You’ve decided to play the Ukulele, and now you are looking to purchase your first one. You’ve read Ukulele For Beginnersand know what size ukulele you want. Now the question is what brand of ukulele should you purchase. There are a lot of ukulele brands, and as a beginner, knowing which ones are good can be difficult. This article should should help.
Once again I should start out by saying that how serious you are about playing the ukulele will decide which ukulele brands you should consider. As I mentioned earlier you shouldn’t go for the very bottom range.
However, while I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it, you could go for the higher end and spend hundreds or thousands of dollars. Since this is a site about Ukulele For Beginners, I will be focusing on ukulele brands that are good for beginners. This means I will be focused on the lower-middle range. Some of the most common ukulele brands for beginners are Honu, Kala, Lanikai, Makai, and OscarSchmidt.
Honu Ukuleles– Is actually a brand of the Big Island Ukulele Company. A relatively new company that states their goal is to offer some of the best ukuleles in the segments they sell in.
Kala Ukuleles– A California based company that specializes in producing quality, but affordable ukuleles. The company was started by Mike Upton, a Hawaiian representative for a large music company who felt there weren’t many options for good, affordable ukuleles.
Lanikai Ukuleles– A branch of the Hohner music company, Lanikai initially started making ukuleles on the low end of the scale. However, over the years they their quality has improved and they now make decent ukuleles for beginners in the mid range.
Makai Ukuleles– Another ukulele brand in the mid range, that produces quality ukuleles at pretty good prices.
Oscar Schmidt Ukuleles– Oscar Schmidt has been in the music business since the late 1800s and they know what they are doing. However, they tend to be a little more expensive.
All of these companies offer decent ukuleles at decent prices. Depending on the size that you want (soprano: 20-21 inches, concert: 23”, tenor: 26-27”, baritone: 30+”) the prices will vary from about $50 to $300. It all depends on how much you want to spend. But, like anything else, someplace in the middle ($100-$150) is usually a good balance of cost, performance and quality.
If you want to find even more information about the different ukulele brands, please check out the link to wikipedia below. But be careful, there are a lot of brands and it can be a bit overwhelming. This lists includes several Japanese Ukulele brands as well as various others from around the world. Ukulele wikipedia.
Also, please leave comments with your reviews and recommendations about what ukuleles you like and why.