A tenor ukulele is one of four popular sized ukuleles that are ideal for performances as well as hobbies because of its rich, fuller, and higher-pitched sound that can be played on its 15+ fret ukulele neck.
It can be hard to choose the best tenor ukulele. But don’t worry, we have done the hard work for you. We found 10 of the best tenor ukes out there. So you can make your decision easily.
A Brief About Tenor Ukulele
Tenor model ukuleles are very popular because they are a good size and sound great. They are easy to play, even if your hand is small, and they are easy to travel with. They also produce a bright sound. In this article, we will look at a different brand of tenor ukulele and what makes it special.
Top 10 Best Tenor Ukulele Review
1. Cordoba 20TM-CE
The Cordoba ukulele is a well-known and popular brand known for its high-quality instruments. This ukulele is made with a mahogany body and finished with a satin finish. The rosewood fingerboard not only makes it look great but also sounds great.
The ukulele has 4 nylon strings which make bright, soothing sounds that last for a while. It also looks good, especially the headstock with the tuning pegs. The Cordoba 20TM has a built-in equalizer with a standard jack-plug so you can easily connect it to an amplifier or tune it.
- Great build and sound
- Playable both acoustically and electrically
- Comes with a cool gig bag
- Comparatively heavier (5 lbs)
2. Fender Rincon
Fender is a company that makes high-quality ukuleles. One of our favorites is the Fender Rincon Tenor Ukulele. It has a cool look, with an iconic Fender guitar Headstock on it. It’s made from a wood called Ovangkol, which gives it a rustic look.
This ukulele has four nylon strings, which are attached to a bridge that makes it easier to play. It also comes with a pre-amp and EQ system that lets you tune and amplify the sound. The amplified sound still sounds like the original tone, thanks to the Fishman Electronic system.
This ukulele is very lightweight – only 5 grams (or 0.011 lbs.), which makes it easy to carry around and play.
- Exotic looking and great sound
- Playable both acoustically and Electrically
- Volume is comparatively low
3. Enya EUT-M6
This acoustic ukulele is not only impressive looking, but it also produces amazing tone. This ukulele is popular among teachers and musicians because it has warm, resonant, clear, and sustaining sounds. These sounds are perfect for teaching purposes and live performances.
This ukulele has a solid mahogany body with an aesthetically designed fingerboard and unique headstock. The cutaway is deep enough to play high notes with precision and ease. It comes with the famous D’Addario nylon strings and a gig-bag.
- Unique and elegant looking
- Great for beginners as well as performers
- Gig-bag and strings are of great quality
- Comparatively heavy (5.3 lbs.)
4. Martin Smith UK- 712T-N
The Martin Smith UK- 712T-N is a great acoustic ukulele for both beginners and experts. The sapele mahogany body with synthetic gut Aquila strings (High-quality strings made of nylon) produces a warm and rich tone that feels good to play.
The metal gear heads help you to have a smooth and accurate tuning experience. This is an essential feature for beginner musicians, as they often have trouble tuning properly.
Although this is a full-acoustic ukulele, it comes with a gig-sack, tuner, strap, spare strings, and a chord book. This is a great deal, especially because the tuner can be so helpful; many uke players prefer an all-acoustic ukulele, so having a clip-on tuner is very useful.
- Great built with an elegant finish
- Useful accessories included
- Amazing tone
- Fingerboard/frets might be a bit sharp for the beginners
5. Enya EUT-X1
The Second Enya Ukulele in our list also comes with an accessory pack that includes a ukulele case, strap, extra string set, capo, sand shaker, picks, polish cloth. This will help you play your ukulele and keep it in good condition.
The body of the ukulele is built with high-quality koa wood which does not change shape in different temperatures or humidity levels. It doesn’t have a cutaway because it is built to produce warm, rhythmic sounds that you will find appealing.
This ukulele is unique because it has a BT connection which makes the sound better and makes it more comfortable to hold. You can take this ukulele anywhere you want and play it anytime you want!
- All accessories in a package
- High-end metal tuning pegs
- Premium sound
- High-quality D’Addario strings
- High action (strings are a bit high from the fretboard)
6. Oscar Schmidt OU28TE-A-U
This could be the most unique ukulele because of its build and strings. 8 strings paired in 4 enables the ukulele to sound in two octaves and two unison tuning.
Although it produces great sounds with its 8 strings, this guitar might not be suitable for beginners. The tuning can be tricky, so a beginner might not be able to get the sound they want. However, the unique sound produced by 8 strings might entice a beginner to give it a shot.
This ukulele is good for playing rhythm. It has a long neck, but it doesn’t have a cutaway. The built-in EW with a tuner is a bonus because it makes the tuning easier.
- Suitable for live performance
- 8 strings with 2 unison tuning and 2 octaves
- Reverberant and premium sound
- Beginners might find it tricky to tune and play because of its alloy string
7. Kmise KMU26T
This Kmise KMU 26T starter pack is another all-in-one ukulele pack. This budget-friendly ukulele has a mahogany-built body with a walnut fretboard and bridge. It has high-quality carbon nylon strings that can be precisely tuned with pure copper tuning pegs with an 18:1 gear ratio, which is better than the typical tuning pegs that have a 15:1 gear ratio.
This ukulele comes with a tuner, strap, gig-bag, and spare strings. It also has a booklet with Ukulele lessons to get beginners started. This ukulele is perfect for music lovers because it is an all-in-one pack.
The Kmise KMU26T bundle is one of the best ukuleles for beginners because it has many great qualities and it is also affordable.
- Includes all Ukelele accessories
- Very affordable price
- Great ukulele for beginners
- Body finishing is not as desirable
8. Cordoba 21T
This ukulele is called the Cordoba. It is beautiful to look at and sounds great. The top of the body is made from solid spruce wood and the rest of the body is made from striped ebony. The matte finish makes it look even better. The tone is amazing, thanks to the Pau Ferro fingerboard and Aquila strings. The abs binding with a rosette wooden seal gives it a classic, premium look.
This acoustic guitar is popular with modern musicians. They like it because it is lightweight and easy to use. You can take it anywhere and play it anywhere.
- Classic premium looking
- Great sound quality
- Robust built and good Portability
- Very few cases of strings action being too high
9. Cordoba 15TM
The Cordoba 15TM has a fretboard that is beginner-friendly and well-spaced. This makes it easier for beginners to play. The ukulele also produces rich and fuller sounds because of the mahogany top, sides, and back. It has a lustrous satin finish, shiny tuning pegs, and abs binding. This makes the ukulele look good and also helps it stay in tune longer.
- High quality structure
- Great quality sound
- Great value for the price
- Some has reported fret-buzzing
10. KALA LTP-MH
The Kala LTP- MH is one of the most popular and sought-after ukuleles on the market. This model is unique because it has a mahogany build with white floral body art that resembles traditional Swiss folk art.
The fretboard of LTP-MH is made of walnut. This gives a very smooth feeling when you’re playing. Kala is well known for its near-perfect measurements, and all the features of this ukulele reflect that trait.
This ukulele is perfect for beginners because it is affordable, well-built, and easy to use. It also looks great and sounds bright. It comes with a few essential accessories, such as a gig-bag, clip-on tuner, and beginner’s guide booklet. You can also use the free Kala app to learn songs on the ukulele.
- Great looking with unique artwork
- Fine built, durable
- Great tone
- Nothing worth mentioning
What Features of Tenor Ukulele Define the Best Selection Criteria: How to Choose the Perfect Tenor Ukulele
You don’t need to be an expert to choose the best ukulele for you. Just think about what you want in a ukulele and what you’re willing to spend. Then look at some of the factors that affect sound, durability, loudness, and performance.
You can choose one of the ukuleles from our list. We have carefully screened and picked these for you. However, if you want to make sure that the ukulele you choose meets your needs, we have listed some factors you should consider below.
The type of wood used to build a ukulele is the most important factor to consider when you are evaluating it. The most common types of wood used in ukuleles are mahogany, walnut wood, spruce, rosewood, Koa, Maple, Ebony, and Mangowood.
Mahogany is a type of wood that is often used in ukuleles because it looks natural and is lightweight. Mahogany has sweet sound and good mid-range tones. Ebony is darker than mahogany and a bit heavier, so it is often used for fretboards or bridges. Mahogany neck is not as common, but walnut wood is sometimes used.
Spruce is a brightly colored wood that produces a brighter, more balanced tone. If you want an even more beautiful sound, Cedarwood can be used. Koa wood is native to Hawaii and gives your instrument a Hawaiian sound while also protecting it from temperature and humidity fluctuations.
There are a lot of things to think about when you are choosing a type of wood for your ukulele. For example, different woods will create different tones and weights. You should choose a common type of wood, like spruce, cedarwood, or mahogany. Do not choose something like mango wood, even if it is cheaper.
Ukuleles that sound good are more motivating to play. They also make it easier and more enjoyable to play, resulting in a fuller sound. Good build quality is important for ensuring the instrument’s durability and making sure it sounds great.
Tuning Peg Material
Most expensive ukuleles are built with high-end materials. For a budget ukulele, check out the material of the tuning pegs and gear. Most of the time, the material is copper. But sometimes it is plastic. Plastic tuning pegs can be a bit inconvenient for beginners.
If you are buying your first acoustic instrument, a standard tenor ukulele with accessories might be a good choice. This will give you a tuner, a gig bag, and learning DVDs or a booklet.
Solid Wood Ukuleles
Solid wood ukuleles are the ones that are made from a single piece of wood. This makes them sound better and also costs more money. If you have enough money, you can buy an expensive ukulele made of solid wood. It will sound beautiful and may be worth the price.
Check the Originality
Make sure to check the features of the ukulele from its original websites. For example, two types of Fender Rincon Ukuleles caught my attention; one is the original one with the iconic fender headstock, the other one is with a normal headstock. I’m pretty certain that the latter one is a fake. Therefore, keep an eye out for originals vs duplicates.
Frequently Asked Questions About Best Tenor Ukuleles
Can You Put Concert Ukulele Strings on a Tenor?
You can string a concert ukulele with a tenor low G, but there are some things you need to consider. The unwound low G will likely be too thick to fit in the nut slot. You can either cut the nut slot deeper or use the thinner diameter wound low G. You’ll want to avoid cutting the wound G string.
How Much Should I Pay for a Good Ukulele?
You should expect to spend between $50 and $150 on your first ukulele. When looking for a ukulele, it is important to find a brand you can trust. Brands like Lanikai and Cordoba are known for their relatively inexpensive instruments for those who are entering their first round of ukulele basics. Ukuleles come in many shapes and sizes.
Is a Tenor Uke the Same As Concert?
The tenor ukulele is the next size up from the concert ukulele. The scale, or length, of the tenor is about two inches longer than the concert. The neck is also a little wider, and it is a little heavier than the concert. This makes the tenor better for fingerpicking.
What Is the Difference Between a Concert Ukulele and a Tenor Ukulele?
A tenor ukulele is a ukulele that is in between a baritone and a concert ukulele in size. A concert ukulele is smaller than a tenor but larger than a soprano.
Where Do You Strum a Tenor Ukulele?
Position your index finger just above the g-string on your ukulele. This is where you will get the best sound when you strum. Every ukulele has its own sweet spot for strumming.