8 string question

Discussion in 'Extended Range Guitars' started by ThePIGI King, Jun 20, 2015.

  1. ThePIGI King

    ThePIGI King Ibanez Enthusiast

    Messages:
    1,121
    Likes Received:
    802
    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2014
    Location:
    Ohio
    So, I've been thinking about diving into the world of 8's for a bit now, and I've read tons of threads where people ask if they should buy an 8 or a 7 string. Lots of people tend to reply with "7's are just guitars with an extra string, but 8's are entirely different". I've seen that on multiple boards now, and was wondering if anyone could explain what people mean by that. Surly 8 strings is just one more than 7...right?

    tl;dr: Why do some think 8's are a totally different instrument?
     
  2. Zeno

    Zeno SZ Hunter

    Messages:
    1,638
    Likes Received:
    136
    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2011
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    the extra scale length and massive neck width difference between a 6 and an 8, is my guess.

    Which in my opinion is bull..... If you're good at guitar, you'll be fine on a guitar with any number of strings after a short adjustment period
     
  3. NorCal_Val

    NorCal_Val SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    365
    Likes Received:
    165
    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    Location:
    NorCal Central Valley
    I've been playing 7s since '97; jumping to the 8-string required an
    adjustment period, but now it just feels like another piece of
    the toolbox.
    :shred:
     
  4. ck3

    ck3 6 is not enough

    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Gorham, ME, USA
    I currently have a small arsenal of 6, 7, and 8 string guitars of various scale lengths at my disposal and find that each has a distinct feel and can inspire in different ways. That being said, I've been gravitating more toward 7-8 string axes as of late, most likely because voicings on the alteratively-tuned 6 strings can be comped on the ERGs. It may be time to thin the herd soon.
     
  5. bzhan1

    bzhan1 Banned

    Messages:
    428
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    May 15, 2015
    Location:
    USA
    I'm pretty sure it's the scale and increased tension, my ibby 7 feels exactly like my ibby 6, my 2228 as good as it plays feels a lot harder in the higher strings especially
     
  6. MaxOfMetal

    MaxOfMetal Likes trem wankery. Super Moderator

    Messages:
    37,762
    Likes Received:
    28,584
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    Location:
    Racine, WI
    If it's setup right, there's next to no significant adjustment time, especially if you've played guitars with lower tunings.

    That's the thing though, most guitarists can't setup their guitars to save their lives. :lol:
     
  7. Daunicornslayer

    Daunicornslayer SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    128
    Likes Received:
    8
    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2014
    Location:
    Portland Oregon
    The hardest part is adjusting to the size of an 8. Most people tune to standard intervals so there's no extra theory to learn. I went straight from a 6 to an 8 with about a weeks worth of fumbling around getting used to the extra two inches of scale length and the width of the fretboard. I feel like 8's open up a lot of possibilities that 6's and 7's dont touch.
     
  8. A-Branger

    A-Branger SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    3,924
    Likes Received:
    1,585
    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2015
    Location:
    QLD, Australia
    8 string like people say here you can take them as a 6 string with 2 extra strings. Either to play ina more comfortable way (up and down on the neck vs across ) ... same theory I use for my 5 string bass)... and also for the added bonus of 5 extra lower notes (standard tuning) than a 7 string...

    when I say "it is a different animal"... IMO... Im referring not so much to the "extra strings", it wont take you long to learn, but if you still play a lot of 6 string songs, it may have to work more on your technique to mute the lower strings..... But for me the different animal refers to the low register. You know would be playing into the register of a almost standard tuning 4 string bass (if you tune the guitar in standard at F#....just couple of notes away from the E of a bass)

    so in a way you have both bass and guitar in the same instrument. It opens the possibility to much more, like a piano approach, you can have both high and low.

    And that IMO is the best use for them. Having one for the sake of "low", it gets too muddy, you clash too much with the bass (ruling him out, or pushing him to the sub-sonic freq...hehe). And lacking high freq range on your music can be pretty tired to listening to....plus it doesnt necessary means that it would be "heavier".


    some people do it for the sake to be "one man band" too. Im more traditional and still like the bass+guitar approach better, so for me to de-tune a 7 string a whole setp would be pushing boundaries for metal....but thats just me

    If you want it, I would say go for it. Just remember to post photos. We all love photos here :D
     
  9. jeremyb

    jeremyb SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    571
    Likes Received:
    78
    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2010
    Location:
    Chch, NZ
    I had one for a while, tended to just play it like a 6, ignoring the highest strings, I should really just get a Bass VI...
     
  10. domsch1988

    domsch1988 SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    536
    Likes Received:
    9
    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2014
    Location:
    Cologne
    I made the switch quite recently. From 6 to 8. My experience so far: I skipped standard tuning completely. For the first weeks i went with E-A-D-A-D-G-B-E (mostly to be able to use it in my Band, which plays Dropped D). Playing my 6 String Songs was no Problem instantly. I tend to adjust my Left Hand position a bit. With sixes i tend to grab around the neck (thumb over the top, a bit Hendrix stylish). On the 8 my thumb rests on the Back of the neck, which improved my soloing quite a bit.
    Apart from that, and even though i really, really like Djenty music i could find any use for the low E. Maybe it's the rest of my equipment, or my playing, but i really can't get strings for the tension i'd like.

    Last week my love for the 8 went up exponentially. Why? I changed tuning. I just cranked the 8th String to A (.082 gauge on 27 inch scale). Comes in at around 25 lbs. Now i freakin love it. i added a high string (.009 gauge tuned to F#). So i end up with A-D-A-D-G-B-E-F#. To get this Tension on a standard 8 string tuning (low E in my case) i'd have to put a .110 gauge string on there, which none of our music stores sell. For my Band (Folk Metal) this opens up possibilities. I can use the high string to play melodys in E Minor and compliment the pipes we have.The 2nd to 4th string played open in this case. And the low A is plenty low for my djenty days.

    So to answer your question, i'd go with those who say the 8 is a completely different beast. But really, this comes into play when you start to see the use for you. If you like to use it as a 6 with two added strings i'd say it's as good as a 7 (or better). For me, adding two strings gives me a plethora of options with tunings. I have to say though, that switching to one high one low makes playing our 6 string material a bit more complex and sometimes screws my orientation up.
     
  11. facepalm66

    facepalm66 The Master of Joints

    Messages:
    825
    Likes Received:
    57
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2012
    Location:
    Vilnius, Lithuania
    No for me string spacing changed, which needed some time adjust.
    Everything else was pretty smooth. I'd rather say you need some time to get how many stuff can actually do with an 8 if using it smart
     
  12. Action

    Action SS.org Regular

    Messages:
    252
    Likes Received:
    8
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2015
    Location:
    USA
    hahaha, this. I can't thank sso enough. Got a good deal on a 8 from someone just like that. I took plenty of time to read these forums and set it up right and now in some ways it plays better than some of my sixes.

    Not sounding the (now more numerous) strings that shouldn't be ringing was the hard part for me.
     

Share This Page