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Martin Tenor Ukulele Fluorocarbon Strings (M620)
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About this item
- Excellent tuning stability
- Easy playing feel
- Warm & clear tone
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From the manufacturer
A Martin isn’t just a guitar. It’s playable history; part of a long line of legendary instruments stretching back to the company’s beginnings in 1833. Our guitars were strummed by Civil War soldiers around campfires, helped shape the sound of modern music at the turn of the 20th century, and were played by music’s first superstars like Jimmie Rodgers and Gene Autry. Decades later, Martins floored the crowd at Woodstock, then took center stage on MTV Unplugged, and can be heard on countless classic and contemporary songs across all genres of music.
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|Item Dimensions||4.72 x 5.91 x 4.72 inches||4.25 x 0.5 x 5.5 inches||4.5 x 4.5 x 0.2 inches||4.5 x 4.5 x 0.2 inches||4.5 x 4.5 x 0.2 inches||4.5 x 4.5 x 0.2 inches|
|Size||Tenor 22-25, Ukulele, Polygut||Standard||—||1 Set||1 Pack||—|
Martin's Ukulele Strings provide an easy playing feel, excellent tuning stability, and a consistent, clear tone. Made from clear fluorocarbon, these strings are light enough to strum and pick easily but strong enough to hold tunings. Designed to produce a warm, mellow tone, these tenor-gauge strings provide excellent tuning stability and playability so your ukulele can stand up to rigorous practice and performance schedules. This pack of professional-grade strings will last through long sing-alongs, late-night practice sessions, and plenty of performances. It's an ultra-reliable set of strings that you can take on tour or keep in the studio. Whether you're a beginner or professional musician, this set of ukulele strings will help you play to your potential. Lead a sing-along around the campfire or provide the background music while the sun sets at the beach. With these ukulele strings, you'll be able to play to your heart's content.
With this pack, you'll receive 4 tenor-gauge ukulele strings designed for optimal playing performance. The A string measures 0.0220", the E string measures 0.0284", the C string measures 0.0340", and the G string measures 0.0251". This total set of ukulele strings features a tension of 55.3, making it easy to get a warm, mellow tone with an ultra-flexible feel.
Martin Guitar has been producing high-quality, musician-choice instruments and accessories since 1833. The Martin Fluorocarbon Ukulele Strings are the real deal—not an imitation. Discover your instrument's true voice with this professional-grade string pack.
Reviewed in the United States on December 15, 2020
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Now my novel of a review begins. It is a story filled with discovery, love, bad decisions, regret, hope, reunion, a happy ending, and opens up for the unknown future. I hope you read it all, because I kind of have gone from a total ukulele noob to kind of a more knowledgeable and experience player, and I hope that my review will give you some insight into your own preference of strings.
My first ukulele was a cheap Makala MK-P. It was $47 from Austin Bazaar fulfilled by Amazon. I knew that factory strings on this uke was terrible, and ordered a separate set of strings with it. From what I've researched online, people everywhere rave about the Aquila strings. However, being a cheapo, I got this Martin M600s because it is almost half the price of a set of Aquila. Since the order was over $25, the Martins qualified as an "add-on" item.
I loved my Makala - it played perfect, and with the M600 strings it had a wonderfully sweet, bright, and clear sound, despite being all laminate.
Fast forward 1 months - I now own 3 more ukes: Kala ASLAS (Solid lacewood with solid spruce top), Kala GACT (golden acacia concert travel/thinline), Pono MS (mahogany soprano). With two more on the way: Kala Solid Acacia Tenor, Islander Acacia Tenor. I bought all these from HMS - the Kalas all came with Aquila strings and HMS offers an extra set at discounted price that I usually get. So I have a bunch of Aquila strings.
The above paragraph basically leads to - now all my ukuleles are strung with Aquilas, as most every online sources I have researched praised Aquilas as "the strings to have", and you don't really see much said about these Martin strings. (Aquila and Worth seem to be what everyone talks about on UU and other sites). I have discarded my Martin strings, and got rid of my first ukulele, the Makala Pineapple, as I had better ukes, and thought I had better strings.
However, I felt like my ukuleles weren't playing the sounds that I want or sound the way I thought they'd sound (except my Kala soprano with solid spruce top, that thing is bright as duck)I also felt that they weren't really good with finger picking or classical solos - the nylgut-esque material of the Aquila kind of sticks to your hands, or is easy to get caught in your fingernails if you are a fingernail picker (like a classical guitarist, which I am not because I dislike long grey nasty fingernails, no offense). Still, I blamed the fault to my lack of skills and perhaps improper ukulele setup, because, well, Aquila is like ukulele string god.
Recently, I decided to purchase more Martin strings to put on my Kala ASLAS, because Aquila + solid spruce top + soprano size = ear piercing high shrill sound. Since Amazon sells M600 as "add-on" items, I bought a ukulele song book + 3 sets of these martins.
Long story short: I have just now restrung all my soprano ukues with these Martin M600s, and THEY ARE FANTASTIC. I have fallen in love with ukulele all over again. Sure, the Aquila is bright, happy, and bouncy sounding that is really good for strumming, I feel like they aren't really suited for the smaller size ukes (soprano and perhaps even concert). One of the things I felt was that my concert sounded more clear and pure, with each string singing beautifully when strummed, and that sopranos sounded muddy in comparison. I thought it was just the difference between the two sizes. HOWEVER, with the M600s, my sopranos sound MUCH better. When strummed you can feel and hear each string contributing to the overarching harmony. It is truly beautiful. Also, these clear nylon strings have made arpeggios and classicals much easier and pleasurable to play. Also they sound better.
With the M600 my ukes have lost a bit of the bounciness that the Aquila gives. However, they were already very uke-sounding ukuleles to begin with, now they sound much more balanced. Below you will find what I thought about the M600 on my ukes:
Pono Mahogany Soprano:
To be honest, I was really disappointed with this Pono when first got it, and I expected the most of it out of the three I have, because Kala is just a cheap brand made in China. Pono is still made in China, but they have their own factory (Kala shares factory space with Lanikai and many other uke makers), own training and culture, and they are all inspected and set up in Hawaii at the Koolau factory. However, there was nothing special with the sound - with stock strings it sounded dead, and with Aquilas it sounds bouncy and bright but not as fun as the Kala soprano.
With the M600, I can finally understand why mahogany soprano ukuleles were so so so popular back then. The factory strings really muted out the sweet and docile tone, while the Aquila strings overrode the tone with its own bright bouncy sound. However, with the M600 everything is balanced and nice. I can really hear the wood sing!
Putting M600 on my Pono also took care of some weird issues I had with tuning and buzzing. Now the friction tuners work wonderfully and I actually love them now (before the M600s, I was ready to swear off of friction tuner ukes for the rest of my life). The pono now strums and picks beautifully, sounding sweet and clear as ever.
Kala Soprano Lacewood:
It is now less edgy, THANK GOODNESS! This uke sounded so bright that videos of it causes my speakers to buzz. Now it still have that hard, clear spruce tone, minus the over-bounciness and edginess. It is still a bit bright, but compliments the mellow Pono perfectly.
Tuning and playability have also improved, just as with the Pono. I must sound like I work for Martin but swear I don't. With the Kala I always had problem with the E string staying in tune (even took apart the friction tuners, put together and restrung, and tightened the screw). However, after restrung with M600 it has stayed in tune since!
Anyway, these are awesome. Aquilas are over-used everywhere now and I think people are realize it is just a hype. Aquila strings really make lower end ukuleles sing, such as with the Makala Dolphine, that the bounciness works very well with the dolphine's plastic body. However, if you have a solid instrument, Aquila does not really add much to it. Even my Makala Pineapple, now that I think about it - I had so much fun with it BECAUSE it was strung with the martins! After I got my other ukes (remember, they came with extra sets of Aquilas), I restrung my Makala with the Aquilas, and quickly lost interest in the Makala.
I took off one star because the two smallest strings were packaged in the wrong envelopes. The gauge of the G and A strings is very similar so it would be easy not to catch the error, but I read about it on a ukulele forum. It said that Martin had been informed of the mistake but hasn't corrected it. In the set I received, the G string was in the envelope Labeled A and the A string was in the envelope labeled G. Easy enough to correct if you know about it: holding the ukulele in playing position, the thinnest string (A) should be on the bottom and the next to thinnest string (G) should be on the top.
One thing I really liked was the packaging. Each string is in it's own clearly labeled paper envelope inside the larger plastic package. As a new ukulele player, changing strings for the first time, this packaging made it simple and straight-forward. No chance for confusion about which string was for which note.
The strings sound great, I prefer fluorocarbon strings to nylon or nyl-gut. I think they are softer on the fingers especially for me as a beginner. They have a nice warm tone, they give me that happy stereotypical ukulele sound that I love. There's always the settling period after putting new strings on an instrument but these seem to be settling in quickly.
I'll probably re-order these the next time I need to put strings on a soprano size ukulele.
Top reviews from other countries
Been retired for a while, now, so I can!
My hands are big, but weakened by arthritis, which is why I've moved to Ukulele from guitar. Can't fret the Dobro reliably any more, had to give it away...
So it's not my mighty muscles doing the damage. And reading the reviews on this page it seems that many others are wearing these Martin wound strings rapidly.
After changing out the frayed set of Martins, I watched for wear - and it was evident after a week that this set was the same. Nothing to lose, so a drop of Cyanoacrylate 'Super' Glue was applied to the wear spots in an attempt to keep the windings together. This worked, sorta. But the sound was less defined, and the wear only slowed down, did not stop. Not a proper fix, really.
The Living Water fluorocarbon strings were recommended, and these have no wound strings at all!
Fitted those, and loved their sound and feel.
Left them on to see how they were wearing - and they didn't! The tone and feel still seemed the same a whole year later, so they were swapped for a new set, which did not change the tone and feel that I could detect. A whole year! So we can recommend Living Water strings . . .
Also Worth Fluorocarbon strings (ASIN B014DUAR6O) - again, no 'wound' strings in the set - these do not sound or feel identical to the Living Water strings, but very very similar. They too last as long as one would want.
So the answer would appear to be to buy un-wound fluorocarbon strings. The windings are the weak spot, certainly on these Martins.
I wanted to try out those Aquila Red Series strings - so I bought the baritone set. The unwound strings looked strange in red but sounded great.
However, the wound Aquila Red series strings ALSO began to fall apart over the low frets (the most fretted region) within 2 weeks. I was quite cheesed off as these were expensive strings. I checked the frets - but they are all super smooth and shiny - so not at fault.
I own loads of guitars and quite a few ukes so I know to change strings - and read the Aquila Red series special instructions for fitting them - this failure is not because of that.
Anyway, I bought the Martin baritone set to try out - and immediately put on the wound strings, but left on the Aquila Red unwound 1st & 2nd strings.
Such a difference ! The Martin wound strings have lasted really well. I just bought a new set of Martins and changed all the strings, early November. The first set of wound Martin strings were actually still surviving well BUT my boy was playing in a school concert on his uke - so I wanted a new set of strings on it, so it sounded the best, without the risk of embarrassing string-breakages on the day. The clear unwound strings sound almost as good & loud as the Aquila Red unwound strings to me, but my son (now 9.5yrs old) didn’t notice the difference.
If you look at various brands for baritone strings, you will find the composition of the wound strings varies a lot. I think Martin’s choice of steel wound for the 4th string and aluminium wound for the 3rd string (hope I’ve got that right !) is the best choice in the end, even if for a 4 string set, having 3 types of string doesn’t sound a great idea. The do work well, sound great AND last really well.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom 🇬🇧 on September 23, 2019
Not Good: Rather short; C string broke on restringing before reaching tuning.
First time I've ever had this in years of fitting strings. Afraid I'm back to usual brand.