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Sunday, January 1, 2012

Changing pickups from EMG 85/81 to Seymour Duncan Blackouts

Seymour Duncan Mick Thomson Signature Blackouts set - AHB-3 EMTY
Why called them "EMTY" ? Why not "EMPTY" ?
He wants to remind people that his surname is Thomson, not Thompson.

I really like design of vintage Seymour Duncan and "SEVEN" logo
(Mick Thomson's band number in Slipknot) on these pickups.

How does it sound compare with EMG-81 ?
AHB-3 bridge pickup sounds much tighter in bottom and more aggressive in highs (treble bite).
It's a pretty bright pickup which works great with mahogany body guitar especially for
extreme drop-tuning even to drop A. I really love this pickup.

Comparing with EMG-85 and Seymour Duncan AHB-3N

EMG and SD Blackout active pickups are actually "identical" in some ways.
The "3-pin" header of them are both the same and they're completely interchangeble ... Hooray ! =)

First, loosen all the strings from my Caparison Angelus HGS. (modified with EMG pickups by myself previously).
Unplugged the EMG pickup then just insert the plug onto the "3-pin head" of the SD Blackout pickup. Fast and Easy !

Even though both EMG active pickups and Seymour Duncan Blackout pickups are interchangeable,
you still need to be aware of the following things -
1) Bridge ground wire -
The bridge ground wire need to be soldered on volume pot chassis from Seymour Duncan Blackouts wiring diagram.
However, I believe the active pickups don't need this bridge ground wire just like EMG active pickups.

2) Capacitor value of the tone pots.
The green color .01uF capacitors which are normally supplied with EMG pickups doesn't roll off nearly enough treble.
The red capacitors that came with Seymour Duncan Blackouts are .0474uF.
These make the tone control perform much more like a passive.

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