If you’re an acoustic guitar player or a musician searching for a trustworthy and durable 12-string guitar to buy, look no further. We’ve selected the best 12-strings acoustic guitars to help you narrow down the search. All guitars in this list will add value and the full acoustic tone to your music. Let’s ride!
We have also split our expert recommendations down further by gears and accessories. So take a look below:
- Get a better recording with the best mic for acoustic guitar
- Choose your best acoustic guitar strings for beginner
- Boost the vibration and sounds with the best acoustic guitar preamp
- Do some blazing solos with the best jazz guitar amplifier
The line up at a glance
After a series of in-depth research on several products, we’ve selected these 12-Strings Acoustic Guitars Read through each product with its pros and cons to find your guitar.
Our Picks For Top 6 12-Strings Acoustic Guitars in 2021
Yamaha is a remarkable brand for robust and reliable musical equipment. You’ll find at least a Yamaha product on every top list. This FG820 guitar is another wonderful piece from one of the best guitar producing brands. It comes in different configurations; on this list, it is one of the best 12-string acoustic guitars.
It is useful for beginners. Every beginner and upcoming pro guitar player can jump on its offer. The price is moderate for all level players, and the quality makes you think it is an expensive guitar. This instrument’s sound is louder and more precise in low and midranges; this is so because of the guitar’s scientific bracing design. The bracing holds the durable top and enhances the full acoustic sound.
Its top is made of solid Stika spruce, its fingerboard and bridge are made of rosewood, and its neck is made of Nato wood. The back and sides are made of mahogany. This guitar has a 1.81 inches nut, allowing spaces for all strings and making it easy to cover the fretboard.
Lastly, you’ll find Yamaha FG820 in different colors, including Sunset Blue, Black, Autumn Burst, and Brown Sunburst. You can get the whole pack with extra cash that contains a hard case and some accessory kit.
This fantastic guitar from Epiphone comes in a dreadnought body. The dreadnought body brings about a shimmery sound. A typical dreadnought guitar with 12-strings will equate to a less affordable price tag, but that’s not true for this guitar. It is inexpensive and highly rated among the top choices.
It is ideal for learners and modest players and has all the necessary qualities for a 12-string top guitar, including a solid build, comfortable playability, ease of usage, and impressive sounds. It also features a 1.75-inch nut width.
The top of this Epiphone model is made of solid Stika spruce, the neck is made of mahogany, and the back and sides are made of mahogany. The spruce crispness complements the warm and resonant tone produced by the mahogany body. The neck helps you get more out of the lower frequencies and adds resonance to the mid frequencies.
The tonewoods pairing brings the balance between the dark and shimmery sound. This guitar also features a poplar fretboard having dot inlays, chrome hardware, scalloped bracing, and ivoroid binding.
This guitar is a 12-string jumbo-sized guitar, and it plays like butter. Its different features supply a high-end feel, like the tortoise pickguard, NuBone saddles and nut, and the headshot emblem. You have a beautiful and unique instrument in this guitar, endowed with intricate tones.
One reason why it stands out is its acoustic-electric nature. All the features help to complement its quality. The whole body is made of solid woods to improve the tones. The passage of sound from the strings to the soundboard via the NuBone is incredible.
You will make the best use of this guitar if you’re a discriminating player who’s aiming for greatness or if you want to thrill your audience with all the best sounds of a guitar. It comes with a set of tremendous components; although it has limitations, it won’t stop you from enjoying great sounds.
It is not recommended for beginners or enthusiasts, but semi-professional musicians and guitar players. If you’re the type that loves your sound in full tone, you’ll enjoy every advantage of this jumbo 12-string guitar. It is dynamic, durable, and the body is good for the sound output.
Taylor 150e is a high-end 12-string acoustic guitar that comes with in-built electronic features for amplifying your sound when necessary. It is a classical guitar in a dreadnought body, and it projects a solid low-end response for a steady balance with sharp and crisp shimmer from all 12 strings.
This guitar neck is made of Sapele wood, and its body top is made of a solid Stika spruce. Both kinds of wood are paired with a walnut back and sides. Poplar wood is used for the middle core. The poplar wood and walnut are sufficient for the strength, durability, and resilience of the guitar. For the sound, the guitar offers a sweet midrange presence with the right, and it is pleasant to the ears.
The Treble and high midrange coming from the fingerboard complements the beauty of the instrument’s tone. Advanced guitar players and flat pickers will be pleased with Taylor 150e’s dynamic range and its crystal-clear articulation. The articulation is what comes with every Taylor high-end guitar.
This guitar also has a 1.875-inch nut width, die-cast chrome mini tuners, Micarta saddle, 3-ring rosette, black binding, and two pickups for easy plug-and-play in the audio settings.
Martin D12X1AE 12-String Acoustic Guitar
An acoustic-electric guitar with Stratbond neck with robust sounds.
+ Price is lesser for a Martin guitar
+ Suitable for budget-conscious players
+ Great electronics for amplification
– It can be neck-heavy for some players
– Some materials are not top-notch guitar standards
The Martin brand produces guitar for players of different levels. This guitar edition is one for learners and enthusiasts. The guitar industry is putting many natural resources at the risk of extinction; that’s why this guitar is made with sustainable materials that don’t affect the overall quality. For this reason, most of the Martin X series are affordable, adorable, and reliable.
The neck of this guitar is made of rust birch laminate, the fingerboard is made of Richlite, and the back and sides are made of high-pressure laminate stained with Mahogany. Most times, Martin makes use of Laminates and Richlite because they are eco-friendly. High-pressure laminate (HPL) is combined with solid Sitka spruce to deliver a rich and powerful tone. By choosing this guitar, you’re getting lots of vintage warmth.
This model of Martin guitar has a 1.87-inch nut that has space for more strings. It’s a bit wider than a regular 6-string guitar. You only have to get used to the size. It is also equipped with Sonitone electronics that get the job done.
Breedlove Solo Concert 12-String Acoustic Guitar
A cutaway-shaped acoustic-electric guitar that features a pickup/preamp system and it comes with a gig bag.
+ It features a pickup/preamp system
+ It comes with a deluxe gig bag
+ It has a cutaway shape for comfortable fretboard accessing
– The pin-less bridge makes it stressful to change strings
Breedlove is another amazing brand whose 12-string guitar is ideal for singers and songwriters. It is almost perfect and valuable with all the exciting features that come with it. The only guitar in this list that features a side monitor sound-hole. A hole located at the waist part of the side, useful for letting you hear what you’re playing and what your audience will hear.
This does not affect the guitar resonance. With the sound-hole, you’ll hear each note as you play; this is why songwriters will appreciate it better. This Breedlove Solo Concert acoustic guitar can manage stressful recordings and live performance with the in-built pickup/preamp system.
The top of this guitar is made of red cedar, the neck is made of mahogany, the back and sides are made of East Indian rosewood, and the fretboard is made of rosewood. The fretboard wood is used because of the warm tone and good balance delivery. The guitar also features a 1.687 inches nut width and a curved cutaway that helps you reach the upper frets.
Lastly, this guitar bridge is pin-less, and it possesses an onboard tuner.
Criteria used for evaluation
The type of wood used in constructing an acoustic guitar body determines its sonic fingerprint and tone and resonance. All wood types have their unique sound, and that’s why the woods used in making a guitar’s top, sides, neck, and back are known as a tonewood.
The guitar top is the most important part of a decent guitar. It has to be a solid piece. Some brands offer a spruce top, and some go for cedar wood that produces a mellow tone. Guitar tops that are cut from a single piece of lumber are the best.
Mahogany and maple woods are mostly used for the back and sides. Cherry is also a top choice for back and sides; the sounds are somewhere in-between mahogany and maple. The back and sides of an acoustic guitar are usually made of a 3-layer wood laminate. A bit of tonal quality has to be sacrificed since the layers are hardwood.
Traditional tonewoods are becoming scarce, and they have to be protected. Guitar brands are beginning to look for alternatives for these woods. One other brand makes their guitar tops made with a rubber impregnated silicone fiber called Lyrachord. It can be tuned chemically or with heat to affect its resonance.
Martin produced the first-ever known dreadnought. A dreadnought has a wider waist than a classical guitar and is the most common acoustic guitar. Its shape is effective for the large sound and even tone.
Guitars with a cutaway body enable the user to reach the highest fret without stress. Its shape does not influence the quality of sounds. Some guitar resonance is affected by their shape; it can be lost or increased, depending on the guitar design.
Scale and frets
The guitar scale is the length of the string from the nut to the bridge. An average scale measurement is about 26 inches. A guitar with a longer scale means your guitar string will be stretched to a high tension to achieve the same pitch. With a more extended scale, the difference will be felt. 12-string acoustic guitars usually have 20 or 21 frets.
Neck material and shape
For a 12-string acoustic guitar, the neck is expected to be wider than a 6-string type. The most common type of neck is the C-shaped type; it is flat in the middle. A different kind of neck is the D-neck, but it is thicker and more curved than the former type.
Mahogany and maple woods are usually used for guitar necks. Some price-friendly guitars have steel truss rods for reinforcement of the neck. It is up to a musician to select their preferred neck wood.
Rosewood is mostly used for fingerboards. It is gradually getting scarce, and guitars producing brands have started turning to purple-heart and Indian laurel woods. They are effective replacements.
There’s no flat fingerboard, they are only round, and the round shape diminishes from the highest to the lowest strings. Their radius of curvature is in-between 11 and 15 inches. Melodic plays are suitable on flat necks, and playing chords is easier on round necks.
Tuning a 12-string guitar won’t be the same as a 6-string type because the strings are doubled. You’ll need a tuning machine for that effect if you want to spend a lot of time playing your guitar. Every 12-string guitar in this article is compatible with every tuner.
Also, all the guitar nuts and bridge saddles are dense. They transmit the vibration of the strings to the guitar body effectively.
Frequently Asked Question
Every 12 string guitar has six notes, and they are two A strings, two B strings, two low E strings, two D strings, two high E strings, and two G strings. Each note is played using two strings tuned in octaves, a treble, and a bass string.
The differences between a 12-string and a six-string guitar are much. The first noticeable difference is the number of strings in both instruments. For the 12-string guitar, the tonal variety is abundant, and it is more challenging to play than the six-string instrument.