PRS's Robben Ford signature guitar is here at last

Robben Ford holds his new signature PRS McCarty guitar
(Image credit: PRS Guitars)

Electric guitar titan Robben Ford first took to social media to show off his in-development PRS signature guitar well over a year ago. 

In late August of this year, meanwhile, Ford took the instrument for its first public spin at an intimate Helsinki club gig with a Finnish jazz trio.

Now, PRS has finally unveiled the Robben Ford Limited Edition McCarty signature guitar in all its glory. You can see (and hear) Ford take it for a spin in the demo below.

Like your typical top-of-the-line McCarty model, Ford's signature guitar sports a maple top, mahogany back, and a 25", 10" radius mahogany neck with 22 frets. Ford's model, however, features an African Blackwood fretboard, rather than the usual rosewood, and "old school" bird inlays.

Sounds on the instrument come by way of a pair of Robben Ford signature pickups, branded with Ford’s personal seal, and controlled by individual volume and tone controls, a three-way toggle pickup selector, and a single mini-toggle switch (another unique addition) that splits both pickups into single coils.

Hardware, meanwhile, is finished in nickel, and comes in the form of a PRS Stoptail bridge with brass inserts, a bone nut, and vintage-style tuners. 

“As a guitarist, everything is important. All the details have an impact," Ford said in a statement (opens in new tab). "The willingness of Paul and everyone at PRS to dig deep and refine based on my feedback as an artist has been priceless.”

“Working on this guitar with Robben has been such an enjoyable experience," added Smith in a statement of his own. "He pushed us hard to get every detail just right, and in the end, I think we have made an exceptional guitar that feels and sounds as good or better than many of the vintage instruments we hold as our teachers.”

Only 200 examples of the PRS Robben Ford Limited Edition McCarty will be made in 2022, PRS says (opens in new tab). Each guitar will be hand-signed by Smith (on the front of the headstock) and Ford (on the backplate). A Ford logo also adorns the guitar's truss rod cover.

We don't have exact price information as of press time, but given that it's a limited run model, an autographed one no less, we don't expect it to be a clearance rack item.

For more info on the model, visit PRS Guitars (opens in new tab).

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Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player (opens in new tab). Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder (opens in new tab) and Unrecorded (opens in new tab). Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.