aNueNue ARC III All Solid Custom Tenor Ukulele
This is a really stunning bit of work, and a one-off custom to boot - a flagship for aNueNue to show just how good they can make ukuleles. Undeniably, the price tag is not low, so it had be better be good! Thankfully it passes every test you can thrown at it. The sustain is the perhaps the most remarkable, although the great big sound and superb clarity run it close.
It really is a lovely looking thing this one-off custom tenor, with a rosewood, ebony and maple layered headstock cap, the layers of which are revealed through the slotted headstock slots. A jet black ebony fingerboard which is beautifully smooth is partnered with a shaped, ebony bridge - in which sits a compensated bone saddle. Separating the all solid back and sides is a strip of rosewood binding, plus a super-thin layer of maple wedged between two layers of ebony - we're talking 1mm thick here pieces of wood - just gorgeous and astonishing levels of detail. The abalone soundhole ring is similarly done, with the iridescent shell layered with mahogany and rosewood. These aren't gaudy details as they're so delicate - you have to take the time to look... but when you do you realise quite how much work has gone into it.
All these words! However, it is easy to write about something so beautiful and we've not even got to the tonewoods yet! The top is made of two pieces of contrasting, wavy and highly flamed rosewood. This shimmers and glows under the gloss finish. Turn the uke over and the solid cocobolo back and sides display more fine and deep grain patterns. Lovely.
The neck of the aNueNue ARC III has a spacious 36mm nut width, with comfortable string spacing and the ideal action set for comfort without buzz or lack of volume - spot on. It sings right the way up the neck, with an astonishing full, deep and yet clear voice, overlapped by complex harmonics as the sustain rings and rings before gently ebbing away.
There is one criticism from me, no case. So... not wanting that to spoil the day - I'll supply it with a hard case.
This is a very special ukulele and it exudes luxury, begs to be played and takes on a life of its own as it leaps into action at the touch of your fingers. A bit good!
Click additional information for a video demo.