Item #1565656 Model #MSLCHPTBAR

Manley Variable Mu Stereo Compressor Limiter with T-Bar Mod Standard


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A stereo compressor with a side chain control that helps smoothly change its gain.

The Manley Variable Mu Stereo Compressor Limiter is an all-tube, all-transformer staple to your setup with a high pass side chain mod included. It has become a mastering studio standard and has contributed to most hit records over the last decade. It works by using the remote cut-off or re-biasing of a vacuum tube to achieve compression. The unique 5670 dual triode is at the center of the peak-reducing and compression action constantly being re-biased by the vacuum tube rectified side-chain control voltages which cause this tube to smoothly change its gain. The compress mode is soft-knee 1.5 to 1 ratio while the sharper knee limit mode starts at 4 to 1 and moves to a more dramatic ratio of 20 to 1 when limiting over 12dB. The knee softens as more limiting is used. Distortion can be creatively used by turning up the input and turning down the output while using very little or no compression.
  • Type: Vacuum tube limiter/compressor with T-Bar Mod
  • Number of channels: 2
  • Controls: Threshold, ratio, attack, recovery, input/output gain
  • Ratio compress mode: 1.5:1
  • Limit mode: 4:1 to 20:1
  • Frequency response: 20Hz-25kHz
  • Inputs: 2 x XLR
  • Outputs: 2 x XLR
  • Side chain inserts: Side chain highpass filter
  • Tubes: 4 x 6BA6, 2 x 5751/12AX7, 2 x 12BH7, 2 x 12AL5
  • Rack spaces: 2U
  • Power source: Standard IEC AC cable (included)
  • Height: 3.5"
  • Depth: 10"
  • Width: 19"


  • T-Bar Mod for smooth limiting curves, lower THD, and optimized per-channel phase and stereo channel matching
  • Variable gain vacuum tube (per channel) has 2 x 6BA6 single pentodes wired in in triode mode
  • Manley input and output transformers with pure nickel laminations in mu-metal case
  • Flat frequency response from 20Hz–25kHz
  • Balanced inputs and outputs
  • Fully differential all-tube circuitry using one 5751/12AX7, 12AL5, and 12BH7 per channel
  • Independently regulated B+ and heater supplies
  • Includes HP side chain modification as standard
  • Hard-wire bypass switch
  • Silent conductive plastic input attenuator
  • Continuously variable threshold
  • Switch for limit or compress modes
  • Front-panel mounted meter calibration
  • Limit (4:1 to 20:1) or compress (1.5:1)
  • Stereo link switch