In this guide, we’re reviewing some of the best baritone ukuleles on the market, as well as diving into specifics in our baritone ukulele reviews.
We’re also going into plenty of details about this unique variation of the Ukulele.
- What is the Best Baritone Ukulele?
- What Is A Baritone Ukulele?
- Who Are Baritone Ukuleles For?
- Is Baritone Ukulele Good For Beginners?
- How Much Does A Baritone Ukulele Cost?
- Best Baritone Ukulele Brands
- Top 6 Best Baritone Ukulele Reviews
- Bag It Up
What Is A Baritone Ukulele?
Out of all four main types of ukulele, baritones are the biggest of the lot, and the deepest in terms of tone.
They’re also the newest creation out of all of the variations, dating back to roughly the 1940s when they started to become mainstay.
Baritone Ukuleles may not historically be the most popular form of Uke, but they’re certainly growing a larger fan base in recent years, for many reasons.
Baritone Ukuleles are popular for a thicker, fuller sound which fills more of the “low end”, think more of a bassy tone than the other models.
Though they are certainly not as low as a bass guitar would be, they are similar in tone to the low strings of a classical or “spanish” guitar.
The sound you may first expect when someone says the word “ukulele” is probably not that of a baritone.
For that reason, they are great options for anyone looking for something more specialist.
If you’ve seen a baritone ukulele used, you may well have noted the size of it.
29 inches is the standard size for these types of instruments.
Some are a little larger or a little smaller, and of course there are slight variations in the shape, too, but generally, they will be around this mark.
Who Are Baritone Ukuleles For?
Baritone ukuleles have more similarities with guitars than other Ukuleles do.
Whereas ukes are often tuned to GCEA, the baritone is usually tuned to DGBE.
Guitarists out there may have already spotted that these are traditionally the first four strings of the guitar.
For this reason, baritones are easier to transition to for those who have played one of these instruments.
The chord shapes are the same, just without the lowest two strings.
If you have played other types of ukuleles and wish to keep to the GCEA tuning, this may involve changing some strings, but it can be done.
In terms of those most likely to play these types of instruments, and where they fit in to band setups, it is a real case of personal preference.
There are some great youtubers out there doing solo performances with baritone ukes.
Whereas a Soprano ukulele, for example, may sound a little “thin” on its own, the baritone options cover more frequencies.
This “thicker” sound enables it to be used in solo performances.
For bands, whether folk or otherwise, this type of ukulele can sit nicely in songs as a rhythm section instrument, playing chords and driving the track along.
The rich tone of a baritone ukulele is also often favored by jazz players.
Is Baritone Ukulele Good For Beginners?
There is no reason you can’t learn on a baritone model, but there are some areas to be wary of if you plan to go down this route.
If you are an absolute beginner and plan to learn ukulele on a Baritone, you should definitely be careful with the tuning factor.
This will effectively be like learning your instrument all over again.
If you have large hands, you may find the baritone ukulele is easier to maneuver around, there is more room between the frets, which are naturally larger.
It will feel more natural to someone with a bigger build.
Sometimes the smaller models can feel like you are trying to contort your fingers to do something they’re not really capable of.
In this respect, baritone ukuleles are a good choice for beginners.
How Much Does A Baritone Ukulele Cost?
The answer “how long is a piece of string?” would be a cop out, admittedly, but it is an appropriate sentiment as a response to the question of how much baritone ukuleles cost.
These aren’t always the best quality, hence our reviews, designed to weed out some of the products which may not do the best job for your needs.
We’ve even got sections for the best baritone ukulele under $100 and the best baritone ukulele under $200 to help you make the right choice for your budget.
Best Baritone Ukulele Brands
Whichever type of ukulele you are looking to buy, there are certain brand names which crop up again and again.
Kala is a name you will very quickly become familiar with, and they offer more baritone ukuleles than any other brand on the market.
You may well expect them to be the industry leaders, with such a rich, Hawaiian history.
Their product range extends from value-for-money beginner models all the way to top-of-the-line ukuleles suitable for performance and recording.
Other brands seen regularly in the search for baritone ukuleles include Luna, another Hawaiian manufacturer, and Oscar Schmidt, an American company which has been functioning for almost 150 years, making guitars, ukes and even autoharps.
Believe it or not, the company started out selling door-to-door.
They have come a long way, offering some impressive baritone models.
There are fewer baritone ukuleles on the market in comparison to concert, soprano or tenor ukes, due to the slightly more specialist nature of the product.
That said, we were not short of great options when compiling this list.
Top 6 Best Baritone Ukulele Reviews
On to our baritone ukulele reviews.
We have considered every aspect of the buying process and the wide variety of consumers looking for a ukulele in our reviews.
Whether you just want a cheap baritone ukulele which will do a decent job, or want the best sounding baritone ukulele there is, we have recommendations based on your individual needs.
Here are the top 6 best baritone ukuleles for 2019:
Bag It Up
Before we wrap up this guide, one vital piece of advice to pass on involves the safety of your ukulele.
With many of the smaller types of uke, there are models sold with bags included.
Unfortunately, perhaps due to the more unorthodox size of the baritone models, there are nowhere near as many which include any form of bag or case.
While you don’t have to have a bag, it makes sense for most players.
At some point in time, you’re going to want to take your uke out and about with you, and a bag, or preferably a hardshell case, can do the job of protecting your beloved instrument.
It may seem like a basic piece of advice, but you wouldn’t be the first musician to spend $500 on an instrument and then carry it around without adequate protection.
A case or bag is an investment, which can ensure nothing happens to your ukulele when on its travels (or at least minimize the chances).
If you’re touring, even on a small scale, and your instrument is spending a lot of time in the trunk of a car or truck, then a case is nothing short of essential.
While we’ve listed the Kala KA-SA-B as our best choice for baritone ukuleles, the truth is that there is a decent amount of choice.
In spite of a relatively small market due to the fact the instrument is not the most popular out there.
However, this isn’t restrictive to potential buyers.
There are perfect options for beginners, intermediates and professionals.
As always when purchasing a uke, or any instrument, the key is to evaluate your needs and preferences and buy an option which suits these.
Deciding on the look, feel and tone you need will go a long way to informing your decision.
Spending a little extra time researching, going through baritone ukulele reviews and working out the best suited ukulele can lead to a purchase you are much happier with in the long run.