Yamaha GL1. The Guitalele was actually launched way back in 1997, but sometimes past there wasn’t a uke orchestra on every corner, so it hardly made waves. But it wouldn’t be the primary time Yamaha has been before the sport, and so, 15 years late, we’re writing about the GL-1.
Body & Neck:
First thing’s first – the Yamaha GL1 isn’t a toy. Despite the budget-friendly tag and therefore the incontrovertible fact that it comes in at around 26” long, it’s an honest little instrument. It features the 17” scale of a tenor ukulele with a solid nato neck that features a nut width of around 1.88”. This neck, which features a snorkeling fretboard and 18 frets, maybe a little cramped, but actually quite comfortable once you get won’t to it.
In addition to scale length, the Yamaha GL1 body itself is additionally very like a tenor ukulele in size, so it should prove easy enough to carry for many players. As for tonewoods, the GL1 is an all-laminated guitalele, with a top made up of spruce, and back and sides made with meranti. This features a satin finish with sophisticated black body binding, finishing it off nicely.
Tuning-wise, Yamaha GL1 features both that of a guitar and ukulele, with an A-D-G-C-E-A tuning. Imagine a daily guitar with a capo sitting on the 5th fret and you’ve got the pitch of the GL1. Of course, you’ll tune this guitalele right down to standard guitar tuning (E-A-D-G-B-E) allowing you to play alongside songs and other guitars more comfortably, yet the string tension is going to be a touch looser when doing this.
It’s a reasonable mini guitar so you can’t expect an excessive amount of in terms of hardware, yet what’s included with the GL1 is reliable. Up top on the slotted headstock may be a set of six open-geared tuning machines, while a snorkeling bridge secures things at the opposite end. The strings that accompany the guitar are a touch cheap and lackluster, so change these once you have an opportunity. The GL1 also arrives with its own gig bag, which is adequate although not particularly protective, so believe an upgrade if you’re traveling further afield.
While half guitar, half ukulele, it’s certainly more of the latter in terms of tone thanks to the body size and better tuning. it’s the brilliant, happy, and slightly tinny sound of a ukulele, while the projection is on par with a tenor uke, as you’ll expect. It’s therefore great as a practice tool or for casual unplugged performances, but it won’t fill an area unless you mic it up. once you consider the worth and therefore the size though, we can’t really complain.
Fun. Great value. Highly usable.
Sound grates after a while. But then it is part uke!
Yamaha GL1 Features:
- Top: Spruce
- Back: Meranti
- Side/Rib: Meranti
- Neck: Nato
- Finger Board: Sonokeling
- Bridge: Sonokeling
- Includes gig bag
Yamaha GL1 Specifications:
- Body Depth: 2 13/16″-2 13/16″ (70-70 mm)
- Finger Board Width (Nut/Body): 1 7/8″ (48 mm)
This particular Yamaha GL1 comes at a price of only 99.99 dollars. If you are interested to buy it, you can get it from here GUITARCENTER.
We also have an article about 5 Amazing Folk Guitars. And if you want to see other ukulele’s/folk guitars you can check these out