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8 string basses

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by relman, Jul 19, 2001.

  1. anyone got experience any of with these basses?
  2. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    what kind? doubled-string or 8 seperate strings?
  3. doubled ones, not your beast JT.
  4. Traveler


    Jun 26, 2001
    Greenwood, AR.
    Never had a lick of playing on em. Never even seen one in person, to tell you the truth. Just on the net and in magazines. I know what the string order on a seperated 8-string is, but what exactly is the string order for the doubled?
  5. nanook


    Feb 9, 2000
    I've heard them called octave basses. I think the tuning is the same as a regular 4 string on the 4 heavy gauge strings and an active higher on the light gauge. Most are tuned EADG.

    Finger players like the light strings underneath the heavy ones, which is the way they come. Some pick users switch them out so the light strings are on top.

    Hendrix played a Hagstrom. Rickenbacker still makes an one.

    That's all I know about them. I've never played one but hope to some day.
  6. I still cant see how you can play those beasts. Anythings more than 5 confuses the heck out of me.
  7. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    I tried a top-of-the-line Washburn XB928 in a store a while ago. More fun than a barrel full of monkeys, and what a sound! Played like butter and even slapped well. 8-strings aren't that confusing to play if you just ignore the little strings.
  8. Rockinjc


    Dec 17, 1999
    Unless I found a super deal, a doubled 8 string would be one bass I could live without. Still it would be nice to be able to borrow one to record on a tune or two.

    I was at Elderly Instruments at lunch and saw a 12 string Hammer that looked pretty cool. If I had more free time it would be fun to plug in for a wile.

    A lot of the time when I'm playing, there is not enough sonic room for even 4 strings, but in a trio, and 8 or twelve could be a lot of fun.

  9. ThunderStik

    ThunderStik Guest

    Jun 25, 2001
    Claremore OK.
    I have played quite a few and love them its just real different sound and you play them just like a 4 string. They are not hard to play but I did play a hamer 12 that was a damn handfull. A frettless 8 sound astounding with some chorus. About 10 years ago I saw Bill E Garr from L.S.D. playing a few and asked him after the show to check them out and It was way Kool, If I remember correctly he had dual outs on the basses and ran one signal to an svt 8x10 and the other through a marshall guitar halfstack, just a brutal rock bass sound.
  10. Thornton Davis

    Thornton Davis

    Dec 11, 1999
    Interesting timing on this thread, as i'm sitting here at my computer with my 1968 Hagstrom-8 string bass that I just bought today. This particular bass is next to mint. It's hard to believe that a bass of this kind and vintage could be in such incredible condition (but it is).
    As far as stringing goes, it uses a octive string in front of each standard bass string. Just like a 12 string guitar does. Unfortunately the bass strings on this particular bass are flatwound where the octive strings are roundwound, so the sound is a mix of flat and round wound strings together. I will put a new set of roundwound strings on it next week.
    If you play with a pick, these basses can really ring out for you, to play with your fingers is not a problem and the string spacing between each string set is very good. But the bass really doesn't ring as much. I'm sure that once I change the bass strings to roundwounds, the bass will ring out nicely using my fingers.
    These are definately specialty basses and you won't want to use them on every tune. But when you use them on a tune that works, they sound great.
    PS - Here's a pic of my bass. This is from the store where I bought it's website. I hope it fits
  11. Traveler


    Jun 26, 2001
    Greenwood, AR.
    Wow, thats a purty bass!!!!!!!!!!!

    The only other double stringed 8 Ive seen was in a recent issue of Bass Player Magazine. The bass player for Kid Rock was promoting Washburns, and it had a picture of him with a doubled 8. It was a purty bass, too.

    Dont remember the issue, it had Stefan Lessard on the cover though.
  12. Correct me if I'm wrong but I think that on the Ric site they said that there are four bass strings tuned to EADG and four guitar strings which I assume are tuned EADG but in a higher octave. Thatw as my understanding of it, anyway.
  13. AlexK


    Apr 10, 2001
    I just played a Dean Rhapsody 8-string earlier today. It was pretty cool, I always wanted to try one. I was wondering, though, are there any 10-string basses out there?
  14. yes, 10 strings exist. Modulus and Zon make them. Go to guitar.com, there's a dude called "modulus10" who owns one. Michael Manring has a zon.
  15. Thornton Davis

    Thornton Davis

    Dec 11, 1999
    Yes Chris J, standard string EADG 440 tuning applies to the four standard bass strings. The other four strings are octive strings. I'm not sure of the exact gauge of each octive string is, but it is different for each string. I'm sure they are standard guitar strings. I'll be changing the strings next week and report what the octive string gauges are.
    You can purchase a 12 string bass. Charvel make one if memory serves me correct so do Space Cadet Guitars. The string spacing on a 12 string bass is very tight. Tom Petersson of Cheap Trick uses a 12 string bass all the time.
  16. coyoteboy

    coyoteboy easy there, Ned Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2000
    Sactomato, CA
    I played a Zon 8-string once in a G*****-Center. Too bad the strings were dead. I have a couple of Zons already, so an 8 would be neat. Aside from the dead strings, it was pretty cool, and felt like a Zon, not a baseball bat.
  17. melvin


    Apr 28, 2001
    i played a 12 string a few weeks ago, too many strings to pluck at the same time. the neck didnt seem to big (or it might be an illusion since i have huge hands) but something i noticed was the neck got bigger as it got closer to the headstock.
  18. Gabu


    Jan 2, 2001
    Lake Elsinore, CA
    I went to the Stryper Expo a bit back and there was a custom guitar shop's booth there. They had a 12 string bass... it was tuned EADG... with the top string low and the other two octives on the first string. (not two octive ranges... the two highs were in the same octive). This bass sounded HUGE. It was a bit tough to get used to... but a BIG FAT sound.
  19. I like the way the 8 strings sound. I would like to have one, I bet a lot of interesting things could be done with it. I've only played a few though. I've played 12 stringers, but never amplified. The batteries are dead every time I go into guitar center.
  20. KB

    KB Supporting Member

    Jan 13, 2000
    Chapel Hill, NC
    I have a Dean Rhapsody 8 and I love it. It is very easy to play and the sound is monsterous (even with the EMG-HZ pups on it). You can typically get one for around $475 to $500 if you look. It is a very pretty bass (I have the trans black finish over the Bubinga top and it looks deep and rich and shiney). I am typically a 4 string player, but the 8 was no problem to adapt to. I mostly play it finger style and I have no problems working the strings (there is plenty of room between them). The sound is very different from a 4 string. It is a very full sound (basically a guitar and a bass mimicing each other). It probbaly wouldn't work for every song, but I use it in about 4 to 5 songs with my band and it sounds great (especially since we are a 3 piece right now...it helps fill in where our other guitarist, who just left, was playing). The construction is about a 7 on a 10 scale (typical of a cheaper bass made in Korea). The neck is a little large and takes a little while to get used to, but it is not that big of deal. I definately can't play as fast on the 8 string as I can on my 4 strings, but I don't really need to.


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