- Easy to use electronics
- Durable, functional hardware
- Tuning issues (just like with most ukuleles but it goes away after the break-in period)
- A little expensive for beginner ukuleles
Kala has pretty much any kind of ukulele you can imagine. They cater to professionals, intermediates and novices. They have acoustic, acoustic-electric ukes of all sizes and likings. Through years of experience, the company managed to figure out a way to deliver quality products at a good price. That is especially important when it comes to beginner/entry-level ukuleles. Makala Series is probably one of the best classic series for beginners and the MK-TE is the model that really stands out among the best acoustic-electric ukulele in its price range.
Kala MK-TE is a lightweight tenor uke with a mahogany body and neck. The walnut fingerboard is smooth and very playable. All of this beauty is topped with a satin finish that protects the uke from scratches, and accentuates the colors of the wood while at the same time allowing it to breathe and age well. Overall, you can really see that Kala put in the best of their knowledge and expertise and delivered on a construction that does not cost too much but yet is lightweight and durable enough for beginners.
With ukuleles under $100, there is not that much of the hardware. In most cases, the hardware is pretty basic. While that is somewhat true in case of the MK-TE, the “basic” hardware, in this case, is by no means a bad thing. The standard-shaped headstock is pretty well constructed and lightweight. On the bottom of the headstock, you have a plastic nut. While plastic might not be the most beloved material, the one used on this uke is optimal in quality and price. The bridge is made of walnut. That, along with the plastic saddle creates a really nice projection. This uke also ships with Aquila Super Nylgut which are a good fit for this instrument and allow for better intonation. Yap, there is not really anything that will stop you in the middle of you walk and make you stare at it for hours – BUT in this case functionality and durability really win.
Kala Makala Tenor Ukulele Sound
When it comes to the sound of the MK-TE, or basically any entry-level ukulele, I usually put a lot of importance on the playability of the instrument along with the sound. While the sound is damn important and it is the main reason why anyone would buy an instrument if the playability is not good the uke is a no-go. With smooth neck, pretty great action and comfortable construction the MK-TE is going to fit every beginner perfectly and make you feel like you have been playing for years. As for the sound, while no one will claim this is the most intricate and nuanced ukulele, it does create great projection, has nice intonation and the overall sound is sweet and mellow.
PS-900 which includes volume control and a 2-band EQ for tone control. It delivers a clean and natural sound. I don’t think there is a need to say this is not a pro-level system but, to be honest, why would you even need one if you are a beginner. This system allows for as much control as you will need in the beginning without being overly complicated for beginners. Apart from that, the pickup does a pretty neat job of reproducing the acoustic sound of the uke.
All in all, Makala Series have some amazing products for people who want to take a peek into the world of ukuleles without spending hundreds and hundreds on it. The MK-TE offers a mahogany body that gives nice sound, nuanced tone and durability. Apart from that, the electronics and decent hardware that this ukulele is equipped with cannot be beaten in the price range.
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