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True or False: You can't use EMGs without an EMG Pre

Discussion in 'Pickups & Electronics [BG]' started by rojo412, Mar 7, 2003.


  1. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Okay, so I like EMGs. But they seem very... I don't know... proprietary? They can only use their own preamps? I don't exactly know how or why, but they claim (or someone did)that the real preamp is built into the pickup itself. And the control setup is more of a remote or something? (And I mean preamps, not a tone knob, for those who are going to say it!)

    So what do you do if you like the clear, clean snappiness of an EMG... but would like active/passive operation, use of a Demeter or Aguilar (or others, please name them) preamp, or want to experiment with phase and parallel and other things? What pickups are capable of the snappy tone of an EMG with passive capability? (No barts, thanks. They make me ill... and not in a good Beastie Boy way.)

    Just wondering, I'm quite bored and have a thirst for product knowlege.
     
  2. I would be unsure given the output levels, but I'd imagine that you'd be fine given that you don't get super-low output when using EMG preamps with passive pickups.
     
  3. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    I put a BTC CONTROL into a Pbass and a Warwick, both having an EMG pickup. The P used to have a Lace sensor. The controls do so little that you barely notice it. That made me lose faith in the CONTROL, but the SYSTEM (vol and pan included) worked exactly like it should.

    What made me ponder this was the thought of spec'ing a MPG bass. They offer the full EMG shizzle, but I like the Demeter idea (mmmm... switches). I also like the Aguilar OPBBPBBOPP-3 preamp after looking at the available wiring options. Never heard them, but I like adjustability in any case.

    So if you dislike barts for a million reasons and you've never heard anything mindblowing coming from a SD, what does one do?
     
  4. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    EMG's can be used with other preamps. I've used EMG's with Aguilar preamp multiple times. Sadowsky 24 fret 5's used to use EMG with the Sadowsky preamp.EMG's cannot be used passive & they need 25K pots if you use them with no preamp.

    I'm not familiar with the Demeter, but I'm assuming you can use it with that also.
     
  5. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    And they work well that way? All you need is to create the battery loop with it?
     
  6. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    There is already a preamp integrated in EMG pickups.
    If they're not powered, they don't work.

    You can choose a non-EMG EQ system to run after it, but you can't use EMGs passive, because they simply don't work.
     
  7. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    :confused: Huh? I'll use this diagram as an example & hope I don't confuse us all. :D
    <img src="http://aguilaramp.com/newsite/images2/diagrams/OBP-1-with-two-volume-pots0.jpg">
    You would wire the EMG's like this BUT the red wires from the pickups go together with the red wire from the preamp & the red wire from the battery clip.
     
  8. rojo412

    rojo412 MARK IT ZERO! Supporting Member

    Feb 26, 2000
    Cleveland, OH.
    Well, maybe I'm the only one that thinks about it that way, but when I wire up the preamp inside of a bass, I do all of the non-active stuff first (pickups to blend, blend-vol, vol-pre, etc) and then do what attaches to a battery clip last and it seems sorta like a loop. It always seemed like it in my head. WHATEVER!
    Thanks for the pic, it helped. You don't by chance have an OBP-3 for sale as well, do you, Nino?

    EDIT: found info I needed.

    New question: Where do you find these pots that Aguilars use? Do they come with them?
    If I chose to use the system, I have 2 options to consider:
    1) Stacked Mid/Mid Freq pot (which would be a 50/500k pot... does it exist?), stacked BT, blend, vol or
    2) Mid/Mid freq push/pull (50k p/p exist?), BT, vol, blend. Any advantages for one or the other (aside from adjustability)?