Review: Sansamp Bass Driver DI
Positives:Solidly built, great i/o features, great power features, nice tone
Negatives:none to speak of...
As a bass player, I was never one for distortion for live or recording and passed this little gem up quite a few times. Older and wiser, and more studio savvy, I’ve found this little guy to be a great secret weapon for great cutting bass tracks. The Tech21 SansAmp Bass Driver DI has a bunch of great features to help your tracks stick out in a mix (or on stage). With a 1/4″ input and XLR out, the box works great as a standard DI (and allows for clean pass through DI or effected DI) as well as a 1/4″ out to send to your regular gear, the output options on this box are standard but necessary. The drive portion, consisting of a drive (distortion), blend (for mixing wet and dry), bass, treble and presence, can provide the user with a multitude of different sounds. Though there are no “presets” per-se, (you have to manually tweak knobs for different sounds), there is a stomp switch that you can use to turn the effect on and off which is nice so that it can be used as an effect pedal if so desired. From full blown distortion, to a simple tone shaper this box and add that granular level of adjustment to make the bass felt and heard. The DI and 1/4″ outs used together are great in the studio for recording in parallel. So record the clean bass and the distortion at the same time, blend to taste during mix down! Brilliant! Unlike other distortion boxes, this one doesn’t come with that ear splitting harshness that many others do and definitely doesn’t just sound like a fuzz box plugged directly into the board. Another cool feature is that the box can be operated by a 9v battery, an ac adapter OR phantom power from the XLR connection! No real downsides to this little guy, solid all around build, and a damn good tone!