Liking Emg's More As I Get Older
Mertay
Apr 29 2021, 05:11 PM
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So take my comments entirely for modern metal/rock productions sounds.

After we record guitars, what happens in the mix process is balancing freq.s to get rid of too much rawness (static peaks, harshness, boomyness etc.) out, de-noise by gating or even at times restoration plug-ins, compress so elements won't dynamically mask each other...and if the track is really guitar heavy the mastering process also adds on top of those.

So when we play an EMG guitar in a store, notice what we complain about then; Flat sounding, not dynamic... even them being so noiseless can be a complaint that they don't feel organic smile.gif

So since they are so neutral sounding, when plugged into the same amp compared to a passive pickup to my ears they give a very "production ready" guitar sound meaning there isn't much there to be fixed. By the way I'm no expert on these pickups, only familiar with the famous 81/60 set (demo'ing guitars in stores) and if you go to their website they have ton's of models.

I'm curious about those who has more experience with them would agree with my thoughts...

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This post has been edited by Mertay: Apr 29 2021, 05:30 PM


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Todd Simpson
Apr 29 2021, 10:58 PM
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I used to love emg pickups back in the day smile.gif For a while, long ago, they were "The" Metal pickup of choice. They had a built in preamp and low pass filter that came in very handy when driving a tube amp. So it made a very natural pair for EMGs to be paired with a high gain tube amp and this was what many folks used to do. Metallica helped make this sound sort of standardized. I had the Kerry king set with the 20db booster as you may recall that I stuffed in a clone les paul. It was a sort of zakk wylde approach but with a boost switch.

Once I switched to using amp sims, I found I fell out of love with EMG standard sets and later I started to like the EMG66 which is an ALNICO EMG designed to sound a lot more organic and more like a high gain passive pickups. I had the EMG66 in my 8 String Rusty Cooley Dean RG8 and it worked very well. Much better than the stock 808 which came in it.

I still like the 66, but these days FISHMAN has largely replaced EMG for many of the folks that were hard core EMG fans. Tosin Abasi and wads of others.

Still, they are very clean and "production ready" as you mention. Not a lot of noise, always a predictable output level, etc. They are a very known commodity which can help in a fast paced recording session.


QUOTE (Mertay @ Apr 29 2021, 12:11 PM) *
So take my comments entirely for modern metal/rock productions sounds.

After we record guitars, what happens in the mix process is balancing freq.s to get rid of too much rawness (static peaks, harshness, boomyness etc.) out, de-noise by gating or even at times restoration plug-ins, compress so elements won't dynamically mask each other...and if the track is really guitar heavy the mastering process also adds on top of those.

So when we play an EMG guitar in a store, notice what we complain about then; Flat sounding, not dynamic... even them being so noiseless can be a complaint that they don't feel organic smile.gif

So since they are so neutral sounding, when plugged into the same amp compared to a passive pickup to my ears they give a very "production ready" guitar sound meaning there isn't much there to be fixed. By the way I'm no expert on these pickups, only familiar with the famous 81/60 set (demo'ing guitars in stores) and if you go to their website they have ton's of models.

I'm curious about those who has more experience with them would agree with my thoughts...

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Steve Gilfield
Apr 29 2021, 11:26 PM
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I think you are absolutely right about them being recording ready!

There is little to none tweaking of the EQ every time I record with my guitar that has EMGs (89/SA/SA).

Also, Lukather used to use them back in the day so, if they were good for such a great session musician like him, then they are good enough for a bedroom musician like me biggrin.gif

Here are some examples of how they sound like:



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jstcrsn
Apr 30 2021, 12:27 AM
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QUOTE (Mertay @ Apr 29 2021, 05:11 PM) *
So take my comments entirely for modern metal/rock productions sounds.

After we record guitars, what happens in the mix process is balancing freq.s to get rid of too much rawness (static peaks, harshness, boomyness etc.) out, de-noise by gating or even at times restoration plug-ins, compress so elements won't dynamically mask each other...and if the track is really guitar heavy the mastering process also adds on top of those.

So when we play an EMG guitar in a store, notice what we complain about then; Flat sounding, not dynamic... even them being so noiseless can be a complaint that they don't feel organic smile.gif

So since they are so neutral sounding, when plugged into the same amp compared to a passive pickup to my ears they give a very "production ready" guitar sound meaning there isn't much there to be fixed. By the way I'm no expert on these pickups, only familiar with the famous 81/60 set (demo'ing guitars in stores) and if you go to their website they have ton's of models.

I'm curious about those who has more experience with them would agree with my thoughts...

well ,they were designed to push a tube amp, the problem is everyone is using plugins. I love the tone, it has it's place however and I feel it is a one trick pony and if that is what you are looking for it does the job well

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Mertay
Apr 30 2021, 12:56 AM
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QUOTE (jstcrsn @ Apr 29 2021, 11:27 PM) *
well ,they were designed to push a tube amp, the problem is everyone is using plugins. I love the tone, it has it's place however and I feel it is a one trick pony and if that is what you are looking for it does the job well


But doesn't being one trick pony apply to (high-output) passive pickups too?

I mean yeah we can split them etc. but currently I have a wiring that gives me almost all possible splits/parallels (its like spagetti inside the guitar smile.gif ) but to be honest I don't find myself using those features.

QUOTE (Steve Gilfield @ Apr 29 2021, 10:26 PM) *
...


Hard o find someone who doesn't like Lukather sounds from EMG days smile.gif which reminded me not all EMG's sound "sterile", lukather set might be a good example to that.

QUOTE (Todd Simpson @ Apr 29 2021, 09:58 PM) *
I used to love emg pickups back in the day smile.gif For a while, long ago, they were "The" Metal pickup of choice. They had a built in preamp and low pass filter that came in very handy when driving a tube amp. So it made a very natural pair for EMGs to be paired with a high gain tube amp and this was what many folks used to do. Metallica helped make this sound sort of standardized. I had the Kerry king set with the 20db booster as you may recall that I stuffed in a clone les paul. It was a sort of zakk wylde approach but with a boost switch.

Once I switched to using amp sims, I found I fell out of love with EMG standard sets and later I started to like the EMG66 which is an ALNICO EMG designed to sound a lot more organic and more like a high gain passive pickups. I had the EMG66 in my 8 String Rusty Cooley Dean RG8 and it worked very well. Much better than the stock 808 which came in it.

I still like the 66, but these days FISHMAN has largely replaced EMG for many of the folks that were hard core EMG fans. Tosin Abasi and wads of others.

Still, they are very clean and "production ready" as you mention. Not a lot of noise, always a predictable output level, etc. They are a very known commodity which can help in a fast paced recording session.


Last time I played an EMG was with an Eclipse, both me an a friend of mine thought with that type of guitar (Les Paul) was the perfect pair for those classic EMG's. It was kind of best of both worlds giving an active and passive feel to the tone.

I also agree using computers and processors these days I really don't care if the PU's output is high or not or if it has a boost switch. I didn't play a guitar with Fishman's yet but to be honest never bumped into a youtube demo where I liked the sound. Probably because they're voiced for never styles I2m personally not into, Abasi is a good example as I like his work but the tone isn't for me.

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klasaine
Apr 30 2021, 01:13 AM
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All pickups are 'one trick ponies' if you have bad to average technique in both your hands.
Lukather used them (EMGs) because they're noiseless. He sounds the same regardless of his guitar, amp or pickups. The classic Luke tone (Toto's first four records) is a Les Paul with regular humbuckers (PAFs) and/or a Valley Arts super Strat into a Yamaha G-100 solid state amp and modded Marshalls. The EB guitars and CAE amps came way later.

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This post has been edited by klasaine: Apr 30 2021, 01:13 AM
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Mertay
Apr 30 2021, 01:34 AM
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QUOTE (klasaine @ Apr 30 2021, 12:13 AM) *
...


Still nice but I'm not as fond of his tones as much with his newer 2 passive humbuckers from Dimarzio to honest. I never actually looked in depth but thinking about those EMG HSS's always reminds me of nice tones. Guido from GMC also uses them.

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Todd Simpson
Apr 30 2021, 02:58 AM
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Here is a demo of the 57/66 combo which is my fave set that EMG currently produce. If I was gonna put emg in a guitar, it would be this set. Here is FLUFF getting fluffy smile.gif

MERTAY: I'm with you on the les paul. The EMGs worked better in that than in any other guitar I"ve ever tried the in. Not sure why, but I get why ZAKK was so big on that combo of LP/EMG.


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This post has been edited by Todd Simpson: Apr 30 2021, 03:00 AM
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