Fred’s Lab announces new machine: the Manatee

Fred’s lab announces the Manatee, an ode to the golden era of digital machines with personality, together with modern twists and a crystal clear sound quality. With reminiscences of electric organ tones and out-of-this-world but beautifully contained harshness, the Manatee unveils new sound exploration paths.

Loosely inspired by digital classics, the Manatee excels at producing dark & moody pads, snappy or round bell like tones and behaves very well in known VA (virtual analog) territory. At the frontier between the beloved wavetable and the unconventional additive synthesis, by fusing a complex procedural spectral source with a top notch realtime re-sampler, the Manatee allows any musician to efficiently alter their sound timbre as they discover.

Besides the spectral generator, a versatile sub-oscillator (including FM features) and a filtered noise source (with variable sample rate) are on the menu. The sound get further refined thanks to the great sounding filter, and an extra tuned resonator followed by the overdrive module. A per-part stereo delay is also there.

Built like a tank, using only industrial grade pots, switches and connectors, the Manatee is a professional piece of gear and there to last.


  • Dual core 16 bit fixed-point DSP
  • Hand crafted assembly engine
  • TI (originally Burr Brown) DACs
  • DIN MIDI IN & OUT (with smart THRU)
  • Synchronization by ext. clock or MIDI clock
  • High contrast / backlit 16×2 LCD display
  • 16x aluminum potentiometers
  • 25x long lasting illuminated switchs


  • 3 part 9 voice multitimbral spectral engine
  • Extensive MIDI 1.0 with MPE or multimode
  • superb self-resonant filter model
  • overdrive module
  • dedicated loopable envelopes (ENV. F & ENV. A) dedicated filter LFO
  • spectral modulators (MOD. B – for body & MOD. F for formant) resonator module
  • long and modulated stereo delay
  • audio buses mixer (Main, Aux & Reverb)
  • simple arpeggiator reverb module
  • Various Main and Aux buses master EQs

*These specifications will evolve during project development

Although product research and development is self-founded, Fred’s Lab needs additional finances to make this machine production ready (to cover lab testing, procurement costs, tooling, production line rental & associated setup costs…).
Fred’s Lab will eventually run a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter (no date to be announced) to produce a limited first run of 150 machines.

The two machines presented @ Superbooth 2022 (so-called “Superbooth Edition”) will be sold on auction, also to help financing the project development. Auctions will take place on Ebay, on the 14/06/2022.

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