McCormack Upgrade reviews

I currently have a McCormack DNA-2 DLX and have read about the upgrades Steve will do at SMCaudio. It seems that everyone goes straight to Rev. A. This upgrade costs more than what I want to put into my amp right now as it is my highest quality piece and I think more benefit could be achieved by upgrading other equipment.

My question is this: Can anyone comment on the different revision levels C, B, A, and A+ as to improvements they experienced. I am considering a Rev. C right now but I rarely (if ever) see people commenting about this or the other level upgrades.
This is why we have a forum search engine. Type in McCormack & you won't believe what comes back! Here below are a links to few threads that I found regarding SMC upgrades. Since you already have a deluxe (me too) it would only make sense to go to Rev A, since Rev B is already on par with the Deluxe models. The A+ level I believe only adds balancing transformers at the inputs; only a useful feature if you're using long balanced interconnects.
I had my DNA-1 Deluxe upgraded to Revision A Gold almost two years ago. The difference was astonishing and I have not regreted it at all. Every aspect of the amp was vastly improved. It was not inexpensive, but I feel it was definately worth it. In addition, it was a pleasure dealing with Steve and his assistant Derek. I would do it again.
Bob B gives good advice. I had my DNA2DX upgraded to Rev A a year ago and was very pleased with the results. Steve's assistant is Kris Jeter (not Dekek Jeter, the baseball guy. I think Kleiman, above just made a mental goof). Both Steve and Kris are great to deal with. Good Luck, and Cheers. Craig
You guys know if Steve is planning to do upgrades on the McCormacks produced after C/J took it over - like the DNA-125 or 225?
Steve told me he will not be offering revisions for the new amps. Understandable since McCormack's now owned by C-J, but Steve also told me the new amps already incorporate parts comparable to his B revisions so his revisions aren't quite as necessary either. I've got a DNA-0.5 Rev. A and it ain't going anywhere any time soon.

As for David's situation, it's not like the DNA-2DLX is a slouch of an amp and if there are other aspects of your system that are more limiting I'd start there and blow out the DNA-2 later(which I would definitely do). It all depends on where you perceive the weakest link in your system to be, but the Revisions are expensive and you need to assess what else you could do in your system with that money. Best of luck.

By the way, anyone know the difference between a DNA-2 Rev. A and a DNA-2LAE?

Thanks for the correction Craig. You're right.
I'm confused.

If Bundus is right about Deluxe models already being at level B, why would they list prices for doing revisions C and B to a Deluxe amp? Based on all the great things people have to say about Steve McCormack, I doubt he would offer revision levels that were not improvements.
David; you should call Steve at and get the "skinny" directly from him. In my talks with Steve, he indicated that the Rev. B would be an improvement over the DLX, and that he rarely gets requests to do Rev. C. The DNA2 is a big heavy amp and shipping cost is high, in addition to risking damage to the amp, so it really wopuldn't be worth it to me to send it in just for Rev. C. I think Rev. C is sort of a building block for the higher revisions.

2nd, I agree with Tim (above) in that the DNA2DLX is already an excellent amp and that if you have weaker links in your system, maybe that's where you should put your money. Cheers. Craig
Definately a significant upgrade in sound from dlx to Rev B on my DNA 0.5
I would like to add a few comments...

1) While I certainly appreciate Bob B's input, he is incorrect about the relationship between my "Revision B" and the earlier "Deluxe" upgrade. In fact, there is no relation whatever. I originally developed the Deluxe parts upgrade package for the DNA-1, back around '92 or '93. All current SMc Audio upgrades (A, B, & C) are based on circuit revisions to improve the fundamental performance of the DNA circuitry. Broadly speaking, Rev C includes ONLY the core circuit upgrades. Rev B builds on Rev C with an extensive parts and wiring upgrade, considerably beyond the original Deluxe package. Revision A is a complete rebuild of the entire amplifier, and the "Gold" level options were added after the original development of Rev A, and are available separately.

2) Balanced inputs and monoblock conversion are available options for all DNA amps. The techniques I now use for balancing and phase-splitting are much more sophisticated than those used in the original amps.

3) Different levels of revision (along with various options)exist for people with budget constraints and/or special needs. There is a clear progression of performance from Rev C, to B, to A, to "Gold." Each individual gets to decide what level makes the most sense for them, but there should be no confusion about the fact that the highest performance does cost the most.

4) The majority of my upgrade customers have chosen Revision A, usually with some mix of "Gold" level options. Revision B has certainly been popular, and the owners have been very pleased with the result - so much so, in fact, that several have opted to have their Rev B amp upgraded to Rev A.

5) As others have pointed-out, the original amps "are no slouch," and many people will be perfectly well-served by them. The upgrades exist for those who basically like my designs, but are looking for even higher levels of performance. The upgrades offer very high performance, indeed.

All of this is spelled-out pretty well on my website at Anyone who would like to discuss these issues in greater depth is welcome to call me at 760-732-0352, M-F, 9-6 PST (California).

Best regards,

Steve McCormack, designer
McCormack Audio

I think I speak for everyone when I thank you for your time and input to our questions about your current and previous products. It shows amazing dedication and interest in our/your hobby and I know everyone appreciates your involvement. I'm sure your one of the only designers staying this close to your end user. I am currently at an executive education class and Wharton reading all kinds of business case studies. Your story would be a great one to tell!

All the best.
Sounds as though Steve has considering upgrades to all DNA's. Hopefully this includes the 225, which I have and love. Will post what I find out later.
I own a DNA-2 LAE (Limited Anniversary Edition) and thoroughly enjoy it's many qualities. Peter Moncrief of Intern'l Audio Review rated the DNA-2 LAE as the top ss state amp back in 1999 if that means anything.

It's my understanding that the DNA-2 Rev. A would offer slight sonic improvements over the LAE version. Better relays (or no relays), etc.. From what I understand the LAE used a certain Toshiba transistors that were extremely fast and Toshiba no longer makes.

Anyway, I have no intention to upgrade the LAE. Instead, I intend to one day purchase a base DNA-2 and send it to Steve McCormack for a Rev A gold upgrade.

Have any of you DNA-2 (any version) guys converted your amp to 230 volts? If so, I'd love to hear about it. I've got the circuit breaker, the romex, and the schematic. Just lacking the guts as I'd hate to blow the thing up.