EMGs, excessive compression & how I solved it.
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Thread: EMGs, excessive compression & how I solved it.

  1. #1


    Join Date: Nov 2013
    Location: Akhet-Aten
    ME: Jackson CS KE2
    MB: LTD Surveyor
    Rig: Diezel Einstein

    iTrader: 2 (100%)

    EMGs, excessive compression & how I solved it.

    I recently started recording guitars for my band's next release (about fucking time) and after trying my JEM and deciding it sounded too thin (for Death Metal rhythm), we tried my Jackson KE2 (EMG 81/60) and decided we had to use it. Sounded way beefier and meaner in general, but there was one hitch. We looked at the waves of the test recordings and they were MEGA compressed.
    Yeah, sure. EMGs are typically more compressed than passive pickups, but this was at brickwall levels and something was clearly wrong.

    We tried a few things - checking all settings on the DI box, changing pickup height, testing different cables. No avail and we weren't having the same issue with any other EMG equipped guitars.
    As a last resort, I suggested changing batteries and our drummer (who's basically producing this) was sceptical but we tried it anyway.
    Boom. It worked. Never thought a battery could cause an issue that way around, but there you go!
    Hope this is useful to at least someone.
    call me on 911 (USA) or 999 (UK) for poser disposal services

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  4. #2


    Join Date: Sep 2008
    Location: 7th plane of ethereal hell
    ME: Ibanez UV7PWH
    Rig: VHT UL /AxeFX2 /Mesa RK2

    iTrader: 8 (100%)

    do the 18v mod

  5. #3


    Join Date: Oct 2008
    Location: Tokyo
    ME: Ibanez RGIXL7-ABL
    MB: Ibanez SR505
    Rig: Fractal Audio AX8

    iTrader: 0

    Huh. I wonder what was up with that. Maybe it's what happens when you use cheap, off-brand 9v batteries. I've only ever used Panasonic, Energizer, Sony, Duracell, and other name brands in my active pickups (EMGs, Blackouts, Bartolinis, and now my Fishmans), but I do use off-brand 9v batteries in my tuners and other pieces of gear that are not connected to the guitar's sound. That said, the reason I use name brand isn't because I thought off-brand would affect the sound, more that off-brand 9 volts oftentimes don't last as long as brand name batteries and I know someone who had an off-brand 9 volt leak in his guitar and he had to replace several parts that the acid had eaten away at.

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