Written by SaifZiya
August 27, 2021
12 Min. Read
Some ukulists can be seen discoursing that baritone ukuleles are made only for people with bigger hands, but is that true or is it one of the myths that people easily fall for?
Well, that’s what you’ll discover in this article.
But why does the ukulele size matter?
Knowing which ukulele size is right for you is important. If you are not aware of the right size, you could end up buying the wrong uke, and every ukulele resonates differently based on its size and tonewood.
While the sound is what makes a huge difference when it comes to the size of a ukulele, it’s not everything (read on to see why).
Why Should You Buy a Baritone Ukulele?
I don’t know why people treat baritone as a “Black Sheep” when, in fact, it’s as beautiful as other members of the uke family. It’s the only instrument that, when compared, possesses more resembling properties of a guitar.
Here are the 4 reasons why a baritone ukulele is designed for you:
1. Cool Size
First thing first, you cannot fail to admit the size of the baritone ukulele is something that gives you the feeling of both: the guitar and ukulele.
Although people may tell you that it’s only for people with bigger hands or those who are taller, that’s not the case; baritone ukuleles can be enjoyed by any person—even those who have mid-sized hands.
Like other instruments, you can play it with straps, play sitting or standing; there’re no boundaries—you can play however you feel like playing it.
And, if you really do have bigger hands, it’d serve a great purpose for you.
It brings those perfect melodies to life, without letting you miss out on the highs and lows.
Similarly, a baritone is packed with 4 strings, but what sets it apart is the tuning; unlike the rest three ukes that are tuned to D-C-E-A, a baritone is tuned to D-G-B-E.
What makes a baritone uke adorable is that it’s capable of producing sweet and bright sounds to melt your heart irrespective of where you play it; in your room, on the balcony or terrace, or even outside.
If you’ve always admired those warm, rich, and darker tones, baritone ukuleles will bring these tonal patterns to life.
If by any chance you happen to be a jazz or blues player, you’ll fall in love with the overall projection of a baritone ukulele. It allows you to experiment with tonal range and create a deeper sound.
3. Easy to Play
If you’ve been a guitarist before, you won’t have to struggle with a baritone.
Since it’s bigger in size, the fret is wide, and there’s enough space between the strings that don’t become a hindrance for people with large fingers to strum or do the fingerpicking.
That means you no placing your fingers on the wrong strings accidentally.
It comes as a surprise is that a baritone ukulele can also be played like a guitar because a baritone is tuned to D-G-B-E, whereas, a guitar has a standard tuning of E-A-D-G-B-E.
If you also own a guitar, you can also play it like your baritone. Just assume that your guitar has only four strings (you can ignore the first two strings on the top—the 5th and 6th one).
a) Don’t Worry About the Low G or High G
What’s also good about the baritone ukulele is that you don’t have to worry about the low or high G thing as baritone ukuleles are ready to produce both deeper, fuller, and brighter sounds so you can start brimming with positive energy right away.
Best Baritone Ukulele for the Money
A ukulele (not just a baritone) should allow you to enjoy the tones so that you could feel like you’re living it up in Hawaii or one of your favorite places.
As you spend your precious time with the instrument, it should offer you improved focus and mental clarity, not to mention it’s a great way to unwind with your friends after a busy day at work.
So, are you ready to appreciate those lower pitches?
It’s about time you meet one-of-a-kind, budget, and spacious baritone ukuleles that are ready to deliver excellent tones.
Don’t worry, I won’t bombard you with so many options but will only show you the top 5 baritones.
1. Kala KA-B Mahogany Baritone Ukulele
Tonewood is something that counts as a prominent feature in all ukuleles out there, and even experts would agree on this.
Brand’s commitment can only be considered genuine if it’s promising to use a high-quality tonewood in the instrument.
Presenting Kala’s good-looking mahogany baritone that boasts a semi-gloss finish, which makes ukulists wow at the first sight. Crafted with beautiful rosewood and mahogany, this baritone has been designed to exceed all your musical prospects in the first place.
While this piece of beauty resembles the MK-B model, many significant aspects make it fall apart from the latter and quality rosewood construction (that goes into bridge and fingerboard) is one of those things.
It’s packed with a total of 18 frets, meaning you will have the control to experiment with more notes without having to depend on the higher strings. And, that’s one of the things that pro ukulists recommend when it comes to writing preludes.
If you’re wondering what brand strings this uke utilizes (since it’s nowhere to be found in the description), let me keep you at ease. It features those soft and good-sounding Aquila nylon strings.
Unlike many ukes, this one will require little to no tuning—a lifesaver in that area. However, if you’re a novice player i.e., you haven’t used any stringed instrument in your life, you may have to tune it every time before casting those magical strumming patterns on it.
So, will you need to tune it again and again?
Well, not really! It comes with pre-stretched strings that will help you skip the period where the stretching comes into play.
If you have never heard of Aquila strings before, I suggest you read my detailed take on the uke strings and be at ease.
If you have always been disdainful of baritone ukuleles being larger-bodied instruments, I recommend you give this one a try and you won’t regret the purchase.
I also loved the low-action characteristic of this ukulele.
2. Makala Baritone Mahogany Ukulele by Kala (MK-B)
Are you in search of a ukulele that is crafted with top-notch tonewood and ready to deliver outstanding tones irrespective of bad weather conditions?
Meet MK-B, another uke from Makala (a series of Kala). Its full-bodied, warm, balanced tones will have your heart the first you strum those beautiful Nylgut strings. It’s one of those ukes that don’t die down as they age. In fact, it’ll get better and better as ages—yes, that’s the beauty of Aquila strings and mahogany tonewood.
On top of being packed with all must-have features like a-one strings, Walnut fretboard, delightful sounds, there’s more to it than what’s on the surface.
It brings that uninterrupted playability to life and most significant, it doesn’t break the bank; this baritone ukulele is up for grabs for under $100 only.
If you’ve been thinking of starting a YouTube channel lately, it’s never too late. This piece of beauty would be a great inspiration to discover different strumming patterns while sitting in a group with fellow musicians.
If you have trouble playing a ukulele standing, no worries—these ukulele straps would offer you calmness because they don’t require any drilling.
Kala is renowned for its ultimate craftsmanship, excellent tone, and industry-leading accessories in its legendary ukuleles, and the baritone ukes are no exception.
To take it even further, you can easily access the truss rod through the soundhole if you do want to do a little bit of tweaking for the alignment of the body—or to make sure it’s adjusted properly.
Moreover, you can get it as low as $99—no more breaking the bank to get a beautiful and good-sounding ukulele.
No matter if you buy this baritone uke for your wife or daughter who’s 18 years old, you’re good to go. However, if you’re considering it for your kiddo, you need to think twice as it’s bigger in size, but these ukes for kids will give you serenity for sure.
This baritone ukulele is compatible with all uke straps and you can even put it inside in any case and take it with you when going out with your buddies, or maybe you’d like to try out these fancy and long-lasting uke stands.
3. Caramel 30-inch Zebrawood Baritone Ukulele (Hybrid)
There’s something unique about this baritone ukulele from Caramel. It has a unique vibe, and the fact that it’s made out of exotic zebrawood makes it a real treasure for the uke lovers out there.
The package is full of mysteries. It comprises all the add-ons you can think of, such as a wrench for adjusting the truss rod, a gigbag to keep your uke out of harm’s way i.e., protected from all types of insects that feed on wood like termites.
The high gloss finish is what people notice first and fall in love with. Bring a hybrid ukulele, you can either play it as an acoustic or electric ukulele. That means connecting an external amplifier (amp) will no longer be a problem for you.
If you often find yourself cranking up the volume of your preferred music, this could be the perfect-fit uke because it boasts a built-in tuner along with an amp, which will allow boosting whatever melody you play on your uke.
Although—as you know—a baritone is tuned to D-G-B-E, there’s a pack of spare strings (with a standing tuning of G-C-E-A, just in case you need it).
To help you get started with the strumming patterns, there are 3 nice picks that you can use to avoid finger calluses, and when you think the uke is getting a little dirt, the cleaning cloth is there to save your day.
Now, some might argue that this baritone is a little expensive. Well, they’re probably right about that, however, when it comes to having extra comfort that accessories included in the pack arrange for, it’s worth your time and money, hands down!
You don’t even need to invest in an EQ cable, it’s there in the bundle. And as you browse through, you’ll discover that there’s a wall hanger that you can use to hand your ukulele from.
What also surprises me is that Caramel didn’t fail to provide a uke strap in the setup so your hands don’t have to worry about holding the ukulele in a perfect position and so you could focus on the strumming.
If you find this piece of beauty a little costly, consider this uke that is available for under $100 and also from the same brand.
I know, no one can play a uke like a pro in a single day, but — at the end of the day — these things do make a huge difference. And you find that things aren’t working out for you, the instruction manual will be a lifesaver for you.
This uke is capable of doing wonders for musical journey!
4. Kala KA-BEM Baritone Ukulele (Exotic Mahogany)
There is a reason why I’ve included so many ukes from Kala. Not only are Kala’s ukes made out of exceptional tonewoods, but also they vibrate pretty well and put even the professional players at ease.
Maybe now you understand why Kala ranks #1 on the list of best ukulele brands.
It’s a flawless instrument for blues players, offering warm, deeper, and rich tones. Packed with exotic mahogany, it’s able to do wonders and surprise you in distinct ways. The tonewood also gives it a traditional look, setting set new heights for nature lovers.
How does it manage to offer such excellent tones?
Well, the tonewood that goes into this uke is dense, hard, and stiff and, therefore, capable of emphasizing the low and mid-range frequencies.
Wait till you get your hands on this beauty.
It’ll take only a couple of seconds to realize that this is the instrument you’ve always longed for as soon as you go for your first strum.
Those little stunning grain patterns are what had me astonished when I first beheld it, and that satin finish does the job—adds a complimentary remark. Although there’s no gigbag, you’re lucky to have that nut and saddle from GraphTech NuBone.
If you’re on the lookout for a ukulele that produces crisp, clear, and characteristic tones, this ukulele will make your dream come true, offering enhanced harmonics and well-balanced tones.
Just by the look at this uke, you can tell that Kala’s got the eye for detail and maybe that’s how they’ve been able to embellish this baritone. In fact, if you already have several ukes i.e., you’re a pro player, you’ll end up saying “There’s nothing quite like it”.
It’s super easy to set up, hold the tune, and creates no buss whatsoever. No matter if you’re a fan of finger styling (fingerpicking) or if you’re after those thrumming techniques, this would give you goosebumps.
Often put a capo on the 5th fret?
Well, you won’t have any difficulty doing that at all.
It’s really a “Big Boy” that has got dominance over the aforesaid (reviewed) ukuleles. I know, it’s a bit pricey for a player who’s just getting started, but considering the out-of-this-world sound that it projects, you can’t fail to grab.
While it will exceed all the tonal outlooks you have about this uke, you’re still not getting a gigbag, and that’s a blast, not to mention the low action which is the preference of most people.
Do you have chubby fingers?
It doesn’t if your fingers are chubby or bigger, this uke works like a charm with any type of hand, especially the bigger ones.
If you’ve played guitar before, you won’t have any problem getting along at all.
5. Kmise 30-inch Baritone G-C-E-A Ukulele
Most people prefer baritone ukes to other members in the ukulele class because it’s tuned D-G-B-E. However, not all baritones are tuned that way, some even follow the standard tuning of G-C-E-A, provided that you’ve got your hands on the right strings.
If you ever wondered if a baritone could have the features of a typical ukulele and wanted to have such an instrument, look no further; this baritone ukulele from Kmise has been crafted with people like you in mind.
It’s a 30-inch ukulele that projects fuller, lower, and resonant sounds. Made out of an a-class mahogany, you’ll be floating on cloud seven when playing this work of art.
Scratching is something that always becomes a bane of one's existence when trying out different strumming techniques. However, with Kmise’s neatly fret wire, you’ll never experience any such thing.
Plus, the fingerboard—which has been crafted using premium quality rosewood—has been smoothened so can play your uke comfortably. No more compromising on the safety of your hands.
What I loved about this baritone ukulele is its ability to perform without buzzing, and the low action will blow will away. There’s also an Allen wrench included in the pack, giving you the freedom to adjust the action based on your preference.
For the vibration to transit properly, Kmise has made use of top-notch real bone nut and saddle for the best playing experience. That’s a benefit for all ukulists looking for comfort. String? It’s from Aquila that never gets old and produces warm, bright, and penetrating tones.
If you’ve always wanted the crafting of abalone inlay, well-made mahogany construction, and an adjustable truss rod in a ukulele, this beauty is meant for your eyes only.
FAQs on Baritone Ukuleles
Yes, absolutely! Although brands advise you to get the most out of a baritone ukulele that follows the standard tuning of D-G-B-E, if you admire the GCEA, you can tune it that way.
In fact, the 5th baritone on this list comes with built-in G-C-E-A tuning. So, if that’s what you’re after, go ahead with that.
Also, don't try to install the strings if you have no experience of doing that. Need a helping hand? Ask your friend to come over.
Unless you’re an expert, I wouldn’t advise doing that because you could end up breaking the bridge or run into some other problem.
I know, it’s possible but it’s better to get a baritone that comes with tenor tuning i.e., GCEA.
While every stringed instrument lover may be a fan of concert or tenor ukulele, those who’ve played guitar before, know the prominence of a baritone ukulele. If you’re someone who has high regard for lower tone (warmer, darker, and richer sound), you can consider one of the aforesaid baritone ukuleles to suit your needs.
Another selling point why people love a baritone over other instruments is that it can be tuned to both D-G-B-E and G-C-E-A. That means you have more freedom on the tuning.
That way, you can also install one of these durable and smooth ukulele strings and become the best ukestar of your generation.
So, are you ready to taste those resonant sounds like never before?
It’s about time you picked one of the above-reviewed baritone ukuleles and steal the deal. You will never get enough of it while playing your favorite pop, jazz, or blues preludes on it.
Having a hard time understanding different ukulele intonations or while strumming your uke?
This guide on how to strum a ukulele like a pro will give you serenity.
Need the Best Baritone Ukulele?
If you're looking for a stringed instrument that can produce warmer, resonant, and deeper tones, you need a baritone ukulele for sure. We've picked some of the finest baritone ukes available on the market for you above. Nothing comes to mind? Go with the editor's choice.