6 Best Ukuleles For Beginners In 2020 That Look & Sound Great

The ukulele is one of the most affordable instruments to get your hands on and one of the easiest to learn.

There’s only one problem though… Which one should you buy?

You will have noticed that there are hundreds of ukes on the market and they all look pretty similar, right?

Well, you’ll be glad to know you’ve stumbled across the right place.

I’ve scoured the internet (and my personal collection) for the very best beginner ukuleles to help you get your jam on in no time!

Snapshot: The 6 Best Beginner Ukuleles

  1. Vangoa Mahogany Ukulele Starter KitBest Tenor
  2. Enya Nova U Carbon Fiber UkuleleBest Concert
  3. Everjoys Soprano UkuleleBest Soprano
  4. Kmise Classical Tiger Flame UkuleleBest Baritone
  5. Aklot Beginners Electric-AcousticBest Electric
  6. Kala Ziricote Concert Ukulele

Finding the Best Ukulele For Beginners

Best Beginner Ukulele

When you search “beginner ukulele” on the internet, you’ll see hundreds of thousands of results.

But, how do you know which uke is actually worth your money?

Well, when I was researching for this blog post I took a number of things into account. First of all, I only ever recommend incredibly well-crafted instruments (even if they are on the cheaper side). Great craftsmanship is what gives the ukulele its beautiful sound, so even if you don’t want to splash the cash, it’s important to check your new instrument is made well. I also wanted to make sure I gave plenty of affordable options.

You definitely don’t want to spend hundreds of dollars on a hobby you might not be able to keep up. However, I’d like to say don’t worry to my wealthier readers, I have thrown in some beautiful solid wood ukes just for you.

Last but not least, of course, I wanted to make sure every single uke on this list has a beautiful voice. I mean, you’d have thought all uke’s sound great but there are some shockers out there, let me tell ya!

Also, I have found the best beginner ukuleles in every size so whether you’ve got sausage fingers or kid’s hands, the perfect uke for you is on this list.

So, let’s get on with the reviews…

The 6 Best Beginner Ukuleles In 2020

Child Learning to Play the Ukulele

1. Vangoa Mahogany Ukulele Review – Best Tenor

Tenor Ukulele Professional 26 Inch Mahogany Ukulele Starter Kit for Adults Beginners, by Vangoa
  • Superior Materials: Traditional acoustic tenor ukulele with beautiful laser etched pattern features selected mahogany body and neck, walnut fingerboard and bridge, chrome fully closed high precision...
  • Easy to Play: Being with well finished and smooth fretboard on both sides, you do not need to worry about being scratched. The ukulele is designed at a low action and suitable nut width to ensure you...
  • Unique Design: The arched back makes the ukulele has more space to give fuller and deeper sound than the ukulele with flat back. Vangoa tenor ukulele has 17.13 inch long scale length, which can...

Big hands? No problem. Tenors are just as fun to learn as concerts or sopranos. You’ll want to pick this beautiful Vangoa ukulele up off the shelf every day, trust me. It’s well-crafted and worth every penny!

Body

Ooh Lala. What a body. An arched back, classic white binding, and even strap pegs… What more could a gal want? Can you tell I’ve been alone for a bit too long now? Jokes aside, for an affordable ukulele, this Vangoa Tenor is incredibly well crafted for optimal sound. If you’re completely new to ukuleles, you’re probably wondering what the hell I’m talking about so I’ll try my best to explain what makes this uke so great.

It’s arched back forces all of the wonderful sounds you create by strumming or plucking towards the soundhole. This means you’ll get a lot more volume and sustain (the sound will ring out for longer). I also love how well the body is bound. Its edges have been rounded off for more comfortable playing and the white binding adds a beautiful classic flair to its look.

Neck & Hardware

This Vangoa ukulele has a lovely C-shaped neck which is incredibly comfortable to hold. If you’re new to playing stringed instruments altogether, you may take a bit of time to adjust. A nicely shaped neck like this will make the transition a lot easier on your hands and will stop you from getting those horrible finger cramps if you do end up putting in hours of practice. Another great thing about this uke is its low action. I find ukes with lower action easier to play altogether, especially when it comes to learning bar chords. You’ll thank me later!

Sound

Tenor ukuleles tend to have more of a mellow sound with much higher sustain and this one is no exception. However, it does still have that classic Hawaiian ukulele sound. If you’re only in the market for a tenor uke because you’ve got big hands rather than for a different sound, don’t worry! You can still get that classic Hawaiian ukulele sound even with this larger instrument.

Spec Summary

  • Body: Laminate mahogany
  • Neck & Hardware: Mahogany neck with closed chrome tuners
  • Fingerboard: Walnut with nickel silver fret wires
  • Bridge: Walnut

A really well-crafted tenor ukulele with amazing sound quality and sustain

Final Thoughts on the Vangoa Mahogany Ukulele

This is the perfect beginner ukulele. It’s well-crafted and optimized to sound better than your average affordable uke. Tenor ukuleles are more suited to adults with bigger hands, so if that’s you then you’ll love this uke. I also love that it still produces a really pretty, classic Hawaiian ukulele sound – just a bit more on the mellow side due to its size.

2. Enya U Carbon Fiber Ukulele Review – Best Concert

Enya Concert Ukulele Nova U 23’’ Carbon Fiber Travel Ukulele with Beginner Kit includes online...
  • ♫ Made of carbon fiber composite polycarbonate with durable construction. Waterproof and easy-to-clean body.
  • ♫ Much more bright sound compares to wooden ukuleles. Side sound hole design ensures better self-resonance during playing.
  • ♫ Super lightweight (1.25 lbs.) and thin body (2 inch). Designed to be your travel partner and ignore temperature and humidity.

This concert ukulele is not only incredibly stylish but also really low maintenance. If you’re new to ukulele (or any instrument) maintenance, this carbon fiber ukulele is a winner! You’ll love how it feels but, most importantly, you’ll love how it sounds.

Body

Like the Vangoa, this uke also has an arched back but it has a cutaway. I always recommend ukuleles with cutaways to beginners. They fit on the body so much easier and they’re a lot more comfortable to play. However, the thing I love most about this uke is what it’s made of. You may otherwise have been put off by a carbon fiber ukulele because they do look a little as if they’d sound a bit “plasticky”. However, carbon fiber instruments are incredibly low maintenance and they often sound better than even solid wood.

This uke will withstand any extreme temperature and humidity changes, so there’s no need to worry about maintenance at all. Its body is also really thin and incredibly lightweight, so that’s a plus! Say goodbye to aching arms. Also, this uke will make the perfect travel buddy.

Neck & Hardware

The Enya U has a really firm neck. Sounds funny, I know, but it’s the little details like this that make it the perfect beginner ukulele. Its carbon fiber neck allows the sound to vibrate through the fingerboard, giving it a much fuller and louder voice. It also has some really pretty gold open-geared tuners with gearheads to match your chosen color. Love, love, love!

Sound

The great thing about this uke is that it won’t slip out of tune as easily as other affordable ukuleles. Temperature change and movement in the neck are usually two of the main reasons you’ll find your ukulele going out of tune but, as I said, the Lava U can withstand either. However, the juiciest part of this review is how the ukulele actually sounds and, oh man, it sounds great! This ukulele strikes the perfect balance between that pretty Hawaiian sound and a more soulful voice. In fact, if you fancy trying your hand at fingerpicking (pardon the pun) then this is the best uke to learn on!

Spec Summary

  • Body: Carbon fiber (comes in black, blue, pink, white and orange)
  • Neck & Hardware: Carbon fiber with gold open-geared tuners
  • Fingerboard: Walnut with nickel silver fret wires
  • Bridge: Walnut

A sleek, stylish and low maintenance uke – the all-round best ukulele for beginners

Final Thoughts on the Lava U Carbon Fiber Ukulele

I really love this ukulele. It’s a perfect ukulele for beginners as it takes all of the worries about maintenance away. It would actually be a great option for teenagers who have outgrown the soprano size. You really can’t go wrong with this uke, in my opinion. It sounds amazing and it’s made incredibly well with players of all difficulties in mind. So, you won’t have to splash the cash on an expensive uke as you progress.

3. Everjoys Soprano Ukulele Review – Best Soprano

Soprano Ukulele Beginner Pack-21 Inch w/Gig Bag Fast Learn Songbook Digital Tuner All in One Kit
  • ✅ KEEP CALM & PLAY THE UKULELE - Discover the unique melodic sound of the Hawaiian Islands with our elite 21" Soprano Ukulele Beginner Pack! Now you can teach yourself the ukulele, thanks to our...
  • ✅ SUPERIOR-QUALITY CRAFTSMANSHIP - Our amazing 21" traditional soprano ukulele combines selected fine basswood for the body, solid wood for the neck and blackwood for the finger board and bridge....
  • ✅ LEARN HOW TO PLAY WHILE HAVING FUN -12 Nickel Silver Frets with correct frets positing marked on 5th, 7th, 10th of blackwood fingerboard. The magnificent soprano ukulele features playable nylon...

Soprano ukuleles are the best option for kids and this Everjoys soprano ukulele will make learning much easier! It’s the perfect starting point if your kid’s showing interest in music and it’s cheap, what more could you want?

Body

I just love this uke. It looks like a baby classical guitar! Unlike the first two ukes on this list, it doesn’t have an arched back which means it doesn’t have quite as much volume or sustain. However, it does have a thin top, which means you’re not missing out on too much. Plus, the price makes up for it, in my opinion. There’s not all that much to say about this uke, it doesn’t really have any special features but it does the job and sometimes that’s all you need!

Neck & Hardware

Okay, so the thing I love most about this ukulele is its strings. Each color represents a different note and will make it so much easier to learn. When I was learning to fingerpick, I often forgot what note each string was, this way you just need to remember blue is C, and so on.

If you’re planning on teaching your kids how to play, this will give you a great starting point! I will say, however, that the strings will slip in and out of tune. Although this uke does come with good quality tuners, so it will ease off over time. Cheaper ukuleles just tend to take a little longer to adjust. As long as you remember to tune your uke every time you play and again halfway through your session, it will be absolutely fine!

Sound

For a uke as affordable as this, I’m surprised at how great it sounds. It has a really pretty, bright voice and doesn’t sound cheap at all! It really is a joy to play and, if you fancy putting a little extra effort into learning, the Everjoy uke sounds amazing when played percussively.

Spec Summary

  • Body: Basswood
  • Neck & Hardware: Solid mahogany neck with open-geared tuners
  • Fingerboard: Blackwood
  • Bridge: Blackwood

The perfect beginner ukulele for kids

Final Thoughts on the Everjoys Soprano Ukulele

I think this is the perfect beginner ukulele for a child. It has a beautiful sound and is really fun to play. Plus, its colorful strings make it so much easier to learn. I actually bought this uke for my little sister a few years ago and she picked it up in no time! Plus, you can always swap out the strings for something more traditional once you’ve got to grips with the notes.

4. Kmise Tiger Flame Baritone Ukulele Review – Best Baritone

Sale
Classical Ukulele Kit Tiger Flame Okoume Wood for Beginner and Professional Player By Kmise (30 Inch...
  • Gorgeous Looks: Kmise baritone ukulele is part of Kmise's Okoume series, providing you with stunning looks. One look at its special tiger flame Okoume top, back and sides, it really a special ukulele.
  • Stable Tuning: This baritone ukulele come with a set of 18:1 high-quality tuner, so you know this uke is working well to stay in tune. Pick up this amazing uke and enjoy a quality playing experience!
  • Premium Strings: The high-quality strings of this baritone ukulele produce is further proof of Kmise's quality workmanship. It strung with premium metallic & nylon strings, offer you lush and warm...

Generally, the bigger the ukulele the more expensive they get so it’s normally pretty hard to find a good baritone at a good price. However, I have accomplished the impossible and uncovered this gem from Kmise.

Body

Now I know it shouldn’t matter but I just absolutely love how this uke looks. It’s beautifully book-matched on the top and its tiger stripes are so striking. Little things like this, although pretty, also show just how much attention to detail has gone into crafting the instrument.

Also, is it just me or does it look as if this uke is straight out of Hawaii? I mean, it’s to die for! Sorry, got a bit carried away there. Anyway, aesthetics aside, what I really wanted to point out about this Kmise ukulele is how incredibly well-crafted it is for an affordable baritone. Plus, it has a solid Okuome top, which does wonders for its soulful sound.

Neck & Hardware

Baritone ukes have the longest scale and offer a lot more room for your hands than concerts or tenors. If cramming your fingers onto tiny frets seems next to impossible, you might want to go for this guy instead. This Kmise baritone uke is so lovely to play. Its fretboard is finished beautifully and its C-shape neck is really comfortable to hold.

Although it is pretty cheap where baritones are concerned, you honestly can’t tell. Its classical guitar headstock makes it look quite expensive, actually. Kmise definitely hasn’t skimped on quality here.

Sound

This Kmise baritone sounds just lovely. It has a really soft, mellow sound that could honestly put you to sleep. If you’re looking to buy a ukulele to distract you from everything that’s going on in the world, this Kmise baritone will definitely do the job. It’s harplike and beautiful (once you get the hang of playing it, of course).

Spec Summary

  • Body: Tiger Flame Okoume
  • Neck & Hardware: Okoume neck with 18:1 open-gear tuners
  • Fingerboard: Walnut
  • Bridge: Walnut

A gorgeous tiger-striped baritone with a soft, mellow sound

Final Thoughts on the Kmise Tiger Flame Baritone Ukulele

You will definitely get your money’s worth with this Kmise Baritone. It’s a great option for adults with bigger hands or for guitarists looking to give the ukulele a go. What I love about this uke is, even if you don’t have as much time as you’d like to practice, it will still look brilliant on display. It’s such a beautiful instrument!

5. Aklot Beginners Electric-Acoustic Ukulele Review – Best Electric

AKLOT Electric Acoustic Soprano Ukulele Solid Mahogany Ukelele 21 inch Beginners Starter Kit with...
  • 【Solid Wood Soundboard】Under The Same Conditions,Compared With The Laminated Wood Ukulele,Natural Solid Mahogany Wood is More Natural And Compact ,Offer The Ukulele Better Sustain, More Stable...
  • 【Advanced Tuner】 1:18 Pure Copper Gear (rather than poor quality brass-plated zinc alloy); Finer and More Stable Tuning; Ensures the Ukulele the Best Intonation, Stays in Tune for Longer Times.
  • 【Installed EQ】3 Band Pre Amp to Play Like a Electric Guitar,and On board Electric Tuner

I only recently discovered Aklot ukuleles and I have been impressed ever since. They make the best affordable electric ukuleles I’ve probably ever played. Who said beginners shouldn’t play electric ukes? Certainly not me!

Body

Like all of the ukes on this list, this Aklot electric-acoustic is incredibly well-crafted and a pleasure to play. It’s adorned with a bird-shaped bridge, giving it quite a unique look. Growing up, the ukulele was something we used to play as a family. We would pass it around the room and make up little songs. So, if you’ve run out of things to do as a family in lockdown, why not encourage everyone to learn something new? There’s a lot of fun to be had with an electric uke, plus, it won’t break the bank!

Neck & Hardware

This Aklot concert ukulele comes with 18:1 copper, open geared tuners. They’re great quality but you should still expect the tuning to fluctuate for the first few weeks. Its fingerboard is nicely bound to its neck and is, overall, very well put-together. One thing I absolutely love about this uke is its low action which stops you from getting that horrible buzzing sound.

I’m sorry to say that as a beginner you may hear a bit of buzzing when you play, but that’s usually down to not putting enough pressure on the strings. Just bear that in mind when you’re starting out!

Electronics

This Acoustic-Electric comes with a really good quality Aklot preamp and a ¼ mono jack output. The preamp also works as an onboard tuner which is brilliant for beginners (I can’t even tell you how many tuners I’ve lost in my time). Overall, the electronics are good quality, easy to use, and get the job done. What more could you ask for?

Sound

I’m always surprised by how much volume this little uke can project, even before it’s amped up. Its solid wood soundboard gives its voice a really nice tone. I love this concert ukulele because you can play it without the amp for a bit of a softer sound, or you can amp it up for extra volume and sustain. Either way, it sounds really lovely.

Spec Summary

  • Size: Concert
  • Body: Laminate mahogany with a solid mahogany soundboard
  • Neck & Hardware: Mahogany neck with 18:1 copper open-gear tuners
  • Fingerboard: Walnut
  • Bridge: Walnut

A really affordable electric-acoustic ukulele, great for the whole family!

Final Thoughts on the Aklot Beginners Electric-Acoustic Ukulele

This uke sounds great even when it’s played naturally and that’s what I love about it for beginners. You can practice without the pickup, then when you’ve got some more confidence go ahead and amp up! Also, as I said before, it’s a great instrument for the whole family – perfect for at-home music lessons.

6. Kala Ziricote Concert Ukulele Review

Kala Ziricote Concert Ukulele - High Gloss Natural
  • Concert Ukulele with Ziricote Body
  • Walnut Fingerboard - High Gloss
  • Mahogany Neck

Okay, I promised all you wealthy readers a solid wood option and I’m going to deliver. This high-end Kala concert ukulele will knock your socks off with its beauty and sound.

Body

I honestly have nothing bad to say about this uke. It was the first expensive ukulele I ever bought and I absolutely love playing it. It’s beautifully crafted and incredibly unique. If you’ve read my blogs before, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of unique instruments and this Kala uke is what my dreams are made of.

However, it’s not just great for looking at, it’s also comfortable to play and as I’ve mentioned already, solid-wood ukuleles do need a little bit more TLC. If you do decide to take the splurge, make sure you store it in a dry place. Make sure you read the instructions for the ideal environment to keep your ukulele.

Neck & Hardware

I’m not going to lie, every detail on this ukulele is finished beautifully. It comes with high-precision, closed geared tuners which are really great and its fingerboard is bound nicely to the neck.

Sound

Okay, now I know all of that talk of storing at the right temperature and humidity seems like a lot of work but here’s why it’s worth it – the sound. You just can’t beat the sound of a solid wood ukulele like this. It has that bright Hawaiian side but with a gorgeous soulful tone. Obviously, it’s a bit more pricey than most beginner ukuleles I’d recommend but if you’ve got the money then why not?

Spec Summary

  • Size: Concert
  • Body: Solid ziricote with a gloss finish
  • Neck & Hardware: Mahogany neck with closed gear tuners
  • Fingerboard: Laurel
  • Bridge: Lauren with NuBone saddle

A beautiful high-end beginner ukulele with a gorgeous tone

Final Thoughts on the Kala Ziricote Concert Ukulele

I wouldn’t usually recommend high-end ukuleles to beginners because they need more care and, of course, cost a lot more. However, if you’re a serial musician like me and you know you’ll probably get the hang of playing pretty soon, why not splurge? Plus, sometimes spending a bit more money on an instrument makes you more motivated to learn!

Find Peace With a Beginners Ukulele

Whether reading a book, watching the telly, or picking up a new instrument is your thing, it’s okay to want a little distraction.

So, if you’re like me and music is what keeps you going, then you’ll find peace with a ukulele.

I genuinely think it’s impossible to be anxious when I’m playing the uke – it’s one of the happiest sounds in the world!

Now is probably the best time to learn and I know you’ll love your new ukulele.

Further Reading: