#1
Hi forum people,

I have decided that I want to change the pickups in my guitar to active pickups. I am also going to buy a guitar with passive pickups and change them to active.

So, first, How much does it usually cost in like a guitar shop to change?
Second, how hard is it to do it yourself?
Third, Are there any passive pickups that sound like active pickups such as an EMG 81?

Thanks alot
#2
i'm doing the same thing...i've got a passive single coil strat and i'm building a new guitar with active emg 81/85 set.

do the wiring yourself...there are tons of tutorials here about it (check the GB&C threads) and emgs are actually solderless connections so it'd be pretty silly to take it to a guitar shop and pay them to plug pieces together.
#3
Only do it yourself if you feel comfortable routing space for the batteries.
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#4
having 2 guitars with actives might be overkill? They do tend to take away a guitar's natural sound so most with actives sound quite similar.
Pup kit for something like the EMG 81/85 set with controls, wiring, jack and battery holder will cost probably $200-$250 plus a good bit if you get a shop tech to fit them for you, depending how much work is needed on your guitar. Doing it yourself will need ok soldering skills at least, but if your guitar's cavity is not big enough to hold the battery block things could get hard very quickly.
Really, If you are planning a guitar fitted with actives, you'd be best to stay with passives in your current one. There are a lot of pups that give similar tones so you'd be looking for something with quite high top end and boosted bass. Irongear have their Steamhammer and Hammerhead (around 14k) models just for that purpose. Up the scale a bit is the very hot BKP Warpig (22k) whilst the Rock Monkey SOB (26k) is an absolute monster and great value for a handwound pickup.
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T C Ellis Series 2 LP w/Skatterbrane Quiescence pups
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#5
How would I route a space for the batteries? Is it just standard 9v batteries?
#6
ok

1. maybe from 50 to 100 bugs plus the cost of the pickups
2. i really dont know...i'm not good at it and i'll recommend train at cheap guitars before you do it at your baby
3. yeah i think the Emg hz sound like the actives...atleast they come close
#7
Just checked out those Rock monkey Pickups and they sound good. Is the S.O.B close to the sound of an emg 81 since that is the pickup I was going to choose?
#8
Quote by irollemphat
i'm doing the same thing...i've got a passive single coil strat and i'm building a new guitar with active emg 81/85 set.

do the wiring yourself...there are tons of tutorials here about it (check the GB&C threads) and emgs are actually solderless connections so it'd be pretty silly to take it to a guitar shop and pay them to plug pieces together.

You still have to solder in the solderless connections. Guitars without EMGs stock don't have those fancy solderless clips in them.
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#9
Ask the man. He's a member here and has a good reputation for service etc. I might think the samples sound good and something like my actives, but you might think they are nothing like EMGs. Really any pup over 20k resistance is up there with EMG output and will want a nice valve amp to push. It you use SS, save some money and go with one of the Irongear ones. They'll probably sound better with that setup.
I pick up my guitar and play
Just like Yesterday

T C Ellis Series 2 LP w/Skatterbrane Quiescence pups
Cort EVL-K6
Yamaha RGX211 modded
H&S Electric 12-string
Shaftsbury Ricki 4001
'84 Fender Yale
Roland Cube 15x

#10
Quote by Jim #4
ok

1. maybe from 50 to 100 bugs plus the cost of the pickups
2. i really dont know...i'm not good at it and i'll recommend train at cheap guitars before you do it at your baby
3. yeah i think the Emg hz sound like the actives...atleast they come close


Oh good! The guitar I want comes with them as stock!
#11
I have a Blackstar HT-5 stack (tube amp) Playing the amp with my guitar now sounds ok but not tight or prenounced enough (if that makes sense!)
#12
Quote by justinb904
You still have to solder in the solderless connections. Guitars without EMGs stock don't have those fancy solderless clips in them.


you can purchase wiring kits online. got mine for 40 bucks on ebay. the only thing i'll have to solder is the input jack.
#13
Soldering can't be that hard. Just put a bit of solder on the iron and then put it where you want it to. Or am I wrong? Sorry I have basically never soldered before!
#15
how much do you plan on spending for your other guitar? Also to answer your question actives tend to require that you replace all the pots and need a complete rewire so if you aren't good with soldering you might want to take it to a tech. Ususally if you buy the pickups from a place, they'll install them for free so you should check it out. They make a pickup called a Dimarzio D-Activator which are supposed to sound like they're actives.

if you're looking for active pick ups you should check out the guitar I'm selling on ebay(in my sig)
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once a girl and i promised to never leave each other

since that promise was broken

i dont make promises any more
#16
Quote by UKMaster
Soldering can't be that hard. Just put a bit of solder on the iron and then put it where you want it to. Or am I wrong? Sorry I have basically never soldered before!


it's very simple, but do your research and practice a few times before you even think about touching your guitar with an iron. there are tons of videos on youtube and look on the UG forums. lots of good advice from people who know what they're doing (and some bad advice from people who have no idea...)

this: https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1019006
#17
Quote by megano28
how much do you plan on spending for your other guitar? Also to answer your question actives tend to require that you replace all the pots and need a complete rewire so if you aren't good with soldering you might want to take it to a tech. Ususally if you buy the pickups from a place, they'll install them for free so you should check it out. They make a pickup called a Dimarzio D-Activator which are supposed to sound like they're actives.

if you're looking for active pick ups you should check out the guitar I'm selling on ebay(in my sig)


I would buy it right now but I live in the UK and wouldn't want to get it delivered all the way from the U.S incase of any damage. Otherwise sounds awesome!
#18
I really want that B.C rich jr v but It's a bit too expensive otherwise I would definately. I have about £400 and over here they go for about £550 Maybe I should just wait and save up a bit more
#19
Quote by UKMaster
I really want that B.C rich jr v but It's a bit too expensive otherwise I would definately. I have about £400 and over here they go for about £550 Maybe I should just wait and save up a bit more


well actually, 400 pounds~600 us dollars, that is more than enough for it, if you really want it send me a pm and we could set up a deal
Quote by EndTheRapture51
Anyway I have technically statutory raped #nice

Quote by EndThecRinge51
once a girl and i promised to never leave each other

since that promise was broken

i dont make promises any more
#20
keep your old guitar and save up for a hellraiser
HILT!

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