I couldnít satisfactorily spec a custom 8 string for myself, and that is largely in part because of the Stef B8.
I may have said this before but Stefan Carpenter has had a lot of different signatures with ESP for over 20 years, and I always had my eye on them because to me, ESP is the premier luthiers in the world. Of course, that is a personal opinion, and it bears no weight whatsoever on anything past my own taste and purchase.
Since the B7, the 7 string neck through with EMG 707, came out back in like 2000 or so? If someone has more historical knowledge on Stefís models, please chime in, but I can remember for ALMOST 20 years, definitely at least 15, I have been eyeing and eyeing the ESP signature page.
Something else I may have said is Iím not a Deftones listener. I have now started to like them, but I wasn't familiar with their work before getting this guitar, so at least I also learned about an awesome band as well. However, I am an SSO listener; so I read and read and after so many threads, the Fishman Fluence thread sealed the deal for me in terms of a quest.
I was really wary of the set, but I got a brand new 7 string and installed it into my Ibanez. It sounds amazing. Like, until I got this 8 string CS, my favorite pickups on earth were the Fluence SRC set. Now I love all kinds of pickups: Dimarzio Tone Zone/Air Norton or Piaf Pro, Lundgren M7/m8, EMG 81/85, LAce Deathbucker/humbucker, Dimarzio Blaze, SD SH4/JB , to give you an idea.
For me, the Modern Fluence set sounded amazing, but the SRC set is more scooped like the 81 profile, so I was very very happy with the bright scooped clarity of the pickup....so I then really started to have GAS for the 2016 updated B8 as they replaced EMGs with Fluence
For the life of me, As i said, I could not come up with anything to spec a custom for myself that I didnt already see in the B8. Actually, what made it slightly difficult to decide was the price, because the B8 street price is $4k usually. In any case, I noticed Nick @ the Axe Palace had the B8 (2016 version) in stock, and I contacted him. I got it the next day.
I couldnít spec a better guitar, mock up a better design, or out create the wonderful creation and development that has become the 2016 revised B8. While it is not a personally designed custom shop, it feels like every bit as one to me, and I woundít change a THING about it, and I really mean that in all truth, otherwise I probably couldíve waited for another axe....
For all those whoíve wondered as I did - the Middle Hum sounds just like a lead pickup, but barely, barely noticeably different from the neck, in fact, i would say theres no difference except that it allows/encourages you to pick past the pickup, like the bridge - which adds a little attack obviously but nothing to sully a clean lead, and I think these are the best pickups Ive ever heard, to me.
Fishman Fluence SRC Signature
Fishman Fluence SRC Signature