edges

aren't bound but the frets are set

perfectly well there are no no rough

edges

it all looks very neat we have tiny

finger position markers fret markers on

the uke which I don't really understand

threat markers on that part of the

ukulele facing out don't really benefit

the player at all because you don't see

them well I rely on I'm glad to see side

fret markers and thanks Martin for that

it's amazing how many manufacturers

failed to put those on instruments I

mean how much can it cost but if these

ones to me seem to be markers for people

looking at me so they recognize it as an

instrument but they're so small some

people have said they look nice and cool

and understated I believe them off

altogether if you're gonna do them

that's more up to the headstock we have

a standard Martin shape with quite a

quite an exaggerated Martin crown the

headstock is faced with a veneer of

curve and my first gripe with the

instrument the logo look this is this

isn't an expensive instrument in the big

scheme of things I'm not expecting

inlaid abalone or mother-of-pearl but

this is a it's a sticker

it's a raised sticker it reminds me of

those things that are stuck onto

greeting cards that your kids come home

from nursery with it's it's tacky I

don't understand it why they couldn't

have just gone with a gold silkscreen

print or transfer which would have

looked just wouldn't look better to be

honest I don't know

Chile's provided by grover open back

tuners these are external tuners these

really are accurate and work extremely

well they're exactly the same tune as as

on my channel a k1 the only difference

being these got white plastic buttons

the can layer have silver buttons um and

then you have it I mean it um it's it

feels right it's got a nice weight it's

nicely balanced it's well put together

there wasn't a mark on it at all it's um

it's really nicely built that neck is

attached to the body with a dovetail

joint which is quite unusual and

something Martin do with that guitar so

it's not just glued and bolted on

there's actually a channel routed out

here off the top of the body and it's

slotted in to give a better set and you

know you've got that sort of quality

throughout that's Martin bill quality

comes from many many years of making

stringed instruments the action at the

nut when it arrived for me was

absolutely perfect the nut is really

nicely finished to the saddle needed to

go down a touch but not a lot that was

just personal preference and no

complaint and actually if you're buying

an instrument of the price you really

should be prepared to have a play with

the setup if you're gonna play it

because it take it you're a serious

player if you are buying an instrument

like this it arrived with Martin teller

fluorocarbon strings now I had already

heard that this was a very bright sharp

sounding instrument and those strings

for me really did just push that a

little bit too far I always recommend

that string choice is a personal thing

you should experiment I've experimented

with several sets and settled on these

Fremont Fremont Fremont black line

fluorocarbon strings which just take the

bike down a little bit not too much it's

still a bright instrument for you well

as you can hear it

[Music]

yeah I mean in terms of comparing it to

a Hawaiian Colonel a tenor uke it's not

quite as rich but there's not a lot in

it the volumes certainly there it beats

the camera on that the camera layer

feels a little warmer there's a little

box here I mean that really sounds like

I'm doing it a disservice but you know

I'm just I'm just being honest it's a

great sound ukulele and for me it comes

absolutely highly recommended it's not a

vintage but I'm not in the market for

buying vintage Oaks and got a ukulele is

about letting people know what they can

buy off the shelf in fact does it matter

that it says Martin on it take my leg

off I mean it's an instrument it's very

well made it's got great stairs and I'd

recommend you try what I think they're I

think they're great fun and I think this

will serve you well for many years

[Music]

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Video Transcript

hi thanks for tuning in today we're

going to look at three really nice

intermediate price range

okay Lee's oscar schmidt koa wood tenor

and oscar schmidt spalted mango tenor

and an acacia wood kala tenor

so why look at three different Tenor

Ukulele is all in one review

well I found online reviews are really

helpful but the one thing that they lack

is if you're looking at certain hoops

and a certain price range you hear one

person's perspective on how they wiggle

lately looks and feels and then they

might play a little bit but what you

really want to hear is you want to hear

them play back to back to back so that

you can hear the difference between the

acacia wood sound spalted mango and koa

so the purpose of this review is to

allow you to do that so first up is this

oh you 7te spalted mango Oscars from Abu

Khalil II and I've had this for about

eight months and I have to say maybe I

just got lucky but you can see this is

beautiful every one of these is

different there's a mirror image of this

spalted mango pattern the front is

beautiful it's gloss the the fit and

finish on this one is one of the best

that I felt unless you go up into the

thousand dollar price range it's got

sealed Grover tuners ebony buttons

it came set up with a very low action so

I don't know if you can see that I'm not

going to give a measurement here but it

is in the order of precision that you're

going to find on an expensive long

ukulele this was a particularly

important for me because I actually had

a medical problem with my hand so I have

less finger strength and I had trouble

doing Barre chords on my my first two

kalila was a collar this really easy and

not just easy but precise the whole

fretboard everything about it makes

playing a joy so it also is as an

amplifier

and another nice part about that is

you've got the plug-in right here in the

rear on the back which makes it's great

for putting a strap on one of the key

sound characteristics of this spalted

mango though is it's gloss and in fact

it's very heavy it doesn't project as

well but it has a really nice sound

characteristic it's great for playing

some songs that you might hear on a

Rickenbacker guitar so here's a Beatle

song and I love that sound but if you

play the Zook in a group of people

playing moves doesn't really cut through

it so it's hard to hear it's it's not

quite as good in the category projection

as some other ones so now let's look at

this oscar schmidt with koa wood this is

the oh you 6 CLE solid koa it's it is

another gorgeous example of the oscar

schmidt philosophy it's built like a

tank similar to the other one very solid

very sturdy all the joints everything

about it is just great quality now being

that this is a satin finish the whole

instrument is a little bit lighter it

also does have an amplifier built in it

is also set up with very close action

you know which again for me is a very

good quality the sound projects a little

bit differently

and it's good but there are some

trade-offs kala acacia with the slotted

head stock if you look closely to this

you'll see there's actually in the

slotted head stock you can see there's

kind of layers of wood there exposed

there this great pattern and thread

board it's a little bit thinner it's a

little bit lighter than the Oscar

Smith's and it comes actually with the

action was much higher but after I

learned that I liked the low action I

act this one set up did not buy it

online it wasn't available locally but I

special-ordered it in a music store with

a guitar tech who could bring the action

down so that it would be what feels good

to me and that was worth it it actually

could have bought it for $25 or so

cheaper online but you know support your

local music store satin case ukulele has

an amazing tone

unfortunately no amplification and it's

a bummer because I have played this

enjoy playing it when groups you can

keep in here it's a great tone if you're

playing on stage and you have a mic

though it does not cut through as well

as if you have an amp but to take a

listen to the sound

I mean it just has this kind of built

like ringing to it this tone is just

wonderful

and now we're going to listen to all

three side by side

you

you

one more thing I almost forgot something

very important about the difference in

playability between a kala and an oscar

schmidt so this looks unscientific but

we're going to take an index card and

we're going to wrap it around at the

fifth fret from one side of the

fretboard to the other we do that for

both the kala and the oscar schmidt and

you're going to find out there's

actually a significant difference and

the measurement I have here is that it's

about three and six 3/16 inch bigger and

that does make a difference so I have

large hands and for me it just feels

better it makes it more playable if you

go from you know a chord like an A and

try to jump to a barre chord and you're

jumping around you know even with some

good technique and your thumb on the

back having less neck to grab on to when

this little bit less girthy product the

kala makes makes it a little less stable

and you measure the distance across the

strings at the top of the neck just

showing for effect here but I measured

carefully from the top and and just as

the neck meets the body I did that for

both kala and oscar schmidt and the

difference is also significant the top

of the neck that kala is one in three

thirty-seconds the distance between the

strings and the oscar schmidt is

actually one in five thirty seconds

which is 1/16 of an inch difference

sounds small actually you can definitely

feel that there's definitely more space

between the strings up there and down at

the bottom of the neck as it reaches the

body the difference is even more

pronounced I have three sixteenths of an

inch difference between these two models

so bear in mind this is not a scratch

made make some wide neck versions this

is not this as standard it's the same on

both of the Oscar Schmidt's that were

shown in this review so it's just

something to keep in mind which one will

feel better in your hands most likely if

you have larger hands this Austria

Schmidt's going to feel better but it's

subjective so I'm suggesting that

if at all possible you put your hands on

the hook and a local music store and

make sure that you have those the feel

and the sound that you want good luck

with your book purchase and keep

strumming

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