Best Passive Pickups for Metalcore

Metal with passive pickups good idea or perhaps not? Exactly why, of course, it is a great idea! Who gave you the idea that you cannot? We used the intro to make a bit of a point and address the somewhat frequent question asked around the web, and so let us go on to the meaty bit. We chose to take a trip into the world of electronics in an effort to discover the best passive pickups for metal.

The primary criteria we took into account is these pickups are loud enough for metal, and that they’re able to giving you the sonic bit the genre’s built upon. More on that later on, the goods await below.

These’re the recommendations of ours for the four best passive pickups for metal on the market:



The H4 model comes at an affordable and fair price, operating as a classic humbucker pickup. It’s presented as the equivalent of the company’s eighty one Active Pickup, just in the passive department, obviously. It uses a pair of 2 bar loaded coils and the manufacturer’s 5 wire quick connect output that allows some number of wiring combinations.

The product is completely shielded, securing minimum noise and also reduced physical damage. Also included in the mix is a QuikConnect cable, a set of springs and screws.

What makes this particular fella ideal for metal is definitely the strong output, a wide range, raw gain power and top responsiveness. In simpler terms, it is chunky and it’s beefy. In case you’re after a large hard rock or perhaps modern heavy metal sound, this’s the one for you. It is without a doubt among the best passive pickups for metal period.

 DiMarzio DP222

Representing the folks from DiMarzio is the DP222 D Activator X Humbucker pickup. This guy features a very accurate, articulated, and great focused sonic attack based around top of the midrange sonic frequencies. Higher and lower frequencies continue to be present to secure a well rounded output, but it’s the middles in which the Activator really shines through.

Basically, in case you’re searching for the most effective passive magnet for classic heavy of thrash metal, this’s the winning ticket of yours. It may sound fantastic in the roaring gain packed regime, it also offers crisp and clear clean notes when they’re necessary.

As for the other technical details, it’s worth noting that The D Activator X (see full specs) utilizes similar bar pole pieces and overall magnet structure as the X2N model, but it is still an entirely different pickup.

To compare these 2, we are going to note that the output voltage on this particular model is a tad less than on the X2N, while the tuning of the 2 coils lets those higher frequencies to open up but still maintain strong lows and mids in the entire output.

Seymour Duncan Invader

Another company that absolutely deserves a mention is Seymour Duncan. These guys have been associated with several of the all time titans of metal over the years, and they keep the line of theirs of products fresh with constant innovations along with a distinctive method.

The model we opted for right here as a good representative of the metal department is the Invader series. We’re taking a look at a passive mount pickup with black metal covers, a pair of 3 ceramic magnets, overwound coils, and some extra large pole pieces.

The item offers another strong output packed with gain to saturate the tone of yours with a fresh serving of aggression and thump. The listed features allow the product to extend the magnetic boundaries as well as provide you with the feel of real low notes. Basically, in case you play a 7- or perhaps 8 string guitar, these’re perhaps the very best passive pickups for metal on the complete list.

Apart from a reasonable price tag, the product is amazingly flexible and not at all nearly the chug. The fresh notes provided through this product are free and crisp of unwanted crackle, which is ideal for much more progressive players.

Seymour Duncan Black Winter


Speaking of Seymour Duncan, the entry of theirs in the high end price range is designed for extreme metal guitarists. It provides you with a dark tone with a great deal and aggressive distortion of grime and grit across the whole range.
In terms of specs, this pickup uses 3 ceramic bar magnets with wax potted poles to reduce responses at gain that is high. While it is noted for its massive overdrive, it does not sacrifice the clarity of the articulation for the benefit of power. What this means is it is able to deal with fast lead work, and makes it much more versatile than you may expect from a pickup designed for metal. It provides you with the grind and overtones for an excellent punk tone, and rock players of all stripes who prefer depth in the tone of theirs will love the distinctive tone they get from this pup.

The Black Winter pickups are (of course) all black, giving them a clear visual appeal to go with the amazing sound of theirs. The neck and bridge pickups work great in tandem but can additionally be used independently for much more tonal variety. The bridge pickup alone cleans up well. The tone cuts through the mix but without getting tinny or thin, regardless of how big and loud your band is, or perhaps just how much crunch you like on the tone of yours.

Difference Between Passive and active Pickups for Metal

We figured that as a conclusion we address this frequently asked question: the real difference between active and passive guitar pickups.

Thus, both kinds of pickups utilize coils of wire, but the distinction is the fact that active pickups have a lot less of them. Rather, they use an active preamp that’s integrated into the instrument.

This boosts the signal level, EQ and filters, and usually provides the player total control of a three band equalizer. Additionally, active pickups require separate power and incorporate a 9V battery that you’ve to repeatedly replace.

As for specific audio differences, active pickups have higher output and are much less prone to background noise. Passive models on the contrary, have a significantly stronger dynamic range. So it is all a matter of taste, as it usually is in the world of music…

So What Makes perfect Passive Pickups for Metal?

While some criteria is ubiquitous for a range of styles, what passive pickups require even more in the realm of metal is loudness and additional sonic bite. These will allow the instrument of yours to cut through the mix and deliver the boom of metal. When it relates to other criteria, you need to search for a good mid range punch and a rich bass section. Metal is about chunky guitar chops, and thin sound is a huge no no.

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