Ok, that helps a lot.
What about DAEADGBE? Standard 6 string tuning and then two dropped fifths. I know you tried it, but I bet it'd be a week or two and you'd be used to it.
Power chords with a low A are much easier than a low E, as well. I rarely play power chords on my low E unless it's on the fifth fret or above anyway... so if you want that, A and D would be good fun.
But I still think drop E is as close to being the most brain-dead (in a good way) tuning you could use for an 8-string. That's why I haven't changed it in a decade...
Just a thought, can you rent an 8 string for a weekend to really dig into tuning?I guess you have a point there.
If I have to break it down in detail, I guess what's important to me are:
1) Ability to voice chords (especially jazz) without more difficulty than a standard 6 string (which means I might need to keep standard tuning on the higher 6 strings).
2) Easy power chords, which probably means the lowest 2 strings will be tuned to fifths, so I can have two sets of fifths when writing/playing riffs and power chords.
3) Playing scales wouldn't require big shifts.
But after my experimentation yesterday, I realized this is one of those situations where you can't have your cake and eat it--there has to be a compromise somewhere. And that's what I'm trying to decide on--exactly where to compromise. But I'm only simulating what it might be like on an 8-string with my 6-strings and a pitch shifter, so when I actually do get the H/08 in my hands, it might be different. Perhaps no matter what I tell Aristides to set it up as at the factory, I'll end up having to change it later anyway, so it's just something I'll deal with as it comes.
I bought an Ibanez RG8 shortly after this post, which I've been experimenting with different tunings on to figure out how I want to set up my Aristides H/08 when it's finished (it'll probably be done around May).Just a thought, can you rent an 8 string for a weekend to really dig into tuning?
May be worth the couple of bucks…
Glad you've found your tuning. I used to have my 2nd 8-string tuned with the lowest two strings in fifths, but since then I gave it up and just tuned it to drop D, to complement my other 8-string in drop E. It just feels so right. Sometimes it's best to stick with what you're most familiar with.I bought an Ibanez RG8 shortly after this post, which I've been experimenting with different tunings on to figure out how I want to set up my Aristides H/08 when it's finished (it'll probably be done around May).
Currently, I've pretty much settled on EAEADGBE. I feel like I don't need the thickest strings to be in fifths because I'm not going to be using them to play power chords (too muddy), and on my 7-string, I use drop A, which I do use to play power chords. So the drop E on the 8-string is really my chug string--at least until I learn how to incorporate it more into overall playing.