Chapman Guitars are a relatively young company, but have already made a big name for themselves in the competitive guitar industry. Established by renowned YouTube sensation Rob Chapman.
Chapman guitars were the first to “collaboratively” design their models with the public, most notably involving Rob’s army of adoring fans and subscribers.
Recently expanding their range and splitting it into two with a Standard and Pro line, Chapman Guitars offer high-quality instruments at affordable prices.
History of Chapman
With the company founded in 2009, the first model Chapman unveiled was the ML-1. The intention of the ML-1 was to be the best and most-versatile guitar available for the price (£299 at the time). This instrument featured a Strat-style body shape, reversed Tele-esque headstock, mahogany body, maple neck, ebony fretboard and an HSS pickup configuration. Although the guitar was simple aesthetically, the idea was to be able to easily customise the guitar with improved electronics and hardware, acting as a ”blank canvas”.
This model was followed by the ML-2, a dual humbucker-equipped LP-style guitar with similar tonewoods to the ML-1. These first two models were produced in limited runs, so to meet demand and improve the quality of the guitars, Chapman moved production to World Music Instruments in South Korea.
From this milestone, Chapman started mass-producing a range his models, introducing the Tele-influenced ML-3 Modern and Traditional instruments, as well as the Explorer-inspired Ghost Fret. Signature guitars for Chapman himself (ML-3 RC), Dorje bandmate Rabea Massaad (ML-1 BEA) and Lee Anderton (ML-1 CAP10) followed, as well as some limited run models such as the ML-1 “Norseman”.
The company also started producing 7-string models, the ML-7T and ML-7S. With Swamp Ash and Mahogany bodies respectively, these instruments featured natural finishes and neck-through constructions, punching way above what their price-points suggested. Received well, the company’s first bass model (the MLB-1) was also released on the market.
In 2017, Chapman released a huge number of new models at the Winter NAMM show. Splitting their range into two (the Standard and Pro series’), updated versions of previous models as well as new signature guitars for Rabea Massaad and YouTube star Rob Scallon were unveiled. New Baritone models also joined the range, and the long-awaited ML-V made its first public appearance after much anticipation.
The standard range includes most of Chapman’s core models at a more affordable price, within the reach of beginner to intermediate players. The Pro range guitars feature high-quality hardware choices and improved craftsmanship, with satin finishes and high-output pickups.
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