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Etremly High Output Pickups


theitalianrob
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im looking for the highest output humbucker i can find to add to my guitar to form the heaviest metal sound ever, the most i found was a kent armgstrong motherbucker hat are 27k. i hear rumor that at one time there was one on ebay with 57k but i have yet to find it. anyone know of any other hight output pups?

Edited by theitalianrob
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The impedance of the pickup does not dictate how much output it will have. The magnet strength and pickup design are factors as well.

The highest output is probably the EMG 81 but its active.

You don't neccessarily need the highest output pickup to get a very heavy metal sound. A good preamp within the guitar rig will make a huge difference, whether its part of the amp itself or separate.

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A Duncan LiveWire Metal will rearrange your neighbor's china cabinet quite nicely, provided you're using a decent amp.

Look, here's the deal: you don't necessarily NEED a high-output pickup to get the thickest metal sound possible. It all depends on your total setup. If you're running a modern, high-gain hot rod amp like a Mesa or Shiva, you don't need a high-output pickup to kick up the overdrive. Let the amp do the work and keep the signal clean. If you have an older vintage-gain amp like a plexi or even a JCM 800, higher-output pickups will definitely help kick the overdrive up, but you're going to sacrifice clarity and response plus you'll probably need an overdrive stompbox anyway.

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The EMG 85 actually has a higher output than the 81. Can I suggest using a preamp with a fair amount of gain? 3dB gain is a fair push on your amp if that's what you're looking for. Further than that, an active EQ which you can switch in/out is awesome if you want to kick your amps distortion with different colouration.

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The EMG 85 actually has a higher output than the 81.

True but the 81 is typically used for bridge applications correct?

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*Most* people do, yes. The 85 was designed more as a neck pickup, but it works nicely in the bridge position. The bass response is lacking due to the lower movement in the strings at fundamentals but it is still pretty beefy. I prefer the EMG60 in the neck position myself - the 85 is a bit too much.

Getting back to the point - "looking for the highest output humbucker i can find to add to my guitar to form the heaviest metal sound ever".

I'm afraid you're missing a lot of the point on this one. The more you distort a signal, the less dynamics you have in the signal content. Unfortunately a square wave doesn't make the ultimate metal tone, which is what you're doing by having a higher output and driving the input section of an amp.

The parts of the tone you need to be considering depend on the style.

Do you play:

- Solo? Rhythm?

- Chords? Diads? Single notes?

- Fast? Slow?

- With another guitarist? With yourself? :-)

All these factors contribute to how your sound works. The EQ content, the dynamics, the harmonic content....

Personally, I think that one of the most awesome metal sounds I heard recorded when I was learning about guitar tone was Faith No More's "Jizzlobber" from t4:17. It turns out the sound is down to bass-heavy EQ, excellent supporting bass guitar sound reinforcing the lines and inverted fifth chords.

Sound is in the fingers my friend!

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I agree with Prostheta, having high output helps but what comes after the pickup is probably more important...if you're wanting to boost your signal to drive a tube amp then you can do that with an EQ pedal's volume slider. As you're using a digital amp having to much imput can be a BAD thing, when you overload digital amps it doesn't sound nice.

The Kent Armstrong motherbucker is a good pickup (I have one) and it does give a good output but its got a lot of trebble and not a lot else (so you have to use a pretty strong EQ to tame it).

but like Prostheta said 'Sound is in the fingers my friend!' never more true than with metal :D

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I agree - too much output and you loose articulation. No longer will you clearly hear the notes of a chord and you are stuck with chunking some 5ths.

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ive seen that 57k on ebay ...thought it was a joke it was a white active

that the guy claimed were limited quanities as they were prototypes

ill look for it for ya

does it have to be "active"?

if not a dimebucker is very hot same as a lawrence XL500

i had an XL500 and an original L500

i hated the XL but wish i had the L500 back very hot and sounded perfect

the Xl was much to harsh. though dime seemed to control it well

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Comparing DC resistance of an active pickup and a passive pickup is like comparing apples and oranges. Active pickups tend to be wound with differant gauge wire to passives and as the resistance of a pickup coil is related both to the length of wire and gauge its not really a good comparison. Anyway with an active pickup you could have high output from the actual pickup but low output from the circuity (would be advatagous because you could have low output but high ouput impedance and low noise).

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I personally avoid high output pickups now but i have had kent armstrong motherbuckers, xl500's and a fair few EMG's pass through my hands and occasionally go in my guitars. I much prefer the sound of a well made, moderate output pickup going into a well made amp, maybe with some help from a pedal if it needs it. A heavy sound rarely comes mainly from the pickups.

If i was going for a high powered pickup again it would probably be one of these:

http://bareknucklepickups.co.uk/ZH-warpig.html

http://bareknucklepickups.co.uk/ZH-nailbomb.html

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Someone said about a Lace red dually... heavy metal = NO!

To be honest. The higher the resistance, the less good pickups tend to sound. I mean the SD invader is a 'high output pickup'... but sorry. it sounds rubbish.

Try something less extreme and you'll go far :D There's a reason why lots of metal players use duncan JB's... because they sound good B) An active circuit is a good way of increasing the output. Look at guitarfetish website for some cheap and cheerful ones. oh... and buy a nice big amp :D

S

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Indeed. My amps consist of a Marshall JCM800, Peavey 5150 and a Trace Elliot Series 6 AH-300. My Ibanez Prestige S1540FM with a full swap to Seymour Duncans sounds a lot more dynamic and musical than my ESP Explorers with EMG81/85/60s. The EMGs just CRUSH and nothing else, especially when you reverse wrap the stop tail ;-)

I had an Invader in my Washburn A10 and you could have sucked a turd to a point and stabbed yourself in the eye to get a better tone. The neck pickup (JB) was glorious for bluesy stuff though.

I have to put my two-penneth in about the DiMarzio Tone Zone - really awesome pickup when in the right guitar! That right guitar being my old ESP Mirage which unfortunately is no longer with us.

Man, how can anybody say high output is the be-all and end-all of crushing tones?! I guess it's good if you don't have other musicians who require fitting into the same audio spectrum as us lowly hoo-mans.

Edited by Prostheta
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how would a gfs crusader be in teh neck pos, for a more versitile stone without super high output.

i've also been looking into an emg h4.

i have an emg 81 for teh bridge so i need soemthign to compliment that well. somethign good for both lead guitar and heavy metal rythm guitar, and woudl still sound clear enough on fast thrashy stuff, my friend told me to look into hig output pups so tahts why i asked, now i see thats not really teh way to go.

EDIT: this is for an ibanez rg. is h/s/h so idk what im doing for the single coil. all i know right now is 81 in the bridge. , also in tye near future i might be gettign a xaviere les paul but those have gfs pups so idk if id need to replace.

Edited by theitalianrob
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Try www.bareknucklepickups.co.uk These are hand wound PU's. The forum is extremely helpful and have some of the most knowledgeable people around on to give advice. they havn't been around long but already Muse, Steve Stevens, Gweeof Whitehorn, Rooster amonst many others are some of the more popular bands that use them. check out the Warpig or MiracleMan. And if your not completely satisfied with the standard ones, Tim will custom wind you one. These guys are the sh!t. I have a MM and it kicks my EMG arse.

the downside is that they are more expensive but totally worth every penny!! I bought one for my first guitar I made, and have a £3500 godin, a PRS style with EMG Zakk Wylde set and a les paul copy with a Kent Armstrong Motherbucker sitting next to it, and I can tell you that even tho my guitar has a neck thats almost an inch thick!!! I still prefer it because of the pickup!

hope this helps

Matt

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