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The LA-3A Leveling Amplifier from Universal Audio is a faithful reproduction of the original classic solid-state compressor. The single channel unit is housed in a 2U half-rack chassis and is loved for its unique compression characteristics and sonic signature.
The original LA-3A made its debut at the 1969 NY AES show and marked a departure from the tube design of the LA-2A. The LA-3A incorporated components and design concepts from the Putnam-designed 1176LN Limiting Amplifier and was immediately embraced as a studio workhorse and is still widely used today.
The reissue meticulously retains all the qualities of the original. This includes the same simple control set and the T4 electro-optical attenuator, which is the source of the unit's program dependent compression. The commonly performed "LA-3A gain mod" is added as an additional switch for maximum studio versatility.
The LA-3A does not have user controls for attack and release times. These are automatically controlled by the nature of the T4 cell. The lack of controls in no way compromises the functioning of the unit. Due to the automatic and extremely musical way the LA-3 rides level, it's quick and easy to get good results, especially on vocals and acoustic instruments.
Faithful recreation of the classic solid-state opto-compressor
Custom Universal Audio transformers and T4 cell
Discrete amplifier with up to 50dB of gain
Rear panel "Gain Mod" switch for additional gain control
In the Box
Universal Audio LA-3A - Classic Single Channel Audio Leveler/Compressor
AC Power Cable
One (1) Year Warranty
Table of Contents
Number of Channels
1 x XLR (2-pin hot) Terminal Strip (shared with output)
1 x XLR (2-pin hot) Terminal Strip (shared with input)
Maximum Input Level
-0dBm @ 50dBm gain setting
Set by Peak Reduction and Gain control and by the input level of the input device
Program and control settings dependent
1.5ms or less, program dependent
Stage 1: 60ms (50% release) Stage 2: 0.5 to 5 seconds, program dependent