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This topic has already been debated to death, here and in other guitar forums! EMG's are great pickups for clean and distortion!! Listen to David Gilmour, Steve Lukather and Reb Beach amongst many others if you have any questions... :rolleyes:
 

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This topic has already been debated to death, here and in other guitar forums! EMG's are great pickups for clean and distortion!! Listen to David Gilmour, Steve Lukather and Reb Beach amongst many others if you have any questions... :rolleyes:
Excellent point.

I hope EMG would have space for Ibanez if they take the ESP path and offer several EMG'd models for every shape. It would be great to get a whole bunch of different RGs, Ss, X series, Vais, and JS models with an EMG option. I think Vai and Satch could also use the extra endorsement, too from someone like an EMG. Does every major guitarist only have one guitar maker and one amp?

I think too many players put EMGs as pickups used with the hardest forms of metal and while they can get regular tones, nothing beats and EMG for down tuning and death metal and black metal.

7 and 8 string guitars totally excel with EMGs which can retain single note clarity on those lower 7th and 8th strings.

It all depends on where the most popular forms of guitar music goes. I think with Animals as Leaders and others in djent music, more players are going to go with EMG and Tosin Abasi has some great crunch stuff as well as totally clean stuff on the EMG TV site that rocks.
 

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Discussion Starter #103
Yesterday I installed EMG 81 in my RG870qmz Premium and these are my thoughts. At first I wasn't so thrilled. Don't get me wrong, it sounded much better than the crappy stock pups but still too bright, over-saturated and without any crunch. I needed to tweak my amp, lower the highs from 6 to 4, and roll back the gain knob from 8 to 6. Then it finally gained some body and I pretty much liked it. You simply need to know your equipment and set it up right for EMGs of which I've been a fan for years. I had it installed in my mahogany Les Paul and it handled high gain stuff much better than my mid-rangy basswood RG. This is a proof that EMG doesn't sound the same in every single guitar, if you think so, you sir, are a noob. I still have my doubts abut putting in Crunch Lab but let's wait and see. I'm not sure it would have enough bite I need for death/thrash I mostly play.
 

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Yesterday I installed EMG 81 in my RG870qmz Premium and these are my thoughts. At first I wasn't so thrilled. Don't get me wrong, it sounded much better than the crappy stock pups but still too bright, over-saturated and without any crunch. I needed to tweak my amp, lower the highs from 6 to 4, and roll back the gain knob from 8 to 6. Then it finally gained some body and I pretty much liked it. You simply need to know your equipment and set it up right for EMGs of which I've been a fan for years. I had it installed in my mahogany Les Paul and it handled high gain stuff much better than my mid-rangy basswood RG. This is a proof that EMG doesn't sound the same in every single guitar, if you think so, you sir, are a noob. I still have my doubts abut putting in Crunch Lab but let's wait and see. I'm not sure it would have enough bite I need for death/thrash I mostly play.
I recently put a Crunchlab 7 and Liquifire 7 in my RG1527. I really like the crunchlab, but I'd say it had less crunch than an Evo. The one I can't seem to get a great sound out of is the liquifire. I've played with it at every height and where it is now and further from the strings sounds weak and and closer to them sounds "tinny", but it's still better than the stock pickup I replaced.
 

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Yesterday I installed EMG 81 in my RG870qmz Premium and these are my thoughts. At first I wasn't so thrilled. Don't get me wrong, it sounded much better than the crappy stock pups but still too bright, over-saturated and without any crunch. I needed to tweak my amp, lower the highs from 6 to 4, and roll back the gain knob from 8 to 6. Then it finally gained some body and I pretty much liked it. You simply need to know your equipment and set it up right for EMGs of which I've been a fan for years. I had it installed in my mahogany Les Paul and it handled high gain stuff much better than my mid-rangy basswood RG. This is a proof that EMG doesn't sound the same in every single guitar, if you think so, you sir, are a noob. I still have my doubts abut putting in Crunch Lab but let's wait and see. I'm not sure it would have enough bite I need for death/thrash I mostly play.
They are such friendly pickups when you want to tweak a signal with the amp or pedals. They retain their clarity so well.

But what I have found with any solidbody is that they do tend to sound about the same, as compared with let's say a passive PAF within different solidbodies. I got so much more movement with tone from fat to thinner with going from mahogany to basswood or alder with the passives. However, that same basic powerful tone sounds the same with EMG 81s whether it's in a Les Paul Custom or a Stratocaster with floyd. It takes a note and sustains it so well that the whole issue of not sustaining enough doesn't apply to the 81.

I don't know if that means I like the passives or EMG better but certainly the sound from the 81 is so much more predictable and I won't find myself wondering how to get a sound when I know what I can expect from the get go.

That being said, I don't know what the effect of my semi-hollowbody Artcore AS73 would have on a pair of EMGs. My guess is that there would in that case be somewhat less sustain but if my experiences with 81s over the years proves correct, it would basically sound the same as the strats and Les Pauls outfitted with same. I would concede that 81s in a full hollowbody would not sustain the same but many higher end jazz guitars have active humbuckers probably for the fact that they have superb note clarity.
 

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I just think of active vs. passive as a matter of right tool for the job.

Just got my S920BK which is my first Ibanez equipped with EMG's and I love it. Yea it has a different sound than my Prestige with QM1 and QM2's(which are the best stock pickups I've ever heard in an Ibanez), not as organic, and surely not as versatile for clean sounds, but I knew that before I purchased it. It does however have an extremely clear, articulate tone and through my H&K Tube 100, it shreds, just what I was looking for.
And now I have my 3rd Ibanez and can cover all the different tunings I use. Its great for the extreme metal style that I love, and when I want a different sound I always have my other 2 to choose from.
I completely agree with this, I also just got an S920BK and have an S5470 with Passives for the exact same reasons.
 

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For me the only thing that I don't like about EMG's is that they require a 9v battery... I'm always forgetting to unplug the damn cable and running the batteries down. But that's my fault for being oblivious.... :D

I have an 81/89 combo in my MIJ RG421 for drop tuning METAL and they rock for that. The 89 is a split coil that can actually get close to some Fendery single coil tones also...
 

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The 89 is usually a neck pickup; it's basically an 85 that can be split...
You want a humbucker that can split at the bridge "most of the time" which is why I said "generally" :roll: you can use it however you want I guess. Besides, this is also how EMG recommends the pick up to be used namely, 89 bridge, 1 SA pup mid, 1 SA pup neck.
 

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You want a humbucker that can split at the bridge "most of the time" which is why I said "generally" :roll: you can use it however you want I guess. Besides, this is also how EMG recommends the pick up to be used namely, 89 bridge, 1 SA pup mid, 1 SA pup neck.
Nuht Uhhhh! :roll:... From EMG site: " Used equally in bridge and neck positions, whether you are playing hard rock or smooth jazz, you can get it all with this beautifully balanced and versatile pickup." :lol:

All their tone samples are of the 89 in the neck :roll:
 

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Rightfully so, he was the only one standing out. A notch up from the "advanced harmonic minor shredding". Still, it's only notes, but with some quartal harmony. Good to know he won. :)
 

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I can't speak for how the company is marketing the the functionality of the EMG 89 pup nowadays, all I know is the classic 89 set up is what I stated in my earlier post, granted my knowledge in the subject is obviously outdated and since the company changed hands it is no surprise they're doing things differently.
 

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i have tried a lot of high output dimarzio pups but the paf pros on the pgm100 is what i have liked it sounds very crunchy and ballsy.. my guitar now that i had for a year has 707's with maple board and i love it.. i can do a lot of style from eric johnson to periphery..
and yes i tweak on my amp's eq a lot..
 

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I have a set of EMG 81/85 in my LesPaul and they aren't too bad but the pickups in my prestige are a little hotter and sweeter to my ears.
 

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Never played an EMG that impressed me. They always sounded flat and sterile and I hate the idea of all those wasted batteries.
 
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