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#1
The title pretty much says it all. It'll be mostly for thrash/heavy metal but being able to get that classic Ritche Blackmore-esque sound is sometimes important and being able to get some decent cleans is always a plus.
#2
Getting ''decent cleans'' depends on your amp and how savvy you are with your EQ, not the pickups.

"Thrash/heavy metal" also isn't terribly descriptive, given the vast range of tones that the many players of those genres have used.
But as a general rule, a set of regular EMGs running at 9v will have the most compression, running the same set at 18v will give you a bit more headroom, Blackouts have a bit more headroom on top of that and EMG X-series have virtually no noticable compression effect (of course, with high gain you're always going to get compressed dynamics). That's the main difference between the two manufacturers. All three lines of pickups have several models to get any type of tone, so the whole EMG vs SD thing basically just comes down to how open or compressed you like your dynamics to be. If you like compressed dynamics, regular EMGs. If you don't, EMG Xs. If you like just a little bit, Blackouts. There's also the SD LiveWire series, though I haven't tried those myself so I can't comment on how they fit in.

As for the tonal balance, that really depends on your amp and what xact kind of sound you're going for.
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#3
Any reason you are going for actives? I love both sets, but it seems like it might be better for you to go for a good set of passives. If I had to choose between those sets though, I would go Blackout every time. They just seem more versatile to me, and I love how they sound In a LP type guitar...People are also going to ask:
What's your current guitar?
Budget?
Location?
What amp do you have?
#4
^agreed, you could get some good passives that give you all of that, but, between those definitely the blackouts
#5
Sorry to hijack your thread mate, but what the heck does headroom and compression mean? I've heard these tossed all around, but I've never really gotten a good explanation. Also, I play EMG's through an Eclipse and it sounds amazing.
Quote by luxeion
i keep asking my dad for wood. but he keeps getting annoyed (he's working on a house). and i'm too young to go outside.

Last edited by StrykVladzimsky at Mar 15, 2012,
#6
Quote by StrykVladzimsky
Sorry to hijack your thread mate, but what the heck does headroom and compression mean? I've heard these tossed all around, but I've never really gotten a good explanation. Also, I play EMG's through an Eclipse and it sounds amazing.

Headroom in a practical sense is the amount of gain you can input to an amplifier without distortion occurring. The more headroom, the more gain you can input without clipping.

Compressing a signal makes it more even in volume. In practical terms, a light touch of the strings will have just a great of an impact as hitting the strings has hard as you can. The volume will be the same when a signal is compressed. The more you drive an amplifier, the more compression you get as a result. Lead players like to have a lot of gain because the compression effect that it brings gives players more sustain.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
Last edited by T00DEEPBLUE at Mar 15, 2012,
#7
Currently have an Ibanez RG420eg (now broken)
Yea I should have mentioned I will be getting a new guitar and wanted to know what pickups would be best to have come with them. My budget for a new guitar is pretty much $1000
I'm in Los Angeles.
I use a Line 6 Spider IV 120W. Yes. I've heard it before. It is a shitty amplifier. But I will have to make due with it for another year or two. I don't want to get a guitar that is specifically for this amp though.
#8
Okay, I somewhat get it, thanks
Quote by luxeion
i keep asking my dad for wood. but he keeps getting annoyed (he's working on a house). and i'm too young to go outside.

#9
Quote by Jasonconfused
Currently have an Ibanez RG420eg (now broken)
Yea I should have mentioned I will be getting a new guitar and wanted to know what pickups would be best to have come with them. My budget for a new guitar is pretty much $1000
I'm in Los Angeles.
I use a Line 6 Spider IV 120W. Yes. I've heard it before. It is a shitty amplifier. But I will have to make due with it for another year or two. I don't want to get a guitar that is specifically for this amp though.


One thing about running actives through a Spider is that it makes everything worse. I've never been please with the [EMG -> Spider] set up (and, yes, I'm saying this from first hand experience...music stores suck around here and don't carry much else). Your best bet would be to put money into a nice tube amp that will play nicely with actives.

And to answer your initial question: Blackouts.
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#10
Quote by bAngiel01
One thing about running actives through a Spider is that it makes everything worse. I've never been please with the [EMG -> Spider] set up (and, yes, I'm saying this from first hand experience...music stores suck around here and don't carry much else). Your best bet would be to put money into a nice tube amp that will play nicely with actives.

And to answer your initial question: Blackouts.

Yea that's been made clear to me but I just need a new guitar ASAP so the amp will have to wait.
#11
Mr. Flibble probably already covered this, but I always felt like the SD's sounded more open, and 'breathed' better, if you will.
OBEY THE MIGHTY SHITKICKER
#13
For me personally, I love the Emg 81/60 combo.
You get great distortion in the bridge position, great cleans in both the middle and neck position, and great tone for soloing in the neck position.
Just my opinion and what works with my set up.
Jackson DK-2 [2004 MIJ] (EMG 81/SA)
Jackson RR-3 [2007 MIJ] (EMG 81/60)
Ibanez RG370DX [2009] (EMG 81/60)
Epiphone Les Paul Custom [2004] (EMG 81/85)
Ltd/Esp M-17 7-String [2013] (EMG 81-7 set)
Bugera 333XL 120watt Tube Head, Crate BV412 Cab
#14
Quote by Chaz-6(sic)6
For me personally, I love the Emg 81/60 combo.
You get great distortion in the bridge position, great cleans in both the middle and neck position, and great tone for soloing in the neck position.
Just my opinion and what works with my set up.

Which is why I've been looking at this bad boy
http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/esp-ltd-deluxe-ec-1000-fr-electric-guitar
#15
OK, listen carefully. GET A NEW AMP. I know you need a new guitar, but go to Sam Ash/Guitar Center in Hollywood, trade in your Line 6, get a guitar for about $500 (check used) and a tube amp for $700. Do this and thank me later.
#17
Quote by Jasonconfused

I've tried that guitar, but without the tremolo, and I loved the feel of it.
And yeah, the pups are great IMO.
If you got the money go for it.

But keep in mind, a great amp should be top priority. Even a Peavey 6505+ combo (which is about $599 new) would be great.

Just my $0.02.
Jackson DK-2 [2004 MIJ] (EMG 81/SA)
Jackson RR-3 [2007 MIJ] (EMG 81/60)
Ibanez RG370DX [2009] (EMG 81/60)
Epiphone Les Paul Custom [2004] (EMG 81/85)
Ltd/Esp M-17 7-String [2013] (EMG 81-7 set)
Bugera 333XL 120watt Tube Head, Crate BV412 Cab
#18
If your budget is $1,000, how about getting these.

Peavey 6505+ combo for $479.99:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Peavey-6505-112-60W-1x12-Tube-Combo-Guitar-Amp-Black-/190652335309?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2c63c3c4cd

ESP/LTD EC-401 w/EMG 81/60 pickups for about $500:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/ESP-LTD-EC-401-STBC-Electric-Guitar-B-/160759001196?pt=Guitar&hash=item256dfbb06c

I'd get these 2 if I were you, but again, just my opinion.
Jackson DK-2 [2004 MIJ] (EMG 81/SA)
Jackson RR-3 [2007 MIJ] (EMG 81/60)
Ibanez RG370DX [2009] (EMG 81/60)
Epiphone Les Paul Custom [2004] (EMG 81/85)
Ltd/Esp M-17 7-String [2013] (EMG 81-7 set)
Bugera 333XL 120watt Tube Head, Crate BV412 Cab
#19
Quote by Chaz-6(sic)6
If your budget is $1,000, how about getting these.

Peavey 6505+ combo for $479.99:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Peavey-6505-112-60W-1x12-Tube-Combo-Guitar-Amp-Black-/190652335309?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2c63c3c4cd
I'd get these 2 if I were you, but again, just my opinion.


Sorry, Chaz. I've played a 6505 112. The speakers in it are garbage. There are better amps out there.
Quote by TheSennaj
And well yes, I'll enjoy the carpal tunnel and tendonitis, because trying to get one is clearly smarter than any word you have spoken thus far.
#20
Quote by T00DEEPBLUE
Sorry, Chaz. I've played a 6505 112. The speakers in it are garbage. There are better amps out there.

Really? I owned one for over a year and loved it.
I guess it's just personal preference.
Jackson DK-2 [2004 MIJ] (EMG 81/SA)
Jackson RR-3 [2007 MIJ] (EMG 81/60)
Ibanez RG370DX [2009] (EMG 81/60)
Epiphone Les Paul Custom [2004] (EMG 81/85)
Ltd/Esp M-17 7-String [2013] (EMG 81-7 set)
Bugera 333XL 120watt Tube Head, Crate BV412 Cab
#21
Quote by Chaz-6(sic)6
Really? I owned one for over a year and loved it.
I guess it's just personal preference.



Have you swapped the speaker? The 6505 definitely sounds better with a Vintage 30 instead of the stock speaker. Try it and you'll see. It's like taking a blanket off the amp.
OBEY THE MIGHTY SHITKICKER
#22
Quote by JustRooster
Have you swapped the speaker? The 6505 definitely sounds better with a Vintage 30 instead of the stock speaker. Try it and you'll see. It's like taking a blanket off the amp.

Unfortunately, I had to sell it a few weeks ago cause I'm about to buy a car.

But I loved the sound of it. Sure it could have been a little better, but I paid only $400 for it used so I couldn't really complain. (funny to say I sold it for $450 )

I do plan on buying another one again in the future, so I'll definitely remember about switching the stock speaker to a vintage 30.

Thanks bud.
Jackson DK-2 [2004 MIJ] (EMG 81/SA)
Jackson RR-3 [2007 MIJ] (EMG 81/60)
Ibanez RG370DX [2009] (EMG 81/60)
Epiphone Les Paul Custom [2004] (EMG 81/85)
Ltd/Esp M-17 7-String [2013] (EMG 81-7 set)
Bugera 333XL 120watt Tube Head, Crate BV412 Cab
#24
Quote by Myaccount876
OK, listen carefully. GET A NEW AMP. I know you need a new guitar, but go to Sam Ash/Guitar Center in Hollywood, trade in your Line 6, get a guitar for about $500 (check used) and a tube amp for $700. Do this and thank me later.

I can see your logic here. The thing is.. I'm a college student and I live in dorms so I'm a bit hesitant to buy a $700 amp for a dorm. Also I know if I bought a $500 guitar it would only be a matter of time before I wanted a higher end one. Not because of its value as much as its size. But just incase I do follow this advice.. what amp would you recommend?
#26
Quote by Jasonconfused
I can see your logic here. The thing is.. I'm a college student and I live in dorms so I'm a bit hesitant to buy a $700 amp for a dorm. Also I know if I bought a $500 guitar it would only be a matter of time before I wanted a higher end one. Not because of its value as much as its size. But just incase I do follow this advice.. what amp would you recommend?


They have plenty of great small amps for $700. You could give or take money to a new guitar or amp but try to keep it balanced and lean more on the amp. I'm assuming you like thrash metal or something similar, so...

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Blackstar-HT-Series-HT-5R-Tube-Guitar-Combo-Amp-H75307-i1966775.gc

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Jackson-SLXQ-Soloist-X-Series-Electric-Guitar-107470445-i2038263.gc

OR if you could go a little more by selling your current amp:

http://www.guitarcenter.com/Bogner-Alchemist-Series-112-40W-1x12-Tube-Guitar-Combo-Amp-104904131-i1423686.gc

http://www.guitarcenter.com/ESP-LTD-MH-103-Quilted-Maple-Electric-Guitar-514872-i1372185.gc (You can change the pickups later)
Last edited by Myaccount876 at Mar 16, 2012,
#27
Quote by Jasonconfused
I can see your logic here. The thing is.. I'm a college student and I live in dorms so I'm a bit hesitant to buy a $700 amp for a dorm. Also I know if I bought a $500 guitar it would only be a matter of time before I wanted a higher end one. Not because of its value as much as its size. But just incase I do follow this advice.. what amp would you recommend?


Huh? You do know that guitar size isn't determined by price, right?
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#28
Quote by Arby911
Huh? You do know that guitar size isn't determined by price, right?

You mean amp? And yea I realized that what I said didn't make sense afterward. I don't know I just don't want to compromise on getting a guitar that I'll really be happy with even if it means waiting a bit to upgrade my amp.
#29
How about a Marshall dsl combo or tsl combo though I recommended the dsl over the tsl
#30
Quote by jose1216
How about a Marshall dsl combo or tsl combo though I recommended the dsl over the tsl

I don't know anything about it and all I can find online is it on sale used with no details available.
#31
It should be the same as it's bigger brothers the dsl 100 and dsl 50 except 40 watts and a combo look on Marshallamps.com
#32
What is your total budget? Where are you located? What kind of tones are you trying to get specifically (what bands do you want to sound like)?

You should probably make a new thread too. This one's gonna keep getting spammed up.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#33
people coming on these threads thrashing active pickups need to just go away. because obviously you wouldnt be even asking about them if you didnt play metal. ok we get it. active pickups might not be good for your eric clapton. but if you are into anything even kind of heavy you will love active pickups. i doubt you are looking for an amazing clean tone if you are asking about them. and then in that case an emg 60 isnt bad at all. thats what metallica uses for their nice clean tones sometimes. unless james pull out one of the teles.
Squier Vintage Modified 1970s Stratocaster.
Squier Classic Vibe 1970s Precision Bass
Guitar Rig 5
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Last edited by romeozdistress at Mar 16, 2012,
#34
Quote by Offworld92
What is your total budget? Where are you located? What kind of tones are you trying to get specifically (what bands do you want to sound like)?

You should probably make a new thread too. This one's gonna keep getting spammed up.

Yea I think I need to filter this to get specifically what I'm asking for. My budget is $1000 (originally meant for a new guitar only but everyone is advising against it) and I'm in Los Angeles. Tone.. hmm Exodus/early Metallica kinda thing. Even then I know they sound pretty different.
#35
^ I'd take an EMG SA or SAX over most passive single coils.

I realize most people on this site don't really know anything about EMG pickups other than the plain 81, and so they think all EMG's are like the 81.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#36
Quote by Offworld92
^ I'd take an EMG SA or SAX over most passive single coils.

I realize most people on this site don't really know anything about EMG pickups other than the plain 81, and so they think all EMG's are like the 81.


i love the 81. but i think the 60 compliments it perfectly. hell my brother in law, a mainly blues player loved the emg 81 when he tried it.
Squier Vintage Modified 1970s Stratocaster.
Squier Classic Vibe 1970s Precision Bass
Guitar Rig 5
Presonus Audiobox
Behringer Truth B2030A
#37
Quote by Jasonconfused
Yea I think I need to filter this to get specifically what I'm asking for. My budget is $1000 (originally meant for a new guitar only but everyone is advising against it) and I'm in Los Angeles. Tone.. hmm Exodus/early Metallica kinda thing. Even then I know they sound pretty different.


Trust me, a lot of money on a guitar =/= you will like it more than a cheaper guitar. Try both passive and active, try new amps, try different guitars at different prices. Never limit yourself on gear when you aren't 100% sure you know what you like and don't like. Go to the Guitar Center AND Sam Ash in HOLLYWOOD. (I highly recommend the GC in Hollywood) Try A BUNCH of stuff. Go there and you will learn a lot about what exactly you want.
#38
Quote by romeozdistress
i love the 81. but i think the 60 compliments it perfectly. hell my brother in law, a mainly blues player loved the emg 81 when he tried it.


Let me rephrase - most people only hear the 81 on brootz metal stuff, so they think that's all EMG's can do. I'm certainly not disagreeing with you, though I personally prefer the 85 over the 60 - the 60 is too warm for my tastes. It can out out a ridiculously sweet clean tone with the right EQ though.
Spin 'round carousel when your horse isn't screwed in.

My band:
Fractured Instinct
(For fans of Death/Groove/Prog Metal)

Ibanez RGA42E
Ibanez S420
LTD H-301
Ibanez RG520
Peavey Predator USA
Douglas Grendel 725
Line 6 Pod HD500X
#39
Quote by Offworld92
Let me rephrase - most people only hear the 81 on brootz metal stuff, so they think that's all EMG's can do. I'm certainly not disagreeing with you, though I personally prefer the 85 over the 60 - the 60 is too warm for my tastes. It can out out a ridiculously sweet clean tone with the right EQ though.


i havent tried the 85. but on my next guitar, which wont be for a very long time... id like to look into the 85/81 combo.

but yeah dude just go try them out. im sure you will fall in love. they sound awesome and itll make you a better guitar player..helps get rid of the sloppy fret work and stuff like that. you hear everything. i dont think id ever want a humbucking guitar without them.
Squier Vintage Modified 1970s Stratocaster.
Squier Classic Vibe 1970s Precision Bass
Guitar Rig 5
Presonus Audiobox
Behringer Truth B2030A
#40
Quote by Myaccount876
Trust me, a lot of money on a guitar =/= you will like it more than a cheaper guitar. Try both passive and active, try new amps, try different guitars at different prices. Never limit yourself on gear when you aren't 100% sure you know what you like and don't like. Go to the Guitar Center AND Sam Ash in HOLLYWOOD. (I highly recommend the GC in Hollywood) Try A BUNCH of stuff. Go there and you will learn a lot about what exactly you want.

Haha yes I've been to both of those stores before so I will definitely be going to them again next week when I start trying things out.
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