View Full Version : 8 Eight String Ukulele Tunings and Strings

02-17-2016, 08:36 PM
Hi All, I am looking at purchasing an 8 string tenor ukulele and I am interested in the different tunings possible.

Question 1: I know the GgCcEEAA is the standard tuning, and there are a number of other possible variants, but I've never heard them before. Could anyone direct me to some sound clips or videos with alternate eight string Ukulele tunings? Such as GGCCEEAA, ggCcEEAA, etc.

Question 2: Also, I know low G and Low C strings exist as 8 string ukes comes equipped with them, but what if I wanted a low E and A for GgCcEeAa? What kind of strings would I use to get this sound? Are there uke strings out there already that are low E and Low A or would I have to use strings from a classical guitar?

Thanks for all the help!

02-17-2016, 10:48 PM
Low A strings come in most string sets for six-string ukes, which are frequently tuned with the double C and A strings in octaves. You may be able to buy a low A string separately.

02-18-2016, 01:13 AM
I get 8 string sets from Southcoast for my 6 strings for more flexible tuning and when I get an 8 string, will still get from them as you are more likely to get the proper tension on all of the strings in a set.

02-18-2016, 02:30 AM
Have tried a few different tunings on my 8-string. This sample uses C3-C4-G3-G4-D4-D4-A4-A4 which I tried as a variant to the fifths tuning on my tenor guitar, yet follow the 8-string uke model string pattern.

Have since gone to C3-C3-G3-G3- D4-D4-A4-A4. This is mandola tuning. One luthier is building a mandola-style tenor uke and uses this tuning on it. I like it a lot.

Regarding the OP's second question, the low C string may take uptuning to a low E (string life would be shortened), but am not sure if the instrument will take the extra tension. Same goes for the low G being upped to low A. Other than that, a simple process would be checking the string diameters for low C and low G, split the difference for low E and find a string in some pack (or as a single) that matched. After that, it's a sound test on the instrument to see if it's satisfactory. I use JustStrings.com for most of my string purchases, as their website usually has the string diameters and tensions within the string descriptions.

02-18-2016, 02:56 AM
If you want to go the other way with the E string, you could always get a super-high E from a charango set.

Keep in mind that if you change the octave of a string, you might have to do some work on the nut and saddle to get the new string to fit and/or to adjust intonation.

- FiL

Down Up Dick
02-18-2016, 03:25 AM
I use Gg Cc EE GG, which is "open" tuning. I intend to use it with a slide, but I haven't gotten around to it much yet.

Too much other stuff goin' on . . . :old:

02-18-2016, 03:37 AM
I think it you order from Living Waters, you can get whatever combination you want...I'm looking forward to release of the new Ohana concert 8-string and would like to try ggCcEeAA.

02-18-2016, 08:23 AM
Have tried a few different tunings on my 8-string....

... This is mandola tuning. One luthier is building a mandola-style tenor uke and uses this tuning on it. I like it a lot.



Could you say the name of the luthier or PM it to me? I'm doing Ukes right now as a surrogate mandolin while I deal with some arthritis. Thanks.