EMG 57/66 into a sg400 pro

Discussion in 'Epiphone SG' started by Julian Lopez, Sep 26, 2018.

  1. Julian Lopez

    Julian Lopez New Member

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    Hi Guys i was thinking of swapping my stock pickups with the EMG 57/66...why? they sound awesome...i don't really paly metal but the cleans and driven sounds on them are to die for...i was wondering if anyone has any experience with them or EMG in general? I also wanted to ask about the battery and what are the chances of it leaking etc and spoiling the whole circuitry in the cavity? Thanks in advance
     
  2. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    ETSG wisdom states:

    YOU CAN PUT A $2000 STEREO INTO A $500 CAR
    AND IT'S STILL A $500 CAR

    That said, I like to use Epiphone guitars as mod platforms
    because they don't cost a lot. I have fun modding guitars,
    and do it to play music on them, not to make a profit...

    That's a good thing. There are fans of EMG pickups on this
    forum who will chime in with their experience. I've never used
    the ones you mention.

    IMHO it will cost more than you paid for the guitar to get
    a decent routing job done for the battery... So maybe you
    should buy a guitar that already has a battery compartment
    and install your preferred pickups in that.

    Batteries only leak if you leave them in place for a long time.
    I don't think that's a concern, unless you turn out not to like
    the EMGs and put the guitar away for six months in the case.

    My suggestion is to spend your money on a decent bridge
    and electronic parts for your Epiphone,
    getting the frets level, the neck straight and the best setup job
    you can afford. IMHO those upgrades will improve your guitar.
    The stock pickups are quite good IMHO, if the ones in my Epi Wilshire
    are like what you have.

    Good luck with your project, and let's see some pictures.
     
    Six Stringed Demon likes this.
  3. Julian Lopez

    Julian Lopez New Member

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    Thanks for the advice...I've only been playing for about a year so the epiphone was well within my budget...the pups in them are the alnico classic pro with coil taps/splits so I'm unsure if it's the same one you have...speaking of bridges do you mean like those graphtech ones? I genrally play clean and classic rock and hard rock and i found the particular emg set is quite articulate...but i don't know the pros and cons associated with the active pickups...you can check them out here..this guys runs through some tones. Let me know what you think.
     
  4. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    I don't use active pickups in any of my guitars or basses.
    Mainly because I play with a group that doesn't use as loud a level of sound.
    The way I understand it, active pickups give a guitar's signal more power
    before it gets to the amp, which increases that to the distortion level.

    Guys who need this feature are those who play in bands that are so loud
    that their ears ring after an evening's performance
    . Drums can be louder than
    some amplifiers, and if your drummer plays so loud that you can't hear your
    own guitar when you're standing in front of your amp, you might need active
    pickups.

    But I don't think so... I think what any band needs is a good sound man on
    the board
    , to mix the band from the center of the room, and make sure that
    each player can be heard. I've listened to bands that were so loud it hurt,
    and everything sounded like mush to me.

    So I'm skeptical about active pickups, and have never wanted to mess with them.
    When it comes to your guitar, my point was that there's probably nothing wrong
    with the pickups you have. EMG is a good brand, and some of our members may
    comment on this thread. I think the Epiphone Alnico Classic pro pickups are
    probably just as good as the EMG setup
    ... and they are quite powerful.

    So I would counsel you to spend your money and effort on other improvements.
    If you've only been playing for about a year, then IMHO the first and best improvement
    you can make is to take some lessons. Search around for a good teacher, talk to
    them and listen to what they say, that will help you decide if you want to learn from
    them. Anyway lessons will help you in many ways you might not even know about.
    *grins

    While you're developing your skill, you may come to realize that the most interesting
    thing about the video you posted is the skill of the player. That player would sound
    the same on your Epiphone, IMHO. That's the kind of thing you can talk to your
    teacher about: How can I develop my skill so I can sound as good as this?
    I don't think it's the pickups.

    The next and most important improvement you can make to your guitar is to
    get it set up by the best luthier you can find. Talk to local pro guitarists, and ask them
    where they take their guitars for service. When you hear the same name a few times,
    you're on the right track. A well set up Epiphone is a joy to play, and will enhance your
    style in many ways.

    I don't think you need to buy anything. I think you should concentrate on your skill,
    and learn as much as you can from any teacher you select. An Epi G-400 is a decent
    guitar, you don't need to mod it IMHO.
     
  5. Julian Lopez

    Julian Lopez New Member

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    Wow thanks for the advice...i didn't think of it tbat way...I have been taking lessons since feb this year so as my learning journey is progressing I was thinking of trying to better the guitar...it was set-up at the shop i purchased ir from and i think it's ok...just needs some shielding cause it hisses but yea i too agree i like the g-400 pro i demoed this guitar and a epi les paul standard and preferred this...no regrets whatsoever
     
  6. Col Mustard

    Col Mustard Well-Known Member

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    well, you sound like you're on the right track.

    Hum bucker equipped guitars don't make too much noise (that's what Humbucker means)
    but they need to be grounded properly. Epiphone guitars keep getting better and better IMHO.
    I own two, and like both a lot. I'm partial to SGs over Les Pauls, but many players feel the
    opposite... go figure. There's room on this forum for all of us.

    So I wish you well in your journey. Mine began such a long time ago, it seems like some
    other planet. But I'm still playing and still gigging and have never regretted my choices.

    Changing pickups or other parts in an Epiphone guitar is something that many of us
    enjoy doing. My two Epiphones have been extensively modded, but I don't think they were
    bad to begin with. I just had to mess with them because I like them so much and wanted
    the best. But they were both quite serviceable when I bought them.

    I still believe that spending your money and effort on your own style,
    your own technique, your own skill and your own music
    is the best improvement you can make, and the most valuable.

    The hiss you hear might be your amp, and not your guitar.
     
    Chubbles likes this.
  7. Chubbles

    Chubbles Active Member

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    We should create a club for us modders. I even have a name: The Mod Squad.
     
  8. Bad Penguin

    Bad Penguin Active Member

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    Never been a fan of EMG's, and here's why. I tend to play clean, and that initial attack, just as the pick hits the string, sounds compressed to my ears. it's artificial sounding to me, and clean, I really notice it. For those that use a lot of gain, more power to you, EMG your heart out. But every guitar I ever got with EMG's in it, I ripped them out as soon as possible, and sold them on feebay.
     
  9. Kabrijj

    Kabrijj Active Member

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    First off, you probably won't need to do any routing to fit a battery in the guitar...
    27888984726_984ff60755_z.jpg

    ...then again, you might. This was in a Gibson 70s Tribute I had a while back. I don't think the quick connect system EMG has would fit, so I hard-wired it up myself to take up less room. Relatively tight squeeze, but doable. Along those lines, you will need to replace all the pots as the stock ones are not compatible with active pickups.

    Second... I've never had a 9v battery leak or explode on me. "AA" and "AAA" sure, but never a 9v. Not to say it doesn't happen, but it hasn't to me (yet... knock on wood).

    As far as EMG 57/66 in particular go, I think they are excellent pickups. The neck pickup in particular is fantastic. Much more dynamic, responsive and "traditional-like" than other EMGs I've used. They definitely excel with cleans and high gain situations. The crunchy in-betweens (I always think of AC/DC) they're OK. Probably not my first choice for blues or classic rock, but not bad either.

    I respectfully disagree with The Col on the volume topic. EMGs don't necessarily mean more volume from the amp -- although they are hotter, for sure. But if your drummer plays so loud to where you can't hear your guitar, you need a louder amp :naughty:

    Ultimately, in my opinion: EMGs are good pickups. I'd say the 57/66 combo are great pickups. Online, people typically either hate them or love them, with little middle ground. My best advice would be to try out a guitar with those pickups in it, through your rig (or as similar as you can get if in a store situation) and let your ears be the judge. If you like 'em, try to find a set used -- not only cheaper off the bat than buying new, but you'll take less of a hit if you decide to sell them down the road.
     

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