#1
Ive been looking to replace my agile al-2500s pickups for awhile and finally decided to get an active pickup set. Of course i immediately thought emg's but heard alot of better things about the blackouts. What are the differences between the 2?
#2
To be totally honest, not much. The only real difference in the pickups is that the SD's only needs one 9 volt to sound like the EMG's with 2 9 Volts.

People say they can hear the difference, but it's really just a mental thing, they hear EMG's and think sterile, they hear SD's and think they sound like passive pickups.

It dosen't matter which one you go with, both are expensive as hell, and both are worth the money.
#3
Played both...went with the Blackouts. Significant difference in tone! More mids in the SDs for sure, and they sure seemed hotter as well.
Ibanez RGR421EXFM, Michael Kelley Vex NV, Ovation Celebrity. Carvin V3
Peavey 412M w/Eminence Wizards & Swamp Thangs, Rocktron Hush Super C, Furman PL-8C,15 band EQ, Boosta grande, ISP Decimator, Dano EQ, Ibanez TBX 150,TC Elec Polytune
#4
EMG's sound like..Well, EMG's.
Blackouts bring more of the tone of the guitar out, And makes it a little more natural sounding.
Guitar - Washburn X-50PROQ
Amp- Ibanez TBX15r (using to run my POD through)
Pedals - Line6 POD X3, Dunlop Crybaby Gcb-95
#5
In my opinion, the Blackouts felt more like passives, and lacked the edginess of EMGs. In terms of tone, Blackouts feel like middle ground between true passive pickups and EMGs. It has also been said that moving EMGs to 18v helps to make them more organic, like the Blackouts, but meh... I don't agree with that.

Ultimately, try them both under as near equal circumstances as you can get.
Epiphone Les Paul goldtop (EMG 81/85)
Epiphone Les Paul Custom
Fender Telecaster MIM
Epiphone SG Special
Jay Turser JT200 Serpent (GFS Crunchy Rails/Crunchy Pat)
Dean V-Coustic
Ovation Celebrity
Bugera 333-212
Crate Blue Voodoo 120H