High output passive HBs?

which one?


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diogoguitar

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just genuinely interested why the D Activator (regular) is more popular than the D Activator X? Is that looks or the sound?
 

Mura

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ARB Knock Rail & Song Rail.

These pickups are made by a Russian manufacturer called ARB Pickups, and I have been using them since I ordered one for 8 strings in March this year.

They are passive humbuckers with neodymium magnets, and sound like SD EMTY Blackouts when connected in series, and like fishman abasi's voice3 when split.

It is a minor manufacturer and may be difficult to obtain due to the international situation, but if you are interested, please contact ARB.
 

diogoguitar

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To my ears the regular one sounds better in tests like this:


Alright, I pulled the trigger on the D-Activator (not X).
it was a bit of an impulse purchase, but so many people say good things about it lol
I watched quite a few of the video reviews. I was very on the fence between the X and the regular... I think the regular has some kind of vintage vibe to it compared to the X... so I pulled the trigger
 

Lemonbaby

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BKP aftertmath is hands down the best ive ever used passive or active. Is it worth double the price of a d activator though? no
I stopped buying BKPs after Brexit. Prices have gone through the roof, a 6 string Aftermath set costs around 320 Euros these days. And then there's another ~20% on top for the EU import, makes a total of almost 400 Euros. :ugh:
 

Harry

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just genuinely interested why the D Activator (regular) is more popular than the D Activator X? Is that looks or the sound?

Never tried one IRL admittedly, but similar to what was said above the regular seems to just sound better in every single comparison I've heard.
The X model also has more output, which is totally unnecessary unless you're trying to drive the front end of a JCM 800 2203 or something like that with only moderate amounts of gain, the non-X already has as much output as 99% guitarists could possibly ever need and want from a pickup.
Good choice on purchasing the D Activator. I have the 7 string set in one of my guitars and not only does it excel at high gain, but I found the middle/both on position sounds really nice for cleans, almost this single coil-ish quality to it that I just love.
 

dorqus

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I put Seymour Duncan Distortions (Mayhem Set) in my Gibson SG and they are great. I watched so many videos, listened to pickup comparisons, spoke to folks at SD and Dimarzio. Decided on the SD Distortions and I'm very happy with them. Of course this is all very subjective...
 

Neon_Knight_

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You ain't kidding!
I'm really not!

My favourite bridge pickups include D Activator, Black Winter, Evolution & Super Distortion. I find Tone Zone (375mV) and PAF Pro (300mV) a bit weak, as I like the pickup to hit the amp hard without using a boost (which introduces unnecessary noise).

D Activator & Super 2 are my favourite neck pickups. Many of the popular "medium-high" output neck pickups (e.g. Air Norton) sound weak, dark and tame ime.
 

zjb7777

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Alright, I pulled the trigger on the D-Activator (not X).
it was a bit of an impulse purchase, but so many people say good things about it lol
I watched quite a few of the video reviews. I was very on the fence between the X and the regular... I think the regular has some kind of vintage vibe to it compared to the X... so I pulled the trigger
D Activator is going to fit what you're looking for perfectly. One of DiMarzio's most versatile 6 string pickups for metal.

E Standard thrash and hair metal? You got it. Drop C Metalcore? Absolutely! Drop B Industrial? Of course! Drop G Djent? It does.

My favorite bridge pickup is the Duncan Custom, but I've never had a pickup that sounds great doing everything like the D Activator.
 

Sir_Shreddington

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I love aftermaths, and have only enjoyed the way they sound in every guitar I've put them in. I think the black winters are a solid choice too. I haven't used them but they are supposed to be just a tweaked Duncan distortion, and my experience with distortions were really positive. They are also pretty transparent to my ears.

If you can spring the coin for aftermaths, I totally would. They are some of my favorite pickups.
 

diogoguitar

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I love aftermaths, and have only enjoyed the way they sound in every guitar I've put them in. I think the black winters are a solid choice too. I haven't used them but they are supposed to be just a tweaked Duncan distortion, and my experience with distortions were really positive. They are also pretty transparent to my ears.

If you can spring the coin for aftermaths, I totally would. They are some of my favorite pickups.
Thank you for your recommendation! I'm a fan of Bare Knuckles... I have 3 sets of them... (for other purposes) but I bought them before the 2021 price hikes, all of them for under $300 a set

I saw some price ups and downs... something like $240--> 260--> 300 --> 380 --> 305 (current)
I inquired about the price fluctuation and they mentioned they price according to the demand. I guess I'll wait for things to calm down a bit.

I just purchased the D-Activators for <$200 ...
 

Matt08642

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I'm really not!

My favourite bridge pickups include D Activator, Black Winter, Evolution & Super Distortion. I find Tone Zone (375mV) and PAF Pro (300mV) a bit weak, as I like the pickup to hit the amp hard without using a boost (which introduces unnecessary noise).

D Activator & Super 2 are my favourite neck pickups. Many of the popular "medium-high" output neck pickups (e.g. Air Norton) sound weak, dark and tame ime.

I ordered an Air Norton for my RG since I've never played one and I'm on a Dream Theater kick, but I'm excited to test it against my DiMarzio/IBZ neck pickup in another RG, which according to DiMarzio sounds similar to a Super 2. I suppose the AN might match the Steve's Special I'm putting in the bridge better than a Super 2 might.
 

Esp Griffyn

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For thrash and 80s hair I wouldn't use a high output pickup, I'd go more medium and let the amp do the work.

Definitely don't get an X2N. I love Dimarzio, but those things are trash. I put an X2N7 in my Ibanez K-7 and it is just so harsh and spiky. It's fatiguing to listen to, it just has so much gain, more than you could ever need. My K-7 is due a recommissioning and that pickup will be coming out and the original PAF7 will be going back in.
 


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