#1
Hi! Planing to buy an Ibanez with EMG 81 and 85 and just wonder how good allround pups they are. I know they are awesome for metal, but how are they for classic rock or cleaner sounds?
#3
For metal they're pretty dang good...but versatility is not their strong points. They could handle the classic rock tones pretty well but you really have to play with them to get a decent clean sound. The 85 has so much more output than the 81 so if they're in a les paul like mine with a three way switch whenever you flip to the 85 from the 81 on a clean setting the guitar volume gets annoyingly louder. If you're gonna play with distortion most of the time there is nothing wrong with them....but for both clean and high gain i highly recommend the duncan JB/59 setup.
#4
Quote by JBailey23
For metal they're pretty dang good...but versatility is not their strong points. They could handle the classic rock tones pretty well but you really have to play with them to get a decent clean sound. The 85 has so much more output than the 81 so if they're in a les paul like mine with a three way switch whenever you flip to the 85 from the 81 on a clean setting the guitar volume gets annoyingly louder. If you're gonna play with distortion most of the time there is nothing wrong with them....but for both clean and high gain i highly recommend the duncan JB/59 setup.


You might need to play with them if you have just got one channel in your amplifier.. But I think that EMGs do the job pretty good for both metal and cleans. Naturally, they're probably not the best pickups ever, but they're the pickups I'll get as well.

As far as the Duncan recommendation goes, JB is good for classic rock, blues and even metal, but it doesn't really master any of them. 59 is a really nice neck pickup though, got some nice sounds from it while playing with a Schecter C-1 Classic through a Blackstar HT Club at the local guitar store.
Gear pics

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#6
Ok, btw the pickups are in the guitar as standard (RGT6EXFX) I'm not buying new. But I've got a Zoom G2.1 Nu so I guess I could play around with the sound a bit.
#7
Don't go with the emg for versitility. I'm talking from expiriance. You want to go passive for that. I would recommend a lace deathbucker in the bridge and a standard alumitone in the neck you can coil split them and there is no volume drop. They are very well rounded. Plus Zero Noise. If you are dead set on active and emg get the 81 in the bridge it will do metal and clasic rock np and a 60 in the neck the 85 is really nice for bassy solos but it gets muddy cleans.
THE GEAR The Gear
Ibanez RGA121
Epiphone Les Paul Custom
Schecter V7 Black Jack
PRS SE Custom 24
Ibanez S470
Line 6 Spider Valve 2x12
Last edited by Briyan_15 at Jan 19, 2012,
#8
@sakke, i got a JCM2000 so its a 2 channel...idk its just preference though. To me the JB just rocks but i do like my emgs....its good to have diversity when having multiple guitars.
#9
Yeah, but I think the next guitar will be some Les Paul model Ive already got a Strat copy (150$ Behringer :P)
#10
they definitely aren't the most versatile thing in the world but they aren't bad at all. if you have the ability to, i'd swap out the 85 for a 60 in the neck.

that said tho, they are very articulate and extremely responsive to pick attack with cleans
#11
@ville525, if youve played that ibanez and you're in love with it go for it. With stock pickups like those I'm pretty sure the rest of it will be on par as well.
#12
they're pretty much foot-to-the-floor all the way

though they clean up fairly well with teh volume control. but they still sound a bit "hi-fi", for want of a better word.
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