A Short History
The Martin ukulele family are considered amongst the finest made ukes. German emigrant C.F. Martin is the man originally behind the success of these instruments. Martin had his own company that was selling various musical instruments since 1833.
The main product was (and still is) guitars, where the company excelled. Thankfully the company diversified into the ukulele market also. In 1907, they developed their interest in ukes and this interest led on to them making these extraordinary models, which came onto the market in 1916. They are generally made from the high quality Hawaii Koa wood, an expensive but ideal wood for the instrument.
A Highly Thought-of Brand
As mentioned, this series of ukes are synonymous with quality. Martin used certain techniques to make his ukuleles different from the other conventional brands present on the market. The brand had sold well between 1930’s and 1940’s. Now again a new interest has developed, with an increase in the demand for those vintage and traditional varieties.
Why These Stand Out
The makers strive for guaranteed quality. They pay attention to each minute detail that may affect its performance. Martin introduced different styles ranging from Style 0 to 5. The major difference between all these styles is the way of binding. The greater the number, the more bindings in the ukuleles, so style 5 contains the highest number of bindings in it.
Following is the general overlook of all the selection.
Style 0 and 1
Style 0 and 1 are relatively simple and are made for beginners and amateur enthusiasts. The style 0, like toe OXK pictured at the top, is made solely from mahogany while the style 1 is also made with Koa wood. The style 0 is very simple in its design with a simple ring around its sound hole. The style 1 is very close to style 0. You can get one made in these both styles starting at around $300.
Style 2 and 3
The style 2 and 3 are higher-end models, usually made for the professional player. They have an elegant and stylish look and also have a higher number of bindings. They are easily available in good condition between $2,000 and $3,000.
Style 4 and 5
The style 4 is not yet available but the style 5 is extraordinary. They are the dream selection of many a uke-lover . They are high-class, with beautiful and elegant design with top-notch performance.
Following are some of the comments from customers on amazon:
“I pre-ordered the Martin 0XK.. and I love the sound. I prefer it over my Cordoba 25CK. It is a little heavier than you would expect it to be, but it doesn’t distract when you play it. Quality is excellent. I don’t have any complains about it. If you like the Martin HPL guitars then you are going to like the 0XK. If you are looking for a ukulele you can take with you to the beach or camping, this one is a better choice.” Read more reviews here.
Martin ukulele have style, elegance and high quality. You won’t find these products to be cheap, so they aren’t aimed at most beginners. If you want to buy quality on a budget consider Lanikai or Kala. Cordoba offer similar quality and pricing.
If you do have a budget that allows it, or need a professional standard instrument, these are a superb choice – among the best available.