New 2013 Islander Models

New Islanders are in and they are beautiful!

This batch sports wood bindings, bevels, and all kinds of really tasty features. They feel great, look great, and sound great. What more can you want? Oh, more money to buy one? Well, work on that because these are the best Islanders ever! Here’s a sample of 6 new models from Kanilea’s Islander line.

Comments 13

  1. Beautiful ukes and I thought the nicest sounding one was actually the least expensive. I’m not a big fan, though, of this trend of “low cost” lines of ukes creeping up into the mid-to-high cost ranget. When I bought my first Pono in ’07 it was $325. The Kanile’a K-1 Tenor I bought new in ’08 was $799. Today a Pono is pushing $1K and a Kanile’a is closing in on $2K, sometimes exceeding that figure. I thought Islander was Kanile’a’s low-cost range but one of these new models is priced close to what I paid for my solid koa Kanile’a tenor 5 years ago. I hope Kala doesn’t jump on this boat or there will be no quality ukes at affordable prices left for beginners or to take on camping trips, beach trips, etc.

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    I think it’s a combo of them offering a higher quality and money being worth less. But all these companies have a wide range of prices depending on options. It’s not like because a few models get into a higher price point the whole line is that price.

  3. When are you guys getting these online? Or in store too, I would love to drive up there again!!

  4. I take back my comment, I didn’t read the whole article, I was just so excited that you guys have them now.

  5. There’s so little information on these new models. I would guess that the flame maple is a laminate but I would hope that the bamboo is all solid? Is the gloss coating anything like what Kanilea uses? In my opinion, the slothead models are way overpriced for a laminate. The others aren’t too costly until you require adding the $69 case. The Islander website has never been updated since the release of the original models. I had been looking forward to seeing great things from the Islander line but they seem to have lost their way.

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  6. Andrew: I notice that in the video a title comes up close to the end indicating that Corey is playing an Islander SS-4-C; and yet this instrument does not seem to exist elsewhere? What’s going on here?
    Also upon checking out the flame maple concert Islander, unless I’m mistaken, the Details given are for a tenor uke. Is the recording actually the concert size or mistakenly a repeat of the tenor? Finally, are these all of the new Islander’s for this year or are more new entries coming? Do you know what they will be? RM

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      Sorry, right after I posted this I went on vacation and just got back. I will look into this and edit my response soon.

  7. I have now carefully compared the recordings of the two flame maple ukes and I am convinced they are the same and it is the tenor uke that is recorded twice.
    I would say to Ken, Islanders have always had musicality and playability going for them, I agree on the price comment but assume that a $600 uke would not be a laminate. Be that as may, at the moment we don’t have correct or complete information here. Let’s not be too hasty to condemn until we do. RM

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      Hi Rolland, This video shows the tenor flame maple followed by the concert. You can see the physical size difference. They are definitely not the same.
      The top on the more expensive model is solid acacia or solid spruce. The side bevel alone would be a $300-$500 upgrade with a US builder because it is a very lengthy process. Same goes for this style of cutaway. Because it’s done in China doesn’t mean it took less time or craftsmanship. We list those two models at the minimum price we are allowed and the give a free case that retails for over $100. Everyone can judge value and share opinions though and we appreciate your input and exchange of ideas.

  8. Thanks Andrew, appreciate the additional info. Hope you had a refreshing vacation.
    I’m sorry, I should’ve been more specific. The videos I was listening to were those reached via clicking on the Islander tenor and concert flame maples in the new products section of your home page. I was trying to get a longer sample of the concert than is available on the Review page. The concert is conceivably a purchase item for me — though I would really like to find a solid spruce top with a laminate rosewood body — such as was previously available if one forgave a spruce top that was not, alas, solid in the previous Islander line. I’m looking for a beach/camp/travel uke that is still a serious performing instrument. RM

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      Oh, I’m sorry. At the ukulele site. Thanks, I’ll fix that. There may be one like you want coming.? Don’t fear the laminate though. All of their ukes sound good, and that’s the main thing. thx Rolland!

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