sharepoint database configuration issue

we want to play with sharepoint 2016 beta 2 and having a problem with the database (same server)
the system is 2012 R2 fully updated with sql 2012 SP2
sharepoint installed fine but during the configuration, it says it "can't connect to the database master...it might not exist or the current user does not have permission to connect to it."
firewall is disabled, all sql protocols are enabled and the application log states 'named pipes provider error 40 - could not open a connection to sql server'

i did do "sc query mssql$sharepoint" and it says it is running as well as the sqlbrowser.  not sure what else to try.
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Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorAsked:
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Rainer JeschorCommented:
Hi,
unfortunately the minimum supported SQL Server version is SQL 2014.
https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc262485(v=office.16).aspx

HTH
Rainer
Rainer JeschorCommented:
Correction: Its 2014 SP1

The 64-bit edition of Microsoft SQL Server 2014 Service Pack 1 (SP1)
Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorAuthor Commented:
unfortunately the minimum supported SQL Server version is SQL 2014

while that statement is correct (apologies for making this an RTFM issue), it didn't resolve the sharepoint config problem
i built a new vm and installed sql 2014 sp1 and had the same error in the sharepoint config

after some trial and error, discovered the way i was specifying the server and database instance was incorrect.  once i got it right, it finished successfully

separately as a POC, i went back and built another vm with sql 2012 sp2 and used the correct database format in the sharepoint config and was successful.  not supported but technically did work.

the database format string was the issue

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Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorAuthor Commented:
figured it out myself though giving points to rainer for the requirements clarification
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