Multiscale 8 string electric recommendations, please

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by GibsonLives, May 31, 2019.

  1. GibsonLives

    GibsonLives Member

    Messages:
    2,741
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    Location:
    Syracuse, New York
    Hey, all.

    Okay, like many here, I've played "traditional" 6-string guitars for decades, but have zero experience with 8s/multis. I understand a lot of the whys and hows in a theoretical sense, but I see a ton of options out there, and I don't know what's good. Here's what I (think I) want:

    1. No more than a 1.5-inch difference in scale from high-E to low-F#.

    2. Locking tuners preferred (though i could possibly install some later).

    3. The ability at any rate for the factory tuners to accommodate an .080" low-F# (especially since I'll probably at least start by tuning that string down a full step).

    4. A "neutral fret" preferably closer to the nut (some brands apparently put it at the 12th., which can make playing chords a bit trickier).

    5. Finally, i dig high-end guitars in general, but since this will be such a radical departure for me, I'm going to have to set a limit of $1000 usd. Of course, less wouldn't hurt either :).

    Aside from the numbered wish list above, quality is of the utmost importance to me. So, any suggestions? Thanks.

    Steve
     
  2. Bolt VanderHuge

    Bolt VanderHuge Member

    Messages:
    2,586
    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2017
    Tricky in that price range. I'd say used Ibanez, but their multi-scales tend to put the neutral fret at the 12th.

    Agile uses the 9th, and would probably be your least expensive option new. No locking tuners though. Something like this, maybe?
    https://www.rondomusic.com/pendpro82527ebcpwhite.html

    Or this Jackson?
    https://reverb.com/item/11439262-ja...rosewood-fingerboard-gloss-black-885978727445

    You could also check out Legator, but I think their quality gets mixed reviews.
    https://reverb.com/item/15641750-le...ltiscale-8-string-electric-guitar-orange-burl

    This new Cort looks promising with the Fishmans, and only a bit above your price range.
    https://www.guitarplayer.com/gear/cort-announces-new-kx508ms-eight-string-guitar
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  3. J Factor

    J Factor Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    383
    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2018
    Location:
    Aurora IL
    I had a 7-string Ibanez multiscale RG for a while. I actually found the fanned frets easy to get used to, but the placement of the neutral (horizontal) fret was an issue for me. I would have preferred the neutral fret to be maybe the 5th-7th rather than 12th.

    However, moving the neutral fret towards the nut means that the bridge is at a more exaggerated stagger, which might require significant adjustment for proper palm muting. I had no trouble with palm muting with the Ibanez' bridge stagger, but I can't speak to a different layout.

    TBH I sold that one and went back to straight frets.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  4. Hugh_s

    Hugh_s Member

    Messages:
    3,529
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2013
    I've been looking at/for 7-string ones. I'm sort of eyeballing the ESP LTD M1007 or the Ibanez Axiom RG thingy.

    I don't know much about the Agiles, but they look nice too. I think I want active pickups.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  5. GibsonLives

    GibsonLives Member

    Messages:
    2,741
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    Location:
    Syracuse, New York
    OP again. Thanks, all.

    I've actually been looking at Ormsby and Kiesel (though above my price range) as well as Legator (sucks to hear their QC might do with some improvement).

    I'm really not sure where that leaves me, apart from either looking for used or upping my budget, but ain't that usually the way it goes?

    Steve
     
  6. Hugh_s

    Hugh_s Member

    Messages:
    3,529
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2013
    The Ormsby guitars look nice, but there are no retailers carrying them where I could grab one and get any sense of how the neck profile feels. Legator's reputation isn't helpful either.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  7. GibsonLives

    GibsonLives Member

    Messages:
    2,741
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    Location:
    Syracuse, New York
    Hugh, I feel your pain. I live in a small to midsized city, and as much as I despise GC, I checked into them, as they're literally the only place around that might have multis, but no such luck. Looks like I'll just have to buy to try regardless of make and model.

    Steve
     
  8. jwguitar

    jwguitar Supporting Member

    Messages:
    4,772
    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2012
    If I were you I would get a Cort 8 String multiscale. Those guitars are neckthrough have Fishman pickups and are very well made for under $1000. I know that their 7 string multiscale guitars go for 799 so I suspect these will go for just a little more which is a really good price for a guitar of that caliber. The model is called a Cort KX508 8-String and should be available towards the last quarter of the year.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  9. derekd

    derekd Member

    Messages:
    37,314
    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2007
    Location:
    In a van down by the river
    $1K?

    Used or brands that are possibly going to have issues. I'd sure want to get my hands on one before pulling the trigger since they are likely to vary greatly in QC. I'd consider waiting a few more months to save up and get something a little better made like the Keisel you mention.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  10. GibsonLives

    GibsonLives Member

    Messages:
    2,741
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    Location:
    Syracuse, New York
    OP again.

    So, I called Kiesel today. (It's obviously more than I want to spend, but I will say I absolutely love my Aries 6.) I asked a few questions about 8s, both multi and non, and he seemed to think straight frets weren't a problem for most. With a scale-length of 27" and standard gauge from the factory at 10-80, he said most customers didn't report stiff high strings or flubby low ones. Of course, he said, tastes vary, I could switch gauges, etc. This is just one man's opinion, but I wonder whether I'm too hooked on the multiscale idea?

    Steve
     
  11. panther_king

    panther_king Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,594
    Joined:
    May 4, 2008
    I think what you're faced with now are different roads to get to the same place. It might be worth thinking about what you're really angling for with the 8 string.

    From my perspective, a multi-scale really does work for an 8 string, and here's why. As Kiesel quoted you, you're going to really want that longer scale for the low strings, just to maintain tension. But problematically, 10's on a 27" scale tuned to 'standard' probably will be 'stiff', if not 'uncomfortable'. Dropping them a step or two will make up for that (essentially giving you a baritone voicing), but now what are you tuned to on the low strings now? Is that too low? That's where the multiscale at something like 27-25.5 matters - keeping your high strings normal, and the low strings where they need to be (baritone scale).

    But alternatively, if what you're looking for is just 'lower notes', 27" is already baritone scale. You could just alternatively get a baritone and downtune, and keep a normal tension and six strings, and still get to sub-A tunings. If you're looking for 8 strings because you want to use 8 strings across the scale, go for it. Tosin Abasi that **** up (yes I just verbed Tosin).
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  12. GibsonLives

    GibsonLives Member

    Messages:
    2,741
    Joined:
    May 21, 2010
    Location:
    Syracuse, New York
    Panther, thanks for the perspective. Excellent points.

    I want the 8 for an extension on top of (or rather, below?) the standard guitar, so a baritone won't cut it for me.

    In fact, I'm toying with the possibility of turning the 7th and 8th strings down a full step in order to double the E and A, thus making it possible to play not only really low power chords, but to generally be able to play cool passages in different octaves without much movement. Like, if I play a run on strings 5 and 6, I could easily do the same exact thing an octave lower on 7 and 8 without a ton of movement. Alternately, I might add a low interval to chords or the like.

    I might even tune 5-8 down a step, leave 1-4 alone, and essentially have a bass and the top two-thirds of a standard guitar at my disposal. The possibilities seem endless.

    The more I type, the more I agree with you that multi seems the better fit.

    Thanks again.

    Steve
     
    panther_king likes this.
  13. Drawde

    Drawde Member

    Messages:
    1,324
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2011
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I got a 6 string Strandberg that I love, and am currently trying to sell some stuff to get an 8 string.

    Check out the Classic or Standard 8. Wait for a 15 percent off sale at Musicians Friend, would still be a little over you 1000 budget, but might be worth it.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  14. BrokenRomeo

    BrokenRomeo Supporting Member

    Messages:
    1,920
    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2007
    Location:
    Tucson, AZ
    I've got my hands full with 6 strings and old school frets...
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  15. Hugh_s

    Hugh_s Member

    Messages:
    3,529
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2013
    Hell, I want to try a multi scale just to try one.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  16. Drew66

    Drew66 Member

    Messages:
    221
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2019
    I tried an 8 string Jackson X series Dinky multi scale that was kind of fun to mess with. Reasonably priced like $600 or so. 8 is not my thing (six is hard enough for me) but I can see the possibilities.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  17. minimal fretwear

    minimal fretwear Supporting Member

    Messages:
    167
    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2018
    Location:
    Maryland, U.S.A.
    I have heard good things on forums like sevenstring.org (ideal place to ask about this stuff) about the Agile 8s/multis, and there are some around $800 that probably meet most of your requirements. I once tried the Jackson 8 mentioned above, and it is pretty solid for the money.

    I have a Ibanez RG852MPB which is not multiscale. I am always amazed and happy when I pick that thing up, it is a great guitar. My feeling is if you shopped for good deals on a used Ibanez Prestige 8, you could always sell it for close to what you paid or break even. I had a Carvin DC800 for a short time - and it was a great guitar too, but I am not a super serious 8 string player, and it was overkill to have 2 of them around. To me 8 strings are a unique instrument, and very different from a 6 or 7 string. Going from a 6 to a 7 is easy, but for me 8 has some challenges - you can do neat stuff on it for sure though.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.
  18. sleep

    sleep Member

    Messages:
    2,567
    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Location:
    Maine
    You owe it to yourself to try it and see. Fanned-fret instruments exist and have gained traction for a reason, and the reason is theoretically sound/explainable (not 'mojo'). If I were you, I would buy a the best quality USED in your price range from a major builder (Ibanez, etc.) vs. a new instrument from a company targeting the lower end of the market (agile)... in my experience you are much more likely to get your investment back if you buy a brand with name recognition USED than a new guitar from a lesser-known builder and you'll have a much easier time selling it.
     
    GibsonLives likes this.

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice