81 review by EMG

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  • Sound: 10
  • Overall Impression: 10
  • Reliability & Durability: 10
  • Reviewer's score: 10 Gem
  • Users' score: 8.5 (74 votes)
EMG: 81
0

Price paid: $ 100

Purchased from: Local store

Sound — 10
This is one of the most famous pickups around, and coming from EMG, you couldn't expect anything better. Kinda tricky to wire it though, but once you have wired two or three, it's like the alphabet. The main use for this pickup is for lead tones, solos and lead guitarrists. It has a rich warm tone, a crunchy high and a FAT low bottom end. I wired mine for the bridge, but it will work fine on either position. I seriously recommend pairing this one with the EMG 60 or 89.

Overall Impression — 10
The sound and endurance you get from this pickup is just amazing, but the high cost and wiring dufficulties can really make you crazy. I installed this in an RG321EX, on the bridge position, I replaced the original pickup with a set of 58 on the bridge and the 60 in the neck. So I got a very versatile combo.

Reliability & Durability — 10
The last EMG I had was an EMG 58 in the bridge, that last one lasted me about 5 years. Then got the 81 2 years ago, what can I say, it still sounds like new. I'll definately get another one if this one breaks or just blows out. You just have to be carefull to not let t hit anything as this is very fragile.

8 comments sorted by best / new / date

    EMG_DRAKE
    I have an 81 in the bridge position. Will another 81 in the neck give me a significant boost in playing metal? I do a lot of power chords. I do a mix of songs so would I be better off getting a very clean sounding pickup to help with reverb and bluesy sounds? If so what would be good to pair my 81 with? If another 81 would make a huge difference with metal, than I would go for that. Any ideas?
    ew94
    EMG_DRAKE wrote: I have an 81 in the bridge position. Will another 81 in the neck give me a significant boost in playing metal? I do a lot of power chords. I do a mix of songs so would I be better off getting a very clean sounding pickup to help with reverb and bluesy sounds? If so what would be good to pair my 81 with? If another 81 would make a huge difference with metal, than I would go for that. Any ideas?
    Pair it with the EMG 60 and you got it.
    bossboy
    yea go with the 81+60 i find with my 81+85 cant get good cleans n the cruch on the 85 isnt even that great
    metalrox20
    Get another 81 in the neck, that will give the best chunky tone for rythm and the best tone for leads.
    EMG_DRAKE wrote: I have an 81 in the bridge position. Will another 81 in the neck give me a significant boost in playing metal? I do a lot of power chords. I do a mix of songs so would I be better off getting a very clean sounding pickup to help with reverb and bluesy sounds? If so what would be good to pair my 81 with? If another 81 would make a huge difference with metal, than I would go for that. Any ideas?