Ukulele Buyer’s Guide

Hooray — you’ve decided to purchase a ukulele!  Congrats on choosing an instrument that is easy to shop for, affordable, and super fun to play.  Maybe you are ready to start your ukulele lessons at Boise Music Lessons, looking to add a new instrument to your music corner, or give a ukulele as a gift. No matter the reason, we think adding more music into your life is always a good thing, and we’re happy to help you find the perfect instrument! Read on for our curated list of ukulele recommendations.*

Ukulele  Size

Ukuleles come in four standard sizes: soprano, concert (alto), tenor, and baritone.  The smallest of the gang, the soprano, is the most common and will give you the signature sweet, plucky sound we associate with the instrument.  Soprano ukuleles are perfect for players with small hands, or for those who want a portable travel instrument.

Concert ukuleles and tenor ukuleles are tuned the same as a soprano ukulele, but are progressively larger in size.  They are great for players with bigger hands or for those who want a fuller sound and greater projection.

Baritone ukuleles are tuned like the high four strings of a guitar.  While also fun to play, these instruments are often more of a secondary instrument.  If you’re looking to learn the ukulele or purchase one as a gift, we recommend you start with a soprano, concert, or tenor ukulele in standard tuning.

Ukulele Materials

Ukuleles come in a rainbow of woods and even plastics.  Pick the right ukulele for you based on sound and durability.  A plastic ukulele is a great choice for a kid’s first instrument, or to take camping/boating.  Wood laminate ukuleles are also durable with a great sound.   Solid-top wood ukuleles are often thought to have the best tone, but tone vastly varies by wood type, instrument brand, and personal perception.  Get out there and start strumming to see what you like best!

We’ve included some recommendations below to give you an idea of some reputable brands to look for on your quest.  Your local music shop will have a variety of awesome instruments for you to choose from.  If you’re looking for a ukulele in the Boise area, we love Eagle Guitar for instrument shopping and The Better Fret for set-ups, tune-ups, and repairs.

Soprano Ukuleles

Makala Waterman Soprano Ukulele

Luna UKE VSS Spruce Soprano Ukulele

Kala KA-S Soprano Mahogany Ukulele

Concert Ukuleles

Makala Waterman Concert Ukulele

Donner DUC-1 Concert Ukulele

Cordoba 15CM Concert Ukulele

Tenor Ukuleles

Makanu Mahogany Tenor Ukulele

Donner DUT-1 Tenor Ukulele

Cordoba 15TM Tenor Ukulele


Now that you’ve found your perfect ukulele, outfit it with all the necessities.

Case — go for either a hard shell or at least a padded soft case to protect your beloved ukulele.

ChromaCast Ukulele Gig Bag

Strings — throw an extra set in your case so you’ll never be caught unprepared!

Martin M600 Soprano/Concert Ukulele Strings

Tuner — Your phone app will work in a pinch, but a dedicated tuner will be more accurate. The clip-on kind will only pick up the vibrations from you instrument, which makes playing in a group even easier!

Snark ST-8 All Instrument Tuner

Build Your Music Corner

Create a safe and comfortable space to leave your instrument out and find your groove!

Instrument Stand — a visible instrument is a played instrument!  Display your ukulele on the wall or on a sturdy floor stand for an invitation to play, and for a beautiful conversation piece.

Top Stage Ukulele Hanger

Ukulele Floor Stand

Music Stand — find something nice and robust to hold up heavy books and a metronome/cell phone.  Bonus points if you have a place to store pencils and highlighters, a stand light, fingernail clippers, and some clothes pins to keep your books open!

Manhasset Music Stand

Adjustable Foot Rest — you will play more if you are comfortable.  Prioritize ergonomics and practice with a foot rest to bring your instrument the perfect hight.

Neewer Foot Rest

Still have questions about buying a ukulele?  Email us!  Ready to play some music?  Learn more!

*Boise Music Lessons is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to  Amazon offers a small commission on any products purchased through affiliate links at no additional cost to you.  Your purchases help support our work in bringing you quality music resources beyond in-person instruction.