Well i just bought a ltd v-500 and it comes with emg-81s on the neck and bridge. Now ive used emg-81s before and i like the way it sound on the bridge but i really dislike the sound on the neck. It is just way to harsh, i was thinking of totally changing from the emgs, to SD Distortion at the bridge and to a SD Jazz at the bridge. However i dont have the money, id have to sell or see if i can trade the emgs to get them. This i beleive would be ideal because i wanted a hot bridge pup and a smooth lead neck pickup. However if i just change the neck 81 to another active what would be the best to emulate that smooth jazzy tone. Also comments/suggestions on my SD selection are welcome.
Probaly an 89 in the neck would be good dont have much experience with passives though 18v mod wil give you enough headroom for jazz i think
Vintage V-100, EMG 81&60
Chapman ML-1

Jet City JCA20H
I'd stick with the 81 in the bridge and install and EMG-H or 89 in the neck.

Just sell the other 81 and get a used replacement on ebay.

If your guitar has the quick connectors you can do it yourself as long as the replacement you get has them too.

The cool thing about the 89 is it's 2 pickups in one, but you'd have to add a switch to take advantage of this option.
Well, you have a few options actually.

A mini-toggle is the easiest to add, or you could change a tone or volume pot to the push-pull kind that would switch the pickup from single to double coil.

I'd have a tech add these of course.
To add the mini-toggle would be cheaper, probably around $20-35 at the most.