lGhostl
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Join date: May 2012
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#1
So most of the bands I listen to use 7 strings. However, many of them use 8 strings as well. Most of the songs I want to learn are on 7 strings though, though it would be nice to have the 8 for when I want it... So my question would be, to those of you who have 7's and 8's, is does the 8th string get in the way playing 7 string songs? Is it worth the extra string? Or should I just go for a 7?
jeleopard
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#2
Do what you want to do.

Really, it comes down what you want. If you need all 8 strings, get an 8. If you don't, you could also, if you wish, down tune a 7. It's really down to what you need and what you want.
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#4
I vote for 7. I'm biased though, I can't stand 8s.
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lemurflames
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#5
I vote for 7 simply because you aren't really sure what you want.

8 string guitars are a different beast. Save it for when you know you want it and can really get some great riffs out of it.

But really, you can get what you want.
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shredder3386
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#6
I have both a 7 and an 8 and I vote 8. I find myself reaching for my 8 more just because its more fun to play. Playing 7 string songs on an 8 isn't bad, you just gotta get used to reading 7 string tabs while omitting the top string. To be fair though most guitar tab software doesn't even have an 8 string option yet so you'll have to get used to that anyway,
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#7
I'd say start on a seven, and if you want to afterwards, progress to an eight. As Mr. lemur said, eights are a completely different beast in the wonderful world of guitars.
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Zan595
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#8
I prefer 7's personally, 8 string guitars are just way too bulky for my taste. I can get enough range with my 7's to play 8 string songs by down tuning, so I've never felt the need to get an 8 string. It's all taste, though- if you happen to like enormous guitars, the 8 string would definitely be handier to have than down tuning your 7 string all the time.
Mind_Reader7
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#9
7 string with thicker strings, so you can downtune to an 8 string tuning.
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k3v1n shr3dz
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#10
Well, an 8 contains a built-in 7....

It mostly depends on intended tuning, whether or not you like the 27" (or more) scale inherent in almost all 8s, and if you need a tremolo.

IF you don't want to go down to F# (let's say you want to tune up), there s a HARD LIMIT on the high E string at 27". You won't be able to go above high G due to string breakage, and even then bending can be problematic. However, if you want to tune a 7 string down below G, you'll run into tuning problems on shorter than 27" if you're a hard picker, to say nothing of the negative affects on tone wrought by huge strings on a shorter scale (inharmonicity). Factor in Drop Tunings, and things can get wierd...

If you have small hands, 27" can be a beast. There are a few 26.5" 8s from Schecter, and a few 25.5" 8s from ESP/LTD, which makes no sense at all.


If you need a trem, your options are limited to Schecter for the time being unless you're willing to have the guitar modded heavily to add an aftermarket Floyd 8-string OFR.
[EDIT] forgot about Kahler's 8-string trem included on several Agiles (but who wants to play something with a neck that bad?) They also come on Ran guitars, which are pretty boss...[EDIT]


I'd say drop $400 on an Ibanez RG8 just to see if you like 8s. Yes, it's made in Indonesia (MII), and Ibanez pickups are almost always abysmal, but I've heard good things on Sevenstring.org

G# is low enough for me, so an 8 tuned up is doable, as is a 7 tuned down. I'd rather have the 8 for added range, but the comfort of a normal 25.5" scale and a TREM are more important IMHO.
Last edited by k3v1n shr3dz at Jan 21, 2013,
Kylej12
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#11
Have a look at the schecter omen 8, or the website Thomann do this 8 string for under 200 euro, could b a good way to see if u like 8 strings without spending a fortune
rockstar256
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#12
I would suggest 7 string since downtuning 8 string is just a NOPE. Why tune whole octave E , d or C...? & string can do all the crap, got mine 25,5 downtuned two steps or one down and its totally fine.

Or accordion?
Last edited by rockstar256 at Jan 21, 2013,
Anon17
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#13
Quote by k3v1n shr3dz
If you have small hands, 27" can be a beast. There are a few 26.5" 8s from Schecter, and a few 25.5" 8s from ESP/LTD, which makes no sense at all.


25.5" scale allows an additional high and low string, instead of two lower strings.
k3v1n shr3dz
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#14
Quote by Anon17
25.5" scale allows an additional high and low string, instead of two lower strings.


Tru dat, and I should have included that in my post.
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#15
I find a low 8th string to be largely useless. I am, however, very intrigued by the idea of an 8 string with a high A instead of a low F#.
k3v1n shr3dz
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#16
Quote by W4RP1G
I find a low 8th string to be largely useless. I am, however, very intrigued by the idea of an 8 string with a high A instead of a low F#.


You may find this thread interesting

From what I've HEARD, no one has properly done A4 on a 27" scale yet. The Octave4Plus strings can do it, but you can't bend more than 1/2 step, and it takes quite some time for the string to stretch enough to attain the high A without breaking outright. Locking bridges/nuts, and long headstocks and string-thru bridges can exacerbate string breakage.... not what I'd call "proper".

If you're willing to tune it down a whole step (A, D, G, C, F, A, D, high G) you can do it on a 27", but many of the problems still persist albeit to a lesser degree.
Stealthtastic
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#17
I have owned both high end 7's and 8's...personally I find 8's and their excessive low end a little useless. I like what others do with them though, but for the love of god, if you plan on playing nothing but breakdowns on an 8...buy a baritone 6 and tune it down lol
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Anon17
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#18
If you're having a high A/Ab/G string then a 25.5" scale is probably the better idea. At some point I want to get a 25.5" 8 string to tune to drop G (with a high G), although with O4P strings a 25.5" can handle drop A/B standard with a high A string.
Krauser
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#19
I'd just pick up a 7 string and down tune it for the occasional times when you would want to play an 8 string song. It's not that I have anything against 8 strings, it's just that, like others have said, an 8 string is a totally different beast and, to me at least, feels like a much further jump from a 7 string than a 7 string does from a 6. It's almost an entirely new way to approach playing whereas a 7 string feels, to me at least, like a regular 6 string with an added low B. I know that sounds ridiculous, as an 8 string is just a 7 with an added low F#, but it comes off feeling as if it is a whole new experience. Perhaps it's just that the lowest 8th string is so low, it's hard for me to utilize it traditionally for metal and such, but I end up rethinking how to go about writing songs (not focusing on utilizing the lowest string's tuning as the root, for example, or re-learning not to chug on the lowest string for rhythmic affect, which is quite disappointing on the lowest F# without proper amp setup in my opinion).

That may be a good thing though. It helps spurn new writing ideas and originality. That said, if you're just trying to play songs and enjoy a traditional experience, go for a 7.
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thebestjoe
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#20
I'd go 7 first. It took a couple of months to get the transition down with a 6 to 7, skipping right to 8 doesn't seem like a good idea, and like you said, you don't even want the 8th string right now. I've had my 8 string about 7 months now with the idea that it'd be great for experimenting things, but I never even touch the 8th string when I play it.
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triface
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#21
Sorry for the bump, but I was wondering if I could obtain input for this as well, since I'm making the same decision at the moment and since there's already a thread for this.

Does the extra width of the neck on an 8 make the transition from a 6 to an 8 that much harder? Does over-the-neck vibrato become impossible with an 8, or hell, a 7? Or does it all depend on whose guitars we are talking about? I've read things about Schecter having thick necks with a somewhat sticky finish.

Are there any brands that are decent for an entry-mid level 7 or 8? There are a bunch of shops at my place that stock Ibanez, Schecter and LTD (ESP, apparently) guitars.
Last edited by triface at Feb 23, 2013,
Dayn
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#22
Quote by triface
Does the extra width of the neck on an 8 make the transition from a 6 to an 8 that much harder? Does over-the-neck vibrato become impossible with an 8, or hell, a 7? Or does it all depend on whose guitars we are talking about? I've read things about Schecter having thick necks with a somewhat sticky finish.

Are there any brands that are decent for an entry-mid level 7 or 8? There are a bunch of shops at my place that stock Ibanez, Schecter and LTD (ESP, apparently) guitars.
First thing's first, I would probably suggest Ibanez. They introduced the first production 8-string, then in NAMM 2013 thought "What's this bullshit from everyone else?" and they dropped the bomb and released a hell of a lot of new extended-range instruments, including a lot of eights. I can only vouch for the RG2228, however.

There's... well, there's no transition, I found. The only thing was having my picking hand remember there's two extra strings. But I got used to it after a week. The width means nothing; depends on the guitar of course, but string spacing is fine. There's... just... two extra strings. That's all there is to it.

But I suppose it depends on your technique and whatever you find comfortable. I keep my thumb either placed lightly on the back of the neck, or just hovering. Now and again when I'm lazy my thumb creeps over, so I suppose that depends on your technique and how big your hands are, honestly. But personally, I think there's something wrong if you have to choke the neck.

The RG2228's neck is very thin, has little shoulders, and the string spacing is just like any six-string Ibanez. Unless you like thick necks, it's really one of the most comfortable necks on a production 8-string ever.

That's about all I can offer in that regard. I went from six to eight very easily on my RG2228. I chose it because some of the music I wanted to play was on an eight-string. Then I started unlocking what it could do. I can't play six-strings anymore... I keep reaching for non-existent strings and notes.
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triface
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#23
Hey. Thanks for the advice man! I usually keep my thumb at the back of the neck, except for when I need to do a vibrato, especially vibratos at the end of bends. Feels like I have a lot more control over what semitone I'm hitting.

I've just checked out the R2228 and it seems to be very out of my budget.
Last edited by triface at Feb 23, 2013,
Grunt344
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#24
Get the eight string. What ever you can play on a 6 or a 7 you can play with an eight. I've played both. The eight just has that, feel to it. It just feels awesome. Granted my hands are huge, but never the less eight strings are amazing.
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#25
I'm really glad I don't play much metal anymore. I have normal size palms but really stumpy fingers, I manage to work around physical limitations on a 6, but an 8 would be near impossible for me.
triface
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#26
Quote by Battery Chicken
I'm really glad I don't play much metal anymore. I have normal size palms but really stumpy fingers, I manage to work around physical limitations on a 6, but an 8 would be near impossible for me.

Well, it's just those few sub-genres of metal that use 8-strings.