Few musical instruments boast different varieties like the ukulele. If you decide to search for the term “types of ukulele” on a search engine, you’ll be met with different options.

Many people find ukulele chords quite easy to master. This explains why beginners are more comfortable playing the ukulele than a guitar.

One difficult problem that beginners often face is knowing the right kind of ukulele to buy. We understand why this is a problem; there are varieties of ukuleles. They come in different sizes and colors.

If you’re an amateur at playing the uke, you need expert advice on how to buy a suitable type. Apart from seeking expert advice, you should also do your research. Go online and read reviews about the product you are buying.

Moreover, buying the right type of ukulele will not automatically turn you into a guru; you must continue taking ukulele lessons.

The purpose of this article is to explain the five most common ukulele sizes. Reading this article would help you make the right choice.

Later on, we’ll also inform you what the five different types of ukulele sound like.

Let’s get started!

The Five Main Sizes of Ukuleles

There are five main sizes of ukuleles for both pros and beginners to choose from. Manufacturers of ukuleles often make slight tweaks to their products to create a unique design.

However, to avoid complications, ukuleles have generally been grouped into five main sizes. So here are the five types:

  • Soprano
  • Concert
  • Bass
  • Baritone
  • Tenor

Soprano ukulele

When you hear the word “ukulele,” the soprano ukulele Is likely to come to mind by default. It measures about 53 centimeters in length.

One of the smallest ukuleles you would find around. Some people refer to it as the ukulele in its purest form. It’s quite common among beginners. If you want to learn how to play, the soprano uke is the best to start with.

Concert ukulele

The concert ukulele is for people who don’t feel comfortable holding a small instrument like the soprano. It measures about 58 centimeters in length.

The spaces between the frets are a bit wider. So if your fingers are bigger and longer than the average size, the concert uke would be perfect for you.

Baritone ukulele

The baritone ukulele is quite different from other types; it is about 30 inches long. Everything about it is big, it has a wide fretboard and neck.

It can be used by both amateurs and professionals. The depth of its sound makes it stand out from other types of ukuleles.

Tenor ukulele

The tenor ukulele is about 2 inches longer than the concert uke. Almost every ukulele maker has a tenor uke. It’s also suitable for those with big fingers.

Bass ukulele

The bass ukulele shares a lot of similarities with the bass guitar. It’s about 32 inches long. It’s easy for a bass guitar player to transition to playing the bass ukulele. It has a deep voice, but not as deep as the baritone ukulele.

Why Are There Multiple Ukulele Sizes?

There are multiple ukulele sizes to bring about different resonances and a better projection of downward frequencies.

In the acoustic world, the size of an instrument has a direct impact on the resonance and volume of sound. So to generate different pitches and resonances, different sizes of ukuleles were made.

For example, the soprano ukulele is the smallest in the class of ukuleles. This is why it is quite difficult for it to project bass frequencies and higher volumes.

On the other hand, tenor and concert ukuleles fare better than the soprano uke in the aspects of bass projection and volume. So the bigger the size of your ukulele, the better it is at projecting bass frequencies.

The size of the ukulele you choose should depend on your personal style and preferences. More importantly, the size of your fingers should also determine your preference.

If you have big fingers, you will struggle with the soprano ukulele due to the narrow fret spaces.

Ukulele Tuning and Sizes

When it comes to tuning, there are slight variations for all sizes of ukulele. The variations are not difficult to understand.

The universal standard tuning for the soprano, tenor, and concert ukulele is GCEA. However, the baritone and bass ukulele have different kinds of tuning, theirs is D-G-B-E, which is the same as the standard guitar.

To play the ukulele the right way, tuning is crucial. To make it easier, you can download pocket ukulele chords tuner app. In addition, you also need to train your ears to tune your ukulele if a tuner app isn’t available.

Another thing ukulele beginners have found helpful is choosing a reference instrument to tune their ukulele to match. A common instrument to choose is the piano.

What Do the Different Sizes of Ukulele Sound Like?

All ukuleles do not sound the same way. The way an ukulele sounds depends on its size. For example, the soprano uke has a higher pitch than other ukuleles. It makes the classic “plinky” sound. So if you want to play bass music, the soprano ukulele is the wrong choice.

The pitch of a tenor ukulele is not as high pitched as the soprano ukulele. It sounds more like a guitar. It’s not surprising why many professionals have this as their go-to ukulele.

The spaces between the frets are wide enough to accommodate any finger type. In addition, the tenor ukulele has more playable notes than others.

Meanwhile, the concert uke can be described as a bridge between the soprano and the tenor ukulele. It has the attributes of both types.

Like we mentioned earlier, the baritone uke is the largest in the ukulele family. The tuning is the same as the four strings of a standard six string guitar. Like the name suggests, it has a deep, baritone sound.

What is the Best Ukulele Size for a Beginner?

If you are just starting to master basic ukulele chords, the soprano ukulele is great for you. There are many factors that make it perfect for beginners. It has the standard tuning of G-C-E-A.

Most beginners find the soprano uke easier to play since the size is not intimidating like other ukuleles. Also, it’s the most budget friendly instrument out of other ukuleles.

It’s better you manage to save some money while polishing your ukulele-playing skills. As you become better at it, you can then decide to purchase a better one, which is more expensive.

Regardless of the size of your ukulele, the ultimate goal is to keep getting better at what you do.