#1
Hey,

So I have looked and looked and I can't really find any definitive answers to my questions.

I have a 2008 Gibson Flying V and am looking at putting in some EMG 81/85's in as I almost exclusively play metal at pretty low tunings and have other guitars for when I wanna stray away from playing brutality.

This being said though, I am not entirely sold on the idea of having to make any actual physical modifications to the body of my guitar (routing etc) but have heard that the battery fits neatly without any real modification, just can't seem to verify this.

Another thing I have heard that is EMG's sound terrible without having a decent tube amp, well I do not, yet. I have a Nu-X 30w digital amp.

So I guess my questions are;

Can I install EMG's without having to terrorize the body of my guitar?

Will it sound crap through my amp or will it just not sound as good as playing it through a tube amp?

Thanks
#2
EMG's are of standard humbucker size. You need to house the battery somewhere, but in most cases it will fit into the control cavity.

Take a 9v battery, wrap it in foam and place it into the cavity. If you can close it easily, then you don't need to do any modifications to the body.

Using active pickups with a solid-state amp is not detrimental. "Terrible" is subjective. I can't guarantee that it will sound good. If it sounds bad it's not because the pickups are active.
#3
Yes, you can do it without having to terrorize the body of the guitar. I've had friends who have done the mod without any difficulty.

You'd have to try it through the amp. I'm sure you can get an okay sound.
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#4
The EMGs wont have their best sound through a digital amp. Doesn't mean they don't deliver what they should. You'll still get the clarity, response and sustain they're known for. I found once I switched to a tube amp that they really opened up more and found a little more overhead with them and better harmonic content.

As for the guitar, the battery compartment is small (one 9v) and really doesn't take up much space so even if you had to route for it, it really shouldn't effect things much at all.
#5
Yes you can do it without any mods to the body. I had an EMG in my Gibson V for a while. I will warn you that there's not much room for the battery. I got it in there but it was a tight fit.

I've played EMG's through a SS Peavey Vypyr 30 and it didn't sound bad at all. I don't know about your amp though.
Last edited by zakkwyldefan79 at May 30, 2010,
#6
Given it's Flying V you should not have any problem fitting a 9V battery in the wiring cavity.

Active EMG pickups doesn't necessary make any non-tube amp sound worse. It just works much better on good tube amp where it's possible to drive the tube with very high output signal.

There are amps that cannot handle very high input and will sound like shit but most out there should be able to sound just fine.
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#8
Actually, one quick thing I should probably check on before I go and drop $350 on these: The set seems to come with 2 Volume and 2 Tone knobs, but the V has 2 Volume and 1 Tone, can it be rigged to run off just what I have?
#9
No, because EMG's have a different output impedance to passive pickups, and hence require different value potentiometers (which they are supplied with)

I think the wiring diagram will show you how to wire it up with 1 tone control.
#10
I just wanna state for the record that I used to own a Peavey Vypyr 30 and I played my EMG loaded Explorer through it and it didn't sound bad at all. Now I have a Mesa Single Rectifier and I don't think the EMG's sound as good as they did with the Vypyr. They just don't sound as distorted as the 500T in my Gibson V (I put the stock pickup back in it). I figured they would sound better with a great tube amp but I don't think they do.
#11
Quote by sashki
No, because EMG's have a different output impedance to passive pickups, and hence require different value potentiometers (which they are supplied with)

I think the wiring diagram will show you how to wire it up with 1 tone control.


Right, I should have worded my question better, I'm OK with replacing the 3 that are there with the EMG knobs. It's just I don't really want to have to make room for a fourth.
#12
Quote by zakkwyldefan79
I just wanna state for the record that I used to own a Peavey Vypyr 30 and I played my EMG loaded Explorer through it and it didn't sound bad at all. Now I have a Mesa Single Rectifier and I don't think the EMG's sound as good as they did with the Vypyr. They just don't sound as distorted as the 500T in my Gibson V (I put the stock pickup back in it). I figured they would sound better with a great tube amp but I don't think they do.


Ah, well I have no intention of getting rid of the 496/500 so If worse comes to worse I can put them back in and save EMG's for later or sell them.
#13
My post was more about how people on here say "EMGs only sound good with tube amps". In my experience they sounded better with my SS Vypyr than they do with my Mesa Rectifier. It's all opinion. You might like how they sound with your amp, but you might not. Like you said, you can always put the stock ones back in if you don't like them. I was just sayin' I think they sounded better with my SS amp than they do with my tube amp.