Harmonizer Effect - what it is and how to use it

What is a harmonizer effect - how does it work and how to use it for adding harmonies to vocals or to create interesting special effects. In this video I use the mighty Eventide Harmonizer 910 to maul a drum beat!

Beat Construction


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The simplest explanation as to what a harmonizer is and does is this: let us use a vocal line as an example. The harmonizer will pitch shift the vocals and add it back to the original un-pitched audio to create a two note harmony. Now, imagine what happens when you have multiple vocals running into the harmonizer or to create multiple pitch shifts of the same vocal line and to start stacking one on top of the other pitch shifted vocals. You end up with amazing complex textures. This is as simplistic as it gets.

Well designed harmonizers will have additional processing features to help achieve huge harmonies and to keep everything in tune and in time it even incorporates time-stretching. You can even Pitch the Ratio and apply anti feedback.

Of course, you can use a Harmonizer for its intended task which is to create vocal part harmonies but it can do so much more that it would be criminal not to abuse the process.

Ever wondered how some producers get interesting layered vocal effects out of single vocal lines? The Harmonizer is their weapon of choice and none more so than the Eventide H910 Harmonizer.

Eventide H910 Dual Harmonizer

The H910 Harmonizer was the world’s first digital effects processor. With its unique combinations of pitch shifting, modulation and delay, the H910 soon proved to be a weapon! Countless hit records from many iconic artistes feature the delights of the 910 Harmonizer.

The H910 plugin is a faithful recreation of the original hardware. However, Eventide have gone one better and afforded us a single plugin that runs two harmonizers in parallel. This allows for some manic sonic mangling!

You can use the H910’s pitch changing ability to create specific musical intervals and harmonies, spread guitars, fatten snares, apply subtle organic de-tuning to synths or add slap-back delays to vocals. At extreme settings, you can create unheard-of mechanical sounds and drone effects using self-oscillation, delay, and anti-feedback.

In the video I explain what a harmonizer is, how it works and how to use it. I use a drum beat sequence and run it through the Eventide H910 Dual Harmonizer. I explain how to use the 910 to process crazy drum beat textures making sure to explain how the different settings yield different results.

Plugin used in this video:

Eventide H910 Harmonizer

Topics covered in this video are:

  • What is it, how does it work and when and how to use it
  • Feedback – Anti Feedback
  • Time-Stretching
  • Pitch Shifting
  • Understanding Pitch Ratio
  • Layering Harmonics