I’m hearing from quite a few folks that they are considering getting a ukulele for Christmas! This is great!
If you are considering a ukulele for Christmas, this post will be perfect for you. I want to take a look at some things you need to consider and then some really great ukuleles out there.
Keep reading, but you’ll definitely want to make sure you’ve checked out my post on the 5 Best Ukuleles to Buy for Beginners.
The Biggest Thing You Need To Consider
Here’s the deal. The sky is pretty much the limit when it comes to ukuleles. This is why it is important to set yourself a budget. This budget will help you narrow your options. My guess is you are just starting out or this is a Christmas gift for someone you don’t want to spend a ton. The good news is that you can get a really decent and playable uke from $50 – $100. Anything cheaper, I would be careful, unless however, you are buying a Makala Dolphin ukulele.
What’s the Best Ukulele for You?
There are a few different sizes of ukuleles: soprano (smallest), concert, tenor, and baritone (largest). Soprano ukes are the most common ukuleles and are usually the cheapest. Concert and tenor ukuleles are a little bit bigger and are great for those with slightly larger fingers.
Disclaimer: All of these ukuleles, I recommend based on my research. I have not played all these ukuleles, but I can recommend them based on what I’ve heard from trusted ukulele players and reviews. My recommendation with anything is to take a look at what you might like. If you just don’t know, these are excellent ukes or at least excellent places to start. These are just ideas and suggestions.
Ukuleles from $49 – $100
Lanikai LU-11 Soprano Ukulele – $49 – This will be your standard, soprano ukulele. As far as cheaper ukuleles go, this one gets great reviews. It even comes with a free instructional book to get started (be sure to download my free lesson book too). This will be the smallest uke you can buy, so if you have larger fingers, you might want to consider the next one.
Lanikai LU-21c Concert Ukulele – $89 – This is a concert ukulele so it will be slightly larger than a soprano. The fretboard will be a bit longer which means you can play chords higher up on the neck easier. If you have larger fingers, it could be easier to play a concert uke. The sound is also a bit warmer than the jangly sound of a soprano ukulele.
Oscar Schmidt OU13 Soprano Ukulele – $99 – With it being more expensive, this soprano uke will probably be made with a little bit more quality than the Lanikai LU-11, however, if you are just beginning, it might be really hard to pick up on these differences.
Ukuleles from $101 – $200
Lanikai LU-21T Tenor Ukulele – $115 – Tenor ukuleles are the next step in size from a concert ukulele. I have a tenor ukulele and I love the extra room on the fretboard and the warmer tone. The Lanikai LU-21T would be a great tenor uke if you are on a budget.
Silver Creek Solid Soprano Ukulele – $149 – This is a step up from cheaper soprano laminate made ukes. The top, sides, and back are made out of solid mahogany and a one-piece mahogany neck. This should provide a pretty noticeable difference in tonal quality compared to cheaper soprano ukuleles.
Fender Nohea Koa Tenor Ukulele – $199 – This uke is made out of all Koa, a wood that is from Hawaii and typically used in ukuleles because of its bright, clear tonal characteristics.
Ukuleles $201 and up
Martin 0XK Soprano Ukulele – $279 – My grandpa owns this ukulele, and it’s one of the nicest ukuleles I’ve ever played. If you know anything about guitars, you know Martin makes some of the best guitars on the planet, and so it’s only reasonable that fine craftsmanship would be present in their ukuleles. This ukulele has excellent definition and clarity and feels great in your hands.
Lanikai NK-C Natural Koa Concert Ukulele – $299 – This is a solid Hawaiian Koa top, back, and sides with a flamed maple neck. Visually, this ukulele looks very impressive and beautiful to play.
Martin Cherry Soprano Ukulele – $1499 – Alright, so this is probably out of the budget for Christmas, but one can dream right? It’s constructed from 100% environmentally sustainable, certified wood that includes cherry top, back, sides, neck and blocks, basswood linings and braces, a katalox fingerboard and bridge and a maple bridge plate. Any takers?
Again, this is just to get some ideas going. What ukulele would you recommend to a friend? Let’s hear your comments.