Hello and welcome to this week's article!
The title speaks for itself: I wanted to compare my 2 favourite active pickups, the ones that I am mounting in the bridge position of my 2 guitars, to see how they perform with exactly the same settings (Jst Ben Bruce amp sim).
To be honest the comparison is not 100% fair, since I have used the same settings and as you can see the Emg 707 has a much lower output compared to the Blackout, nevertheless I wanted to show you how big can be the difference from one pickup to another, even among actives.
The Emg 707 (that I use in a LTD MH-417) features an alnico magnet, which gives it a more classic tone, thus retaining power, tightness, and sits extremely well in the mix.
By tweaking the amp you can achieve many different tones and due to the not so extreme output it retains also some dynamics, which are not so common in active pickups.
The Seymour Duncan Blackout (mounted on my Ibanez ARZ 800), on the other hand, is raw power. It has a much higher output, a ceramic magnet, and even if it has a bit too much lower mids, it has this slightly scooped high-mids that makes it clear in a very pleasant, not ice-picky way. This is the first version, the AHB-1 designed by Dino Cazares of Fear Factory, which is more manageable than the others.
From this comparison probably the Blackout comes out as a winner for metal, it is punchy, full of low end, and it has the right clarity to bite in the right frequencies, but I strongly recommend anyone also to try the Emg 707 and set the amp accordingly, you will discover why it is still today considered a 7 strings standard, especially in the studio, where a more controlled tone and the right mid range can make the difference in the mix.
Which one do you prefer?
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