Manley Skipjack RCA Switcher
4-into-1 or 3-into-2 audiophile source selector. Compare cables and sources!
Have you ever wanted to compare two (or more!) sets of interconnects or listen to the difference between a couple of preamps or a few CD players or be your own armchair reviewer? How about you guys with the Manley Steelhead? You have one line input available and have to keep swapping cables when you want to listen to your CD or tuner? Hey, or would you like to go backwards and have one source drive either this or that? And why has no one ever commercially offered a real high-end audiophile thing to do this job?
What you need is a simple A/B source switcher, and that's what the Manley Skipjack is, and more. But behind the deceptively simple facia is some incredibly clever and thoughtful engineering.
Why Not Cobble Together Your Own Switcher?
Manley has been building little switch boxes for years which it uses at the factory or in listening systems to compare two different things. You might be tempted to make yourself a little switchbox with a couple of RCAs wired to a toggle switch. A few problems with this approach:
1) Toggle switches produce an audible click because the contact is not make-before-break.
2) You get a lot of high-frequency leakage across small toggle switches which destroys your imaging cues.
3) You need to use long cables running back and forth between you and the gear in order to switch from your listening position while listening so now you're listening to long cables.
4) Usually you run out of available poles to be able to also switch grounds which leaves you with potential ground loops from all the RCAs being permanently tied together.
5) Little flimsy plastic boxes get pulled all over the place by those gigantic hifi cables and they just won't sit where you tell them to!
Drawing from Manley Pro Designs
Borrowing technology Manley designed into many custom Mastering Consoles built for the most discerning clients, Manley brought its little research lab switchboxes to the next level using doubled up high-end relays at the heart.
Also, Manley added microprocessor control to the relays, one that turns itself off when it isn't hearing commands and so it won't make any noise that can infect your audio. With software programming instead of timing capacitors, various functions can be built into the switching, for example to make absolutely silent transitions, or to put the Skipjack into A-B-X mode where it selects A, then B, then either A or B randomly to really test your listening skills. Lots of clever stuff can be done with this technology, and we're doing it all here in the Skipjack.
Phono or line input levels
Switching via dual contact NAIS relays per leg per input
6" silver stranded 18 AWG internal wire
Channel Separation: 116 dB
Signal-to-Noise Ratio: 117 db
Power Supply: 9 V DC external, 2.2 A
Power Consumption: 26 W (Max)
Power Supply Plug Diameter: 2.1 mm ID, 5.5 mm OD, center positive
Dimensions (WDH): 7" x 7.75" x 2"
Weight: 6 lb.