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Thread: Ryder solid body octave mandolin review

  1. #1
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    I have been playing a Ryder solid body 4-string electric octave mandolin for a few months now and thought I would share some of my experiences. First a quick description: it has 2 humbucker pickups, Schaller tuners, an ebony fretboard and a simple solid body with sea foam green gloss finish. (picture below) I typically play through a Boss GT-6 guitar effects processor and a tube amp.

    I play in a church worship band, mostly contemporary music with a pretty hard driving rock beat. I have found the octave mandolin to be a marvelously versatile instrument. Tuned GDAE, an octave below a standard mandolin, a simple one finger barre on the two low strings and a lot of distortion produces a marvelous heavy rumbling power chord that will go almost as low as a standard electric guitar. (Note: guitarists often drop the low string to D to be able to do the same thing on guitar.) Adding the two high strings with simple variations on the barre power chord gives a minor, minor 7, and 7th chords. The 5th's tuning is a real stretch on the low end of the fretboard for lead scales, but above about D on the low G string, scale based lead parts really scream if you flip the switch to the lead pickup.

    Overall, I'm thrilled with this instrument. It's awesome and a great way to live out those rock and roll fantasies!
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    Obsessed with four strings...

    Alan Duncan

  2. #2
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    Hey 4String,

    Nice octave there. #What's the scale length?

    I'm a big octave fan. #I play an acoustic octave with a fishman soundhole magnetic pickup that works pretty well, but I can't do the things you are getting.

    Recently, I got a 18" scale electric mandola that I really like -- it'll howl like you are describing, yet sound quite nice played more like an acoustic.

    I've had a few electric mandolins, but have never been able to get sounds that I like. #The longer scale octaves and mandolas are quite playable and the sounds are fantastic.

    That really is a cool looking instrument and I bet it sounds fantastic. #If you ever post any sound clips, let us know.

    Good luck. #Hoyt




  3. #3

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    Is that a string through bridge design? I would have thought the two humbuckers would take up most of the picking area, but they seem nicely spaced. I like the color too.

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    I think it's 21 or 22 inch scale...not sure. Ryder has a website www.sjryder.com with some more information. I paid about $1300 with the extra options. I also have a Ryder 4 string solid body electric mandolin with two single coil pickups...looks like a little telecaster.

    Yes, the strings go through the body.
    Obsessed with four strings...

    Alan Duncan

  5. #5
    Is there a "talent" knob? taboot's Avatar
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    Most of Steve's instruments have strings running through the body. And even on my two humbucker mandolin, I get quite a marked tonal difference between the two...

    Christian
    Christian McKee

    Member, The Big North Duo
    Musical Director, The Oregon Mandolin Orchestra

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