Raise a gallop in your basslines with Tech 21's Steve Harris SH1 Signature SansAmp

(Image credit: Tech 21)

Tech 21 has unveiled the Steve Harris Signature SH1 SansAmp, which packs the Iron Maiden bassist's legendary tone into one small pedalboard-friendly unit.

Harris is not one to change his rig up. He likes what he likes and knows what works. For him, that means his custom Alectron preamp and vintage Marshall cabinets loaded with EV speakers. And Harris says that Tech 21's Andrew Barta has managed to pack his sound into the SH1.

Tech 21 sent a prototype to Harris when he was touring with his British Lion side-project and he gave it the seal of approval. The SH1 is now a part of his live rig with Iron Maiden.

The SH1 can be used with a bass amp as a preamp or as a stompbox. Alternatively, you can run it into a power amp via a 1/4-inch connector or XLR and use the SH1 to adjust your stage volume, or, if recording, you can plug it direct into the mixer/recorder.

The unit features Tech 21's all-analogue SansAmp technology and has two channel modes with independent gain and level controls. There is a four-band active EQ, offering a very healthy cut/boost of 18dB, while the blend control let's you mix how much of the SansAmp Tube Amplifier Emulation you want with your instrument's dry signal.

There is also a chromatic tuner and a "bite" switch for when you need a little more of of that Steve Harris "clunk and clarity" in your sound. Perhaps if you're onstage and find Eddie staggering towards you.

The SH1's manual also helpfully lists sample settings to nail the tones of Lemmy, Phil Lynott, Geezer Butler, and Cliff Burton – plus tones for Motown, Genesis circa-The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway and Deep Purple during the Highway Star era . . . Wouldn't the latter be Mike Rutherford and Roger Glover? Perhaps that's down to licensing.

Either way, this is a pretty neat unit. See Tech 21 for more details.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.

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