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avetik
09-07-2014, 02:44 PM
Hi All,

I got an 8-String Luna ukulele, which came with D'Addario set of strings. I know that I can find other string sets (Aquila and such) for an 8 string ukulele primarily online. But I wanted to take a step back and ask a newbee's silly "why?" question here: Why is an 8-string instrument being strung in this unusual way (octave-ocatave-unison-unison), and I read somewhere that there's even a proper way of tuning the octave pairs (lower strings apart from each other?), while keeping other strings unison? Is there a history / reason / best practice behind this way of tuning?.. Was there ever an attempt to tune all strings as octaves? (I suppose if all strings are tuned unison we would get a mandoline-like sound)?

Not sure how thin could nylon strings get before sacrificing playability... I wonder if it's possible to find a set of all octave strings online (I searched, but no success). Or is there a way to mix and match?..

Thanks in advance for any feedback!

PhilUSAFRet
09-07-2014, 03:01 PM
An Issue to discuss with Dirk at Southcoast Strings

FiL
09-08-2014, 03:09 AM
12-string guitars work the same way. The lower pairs are octaves and the higher pairs are unison. If they were all octaves, you would certainly get a very full sound, but my guess is that it would be *too* full. (I think that's one of the many reasons the tiple never really caught on.)

Having said that, if you're willing to buy lots of strings you don't need you could cobble together an odd all-octave set of Aquila's by getting a high E (octave above standard uke E) from a charango set, and a low A (octave below standard uke A) from a 6-string uke set.

- FiL

Jon Moody
09-08-2014, 03:17 AM
If you wanted to try something different, you could make an 8-string set that was all unison (basically just buy two identical sets). What you'll get is a chorus type effect, which may work for you. I've done this a couple times on my Boat Paddle 5 string (tuned the G in unison) and it gives it a neat tonality that isn't as full as it is with octaves, but still cuts through a mix well.

mds725
09-08-2014, 08:50 AM
If you wanted to try something different, you could make an 8-string set that was all unison (basically just buy two identical sets). What you'll get is a chorus type effect, which may work for you. I've done this a couple times on my Boat Paddle 5 string (tuned the G in unison) and it gives it a neat tonality that isn't as full as it is with octaves, but still cuts through a mix well.

I believe mandolin strings are paired and not octaved.

Jon Moody
09-08-2014, 08:54 AM
I believe mandolin strings are paired and not octaved.

They are, and they have a chorused effect; how intense depends on how closely you intonate the pairs.

mm stan
09-08-2014, 09:38 AM
thinner strings improve playability while giving a less warmer thinner tone...