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How To Choose Ukulele In Malaysia [Mato Music Ukulele Buying Guide]

How To Choose Ukulele In Malaysia [Mato Music Ukulele Buying Guide]

Introduction: When you think of the ukulele, you think of the cute, easy to play, happy mood, and a good choice to start learning music instrument. You can see it in many music stores even shopping mall.

Finding the right ukulele for you can be quite difficult quest. There are all these different sizes, woods, types and brands out there on the market but it can and will be very rewarding when you find the right one.

This article write for beginner and ukulele player who intention to upgrade ukulele. And all of you who want to use the ukulele for actually making music are invited to browse through this article. I'm here wishes you get an idea while reading.


How To Choose Ukulele In Malaysia [Mato Music Ukulele Buying Guide]


p/s: estimate reading time 10-15 minutes, save this page if you can not finish reading this time.


9 Part To Go In This Article

1 of 9

Ukulele Story Time

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In the 1880's, the ukulele is based on several small guitar-like instruments of Portuguese origin.

Most important factors in establishing the ukulele in Hawaiian music and culture was the ardent support and promotion of the instrument by King of the Hawaiian Islands.

The ukulele came to Japan in 1929 after Hawaiian-born Yukihiko Haida returned to the country introduced the Ukulele.

During World War II, authorities banned most Western music, but fans and players kept it alive in secret, and it resumed popularity after the war. In 1959, Haida founded the Nihon Ukulele Association.

Today, Japan is considered a second home for Hawaiian musicians and ukulele grand master.

Ukulele also becomes famous in Malaysia. That’s why you are reading this article. it's mean we can learn more info about ukulele together.

Some years later, the first ukuleles were built from the wood of the local koa tree.



2 of 9

The parts of the ukulele

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Ukulele Head - Machine Head

A machine head (also referred to as a tuning machine, tuner, or gear head) is a geared apparatus for tuning stringed musical instruments by adjusting string tension.

Ukulele Head - Nut

The nut marks one end of the vibrating length of each open string, sets the spacing of the strings across the neck, and usually holds the strings at the proper height from the fingerboard.

Ukulele Neck - Fret

Frets usually extend across the full width of the neck. frets are metal strips inserted into the fingerboard.

Ukulele Neck - Fretboard

When you’re playing your ukulele, you press the strings down against the fretboard to produce notes.

Ukulele Body - Top

The Body Top is the most important part, which is why you often see ukuleles with expensive woods used for the top and less expensive wood.

Ukulele Body - Bridge

The bridge is attached to the front of the ukulele and holds the strings at the bottom end.

Ukulele Body - Saddle

The saddle is the thin, usually white, piece that sticks up out of the bridge. The strings rest on top of the saddle.

Top wood

Usually solid wood fares better as a top wood, although there are some high-quality laminates which do a good job and which are becoming more and more popular thanks mainly to their striking looks.

3 of 9

Scale length and size and 3 types of ukulele

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Soprano (20 inches)

Certainly, playing a soprano ukulele is somewhat more difficult because of how narrowly its frets are spaced. There are a lot of newbie not shy away from soprano even if they have never held a ukulele.

The soprano model is the common size. The scale length measures about 35cm and the strings are tuned to G-C-E-A-. Let’s become beach boy or girl because it’s characteristic sound will automatically transport you to white sandy beaches.

Concert (23 inches)

Concert: The concert size affords the player some more space for the fingers and its volume is also greater than that of the soprano. Honestly, I suggest beginner buy Concert size ukulele to start learning ukulele.



Concert ukuleles are also tuned to G-C-E-A and feature a scale length of about 38.5cm. They are a very convenient compromise between the soprano ukulele with its higher notes and the tenor ukulele which is easier to play.

Tenor (26 inches)

Tenor: Tenor ukuleles possess a loud volume and are easier for learners thanks to their greater scale length. Because some time you need clip the capo to change key. Due to larger size body, sound tone also warmer. Highly recommend adult to use it to start or upgrade from concert size.

The tenor ukulele can be as long as 43cm and is also tuned to G-C-E-A. With its extended bass range, this is a good complement in a ukulele duo or trio. Yes, let’s jam with friend who using concert size or soprano. perfect match playing together. 

4 of 9

Laminate top or solid wood top

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The most important material in the construction of a ukulele is the wood. For lower priced ukulele an important question is whether the top and the body of the ukulele are made from solid wood or laminate.

Laminated wood instruments in particular may sound not tight as solid wood, less sustain and sound thin a bit. Some of manufacturers use a top-quality laminate even for their budget lines which sounds better thanks to its superior structure.

Solid top: Solid top means that the top is made from single pieces of wood. Quality sound warmer, long sustain and loud/solid than laminated top. Naturally, fully solid (solid neck, side back) instruments are the best choice. (But really high price)



5 of 9

Ukulele Made By Wood

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Hard solid wood is advised for back and ribs. Depending on the desired sound, harder or softer solid wood may be used for the top. Ukuleles made in Hawaii are usually made of solid mahogany or koa.


Koa

One of typical Ukulele tonewood which only grows on Hawaii.
This wood type is known for its delicate, warm and open sound. Koa instruments sound very soft yet, if of good quality, distinct and clear at the same time

Mahogony

This is popular and frequently used tonewood. Currently solid-wood koa and mahogany ukuleles make up most of the premium range. Good mahogany sounds warm and clear, much like koa. In comparison, mahogany is more direct and focus the mid range sound frequency.

Spruce

Often used in instrument-making and is a good topwood for acoustic guitars and ukuleles. Spruce tops are characteristic by their ebullient, brilliant and assertive sound. As it is a little softer, the sound has the opportunity to develop further and improve.


Extended ReadingUkulele Tauro TR52 Review CLICK HERE



6 of 9 

Ukulele string I using now

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What type of string is best suiting your ukulele? There’s no one answer.

Two ukuleles will respond differently to the same type of strings.

The key to finding the right set to match your instrument and playing style is to experiment.

For my experiment result:

Nylgut / Nyltech strings are artificial gut strings which achieve a good natural sound. They also have the same density and are the most frequently used strings globally.



7 of 9

Ukulele Pickups

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Vocalists need a microphone to sing on stage. Ukulele too!

Ukuleles are usually provided with piezoelectric pickups, which feature send vibration signal to amplifier. And this feature allows you plug in to sound card devices and record down song you play. Or maybe need to plug in amplifier to get huge sound for stage performs.

There are active and passive piezo pickups (support by battery or didn’t)

The preamp featured in active systems is often provided extra control. Example, most preamps feature an active equalizer (bass, mid, treble) which is an effects device which affects the frequency response and is mainly used to control the sound. Rib preamps often feature an integrated tuner.

8 of 9

Ukulele Playing Posture, sitting and standing

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The ukulele is played sitting down or standing up, depending on what best suits the song. Sitting down is more comfortable for extended practice.

As with all instruments, your posture should be comfortable and relaxed. As soon as you feel your grip is secure and comfortable, you should try playing standing up. And try using ukulele strap to hanging your ukulele.

The left hand gently presses down on the strings for the chords while the right plays the strings using either the wrist for a more dynamic or the fingers for a more delicate response.

Ukulele grand masters now days you shouldn’t miss

Don’t miss this two Ukulele grand masters, because they are helped our minuscule instrument gain the popularity it enjoys today.
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The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain
 Learn More About The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain CLICK HERE
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Jake Shimabukuro 
 Learn More About Jake Shimabukuro CLICK HERE

9 of 9

Take care of your Ukulele

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Don’t leave a Ukulele on a rack for months without picking it up and expect it to play properly. Store your ukulele in cases or gig bags to keep dust.

To clean the surface, you do not need to use chemicals but maybe use a oil treatment for instrument wood (for unfinished surface ukulele). It makes most sense to wipe the surface with a damp microfibre cloth.



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Author:Mato Wai

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I believe music make our life better.
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