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Need help selecting an 8" chef's knife

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hey guys,


I would like to start by saying that I have never owned a quality chef's knife and am not sure what to select. Anyhow, I am looking for a good quality knife that is sharp, has a good weight, and hold a edge pretty well. My price range is around $100-$180. After reading several reviews I've been edging (pardon my pun) towards these 3 knives:

Global G-2 8"

MAC MTH-80 8"

Shun Classic 8"


Some final notes:

I tried the global g-2 in-store and found the knife to be a little on the light side and the handle to be slightly small -- however not enough to make me hate the knife.


Anyhow, this will be my first time purchasing a quality knife and any recommendations/advice would be much appreciated.



Brandon Knill

post #2 of 7

Do you not want "a little on the light side"?  The trend, and I bet it's permanent, so just the "way", is toward preferring lighter knives.  Something feels groovy and primal about a heavier knife in the store, but they don't feel as good after a few minutes of actually cutting something.


There's tons on here about the relative merits of the profiles, where the Mac and Global will be more "French" and the Shun more "German"; also about the handles (whether the Global is something that's perfect for you or you won't be able to live with, the right-handedness of the Shun with the "D" shaped handle, and whether you like it anyway, or the Mac being pretty much across the board a well-liked handle), the bang-for-buck question, the edge retention (which if I'm pretty sure will be lower on the Global)....


I've only ever used a Mac in these three, so can't really say anything from experience other than that's a good knife, and I'd lean that way, others unheld.  But there's been discussion on plenty of threads here that I'm semi-summarizing, if you want to do a search.


You'll also get plenty of encouragement (I expect) to look toward a longer blade, unless you really need not to for a good reason.

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hmm, I think I'm going to go for the  MAC professional; thanks for the advice Wagstaff. I guess I just have to decide on the blade length. I picked an 8" blade because that's all I've ever used. What are the pro/cons of a longer knife blade?



post #4 of 7

I'd started a very detailed post and had to leave it to go do something else.  When I came back it turned out that most of the information was rendered redundant.  Oh well.


A longer blade allows you to cut larger bundles, make longer "push" cuts, and stays sharper longer.  In other words, it's more productive.  A 9-1/2" or 10" blade is just as agile and easy to use as an 8" providing you have a good grip and a big enough board.  If you don't have a good grip and don't care to learn, and/or you have a cramped kitchen and cutting area, stick with the shorter blade.


MAC Pro chefs, whether the MTH (dimples) or MBK (no dimples) series, are very fine knives indeed.  In fact, I get a lot of questions about knives and recommend MAC most often.  And when I give a knife gift, it's almost always a MAC Pro.  Great choice.


Saving the most important for last... Don't invest in an expensive knife until and unless you have a plan to keep it sharp.  At minimum you'll want something like a King 800/6000 combi stone and an Idahone ceramic rod hone (a "steel"), or one of the Chef's Choice "Asian" machines.  Also, you'll want a good, adequately sized, wood board. 


Hope this helps,


post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

okay, that's a lot to consider! I'm going to the store tomorrow, I think I'll be going with the MAC, thanks for the advice


post #6 of 7

I feel a little ridiculous and sorry for the OP if I somehow obviated BDL's "very detailed post" in progress... just sayin'.  It's through a history of webcached posts of BDL's that I learned a very goodly chunk of what I know about knives, and from whom I've adopted a goodly chunk of my own prejudices/predispositions re: same.


I don't feel too bad if it led to leaning toward the Mac, though!

post #7 of 7



Not at all.  Your post was was informative and enjoyable.  Not only could I not have said it better, I didn't have to try.  That's a good thing. 


Thank you so much for the kind words,


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