NYC’s Tech21 SansAmp line is welcoming today a new, sleek member to its family: the Steve Harris SH1 Signature SansAmp. The release of the first SansAmp stompbox, which started the amp modeling pedal frenzy, actually dates back to exactly 30 years ago: 1989.
The legendary Iron Maiden singer/guitarist – who actually does a lot more than that in the band – has lent his metallic expertise to help create a device that faithfully emulates his rig of forty years comprising a handmade custom pre-amp feeding vintage Marshall cabs loaded with EV speakers.
The SH-1 features all-analog SansAmp technology, two-channel modes with individual Gain and Level controls, Blend, 4-band active EQ, and a Bite switch to activate a “Steve” boost for extra clank and clarity.
Other features include a chromatic tuner and an XLR Output to go direct to the PA desk or studio board. Rugged all-metal housing measures 7.75”l x 2.5”w x 1.25”h and weighs just 12 oz.
Here’s the video of it!
A true hands-on professional, Steve Harris not only formed Iron Maiden (in 1975!), he writes the bulk
of their songs, plays multiple instruments, mixes recordings, directs and edits both live and production
videos, and sings. As if that wasn’t enough, Steve somehow finds time for British Lion, which he
describes as a side project that’s more mainstream rock than metal.
When it comes to Steve’s rig, surprisingly it has barely changed in almost 40 years. What has never
changed is his handmade custom pre-amp, the “Alectron,” as well as his prized custom vintage
Marshall cabs loaded with EV speakers. While this collaboration began as a solution for touring with
British Lion, as it wasn’t practical to travel with his full rig for smaller venues, the SH1 has earned a
place as a component of his live sound on Iron Maiden’s Legacy of the Beast 2019 tour.
When Tech 21 sent the original prototype of the pedal to Steve while in rehearsal with British Lion, he
had this to say: “The tour is going fantastic. And the reason it’s going fantastic is this little thing here.
It’s unbelievable. [Andrew Barta] is a real boffin [translation: technical expert]. Because he’s managed
to simulate my EV speaker sounds, which I love so much. And it’s in this little box. Whatever he’s
done, he’s made this thing sound like my sound. So, well done, mate.”
Known for his galloping fleet-fingered bass lines, Steve’s distinctive style and tone have, and continue
to be, required reading –whether you’re into metal or not. Like Tech 21’s other signature gear, the SH1
is not just for one single tone or genre. The controls are designed to provide an expansive range of
adjustability so you can dial in a wide spectrum of bass tones as well.
The Steve Harris SH1 features all-analog SansAmp technology, two channel modes with individual
Gain and Level controls, Blend, 4-band active EQ, and a Bite switch to activate a “Steve” boost for
extra clank and clarity. Other features include chromatic tuner and an XLR Output to go direct to the
PA desk or studio board. Rugged all-metal housing measures 7.75”l x 2.5”w x 1.25”h and weighs just