Fender CD160E-12 Reviews 5

Have played guitar for over 35 years. Have played 12 string for over 30 years. I play what I call "psychedleic country gospel": gospel music fusing country rock rhythm patterns with late-60s sounding FX.

This unit purchased at Lanham Music in Saint Joseph, MO for $350.00. I purchased this after searching for an affordable 12-string for past two years. The last 12-string I had owned I disposed of because of neck instability issues--I'd had to have the truss rod adjusted every time I changed strings.

Likes: Built-in pickup w/pre-amp and 4-band EQ (lo, mid, hi, brilliance/presence). Built-in tuner. Non-cutaway dreadnaught body. Balanced projection and tone.

So far I have no dislikes.

Solid spruce top. Mahogany laminate back and sides. 1-Piece mahogany neck. No globs of glue on kerfing. Bracing is solid and well-placed. Frets are cut and filed properly--no rough edges hanging out here.

First, although the Fender website states this model is only available in a black finish, I have found one with a natural finish. Second, Fender's website indicates the top is laminated spruce. This is a solid top--no indication that this is laminated. If it is laminated--this has got to be the most acoustically alive sounding laminate I've ever heard. In addition, the top is bookmatched--even to the bearclaw pattern evident just below the bridge. The neck is very heavy and massive. Electric guitar players would not find this comfortable, but as one who has played 12-string for over 30 years, I find it to be an indication that this should not have the neck instability problems I experienced with my previous 12-string (a Dean Tradition S-12). In addition, before I purchased this I spoke to a couple of people who have owned Fender 12-strings for several years and report no problems with the neck being unstable. The sound is very evenly balanced without sounding sterile. It has good bass without sounding muddy and a clear treble without sounding tinny. The preamp controls are responsive and well place. I certainly would recommend anyone contemplating the purchase of a 12-string to check this one out.

Dave rated this unit 5 on 2006-05-27.

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