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finewoods
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« on: March 26, 2009, 12:58:16 AM »

Can someone tell me the difference between a 12 fret and 14 fret acoustic guitar?

Finewoods
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tadol
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« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2009, 01:10:13 AM »

Refers to the fret number that the body is joined at. If you reference where the top bout of the guitar meets the neck on the bass side, it is frequently the 14th fret, although a number meet at the 12th ( and a very few at the 13th! ).

It is mostly a question of how far out from your body you reach to play, but then gets complicated by the position the bridge is mounted at, determining the scale length of the guitar - You can have a 12 or 14 fret join with either a standard scale, or a shorter scale - even occasionally a longer scale!

Is that confusing enough?

Tad
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« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2009, 01:44:12 AM »

12-fret designs have their advantages, personally I think it's a superior design and I have only 1 acoustic out of 7 that's a 14-fret.  It adds volume and bass to the tone and also gives more of a sweet spot on the strings for picking.  It's really fun too for bottle neck slide, just slide on up to the guitar body and you've got a a key area available to do slide work on and your hand just stops right at it.
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« Reply #3 on: March 26, 2009, 01:48:43 AM »

Refers to the fret number that the body is joined at. If you reference where the top bout of the guitar meets the neck on the bass side, it is frequently the 14th fret, although a number meet at the 12th ( and a very few at the 13th! ).

It is mostly a question of how far out from your body you reach to play, but then gets complicated by the position the bridge is mounted at, determining the scale length of the guitar - You can have a 12 or 14 fret join with either a standard scale, or a shorter scale - even occasionally a longer scale!

Is that confusing enough?

Tad

Just to take the explanation a little further:   Having the neck join the body at the 12th fret usually (but not always) moves the bridge further down the body and generally places it in an area where the body is the widest and further away from the soundhole.  This bridge placement results in a different sound than if the same guitar was a 14 fret to the body style which is more common.  Usually a bit more thump and a little more volume.  Richard Hoover of Santa Cruz guitars came up with the idea of a 13 fret to the body with his H-13 stlye which splits the difference.  In the case of that guitar he also made the body deeper to enhance the bass as well.   It seems as though 12 fretters are considered to be great fingerpickers.
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RoundLakeDT
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« Reply #4 on: March 26, 2009, 02:17:35 AM »

In case it wasn't clear, a 12-fret and a 14-fret guitar are tuned the same.  Same notes, scales etc, so it's not like you have to play differently

12 fret is sort of like "choking up" on a baseball bat.  Same bat, used for the same thing, but does it a little differently when "choked" at 12 frets instead of 14

Dave
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« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2009, 02:55:46 AM »

Find one and play it.......you'll hear what everyone is saying.... drool

















Then your hooked......






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dragon1952
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« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2009, 03:36:36 AM »

Can someone tell me the difference between a 12 fret and 14 fret acoustic guitar?

Finewoods
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You can tell this is an adult forum. No one answered "2 frets" 
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bluesman67
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« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2009, 12:29:34 PM »

 
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lw216316
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« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2009, 01:40:00 PM »

Also -
If you play a lot of 'high notes' close to the body of the guitar
or want to make chords beyond the 12 th fret you might not be happy with a 12 fret.

So a question to consider is - ' Do I need those extra two frets ? '

...a 14 fret guitar gives you more range.

All my guitars are 12 frets. I play fingerstyle.

The 14 fret models are the most popular -more of them sell than 12 frets -
so you will find more of them in the store to choose from.

- Larry
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« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2009, 01:53:40 PM »

Quote
Also -
If you play a lot of 'high notes' close to the body of the guitar
or want to make chords beyond the 12 th fret you might not be happy with a 12 fret.

So a question to consider is - ' Do I need those extra two frets ? '

...a 14 fret guitar gives you more range.

And the way around that is a new Forum III cutaway!
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« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2009, 02:01:24 PM »

Also -
If you play a lot of 'high notes' close to the body of the guitar
or want to make chords beyond the 12 th fret you might not be happy with a 12 fret.

So a question to consider is - ' Do I need those extra two frets ? '

...a 14 fret guitar gives you more range.

All my guitars are 12 frets. I play fingerstyle.

The 14 fret models are the most popular -more of them sell than 12 frets -
so you will find more of them in the store to choose from.

- Larry

Using that logic...  electric guitars have lots more frets clear of the body giving much more range, and they are more popular than acoustics so there are more in the store to try.  (just joking!)

There are very few hard and fast rules about 12 vs. 14 fret guitars, nor are there any hard and fast rules that will describe what a given player will or won't like or what a given builder will supply.  There are build differences, ergonomic differences, bridge placement (widely variable on 12 fret guitars), etc.  The only way to figure out what a given guitar will do, is to try one.

That said, I think a 12 fret mahogany/sitka somewere between a parlor and a 00 with a soft cutaway and a 24" scale, would be nearing my acoustic guitar nirvana.

Ed
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« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2009, 02:14:44 PM »


That said, I think a 12 fret mahogany/sitka somewere between a parlor and a 00 with a soft cutaway and a 24" scale, would be nearing my acoustic guitar nirvana.

Ed

Sounds like a Tacoma Papoose...
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« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2009, 02:41:16 PM »

Well, I've got a 12 fret mahogany/sitka OO with a full 25.5" scale and it's the best guitar I've ever owned.  Until my Forum III MH/IS arrives...then it's gonna be a fight to the finish!!!

Seriously though, putting the bridge a little closer to the middle of the lower bout on a guitar really has an effect on the sound.   

I've played lots of 12 fretters, from dreads to parlors, and I love 'em!
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bluesman67
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« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2009, 02:44:55 PM »

My best sounding guitar is my Forum I, 12-fret hogtop OM.  We are looking forward to the arrival of the Forum III.
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« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2009, 04:52:47 PM »

Can someone tell me the difference between a 12 fret and 14 fret acoustic guitar?

Finewoods
1999 Larrivee Dv-05E
                      12 FRETS are WAAAAAAY cooler

danny
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« Reply #15 on: March 26, 2009, 10:35:58 PM »

Sounds like a Tacoma Papoose...

Don't they have a shorter than 24" scale, a 14 fret neck join, no cutaway, and a smaller than parlor body, and a cedar top?  Other than that, I guess it sounds like what I described.  (grin!)

Ed
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ducktrapper
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« Reply #16 on: March 26, 2009, 11:31:45 PM »

I love my 000-50 but sometimes I run out of frets. There's stuff you can't play on them.
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tuffythepug
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« Reply #17 on: March 26, 2009, 11:34:34 PM »

I love my 000-50 but sometimes I run out of frets. There's stuff you can't play on them.

Yes, unfortunately life is full of trade-offs.   
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« Reply #18 on: April 01, 2009, 10:42:36 PM »

Don't they have a shorter than 24" scale, a 14 fret neck join, no cutaway, and a smaller than parlor body, and a cedar top?  Other than that, I guess it sounds like what I described.  (grin!)

Ed

See, its close except for those minor points... 
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« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2009, 11:38:27 PM »

You can tell this is an adult forum. No one answered "2 frets" 

Actually I would have answered:
   "You won't fret as much for having an attack of GAS"

 
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