« A more natural 85 »
Publié le 06/01/11 à 08:10
Recently EMG started making pickups with the new X series preamp. This preamp was made to simulate the sound you get when you use an EMG pickup with the 18v mod. The 18v mod is something a lot of guitars have been doing to get a more natural sound out of their EMG pickups. The EMG 85 came out around the same time at the 81 and while the 81 was a searing metal machine the 85 was really the more versatile one of the two. The most common setup for EMG pickups is an 81 in the bridge and an 85 in the neck but if you are adventurous you can try an 85 in the bridge. The EMG 85 is the low end metal tone answer to EMG 81s searing high end gain. If the EMG 81s tone was a pointy square the 85 would be a round circle. The EMG 85 offers a more smoother or rounded tone than the EMG 81. With the X preamp this tone is even rounder and more organic. The EMG 85 can be used in the neck and bridge position with good results. In the neck positions you can get super smooth lead tones or even bluesy tones. In the bridge positions it can make any decent guitar sound gigantic. Overall I think the EMG 85 is a better overall pickup and the 85X is even better. It being less sharp than the 81 and more organic than the 85 makes it more useful for more kinds of music. The 81 is better only in the realm of high gain metal. If you are looking for an active pickup that can do more than just metal the 85X may be the way to go.