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Active or Passive Pickups #2979292
03/08/19 04:15 PM
03/08/19 04:15 PM
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Virginia
DocPate Offline OP
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I've always loved the sound of the "passive" single coil Tele. P90 is my preference. But, beyond the introduction of the humbucker PAF, we now have "active" pickups.

The "buzz" question earlier today led me to do a little research on the active pickups, just thinking...

www.seymourduncan.com/blog/the-tone-garage/cage-match-active-vs-passive-pickups

What'cha think? Are you "Active" or "Passive" or Both?

Read more: http://guitarplayersforum.boards.net/thread/753/pickups-active-passive#ixzz5hbqMfaFb

Last edited by DocPate; 03/08/19 04:16 PM.
GP Island
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: DocPate] #2979301
03/08/19 05:21 PM
03/08/19 05:21 PM
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The Great Spirit's Handprint o...
Caevan O'Shite Offline
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Originally Posted By: DocPate
I've always loved the sound of the "passive" single coil Tele. P90 is my preference. But, beyond the introduction of the humbucker PAF, we now have "active" pickups.

The "buzz" question earlier today led me to do a little research on the active pickups, just thinking...

www.seymourduncan.com/blog/the-tone-garage/cage-match-active-vs-passive-pickups

What'cha think? Are you "Active" or "Passive" or Both?

Read more: http://guitarplayersforum.boards.net/thread/753/pickups-active-passive#ixzz5hbqMfaFb


The short answer is, both. I really enjoyed a "Hum-Sing-Sing" 85 SA SA set of EMG's for years. I have come to tend to prefer the attack I perceive from passive pickups, though, primarily in single-coil types.

Then there's the matter of some vintage-type pedals, particularly vintage-style fuzzes, not getting on well with active pickups. I believe that I missed out on some vintage pedals that I could have had good deals on years ago, as I tried them out with those EMG's and they didn't sound right... !


Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~
_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Caevan O'Shite] #2979307
03/08/19 05:42 PM
03/08/19 05:42 PM
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Larryz Offline
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I can go either way but I get along well with just a nice pair of passive humbuckers on my electrics. On my acoustics I prefer the Taylor electronics with bass and treble eq...the batteries go down a little faster (30 hours) than my regular acoustic which can last a year or more. On my Strats with active EMG's, they last about the same as my Taylors...I get good tone and volume out of all of the above. cool


Take care, Larryz
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Larryz] #2979331
03/08/19 07:38 PM
03/08/19 07:38 PM
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desertbluesman Offline
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Passive pups. I tried active EMG's once in one of my Les Paul Customs, I had them removed and replaced with Seymour Duncan Distortions within a few days of trying them out. Can't say as to why I did not like the actives, I forget why, I simply did not like them at all.


dbm
If it sounds good, it is good !!
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=143231&content=music
Harvey Cedars is my stage name on Soundclick
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: desertbluesman] #2979340
03/08/19 08:38 PM
03/08/19 08:38 PM
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DocPate Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: desertbluesman
Passive pups. I tried active EMG's once in one of my Les Paul Customs, I had them removed and replaced with Seymour Duncan Distortions within a few days of trying them out. Can't say as to why I did not like the actives, I forget why, I simply did not like them at all.


Sounds Forgettable

Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: desertbluesman] #2979341
03/08/19 08:40 PM
03/08/19 08:40 PM
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Dannyalcatraz Offline
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Passives only, in large part because I don’t want to deal with batteries in guitars.

I mean, I have a Fernandes Ravelle with a Sustainer, but that’s the only guitar I have with a battery compartment.

And I have come close to buying Godins that have the HDR system, which also requires batteries, but which uses normal passive pickups. (Best of both worlds.)

If I want something that sounds more like an EMG, I’ll use Lace Alumitones. I already have a Jon Kammerer with a trio of SC-sized Alumitones, and in fact, I have plans to get a JK mini semiholow with a mix of Deathbuckers and normal ?Alumitones as kind of an ultralight, versatile travel guitar.


Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap”.

My FLMS- Murphy's Music in Irving, Tx

http://murphysmusictx.com/
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: DocPate] #2979356
03/08/19 09:53 PM
03/08/19 09:53 PM
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desertbluesman Offline
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Originally Posted By: DocPate
Originally Posted By: desertbluesman
Passive pups. I tried active EMG's once in one of my Les Paul Customs, I had them removed and replaced with Seymour Duncan Distortions within a few days of trying them out. Can't say as to why I did not like the actives, I forget why, I simply did not like them at all.


Sounds Forgettable

Too funny Doc......
cheers


dbm
If it sounds good, it is good !!
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=143231&content=music
Harvey Cedars is my stage name on Soundclick
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Dannyalcatraz] #2979357
03/08/19 10:03 PM
03/08/19 10:03 PM
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Delta Offline
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I prefer passive, although active have their place, especially in metal applications. Both my Strat and Epi ES-335 are passive, but my metal guitar (ESP LTD KH 602) has active EMG Buckers. My Godin Icon Type 2 Icon has the revoicer system that allows both from the pair of SD 59s. I find the actives are more difficult to deal with when recording tracks.


"Let me stand next to your fire!", Jimi Hendrix
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Delta] #2979360
03/08/19 10:31 PM
03/08/19 10:31 PM
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picker Offline
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Just haven't had the opportunity to work with active pickups, mostly due to poverty. I always wanted to try one of those EMG David Gilmour setups.


Always remember that you’re unique. Just like everyone else.



Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: picker] #2979365
03/08/19 11:23 PM
03/08/19 11:23 PM
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Dannyalcatraz Offline
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I must confess that I almost bought the Fernandes Retrorocket DG for essentially that reason.

FWIW, it’s been discontinued, but some can still be found online for not a hell of a lot.
https://reverb.com/item/19202437-fernand...blic-of-natural


Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap”.

My FLMS- Murphy's Music in Irving, Tx

http://murphysmusictx.com/
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Dannyalcatraz] #2979375
03/09/19 12:56 AM
03/09/19 12:56 AM
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Delta Offline
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From my experience, the actives are louder and have more definition.


"Let me stand next to your fire!", Jimi Hendrix
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Delta] #2979683
03/11/19 01:49 PM
03/11/19 01:49 PM
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p90jr Offline
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Passive, and not high output, are my preference. The "heaviest" stuff I play is on the punk/noise side of the spectrum... I don't play anything close to modern metal, and the hard rock stuff I like and play occaisionally is more of the AC/DC/Thin Lizzy/Mick Ronson side of things with a tad of overdrive but not heavy distortion.

Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: p90jr] #2979692
03/11/19 02:45 PM
03/11/19 02:45 PM
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DocPate Offline OP
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Along this line, do you use a preamp pedal? Just curious.

Most are rather expensive (Over $100) but Boss makes one that has good reviews. Boss AD2 is advertised under $100 but says it's acoustic preamp. Anyone have experience?


Last edited by DocPate; 03/11/19 07:08 PM.
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: DocPate] #2979704
03/11/19 04:41 PM
03/11/19 04:41 PM
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Near Phoenix Az
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desertbluesman Offline
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Originally Posted By: DocPate
Along this line, do you use a preamp pedal? Just curious.

Most are rather expensive (Over $100) but Boss makes one that has good reviews. Boss AD2 is advertised under $100 but says it's acoustic preamp. Anyone have experience?


No experience here, but it sure looks like it would be useful if it works as intended.


dbm
If it sounds good, it is good !!
http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=143231&content=music
Harvey Cedars is my stage name on Soundclick
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: desertbluesman] #2979714
03/11/19 06:30 PM
03/11/19 06:30 PM
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p90jr Offline
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I have preamp pedals...

Acoustic? I have a couple of D-Tar thing... a Mama Bear, which is a preamp with modeled sounds you can add or substitute to your signal (I need to have it fixed at the moment, though) and an Equinox, which is a three-band parametric EQ thing... if I'm playing solo acoustic I'll use those. With a band I just plug into a BBE Acoustimaxx preamp and then feed an XLR out of that into my Ashdown Acoustic amp, which has a great sounding preamp itself (the Acoustimaxx gives me another notch filter to fight feedback if needed, a mute button with is handy and has the BBE Sonic Maximizer built in, which I use as a boost for solos or passages that need it). I got the Acoustimaxx brand new for $90 during a sale online.

Electric... My current fave is the Chase Tone Secret Preamp, based on the Echoplex EP3 preamp circuit but different than the Xotic EP Boost (which I like, too). I also have a couple of the Siegmund Microtube preamps and sometimes I'll put those in the acoustic rig, too, if I want some tube "warmth." Klons are preamps, right? I have a Klon KTR... I dunno, I kind of think any drive pedal is effectively a preamp, really...

Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: p90jr] #2979903
03/13/19 12:00 AM
03/13/19 12:00 AM
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Larryz Offline
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I do not use pedals much anymore Doc...but I have used a MXR Comp and a Tech 21 Blonde and my Fender Floor for a clean boost. A clean boost is great for leads and with a stomp on the switch back down to your rhythm volume. I don't care for volume pedals. The AD 2 looks very interesting for crafting your acoustic guitar sound, controlling feed back and adding a little reverb. Nice looking and sounding acoustic pedal in the demo. I think it would be worth giving it a try/test... cool


Take care, Larryz
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Larryz] #2979938
03/13/19 12:07 PM
03/13/19 12:07 PM
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Winston Psmith Offline
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Couple of things -

In the Guitar store where I used to work, every so often we'd get someone who wanted us to mount active pickups in a Guitar that wasn't built for them. You don't just swap out the pickups, you have to rout out the body for the battery pack, make a channel for the wiring, and swap out the pots for 25k pots. (Yes, you're reading that # correctly; 25k, not 250k, not 500k.) If you didn't like them, you'd essentially compromised your Guitar for a failed experiment.

I would try out a few Guitars with active pickups, to see if you really like, or need, that sound. I'd also check out the Duncan Activators, passive pickups that emulate the output of actives.

As far as Pre-Amp pedals, my go-to front end pedal was the MXR Micro Amp; cheap, simple and effective. I noticed that other Dynamics-driven pedals, like Envelope Filters, worked much better with the Micro Amp in the signal chain. I set it right around Noon, just enough that I could hear the difference when I switched it on.

One old trick for Clean Boost; crank the output on your EQ pedal. Set the Frequency Band sliders for Flat Response, and just turn up the Level control. Put it first in line in your signal chain, and just leave it on. I've also seen players with 2 EQ's, one on either side of their OD/Distortion pedal, to contour the sound going in and out of the Dirt box.

I'd be wary of combining Pre-Amp and Compressor pedals, because of Gain Structure and noise levels, but that's me.


"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

http://www.novparolo.com
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Winston Psmith] #2979943
03/13/19 12:48 PM
03/13/19 12:48 PM
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Larryz Offline
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@ Winston, There are drop-in pickguards for Strats with active EMG pickups and pots already loaded with the battery mounted underneath. You only have to solder the pickguard to the input/output jack. You can save the old pickguard and put the guitar back to stock in 20 minutes or less. I have 3 of them and even though the battery will last as long as an acoustic guitar battery, I chose to route mine in the spring compartment so I don't have to pull the whole pickguard just to change the battery. This is a great way to take a Squire or MIM Strat up to the level of a David Gilmour Strat (or other artist model) in no time...


On the Pre-Amp, Compressor, Distortion, OD's, etc., you can run duplicates in-line but don't kick them on at the same time. I liked running my MXR Comp in front of my Boss Distortion or Blues Driver as it boost the volume and sustain for dirt. Or, leave the dirt out by only using the Comp for clean boost. I also had both an MXR Comp and an MXR Dyna Comp in line but didn't use them at the same time...now I'm just into playing clean and only need a single clean boost. A buddy has a nice one (that I may think about picking one up later). I'm not sure which one it is, but it looks like an Xotic Super Clean.


cool

Last edited by Larryz; 03/13/19 12:52 PM.

Take care, Larryz
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Larryz] #2979990
03/13/19 05:20 PM
03/13/19 05:20 PM
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Winston Psmith Offline
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@Larryz -we sold the pre-wired EMG pick guards, including the Gilmour rig, but sadly, most of the folks asking for actives weren't bringing in Strat-style Guitars, they were bringing in budget Explorer knock-off's (at least there was room to rout those out for a battery pack) or something similar.

I knew a lot of players who were running a Comp into a low-gain OD like a Blues Driver, for that little extra oomph, or others running a low-gain OD into a slightly higher-gain Distortion pedal. Stacking OD's was another favorite trick. I found that there's a point of diminishing returns, if each pedal in the line is signal clipping.


"Monsters are real, and Ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes, they win." Stephen King

http://www.novparolo.com
Re: Active or Passive Pickups [Re: Winston Psmith] #2979995
03/13/19 05:48 PM
03/13/19 05:48 PM
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Larryz Offline
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+1 Winston, I don't know why EMG just [picked] on Strats? I guess because there were a lot of buyers starting out with a cheaper model like a Squire or a MIM and then upgrading them. A popular thing to do. I liked them so well I upgraded 3 USA Strats. Mine have 3 singles with EXG and SPC, 2 humbuckers with a 3 way switch and a volume control for each with a master tone, and my American Deluxe which is 2 singles and a humbucker at the bridge with a master tone and master volume for all 3 pups. I like it a lot as they set the volume knob down lower from the 1st string...


+1 also on the pedals not fighting each other a signal clipping.


cool


Take care, Larryz

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