The ukulele is a really cool instrument to play. It’s popular among younger folks, and people with smaller hands, since it’s a lot smaller than a guitar and this makes it easier to play chords.
Compared to a regular guitar, or even more so a bass guitar, the frets on a ukulele are closer together. If a teenager wants to learn ukulele, there are a few considerations to keep in mind when choosing an instrument…
There’s obvious stuff like what your budget should be and how nice of a ukulele you want to get, but the major consideration is to consider what size ukulele is best for teenagers?
Here are the main types of ukuleles. What sets these sizes apart from one another is obviously how large they are, but also how they sound. Different types of ukuleles produce different sounds, but don’t worry, that’ll all sound like a ukulele.
The Soprano ukulele is the smallest of the four types. It measures 20 inches in length.
The volume from a Soprano ukulele won’t project as much as larger uke’s do, which can be great for a teenager playing in their bedroom who doesn’t need to fill an auditorium with sound.
The sound a Soprano ukulele is going to be a bit brighter, lighter, almost cheerful sounding. It has the same trademark ukulele sound as all the rest, but it just fills the higher, lighter
The Concert ukulele is the second smallest, and it measures 22 inches or 23 inches in length.
Each of the best ukulele sizes for teenagers on this list are going to get progressively louder with a better ability to project sound as the size increases.
The Concert ukulele is a really solid choice. Honestly, if someone is looking to learn the ukulele, they’re probably going to be happy with any type of Uke (short for Ukulele). Having said that, it’s still worthwhile to look at all of the different options and to choose the one that suits them best.
If you plan on buying a Ukulele and you’ve never held one before, it’s worth it to head down to your local music store and try a few different sizes. Most music stores should have at least 2 different sizes, but any decent-sized shop should have all four.
Next up is the Tenor ukulele. It’s the second largest and measures in a 26 inches long.
It’s still reasonably smaller than the baritone, but makes a great choice for a teenager who has larger hands but still wants a full ukulele experience.
The Tenor ukulele hits a sweet spot, it’s decently larger than a Soprano but it’s not quite as big as a Baritone.
The Tenor has a loud, strong sound and still uses the regular Ukulele tuning (You’ll notice in a moment that the Baritone, for example, uses something much closer to a guitar’s style of tuning).
If you want the loudness and projection and larger size, but still want it to be closer to “normal” types of Ukulele, then Tenor will be your best bet.
Finally, the largest type of ukulele is the Baritone. A Baritone ukulele 30 is inches long.
A Baritone ukulele is the largest of the four types, and it’s also the one that’s closest to a guitar.
Not only because it’s larger than other ukuleles, but also because the tuning of the strings is D/G/B/E, which match four strings on a guitar.
If you already play guitar, then a Baritone ukulele will be an easier transition. You’ll already have a feel for the note placements and the sounds you’ll get from each string, but with that Uke flair.
Choosing The Right Size Ukulele for Teenagers
The two main things to keep in mind when considering what size ukulele is best for teenagers are how big their hands are, and what type of sound they’re looking for.
A smaller ukulele will give off a “smaller” sound, in other words it’s brighter, lighter, less bass-y sounding, and it can’t quite project the sound as far.
On the other hand, a larger size ukulele will have a deeper, warmer sound.
The frets on smaller ukuleles are closer together which makes them easier to play for teens that have smaller hands, but harder to play for teens with larger hands.
If your teen is interested in guitar or always plays guitar, then a baritone ukulele will be the easiest transition since it’s tuned the same as a guitar and is the closest in size.
Final Thoughts on Which Size Ukulele Is Best For Teenagers
Hopefully, the above information has helped shine some light on which size ukulele for a teenager to play and learn on.
If you’re still unsure, go with a tenor or a concert ukulele to fall safely in the middle ground.
Many ukulele players will ultimately end up with multiple sizes of ukulele, so we’re really talking about finding a good starting point for a teenager. If they fall in love with the instrument, they’ll certainly want to get more sizes eventually.
With that in mind, the soprano ukulele is the most common and most popular size, so you can’t go wrong with that either when you’re trying to find the best size ukulele for teenagers. The one ukulele size that stands out as the most distinct is the baritone.
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