Angling for an affordable yet world-class vacuum tube phono stage? The hunt is over! The spawn of the Manley Steelhead – one of the world’s greatest phono preamplifiers – Stereophile Class A Recommended Component and The Absolute Sound’s Preamp of the Year, has arrived. The Chinook epitomizes the sound of the Steelhead. Designed for the music lover, not the switch tweaker.
Like the Steelhead, each channel employs the two triode sections of a 6922 for amplifying duties with highly accurate passive RIAA equalization networks. In the Chinook, the signal is then directly coupled to another 6922 dual triode serving as the output driver in a White Follower configuration. This output stage circuit is our favorite because of its super-low output impedance and beefy current-driving capabilities. It can drive long cable lengths and difficult loads, tube or solid-state. Bring it on. No wimpy cathode followers here!
Setting up the Chinook couldn’t be easier. There are two internal settings for optimal gain: 45dB for Moving-Magnet cartridges and 60dB for Moving-Coil cartridges. Set it and forget it! The back panel contains DIP switches for adjusting the input resistive and capacitance loading values. 31 possible options between 26 and 800 Ohms plus 47k Ohms and 7 capacitive loading choices between 50 pF and 350 pF provide flexibility to match any cartridge and fine tune the tone. Audiophile-grade and time-proven componentry is used throughout, embodying Manley’s dedication to seductive sonics, combined with the reliability that professionals around the world depend on. At just about a quarter of the price of our revered Steelhead preamplifier, the Chinook’s focus is on elegance of design, careful execution, efficient construction, and appreciable quality.
Designed and built in California, the Chinook exemplifies Manley’s commitment to our local community and to a simple, clean, and quiet signal path. The Chinook demonstrates the supreme linearity of vacuum tubes while providing the flexibility needed to embrace any turntable setup. Everything from the most exotic 180 gram audiophile pressing to 25 cent thrift-store classics will be reproduced accurately and musically.
Don’t let this one get away! Hook a Chinook!
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