#1
I am just wondering if the chord shapes for 12 string guitars are the same/or similar to those of a regular 6 string guitar. How are the guitars similar?
Thanks!
#2
12 strings have an extra octave above the main 6 strings typically

so yes, same chord shapes unless you wanna get crazy, but that's kinda not the point
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#4
Quote by Hail
12 strings have an extra octave above the main 6 strings typically
Well no, they don't. They have an extra octave above the: E-6, A-5, D-4, & G3. E-1 and B-2 strings are unison pairs. (Just striving for complete accuracy here).


Quote by Hail
so yes, same chord shapes unless you wanna get crazy, but that's kinda not the point
Agreed, they do in fact, play exactly the same as a 6 string.

Quote by sydrock
so theoretically if you can play 6 string you can play 12 string?
Absolutely, but you might need a stronger fretting hand!

Because of the higher string tension, 12 strings are usually tuned to D-D standard, then capoed when it comes time to play. Keeping them tuned to "concert pitch", (E - E standard ), usually shortens their life.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 24, 2012,
#5
Yes, absolutely. No difference other that the fact that on a twelve string you are essentially playing the same note one octave apart. It's like playing low e and the 2nd fret on d at the same time. It sound really awesome though.
#6
Quote by Captaincranky
Well no, they don't. They have an extra octave above the: E-6, A-5, D-4, & G3. E-1 and B-2 strings are unison pairs. (Just striving for complete accuracy here).


yeah, i caught that after i posted but didn't really care too much.

you should really try a 12-string before just buying one - they really are pretty situational, and there are so many options available you really might not want to just play it like a 6 string all the time. my .02
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#7
To play leads, sometimes it is a good idea to choose the lower 4 strings at higher positions. this is so you don't wind up soloing on an octave pair, then cross over to a unison pair as you go up a scale. It can be a buzz kill if you do this.
#8
are 12 strings mainly used for playing chords?

by the way thanks a lot for the help this has cleared things up for me
#9
more or less, yeah, but that's not their only possible purpose.

still, there's a reason jimmy page put his 12 string on a double neck with a 6 string to switch to.
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#10
Quote by sydrock
are 12 strings mainly used for playing chords?
The acoustic 12 is mostly used as a rhythm instrument.

However, Roger McGuinn, formerly of the Byrds has made a career out of playing a Rickenbacker 12 string.

Another former "Byrd", Chris Hillman, started, (the now defunct.),"Desert Rose Band", Which also uses the 12 string quite a bit.

For the rest of us, it's a luxury,not a necessity, and can get tiring if you try and play a whole set on one.

I always joke that a 12 is, "the best", for playing 60's & 70's protest songs. "The Eastern world, it it exploding......."Crimson flames tied through my ears.....et al.

You can google those lines if you're not familiar with the genre....
#11
Quote by Captaincranky

Because of the higher string tension, 12 strings are usually tuned to D-D standard, then capoed when it comes time to play. Keeping them tuned to "concert pitch", (E - E standard ), usually shortens their life.

well these days i dont think thats much of an issue as i think they are built to better handle the tension. plus you could always get lighter strings as well. i like tuning down to Eb on electric and acoustic but on acoustic i mostly go down to D so thats not an issue with me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esHVE53zSms

OP, they are usually used for chords/rhythm playing but you can do anything you want on it really as this video shows. he had pretty large/strong hands though.
#12
Quote by Blind In 1 Ear
well these days i dont think thats much of an issue as i think they are built to better handle the tension. plus you could always get lighter strings as well. i like tuning down to Eb on electric and acoustic but on acoustic i mostly go down to D so thats not an issue with me.
I'm sorry here but I missed the point of your quote of me. Is there actually a difference between "tuning down to D to D standard", (my quote), and "I tune acoustics down to D", (your quote). It seems like we're saying the exact same thing, except I'm wrong.

As far as "built to better handle the tension" goes, unfortunately trees haven't changed much in millions of years, and you can only make a sound board "x" thick, and its braces "x" stiff, before sound stops coming out the way it should.

Many makers ship their acoustic twelve strings with .010 to .047 set sets from the jump. and that's as about as light as you can buy normally.

Obviously, a solid body electric will handle more tension, plus you can get 12 string sets for them with .042 bottoms. I can't imagine how an acoustic 12 would sound with these strings.


Quote by Blind In 1 Ear
OP, they are usually used for chords/rhythm playing but you can do anything you want on it really as this video shows. he had pretty large/strong hands though.
Don't you just hate show offs like this.? I also saw Roy Clark, ("the banjo guy") play "Malaguena" on an Ovation 12. Reasonably speaking though, these feats are well beyond the reach of a great many players.

I had a Guild maple jumbo 12 string once. These shipped with .053 bottoms. It was the most beautiful sounding, unplayable guitar, you'd ever want to own..

Then there was my Ovation "Matrix" 12 string. This had a great low action, so I kept lights on it, and left it tuned to concert pitch. After a few years, the soundboard had stress cracks in it, with the exact shape of the braces.....Didn't seem to buzz, then it got stolen, so I never did figure out how the story ended....
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 25, 2012,