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NSLALP
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started this at SS.org because they're the biggest ERG whores, but I realized I'll get some intelligent opinions over here too. And I :wub: you guys.

Jim at Strictly 7 guitars posted a poll at SS.org asking about 8-string single-coil pickups. I've been talking with him and know that both are possibilities, although he's asked me not to delve into too many details at this point.

I understand that they're two completely different camps, but in my experience 8-string actives seem to have some advantages over passives, e.g. evenness of sound across the strings and higher S/N ratios (bigger magnets and windings in 8-string passives, all things being equal, should raise the noise floor a bit over a 6- or 7-string passive). In a non-humbucking design, this would become even more important.

I have no experience playing with active single coils, so I don't really know how they sound compared to a passive. I do know that I loved David Gilmour's Delicate Sound of Thunder or PULSE tour sounds and he was rocking an EMG set in his strats.

So if you could have, say, an EMG 81TW with two SA single coils, or a Blackout set with a single coil in the middle and a 5-way switch, would you take it over a passive set? Why or why not?

I'm asking both for my sake because I'm pretty hot to order an 8 with a single-coil, as well as Jim's sake so he doesn't waste time developing the least attractive option.
 

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Premium Member
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I'm totally biased because I hate active pickups. If I wanted an eight string single coil I'd want it to be passive. I think if I single coil was wound correctly it would be great in an eight string. It would add a lot of punch and clarity to the sound.
 

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NSLALP
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13,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm totally biased because I hate active pickups. If I wanted an eight string single coil I'd want it to be passive. I think if I single coil was wound correctly it would be great in an eight string. It would add a lot of punch and clarity to the sound.
What's in your Loomis, did you get rid of the 707's?

EDIT: And what do you mean by wound correctly? Do you think it should be a lower-output vintage style?
 

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Dream Crusher
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Premium Member
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What's in your Loomis, did you get rid of the 707's?
Dan at Oni Guitars made some custom passive humbuckers in a EMG 707 housing. I affectionately refer to them as Drop Bears. :wub:
 

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Premium Member
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Bite me Josh! :lol:

By wound correctly I just meant wound to handle all the low end they are bound to get pummeled with. I think something more moderate output would probably work best.
 

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NSLALP
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13,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
(Search yields information on Drop Bears. Intriguing.)

Would I be wrong to guess that they're like a lower-output Evolution or something? Tight + bright but more of a vintage-hot ceramic output level?
 

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Dream Crusher
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They sounded like big hot single-coils to me. Ceramic magnet.
 

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Premium Member
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Stop answering my questions Josh! :lol:

Anyway they are articulate, pretty bright and have moderate output. Hence the single coil comparisons they always get.
 

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NSLALP
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13,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Also, for my purposes, I feel like I'm done with the low F# thing. I have O4P strings inbound to tune to high Ab4/A4. This probably means I could use a slightly hotter pickup and not worry about the low string bashing the coil with silliness (current :p). But I'm interested in both tuning possibilities.

EDIT: You two are cute, finishing each other's sentences and such :ryan:
 

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Nobody Has Seen Me Lately
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I had Nordstrand build a passive single coil for this one.
 

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Dream Crusher
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I had Nordstrand build a passive single coil for this one.
Holy shit! I never saw Chance's guitar finished. That looks great!
 

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Good news, Everyone!
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for single coils, I REALLY like the EMG SA-X, probably my favorite single-coil sound of all time.

All my guitars have actives in them, but I don't really consider myself biased towards them, I'm just at a point where none of the guitars I own have passives.
 

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Premium Member
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PASSIVE!
 

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Hasta la vista, Baby
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I had a 707tw, and while the single coil sound was pretty cool, I'd stick to passives for more vintage vibe.
 

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NSLALP
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13,286 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I'm getting a lot of passive fans here. It makes sense. Honestly, I did not realize how fucking loud and compressed even the Blackout 8's are until rehearsal last night (can't imagine how EMGs are). I had to turn down considerably when I plugged in the Blackout guitar, even compared to my Evo7. Huge difference. I am really kind of addicted to the sound, and it works perfectly with my band, but I'm worried I'd have to switch everything I own to actives if I want my backup guitars to be equally loud. And then I wonder why I'd bother with a single-coil since it'll have to be ripping hot too.

Would like to try an EMG SA-X.
 

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Good news, Everyone!
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EMGs aren't as powerful as blackouts, actually. my six-string with a blackout puts out considerably more power than my 7-string with EMGs.
 
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