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How Is The Ukulele Different To A Guitar?

Ukulele and guitar are both stringed instruments. If you’re to differentiate the two of them, you can say the ukulele is the younger brother of the guitar. Just like all siblings, ukulele and guitar share some similarities but are completely different from each other.

There are several things to consider if you’re looking to buy a ukulele or if you’re switching from a guitar to ukulele.

Let’s take a look at how the ukulele different to a guitar.

Size: Ukulele vs Guitar

Putting the ukulele and guitar side-by-side, you can clearly see which one is smaller. The ukulele is smaller than the guitar. A standard soprano ukulele has an average length of 13 inches while the guitar’s range is from 24 to 25.5 inches.

Because of its small size, playing the ukulele requires less of a stretch since the frets are closer to each other compared to the guitar. But if your hands are large, you may have a hard time with accuracy, especially if it’s your first time playing the ukulele.

Source: ArtistWorks

Since it’s smaller than the guitar, the ukulele is also lighter. Compare it with an electric guitar and you’ll see a big difference between the two in terms of weight. On average, ukuleles only weight between 8-28 ounces, while electric guitars can weigh around 9-10 pounds. The same can also be said about acoustic and classical guitars. They may be lighter than electric guitars but they will never come close to the lightness of a ukulele.

With that said, ukuleles are easier to carry around especially if you’re always traveling. Traveling with a guitar, on the other hand, can give you a lot of hassle.

Strings: Ukulele vs Guitar

Unlike guitars that use strings made from steel, ukulele uses nylon strings. This means that ukuleles are easier to play with. Steel strings can be hard to play with because they require more finger strength. It takes time to build that kind of finger strength especially if you just learned how to play the guitar.

Ukuleles, on the other hand, are a delight to a musician’s hands. The nylon strings are so much easier to strum with and they only have 4 strings, compared to the 6 found in guitars. Memorizing chord shapes is also a lot easier when playing the ukulele since there are fewer notes. Switching between chords is quicker as well than playing the guitar.

You can visit MusicianAuthority.com to find out how to fine-tune a ukulele and how to pick the best strings.

Price: Ukulele vs Guitar

If you’re to differentiate a ukulele and guitar when it comes to price, the ukulele obviously wins. They’re much cheaper than guitars. You can purchase a standard ukulele for around $20-$80 depending on the quality.

Buying a guitar, on the other hand, can cost you around $150-$200. The price can even go higher, especially if you’re going to buy a professional-quality guitar.

Source: Ukulele Magazine

Style of Music You Can Play With Ukulele

Guitars have a long musical history. We always see them paired with other instruments, but they’re also played as a solo instrument. The guitar has been associated with different types of genres, which is why it’s one of the most popular musical instruments.

Ukuleles, on the other hand, are not as popular as guitars. They’re long associated with traditional Hawaiian music. However, ukuleles are starting to make its way into the big stage and in other genres as well. Pop hits such as “Hey, Soul Sister” by Train and “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz, has made ukuleles popular across the globe.

There are now TV and radio advertising that features the happy sound of the ukulele. There are also musicians that are using ukuleles to play original songs or use it as a solo instrument.

The internet is also full of websites that provide more info for everyone on how to play the ukulele. It’s only a matter of time before the ukulele starts making its way into different types of genres as well.

Source: Ukulele Magazine


They might not be as popular as guitars, but ukuleles are also capable of producing good music. Beginners will probably like ukuleles more because they’re much easier to learn.

The learning curve for the ukulele is a lot easier than that of a guitar. You can start making some good music and play songs, within a few days of practice. Unlike the guitar, the tension of the strings on the ukulele is lower. Not to mention that there are also fewer strings to deal with, making it more convenient for beginners.

If you’re a beginner who wants to learn how to start making music, the ukulele is better suited for you. Ukuleles can give you a good introduction to the world of musical instruments much better than guitars.

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