Should I Get a Soprano or A Concert Ukulele?

Two of the most common versions of the ukulele are soprano and concert size. Each one provides different advantages for beginner players. The smaller soprano is great for small hands while the concert offers more variety in notes. Either size, you should get a ukulele!

Choosing Between Soprano or Concert Ukulele for Beginners

To a beginner, all ukuleles may look exactly the same. Each size has different features that will appeal to players for different reasons. The sound, tone, and how the instrument fits in the hands will all affect your choice. 

Let me explain the main differences between the sizes to help you decide whether to get a soprano or concert ukulele.

What is the Difference Between a Soprano and a Concert Ukulele?

Soprano Ukulele

The soprano ukulele is widely considered to be the standard size. It is the smallest version, and it makes the bright, pingy sound that people generally associate with the stringed instrument.

The standard tuning for a soprano ukulele is GCEA. This is sometimes referred to as “island tuning” because of the instrument’s roots in Hawaii. 

The smaller size and unique lower second C string give this ukulele its bright and unique sound. The instrument looks much like a tiny guitar. But, the sound is brighter because of the different tuning and smaller size.

Concert Ukulele

The concert ukulele is the next size up. It’s bigger than the soprano. It has both a larger body and a longer neck. 

With more length on the neck, the concert ukulele has more frets and can play more notes. There are 12-15 frets on a soprano ukulele while the concert has 15-20 frets. While the concert can play both notes, it is still tuned in the GCAE island tuning.

If you know that you will want to have a fuller sound with more options for lower notes, a concert ukulele might be a better fit for your first uke. Players who are transitioning from guitar might find a larger size more comfortable, as well.

What is the Best Ukulele for Beginners: Soprano or Concert?

The smaller neck on the soprano instrument makes it an ideal starter for younger players with smaller hands. If you are considering buying for a child or young adult, then the soprano ukulele is a great place to start.

Females, who tend to have smaller hands than males, may also find the smaller size of the soprano ukulele appealing. The ease of getting started on the smaller neck can be motivating to new players. 

Many newbies can pick up the instrument and begin playing a song in just one day.

If cost is a factor in your decision, soprano ukuleles are more readily available at lower price points.


The ukulele is a fantastic instrument for beginners, no matter the size. Consider what you would like to get out of your ukulele, like your hand size, the sound, and the price point.

No matter whether you decide to get a soprano or a concert ukulele, know that you are going to have a great time learning this fun instrument!

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