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EMG HZ? whats ur opinion?

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by Killface, Aug 5, 2011.

  1. Killface


    May 26, 2011
    Alsip IL
    Hay y'all I'm looking to get some funkyer pups in my schecter and was wondering what would be good for this? Also what's ur thoughts on the EMG HZs? I must say I'm not impressed. I like funky slap style play and don't quite get that from these. I have an ESP with active EMGs and they sound much nicer IMO.

    How hard would it be to upgrade from passive to active? I have a active tone circuit. If that matters LOL what's up with mesa boogie? After hearing the videos they sound great! Anyone use Mesa amps and cabs?
  2. Webtroll

    Webtroll Rolling for initiative

    Apr 23, 2006
    Austin, TX
    I like the HZs okay at best, but I haven't owned a bass with them. I think they are passive, no? They do not sound like their active pickups, so comparing them is like comparing vintage Fender pickups to EMGs. Apples and oranges. If the active EMG sound is what you'd prefer for your basses then get active EMGs. My own opinion is that the HZs aren't as good at passive tones than most other pickups, but that is an opinion only.
  3. milo


    Jul 22, 2004
    Too dark sounding to me.
  4. I believe they are passive pickups with an active preamp. I have them in my Schecter stiletto and I really like them, especially with new strings.
  5. tdub0199


    Mar 4, 2010
    Atlanta, Ga.
    I took my HZ's out of my Stiletto Custom and replaced them with the active 35P4's, way better tone IMO.....
  6. Mesa makes outstanding gear that is used by tons of professionals, IMO theirs are some of the best bass amplifiers available. All made in the US! They are the prototype "boutique" amp company.
  7. ysand


    Mar 26, 2005
    It's clear that you prefer the active EMG sound, so go for it. It's not that easy to make the change by yourself so I'd suggest to take it to a pro.

    As for the HZs, I had them in my Spector Zebop. I loved the tone, especially combined with the Tonepump pre. A few months back I found a pair of EMG DC and TW for an amazing price, so I swapped them (took it to a pro too) and I have to say that I prefer the tone of the active ones in my current band.
    For passive sound i use my VM P with flats, which is a totally different beast.

    The HZs are good PASSIVE pickups. If you like the sound, keep them. If not, get what you want.
  8. I like Hzs. I get slap tone out of them if I slap, but if I don't then they don't. Better than EMG select or Duncan Designed. Heard some basses with Hzs sound better than some basses with expensive active EMGs, but there are a lot of other variables there.

    Adding a preamp designed for passive pickups isn't terrible hard if you are good at soldering and know your wiring basics. The one bass I owned that came with Hzs actually sounded better once I removed the stock (cheap) preamp.
  9. icecycle66


    Feb 4, 2009
    I love my EMG HZ pups. But, you aren't going to get a really good funkalicious sound out of them unless you have a bunch of post-pup EQ working. They are a bit mellower than most of the other pups out of EMGs lineup.

    I like to compare their sound to brighter pups like the HZ are a nickle plated cornet while other, hotter pups, are a big belled brass trumpet.
  10. SGD Lutherie

    SGD Lutherie Banned Commercial User

    Aug 21, 2008
    Bloomfield, NJ
    Owner, SGD Music Products
    I have a Mesa 400+ and a Mesa/Eden 4x10 cab. I love it.

    By the way, the HZ pickups are pretty much exactly the same as the CS pickups, same windings and all. If you wire them in parallel (which are how the active pickups are wired internally), and use them with a preamp, they will sound closer to the active CS pickups.
  11. I just bought a Spector with EMG's HZ. The bass sounds great but it might be because it also has an active Spector pre-amp.
  12. Agreed with what has been said. The HZs are good passive pickups. But many of us like the EMG active pups tone and the HZs don't have that.
  13. audiophile21


    Jan 19, 2010
    i have the stilletto studio 4 and i love it, the emgs sound incredible, and as far as mesa boogie amps go, buy one you will be happy with it gaurenteed
  14. Killface


    May 26, 2011
    Alsip IL
    OK what I gots is a stielleto elite 5. I'm pretty sure I misspelled that quite nicely LOL. Schecter has a preamp but I'm not an expert in this so I have no idea how good/nice it sounds. But like I said I want some FUNKY tone out of it so what pups and preamp would y'all say r the best in this department. I was thinking of just replacing the bridge for something brighter but I'm really not that happy with these Hzs.

    I have my bass set flat with the treble up and favoring my bridge pup for funk reasons. My problem with these Hz is they don't sound that clear to me when I do a double or triple its hard to hear the space between down up pluck. Its not making me happy is this due to crappy tone circuit? It sounds just fine not plugged in lol
  15. Killface


    May 26, 2011
    Alsip IL
    I don't prefer active or passive I prefer funky LOL I know my schecter doesent have the pups set up that great for this due to the bridge pup being real close to the bridge I'd like it to be a lil farther away. I'm not that experienced with the electrical aspect of guitars but most of the funk players I like use vintage fender jazzes those r passive and have funk for days.
  16. Killface


    May 26, 2011
    Alsip IL
    Can u get a funky tone out of the specter? Is it USA made? I think the euro and Asian ones have a different tone circuit. I'm thinking about ordering a custom RXT. I think that's the model name, it looks like a cross between a tele and a les Paul. I'm thinking I only want one pup tho and I don't think its gunna be a Hz.
  17. peledog


    Jul 9, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    I haven't tried active EMGs, but the EMG HZs sound great in my Rebops - both have the Spector TonePump pre.

    I'm installing a new set of passive EMG (P/J) but can't seem to find how to wire them into an old board. This is a 1980s Spector, 2 volumes, 2 tones - it seems I don't need to connect the EMGs to any of the pots - the previous pickups were wired directly into the preamp board. PM me, as I don't want to clutter up this thread. The wiring diagram that came with the EMGs show how to solder the wires to a passive pot.


  18. perhaps this is another "which sounds better" question, only your ears can tell you that my man. As for the HZ's, I think EMG produced them because while they believe that active sounds better, they're going after a larger market by making some passive p-ups. and because some people prefer them and EMG is not stupid. I have them in my 8 string Dean Rhapsody with an active preamp and that think CHUNKS! and the high and low g strings together sound crystal. hard to say if they'll get you that slap you want, I think they're probably more mellow than crazy hot like some have suggested above, so perhaps not the best choice over active, but hard to say because I don't do much slapping on the 8 string. One really nice and smart thing that EMG has done recently is the solder-less connections on all their p-ups. meaning that if you wire in your preamp and new output etc. throw in the Hz's, and if you don't like em you can swap them out for some actives relatively easily as long as you have room in your cavity for the battery... Best of luck getting "that tone" man! Basson!
  19. darkstorm


    Oct 13, 2009
    Ive liked them in the basses that came with them. All of course allready had a 2-3 band active eq in them too. For guitar pups, I like some of the emg hz much better then dimarzio and seymour duncan, some not as much. Thye do have much better selection for guitar humbuckers then they have for bass though.
  20. walterw

    walterw Supportive Fender Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 20, 2009
    i've never heard any better than "meh" from HZ pickups, unlike "real" active EMGs.
    oh really?

    you're referring to the full-on soapbars, obviously. i'll have to try that.

    (although, doesn't the internal EMG preamp do a good bit of boosting and signal-shaping quite apart from what a typical onboard EQ does?)