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Vorson Electric Ukulele In-Depth Review

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Most ukuleles follow the same basic design guidelines. Wooden acoustic body, figure-eight shape, nylon strings, etc. The Vorson electric ukulele breaks all the rules, and it does it with style. If you’re looking for a different sound, a different look, or just a fun and exciting new ukulele, this the the uke for you! With steel strings and a look inspired by classic electric guitars, the Vorson electric ukulele is one of the most fun and unique ukuleles on the market.

Here’s our in-depth review!

Overview

The Vorson electric ukulele is unique in many ways. It’s a solid body electric ukulele, with a very different design than acoustic-electric ukuleles. Rather than taking on a traditional ukulele look, its look is modeled after classic electric guitars like the Fender Stratocaster. It is also one of the few steel string ukuleles out there, which gives it a unique sound.

With a tenor scale and an adjustable action, the Vorson is very easy to play for beginners and experts alike. The fully adjustable bridge helps keep intonation spot- on. And while it looks a lot like an electric guitar, it sounds even more like one. If you’re a ukulele player who wants to sound like your favorite classic rock guitar gods, this is the uke to get.

Overall, the Vorson electric ukulele sets its own course. If you’re looking for a traditional ukulele, or a traditional sound, you will not find it in the Vorson. It’s really built more like a small 4-string electric guitar than a standard ukulele. But if you’re a ukulele player looking for something different, it’s a great instrument. It’ll give you a whole new sound without you having to learn a whole new technique. Plus, it’s about as fun as it looks, and that’s pretty fun!

Looks

Vorson has modeled their electric ukuleles off of classic electric guitars that will be familiar to every rock fan. Because it’s a solid body ukulele, the actual shape of the body has very little effect on tone (unlike an acoustic instrument). There are versions of the Vorson that mimic the classic Fender Stratocaster and Telecaster, as well as the Gibson Les Paul. They’re available in a variety of colors and finishes.

The quality of the finish is impressive for such a relatively inexpensive instrument. While they make some minor changes due to copyright issues, each Vorson ukulele really does look like the guitar it was inspired by. The colors on the maple Les Paul models are particularly beautiful, with a classic vintage look. If you want to look like a rock star, the Vorson electric ukulele will definitely help get you there.

Steel Strings

Even with its solid body and rock guitar looks, what really makes the Vorson electric ukulele stand apart from the pack is the fact that it uses steel strings. The vast majority of ukuleles use nylon strings. This is partly due to tradition. Ukuleles originally used gut strings, much like classical guitars. Nowadays, that traditional sound is replicated using nylon (or sometimes fluorocarbon) strings.

You can’t just put steel strings on a normal ukulele, either. They put much more tension on the neck and body than nylon strings. Putting steel strings on a ukulele that’s not designed to use them can be disastrous. The Vorson electric ukulele gets around this by reinforcing the neck and body. This is a very sturdy ukulele, and can handle the extra tension that steel strings create.

Playability

One of the more amazing features on the Vorson electric ukulele is the adjustable truss rod. You usually don’t see this on ukuleles in this price range, and it’s a big plus. It’s probably included in part to help deal with the tension of the steel strings, and it does the job well.

The truss rod makes it very easy to adjust the action. The bridge is also adjustable, so you can fine-tune intonation for each string. These both make the Vorson electric ukulele a very easily playable instrument. Intonation is impeccable, and the neck and frets are quite comfortable.

Ukulele players used to nylon strings will quickly notice that steel strings are tougher on the fingers. One your fretting hand, this will solve itself as calluses build up. But those used to strumming with their fingers should look at using a pick. Not only will it save some wear and tear on your hands, it’ll help you get an even more guitar-like sound.

But don’t worry, a pick isn’t necessary. If you find it too strange or just prefer using your fingers, you’ll get used to the steel strings after a bit of practice. Mark Knopfler, Jeff Beck, and Wes Montgomery all did just fine without a pick!

Pickups and Tone

The big key to the Vorson’s electric guitar-like sound is its pickups. Most electric ukuleles use a piezo pickup, which usually produces a more natural, acoustic-sounding tone. The Vorson, though, uses magnetic pickups, which is what electric guitars use. They sense the vibrations of the steel strings and turn it into an electrical signal, which then gets passed through to the amp.

The Vorson is the only mass-market ukulele that uses magnetic pickups, and it shows. There’s an edginess to the sound that just can’t be replicated by piezo pickups. It also has the same two-pickup configuration as most electric guitars. One is closer to the bridge for a brighter, twangier sound, while the other is near the neck for a rounder, fuller tone. You can select one or the other or both with a simple toggle switch. There’s also a volume and tone knob, again the standard on most electric guitars.

I mentioned it before but it’s very much worth repeating: the fact that the pickups are magnetic means that they require steel strings to work. If you replace the strings with regular ukulele strings, all you’ll hear is silence!

Conclusion

If you’re a ukulele player looking for an electric sound, the Vorson is definitely worth checking out. With a unique design inspired by classic electric guitars, it has a look and sound that has no equal in the ukulele world. It won’t necessarily replace a traditional ukulele, but it’s a great ddition to your ukulele arsenal. And with magnetic pickups and steel strings, it’s a fun way to sound like a rock guitarist without having to learn a whole new instrument.

Published in Electric Ukulele Solid Body Electric Ukulele

2 Comments

  1. Frank V. Frank V.

    Does Vorson make an electric baritone tele style uku

    • Jason Galvin Jason Galvin

      I don’t believe so, not currently anyway. Solid body baritones are not something big on the market right now, but maybe that’ll change.

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