Active pickups were popular in the 80s and 90s. They tend to sound dated. There is a current trend toward "vintage" and lo-fi sounding gear. Passive pickups are more reliable, as anyone can tell you who has ever run out of battery at an out-of-the-way gig or studio. Active pickups carry a lot more volume, which is cool for live, but irrelevant in the studio. Active pickups tend to sound brittle in the studio, less warm, less punchy, more bright. Passive pickups tend to sit better in a mix. I'm pretty much talking about rock/pop/soul and country here. If you're doing R&B or electric jazz, or hip hop, these aesthetics might not apply.