In January, we had the official debut of two new guitars that are the first multi-scale models in the LTD lineup... the M-1007 Multi-Scale and M-1008 Multi-Scale. A ton of thought went into the design process of these guitars, and we want to let you in on some of those details as well as give you some general information about a type of guitar you might not yet have experienced for yourself.
Comfort and Speed
Almost all guitarists feel pretty trepidatious the first time they see a multi-scale guitar, with its frets angled in odd directions. "Isn't playing guitar hard enough without making it more weird?" is what comes to mind. Like many things in life, it's easy to make incorrect assumptions about a multi-scale guitar; they only way to really understand it is to get one in your hands and try for yourself. When you look down at the neck while holding the guitar, the apparent fret angles aren't nearly as foreboding as when your perspective is in front of the guitar. While playing, many musicians find that the curve of the fretting hand is actually even more comfortable than on a standard guitar, offering an ergonomic benefit for comfort and speed. And yes, most people find that it's no problem doing regular things like fretting a barre chord.
String Tension Where It Matters
The main benefit of a multi-scale guitar is that as the name implies, it offers a different scale length for each string. On the M-1007MS and M-1008MS, that means the lowest-pitched string offer a 27" scale (similar to a baritone guitar) while the highest-pitched string is a more standard 25.5" scale. What this allows for -- especially on extended range 7- and 8-string guitars like these -- is that the string tension is ideal for sharper note definition and articulation. Your tighter string gives you a tighter tone, exactly where you want it.
Custom Seymour Duncan Sentient and Nazgul Pickups
To ensure that the M-1007MS and M-1008MS were completely optimized to take advantage of their multi-scale design, we could just stick in stock pickups and hope for the best. To get perfectly even volume levels across all the strings along with the most rich harmonic overtones, we worked with our friends at Seymour Duncan to have them create customized 7- and 8-string angled versions of their Sentient (neck) and Nazgul (bridge) pickups, with the pole pieces placed precisely where they'd offer the most optimized tone response. For sonic flexibility, these models provide a push-pull control on the tone knob that allows for coil splitting.
Hipshot String-Thru-Body Hardtail Bridge, LTD Locking Tuners
Above all else, we wanted to ensure that the M-1007MS and M-1008MS offered the high quality and reliability that people expect from the LTD Deluxe "1000 Series". We started with high-quality components like a Hipshot hardtail bridge and LTD locking tuners. The guitars feature a “drop top” of thick flamed maple that’s bent over a lightweight mahogany back, and a five-piece neck made of maple and exotic purple heart wood, with a Macassar ebony fingerboard that includes offset abalone dot inlays.
Who Needs One?
There's no one kind of music or performance style that is tied to multi-scale guitars like the M-1007MS or M-1008MS. It's understandable that musicians who want to push the boundaries of what's possible on guitar are often the most interested in multi-scale, like progressive rockers and metal shredders. But just about anyone from jazzers to pop players can get the tone and feel benefits of a multi-scale like the M-1007MS or M-1008MS.