#1
Sup peoples...
Right so I've got a fair few guitars already. Too many to mention. But I've never had a guitar with EMG pickups, or even active pickups for that matter. Normally I like med output pickups but I want to have a well rounded collection and I play alot of high output shred stuff as well as do the jazz/fusion thing.

Anyhoo, I'm looking for a basswood body guitar (preferably), maybe alder, that would be a good match with the classic 85/81combo. Humbucker humbucker, strat like shape, hard-tail (preferably)...
Budget... IDK $4-500 maybe.

I rather like this Kramer Striker, yet I don't like that single in there.
http://www.musiciansfriend.com/guitars/kramer-striker-custom-fr-424cm-electric-guitar/515347000039000

Any ideas?

-Tony
Last edited by X-plorer88 at Mar 19, 2012,
#2
So do you want a guitar with EMGs already? Or just one you can put EMGs in? A lot of ESP LTDs have EMGs once you get towards the 1000 range (e.g. M1000, MH1000) or even just the 300 series based on a quick look at their website.

EMGs, in particular the 81, have a very flat tonal range which can be both good and bad, depending on how you see it. But basically if you put them in basswood or alder they will remain very flat, and then you can shape them how you want. I personally don't like this - I find they sound better in something like mahogany which has a more meaty tone (more mids, and lows). Not trying to sway you either way here, just saying it's something to think about.

I think with LTDs the Ms usually have trems, so maybe look at the MH or H for hard tail bridges. Otherwise Ibanez RGs are usually made out of basswood, so you could grab a cheap one of them and put EMGS in it (an RG321 perhaps). I think Schecter's often have EMGs too, from what I remember.
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#3
Oh I should have mentioned that I intend to put them in myself. But of course if it already has them in then super!

Yeah I know they're pretty level in their frequency response, but since I'm not into the really heavy droptuned palm mute thing that's kinda why I want to shy away from warmer mahogany.

I looked at alot of ESPs and LTDs and I like them but over the last 5 years they've gotten really expensive, same with Gibsons. But I'm willing to buy used. I'll take a second look, thanks.
Last edited by X-plorer88 at Mar 19, 2012,
#4
Fair enough. You could also look at Jacksons? I used to own a DXMG which was a sweet Japanese made guitar - alder bodied too. Came stock with EMG Hzs which were crap but after a pickup swap it was an awesome axe.
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#5
i grabbed a ltd ex-400 for the emg 60/81 for $299. look used.
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#6
Huh, ^ good deal. I'll check it out.
BTW, I've been looking up how to wire EMGs and what's the deal with the stereo input jack? From what I can see I think it just connects the battery ground to the pickup/loop ground. That would mean you should always unplug your active guitar to stop current drain. Basically having a cable in there turns the guitar pickups "on". And also the bridge isn't supposed to be grounded? I might have just found a good deal on a 81/85 set but it doesn't include anything other than the pickups themselves.

-Tony
#7
yep, unplug when you're not playing. EMGs don't need the string ground since they have very low noise anyway. Some manufacturers add the wire to the bridge, even though EMG recommends against it. I don't think it makes a difference either way.
#8
i mena it had a couple dents and chips here and there. but hell the pickups are over $200 themselves. you can find ltd viper-400s for like $200.
Squier Vintage Modified 1970s Stratocaster.
Squier Classic Vibe 1970s Precision Bass
Guitar Rig 5
Presonus Audiobox
Behringer Truth B2030A
#9
Quote by Ibbod0
yep, unplug when you're not playing. EMGs don't need the string ground since they have very low noise anyway. Some manufacturers add the wire to the bridge, even though EMG recommends against it. I don't think it makes a difference either way.


Cool. Thats what I figured. Thanks.
#10
Don't worry about the body wood so much. The body wood matters a lot with set necks, but with bolt-ons and neck-throughs the neck wood matters more, and most of the time when you see active pickups they're in either bolt-on or neck-through guitars.

Also remember that cheap basswood is utter turd. If you're looking at MIC/MII guitars liek that Kramer and others around that price range, stay away from any that list basswood as the body wood. All the wood those sorts of guitars use is cheap and will sound more or less the same, but the cheap basswood in particular dents like nobody's business and tends to be heavier than the equivalent cheap alder or ash.

If I was looking at piecing together a guitar spec for shred and jazz with active pickups, I'd look at the 60A and 60 for the bridge and neck respectively, and I'd look for a guitar either with a bolt-on maple and rosewood neck with an alder body or an all-maple neck with a mahogany body. If you want a double-locking vibrato then I'd even be tempted to go for rosewood and mahogany. An 81 with an alder or basswood body, a bolt-on all-maple neck and a double locking vibrato isn't exactly jazz-friendly. That's more of an 80s big-haired metal Whitesnake-style riff machine. A warmer-toned guitar with the 60A and 60 would have a much warmer and clearer tone for the jazz end while still having more than enough cut and power for shred (if anything the two 60 models respond better for shred than the 81 and 85 do anyway).
Yes, I know everything. No, I can't play worth a damn.
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#11
The thing with basswood is it can be a hit or miss. They're are some types of the wood cut from certain regions or parts of the tree (who really knows) that will sound flat and dull, and other types that are more preferable who sound one step brighter than mahogany. I've played guitars with the cheaper cut bodies and although they didn't sound terrible, they didn't really have any tonal character either. I remember an interview where Steve Vai was talking about the same thing. Just because a body is cut from a certain species of wood doesn't mean they're all the same. Basswood in and of itself isn't a cheap wood (tone wise), tell that Suhr guitars. But Yeah I get what you mean. I've got over a dozen guitars all with different wood combos and I probably feel that body and neck wood affects tone more than most people on this forum. lol but that's me. I certainly don't want to spark that argument again.

I have looked at the 60s and I do like them as well. However, I don't intend to play jazz with EMGs.... definitely not. lol No I just want it as a shred/metal. Again I've never owned actives and don't know much about EMGs, so yeah I was just kinda going with the norm.
Thanks for the advice.

-Tony
Last edited by X-plorer88 at Mar 19, 2012,