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I'm afraid my trusty Sigma is about to require some significant repairs and it may be more cost effective to replace her. While obviously a Taylor or Martin would be optimal, my budget is much less.
Does anyone have any suggestions for a good instrument in the $500-$700 range? Any suggestions are greatly appreciated!!

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A Seagull fits into that range.
One of the members of this group is a real fan of his Takamine 12...you might ask him. his name is Ed Ballard.
I have played one of these models and found it quite nice. You might also check out one of the Guild GAD models, hte JF-30 12 is quite nice. Good luck and keep us posted on what you find!
Edward
http://mysite.verizon.net/emsparks/index.htm
Simon & Patrick (made by Godin as is Seagull) also makes a very nice 12 string in this price range.
Hi Steve,

I have a Washburn and it is real nice. Also, it is in your price range. Great sound/electronics. Of course, I bought it used for a lot less than the upper reach of your price range.

Check the bridge and make sure it is "totally" glued direct from the factory. I just had mine re-glued and what a difference a little tweek makes.

Really, I wish I played it more. Guess that is why I added my name to the group list. Inspiration!

Will
I've got a Yamaha FG720S 12-string and I think it sounds really nice. You can find them in the low to mid $300 range. Another one I've played that I couldn't afford at the time was the Alvarez AJ60S12. It's a jumbo that is totally awesome. It was in the mid-500's when I was looking but I think Alvarez is about to discontinue them so you might be able to snag one at a cheaper price.

The Alvarez has a very low action and plays like butter. The tone is quite balanced for a jumbo. You certainly get the good lows but the mids and highs come out very well too.
+1 for the Seagull.

I like the Breedlove Atlas line as well, but that's just a tad higher. Might be worth a look, if you can come up with the extra cash.

Here's one.
I've been looking on eBay at used Guild 12s built in China, specifically the F212 and G212. They are in the $600 - $800 range and I've heard very good things about them. They are all solid wood, nice looking, and have decent tuners. Has anyone here tried one of these instruments?
I own a 1995 Washburn D13S-12 which cost $500 back then. Solid spruce top, ovankol back and sides, no electronics. It is very easy to play; barre chords are no problem. Not great projection, but adequate. The sound hole is slightly smaller in diameter than on most dreadnaughts, so I had to do some shaving on my Dean Markley pickup to get it to fit. My wife and I have been very pleased with this guitar. I have long felt that you get a lot of bang for your buck with Washburn guitars. Not sure what current models are available or what they cost, but I'd check them out. My guess is that Washburn will be one of the best 12-strings in your price range. (No, I don't work for Washburn or one of their dealers!)
Check eBay... it's a buyer's market and you'd be surprised at some of the bargains going on there. Search for Taylor's 355 12-string... you might get lucky and that would be a GREAT guitar for a price perhaps only a little more than you are hoping for. You're better off saving a few hundred dollars more vs. buying something cheap. I've had mixed results with Alvarez, sometimes great and sometimes lousy so I would not buy another one without written confirmation that the intonation is dead-on, etc. Washburn makes a nice guitar and I believe that would be in your price range as well. Good luck with your search and let us know how you make out. Here's a link to a nice 355: http://cgi.ebay.com/Taylor-Model-355-12-String-Jumbo-Acoustic-Guita... My suggestion is that you don't worry about electronics now and acquire the best guitar you can afford. The K&K Mini pickup system is superb and can be added later at a very reasonable cost. Also, the Taylor's come with a GREAT 5-ply hardshell case that will protect your guitar forever... Upgrades on the 355 would be the 555, 855 but now you are looking at twice as much as your budget. I'd definitely save a bit more and go for the 355.
PS: I'd take the 355 over all of these... except for perhaps the "Lawsuit Martin" by Takamine shown 1st

http://cgi.ebay.com/1978-Takamine-12-String-lawsuit-Martin-Copy-exc...:

http://cgi.ebay.com/Martin-D12X1AE-12-String-Acoustic-Guitar-BEST-O...

http://cgi.ebay.com/ALVAREZ-MASTERWORKS-MD8012-12-STRING-ACOUSTIC-G...

http://cgi.ebay.com/Alvarez-Yairi-DY72-1986-12-String-Acoustic-Guit... (Yairi is the top of the Alvarez line...)

http://cgi.ebay.com/Alvarez-PD80S-12-String-Professional-Series-/26...

http://cgi.ebay.com/Alvarez-PJ311CDVS-12-12-String-Jumbo-Acoustic-E...

http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-Washburn-J28S12DL-12-String-Acoustic-Guitar...

Also, if you decide you want to buy using eBay then may I suggest that you visit www.esnipe.com and sign up with your eBay account name and password. That inexpensive service will allow you to place bids electronically at the last possible moment so you don't get into a bidding war and jack up the price of the guitar you are after. It defaults to placing the bid for you at 6 seconds from auctions end... I wouldn't go below 3 seconds or your bid may not get placed. Also, if your maximum bid is $995 but you only need to beat the current $765 bid by $10 then esnipe will only place a $775 bid. I've acquired a lot of top end equipment this way and saved a fortune. You can sign up using your (free0) PayPal account for as little as $5 or $10.
I've recently came upon an Ibanez 12-string which is pretty nice.
Yamaha LL16 12. Great solid woods and construction. Great sound. A little over the price range you indicate.... but check for a used one. Good luck.

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