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ManleyCORE Reference Channel Strip


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Manley CORE

Manley's CORE is an all-in-one, tube channel strip for adding amplification, dynamics management, and frequency control to your studio, while also offering additional coloration for your signals. CORE features several sections of sonic contouring, including compression, EQ, and limiting, but its foundation starts with a fantastic and flexible preamplification section. Capable of supporting any variety of signal, the input section comes equipped with independent balanced XLR inputs for mic and line-level sources as well as a strong direct input, featuring an unbalanced 1/4" jack capable of handling impedances up to 10 MegOhms! While the microphone transformer is the only one affected by the phase inverter control, any input is followed by a fixed 120Hz 1-pole high pass filter meant to clean up any unwanted low end. From there, the CORE provides a highly flexible input level control, supplying up to +40dB or +60dB of gain to mic signals depending on the Low/Hi position while also acting as a variable pad to attenuate hotter signals.

The preamplification stage is followed by Manley's wonderful ELOP compressor found in their fantastic SLAM!, featuring a moderately ranged and variable set of attack and release controls. Easily fixable to meet a number of settings, the compressor sticks to a 3:1 ratio for impactful yet controllable amount of dynamic control before the rest of the signal chain. CORE's preamplification meets its end as it approaches the 12AX7 and 6922 White Follower vacuum tubes for high-voltage amplification. This all-triode design requires a high amount of voltage to both power and run these tubes, which is why Manley drives it with their very own POWER system, thus producing insanely high amounts of headroom. The amplification stage is followed by an insert point at which you can add any line-level gear to modify your signal before continuing down the path.

Manley's EQ section is a versatile yet simple three-band equalizer for carving out your lows, highs, and any specific mid areas that need some extra love. The low and high shelves offer +/-12dB of gain for adding or subtracting oomph and sizzle while the mid band features a fixed bell curve that can boost or carve up to +/-10dB with a sweepable center frequency from 100Hz-1kHz or even 1kHz-10kHz. While the EQ is great for adding simple or drastic lifts and cuts, the following "brickwall" limiter is an FET-based dynamic control for taming final transients and smoothing out your entire signal with a flexible release time. Additional output gain allows you to add up to 4dB or subtract down to 6dB to meet unity measures while still putting out a powerful sound at the main output. If you want to skip the EQ and Limiting section, you can alternatively use the direct output to go directly into the DAW or alternatively process your gear elsewhere before conversion.

Easily monitor and manage your levels via the brightly backlit VU meter, providing you views of the compressor's gain reduction, the direct output level, and the main output level. The Manley CORE provides a fantastic solution for artists, studio engineers, or anyone looking to add a flexible and reliable signal path for creating stellar recordings.

CORE Features

  • Reference channel strip
  • Mono preamp for mic, line, and instrument level signals
  • Mic Pre gain control provides up to +40dB or +50dB whether set to LOW or HI
  • Direct input supports instrument signals with an input impedance rating 10 MegOhms
  • Input Level control acts as a variable pad for louder signals, acting silently
  • Preamp section features switchable mic/line input, +48V phantom power, and cleanup tools such as Phase Invert switch and 120Hz high pass filter
  • ELOP compressor found in Manley VOXBOX, including set 3:1 ratio as well as attack (5-60ms), release (100ms-1.5s), and amount controls
  • Class A, all-triode vacuum tube amplification via one 12AX7 and one 6922 White Follower
  • EQ section includes low (80Hz) and high (12kHz) shelves with +/-12dB as well as a sweepable, mid bell with +/-10dB over a 100Hz-1kHz range or 1kHz-10kHz range
  • Limiter section acts as a fast attack FET "brickwall" with flexible release and an additional +4/-6dB of output gain control
  • Insert before the EQ for additional coloration down the channel
  • Balanced XLR outputs for both direct out and main out
  • Large VU meter can reference compressor gain reduction, direct output level, and main output level
  • Balanced Transformer Coupled XLR Microphone Input Impedance: 1200 Ohms
  • Balanced XLR Line Input Impedance: 10 kOhms
  • Unbalanced 1/4" Direct Input Impedance: 10 Meg Ohm
  • Hi-current drive Direct XLR output Impedance: 50 Ohms
  • Insert Send output impedance: 50 Ohms
  • Insert Return input impedance: 13 kOhms
  • Main Output Impedance: 50 Ohms
  • Direct Output Headroom (referenced to +4 dBv): 31 dB
  • Main Output Headroom (referenced to +4 dBv): 16 dB
  • Dynamic Range: >90 dB
  • Frequency Response: 10 Hz to 20 kHz ±0.5 dB
  • THD & Noise (1kHz @ +4 dBm): 0.02% at Low Gain setting
  • Noise Floor (Gain set to minimum): -70 dB wideband typical
  • Gain via Microphone Input: 40 or 60 dB
  • Gain via Line Input: 20 or 40dB
  • Maximum Gain of EQ & Limiter section: 10 dB
  • Maximum Input Mic input (Low Gain Setting): -5 dBu or 435mV RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Input Mic input (High Gain Setting): -25 dBu or 44 mV RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Input Line input (Low Gain Setting): +13 dBu or 3.5V RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Input Line input (High Gain Setting): -8 dBu or 300mV RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Input Direct input (Low Gain Setting): +24 dBu or 12V RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Input Direct input (High Gain Setting): +17 dBu or 5.5V RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Input Insert return: +20 dBu or 7.8V RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Preamp Output (Insert Send): +35 dBu or 43V RMS @ 0.5% THD
  • Maximum Preamp Output (Insert Send): +22 dBu into 600 Ohms
  • Maximum Main Output: +20 dBu
  • AUTOMUTE warmup delay: 30 Seconds
  • Power consumption: 35 watts
  • Operating mains voltage: 90 to 254 VAC (internal universal supply)
  • Mains Voltage Frequency: 50-60Hz
  • Dimensions: 19" x 3 1/2" x 7" (occupies 2u)
  • Unit Weight: 8.3 lbs.
  • Shipping weight: 11.5 lbs.
Manley CORE Reference Channel Strip Reviews