Instruments & Gear: New Gear

Martin Ukulele Strings and 2 Concert Ukulele

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A look at Martin’s Premium Ukulele and Ukulele Strings and the All-Mahogany 2 Concert Uke

by Teja Gerken
June 04, 2018

With good reason, C.F. Martin and Co. is known primarily for its steel-string flattop guitars, but the company has also been serious about its ukuleles long enough to have been part of the first ukulele boom in the early 1900s. Besides building a variety of ukuleles, Martin has also long offered its own strings for the instruments. In this video, we take a look at Martin’s latest Premium Ukulele and Ukulele strings, and a 2 Concert Uke.

Martin collaborated with Italian string specialist Aquila to develop the new Premium Ukulele strings. Made of a material called Polygut, the strings are designed to provide the tonality of traditional gut strings with the intonation and tuning stability that modern players expect. Available for soprano, concert, and tenor ukuleles, the strings have a bright sound with great sustain and volume.

Players looking for a warmer tone and an easy playing feel should check out Martin’s standard ukulele strings. Available for soprano/concert, tenor, and baritone ukuleles, the strings are made from a clear-colored fluorocarbon material.

Martin sent us a 2 Concert Uke strung with the new Premium Ukulele strings. Built using genuine solid mahogany for its top, back, and sides, the instrument is a concert-size instrument with a 15-inch scale and reflects Martin’s long history of crafting all-mahogany Style 2 ukuleles, which were first introduced in 1917. Built in Martin’s main factory in Nazareth, Pennsylvania, the instruments feature beautiful woods of very high quality, a traditional dovetail neck joint, and a very thin finish. Grained ivoroid binding, a multi-stripe rosette, and dot position markers in the rosewood fretboard give the instrument a simple, yet distinguished appearance.

The Martin 2 Concert Uke is an incredibly resonant instrument with a powerful and rich sound. Its dynamic tone makes it fun to play softly or with a bit of force, and its complex voice belies the instrument’s small size. Players ready to step up from entry-level instruments and who wish to own a ukulele that’s part of a significant heritage should be sure to check out the 2 Concert Uke.

2 CONCERT UKE SPECS: Concert ukulele. Genuine mahogany top, back, and sides. Sitka spruce bracing. Genuine mahogany neck. Indian rosewood fretboard and bridge. 15-inch scale. 1¹³/₃₂-inch nut width. Open-gear tuning machines. Made in USA. $2,049 (list).


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