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Tech21/Bomb Factory: SansAmp PSA-1 Plug-in

SansAmp PSA-1 plug-in for Pro Tools: $499.00 at sansamp online store

Bomb Factory SansAmp plug-in:

synthandsound.com - "The SansAmpTM PSA-1 provides the widest range of amplifier, harmonic generation, cabinet simulation and equalization tone shaping options available. It appears on literally thousands of recordings, used on everything from guitar and bass to drums and harmonica. All 49 original SansAmp presets--featuring Marshall®, Mesa Boogie®, Hiwatt®, Fender® Lead, Rhythm and Bass; and Ampeg SVT® sounds--faithfully and authentically recreated. Explore dozens of new presets contributed by well-known artists and producers, then create your own unique tone."

official product page - "The SansAmp PSA-1 [plug-in] provides the widest range of amplifier, harmonic generation, cabinet simulation and equalization tone shaping options available. It appears on literally thousands of recordings, used on everything from guitar and bass to drums and harmonica. All 49 original SansAmp presets--featuring Marshall®, Mesa Boogie®, Hiwatt®, Fender® Lead, Rhythm and Bass; and Ampeg SVT® sounds--faithfully and authentically recreated. Explore dozens of new presets contributed by well-known artists and producers, then create your own unique tone.

Names of sample settings are intended for descriptive purposes only and should not be construed as an endorsement or affiliation with any companies, products, song titles, or artists named. Co-developed with Tech 21, the SansAmp PSA-1 [plug-in] captures every sonic subtlety of the original.

SansAmpTM PSA-1 delivers a warehouse full of great sounding tube amp rigs.

TDM, AudioSuite, Real-Time AudioSuite and MAS systems fully supported.

Q: I already have a copy of Amp Farm. Why would I want the SansAmp plug-in?

They're totally different animals. Amp Farm emulates a handful of guitar amplifiers. But SansAmp works as a "distortion toolkit" allowing you to create a tremendous variety of distortion sounds. Use it anywhere there's any type of amplifier stage in the signal path: in a mic preamp, an overloaded EQ, a Leslie speaker amp--you get the idea!

In addition to providing more than 50 (!) amplifier models, the SansAmp panel controls allow you to craft any type of distortion sound you desire. Basically, Amp Farm makes it really easy to get the guitar sounds it supports, but SansAmp gives you more flexibility in tailoring existing distortion sounds and creating new ones for a variety of pro audio uses.

See our Interview with Tchad Blake (1999 Grammy® winner for Best Engineered Album) for info on how he uses SansAmp.

Interview with Tchad Blake - "During a recent soiree at The Bomb Factory Recording Studios we were fortunate to speak with Tchad Blake, 1999 Grammy® Award winner for Best Engineered Album. While nibbling on strawberries and chocolates, Tchad shared some of his SansAmp secrets:

Bomb Factory: How did you discover SansAmp?

Tchad Blake: I saw the prototype at Guitar Center. They had it behind the counter, mounted on a huge plastic sheet so people wouldn't try to steal it. I tried it out and talked Andrew at Tech 21 into letting me borrow it. I brought it into the studio and hooked it up immediately.

How did you use it?

We were working on bass that day so I gave it a shot. I haven't used a bass amp since.

And it just stopped there, right?

[Laughs] I've got every version, four or five of the original SansAmp Classic. I've used it on flute, sax, percussion, a ton of keyboard stuff.

When you were recording the Ron Sexsmith record, I noticed a half dozen scattered atop the meter bridge. I use them on sends during tracking and mixdown. After bass, drums are the most common thing I use it on. Listen to the Soul Coughing "Ruby Vroom" LP--the drum and bass sound, that's SansAmp. In fact, there are no amps used at all on that record.

And your work with Los Lobos?

On Kiko and Colossal Head, I don't think there's a single drum track that doesn't have SansAmp mixed in. It's on 50% of the instruments in one way or another on those recordings.

Okay, I confess. I bribed Courtney from the Dandy Warhols with unspeakables in order to find out how you got that drum sound. Do you want to say it or should I?

Well, if the secret's out--try throwing it out of phase on the kick. It drops the kick drum down an octave and you get a really weird tapery top. It does some really strange, amazing things.

Editor's note: Our marketing department snagged this and SansAmp'ed it to death. As a result, I feel compelled to mention that Tchad Blake is one of the most innovative thinkers in studio engineering today, and his work merits the close attention of anyone trying to learn new techniques in recording."

PSA-1 unofficial home page (not software)


Guitar World review of Bomb Factory SansAmp PSA-1 - "In last month’s Audio File, we checked out the Line 6 Amp Farm plug-in for Pro Tools. This month we look at another ultra-cool plug-in package designed both for Pro Tools and the newer, low-cost Digi 001 system: the SansAmp PSA-1 from Bomb Factory. The company’s name sums up this product—it really is the bomb. Everything about it is cool, from the software’s metal CD case to the onscreen displays, which appear to be high-resolution photographs of the actual devices that are modeled, complete with nicks, dents and moving shadows." local archive available

h-c announce - "Tech 21's SansAmp (TM) PSA-1 [hardware] now supported by Mark of the Unicorn's UNISYN Software. January 1, 1995 -- Tech 21's SansAmp PSA-1 is supported by Mark of the Unicorn's UNISYN universal editor/librarian program for Macintosh and Windows. Allows SansAmp PSA-1 owners to use a personal computer to access patches and control all parameters from their computer. Gives users more space to store custom presets, and will let you search a library of patches by keywords. New sounds can easily be created using a "Randomize" function, or use a "Blend and Mingle" function to "morph" between existing patches.


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