One of the main reasons for the Ukulele’s popularity is its price.
A cheap Ukulele is still an instrument you can learn to play relatively quickly, and also give you a lot of fun.
The ukulele has been developed and improved over the years, and different materials have been tried out to find the best sound. Today, you can find ukuleles in all price ranges. Many people buy cheap ukuleles as a starting instrument or to check whether they like the instrument or not. However, it is important to note that cheap ukuleles may not have the best sound quality and may not be as durable as more expensive models. It is generally recommended that you invest in a higher-quality ukulele if you plan on playing regularly or performing.
The Ukulele prices
A cheap Standard Soprano Ukulele can cost about 20 to 30 $. You also might find them for a lower price. The price often reflect the quality, but it can be OK to start with a low-priced Ukulele so you can try it out. Later on, you can buy a more expensive when you have found out that this really is the instrument for you. And you will probably come to that point! By the way, many Ukulele players have several 🙂
You can of course find a good cheap Soprano/Standard Ukulele, that most people buy. Even a cheap Concert Ukulele, a Tenor Ukulele or a low priced acoustic/electric Ukulele. If it is not provided with a bag or case, you can also find a cheap ukulele case/gig bag for sale.
Here you have a link to Amazon for cheap ukulele.
Another place for buying cheap ukulele is AliExpress.
The Ukulele materials
You must also remember that there is a difference in the sound if the ukulele is made of laminate or real wood. Real wood ukuleles are normally more expensive. The type of wood, mahogany, rosewood or whatever, also has an impact on the sound.
Here’s a $20 Ukulele vs $1000 Ukulele Comparison
The reason why some ukuleles are low-priced is that they are made of low-quality materials. The strings, wood, tuning pegs, bridge, and other parts may be cheap or poorly made. The instrument may also be produced in a country with low labor costs. However, this does not mean that they are unplayable or not enjoyable.
There is nothing wrong with buying a cheap ukulele!
A low-priced Ukulele can be fine, but the strings are often also cheap, and perhaps of poor quality, as mentioned above. If you change the strings to a better quality, the cheap Ukulele can be quite OK and an instrument you can have a lot of fun with for years.
If you have a standard Ukulele you can decide whether you want it C or D tuned. For a beginner we would recommend a C tuning as we think it is easier to play and it is the most common these days.
If you’re lucky, and you might be, the strings on a cheap ukulele can be good enough that you won’t need to change them. However, some recommend that you change your ukulele strings every 6 to 12 months for sporadic players, every 1 to 3 months for daily and heavy players, and every few weeks for professional players. We think it depends on your playing style besides the string type and quality. So, may be this advice is somewhat exaggerated. It might be normal that you should change strings a couple of times a year if you play a lot . A drop in sound quality (the intonation drops), physical damage, and loss of tuning stability are all signs that a string change is needed. You can hear it or feel it on the underside of the strings. (From the post about strings.)
In addition, we would like to mention that if there is a bzz sound when you play one, or more, of the strings, you can correct this by placing something under the saddle so that the strings do not hit the fretboard when they vibrate. Loosen the strings, put something thin under the saddle and tighten and tune the ukulele.
Lowering the strings/Adjust the Action
The action, or the distance between the strings and the fretboard, can affect the playability of the ukulele. If the action is too high, it can be difficult to press the strings down. You can lower the action by adjusting the bridge and the nut.
If you want to lower the ukulele strings closer to the fretboard, be careful. You must not to lower them too much and get a buzzing sound. However, the height over the fretboard and the bottom of the string in the 12th fret should be between 0.093 inches (about 2.2mm) and 0.125 inches (about 3mm). Read more about in the post about Ukulele Setup and Improvements.
Tighten the Tuners: If your ukulele goes out of tune quickly, it might be due to loose tuners. Tightening the screws on the tuners can help keep the ukulele in tune.
If the ukulele pegs/tuners are a problem, you can buy new ones and replace the original. This is a relatively simple process that can be done with a few basic tools. (Take a look at the ad under the picture.)
Read more in our post about Ukulele setup. The post is also about strap buttons, pegs, and making a electric/acoustic ukulele with a tuner of your acoustic instrument.
For tips to improve your cheap Ukulele you also can read this post from Instructables.com. On the link you can read about changing strings, how to oil the ukulele and tuning.
How to put on new strings
For how to add new strings, you can read about it, and watch the video in the artice about Ukulele Strings.
Here you have some more videos in addition to the one on the link..
If you want a left-handed Ukulele, just put the strings on in reverse order, or you can buy a dedicated left-handed Ukulele. Read our post about left-handed Ukulele.
Remember, while these modifications can improve a cheap ukulele, they won’t turn it into a high-end instrument. However, they can make your ukulele more enjoyable to play and practice with. Happy strumming!
What about making a 8-Strings Ukulele?
Enjoy your Ukulele!
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Finally, Basic Ukulele was founded in 2015 with the aim of making it easier for anyone who wants to learn or find out more about this wonderful instrument.