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Manley Labs CORE

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Product Description


Manley Labs is proud to introduce The CORE Reference Channel Strip. Flexible without being intimidating, the CORE’s strength flows from its Class A high-voltage tube micpre and ELOP® Compressor, into its sweepable mid EQ with high and low shelves, and is focused by a fast brick-wall FET limiter.

Building upon its 25-year legacy producing revered recording studio equipment; Manley Labs has distilled its CORE technologies from this lineage. 2014 delivers the Manley CORE, an innovative channel strip that combines Manley’s Greatest Hits with fresh technology. The remarkably intuitive front panel combines musical and forgiving circuitry that allows the musician to concentrate on his performance instead of being lost in a sea of knobs. Ease of use and intelligently chosen operating points make it virtually impossible to cut a bad sounding track!

Manley’s experience and insight working with the industry’s top recording engineers and musicians culminates in the CORE. At this price, there is no other channel-strip with higher headroom or more seductive sound than the CORE. Handcrafted in the USA, built like a tank, built to endure, the epicenter of your recorded art will be the Manley CORE.

The signal enters through our renowned hand-wound MANLEY IRON® input transformer with nickel laminations in a mu-metal can. The tube amplifying stage is the latest implementation of our famous Class A circuit topology found in the VOXBOX® and Manley Dual Mono & Mono Microphone Preamplifiers. This all-triode vacuum tube circuit runs on a regulated 300 Volt B+ supply yielding huge headroom and relentless output drive capability.


48V Phantom power switch
120Hz High Pass Filter switch
Phase Invert switch
Input Attenuator (Variable Pad)
Mic Pre Selectable Gain 40dB or 60dB
Line Amp Selectable Gain 20dB or 40dB

Similar to the DI in the Manley SLAM!®, this all-discrete solid-state circuit with 10 Meg Ohm input impedance is perfect for guitars, bass, keyboards, etc.


Featuring our successful ELOP® technology also found in our famous Manley VOXBOX®
Compressor is uniquely before the Mic Preamp making it virtually impossible to clip
Ratio 3:1
Continuously variable Attack, Release, and Threshold controls
Silent Bypass switch

Low and High Baxandall Shelves (80Hz and 12kHz) with ±12dB range
Sweepable Midrange Bell EQ (100Hz – 1kHz) or (1kHz – 10kHz) with ±10dB range

Fast attack FET “brickwall” limiter
Continuously Variable Threshold and Release controls
Peak Limit LED indicator
10dB range output gain control

Large illuminated analog display
3-way meter-select switch shows Compressor Gain Reduction, Micpre Output Level, and Main Output audio levels.

Balanced XLR Mic Input
Balanced XLR Line Input
Front Panel Direct Instrument 1/4" Input
Insert point between Mic Preamp and EQ/Limiter via ¼” TRS jack
Balanced XLR Direct Output (after Preamp/Compressor section)
Balanced XLR Main Output
Deluxe CNC-machined 1/4" thick faceplate with inlaid laser-engraved inserts adorn the rigid 2U steel chassis – all locally sourced in Southern California.

ALL-TUBE preamplifier audio path using 1 x 12AX7 for gain and 1 x 6922 White Follower
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
Silent conductive plastic INPUT attenuator
Compressor Maximum GAIN REDUCTION: 16 dB
Compressor ATTACK time: 60ms slowest CCW, 30ms at 12:00, 5ms fastest CW for 6dB compression
Compressor RELEASE time: 1.5s slowest CCW, 1s at 12:00, 100ms fastest CW from 6dB compression
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
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
Large LED illuminated VU METER
Meters switch to read Direct Output (1) from preamp, Output (2) from Main Out, or Compressor Gain Reduction
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
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.

Product Videos

Setting the Gain on a Manley CORE® Reference Channel Strip 01:34

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