The Eventide H910 Harmonizer is one of my favorite studio ‘tricks’. Well, I’m in good company, since this unique combination of pitch shifting, modulation and delay has been used by countless producers and artists (either in hardware or plug-in form).
The original H910 (did you know it was named after a Beatles tune, “One After 909”?) was launched in 1975 and quickly made its way into recording studios around the world. Tony Visconti famously described the H910 to David Bowie and Brian Eno: “It fucks with the fabric of time!”
Visconti used the H910 while recording Bowie’s “Low,” where it was used to create a snare drum sound that descended downwards, with the amount of pitch bend determined by how hard the drummer hit the snare
The H910’s analog sound is unique owing to the fact that it predates the availability of even simple microprocessors or analog-to-digital converters (resulting in an imperfect yet charming early digital sound, with plenty of character!).
The H910 plug-in was modeled after every section of the analog signal chain to recreate the unique sonic characteristics of the original.
The good news is that the plug-in is now for the first time available unbundled, with several enhancements AND on sale for only $99 until July 31, 2016 (MSRP $249).
What can you do with the H910?
Try it on everything! Seriously, the H910 can work its magic to spread guitars (ask Eddie Van Halen about that!), fatten snares and apply subtle, organic de-tuning to synths. Add harmonies or slapback delays to vocals. Create insane mechanical sounds, drone effects or robot language using self-oscillation, delay and anti-feedback. Oh, Kraftwerk used an H910 as well, are you surprised?
The plugin version also contains the H910 Dual Harmonizer which recreates the popular technique of running two H910 units in parallel to create lush doubling and other interesting effects such as stereo-widening and cross-feedback.
- NEW Keyboard and MIDI mapping – With the H910 plug-in you can easily use MIDI to control pitch and harmonization in real-time
- NEW Envelope Follower – Slightly (or massively) vary the pitch to create new sounds.
- NEW OUT2 Delay Group adds inspiring attributes to your sound.
- Over 100 Presets including artist presets by Joe Chiccarelli (U2, Elton John), Roy Hendrickson (Frank Sinatra, Miles Davis), Robin Finck (Nine Inch Nails), Chris Carter (Throbbing Gristle, Chris & Cosey), Sasha & Dave Gardner, and The Butcher Bros. (John Lennon, Bob Dylan).
- True analog modeling of highly nonlinear electronics for faithful reproduction of the H910’s original juiciness and grit.
- Perform perfect pitch changes. Control them manually, via MIDI or with Anti-Feedback.
- Anti-Feedback modulates the pitch around unity for a subtle or wild effect.
- Optional “glitching” from the original hardware helps you create unpredictable sounds as it alters pitch.
- Modify pitch by musical intervals to harmonize vocals or solo instruments.
- Delay rhythms and melodies to create everything from slapback echoes to feedback chaos.
- Create colorful, unique sound effects and drones through self-oscillation.
- Individually control delay outputs and dry/wet mix.
- Mix Lock allows for scrolling through presets or settings while keeping the dry/wet mix constant.
- BONUS: Includes H910 Dual Plug-in
In this video, electronic musician and multi-media artist, Laurie Anderson, discusses using the H910 Harmonizer. Worth watching, also because you may learn a thing or two about the history of glitch.
Customers who already own Anthology X or subscribe to Ensemble can update their versions at no cost.
Visit the plugin page for more information.
Not a plugin fan?
If you’re a hardware kind of guy (or girl) and you’re looking to recreate the H910 experience (without heading to eBay for a vintage unit), you should check out Eventide’s pedals like the PitchFactor – with plenty of hands-on controls – and our beloved H9.
Needless to say, both these stompboxes go well beyond emulating the H910 and just sound amazing (on synths as well as on guitars!).
DISCLOSURE: Our posts may contain affiliate links, meaning when you click the links and make a purchase, we receive a commission.