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EMG pups for blues and jazz?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by ADAP7IVE, Jan 26, 2019.

  1. darren7

    darren7 Tele-Holic

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    Maybe try the 57/66 set it the new RetroActive Fat 55 set.
     
  2. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Yikes!
    I made an assumption, then stated it as fact.
    Mea culpa!
    Sorry!
    You are correct, sir.
    He uses Bartolini pickups.
     
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  3. maxvintage

    maxvintage Poster Extraordinaire

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    So I feel like i have to point out that "blues" is a musical genre, not a pickup. You can play blues on a piano, or a harmonica, or a melodica, or a sax, or a trumpet, or a flute, or an accordion, or a banjo or a trombone or a mandolin or a bass or really any instrument. I you play blues well, nobody will notice what pickups you use
     
  4. TheGoodTexan

    TheGoodTexan Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I'm a blues/funk/rock player. I have been using various EMG pickups for years. In my main #1 Strat, I put an EMG Tele neck pickup in the neck and middle positions, and a SA in the bridge position.

    I have another Strat with an EMG 81 in the bridge and a TA (Tele neck) in the neck spot.

    As someone else has said... there are terrific EMG pickups for playing blues and jazz, but the 81 ain't it. It's a heavy rock and metal pickup. It does not have a great clean sound. The clean sound is thin and bright in a Strat.

    The 60 in the neck spot is fine for blues/jazz. The 60A would be a good choice for the bridge, or even a 89. I have dual 89s in my Les Paul, with push/pull pots. The clean sounds are freaky amazing.
     
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  5. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    If I'm not mistaken, EMG pickups were popular with jazz players before James Hetfield discovered them. What I can tell you is that if your amp has a lot of headroom, they'll sound great. But a lower wattage might be slammed to hard by their output and you might not get a pristine clean sound.
     
  6. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    The EMG's batteries I have in one of my DIY basses lasted 9 years. I made this: room for 2 9v batteries. 2 of them. And on top of that, bought the expensive Lithium ones that are normally used in smoke detectors. However, I connected them so they would not produce 18v but "longevity" 9 volts. I e running still at 9 volts. This is called pararell wiring. If you have room for 2 batteries, but uses only one, you can use the other one as a spare, with a fresh new battery. Make sure it is of lithium since they have longer shelf life.

    Important to know 1:
    the batteries must be the fresh ones, and of the same brand/model. One HUGE benefit, and worth the price of lithium batteries: they won't ever leak. Thus, you can have them for a long time.

    Important to know 2
    : Only EMG's benefits from this. Even Fishman Fluence pickups drains milliAmpere. EMG drains microAmpere. This is crucial. EMG's also works flawlessly down to 4 volts before they start to go south in terms of sound which is a crackling distortion. Do not use lithium on all other onboard active guitars or basses, because if it draws milliAmpere like pedal boxes they will EAT lithium batteries for breakfast and drain very quickly.

    Important to know 3
    : plugging and unplugging your cables is a good hygiene regardless of passive or active. It will "rug" the material, steel, each time so it doesn't start to grow verdigris and make scratches later on. It's the same thing I do with volume pots. I always turn them down while not playing, or leaving the guitar behind, keeps the pots from scratching eventually. Same sort of thing. I e it's important to unplug on passive pickups too.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2019
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  7. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    Mind you what I said about people complaining about EMGs induces some compression to the signal. And they don't think passives do, vintage or not. This is the graph that tells us nothing about compression as such, but that you can actually have single coil vintage pickups that are wired hotter than a humbucker active pickup and thus must be very prone to dynamic limiting in form of compression. As well as less treble content. If so.

    I agree, that the graph is a bit misleading as it compares an active humbucker to a passive single coil. Remember that all or most of the vintage pickups wasn't made to certain specs. They could vary wildly as one can see with manufacturers today, are trying to nail one specific item pickup of a one only stratocaster from - say - 1962 and so on. They varied quite wildly up and down back in those days.

    That's what I meant, that those graphs doesn't tell you about the limiting/compression that occurs at the start/beginning of the pick attack.

    There can very well be another graph with another active humbucker pickup, which curves are on the top, and the rest of the vintage passive humbucker pickups are much lower.
     
  8. luckett

    luckett Banned

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    It doesn't matter what kind of explanation you come up with for how the work, the graph is showing decibels of output. The output of "modern active pickups" is simply not lower that "vintage" or "hot" strat pickups. That graph is obviously wrong. It's just silly trying to argue that it's correct.
     
  9. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    But then it's up to you isn't it? Show us the correct graph then?
     
  10. luckett

    luckett Banned

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    No, it's not up to me. I'm not the one trying to support dubious data as being correct. Maybe you should show us where you got the graph so we can see the methodology for how this data was produced. Surely you know how it was produced if you're trying to explain how it's correct. If you can't show us how the data was produced, we can only assume that you don't really know why the graph shows such a low output level for the active pickup.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2019
  11. SacDAve

    SacDAve Poster Extraordinaire

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    I have two guitars with EMG’s I think on has David Gilmour and one has Vintage ( think that’s what they were called) both sets are active I really like them both. I think it's more about Amps and Amp settings with any pickups, Myself I like a wide variety of pickups. If the guitar is really nice plays well, I would go for it, if you never connect with the pickups you can change them out. It sounds like you really want the guitar.
     
  12. TheGoodTexan

    TheGoodTexan Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I agree with this. AND... the 81 is probably the EMG pickup in the most demand, meaning that you could probably flip it real quick. For the past 10 years or so, EMG has used quick connectors on the back of the pickup, meaning that it would be very easy to try a different EMG pickup if you replace the 81.
     
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  13. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    [​IMG]

    Ok again. You should only compare in this particular case, the HUMBUCKER comparisons. Since there is not Modern Active Single Coil displayed at all, this graph is a bit unclear. I said this too, that this graph just shows one tiny part of it. You should not however, compare any (passive or active) single coild to humbucker in any way regarding output and frequency response. As this graph shows if we remove the one and only Active Humbucker displayed here, you are left with passive pickups only. One should really remove the topmost Hot Strat, Vintage Strat ones, and just compare the lower three. I can't find anything that says "Modern Active Single Coil". Not necessarily all passive pickups have lower output than the average active. You should think of the following: The amount of variations there exist out there in passive pickups (does Seymour Duncan have had 5-600 different models throughout the years, both discontinued, and still making?) compared to the very few that exists by one or two active pickup makers, EMG, Seymour may be the only ones, for 3rd party pickups. All of this discussion is generalized and doesn't hold true for all actives and passives, single coils or humbuckers. It's just an example. Think of it as an extreme example of passives compared to "average" actives, since there are not that much to choose from in actives.

    And here's my link, it's nothing I got out of the blue, or some measurements I came up with on a whim. Feel free to mail the people at this link then, and tell them to go pound sand instead.

    https://ledgernote.com/columns/guitar-guru/guitar-tone/

    - - - - - - - - - -

    Now, that one isn't me and I am not involved. Now, I have presented the link where I got my information from, and now the ball is yours and it's up to you to provide links, pdf's, measurements that tells us the opposite. Please go ahead. I've provided my source now.

    Your turn
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2019
  14. metale

    metale Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    It still is an incorrect graph, IMO. Asking to ignore part of it won't make it right.
     
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  15. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    I am still waiting for the more correct graph then.
     
  16. metale

    metale Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    Me not having a correct graph does not make your's right.

    Really, it is just common sense. The single coils' lines should not be louder.

    Plus, what pickups does that refer to? Because a SD Invader and a SD JB won't have the same line, not even close, and they are both 'modern humbuckers".
     
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  17. MatsEriksson

    MatsEriksson Tele-Afflicted

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    Isn't it the same with jazz?

    Which kind of jazz?
    If it's early 1900-1920 no electric guitars existed anyway. You could stll play jazz on those archtops.
    If it's pre 1945 it's big band jazz. Swing. Django, Gypsy style.
    After 1945 it's bebop.
    50's and on, Cool, Chamber jazz or modern jazz.
    Fusion jazz of the 70s? Distortion with McLaughlin et al?
    Acid Jazz ? requires yet another ballpark.

    IMHO, I think the only thing that I would think of, is that you should have a neck pickup. You can play jazz on bridge pickups only, but that position at the neck are far more important than any passive or active pickup.
     
  18. luckett

    luckett Banned

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    It's not unclear at at all. It's very clear that the graph is just plain wrong.

    Is this some kind of a joke? That article is explaining what "guitar tone" is and why you should use a guitar pick. You're really trying to use that as a technical source? I'm now questioning your judgement in addition to your technical knowledge.
     
  19. maxvintage

    maxvintage Poster Extraordinaire

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    it's true with any kind of music. A good melody doesn't require a specific instrument. Expressive playing exists on all instruments. You only need a specific pickup if your goal is imitating someone else. Imitating someone else is necessary to learning but not sufficient
     
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  20. schmee

    schmee Doctor of Teleocity

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    I'd had a few EMG's, None would I ever think of for Blues or Rock. At least at normal volumes and situations. But hey, the whole setup is what matters and I'm sure some can make it work. They lack any character for me really.
     
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