Manley Stingray® II Integrated Stereo Amplifier Close Window  
Dear EveAnna,

Thank you to you, all at Manley and Anthony Perrotta (Perrotta Consulting) for my new Manley Stingray. Sound aside, it's a beautiful piece of design and fabrication work--bravo!

I'm not quite sure how you do it (as I am in a labor-based design business), but I think that your price for this amplifier is more than fair when one considers the design time, marketing, materials, fabrication (did I say profit?!), etc. The hardware choices and fabrication are all just wonderful. This is a VERY solid amp and it sounds just great, across the sonic spectrum. Also, I just loved the packaging--very efficient and quite effective in our drop-kick- shipping era.

Although I received it just before Thanksgiving, it has only been this week that I have finally gotten around to hooking and heating it up. It's sounding better and better and I think that for our small house, the Triode mode will be just perfect. Also, I find the bias adjustment test-point "cups" to be VERY convenient for those of us with less than three hands!

I have been a solid state amp owner since the mid-1970s (a number of different Yamahas like the CA-2010, B-2, etc.), and of late some have made me a convert back to tube amps (a friend assisted with the re- building of a venerable [EL84-based] Heathkit AA-151 and I have a McIntosh MC240). So, once I saw a photo of a Stingray and from what I had heard from others, I knew that it was a very safe bet that I would like this amp. I do--it not only sounds great, it looks great!

Thanks again EveAnna, to you for your great design and to all at Manley for this great amplifier--best wishes,

Walker


Hi EveAnna,

Thanks for letting me know that my Stingray is now registered. I continue to really enjoy the sound this little amp produces, but was wondering if there are any tweaks that you might recommend to make it sound even better. I have read some on-line reviews that seem to recommend replacing some of the stock tubes with NOS ones, but I have no idea if this will acutally improve anything.

Being a tube amp owner for the past 18 years, I was really amazed at two things when I switched from my Xxxx amp to the Stingray. First of all I was hearing things on both CDs and vinyl that I have never heard before and secondly, I has hearing bass notes that I had never heard before.

For whatever it is worth, when I first heard the Stingray at The Analog Store in Raleigh I wasn't all that impressed, but Alex Lok allowed me to bring the amp home for an audition with my other equipment and in the room in which I planned to use it. WOW, WHAT A DIFFERENCE!!! I really couldn't believe it, so needless to say I didn't carry it back. Thanks for producing a great and affordable tube amp like the Stingray...I am really looking forward to many years of listening enjoyment using it.

E. Raven Ellis


EveAnna,

The Stingray has been here only 24 hours and I could not be happier! I am impressed not only with it's guts but also with it's finesse. The balance between details and the emotional whole is beyond what I've experienced till now. So far, I've listened to 'music' from Glenn Gould to Warren Zevon and if it weren't still cool here in Quebec City, I'd be spittin' out flies! ( My mouth is still open in wonder!)

And the Stingray is just plain gorgeous!

Thank you for doing what you do. I enjoy your joie de vivre! Félicitations!

(Angie and Rob at American Sound were superb.)

Best regards,

Gerard Paquet


Hello EveAnna,

The Stingray arrived in good shape week before last and actually a couple of days ahead of my assumed arrival schedule.

Kudos to your office for excellent communication as it was getting ready to ship. This kind of follow up unfortunately has become icing on the cake for most businesses, but is the kind of professionalism that stands out to me, and is greatly appreciated.

I continue to be amazed at how great my system sounds with this amp in place. The richness, fullness and texture of the presentation not to mention the HUGE soundstage are for the first time sounding absolutely wonderful.............and incredibly REAL. Very cool, almost spooky real, with completely disappearing speakers and everything. Detail, and subtle nuances of the recordings (like the room / venue acoustics of the performances) are extroardinarily vivid. And the low bass and punch this gem digs out of recordings.......WOW! Again, amazing! Every recording seems to sound better, and I can discover something new in cds I have heard a million times.

I could go on and on, but suffice to say, you have an incredible product here in my opinion (and I've owned MANY). I'm having FUN (the one thing that money can't buy, as the Beatles said) listening to everything I throw on the rig, CD and LP.........DVD's are great too. This amp's a definate keeper. Plus it will be a breeze swapping cables in and out for testing purposes having it positioned on top of my rack. In this important regard, coupled with it's superb across the board sonics, and details it manages to flesh out, it will be a perfect partner in my business. I would like to stay in touch with you, and give the Stinger a mention on my cable 'site when it goes live in a few weeks.

Thanks for producing a such a cool product, and again for the super deal.

A Completely Happy Audiophile Camper (for the first time in a long time),

Rob Fritz,
Audio Art Cables


Hi EveAnna,

Hooked a Stingray to one of my favorite pairs of speakers - the old Quad '57.

Let the system trundle away for about 6 hours and then did a little listening.

WOW!!!!!

Liquid, liquid, liquid midrange. The music is effortless, detailed and absolutely seductive. Vocals have a presence and depth previously unknown to these little 40 year old Quads! (This pair built in 1962!) Dianna Krall is alive. Her voice is so natural and she stands between the speakers but yards behind, such is the depth portrayed.

Admittedly the previous amps were the original quad 22 valves with matching control amp complete with their original GEC valves alternating with the Quad 33/303 combo. .....but hey they were still damn good! ...and they made good music.

But not like the Manley Stingray. This little guy (girl?) can float like a butterfly .....but can it sting like a bee?

The quads aren't world famous for pushing out the lower registers in prodigious quantities but despite what many may say they can go fairly low albeit at low volumes. The bass is there, not rock and roll bass but clean quick bass. Gone is the slightly tubby bass of the earlier quad valve amps and here is a quick, tight and utterly tuneful bass.

The upper treble proves the quad critics wrong. These old quads have never been allowed to show off like this before The Stingray plays no small role here - I know I have played many an amp through quad 57s over many years - none to the equal of the Stingray. The metallic shimmer of cymbals has a clarity and attack which is truly astonishing.

Weakenesses? What weaknesses! Well the Quads and Stingray are a very happy combo and it didn't take brain surgery to figure out that hooking this little fish up to the ultimate aristocratic gentleman of hi fi, the Quads, just might be a marriage made in heaven. It is!

Can the Stingray play really loud? Dunno yet - Quads don't do that!

Can the Stingray really rock? Dunno yet - Quads don't do that!

But can the Stingray float like a butterfly - you bet it can! .....and can it sting like bee! You bet it can that too.

Can it bludgeon you to death with shear weight of power - probably not ..... but who cares!

Beguiling, bewitching and utterly bedazzling!

Well done EveAnna. I bought six Stingrays - maybe I will keep them all for myself!

I live in a lovely home with a double volume glazed window looking over Durban and the Indian Ocean. A glass of red wine and a long session of listening is calling me softly. Guess I will go have another little listen!

Listen carefully - I'll turn the volume up ever so slightly!

Best Wishes

Mike Blake


Thanks to your French importer I had the pleasure to have at home yours Stingray and Snapper electronics during a couple of days.

My opinion about this beauties=

Stingray =

Amazing sound, great fluidity and great timber accuracy. Superb soundstage. “Hi-fi” is gone…music is here… any stress, the silence between the notes is very impressive, perfectly evident (so necessary to make the music alive), great emotion listening to vocal or piano performances . A great experience and huge pleasures.

Snapper=

More body and powerful than the Stingray, great energy on all the spectrum range, very “solid” soundstage …. But….the “essence” of the music is less evident. The performer intentions are not so easy to understand, the “phrasé” of the music is not so impressive, the “cantabile” of the music is less ”here” than with the Stingray. The silence between the notes is amazing. Of course I am probably more sensible to the music intimacy and the beauty of the timbers than to the big spectacle of the sound…..Both are great musical instruments…..

Keep up the great work

Kisses

Jean Marie


Just a note of thanks to let you know that the stingray I bought one year ago continues to sound fantastic and way better than anything other amplification I've tried w/ my system. (VPI scout/ benz micro-glider, sumiko tube box and revel F30s...most of this from MusicLovers in Berkeley)

I recently purchased an expensive, powerful and very well reviewed set of solid state monoblks (definately rated hi in the "value" catagory) in the hopes of getting a sound on par or surpassing the stingray, but with a different flavor.

The ss monoblks now sit dormant 99% of the time...the stingray makes just about all my music sound better. Maybe its tube coloration that I've grown to love, but your stingray simply gets me so much closer to the music than the sterility of the ss monoblocks. The stingray projects a holographic image while that of ss's is 1-D.

So thanks for the wonderful product which makes my world sing,

Mario


EveAnna,

I received my "first" Manley component earlier this week which is the Stingray Integrated amp. Let me start out by saying, this little amp sounds better than I had imagined. I used to own a XXXX XXXXXXX (one of at least 5 other tube amps that I have owned) which is a similar amp, push-pull EL-84 40 watt integrated. The Manley absolutely destroys the XXXX, especially in the tight bass response. The Stingray is one of the most three dimensional amps I have owned. It simulates a 3-D sound field using a set of stereo speakers better than any amp I have ever had in my system.

I currently have tested the Stingray with 2 of my reference speakers; a pair of Martin-Logan Quest-D and Energy 2.3 Veritas i. Actually, the Stingray sounded better with the Logan's. I expected it to sound better with the Energy's since they have a greater sensitivity and quite possibly a higher impedance. Apparently, I can throw that out the window. It sounds fabulous with the Martin-Logan's.

Also, I wanted to welcome Albert to Manley. I know, I'm just as new as Albert to Manley but wanted to extend a welcome to him and to let him know if he is ever in Michigan to look me up and would like to meet him sometime.

I'm a believer in Manley products. Ever since I listened to Geoff Wyshak's system back in 1996 in Midland Michigan.

--Scott McCaul


I just received my unit and am completely happy with it. I thought I'd give you some observations about the unit:

1) The build quality is exceptional for something that retails in its price range. Your attention to detail is to be congratulated. I've owned other similar amps that have in some cases been more than twice the cost and saw more imperfections in workmanship than in your product. You must be proud of your employees...

2) I love the design! The slight old style font for the faceplate gives the unit a unique elegance. I like the faceplate color and am delighted to see it something other than silver or black.

3) The sound is getting better with use. I'm working on completing the rest of the system which I use in my bedroom.

Thank you again!

John Brent


EveAnna,

O.K., maybe it's because I was test driving [another tube amplifier] through my oldish Carver C1 pre-amp, then [another tube preamplifier], or maybe it's because I'm running the Rega Jupiter straight into the Stingray via Nordost Blue Heaven. Most likely it's because the Stingray is the best thing I have ever heard. It's like CPR to my music collection. New life has been breathed into selections I've loved to all my listening years. The [other tube amplifier] was like an iron lung I had to try to get into, rather unwillingly most of the time.

Starting with my favorite artist, Radiohead, I listend to my catalog of their career. I heard nuances which had previously been lost to solid state pre and amplification. In addition, the recreation of the soundstage is phenominal. I enjoy my Sony ES/Definitive home theater, however the Stingary shows me that stereo isn't dead, it just needed Manely CPR. The [other amplifier's] stereo was "fine", but that's not good enough in this price point. Exceptional needs to be the descriptor and the Stingray soars!

Bells and whistles?, No Way!, let me hear it like it was intended! I applaud the simplicity of only two control dials. If symmetry could be had with only a single volume control, perhaps on the top or side, it'd be even closer to the pure recorded music, if that is possible. There's a perfect presentation of what the artist intended and the Stingray delivers. The only other thing my fingers crave is a Manley coffee mug as I gulp expresso eagerly anticipating the next CD, of my 1,300 or so, waiting to be revived!

I've been "burning in" with a steady stream of tube related performances. Neil Young pushing harmonic distortion, Miles Davis remastered on original tube mixers at the proper speed, Sonic Youth with eclectic open chord tunings, and various bits of electronica so as not to ignore the modern European continent with their keyboarded pops, beeps, clicks and samples.

Of course I've read the extremely technical reviews of Charles Hansen and Nancy & Duncan MacArthur, Dick Olsher, Rob Mead, Paul Knutson. Most importantly, with the latter reviewers, they boast the amps ability to rock, which it does with both channels hammering.

Unlike the other fish in the sea, this Stingray is a keeper! Sincerely full of thanks for your design and dedication to the music,

Gerry Dedenbach


EveAnna,

Bought the Stingray from Singer. It’s in my new music room with a vintage Steinway. When I play the piano with the recordings it’s hard to discern live from canned.

Great job/product!!! Thanx for your help,

Charles Manley


Hi EveAnna,

Greetings from tropical Singapore!

I started out several weeks ago looking for a new pair of speakers to go with my aging but still decent solid-state class A separates. I ended up with a pair of Sonus Faber Concerto's *and* the Stingray. All it took was two listening sessions in the Manley dealer's showroom (Stereophile Audio Video), yesterday and today. The combination of Concerto and Stingray got my undivided attention immediately, despite the speakers having only about 40-50 hours on them and the Stingray barely two days out of the packing carton.

It's hard to believe that you and your team managed to make a 50W tube amp sound like that. The dealer will send off my order tomorrow morning. Please ship ASAP!

By the way, it would be nice to have adjustable negative feedback on the Stingray. Other than making it easier to listen to bad CDs, it would also make it easier to match the amp with speakers.

Anyway, thank you for a fine amplifier.

Best regards,

Benjamin Lian
Singapore 22 July 1999


Dear Saint EveAnna,

Thank you for exceeding my expectations with your awesome Stingray. I have never heard music like this before. I won't go into details here, but the experience of hearing my old favorites "for the first time" was literally breathtaking. Plus, the visual impact of the Stingray is a pleasure in itself. With the lights out the effect is eerie: performers are present, and though invisible, are bathed in the warm glow of the angular tube arrayand snappy front panel. True to the published review, the bass response was superlative. Symphonic bass drum had zero boominess, yet better presence than I had been accustomed to hearing on my previous preamp and amp (by Adcom.) Also superlative were the high end (particularly audible with cymbals) and vocals (which did not "float around" the soundstage even when accompanied by full orchestra.)

In a word,

Satisfied.

Michael Knight


The Amazing Stingray

Dear Ms. EveAnna Manley,

I recently purchased a Stingray amplifier from my good friends Elliot and Kevin at The Acoustic Image in L.A., my local neighborhood stereo store. W O W !!! I rarely get so excited about the difference in the sound of my system when I audition a new piece of equipment in it. The detail, delicacy and honest reproduction of the instruments and voices is superb. The imaging and depth of the soundstage is equally impressive. Perhaps most amazing is that my wife (who has heard little if any improvement from previous significant upgrades) for the first time ever, said she heard a noticeable improvement to the stereo system, and complimented me for my decision to place the Stingray into it. And that was while she was doing the dishes in the next room, and just listening casually. That the piece is so cool looking is the icing on the cake. All of you did a wonderful job. My final point... The fact that the owners manual thanks me for purchasing the equipment, rather than congratulating me, is very refreshing, much appreciated, and a nice touch. Hopefully I have the opportunity to meet you one day at Elliot's store.