Although the EMG-85 Humbucker has more measurable output than the 81, its frequency response and string interface are different. The 85 uses 2 Alnico magnet-loaded coils with a wide aperture to mainta... Read More
Although the EMG-85 Humbucker has more measurable output than the 81, its frequency response and string interface are different. The 85 uses 2 Alnico magnet-loaded coils with a wide aperture to maintain a beefy low end and a fatter top end. Because of a more natural tone, it works great as a rhythm and blues pickup because it has loads of output but isn't muddy. It's a perfect choice as a rhythm pickup in combination with an 81 in the bridge.
The midrange has great definition and doesn't get foggy or muddy in the rhythm position. The EMG-85 guitar pickup works best if you like the natural distortion that comes from overdriving the front end of your amp. Under any condition, it responds accurately to your technique.
Reviewed by 8 customers
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I've played emgs since 87. in 95 had them put in my Ibanez Iceman ps-10/2. this one always sounded better when I opened it up I found the 85 was in the bridge by mistake! Its fuller and wider than the 81. A modern Brown sound. I don't know why more people don't use it in the bridge, and I like the 81 in the neck.
So, when i got the 85 home from getting it installed i was not impressed, but being as stupid as i am i didnt mess with the tone controll on my guitar, when i did, its freakin amazing, pinch harmonics were piercing just like i wanted them to be, its really deep and sounds just like my favorite band that uses them. i am completley satisfyed with this pickup, i had it installed in the bridge, and the emg SA installed in the neck, they are a good combo, these pickups are 1000% WORTH YOUR MONEY!!!!!
so far this ickup rocks and it got in days :) if you like to rock like me get this pickup
The 85 is very loud and very tonefull. I was using a 81/85 combo before and the 85 was just too bassy and too powerfull for the neck, it screamed "Put me in the bridge!!!". So i did put it in the bridge and it changed everything. It has a brutal sound with high distortion, palm muting is amazing, and it sounds great with drop tunings. If your a fan of drop tunings like D, C, D standard, B, A etc, this will do you justice. I can also get a very Alexi Laihoish tone from this pickup. Another thing is that pinch harmonics SCREAM with this pickup. With the 81 I had a hard time getting pinch harmonics scream(I would have to hook up my Ibanez TS-808 tube screamer reissue to add harmonics), but this solved everyhing. The best set you can have is either a 85/85 set or a 85/60 set.(The 60 is a great pickup for arpeggiating sweeps and solos). As hard as it is to believe, this pickup was just as tonefull as a duncan blackout and much more natural. Put the 18V mod and you will make it sizzle more than a dimarzio super distortion, D sonic, D activator, X2n and duncan JB and all those passive monsters. EMG's have potential, much potential. Don't listen to people's complaints about sterileness, because there is nothing sterile about EMGs.
Tried this pickup out along with the 81 on a ZW Les Paul. This pickup is great for clean rhythms, but metal rhythm players should look at the 60.
I have the ZW pickup set and put the 85 in the neck (as most players do) and the 81 in the bridge position. Man was I disappointed. Thin and weak, and the 85 was WAY louder than the 81, so I switched the positions and WOW it is like night and day. Adam D from Killswitch uses the 85 in the bridge as well, as for good reason. Its like getting drop kicked by a bull. Try it. You will see.
this is a realy great pickup for eveything but palm muting with high gain. if you are into metal and you palm mute alot, you will be dissapointed with this pickup. when you palm mute with this pickup(using high gain) it sounds weak and doesnt have much bass to it. it is good for eveything else though. pinch harmonics really stand out and it gives a really sharp sound with no crunch. so if youre going for a slayer sound, dont get this pickup. its good for any slyle of music if your going for a sharp sound.
I got this pickup put in my jackson dinky in the neck position for christmas and am completely satisfied it works great for a rhythm pickup and when not playing u cannot even tell you have your amp on it is so quite
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