NPUD!! Blackwater Neodymium Modern (w/ review + test)

Dominoes282

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That was a '''fun''' last couple of days. It was pretty worth it in my opinion because along with testing out some new on the market pickups, I also joined the very small club of people who swapped out Carvin DC800 actives to passives, which was an interesting process to say the least. One thing to say is HUGE FREAKING shout out terran236 on the Carvin forums for this thread here. As promised I have revised his diagram to make it more understandable for people who need that kind of thing. Where it says shared that means you must have both wires in the post before soldering i.e. don't solder one wire then tack on another one they must be together.

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Okay so on to the review. Lets start with,

The Install:

I asked Blackwater before ordering to make sure the pickups would fit. They said if SD Blackouts would fit (which they would), these would fit. When I got them though they were a little bit bigger but thankfully the wings were made of some sort of composite so carefully working at it with sandpaper fixed that. I also had to readjust where the screw holes were which was again made a little easier due to the material. Just carefully worked with a drill and finally got everything lined up. The wiring was to be expected. The only thing I noticed was the pickups wires being thinner than I've seen on other pickups. Maybe that's just me though.

The Look:

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Judge for yourself but I think it looks freakin awesome, and screw pickup covers because I like that it looks modded. The black wings blend in with the shadow of the cavity unlike BKP's metal wings, the pole pieces are very shiny and the ribbon around the winding is very cool even though there's a little bit of freying due to picking but that shouldn't be a real big problem.

The Sound:

Remember I'm switching from Carvin actives to passives. Let me go through the problems with the old pickups. The output was crazy. Notice on Carvin's website under DC Resistance it says 'N/A'. Pretty sure that's intentional. You can basically forget about clarity at this point. Dynamically there was nothing there and it can tonally be described as Lace Xbars. Now on to the Neodymiums. Output is much more manageable. When first trying it, it was a bit too low until I raised the bridge pickup slightly and it seemed to fix the problem. It's amazing to record with. The amount of work I have to do to make it sound good is much much less frustrating. Every EQ adjustment is satisfying because pretty much any change is going to work for you instead of against you. Dynamics are so much more defined but not too sharp. The tone I describe as sweet, especially when working with leads. You can even kinda get a Lundgen sound if you kick in the bridge pickup when doing some Meshuggah type leads which I was very pleased about. Not only are the dynamics defined but just every note is clear. You can literally strum openly down and can hear every note being played instead of just a mess of noise. It really is amazing. I absolutely have no complaints regarding tone.

Demo:

Here I play a few different genres that I think go well with these pickups. One I should've included was jazz which sounds absolutely fantastic but whaddya gonna do.

I haven't dialed in the perfect tone yet but this is pretty cool.

[SC]https://soundcloud.com/recordingmf/blackwater-testbild[/SC]
 

DancingCloseToU

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I really think it looks pretty damn good. Especially considering the active routing, the pickup actually appears to fit quite snug.

don't know though, the extra routing space just might bug me enough that I'd have to put some covers on it. Perhaps not, it's cuttin it real close.

Also I very much enjoyed that clip. Sounded good loud. :hbang:

HNPUD!
 

Dominoes282

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I really think it looks pretty damn good. Especially considering the active routing, the pickup actually appears to fit quite snug.

don't know though, the extra routing space just might bug me enough that I'd have to put some covers on it. Perhaps not, it's cuttin it real close.

Also I very much enjoyed that clip. Sounded good loud. :hbang:

HNPUD!

Thanks

In a normally lit room though it is actually hard to notice unless I really focus on it so it doesn't bother me a bit.

Definitely recommend these though.
 

Slunk Dragon

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Dude, congrats on the new pickups. They sound absolutely brutal!!!

Looking forward to hearing more clips of these, for sure.
 

JmCastor

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Dude so much win on this thread as i have Bareknuckle Emeralds going into my Carvin DC800 sometime this week! That diagram, combined with another because i am going to be using a 5 way super switch, is indispensable. I've Already made plans to get custom rings, but that doesn't look half bad! looks more like a workhorse guitar for sure. Dude it sounds great and i hope to have a similar experience with the active to passive conversion.
 

Dominoes282

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@JmCastor Thanks! I never heard of BKP Emeralds but I looked them up and they sound SO GOOD. That's awesome you're getting some. That was mainly my decision to not get rings because it's a strictly studio tuned guitar and the purpose of it is to make it sound as good as possible. If you have any questions regarding your install, just message me and I'll promptly answer them! Good luck!
 

Ajb667

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How are the cleans on these? Im interested in getting some but i cant find any clips or info on the neck cleans. Your clips sound great.
 

Dominoes282

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How are the cleans on these? Im interested in getting some but i cant find any clips or info on the neck cleans. Your clips sound great.

Si señor. I just happen to have this clip of an ending to a song I'm writing. Hope you like it!

[SC]https://soundcloud.com/recordingmf/clean-solo-blackwater-neodymium[/SC]
 

Ajb667

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Si señor. I just happen to have this clip of an ending to a song I'm writing. Hope you like it!

[SC]https://soundcloud.com/recordingmf/clean-solo-blackwater-neodymium[/SC]

That sounds really nice. Not too bright and its clear. I like it.
 

takotakumi

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First of all, thanks for posting this!
I just did this during the weekend, following the old post from
terran236 on the carvin forums.

I just have a question regarding the wiring, what difference would it make if I, like you said, tacked one wire over the other (you could say I added them, since I did the pickup-5way soldering first) instead of sharing them as you said?
The way I did is that every segment of those lines are cables on my wiring

Also, is there a problem is I used a regular wire instead of a bare one for the ground wiring?

thanks!
 


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