#1
i'm talking the 81-85 combo
never used actives before. i've heard it said that they're only good with distortion. that they're sterile. they make every guitar sound the same. etc etc
i play modern metal and vintage rock
tube amp combo
#2
They do metal well, but lighter stuff, like vintage rock, not so well.

One trick ponies you might say.



#3
the 81/85 no. The 81/60 can do metal and to some lighter alternative rock and I might be yelled at for this but I really enjoy the cleans of the 60.
Gear
Peavey Vypyr 15
Peavey Windsor head
Avatar 2x12 with V30's

Custom Ibanez RG
ESP EC-1000
#4
I've seen EMG's in basses of all genre's. As for guitars... rarely... an 81/85 combo... Never.
Quote by breakdown123
Is there such a thing as a heavy riff with out chugging on the e string?
#5
Yes and no.....

They're best suited for genres which use quite a lot of distortion cause with actives you're naturally pushing your amp quite hard. That's not to say you can't get other tones out of them, but it's not gonna be what they're best suited for.

At the end of the day it depends what you're after, they will be great for metal, probably pretty good for rock. But for me personally, if you go much softer than rock I would say you would be better off with a nice pair of passives. The EMGs will give you decent tones for most genres and an excellent metal tone.

Of course, there's a million and one other variables in your gear that affect what tones you can get pickups are only a small part of it.

So, in conclusion, EMGs excel at genres which involve lots of gain, but can be used for pretty much all genres...they just won't be as good at the others as they are at metal.

Someone who actually has EMGs will be aveilable to give you more help...I'm not overly keen on them myself and would always choose a nice set of passives first, but that's just personal preference
Guitars: PRS Custom 24, PRS EG3, PRS Santana SE, PRS Tremonti SE, ESP-LTD M-200FM

Acoustics: Maton EM225C, Washburn WD-42S, Ovation Tangent

Amps: Peavey 5150 Mk 1, Randall V2, Marshall JCM2000 DSL100

Cab: Framus FR212
Last edited by idiotbox919 at Dec 18, 2009,
#6
guess i gotta try them out first
i surely don't like the way they look, so they might go up on the sleazeBay anyway.
#7
Quote by sethp
guess i gotta try them out first
i surely don't like the way they look, so they might go up on the sleazeBay anyway.


haha yeah, just give them a try and see what you think...you never know, you might love them
Guitars: PRS Custom 24, PRS EG3, PRS Santana SE, PRS Tremonti SE, ESP-LTD M-200FM

Acoustics: Maton EM225C, Washburn WD-42S, Ovation Tangent

Amps: Peavey 5150 Mk 1, Randall V2, Marshall JCM2000 DSL100

Cab: Framus FR212
#9
Depends, can you learn to EQ differently and turn the volume knob on your guitar down? If you can, EMGs are quite versatile. If you can't, you're born to be on the anti-EMG bandwagon.

If clean or low gain tones are gonna be important, I'd suggest a 60/85 or 60/89 or H HA/85 combo and not the 81. EMG81s are cold and kinda sterile sounding.
No gods, no countries, no masters.
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#10
Quote by sethp
i'm talking the 81-85 combo
never used actives before. i've heard it said that they're only good with distortion. that they're sterile. they make every guitar sound the same. etc etc
i play modern metal and vintage rock
tube amp combo

If you put them in a good wood like Mahogany or Sapele, you'll get a much better sound out of them because they take a lot to the natural wood tone of the guitar due to low DC resistance. People say they're sterile because they always put them in the most sterile wood around, Maple (most guitars that feature these pickups are maple necked, through-body instrument with Floyd roses, which don't help the matter any).

You can make them work for other genres, especially if you use the 18 volt mod and work with your volume knob, but I wouldn't specifically choose them to play Jazz (although they do have a pickup aimed at Jazz players).
Quote by drewfromutah
Ask Claudio Sanchez.

And Steve Lukather, and David Gilmour, and Reb Beach...
Quote by STABxYOU
Depends, can you learn to EQ differently and turn the volume knob on your guitar down? If you can, EMGs are quite versatile. If you can't, you're born to be on the anti-EMG bandwagon.

If clean or low gain tones are gonna be important, I'd suggest a 60/85 or 60/89 or H HA/85 combo and not the 81. EMG81s are cold and kinda sterile sounding.

This guy knows his shit.
And yeah, the 81 can be very sterile due to its ceramic magnet and winding. The 60 (and 60A, but even the ceramic one) is much nicer, as is the 85, and the old 58. I would personally get some old EMG's form the 80's if I were to get them, before they came out with the solderless connectors. Get the old 2 conductor EMG's or go to their custom shop for a nice 89/58 4 and 2 conductor (respectively) or a 58/60A setup (both with 2 conductor leads) and live in tonal bliss.
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
Last edited by Shinozoku at Dec 18, 2009,
#11
if you find a guitarist playing with 81/85s he(or she) probably normally plays heavier stuff. My guitar teacher plays hard rock and uses 81/85s they kinda ruin the sound of his JVM, but thats my opinion
Gear:
LTD Viper-50
LTD V-250
Line 6 Spider iii 15
Randall RX120R
Boss ME-50
#12
^Strange, I think the JVM sounds just as good with actives as it does with passives
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
#13
Quote by Shinozoku
^Strange, I think the JVM sounds just as good with actives as it does with passives


not for thin lizzy and AC/DC though
Gear:
LTD Viper-50
LTD V-250
Line 6 Spider iii 15
Randall RX120R
Boss ME-50
#14
Well obviously Unless he's playing channel 1 on green and cranking the master to 11 with an 18v mod on the pickups and maybe the guitar volume on 9
Then there's this band called Slice The Cake...

Bunch of faggots putting random riffs together and calling it "progressive" deathcore.
Stupid name.
Probably picked "for teh lulz"

Mod in UG's Official Gain Whores
#15
in my opinion you can make them sound warmer and more versatile if you use the 85 in the bridge and maybe a 60 for the neck rather than the 81/85 or 81/81
periphery/bulb!

gear:
Ibanez RG7321 w/ D-sonic in bridge

Peavey 5150 mk ii & b52 4x12 cab

line 6 podxt for recording

Quote by AsOneIStand
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Last edited by nutinpwnsgibson at Dec 18, 2009,
#16
As long as your not using the 18 volt mod on your EMG's and turn the volume down on the pickup a bit it can do any genera with lots of character. I like EMG's cause it pushes my Classic Rock voiced amp to the Metal genra. But I have pulled some excellent cleans and blues tones out of em, you just have to have an amp with alot of character, not some metal voiced amp, then it makes them sound steril.

And if you use full volume on the pickups it also makes the sound steril, so back off on the volume, us very little gain, and it'll sound good. I dont care what everybody thinks, if you back off the volume on a EMG 81 then it will produce very nice cleans, without distorting.
#17
It's really hard to try and type up an impartial answer to this question when you've got a user title like mine.

Guess I'll just say this: No. Get some good passives and live in sonic bliss.
Quote by Marty Friedman
Because I bend in such an unorthodox fashion; the notes kinda slide up and slide down...
#18
the 81/89 sounded kinda buzzy in my jvm and the 81 lacks clarity compared to the burstbuckers, so i traded off my schecter and the epi les paul for a 1959 which sounds great.
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