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  1. #1

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    Default nary a word on McIntosh amps

    I've been both silently viewing for quite a while and then letting loose w/ multiple posts. There is a subject that comes up quite often, the additon of an external amplifier to bolster your avr or to go completely w/ seperates.What I have noticed and this can be purely a financial decision but I very rarely see McIntosh ever recommended as a go amplifier.To me growing up this was the professionals' amp.Meaning Drs., lawyers accountants ,bankers. So do you find that they are still holding their value to a point where they are out of reach to most here or is there something that rubs you guys the wrong way about the brand. Build quality has not changed from the 50's from what I have been told even after being taken over by a giant Japanese Holding Co.I'm very happy w/ my Adcom but for some reason I was always drawn to the Macs,maybe because the Dead used them. I don't know but if I ever came across a 2200 w/ the right scenario a would jump on it.
    Not dissing any other brand of amps here I haven't heard that many to begin w/ to have an opinion either way.

  2. #2

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    I've never spent time with the higher end Mac's outside of a poorly setup hifi shop, but those I know who have owned McIntosh have moved on without looking back. There is a draw to McIntosh that I think stems from build quality and aesthetics, as well as the legendary name from their earlier days. From what I hear, they have a house sound that is definitely hit or miss.
    Usher CP-6311, Shuguang S200MK, Shuguang S845MK, Pioneer BDP-51fd, Douglas IC's, AQ cv-8 SC's, Pangea/Douglas PC's, Epson 8100

  3. #3

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    If want McIntosh visit the Audio Aficionado site. The fan boys are there. Personally, I have no experience, but visually they strike me as a fancy Emotiva.

  4. #4

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    Aesthetics, build quality...they are there.

    But there are better brands sonically out there that may not cost as much or be as pretty but whoop em when it comes to acoustics.

    Hell, my "no name" AMC CVT-2030S stomps the daylights out of a pair of MC30 monoblocks when it comes to sound quality.
    It doesn't look as pretty doing it though.

    Don't get me wrong...I would love to have an Anniversary Edition MC-275 but I can't justify the cost of it when a pair of Carver Statement Monoblocs will absolutely whoop it for less than half the price.


    Bear in mind that this is coming from a McIntosh fanboy...even have the t-shirts. Only audio t-shirts I own...
    "Unwad those panties and have a good time man. We're all here to help each other, no matter how it might appear." DSkip
    I may have an addiction... RTA-15TL, SDA 2, LSi25, LSi15, LSi9, LSi7, LSiCx2, LSiFX, LS/FX, RT/FX, DSW MP2000...and that's just the Polks...

  5. #5

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    I have heard both solid state and tube McIntosh gear and it sounds fantastic. However, they sell at a very high price point, and at those prices I would prefer other brands.

  6. #6

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    Since the late 40's that was the equipment that everyone measured quality with...did you know that over 85 percent of the vintage amps from those times are still in very good operating condition. built to last and low maintenance,sound quality is superb!

  7. #7

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    O yea one more thing to add....nice things usually cost money!

  8. #8

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    I've yet to hear a Mac amp that can control the lower bass notes with an Iron fist. Always seems a tad sloppy down there and other notes seem too rounded for my tastes. That's just my opinion based on past experiences, yours may of course differ.

    That said, and many others will agree, too many other brands out there than can put Mac's to shame and do it for less coin. Though I do love blue lights and meters, and Mac's have that down pat.

  9. #9

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    When I was 15, my dad gave me his MC 60 ....had it serviced once since then and believe you me it will kick the snot out of just about anything on the market! Performance is about matching the right components is it not?

  10. #10

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    Macs are nice, they do have excellent build quality( I have refurbished a few). But at there price point I would rather spend the money on a pair of NOS Valves VRD. mono amps. I am slightly biased though, and yes I have heard them in the same system.
    Speakers:SDA2a, sub:Atlantic Technologies 172 PBM
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  11. #11

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    I have to agree. The Macs I've heard have been fine but I have heard "better". And since they are in that upper "niche", up above my price range, I'd probably opt for something else if I were able to shell out that kind of money.

    I will admit that they do look "cool". As mentioned, they have that meter thing down. Very pretty and classy in appearance!

    cnh
    Onkyo TX-SR 805 System #1 HT AVR
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    Headphones: HD600, Q701, ATH-M50s etc. Bravo Audio Ocean amp., Onkyo P-304, Adcom GFA-555, Technics Direct Drive TT

  12. #12

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    I have heard some darn good McIntosh amps and preamps ( mono block on the amps) on a set of b&w and it sounded wonderful. I had a 2105 that to me sounded better then a lot of newer amps and the 2105 was from 1975! The build quality of McIntosh is what other company's stride for or it seems like it. That said, is there better sounding for less money? I think so but, sound is all personal so while I might like the sound of an amp or preamp, someone else might like the competing amp. McIntosh holds its value amazingly well on the used market.

    I would love to hear this though.... as I think we all would just to say we heard it... http://www.mcintoshlabs.com/us/Brand...sID=78&Block=1

  13. #13

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    Most here have a taste of bang/buck. Some go all out but even those who do - go above and beyond Mac gear. Mac stuff is nice and it's built well - given I prefer other things for the price. If I ever got my hands on some of the gear I'd try it out. I had a C26 pre not too long ago and was unimpressed.
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    Den - Rotel RSP-1068 / Threshold CAS-2 / Boston VR-M60 / BDP-05FD

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by erniejade View Post
    I would love to hear this though.... as I think we all would just to say we heard it... http://www.mcintoshlabs.com/us/Brand...sID=78&Block=1
    yep right there with you......sweet looking anyway

  15. #15

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    I have a McIntosh C 50 preamp and a McIntosh 452 amp that I purchased less than a year ago. I doubt I will ever want to, or need to replace either one. The sound quality, build quality, etc. is exceptional. I'm one very happy McIntosh customer.

  16. #16

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    The MAc line like all products have hits/misses.
    A 275 amp is a very good unit. You aren't going to find much to beat it.
    In the SS line, they have gobbs of power and those sexy blue meters.
    But they are definitely $$$$ There in lies the problem.
    "The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. But it does me no injury for my neighbour to say there are twenty gods, or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg." --Thomas Jefferson

  17. #17

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    Not my cup of tea that's for sure.
    'Political Correctness'.........defined

    "A doctrine fostered by a delusional, illogical minority and rabidly promoted by an unscrupulous mainstream media, which holds forth the proposition that it is entirely possible to pick up a turd by the clean end."

  18. #18

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    Spoke on this earlier...I received two MC 60's as a kid and a C8 from my dad. Since then I have gotten a MC240 paired with a MX 110. Except for routine checks and tube replacement,nothing has been done to this gear. Guys this is Mid 60's equipment...still punches when the need comes up. I will never give this gear up.

  19. #19
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    I knew a guy for years that owned a brick and mortar audio store.
    He started carrying Mac equipment and called me when it came it.
    I went over for a listen, a whole stack of Mac running some Klipsch Cornwalls (this was years ago).
    I was blown away by the sound.

    Later on, he eventually invited me over to his house to listen to his system.
    I went over there thinking he would have a whole Mac audio system ect.
    I was a little shocked when I saw a total Lexicon system with Infinity speakers.

    He did not carry Lexicon or Infinity, but It sure sounded better than anything at his store.

    Different strokes I guess, I really liked the Mac stuff myself, but have not heard any in years.

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by sucks2beme View Post
    The MAc line like all products have hits/misses.
    A 275 amp is a very good unit. You aren't going to find much to beat it.
    In the SS line, they have gobbs of power and those sexy blue meters.
    But they are definitely $$$$ There in lies the problem.
    My DIY Carvers will beat the MC275's all day long.

    McIntosh is superb gear, and nothing to sneeze at. If you dream of them and have the scratch, go for it. Is there better for less? Sure, but much of that gear has yet to earn the reputation of the Mac, and does not hold value as well.
    HT Setup... Pioneer Elite SC-37, Polk Audio SDA-SRS 1.2TL's , Oppo BDP 93
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  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by nooshinjohn View Post
    My DIY Carvers will beat the MC275's all day long.

    McIntosh is superb gear, and nothing to sneeze at. If you dream of them and have the scratch, go for it. Is there better for less? Sure, but much of that gear has yet to earn the reputation of the Mac, and does not hold value as well.
    I'm familiar with Carver's commercial amp, how is yours different? If it's similar, then I would say that your amp and the 275 are just two different flavors, and it would come down to personal preference.
    "He who fights with monsters should look to it that he himself does not become a monster. And when you gaze long into an abyss the abyss also gazes into you." Friedrich Nietzsche

  22. #22

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    I have a Mc C2300 preamp, MC452 amp and a MCD500 SACD deck; I will live witht hese for quite some time. This was my entry into the higher end of audio.
    Strictly 2 channel
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    Listening Room:
    McIntosh C2300 preamp
    McIntosh MC452 amp
    McIntosh MCD-500 SACD player
    AQ Colorado XLR ICs
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  23. #23

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    I have Mcintosh gears that I have paired with AR9....no it's not the best system in the world.....it's nice to know that I can get my money's worth if I decide to sell it....
    Video: LG 55LN5100/Samsung LNT4065F
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    HT: POLK SPEAKERS RTi6, FXi3, CSi5 - Sub SUB-1200
    2Ch system: MC2105, C-26, AR-XA, MR-80, AR-2A, AR9, BX-300

  24. #24

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    This is amazing to me, I have never heard one piece of mac gear, but from the pricing, even on the oldest rattiest stuff i have seen, I thought it was almost universally praised, very interesting to hear almost unanimous faint praise here, live and learn.
    humpty dumpty was pushed

  25. #25

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    McIntosh has made some superb products and many that I would consider mediocre and poor values at their original asking price and/or their current market price (I am speaking, not surprisingly, mostly of used/vintage Mac stuff).

    I own two pieces of McIntosh equipment - a C-28 preamp (ss) and an MC-2100 (autoformer-coupled ss) power amplifer. I do not care for the sound of either.

    That said, I'd sacrifice mission critical body parts to pick up a nice MC-225 (push-pull 7591) stereo power amplifier :-)
    all the best,
    mrh

  26. #26

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    I think I may start looking in this direction for amplification

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by polkfarmboy View Post
    I think I may start looking in this direction for amplification
    Which direction - Mac in general, MC-225, or body parts?
    all the best,
    mrh

  28. #28

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    I was thinking maybe a 252 amp? from reading it would seem like a good bridge between solid state and tubes. Many people seem to think they go great with electrostats

  29. #29

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    Many people say many things....


    What I've learned is that, as my ear 'matures' in this hobby, I take what others say into lesser consideration. There are a few people whose opinions I trust, and outside of that little circle, meh. There are way too many 'novices' in the hobby that make it a shot in the dark. Simply because they own the same speakers and say it sounds good doesn't mean it will. Ears differ, as well as experience with other gear that might sound better for the same token.
    Usher CP-6311, Shuguang S200MK, Shuguang S845MK, Pioneer BDP-51fd, Douglas IC's, AQ cv-8 SC's, Pangea/Douglas PC's, Epson 8100

  30. #30

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    I think I'm either really shocked or stupified at most of the responses.To be as widely panned by close to 2/3rds of you guys I must REALLY be living in the 70's like most of my friends say.A 2105 @105 a side and some AR 3a come on now, this was the perfect den set-up for the ages.Yes they cost an arm and a leg,do I know what I'm talking about ,I seriously doubt it but you do ALL admit they are just pretty to look at.
    2chl- Adcom 555- Onkyo P-301 pre- JVC-QL-A200 tt- Denon 1940 ci cdp- Samson PS-15 9 outlet- Niles Sp 6- 6 zone spkr selector- DCM TF 350s- ADC 303ax-KLH 331- Polk Audio '87 SDA 2Bs w/ ic cable (Dynamat extreme, black hole-5- Mills 0.5 resistor, liquid nails, RDO- 194 tweeters, Larry's rings, Armaflex gaskets, stained walnut tops )

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