Snail S10C Concert Ukulele - REVIEW

2 Jul 2022

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele - REVIEW

It's been a little while since I looked at this ukulele brand, but to be fair to them, they have always done rather well on the reviews and represent a good alternative option to the normal household names. This is the Snail S10C concert.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele

This model, which is also available in tenor sits in the more serious part of the Snail range insofar as it is made from all solid wood, but not at a price to trouble the wallet as much as much as (say) their 60 series does. In fact, specs wise this one is extremely similar to the very well reviewed SUC-M3 Concert Ukulele, albeit with different decoration and headstock.

That is to say that this is an all solid mahogany concert ukulele made from two pieces on the top, back and sides. Whilst I gave the SUC-M3 a high score I did not that the mahogany was a little plain for my tastes, but appreciate that is variable between examples. Here the mahogany is a darker and, to my eye, more attractive set of woods which I much prefer. I also prefer the extra decoration here, but I will come on to that below. 

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele body

The bridge is made from ebony and is in the now increasingly popular 'through body' style with Taylor-esque shaping. I must say - I do wonder who else the Snail production line makes ukes for as I see this shaping rather a lot now. Anyway, it's extremely well finished, smooth and tidy. Sitting in that is a compensated top bone nut and string spacing here comes in at 41mm.

As I say, there is more decor here compared to the SUC-M3 which had nothing more than a sound hole rosette. Around the top and back edges (and tail joint) are wooden binding strips and around the top that is edged in purfling strips in red and yellow.  They are not huge so don't dominate, but I, personally think it's nice to see a change from the more usual 'black and white' purfling here. Around the sound hole is are a set of broad wooden chevron inlays bordered by red, yellow and black purfling which again I rather like. I think the colours are subtle but work well with the wood colour. Somebody saw a sneak peek picture and pointed out that we have the colours of the German flag here! Covering all of that is a gloss finish which I can't find any flaws with anywhere. It's a deep mirror shine which is rather lovely.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele decor

Inside is very tidy with notched linings, thin braces, vertical top braces and no mess anywhere.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele inside

The neck wood is not specified, but fits in the same category as the SUC-M3 in being 'far eastern' in profile and a nut width of 36mm, 28 from G to A. I'd like that wider and flatter. It's also glossed and i'd prefer satin here. It's topped with more ebony which is deep black yet with a pale streak at the bottom end. These days, with ebony becoming scarce there is a movement towards accepting wood like this (rather than it being rejected) so I am letting it go. That said if it's going to have pale streaks, I'd like more of them to make it more uniform! It's fitted with 18 frets, joined at the 14th and the sides are edge bound with wooden strips. No sharp edges here. Pearl dots face out at the 5th, 7th, 10th, double 12th and 15th and thankfully we get repeated dots down the side.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele neck

Beyond the well cut bone nut is the other big difference to the SUC-M3 in that we have a slot head. It's well done, faced in ebony holding the inlaid Snail logo and is all very tidy. But.. I am not a fan of slot heads on concerts or smaller. I think they look too big on the more diminutive body.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele headstock

Tuners are typical side mounts you will see on a slot head. They are black and gold and the gearing looks decent.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele tuners

Finishing it off are a set of un-named fluorocarbon strings and you will be looking at between £250 - £260. I bought this from a big box store and it came with nothing else at all, but if you buy from some specialists, like SUS, you will get a branded gig bag for the extra money. I'd say that's a good deal as you will also get their personal service. In fact the pricing is a good deal all round as it's really in the same ball park as the much plainer SUC-M3.

So it's all very good here so far. It's well made with no flaws that I can see and well finished too. It's balanced and not heavy at 580g either. Setup is also good, perhaps surprisingly as I bought it blind from a big box store. That suggests Snail QC ex factory is decent.

Snail S10C Concert Ukulele back

Volume is very good with no complaints from me on that score. Sustain is in the 'okay-ish' category, but do remember that this is a concert with less body to vibrate and create that resonance. It's acceptable though. 

Tone wise it is very much the same as the SUC-M3 and very much a trademark concert sound. It's not overly bright but not overly dark in tone which is the mahogany doing its thing. Strummed it's a very pretty, peppy jangly tone that is just what I would want from a concert. Clear notes and never muddy it's a hoot to play this way and is all very rounded in tone.

Fingerpicking fits the bill too like a concert should giving bell like chimes and good volume right up the neck. Not much wrong here either to be honest - a really pretty sound.

All in all, I think this is a cracker of an instrument. I felt like giving it a slightly higher score than the SUC-M3 because I think the body decor really does give it a boost without being ostentatious. The slot head on a concert though drags it back for me, but of course that's a totally subjective point. It does what a concert should though and for not a lot of money all things considered. Putting it another way, this was bought with blog funds and I'll be sad to sell it on.. but that's the way the funds work - needs to go into another instrument rather than building a personal collection! I think it's a cracker myself. Highly recommended.


Model: Snail S10
Scale: Concert
Body: Solid Mahogany
Bridge: Ebony through body
Saddle: Compensated bone
Saddle spacing: 41mm
Finish: Gloss
Neck: Unspecified
Fingerboard: Ebony
Frets: 18, 14 to body
Nut: Bone
Nut width: 36mm, 28mm G to A
Tuners: Unbranded open gears
Strings: Flourocarbon
Extras: Bag with certain shops
Country of origin: China
Weight: 580g
Price: Circa £260


Great build and finish
Nice understated decoration
Good volume
Clear jangly strummed tone
Bell like picked tone


Nut width not for me
Don't like slot heads on concerts


Looks - 9 out of 10
Fit and finish - 9 out of 10
Sound - 9 out of 10 
Value for money - 9 out of 10









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