Stompbox Blog: Tech 21 SansAmp

Stompbox Blog

Welcome to the guitar effects virtual museum. I have been collecting stompboxes for the past few years and wanted to share some thoughts. I will continually add more pics and opinions. Any comments or suggestions are appreciated. Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tech 21 SansAmp

After repairing and modding guitar amplifiers for 10 years B. Andrew Barta decided to put his research and development skills to form his own company. 20 years ago, he created his first direct input device for recording called the SansAmp using all discrete analog circuitry. It wasn't so much a stomp-box but a recording modeler with 8 different character switches used to simulate amplifiers being used in a studio. It was a tweakers dream come true with 4 knobs to control presence drive, amplifier drive, output and high controls. It also had 3 different switches for lead, normal(mid) and bass. His goal was to fool the user into simulating any style of amplifier without all the headaches of close miking, types of tubes, noise and compression. Foreigner used it in recording their next album and the rest is history. When Kurt Cobain showed up with it on stage as a stompbox everyone had to have one. Tech 21 went on to create many more innovative products but the original is an enduring classic. Heck they even re-released it as a "Classic" model and then reintroduced it as the 20th anniversary edition complete with beaten up chassis and flecked-off paint. For more info on this see the website

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