Tenor Guitar vs Baritone Ukulele – The Differences

Being a professional-grade musician is not only about playing instruments and recording tracks. What else is a part of it then?

Well, certain technical aspects are crucially involved in making music. One of the hardest and critical things is to select the right instrument.

The guitar is one of the most popular and coolest instruments available. However, it has many different types, as well. Selecting one entirely depends on what you need.

If you want something that is comfortable to play, a ukulele will definitely suit you. In this regard, tenor and baritone are the most famous options.

For choosing between both these guitars, it is significant for you to know about them in detail. If you feel confused regarding which one to grab, do not panic, as a tenor guitar vs. baritone ukulele guide is here to end all your confusion.

So, step with us into this world of guitars and get all the information that you always needed.

What Is The Difference Between Tenor Guitar And Baritone Ukulele?

From here onwards, you will get to see a side by side comparison regarding every aspect of both tenor guitar and baritone ukulele. There are numerous points that will make the difference between both these types clear to you.

From size to traditional tuning style, many unique aspects contribute to making these instruments distinct from one another.


Weight Difference

The basic difference when it comes to tenor guitar vs. baritone ukulele is the size and weight of these instruments.

If you want to go for a lighter weight option, the tenor guitar will suit you amazingly well. However, on the other end, the baritone ukulele will relatively feel like a heavy instrument.

Are you still looking for the exact numbers?

Do not worry as we’ll provide as well. If you have an overlook on the weight of guitars, you will get to know that this factor varies from instrument to instrument. This is because of the materials that the makers have used in their making.

But, generally speaking, you will find baritones weighing around two pounds. In contrast, the tenors will generally weigh around 1.5 lbs. or pounds.

However, do remember that each item’s true weight depends upon the dimensions, and you will have to look for the details during the purchase.


The Difference in Size

Speaking of dimensions, another differentiating factor between these instruments is their size. When you talk about the size between tenor and baritone, just like weight, the size of the baritone is bigger as well.

When looking at the size of a guitar, you will have to take a look at the length of the guitar itself and the scale as well. Scale refers to the distance between the nut and saddle. The saddle is that part of the instrument that holds the string on its body while the nut is the opposite end.

The standard size of a baritone ukulele is about 30 inches. The larger size allows this instrument to possess a bigger scale as well. Hence, you will get a scale of 19 inches in this guitar.

Due to the larger scale, it will be easier for you to play the guitar as the area between frets will increase. This will allow your finger to get a larger room.

As for a tenor guitar, the standard size that you are going to get is 26 inches in length. And if we take a deeper look at the length of its scales, the total distance that you will get from the saddle to the nut is almost 17 inches here.



One of the most primary differences between a tenor guitar and a baritone ukulele is the way they are traditionally tuned. Generally, you will tune your tenor guitar in a re-entrant way with high G-string and gCEA tuning.

However, in the case of baritone ukuleles, the traditional sort of tuning requires a lower D-string and DGBE string tuning. This tuning will allow it to be easier for the players to learn the baritone ukulele as the tuning is exactly the same as the alignment of the bottom strings.

However, do remember that all these tuning set-ups are traditional. If you want to try something differently new, you can do it as well.


String Tension

The string tension in the case of baritone ukuleles is about 53 lbs.

However, having a tenor in hands, you will be able to get a string tension of approx. 30 lbs. The reason behind this low string tension is that these guitars generally use nylon strings instead of steel ones.



As the size of a baritone ukulele is larger, you will get bigger wooden panels in it. These panels will allow more sound to reflect.

Moreover, the space for air in such an instrument is also greater. All of this will contribute to making the sound of a baritone louder as compared to a tenor guitar.

If you compare the sounds of both these instruments, the baritone will prove to produce a sound that is closer to a proper guitar. In comparison, a tenor’s sound will be more bright to hear.



Portability is a factor that entirely depends upon the dimensions and weight of the instrument.

As in both these aspects, a tenor guitar is comparatively light and small; it will be easier for the user to move around with this option in hands.


The Difference In Playing

As stated before, the scale of a baritone ukulele is more spacious than a tenor. This will allow the user to play it more comfortably.

Especially if you are someone with relatively bigger hands or fingers, it will be quite comfortable for you to play a baritone.

The Bottom Line

Concluding all the facts and figures mentioned in this comparison featuring tenor guitar vs. baritone ukulele, numerous differences contribute to making these instruments unique in their own way.

From size to weight, tuning, playing difference, and sound, everything about both these guitars have been made clear in this article. If you want to carry something that does not weigh much and is easy to carry while traveling, a tenor should be your priority.

However, if you want a spacious area to play with your finger and a loud sound that is more similar to a guitar, playing your music with a baritone will definitely be wonderful for you.

Juan Stansbury
Juan Stansbury

I'm Juan Stansbury, author and owner of Homerecordio – your ultimate destination for everything about homerecording. With hands-on experience, courses, workshops, and industry research, I offer tips on selecting the best equipment, and mixing and mastering your recordings to achieve professional-quality results at home. Join me on this journey to explore the world of homerecording and music production.

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