im looking to start customising my guitar currently i own an Ibanez RG 1750 Prestige model and im looking to put EMG pick ups into it however can anyone tell me what the difference between 81 humbuckers and 85 humbuckers



of course ill end up buying both but im taking it slowly as im abit short on cash
81s are commonly used as bridge pickups. If you listen to bands that use EMGs your probably listening to an 81. The 85 has a little less gain IMO, and itll get you a better clean sound. Its mainly used in the neck, but is also common in the bridge. What kind of music do you play? If you do anything with cleans, I would suggest a 60 in the neck, because they have better cleans than the 81 or 85.
What amp are you running into just out of curiosity?

It's really all up to taste. Normally, the 81 is used in the bridge and 85 in the neck. Others prefer swapping them, as they find the 81 to be too harsh, and prefer the "beefiness" of the 85.

The best way to know is to try.
The 81 is used mainly as a bridge pickup and the 85 as a neck. The in those links that the 81 is a lead pup, and the 85 as rhythm, but I use mine in the complete opposite. I get an awesome metal tone from my 81 in the bridge, and great lead with my 85 in the neck (imo!).

You said your taking it slow, I don't quite know what you mean, but get both installed at the same time, as it will cost more to get one installed, then the other later in the future.
I put the 85 in the bridge and 81 in the neck position, i just like it better. the 85 has a little more sparkle to me, while the 81 is very compressed. i'm gonna replace the 81 someday since it really isn't suited for the neck imo. thing is 60's and 60A's are rare in holland(second hand that is).
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Last edited by FretboardToAsh at Jan 20, 2007,
you're going to run into a couple issues installing those pups in the RG1570, just so you know. The pickup cavities are too small by just a hair on the corners, so you will either need to route the guitar cavity a little, or dremel some plastic off the lower 4 corners of the pups themselves. It may vary from guitar to guitar, but they wouldn't fit in my pickup cavities without rounding down the plastic on the bottom corners a little, just slightly. Also, behind the stock pups, there is foam on the back of the stock pups, and a raised hump of wood under it. You will need to route that raised piece of wood down a little if you want the pups to have enough clearance under the strings, and still be able to adjust. If I was going to install them again, I would probably go with the 81/89 combo instead of the 81/85. I have the both combos, and prefer the 81/89 after owning both. The 89 "is" an SA single coil when it's tapped, and is "supposed" to sound like an 85 when it's humbucking with both single coils. However, I prefer the 89 to the 85 even humbucking, I found the 85 to be a little too "boomy" in the neck for my taste.
"The fool doth think he is wise, but the wiseman knows himself to be a fool." - W.S.
amp clips
amp vids
so if these wouldnt fit what would y'all suggest ? im looking for a good metal heavy tone