I'm thinking about upgrading my pickups. Since Dimarzio D Activators are meant to replicate active pickups, I was wondering: if I put a D Activator in the neck and some other passive pickup in the bridge, would it sound any good?

How are we supposed to know? It depends so much on what amp you're running.

I wouldn't have a pickup anywhere near as hot as a D-activator in the neck. It's going to be unusably muddy.
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Quote by Axelfox
Matching pickups is all about volume/output differences. Experiment and see what you like. I don't think it would be unusable, but it certainly is a bit of an extreme choice output wise.
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Apparently once also known as PonyFan #834553.
The D-Activator really doesn't sound like an active pickup. It sounds like a passive pickup trying to replicate the "active sound" - that is, the really broad frequency response. It doesn't really do that job - it still sounds like a high output passive (albeit a good one). That said, the set does work quite nicely together, though the nick pickup is without a shadow of a doubt on the bright side of things.

Dave from Revocation runs a D-Activator/Air Norton combo in his Jackson Warriors.

TL;DR: Try it out, but make sure you put the DA neck in the neck if you want any semblance of volume match. Tonal considerations are their own thing.
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Last edited by oneblackened at Feb 6, 2016,