If you are an aspiring metal musician or quite a sensation in the genre, you are always looking for ways to improve the quality of your guitar sounds. Guitar sounds can be a source of great music or the wails of a banshee and it all depends on how you treat your guitar, apart from your skill with it of course. One of the ways you can improve the output quality of the sound from a guitar is to add a pickup to it. Pickups can be active or passive based on the kind of preamp they use. When it comes to selecting the right pickup for your band, it’s important to understand what you are looking for. Check out our buying guide for passive pickups at the bottom. We have compiled a list of the best passive pickups for Metal to make it easy for you.
If you understand the roots of death metal, you know how important the intensity of sound is. This pickup by EMG comes with strong magnets and close-knit aperture coils to provide detail in intensity along with some great sustain in cut and fluid.
It is mostly used in the bridge positions but you’ll find no problem using it in both neck and bridge positions. It will help you sail through the densest mixes without any worries and the resulting sound is just amazing.
We recommend pairing it with a classic 81/85 setup or the 81/60 combo.
The best passive pickups for metal by DiMarzio has a clean and streamlined tone that’s almost voice-like. It blends well with the notes when struck and the output is heavenly. If you like some warm music and want to play free, this will work well for you.
This is not for the faint-hearted though. It’s made for the shrieking and wailing school of thought in metal and recreates the magical depth of original metal music.
There’s a hint of modernity in it with the latest potting made tight for superior quality. The wires are winded with consistency to make sure that it eliminates all the microphonics that are pretty common in these pickups.
If the balance in sound matters to you, this best passive pickups for metal will help you attain the right balance between bass and treble with vicious accuracy.
Your needs as a metal guitarist are met with ferocious effectiveness. The tones give you a distortion to push midst and other aggressive saturation away. Built with hands, this pickup supports a 6-string, 7string, and 8-string mount with bare coils.
It also has a 4-conductor lead wire for wiring options and a vacuum wax for a noise-free operation.
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This pickup by Seymour Duncan is designed for those of you who fall into the rather darker sides of rock music. And it’s not just the colour.
When you add these best passive pickups for metal at the bridge, it provides you with the right aggression in sound with just enough grime. The resulting distortion would be crushing and the sounds you make will blow your mind.
If you prefer to have neat, balanced, and clear music coming out of your strings, you’d find these best passive pickups for metal to be extremely useful.
It’s so good with the tone – balanced with the right bass, mids, and highs. The magnets, with the wound coils within, are shielded to eliminate any noise that disrupts the quality of sound.
It works best at the bridge position, providing excellent response and harmonics with a wide range.
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This pickup is most suitable for the Gibson Epiphone Les Paul guitars. It is designed to let you have the pleasure of warm sounds with more power output for more crunch.
Made with excellent quality copper and hard plastic, this best Humbucker Pickup for Les paul is of superior quality and measures well against others in its price range. Designed for rock, this pickup works its magic with the strings to give you the best sound in a balanced way.
This passive pickup from MXR gives you amazing riff power for some epic metal you’d like to play. The high gains that you get with it will power your guitar strokes to hell you unleash true metal.
Any unwanted noise will be knocked out using the built-in noise gate while adding high-definition tightness to your metal riffs.
It is a compact & best pickup that lets you make great music without any hassles and bring out the true potential of your guitars.
This passive pickup from Alnico & Ceramic has a premium music sense. It enables you to play full chords with a superior voice. It also lets you perform smooth solos with your guitar.
With this one, you’ll not face any quality loss no matter the length of your guitar strings. Experience a much better volume control that’s smooth and allows you to bring amazing music from your guitar.
It also allows you to play well at low levels as well.
If you lean towards a more-treble, less-bass end of the spectrum, you are bound to like this pickup from Ascendas. In the bridge position especially, it tends to provide higher frequencies.
The smooth and clear sound that comes out of this pickup works pretty well with some overdrive. The sound is pretty warm at all volumes and pickup selections, resulting in a far better effort at rock music.
Moreover, the built quality is unquestionable and provides longevity to the product with no loss in its quality of sound.
What are the best passive pickups for metal?
Some of the best passive pickups for metal are manufactured by Seymour Duncan, EMG, and DiMarzio.
Are active pickups better for metal?
When it comes to higher outputs, active pickups are better but passive pickups are more versatile and provide more options in tone due to the higher frequency range.
Are single coil pickups good for metal?
A lot of the musicians in metal prefer single-coil pickups for their bright and crisp tones. With the right amp, single-coil pickups can provide a classic sound that’s true to metal
Are EMG 81 85 pickups good?
EMG 81 and 85 have an amazing punch to them and have a hard chunky sound that makes for great metal music.
Are active pickups louder than passive?
Active pickups start with a low sound, picking up after a preamp boosts it. That’s why they are louder than passive pickups. But due to the same reason, active pickups end up with less of a range than passive pickups.
Are humbucker pickups good for metal?
Humbucker pickups are preferred by metal players due to the warmth that it provides to the music resulting in a crunchy and grainy sound.
What guitar is best for metal?
Guitars manufactured by the Gibson or the Fender are great choices for playing rock music or metal.
What are active pickups?
The pickups that incorporate an active preamp in their systems are known as active pickups. Although they also use coils of wire, they have far fewer wires than passive pickups.
Can you replace active pickups with passive pickups?
Although it takes some rewiring from the scratch, the switch from an active to passive switch can be made. You would need to learn your way around the wires.
Buying guide for buying the best passive pickups for metal:
In order to buy the best passive pickup for your guitar, it’s important to learn what to look for. When you are buying a passive pickup for metal, you would need to look at the following parameters in choosing the one that fits your needs:
- What you prefer: There are two kinds of output in a pickup – higher output and lower output. While the former is for making heavily distorted sounds, the latter enables cleaner and dynamic sounds.
- Choose your external tone influence: The tones in your guitar will help you choose the right tone influence for your pickup. They need to align with the best results.
- Choose what fits: Choose a pickup that actually fits into your guitar and wouldn’t need you to make holes in it.