Gold Tone AC-12 Banjo With 12 Inch Rim and Scooped Neck

5.00/5 - 1 review

New product

The Gold Tone AC-12 Beginner Banjo with 12 inch Rim

The AC-1 is now available as the AC-12 with a 12 inch Rim

The Gold Tone AC-1 is now available as the AC-12 with 12 inch rim instead of the standard 11 inch rim of the normal AC-1. The 12 inch rim is one inch larger in circumference can provide a deeper mellower tone if that's what you prefer.

The AC-12 model with 12 inch rim and scooped neck will work great for leaning and playing Old Time and Clawhammer Banjo Styles.

A 12-inch, full-featured old-time openback banjo for this price? YES. The Gold Tone AC-12 is the latest addition to our ever-more complete lineup of clawhammer banjos. It has everything the new old-time banjo player could want: a generous 1 7/16" string nut width (our ZeroGlide nut comes standard), a separate rosewood fretboard on a nato mahogany neck with frailing scoop, an adjustable two-way truss rod with peghead-located adjuster, a durable and great-sounding 12-inch composite rim with coordinator rod for fine action adjustment, a good-looking and functional tailpiece for easy string-changes and proper down-pressure. Ultra-light at just FIVE POUNDS (!!!), this featherweight can save your back while you trudge around the festival grounds. All this and a serviceable gig bag for just chickenfeed.

The AC-1 and AC-12 banjos are in my opinion are the best beginner banjo's in this price range by a long shot. I've never seen or played a better lower priced banjo for beginners. They sound great and are easy to play and learn on. I highly recommend this one if you are shopping for a low priced beginner banjo. I've been teaching private banjo lessons since the 1970's and selling banjos online since 2001 so I've seen a lot of them.

List of FREE Items Included with this Banjo

  •  Free 1 YR Access to Silver Members Lesson Site
  •  FREE Zero Glide Nut Installation ($75 value)
  •  $20 Flat Rate Shipping
  •  Professional Banjo Set up
  •  Free Padded Gig Bag
  •  Free US Shipping
  •  $30 Intl. AK, HI Shipping Credit
  •  Price Matching or Questions 1-866-322-6567

FREE ITEMS don't add to our normal discount price which is the lowest price we are allowed to advertise by the Manufacturer.

The AC-1 won "Best at Show" at the NAMM show in Nashville this year (2016).
That's a big deal. There were at least 800 vendors there as well as other major Banjo vendors.
Best in Namm Show - Goldtone AC-1
Makes a Great Travel Banjo or Easy to Play Practice Banjo
If you a more experienced banjo player and already have a primary banjo the AC-12 makes a great travel or light and easy to play practice banjo too. It weighs only 3lbs and 10 ounces so it's perfect for beginners, on the go and also for kids to learn banjo on.

Banjos at come set up and ready to play
Each banjo is played before it leaves the shop!
Along with the strict quality control that Goldtone is known for and the banjos being checked very carefully before being shipped, each banjo is given a 12 point inspection, full head tuning, setup and will arrive tuned and ready to play

Call us with questions anytime
1-866-322-6567 or contact-us

TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK - Not expected until end of May 2024

More details


  • NO - Planetary Tuning Pegs
  • YES - Install Planetary Tuning Pegs $79
  • NO- Gold Tone Ultimate Mute
  • YES - Add Mute at Discounted price - 19.40


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or Price Match on Banjos 1-866-322-6567

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Zero Glide Nut Installed FREE
All Gold Tone Banjos from now come with the Zero Glide Nut installed FREE
The Zero Glide makes the banjo action easier to play, increases the sound clarity and is a significant improvement for any banjo. Installation by a professional is normally done at a cost of $75 or more. It's now installed FREE on all Gold Tone Banjos.
Read more about the Zero Glide


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More info

AC-12 Specs






Scale Length


I was at the NAMM show and played the banjo. This is just what the banjo market has needed. A low priced beginner banjo for "newbie" banjo students on a budget that is not a piece of, (pardon me), junk. Having a new banjo of this quality in this price range will also help to save beginner banjo students that are shopping on a budget from buying a cheap used one that may need repairs or is unplayable. I've seen it happen often and it can literally stop a students dream of learning banjo dead in it's tracks. Not only is AC-1 in that price range but it's solid and works great. All banjos we sell including the AC-1 all come set-up and ready to play, they include free banjo lesson instruction DVD, free online banjo lesson access and a low priced beginner package with all you need. I'm serious about how good this banjo is to learn on. The banjo is stable, stayed in tune and the intonation was perfect. You don't need problems with a banjo when you are just learning to tune one for the first time.

Ross Nickerson at Namm Show in Nashville
Ross Nickerson, Owner of
at Nashville Namm Show (2016)
with the Goldtone AC-1

The AC-12 uses the composite body. Harmony made a composite banjo back in the 70's that a lot of students of mine had and they worked good. This AC design is a way better banjo than those though. It has a wood neck which those didn't and when I played the Gold Tone AC-1 the intonation was perfect up and down the neck. The composite body is an efficient method for producing a  bright, loud sounding 5-string banjo to learn on. In my opinion the composite design is tons better than the aluminum "bottle cap" banjo design that has been around forever. The bottle cap is the 30 bracket design that you see today on the beginner Washburn, Fender and Epiphone models as well as a host of other generically named Asian banjos. Gold Tone in general is a cut above any of the banjo brands that just stamp there name on imports like newer models of Fenders, Washburn and Epiphone banjos. Gold Tone is a banjo company that designs banjos for banjo players... by.... banjo players.

Jan 22, 2024
It’s really well made for the price.
UPS brought it yesterday. It’s really well made for the price. Perfect to practice on, I like the wide neck.

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