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Clean 12-string?
by tigerlen on 2011-09-04 06:39:53.5230


I'm very new to all this, so apologies if I'm don't use the right terms etc.

I'm looking for a preset on the POD HD to match Bon Jovi's Wanted Dead Or Alive setup. There seem to be a couple of 12-string presets ('cheap' and 'dirty'), but they're not right for this. Also, I've looked at the custom tones on the website and couldn't see anything there (although I haven't actually imported and tested them out).

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Kind regards,


Re: Clean 12-string?
by Nick_Mattocks on 2011-09-04 08:23:55.7010

Hi Lenny

For that kind of Dead or Alive sound you really need a 12 string electro-acoustic, an electric guitar with piezo undersaddle bridge pickup or a Line 6 Variax/James Tyler Variax guitar. 

You may find something suitable in a synth style guitar or a guitar synth but realistically most synthesised attempts i've heard at getting a 12 string acoustic sound haven't been great.

The POD HD does not include a 12 string acoustic emulator effect and the two you mention, whilst not bad if you needed something to sound like a 12 string guitar in the context of a bigger sounding 'band' mix won't really deliver what you're looking for sorry.

The James Tyler Variax series guitars do include acoustic six and twelve string models and the twelve string model would allow you to get pretty close to what you are after whilst allowing you to switch to electric guitar for the power parts of the song as well as the solo, but you'd need a mimium of about £950 GBP to secure one new (JTV-89) which is possibly something different to what you had in mind.


Re: Clean 12-string?
by relayerjb on 2011-09-04 11:13:07.9690

Try a Morpheus Capo Pedal.  IIRC it doesn't just give you octaves of all 6 strings (like most processors).  It can create the octave of the lower strings while recognizing the high E and B and simply doubling them, like a real 12 string.  Sounds much more realistic.  Also doesn't cost nearly as much as a Variax ;-)

Re: Clean 12-string?
by Nick_Mattocks on 2011-09-04 11:45:24.6080

Interesting.  I've just taken a look to see what this pedal is about.  It seems pretty quick and clean with tracking with minimal warble from the demos I've seen on-line.   The cost here in the UK is marked up at £163 GBP which is a lot cheaper than a JTV certainly.  It's hard to tell how good it really is at emulating a 12 string.  It didn't seem to be bad from what I've heard and it certainly seems quite impressive from what I can tell.  For a true acoustic feel though if you're using an electric guitar with normal humbucking pickups it does sound like an electric guitar on the demos I've seen.  it would probably sound closer to an acoustic using a Strat mixed middle and neck or middle and bridge pickup position 2 or 4 on the five way switch or using an electric guitar that hsa undersaddle piezo pickups.  From what I've just heard, this pedal does make a good stab at it, but the JTV has the edge by quite a way IMO in terms of an authentic sounding acoustic 12 string model but as you point out a JTV costs quite a bit more.


Re: Clean 12-string?
by relayerjb on 2011-09-04 12:26:19.3730

Yea, it won't give you an authentic acoustic 12 string...  sorry, I should've clarified that.  But it will give the right voicing for the strings.  And you could just play an acoustic 6 string.  The harmonizer fx on most other modelers create an octave higher of all the strings, which sounds really bad if you want a 12 string sound.  I've also never heard a really good acoustic modeller that you can use to turn an electric into an acoustic... The one in the Boss GT series is sort of passable if you're playing with a whole band but really doesn't cut it.

Like you said, you either need a piezo pickup or a Variax or Roland midi type guitar...  the Strat VG series had a pretty good acoustic sim.

Re: Clean 12-string?
by tigerlen on 2011-09-05 15:12:57.2330

Thank you both so much for your advice. Perhaps a question for another thread, but can you recommend the Variax guitars? Wonder if it's worth buying?

Re: Clean 12-string?
by Nick_Mattocks on 2011-09-05 16:00:58.3750


Yes.  I own 4 electric Variax guitars.  Two of them are from the newer James Tyler Variax series (JTV-59 and JTV-89) and two are from the older first generation series (Variax 300 and Variax 700).

The JTV series guitars are better quality guitars than the older original Variax models and the JTV series have proper magnetic pickups as well as piezo pickups and electronic modelling technology built in, so you have a normal electric guitar and a modelling guitar all in one package.

The JTV series have pretty good acoustic models including 12 string models built in as to be fair do the first generation guitars, however the modelling technology is much improved.  Out of the box I'd say the default 12 string models need a little adjustment to sound their best, but with Variax WorkBench software this is easy enough.

The 'street' prices of the three Korean variant JTV guitars in the UK seem to be (in GBP):

JTV-89 (quite similar to an Ibanez RG series guitar in looks and feel) £949

JTV-69 (similar in styling to a Strat - comes with tremelo) - £1049

JTV-59 (similar to a classic design like the Les Paul) - £1099

An older Variax 700 will cost you about £699 and doesn't have the magnetic pickups, but it will do a good job modelling the 12 string sound you want as well as being able to model a Strat or a Les Paul or any one of a number of guitars.


Re: Clean 12-string?
by tigerlen on 2011-09-05 16:39:03.2930

Thanks again. I had my eye on the Epiphone Ultra 3 which should be out any time now and ought to cost c.£549. This has a so-called nano-mag pickup that simulates an acoustic guitar. Do you think it might be possible to do something with that to get the 12-string effect?

Re: Clean 12-string?
by Nick_Mattocks on 2011-09-06 00:54:29.8650

tigerlen wrote:

Thanks again. I had my eye on the Epiphone Ultra 3 which should be out any time now and ought to cost c.£549. This has a so-called nano-mag pickup that simulates an acoustic guitar. Do you think it might be possible to do something with that to get the 12-string effect?

In theory, if the nano magnetic pickup produces a decent acoustic sound in the first place you'd be half way there I guess, but you'd still need to introduce pitch shifting and I'm not so sure on a clean sounding acoustic patch that's going to sound very good with chords (it can sound OK if the guitar sound is intentionally distorted and you are detuning by a semi-tone or so as any glitching tends to get buried by the distortion anyway, but it is still there in reality).  Even if the pitch shift can be added to the signal chain relatively cleanly using the POD's Pitch Glide effect or Smart Harmony effect with the mix balance set accordingly between the real sound and the pitch shifted sound, all the strings would be shifted up by an octave and it would be similar to the Cheap or Dirty 12 string patches in the POD HD.  

I don't think it would be anywhere near good enough personally unless the Epiphone already has built in signal processing to emulate a 12 string acoustic (sorry I'm not familiar with the spec on this guitar).

The JTV series on the other hand, will give you an acceptably good 12 string acoustic emulation in my opinion as will the earlier Variax 700, but both are more expensive if bought new than the Epiphone. 

Some people have not taken to the JTV series for whatever reason and have actually sold them on eBay for less than the current retail price (not many), so that is a possible source, but as a second user you may experience issues if you need to claim any warranty work.

I'm not trying to persuade you either way to buy a Variax, but for me doing exactly that would be the best option I think, unless you opted for a weighty double neck guitar with undersaddle piezo pickups built in on the twelve string side.  Maybe look at a Tanglewood double neck guitar or Epiphone's EDS-1275 which with some appropriate EQ treatment might just do a good enough job with the standard magnetic pickups. The Epiphone EDS-1275 is not much more expensive than the Ultra-3 you're looking at, but it is a heavy and somewhat cumbersome guitar compared to any normal six string.


Re: Clean 12-string?
by tigerlen on 2011-09-06 03:44:41.7100

Thank you so much for your help. I really appreciate it.

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