How to Choose a Good Beginner Ukulele?
Whether or not you’re a complete newbie eager to study a brand new instrument, a musician trying to branch out, or a ukulele fanatic, there are an enormous number of instruments available on the market and their reputation appears to keep on rising!
This is an instrument that we want to play all the time. No matter if we are at parties, on a beach, or in a secluded setting, the ukulele is a friends-friendly instrument
The best beginner ukuleles can be found in all sizes; concert ukulele, soprano ukulele, or tenor ukulele, but what is important is that you will be able to find your entry-level ukulele in all these sizes.
From its easy-to-handle size to its comfortable sound, the ukulele is just an enjoyable instrument to play. And in comparison with the guitar, it’s pretty simple to learn.
Ukuleles only have 4 strings, and the narrower neck makes chord modifications simpler and smoother. Geared tuners are crucial for the sound of the strings and you will be able to find one on the best budget you have.
The more fundamental and often used chords are additionally positioned within the first 5 frets, and you may play a complete bunch of popular songs on the ukulele with only a handful of simple chords.
This makes the ukulele an excellent instrument for starting musicians. Whereas different instruments could require some kind of formal coaching, the ukulele doesn’t need a lot to make it sound good.
Even simply strumming a couple of easy chords on a ukulele is fun and awesome. The punchy tones of the ukulele ensure that any track, no matter method, sounds entertaining at the very least.
There are various different sizes, varieties, and types of ukuleles on the market, so what’s the best ukulele for beginners? Well, when you’ve got smaller hands, you need to undoubtedly go for the soprano ukes.
Soprano ukes have a great tone and you can find one on the budget as well. Not to forget that the build quality also influences the tone, meaning that you are in a win-win situation.
There is a wide range of best beginner ukuleles that you can choose from, making this instrument very affordable for everyone.
Folks with very giant hands most likely find a tenor to be a better match. Concert-sized ukes are a contented medium.
We often swap between a soprano and concert dimension, because we discover tenors to be too bulky and the broader frets mean we have to stretch our fingers more than we need.
For starters, the budget can play an important role in picking our uke, but the price doesn’t mean that we will have a bad ukulele. Let’s check our 2 cents on this topic.
Choose a Price Range
We believe a budget of $50 to $100 is good for many beginners. For example, the Duc 1 from Donner is around 50-60$ and it is a good unit for all beginners.
We suggest to start looking into this range and find your best pick (if Duc 1 is not your choice). There are a bunch of units in this range that you can pick from, so you just need to set your preferences and start eliminating the units that you don’t like.
The process of elimination is checked one and most used by us when it comes to picking whatever gear we want to purchase, ukuleles included. When you are at the beginner’s stage, this process will come in handy when picking.
In our expertise, most ukes within the $50 to $100 range are moderately well-made instruments that sound good and are comfy to play. You possibly can actually spend extra, however, it’s not essential to get a good beginner ukulele.
These are instruments that you may play for a very long time without feeling like you must improve. Plus, if you ever transfer to a costlier ukulele, your previous ukulele will make an ideal backup for camping, journey, or loaning to buddies.
What to Count on if You Spend Extra?
What’s the good thing about spending a bit more on your first uke? There’s not a single reply to this question, however as you raise your price range, the picking range for the best ukuleles for beginners rises as well. Here is what you can get more:
- Better total craftsmanship and playability
- Fancy beauty options like binding, inlays, and rosettes
- Unique woods and materials
- Strong wooden top, back, and sides (for improved tone)
- Magnets to play through an amp
At a certain value point, you’ll end up in the realm of high-end, US-made ukuleles from brands like Martin or Kala Ka.
These are some of the finest ukes money can purchase, however they’re significantly costlier than mass-produced import merchandise. That’s why they have one of the best ukuleles on the market.
Keep away from Really Cheap Ukuleles
We know it’s tempting to save lots of cash and purchase a ukulele for $25 or $30 online. In any case, these low-cost ukes typically don’t look very different than costlier ukes, particularly in online images.
The thing is that these are not even good beginner ukuleles, so our suggestion is to stay away from these models.
The very cheap ukuleles most of the time are plastic and produce low-quality tones, which is counterproductive for both playing and recording.
When faced against a studio microphone, these types of ukuleles will embed their “plasticity” into the recording, and an experienced ear will be able to recognize such low-quality uke.
That’s why we are fans of mahogany units that sound great for the price. They can produce this wooden feel in the sound and will resonate properly as every ukulele should.
You can find a Cordoba or Kala one in the low price range that will have mahogany wood in them. For us, this is a feature that we love on every ukulele – a wooden body that will give great resonance.
If you are at the point of choosing from the whole bunch of beginner ukuleles, we have a few suggestions in our top 9 picks article.
We mentioned great ukuleles for beginners, such as the Kala Ka 15S, Cordoba 15cm Concert Ukulele and many more. Also, you can first select the size of your ukulele and also we listed all 4 of them (concert ukulele, tenor ukulele, soprano ukulele, and a baritone ukulele).
Quality Issues With Low-cost Ukes
Sadly, ukes on this worth range are more likely to have severe issues that may have an effect on tone and make them hard to play.
In our opinion, many very low-cost ukes barely qualify as actual instruments. And, the cheaper they’re, the higher the possibility you’ll run into problems.
They are not having even the basic accessories with the instrument, such as a spare set of strings, gig bag, clip-on tuner, etc.
The second factor that it’s good to take into account is the ukulele brand. You may search online and search for the “greatest ukulele for newbies”.
Google will present you with the top ukulele evaluations. What it’s good to find out are these ukulele brands that have good units.
You may as well verify ukulele reviews on Youtube. Most YouTubers check the merchandise themselves and present them in their videos.
So principally, you’ll get a glimpse of how the ukulele sounds and the way it would sound like. You get the feel of the dimensions and efficiency by simply looking at the videos.
One of the most vital widespread manufacturers right now could be the Kala Ka ukulele or Cordoba 15cm. It’s a bang for the buck. We are not endorsing these ukuleles that we mentioned.
It’s simply our remark. You still need to seek out out yourself which one suits your style. One sure thing is that the costlier they are, the better the ukuleles. All beginners should have this in mind when starting out.
Which Size is Finest for Ukulele for Beginners?
We believe any of these sizes are nice for a newbie. However, we personally want the bigger concert and tenor model sizes. We believe their richer tone and ease of playability make them a really perfect start line for many beginners.
Yet, we don’t wish to create the impression that sopranos aren’t good. Many of us love the soprano for its compact dimension and vivid, sparkly tone. The soprano ukulele is additionally cheaper than both concert and tenor ukulele.
After all, you should be looking for the one that will suit you the best, no matter if it is an entry-level one or a good ukulele instrument.
If you are at the beginners’ stage, seek guidance online or from your retailer – probably they will have the answers needed for you.
The ukulele for beginners should be a ukulele that has all the important accessories with it. We really appreciate an extra set of strings and gig bags in the bundle.
This really makes us happy because we will be prepared for the road. Also, a tuner will be great to tune the tone of the strings.
The important thing is to enjoy the instrument and to play the ukulele. The quality of it is important as well, for both playability and tone, but also the budget/price that this uke will have.
Don’t Obsess Over Finding the “Best” Dimension
Whereas it’s good to have a fundamental understanding of ukulele sizes, it’s vital not to obsess over selecting the “proper” dimension. Do some analysis, get a uke, and begin playing!
It’s additionally worth mentioning that many players have a number of ukes of various sizes. When you fall in love with the ukulele, you’ll most likely end up wanting to increase your assortment to incorporate ukes of all sizes.
As we mentioned earlier, you need to be sure that your ukulele suits your best budget, has great sound and build quality, and maybe a spare set of strings (such as Aquila nylgut strings that are great for every ukulele for beginners).
All sizes of ukuleles are good to start out, you just need to follow your preference and you will be good. For beginners it is important to follow the price and the quality of the instrument, everything else is coming extra, like the mahogany top back and sides, or the nylon or metal strings.
Does The Wood Have an Effect on How The Ukulele Sounds?
Mainly, you’ll be able to say that there are two forms of wood used to make ukuleles: solid wood and laminate wood. And you could have already known the variations between them.
After all, ukuleles made out of strong wood are nice, but it doesn’t imply that solid wood is at all times good and laminate wood is at all times bad. It depends upon the standard of the wood.
Thus, a well-made, laminate-wood ukulele can sound better than a poorly-made solid one.
That’s the explanation why you must take into account shopping for ukulele from trusted sellers. You don’t want the “fancy look”, the actual thing is the work they put into it.
As well as, a lot of the beginner ukuleles will cost you around $100, and that’s for laminate-wood ukuleles. If you are searching for premium, solid-wood ones, you’ll need to spend a minimum of $300.
When we say premium, we mean ukuleles that have the good build quality and are in the price range you set + that include features like a mahogany top and mahogany body, rosewood fingerboard/walnut fingerboard, and/or have satin finish.
Another feature is the abalone rosette. The abalone rosette is just a cosmetic, but some players favor this. Most importantly is the mahogany top back and sides and good quality strings.
Another cosmetic stuff that you can look after is some “tattoos” that these ukuleles have. The Luna Tattoo Concert Size Ukulele has a very nice top finish.
Again, this is not something that every best beginner ukulele should have, these are all personal preferences that you can go after. This doesn’t mean that Kala Ka 15s, for example, is not a great ukulele.
Getting your first ukulele is kind of thrilling. However, it’s important to do the correct analysis before making a purchase order. Usually, new players will do well by beginning with a uke that matches their hand size and price range.
Accessories/features like gig bag or mahogany back and sides are a nice addition to beginner ukes. We are very thrilled when we have some extra stuff with the basic uke purchase.
Though it’s possible you’ll feel very keen to purchase your first ukulele, it pays to be very cautious when making a call on which brand and model you select. Once again, check the Cordoba 15cm, Kala Ka 15s, or the Luna Tattoo one.
No matter what you choose, all these mentioned ukuleles are great for beginners. What comes into play as well is that all of them have great sound and quality, which makes the ukulele the best pick for both kids and adults.
Ukulele is a really user-friendly musical instrument. You may learn to play it in only a matter of days. Our recommendation is to join the community and be one with tens of thousands of individuals worldwide who enjoy playing this excellent instrument.
Ultimately, choosing the proper ukulele is about discovering the one which works for you; a ukulele that’s enjoyable to play and listen to. We have a nice list of the best beginner ukuleles in other articles on our website, that are here to guide you.
So although you now know more about how ukuleles are constructed and what materials go into them, let your fingers and ears lead you to the best uke.
From concert ukulele with mahogany body or rosewood fingerboard to soprano instrument in concert size, we believe that whatever you choose in the price range below 100$, you won’t be mistaken.
This is all a personal preference when choosing and picking from the best ukuleles for beginners – so many choices and yet we will need to stick with one or two for starters.
Even if it is Donner concert ukulele from Walmart, it is important that you show interest in the instrument.
We wish you a nice journey to buying the best ukulele for beginners and we now believe that you have the needed confidence to make this decision on your own.
In this video, there is a selection of good beginner ukuleles – check it out!