A properly set up ukulele should not have fret ends extending beyond the neck of the instrument. It should be smooth and pleasurable to slide your hand/fingers up and down the fretboard. If this isn’t the case, the ukulele has likely undergone a change in climate, especially humidity.
Sharp Frets Sticking Out
Since Ohana ukuleles are set up prior to shipping to our Authorized Dealers, this should not be an issue for any of the suggested ‘starter’ ukuleles below.
No Sharp Frets
SK-10 Colors The Soprano Color Pop Series features hues from yellow, to neon blue, to lavender. These ukuleles are a soprano size scale, so they may not suit those with larger hands/long fingers.
SK/CK/TK-10 Our standard student model is an affordable way to get playing, regardless of which scale length best suits your playing style. Geared tuners make getting in tune an easy fix, and Aquila strings keep the pitch true.
SK/CK/TK-14/14E This is my top pick for a beginner’s ukulele! The laminate build allows it to be sturdy enough for a classroom setting, but the finish and binding make for a sharper looking uke. I especially like the darker, more saturated finish on the 14 series, and love that they are available with a passive pick up, too.
CK-14CL I would alsohighly recommend the Cynthia Lin model, based on our CK-14. These ukuleles are packed with valuable added features like upgraded strings and fret position markers. Each ukulele purchased helps directly benefit artist Cynthia Lin.
SK/CK/TK-20/22 Maybe you’ve played other stringed instruments before. Maybe, you just like the tone of a solid top, and have it within your budget. Ohana’s -20 and -22 series are a budget friendly way to get a bit more tone and sustain from your ukulele.
SK/CK-25 This will be as high as I dip for suggestions for beginners! Ohana’s -25 series is an all solid mahogany model with no binding and a satin finish. The solid build will become more resonate as you play the instrument and ‘loosen up’ the soundboard. Because of their all solid built, the -25 series ukuleles are best kept in a case with a humidifier if you live in a changing climate. They are a real steal for an all solid mahogany build ukulele, especially as they’ve been set up and quality inspected in Long Beach!
Really, I think the most important thing is to play regularly, and have a good time. The whole idea and feeling behind the ukulele is community and joy. Pick a ukulele that feels right in your hands, and makes you want to play. Pick an instrument that brings you joy to hold and hear, the investment will return exponentially. - Steph
"Stephanie Snell has worked at Ohana HQ since 2010. You'll find her preparing shipments, answering customer questions, and convincing Lola, the office dog, to do most of her work. Being asked "Which ukulele sounds the best?" on multiple occasions inspired this post."
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