Kala KA-15S Review: Best Budget Ukulele Ever!

Are you thinking to purchase a Kala KA 15S ukulele but aren’t sure? well, don’t worry, I am here to help you out. In this informative article, I will do a complete Kala KA-15S review for those who want to know whether this ukulele is worth purchasing or not.

I was getting lots of requests from you guys to create a detailed article on the Kala KA-15S review. So, finally here is my take on the Kala KA 15S soprano ukulele.

What you’ll get in the box

  • A ukulele
  • Carrying soft case
  • Clip on tuner
  • Strap
  • Care and maintenance guide

Kala KA-15S Review

Kala KA-15S on Amazon

Before I begin to review Kala KA 15s Soprano Ukulele, let me tell you I am playing Ukulele for more than 5 years and since that time I have tried lots of Ukuleles. Kala KA 15s is very close to my heart because I purchased this uke at the beginning of my music career.

I still have Kala KA 15s with me, and it is still going well even after 5 years, so this review is going to be completely based on my experience and unlike other reviews you find online, this one is going to be very unbiased.

So, let’s first talk about the history of the Kala brand, and then we will jump over to the actual review where we will talk about durability, wood material, sound output, etc.

Kala Brand History

Kala is among the very old brands in the ukulele world, this brand is more than 35 years old. Kala is a California-based company founded by Michael Upton in 1986 with the sole motive of producing high-quality budget ukuleles.

With time Kala brand has evolved a lot, in the beginning, the Kala brand only used koa wood to make their instrument but with time they have expanded their offerings. Now Kala uses high-quality wood such as mahogany, acacia, and mango.

Kala is well known for producing high-quality and budget-friendly acoustic ukes but let me tell you they also offer electric ukuleles and bass ukuleles.

Kala is not only very good at producing ukuleles but they also care about the environment, they use FSC-certified woods and have a “Green Team” that works on reducing their environmental impact.

I hope that much introduction is sufficient, now let’s jump over to the actual review part of this article.

Kala KA 15S Unboxing Experience

Kala KA-15S Review

The unboxing experience of Kala Ka 15s was pretty good and simple for me, as soon as I received my order from Amazon, I quickly unboxed it, and out of the box, I got a clip-on tuner which was really surprising for me, I wasn’t expecting that at all. I don’t know whether they provide it anymore.

The next thing that you will get is a Strap, overall I liked the quality of the strap, it was packed in plastic. The next thing that you will get out of the box is obviously the soft carrying case, the quality of the case was decent.

Side Note: Some folks told me that they didn’t get the carrying case, so I think they are not providing it anymore but when I purchased this uke a few years back, it was there.

Inside the carrying case, you will see the Ukulele along with some user manual and maintenance guide.

Wood and Body Quality

Kala KA-15S Review

Kala KA 15S ukulele is a budget-friendly uke but that doesn’t mean they have done any compromise with the quality. When it comes to the build quality, Kala KA 15S has the best overall quality if compared to other budget-friendly ukuleles.

The manufacturer has done a very good job, they have made sure that this product meets the highest standards possible. After using Kala KA 15S for more than 5 years, I can assure you that this ukulele is built to last.

If we talk about the material quality, the Kala ka 15s ukulele is made from solid mahogany wood, this helps the instrument in producing a warm and rich tone, and obviously excellent durability.

Even the neck of the ukulele is made from mahogany, which ensures a comfortable playing experience. I was literally surprised to see such quality in this price range. Mostly we see such quality on very expensive ukulele brands, Kala undoubtedly has done amazing quality work.

The overall craftmanship of the ukulele is good, and the attention to detail is amazing.

The use of high-quality materials and construction techniques results in an instrument that looks and sounds great.

Note: Kala also has a Concert (Kala KA 15C) and Tenor Ukulele (Kala KA 15T) if you are interested in buying the bigger ukulele than the soprano then goahead and buy it. The quality is as good as Kala KA 15S and on top of that, it is bigger than the soprano so players with a bigger hand can find it handy.

Kala KA 15C (Concert Ukulele) Check Price on Amazon
Kala KA 15T (Tenor Ukulele) Check Price on Amazon

Sound Production

It is concluded already that the build quality of Kala Ka 15S is excellent, now let’s talk about the sound, it is as important as build quality.

Mostly soprano Ukulele in this price range sound okayish but that’s not the case with Kala KA 15S. It delivers a warm and full sound, amazingly perfect for people who are looking for a traditional Hawaiian sound.

The KA-15S features a solid spruce top and mahogany back and sides, which gives it a rich, full tone.

Since this ukulele has a rosewood fingerboard and bridge, which adds to its overall mellow sound. I would conclude if you are someone looking for a compact ukulele with a warm and rich tone then this one is the best choice.

It is not very loud but that is okay since soprano ukes are generally not very loud. It is probably the best uke that produces traditional Hawaiian sound on a budget.


Kala KA 15S has one of the best strings and that is Aquila Nylgut, and I don’t think I need to say, it is the best sounding strings you can get in such a budget-friendly uke.

Generally, ukuleles have four strings, but there are some ukuleles that come with eight strings as well, but leave that fact aside, the Kala KA 15S ukulele has four strings.

Mostly all types of ukuleles (Soprano, Concert, and tenor) are tuned in the same way, GCEA is the standard tuning in Kala KA 15s. The G string is the top string and the A string is the bottom string.

All the strings are tuned in a linear tuning which means the interval between the strings is all equal.


Kala KA-15S Review

What I have seen in beginners is that they are not too concerned with the quality of the fretboard, fretboard quality also equally matters, and let me tell you Kala KA 15S has the best fretboard among the budge segment ukuleles.

It has a well-crafted mahogany fretboard that is built to last for years. The frets are placed very nicely and evenly, which makes it easy to press down on the strings.

The fretboard has a nice and smooth satin finish and it really feels good to the touch, this also makes it easier for you to slide your fingers up and down the fretboard.

However, since this is a soprano ukulele, players with the big hand may feel inconvenienced in maneuvering their hands on the fretboard.


Kala KA-15S Review

It is no brainer that the quality of tuners has a significant impact on its overall playability. If the quality of tuners is bad then it can make a uke sound so trashy and it is very common among other ukuleles that are available in the same price segment. Well, that’s not the case with our Kala KA 15S because it has excellent tuners with an excellent tuning machine.

It has open-gear tuners and that is according to me the best tuner, it ensures that the instrument will stay in tune no matter how often it’s played.

Another important feature of the Kala KA 15S ukulele’s tuning machines is their design, some ukulele has a peghead tuning machine that has a large gear that meshes with the smaller gear on the tuning post. This can be a real problem and may cause your ukelele to go out of tune.

However, that’s not the case with Kala KA 15 since they use a different design which is known as planetary-geared tuning.

Finish Quality

Kala KA-15S Review

So, the last think I am going to talk about in this Kala KA-15S review is design and finish. I am literally impressed by the design finish of this Ukulele, if you look at it clearly then you will notice that the wood is having a brownish deep shade with a little dark black gain all over the body.

I really appreciate the craftsmanship that went into making this ukulele, really got impressed by the attention to detail, seriously I could never have expected it at this price point. When you see it you will feel like it has a kind of raw wood texture, but is smooth to the touch.

The traditional mahogany construction and satin finish in this ukulele give it a classic look that any ukulele enthusiast will appreciate.

Pros and Cons of Kala KA 15S Ukulele

Now we have covered everything about the Kala KA-15S review, now let’s quickly summarize everything in the Pros and Cons.


  • The biggest plus point of this ukulele is obviously its price. It is a very affordable and budget-friendly ukulele with the very high-quality build quality.
  • Compared to other ukes, this is very lightweight which makes it easier to carry along.
  • The design and Finish quality are really top-notch.
  • You get amazing rich and warm sound out of this uke.
  • Very easy to play for beginners.


  • It might not be very good for the experienced players who are expecting a very good sound.
  • It doesn’t come with a gig bag.

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Now we are at the end of our Kala KA-15S review, in the end, I will like to conclude that this ukulele is highly recommended by my side. I highly recommend this ukulele to anyone who is a beginner and looking for a compact soprano ukulele. It is highly a value-for-money ukulele. This ukulele is way better than most cheap ukuleles available on the market.

I myself using this uke for 5 years and I know it will even last more than that. If you have any suggestions or if you want me to review any other ukulele then do comment down below, I love to hear from y’all.

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