owner`s manual
*Operable with phantom power supply, minimum 24V DC regulated, however, 48V DC regulated is
recommended in order to illuminate LED.
*Utilizes standard 9V alkaline battery (not included).To install, simply remove door cover. (NOTE:
The Input activates battery.To conserve energy, unplug when not in use.) Power Consumption:
approx. 5mA.
*USE DC POWER SUPPLY ONLY! Failure to do so may damage the
unit and void warranty. DC Power Supply Specifications:
-9V DC regulated or unregulated, 100mA minimum;
-2.1mm female plug, center negative (-).
Optional factory power supply is available:Tech 21 Model #DC2.
* Attempting to repair unit is not recommended and may void warranty.
* Missing or altered serial numbers automatically void warranty. For your own protection: be sure
serial number labels on the unit’s back plate and exterior box are intact, and return your warranty
registration card.
warrants unit to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for one (1) year from date of
purchase to the original purchaser and is not transferable.Warranty does not include damage resulting from accident, misuse, abuse, alteration, or incorrect current or voltage. If unit becomes defective
within warranty period,Tech 21 will elect to repair or replace it at no cost. After expiration,Tech 21
will repair unit for a fee.
ALL REPAIRS for residents of U.S. and Canada: Call Tech 21 for Return Authorization Number.
Manufacturer will not accept packages without prior authorization, pre-paid freight (UPS preferred)
and proper insurance.
Contact Tech 21 weekdays from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, EST.
T: 973-777-6996
E: info@tech21nyc.com
W: www.tech21nyc.com
© 2005
Tech 21, the Company
Tech 21 was formed by a guitarist possessing the unusual combination of a trained ear and electronics
expertise. In 1989, B. Andrew Barta incorporated Tech 21 and made his unique invention commercially
available to players and studios around the world. His highly-acclaimed SansAmp™ pioneered Tube
Amplifier Emulation in professional applications for recording direct and performing live, and created an
entirely new category of signal processing.While there have since been many entries into this niche,
SansAmp continues to maintain its reputation as the industry standard.
After developing a full line of SansAmp models,Tech 21 expanded its offerings to include effect pedals;
a compact, battery operable MIDI footcontroller, the MIDI Mouse; as well as “traditional” style amplifiers. Each product is thoughtfully and respectfully designed by Andrew himself with the player in mind.
Our goal is to provide you with flexible, versatile tools to cultivate, control, refine and redefine your
own individual sound.Tech 21 takes great pride in delivering consistent professional quality sound, studio to studio, club to club, arena to arena.
Tech 21 redefined the term “direct box” with the development of SansAmp™ Tube Amplifier Emulation
technology. For recording and live performances, our exclusive, 100% analog circuitry delivers the
sound of a miked-up tube amp in a convenient direct box format.
SansAmp Para Driver DI offers detailed tone shaping for any signal source.The proprietary circuitry
(engaged via the Blend control) eliminates the unnatural harmonics of piezo pickups. SansAmp Para
Driver DI gives your instrument a natural warmth and presence as if you were miking it through a tube
SansAmp Para Driver DI functions as a pre-amp, a stomp box, and as a standard direct box with EQ
(when the Blend control is at minimum). It also functions solely as a standard transparent direct box
(when in bypass) to convert
the instrument signal to a low impedance balanced output.This prevents signal loss and sound quality
deterioration caused by long cable lengths.When you engage the SansAmp circuitry via the on-board
footswitch, it gives you the sound and responsiveness of a miked-up pro stage rig --direct into a
recording console or P.A. system.You can also simultaneously plug straight into a power amp or conventional amp.
As with each SansAmp model, the controls are designed to give you the
flexibility to achieve your desired sound, be it at home, in a local bistro or on a world tour.
•As a Stomp Box: Run the 1/4” Output into the front input of your amp. For best results, keep
SansAmp Para Driver DI’s Level close to unity gain so as not to overload the amp’s input, which
could yield undesirable distortion.
•As a Pre-Amp: Run the 1/4” Output of SansAmp Para Driver DI directly into the power amp input,
a.k.a. “effects return” (if applicable), of an amp. This will bypass the amp’s tone-coloring pre-amp
section and defeat the amp’s master volume. So, be sure your instrument’s volume is off,
BEFORE you turn on the amp. If a power amp input is not available, use the cleanest channel with
the amp’s EQ flat and maximum headroom. For best results, keep the Level of SansAmp Para Driver
DI close to unity gain to not overload the amp’s input (which could yield undesirable distortion).
TO DRIVE A POWER AMP: Run the 1/4” Output or XLR Output to the corresponding input of
a power amp, and adjust your stage volume with the Level control of SansAmp Para Driver DI. NOTE:
When running into the power amp input of an amp or a power amp alone, make sure the Output Level
Switch is set to Line and adjust the Level as needed. If you are so inclined, this is the time to crank it --as
long as the power amp volume is close to or at max.
Plug the XLR or 1/4” Output directly into the input of a mixer/recorder.Work with the input trim control on the mixer/recorder and be sure not to overload its input. If Level is below 12 o’clock and it is
overloading the board, set the Output Level switch to Instrument. Additionally, bear in mind that fullrange systems yield a wide frequency response.Therefore, we suggest you start with the EQ levels at
12 o’clock and then increase/decrease to taste.
WITH INSTRUMENTS: Use with acoustic, electric and bass guitars, and upright bass, as well as keyboards, violin, drums, sax, harmonica, and even vocals. But don’t stop here.Try your own experimentation.
-Insert SansAmp Para Driver DI in your mixing board and use it as an outboard processor to warm up a
particular channel.
-Put direct in-line from the microphone to the mixer.
-Enhance existing tracks in the mix-down process.
-Use as a speaker/mic simulator to record your favorite effects/stomp boxes directly (see Sample Settings).
DRIVE: adjusts the overall amount of gain and overdrive, similar to when the output section of a tube amp
is being pushed.
BASS & TREBLE: These active tone controls cut or boost ±12dB from unity gain at 12 o’clock. Bass is
80 Hz.Treble is 3.2kHz.
Sweepable, semi-parametric EQ controls range from 170 Hz to 3.5 kHz, ±16dB, respectively.With Mid Shift,
you can select the center frequency of the mid-range control (MID), enabling you to notch out specific frequencies that may be causing your acoustic guitar to feed back. To find the feedback frequency of your guitar, set MID at max (5 o’clock).Turn Mid Shift to the feedback point and leave it there. Cut MID until feedback stops. However, you can achieve various unique sounds by boosting MID and selecting different frequencies with Mid Shift --such as the “Money for Nothing” sample setting. Note: If you set Mid Shift at 1kHz, MID
operates as a traditional mid-range control.
BLEND allows you to blend the direct instrument signal with SansAmp Tube/Microphone Emulation circuitry. In most cases, you will probably have this set at maximum (100% SansAmp). If you should want to hear
some of the distinct timbre of a piezo pickup, or reduce the amount of “compression,” you can simply adjust
accordingly by turning the Blend control counter clockwise.
At minimum, the SansAmp circuitry is bypassed. However, all the other controls remain active.The unit then
functions as a standard DI with EQ.
LEVEL adjusts the output level of both the 1/4” and XLR outputs.
Follow Standard Audio Procedure to avoid unwanted and potentially speaker-damaging “pops” when
connecting or disconnecting any equipment:
Always mute mixing board and/or turn down amp volume
BEFORE plugging or unplugging!
INPUT: 1/4”, 4.7megOhm, instrument level. Switches battery power on/off.To avoid battery drain, unplug
when not in use. (DON’T FORGET TO MUTE!)
PARALLEL OUTPUT: 1/4” unbalanced direct output is “hard-wired” to the Input jack. Instrument signal passes through, UNEFFECTED, to the input of your stage amplification system. NOTE:The impedance of
the 1/4” Input will change and assume the impedance of the equipment the Parallel Output is connected to. If
that equipment has a lower impedance (i.e., vintage effects, tuners, etc.), it will cause the signal to diminish.To
avoid signal degradation, we recommend not using the Parallel Output when a high impedance is required (for
instance, for piezos).
BALANCED XLR OUTPUT: Balanced 600-Ohm low Z output. Sends effected or uneffected signal
to mixing console/recorder, depending on the orientation of the Footswitch.
XLR Output Level Switch: -20dB pad to match the output to equipment with different input level
requirements. In line level position, the output is 0dB. In instrument level position, the output is -20dB.
1/4” OUTPUT: Unbalanced 1KOhm low Z output. Sends effected or uneffected signal to amp rig or
power amp, as per the orientation of the Footswitch.
1/4” Output Level Switch: +10dB boost to match the output to equipment with different input
level requirements. In instrument level position, the output is -10dB. In line level position, the output is
FOOTSWITCH, with corresponding LED indicator: Engages/disengages the circuitry. Active,
LED will be on.Tonality and gain structure are affected as determined by the setting of the controls.
Delivers effected signal through XLR Output and 1/4” Output. Inactive, LED is off. SansAmp Para Driver
DI functions an an active transparent direct box and does not sonically alter the instrument signal.
Allows you to “tap into” the power of a suitably equipped mixer, which, today, most are. As the 3-conductor XLR sends the audio signal to the input of a mixer, the mixer sends voltage back to the unit via
the same 3 wires, eliminating the need for an external power supply. Consult your mixer’s owner’s manual for set-up instructions. For live and studio use, let the engineer know your SansAmp Para Driver DI
is phantom power operable.
PHANTOM & GROUND CONNECT SWITCH: When engaged, the ground connects and
unit will accept phantom power through the XLR Output. Disengaged, the ground of your stage system
and other interconnected gear is lifted (isolated) from the ground of the mixing console.
With a mixer only: If you are plugging your instrument into the Para Driver and taking the XLR
Output to a mixer --and do not have any other grounded equipment connected in the setup-you will have to set the switch to the right to connect the ground and engage the phantom power.
With a mixer and amp: If you are going to the mixer via the XLR and using the 1/4” Output or
Parallel Output to feed an amp (with its own AC ground), you should set the switch to the left in
“Ground Lift” mode. If you experience hum and/or buzz with the switch in either position, there is
probably a problem with the AC outlets you are plugging into.
NOTE: If using vintage equipment without proper grounds, take extra care connecting it to modern
grounded equipment.The inadequacies of the ground in vintage gear could result in damaging anything it
is connected to.
NOTE: While operating under phantom power, we recommend keeping a 9V alkaline battery installed
at all times to avoid the previously mentioned “pops” when lifting the ground.
Speaker simulation is an integral part of the SansAmp circuitry. It is specifically designed for a smooth,
even response as would be achieved by a multiply-miked cabinet --without peaks, valleys, and notches
associated with single miking-- and will complement any type of speaker cabinet system.
1) SansAmp Para Driver DI is very responsive. Our controls are unusually sensitive and you
need not set everything at max to get maximum results. For instance, to brighten your sound, try cutting back on the Bass first, rather than automatically boosting Treble all the way up.
Be aware that boosting Treble and Bass increases the high and low frequency content without changing
the overdrive structure. However, boosting the Mid and the Mid Shift controls will increase the amount
of saturation. (Refer to the Sample Setting for Sparkle Electric Guitar.) By taking the time to familiarize
yourself with how the EQ controls interact, you will be able to achieve the proper mix of frequencies
that best suits your needs in any venue.
2) The noise level is exceptionally low. However, it may amplify noise emanating from the input
source.To minimize noise going into SansAmp Para Driver DI, we recommend active electronic instruments have the volume set at unity gain/maximum and tone controls positioned flat. If you need to
boost, do so slowly and sparingly.
3) Compressors or limiters may not be necessary. Our unique
circuitry emulates the warm, natural, gentle compression of tubes.This limits transient peaks for an even
meter reading, so that outboard units typically are not needed.
4) Using effects. One of the key attributes of SansAmp is the responsiveness to the dynamics and
nuances of your playing technique.Therefore, it is best to have your instrument plugged directly into the
SansAmp and place effects after the SansAmp. If, however, you prefer to place an effect before SansAmp,
be sure to set the output level of the effect at unity gain with the output level of the instrument.
®Registered trademarks of their respective companies.
Names of sample settings are intended for descriptive purposes only and
should not be construed as an endorsement or affiliation with the companies or artists named.
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