The Makala MK-S Soprano Ukulele is one of the best entry-level ukuleles you will find. For such an inexpensive price, it provides a great level of playability and sound quality.
If you are looking for your first ukulele, or if you just want something that plays well and doesn’t cost anything then this is a great option to consider.
Now we have talked about what makes an entry level uke so great let’s look at why we chose this model as our top pick – if only because it was so good for its price – especially considering we currently own two of them!
However, we would recommend viewing our below as it may make more sense if you are in the market for an entry level uke.
Makala MK-S Improvements
It's critical to point out that Kala (the company that produces them) has committed to improving the quality of their MK-S' for a few years now, so please verify that the specifications we're about to discuss are included in the product description on any site where you intend to buy it.
Don't worry; we'll keep you informed as needed.
Kala KA-15S vs. Makala MK-S
It is very critical to point out that there is a close relative of the Makala MK-S that we highly recommend instead: The Kala KA-15S (link provided below, and it's also available via Amazon).
The main difference between them is that the KA-15S has a more expensive solid mahogany top, which makes it slightly better overall, but unfortunately will cost you around $20 more.
Frankly speaking, if you have the extra budget for it, we highly recommend spending on getting your hands on this one of these two options.
But if you don't have the resources for such splurging online, don't worry; you can still get yourself an excellent product at a reasonable price with the Makala MK-S.
The MK-S is impressively constructed, especially for the price. Overall craftsmanship was tight, clean, and precise.
There were no gaps, divisions, or other major issues that I could notice. While you shouldn't expect a guitar in this price range to be perfect, I was pleased with the build quality and couldn't come up with anything
The MK-S comes with a lightweight slipcover. While it's better than nothing, the cover is composed of a thin, fragile material that won't keep your uke safe from much more than dust.
If you want to safeguard your ukulele seriously, I recommend purchasing one.
Materials of Makala MK-S
The MK-S has a beautiful sound with a vintage look and is very appealing to the eye, thanks to its body and neck made of mahogany, fingerboard made of laurel, and smooth satin finish.
The major distinction between previous versions is that they were constructed of agathis wood, which is a less expensive material. It may still sound fairly well, but it falls short against mahogany.
One of the improvements Kala made that was particularly noteworthy is that they began replacing the low-cost strings supplied with their instruments (one of the changes we mentioned at the start).
The MK-S is now available with Aquila Super Nylgut Strings, which are among the industry's best.
Its even a good choice for the current year 2022
The MK-S has a very full-toned ukulele as a result of the aforementioned enhancements. Typically, low-cost ukuleles have a thin, plastic sound, however the MK-S maintains its ground. Is it possible to hear a significant difference?
No, but for a few dollars more, it could be worth considering how your music sounds.
Overall, in terms of playability, being the most crucial aspect to consider before purchasing any instrument, regardless of price.
You may compare a $5,000 Martin Ukulele to a $50 Makala and it'll come down to "Does it feel good to play? Is it pleasant? Is there a $4950 difference in conformability? By that point, it's all about your personal preference.
String action is a common problem in most entry-level and inexpensive ukuleles. String height is related to how difficult it is to play and keep intonation (we'll talk about intonation later).
Fortunately, the Makala MK-S does not have this issue. Kala has made certain that all of their ukuleles have fairly low action, as a result of which the pickups should be easy to play while also avoiding any buzz.
We can't emphasise enough that this is an entry-level uke. That being said, the MK-S sounds very good for what it costs.
Some entry-level instruments sound cheap or thin due to their low price point; however, the MK-S offers excellent tone quality.
The MK-S is without a doubt one of the finest, if not the finest entry-level ukulele. It's well constructed and sounds fantastic when compared to other low-cost ukuleles.
If you're considering whether or not you should invest in a Kala instrument, we suggest the KA-15S since it offers some upgrades that will make it better over time.