NAMM 2024: Ciari Guitars, the company behind the world’s only pro-quality and stage-ready folding guitar is now available with twin P-90 pickups. The Ciari Ascender was previously available with Fishman Fluence pickups built-in, but now the Nashville brand has added the blues and punk favorites as an option.
Both spec choices are part of the Ascender Plus range and come with a rechargeable battery. That’s a big cost-saver in the long run as the duo of pickup options offer two completely different tonal personalities to its unique folding guitar range. The P-90 model costs $1,699 whilst a Fishman-loaded model rises to $2,099.
P-90 pickups have been used by everyone from Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong to Neck Deep, Muse's Matt Bellamy and Dean DeLeo of Stone Temple Pilots. They're seen as the middle ground between biting single coils and warm, fat and rounded humbuckers, ultimately offering a 'best of both worlds' tonal character.
It’s not the only new addition to the wanderlusting guitar range. The all-new Ascender Standard Plus comes with a sleek gloss finish and binding, which are two new features with the Ascender line-up. It replaces its previous and rugged-looking satin finish. It’s available in white with black binding and an inverted option of black with white binding. Both come in at $1,999.
However, the two-tone design might not be for everyone. Realising this, the luthier boffins at Ciari have also crafted a flame top burst finish, which is available upon request.
Developed with acclaimed luthier Joe Glaser, Ciari's foldable guitar looks to add professional-level quality to the world of travel guitars, which can be seen by many as something of a gimmick. The full-size guitars, which go against the shrunken-down scaling of many other travel instruments, can be folded in half to fit in overhead lockers of planes and trains, or slung over your back when travelling.
They have a 24.75" scale length necks and are made up of basswood bodies, mahogany necks and ebony fretboards which stretch across 22 medium jumbo nickel frets. The guitars also feature 3+3 headstocks, Ciari locking tuners, a Tune-O-Matic bridge and controls for volume and tone alongside a three-way pickup selector.
The new color options follow the Ascender standard's colorful offerings. Those guitars were available in white, black, seaform green, blue and red.
In Guitar World's recent review of the Ascender Standard model, the act of folding the guitar in half – something which may feel alien, or even unholy to many readers – is said to look far more intricate and intimidating than it actually is.
“Nothing about the process of folding or unfolding the guitar compromises its structural stability or the integrity of its setup and swift playability,” the review states. “It unfolds into a fully-fledged pro-level instrument.”
The Ciari Ascender has been a mainstay at NAMM, which gets a buffed upgrade ahead of each event. 2024 is now different, with tonal and aesthetic upgrades helping further emphasize that this isn’t just any travel guitar.
For more information on the Ciari Ascender, head to CiariGuitars.com.
To stay up to date with all gear releases ahead of NAMM 2024, head over to our guide to the latest NAMM 2024 news.