alder 7's?

Discussion in 'Sevenstring Guitars' started by Elysian, Jan 5, 2005.

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  1. Mind Riot

    Mind Riot Devoted seven stringer Contributor

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    Not to add fuel to the fire, but there is some merit in the 'EMG sameness' theory. I don't believe they sound identical in every guitar, but I do feel that the differences between guitars wood wise and such is less than with passives. I played EMG's for about five years and now I'm a passive guy.

    The reason I say this is that active pickups use very weak magnets which put out a signal that is then amplified by the preamp before it leaves the guitar. Passive pickups use stronger magnets which need no additional gain stage before reaching the amp.

    The case being that passive pickups have a stronger magnetic field and that the personality of the wood of the guitar comes through the strings (the particular damping and resonance characteristics of a certain wood) it stands to reason that passive pickups detect more of the personality of the strings, and thus the wood.

    Actives pick up less of the personality of the guitar but what they do pick up is then amplified before leaving the output jack. It's the difference between close micing a sound source and getting a strong signal OR micing the sound source further away and then running the signal through a mic pre to boost it.

    My point is that both sounds may be perfectly acceptable but the fact is that they ARE different. I'm not talking about whether or not EMG's are good pickups, that's subjective, but I do believe that they would tend to reduce the differences between guitars' personalities due to their inherent design. Not better or worse, but it IS different.
     
  2. Drew

    Drew Forum MVP

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    I'd say the argument that EMG's color your sound more than passives is partly due to that and partly due to the fact that in my (admittedly) limited experience, this is generally true of high-output pickups in general. I'm not sure if this is because the pickups themselves color the sound more as output increases, or if they just hit the amp harder and they add more of the "amplifier" sound to the mix.

    But, once again, I'll gladly sit down with a few different EMG guitars before I state this as fact, or even an educated opinion- it's a hunch that I ahven't gotten a chance to test out objectively yet.

    -D
     
  3. Elysian

    Elysian Banned

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    hm i don't know, i put my X2N in a alder bodied early 90's yamaha and it sounded absolutely horrid... put the same pickup in my Rhoads V and it totally changed tones, was very killer sounding... i don't know why those 2 alder bodied guitars sounded so different, but i don't really think the high output X2N colored the sound all that much honestly, but then again, it uses probly the strongest magnet in the whole pickup making industry lol
     
  4. Toshiro

    Toshiro .... Contributor

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    Considering EMGs have a "amp" built into the pickup, it compounds the effect.

    EMGs are very, very compressed. This compression is what makes the guitars sound similar with them. Wanna disagree with me, fine, but take into account that I worked as a tech installing these for a EMG dealer for 6 years. I've heard about 100+ guitars with EMGs. :nuts: Maybe not exactly the same, but close enough that it's not as varied as any passive pickup.
     
  5. aldog1330

    aldog1330 I like beer

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    I will agree that they do color the sound to an extent, but I don't think you could slap a pair of EMG's into a POS plywood guitar and have it sound like a million bucks. The same pair of pickups that I had in one mahogany guitar sounded like shit compared to a different mahogany guitar, through the same amp/settings. The pickups still do amplify body resonance. But like Toshiro said, they do compress the sound as well. What it comes down to is tone is subjective - some people like them, some people hate them, and thats true for any pickup, whether they be active or passive.
     
  6. No Soul

    No Soul bringer of mosh

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    I will give you that EMGs do color your tone a lot more than most pickups out there, but thats true of all actives, not just EMGs, and frankly thats kind of the point.

    Id say more than the tone itself, its the dynamics of your sound (which is what the pre-amp does) which are effected the most, which is what I like about actives. As mentioned, there is compression, very precise attack, noise reduction. Id almost go so far as to say they are "unforgiving" in that they deliver clarity in your sound, but demand precision more than most other pickups.

    They arent for everybody, there is no doubt there, and they definitely are not very versatile (the popular ones anyway). If you like sparkling clean sounds, kiss em good bye if you plan to use 81s or 85s. But what they do what they are made for INCREDIBLY well.

    I really cant speak for them in a 7string, as Ive never tried em, but Im very curious. On the other hand Im pretty happy with my DiMarzios.
     
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