Best Solid Body Electric Ukulele

The 5 Best Solid Body Electric Ukuleles In 2023

The vast majority of people who have never played a ukulele believe it to be one size fits all acoustic instrument that one picks up at a gift shop to play Hawaiian music. This is not an accurate representation of the ukulele as an instrument at all, as it comes in several different sizes and methods of amplification.

[ps2id id=’solid-body-ukulele-1′ target=”/]What Is A Solid Body Ukulele?

While an acoustic model is most common, solid body ukuleles are a great option, especially for gigging professionals or recording artists who would rather plug into an amp or directly in the console.

Acoustic or acoustic-electric ukuleles have larger, hollow bodies and a hole under the strings that allows the sound to resonate in the wood and amplify through the hole. With a solid body, there is no such hole or acoustic amplification. It can be thought of as a combination between an electric guitar and ukulele, and when it is unplugged it will also sound like an unplugged electric guitar.

Just like an electric guitar, a solid body ukulele uses pickups to be played through an amplifier. However, once it is being played, it still sounds very much like a ukulele, only with the sound control options that an electric guitarist has: effects pedals, amplifier varieties, and easy DAW recording.

Though it still is, and sounds like, a ukulele, a solid body uke does have a slightly more guitar-esque sound to it, especially when being used with effects pedals or added gain. Here is a video that demonstrates the sound of a solid body electric ukulele:

[ps2id id=’solid-body-ukulele-2′ target=”/]The Top 10 Solid Body Electric Ukuleles

1. Kala Maple Solid Body Tenor Ukulele

Solid Body Electric Ukulele

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Kala is a flagship brand for ukuleles of all kinds and that includes their line of solid body models. This tenor size, with the maple body, is an exceptional instrument with tremendous bang for your buck. For under $400, you receive a ukulele made with premium wood and fantastic pickups, and a preamp that will make connecting to an amplifier straightforward.

It comes fitted with highly stable tuners that are reliable and will keep your ukulele in tune. There is also a Graph Tech NuBone nut and saddle for a lovely tone and better string performance. A soft shell gig back is also included with your purchase!

Reviewers have noted the sensitivity and fine tuning control of the volume and tone knobs. One user said, “It may not have a conventional look but it has sensitive tone and volume controls that make it easy to get authentic uke tones through an amp.”

Key Specs

Body: Maple
Fretboard: Fiber composite, okoume neck
Size: Tenor (3rd size)
Electric: Yes, solid body
Color: Natural finish
Warranty: Sweetwater’s 2-year total confidence
Accessories: Gig bag
Dimensions: 28 in. x 11 in. x 4 in. (711.2 mm x 279.4 mm x 101.6 mm)
Weight: 4 lb. (1.81 kg)

2. Kala Acacia Solid Body Tenor Ukulele

Solid Body Electric Ukulele

This tenor ukulele from Kala is nearly identical to the previous model in every way, except that its body is made of acacia rather than maple. Maple is a widely used material that is known for its clarity. It sounds amazing and is reliable. Acacia is a wood found only in the Pacific and is very similar to koa wood, the traditional wood used for ukuleles. Thus so, the Kala acacia solid body sounds slightly more like an acoustic ukulele than its maple counterpart.

Your decision will be made based on sound preference, if you want a more versatile tone then go with the maple, if you want a tone closer to a traditional ukulele then go with acacia.

Reviewers have again noted the quality of tone knobs, since they have the same electronics, as well as its intonation. One reviewer said, “Here are the reasons for a 5-star review: budget friendly, good electronics, quality build for the price, and stays in tune pretty well even after a lot of hard driving picking/strums.”

Key Specs

Body: Acacia
Fretboard: Fiber composite, okoume neck
Size: Tenor (3rd size)
Electric: Yes, solid body
Color: Dark natural finish
Warranty: Sweetwater’s 2-year total confidence
Accessories: Gig bag
Dimensions: 28 in. x 11 in. x 4 in. (711.2 mm x 279.4 mm x 101.6 mm)
Weight: 3.54 lb. (1.61 kg)

3. Flight Centurion Solid Body Tenor Ukulele

Solid Body Electric Ukulele

This is a beautiful ukulele made by the Slovenian instrument company, Flight. The Centurion is built with a body in the style of a Gibson Les Paul, with a lovely vintage sunburst finish that makes your ukulele look even more like an electric guitar. It still sounds and plays very much like a ukulele, however, and is in a tenor size with a real bone nut and fixed bridge to keep its strings especially stable and well-spaced.

The Centurion isn’t cheap, costing over $300, but it is well worth the price given its quality and gorgeous design. It comes with a gig bag as well, giving you more of a reason to consider purchasing!

Reviewers compliment the Centurion’s guitar-esque sound, especially when played through an overdrive pedal. One review said, “It’s a mini Les Paul, but half the price.”

Key Specs

Body: Maple and mahogany
Fretboard: Mahogany
Size: Tenor (3rd size)
Electric: Yes, solid body
Color: Vintage sunburst
Warranty: None
Accessories: Gig bag
Dimensions: 30 in. x 13 in. x 5 in. (762 mm x 330.2 mm x 127 mm)
Weight: 7.13 lb. (3.23 kg)

4. Mahalo EUK-200 Solid Body Soprano Ukulele

Solid Body Electric Ukulele

This ukulele by Mahalo has a uniquely minimal design. Vaguely in the shape of a Gibson Les Paul, it has a cutaway in its body shape to give you easy access to the high frets. It sounds amazing when played through an amplifier and comes fitted with an onboard preamp with volume and tone controls. It is also a concert size, rather than a tenor like the others, meaning it is a slightly smaller ukulele.

Costing slightly under $300, this ukulele is right in the middle of the typical price range for solid-body electric ukuleles.

Reviewers appreciate its excellent sound when played through an amplifier. One said, “It’s a beautiful instrument with fantastic sound paired with our little 2-channel Fender amp. Hard body electric ukuleles are hard to find, and this one didn’t disappoint.”

Key Specs

Body: Mahogany and okoume
Fretboard: Rosewood
Size: Concert (2nd size)
Electric: Yes, solid body
Color: Brown
Warranty: None
Accessories: Gig bag
Dimensions: 23.43 in. x 8.35 in. x 1.97 in. (595.12 mm x 212.09 mm x 50.04 mm)
Weight: 1.69 lb. (0.77 kg)

5. Flight Pathfinder Solid Body Ukulele

Solid Body Electric Ukulele

The Pathfinder is another tenor ukulele by Flight that is made in the style of a Fender Stratocaster rather than a Gibson Les Paul. It looks amazing and has great pickups that sound awesome when being played through an amplifier.

It also comes with a soft shell gig bag included and is a great deal that will cost you just under $300. Consider buying the Flight Pathfinder!

Like the Centurion, reviewers note the Pathfinder is best for players looking for a sound with more guitar in it. One review said, “This wonderful ukulele is great for blues and rock with overdrive, only works plugged in, and sounds more like a guitar than a ukulele.”

Key Specs

Body: Basswood
Fretboard: Maple
Size: Tenor (1st size)
Electric: Yes, solid body
Color: Black
Warranty: None
Accessories: Gig bag
Dimensions: 30.47 in. x 13.78 in. x 4.92 in. (773.94 mm x 350.01 mm x 124.97 mm)
Weight: 6.64 lb. (3.01 kg)

[ps2id id=’solid-body-ukulele-3′ target=”/]FAQs

What is a solid body ukulele?

A solid body ukulele is an electric ukulele that is not hollow and does not feature a hole for resonation, meaning that it plays very quietly acoustically and is meant to be played through an amplifier.

Should I buy a solid body ukulele?

A solid body ukulele is a great instrument for anybody, however they are especially useful for gigging musicians who need the volume capability of playing through an amplifier, as well as using effects pedals. Solid body ukuleles are also a great option for recording artists who want to plug directly into their console or computer.

How expensive are solid body ukuleles?

Despite occupying a rather niche area in the ukulele market, solid body ukuleles aren’t extremely expensive as their price range is between $200-400, which is in line with acoustic-electric ukuleles.

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