|Body And Neck:|
If you’re buying a ukulele in the sub-$500 price range, you expect it to show great design, superior woods and impeccable sound – perhaps with a little wow factor. So it’s no wonder Kala impress in this high-end category. Their KA-ASAC-B Baritone model promises everything we like to see in a premium uke, at an overall fair price. Too good to be true? Let’s find out.
With a baritone length of just under 31”, the entire body of the KA-ASAC-B is made with solid acacia – a tropical tonewood. Also known as the Mimosa or Shower Tree, acacia is very similar to koa in its appearance, with a lovely dark striped grain with lots of variation. The satin-finished body – which features an arched back – is bound with rosewood, while the top has an attractive herringbone purfling to match the herringbone rosette, giving this uke an elegant style which certainly catches the eye.
And you’ll be glad it did, because it’s an incredibly playable ukulele with pro levels of comfort. It features a silky-smooth satin-finished mahogany neck, which joins the body at the 14th fret and features 19 silver-nickel frets in total. We are particularly keen on the swirly pearl vine inlays that adorn the rosewood fingerboard (this may be walnut, depending on the marketplaces), which add some extra flash to this exotic uke.
So it looks and plays very well indeed. How does it stand up in the hardware department? There are no electronics on this model, but the slotted headstock comes fitted with a very stable set of Grover open-gear tuners with chrome keys, that feel very good to use. The rosewood bridge features a saddle made from GraphTech’s NuBone material, with a matching NuBone nut, while it’s strung with a set of Aquila’s premium Super Nylgut strings, which are strong and slick. While it’s a shame this uke doesn’t come with a case or strap buttons, the KA-ASAC-B continues to impress.
As we’ve mentioned, the KA-ASAC-B is made from solid acacia, which is also similar to koa in its sweet sound. There’s a deep, warm tone with a great bass response, giving you exactly what you want from a baritone ukulele. The quality build, the arched back, and solid woods all combine to deliver a hefty projection, with great sustain. It’s genuinely hard to fault this sweet baritone in the sound department.
Aside from lacking a case, there’s very little wrong with this gorgeous baritone uke from Kala. The overall look and build of the KA-ASAC-B just oozes quality, and you know you’re holding a higher-end instrument as soon as you pick it up. It sounds just as good too, with ample volume and an overall sweet tone that leaves you very satisfied.