#1
Hey, I recently bought a Schecter with SD Blackouts (see my gear in sig) and Im wondering about the pup height. Now I have 2 guitars with actives, LTD with EMGs and Schec with SDs. When I installed the EMGs, the package said that I should set them as high as possible as the magnetism is very little (compared to passives). So now, the SDs are set very low (compared to my EMGs on the LTD) on the schecter.

Im wondering, should I also set the SDs as high as possible? (or how high?)

thanks in advance
Jonathan
#2
It's not that you 'should' set active pickups high, you just can if you really want to. With passive pickups this will really murder sustain and tuning stability, but with active pickups you can push it just that little bit further before anything bad happens. That said, with both active and passive pickups having the pickups further from the strings improves clarity and response to more subtle playing techniques, so if you want to get the most out of your playing then you should set the pickups further away, regardless of if they're active or passive. If you just want to hit your amp hard with a big mid-range spike and make a big inaudible wall of noise, stick the pickups right under the strings.
SD Blackouts are slightly weaker than EMGs in terms of output but also have a slightly larger magnetic field, so typically you should set them slightly further away than you would set EMGs, but it's not a huge difference.

Personally I set my active pickups to be the same height as any low- or medium-output passive pickup would be, usually about 1.5cm away from the strings, if not a little more. Seems to be the best spot for response for most pickups, though of course every model is slightly different.
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#3
Quote by MrFlibble
It's not that you 'should' set active pickups high, you just can if you really want to. With passive pickups this will really murder sustain and tuning stability, but with active pickups you can push it just that little bit further before anything bad happens. That said, with both active and passive pickups having the pickups further from the strings improves clarity and response to more subtle playing techniques, so if you want to get the most out of your playing then you should set the pickups further away, regardless of if they're active or passive. If you just want to hit your amp hard with a big mid-range spike and make a big inaudible wall of noise, stick the pickups right under the strings.
SD Blackouts are slightly weaker than EMGs in terms of output but also have a slightly larger magnetic field, so typically you should set them slightly further away than you would set EMGs, but it's not a huge difference.

Personally I set my active pickups to be the same height as any low- or medium-output passive pickup would be, usually about 1.5cm away from the strings, if not a little more. Seems to be the best spot for response for most pickups, though of course every model is slightly different.


uh Blackouts have more output than EMGs... and even the manual says you should put the pickups a lot closer to the strings than you would passives...
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#4
Correction: Blackouts spec out to have more output than standard EMGs. That does not mean they actually generate a stronger signal in terms of what hits your amp. The more closely matched coils of the Blackouts cancel more frequencies, which results in a weaker tone; they've offset this by increasing the flat boost the pickup's preamp gives but that hits the amp in a different way. Basically, Blackouts take what you would normally get and just increase the volume, kind of like just sticking a boost pedal in there. EMGs don't artificially increase the volume as much, instead they give you more frequencies that you just plain wouldn't get otherwise. Overall this adds up to more output too but in a different way.

Think of it as being the difference between one massive guy jacked up on steroids punching you in the face (Blackouts) vs three regular guys smashing your teeth in (EMGs).



And no, the height thing is just a case of companies know that most of the people buying these sorts of pickups are metalheads and putting the pickups closer to the strings gives stronger output so a person can chug a one-figer drop-tuned powerchord and feel like a big man with his oh-so-epic active pickups. That does not mean it is what you 'should' do, it is just something you can do. What you should do, if you want the best response, is put the actives exactly where you would put any passive pickup.
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#5
Quote by MrFlibble

putting the pickups closer to the strings gives stronger output so a person can chug a one-figer drop-tuned powerchord and feel like a big man with his oh-so-epic active pickups.




The guy is right, you should experiment with pickup height and put it where it sounds best, most likely you have more output than you need, so you shouldn't raise the blackouts too much.