Has Herman Li just teased an upcoming PRS signature guitar?

Herman Li
(Image credit: Herman Li/Instagram / Miikka Skaffari/FilmMagic via Getty)

Herman Li has offered his social media followers a first-look glimpse at a lavish, ultra-colorful custom PRS electric guitar, which he unveiled via a side-by-side shot with his flagship Ibanez EGEN18 signature guitar.

Is this a sign hinting at an upcoming collaboration between the DragonForce guitarist and the brand? The truthful answer is, probably not, at least not in this guise – given the appearance of Ibanez’s locking tremolo system, the guitar in question is likely to be an extremely custom PRS build.

Still, it’s one darn crazy PRS build at that, and one that warrants closer inspection.

There’s a lot to address, though perhaps the best place to start is the unusually crafted body shape, which seems to bear a stronger resemblance to his Ibanez guitar than it does to any incumbent PRS currently available.

The slightly elongated upper cutaway, paired with the deeper low cut, gives it a unique silhouette. This is further emphasized by the diminished distance between the bridge and the bottom of the body, which sports a striking purple burst finish.

As for pickups, Li’s standard HSH configuration features, comprising a pair of seriously rad rainbow-hued Fishman Fluence pickups and a Fishman Fluence single-coil. In terms of controls, there’s a blade selector switch, as well as master volume and master tone controls.

And, in perhaps the biggest giveaway pointing us to the conclusion that we won’t be seeing this particular model on shelves anytime soon, Li has fitted his PRS with Ibanez’s locking tremolo Edge Zero bridge system.

The plot thickens with Li's response to a fan who quizzed if he was a PRS artist or a free agent, simply stating, “I am a guitar loving artist.” Ambiguous.

As well as the Ibanez-inspired body shape and bridge, Li further implemented the brand’s distinct flavor by way of the neck, which he told a commenter has a “similar style of neck [profile]” to an Ibanez.

After all that, there’s only one point of discussion left to unpick: "Herman Li 2021 or Herman Li 2007", which one are you taking?

Nonetheless, it’s been a busy year for PRS in the artist department, having unveiled Mark Lettieri’s Fiore model and John Mayer’s new-look Roxy Pink Silver Sky. Furthermore, a further addition could still be on the way, with Robben Ford recently teasing a PRS signature of his own.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.