I wonder if zenne oud (a smaller version of the regular instrument) is better for the starters in terms of ease of learning.
How many strings do various types of ouds (Arab, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Greek, Persia, etc.) have and how are they usually tuned (with pitch reference or not) to what absolute or relative pitches?
How does one learn to play various non-Western scales on the oud? Are there instructions with diagrams showing notes as positions on the neck of the instrument? Book, videos, etc.?