Best 12-String Guitar for the Money

There is nothing like a pinch of that majestic sound of a 12-string guitar.


There is nothing like a pinch of that majestic sound of a 12-string guitar. If you need to take your music to a new level by adding a sophisticated and gentle vibe, getting one of these amazing instruments is a way to go.

This instrument is capable of giving a regular guitar sound a whole new dimension and extra depth as the player is actually strumming two strings instead of one. We went ahead and sifted through all the items offered on today’s market to find the best 12-string guitar for the money. Our results await below.

This is the best 12-string guitar for the money

Epiphone DR-212

Epiphone DR-212 Acoustic Guitar

We’ll kick things off with a budget friendly, yet incredibly top-notch option known as the Epiphone DR 212. This 12-string delivers an amazing punch that you will have to test out yourself to believe us. It’s a mixture of quality components and affordable price that we highly recommend.

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The guitar sports a mahogany body with a select spruce top, and a neat 25.5 scale. Also included in the mix is a top-notch mahogany neck, not a common feature with guitars of this price range at all. Additionally, the instrument packs a classic rosewood fretboard with 20 frets, and a very strong set of string tuners.

When you wield this number of strings, it is essential that an instrument doesn’t go out of tune, and these die-cast boys do a fine job in keeping the axe tight at all times.

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The implementation of a spruce top was one smart move by Epiphone folks, as it added a massive improvement in terms of sound, giving the DR 212’s output a breath of freshness, warmth and brightness. The tone is basically what you’d expect from a typical high-quality 12-string, except at a much, much lower price.

Martin D12X1AE 12

Martin D12X1AE 12-String review

Now if you’re looking for creme de la creme of acoustic guitars, you know what they say – get a Martin! And this guy, known as D12X1AE, is no exception, as it offers some of the best audio output of the 12-string realm. The sound, the features, it’s all top of the line stuff.

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This is an acoustic-electric guitar that sports a set of Fishman Sonitone electronics, mahogany body and top-rate neck and fretboard. Everything about it screams high end, yet the price remains fairly affordable. Sure, you might have to scrape by a bit to save the money, but it will be well worth the effort.

Additionally, the instrument utilizes a set of very quality die cast tuners that will keep the 12-string in proper tune and shape at all times.

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The meaty bit. In short – amazing! To elaborate, the mahogany body provides this guitar with an incredibly clear tone that pierces right through the mix, but also with a healthy load of bass and a strong middle punch to keep up the groove. The electronic department features an additional set of controls that allows you to truly adjust the sound of this Martin to fit your needs and requirements to a tee.

Oscar Schmidt OD312CE

Oscar Schmidt OD312CE review

Up next is another steal, and a bit of a hidden gem of the 12-string domain – the Oscar Schmidt OD312CE. Top-notch stuff all the way, highly recommended.

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The guitar features a fine mahogany body with mahogany back and sides, and a select spruce top. This is an acoustic-electric guitar that utilizes a set of electronics by Oscar Schmidt Acoustic Electrics featuring an active MET-A07 preamp with an on-board digital tuner for easy tuning. Speaking of which, the instrument’s die-cast tuners are also quite strong and more than capable of getting the job done.

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Warm and fuzzy would be the proper description. The guitar offers quality vibe on all fronts, and easily stands up against the listed Epiphone model, but with a slight difference – stronger bass. So if that happens to be your thing, go ahead and treat yourself with a brand new Oscar Schmidt.


In a nutshell, these three models offer the absolute best sound you can get within their respective specified price ranges, making each of them the best 12-string guitar for the money. Level up your sonic experience today, they’re all highly recommended by players and sound aficionados!


  1. Never Epiphone, always Martin.
    Sure, you should start on a cheap guitar, but by that I mean a cheap SIX-STRING guitar.
    If you are positive about getting a 12 string, then the least you can do is get a good one.

  2. I hate music snobs like the guy above me who commented. C’mon man, what if someone wants to experiment with a 12 string and doesn’t want to invest thousands of dollars into it?
    Ever thought of that? Epiphone makes fine 12- string guitars, don’t listen to that guy!

  3. Good picks, I’d go with the Martin if I had no budget worries – which I of course do. So there’s bits of awesome stuff for everyone here, nice job in bringing everyone together with good choices