McIntosh


I am new to forum and I see many comments for and against McIntosh gear.  I have 2 systems with MC2105 and MC2205 SS amps running Monitor Audio GS60 and PL200 speakers respectively. They sure sound sweet to me and I have no desire to change.  But never say never, so is there anyone out there who had this vintage Mac SS product, thought it was great but then actually did side by side comparison with other SS amps, Bryston, etc and concluded they were wrong and the non Mac is just so much better.  I have not done the side by side.  Thanks much. 
tenorsaxjr
I was looking at getting McIntosh gear but two of my friends who had McIntosh SS separates (pre-amps & power amps) for the longest time, auditioned Devialet SS integrated amps and ended up switching to Devialet.  After spending some time with the Devialets, both decided to never go back to McIntosh. 
You'll get all kinds of ideas here on this subject, but do realize that Mac is not so popular on this website. Most that have the biggest objections have never owned it. I have owned the 2205, and I liked it, but the newer Mac gear is much, much better. I have a 7200, which runs circles around the 2205.  If you're happy with your setup, which you say, then what's wrong with that? There will always be more and more things to part you from your money, so the choice is up to you.
tenorsaxjr,

There is no need to defend Mcintosh on this website or any other. Everyone has their favorite manufacturers. Ask a Chevy guy what he thinks of Ford and you will hear a similar conflict. Those of us who own some McIntosh gear know how we feel about the product. Whether you bought it for the looks (green meters) or the sound (solid, palpable), just be happy with your purchase and know that there are many here who agree with you and some that don't. Does it really matter?
Scratch your itch, it's the only way you will know for sure. McIntosh is not the be all end all of audio equipment, there is tons of great gear out there and only you will know what you like best. The posters above are correct, McIntosh makes great gear, I own a ton of it, but I also own and have owned a lot of other brands, many were better, many were worse, it all  comes down to what makes you happy. Don't listen to all the bashers out there, there's a reason McIntosh has been around so long, but the only way for you to know for sure is to take the plunge and try other gear.
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McIntosh's use of autoformers on their ss amps doesn't make sense to me, the use of which compromises frequency response linearity.
When I purchased my Musical Fidelity M6si this past December I auditioned it along with Krell Vanguard and the McIntosh MA6700. While I liked that the MA6700 has more inputs, I honestly wouldn't make use of all of them and found the inputs on the M6si adequate for my purposes. Upon listening (same material and speakers GET T2s), for whatever reason to me the Krell came in third, but admittedly auditioning in an audio store can yield less than exactly perfect results. I was hard pressed to discern any difference in sound quality between the MAC and MF. It boiled down to dollars and the MAC was slightly more than twice the price of the MF. To me the MF was and remains a far better value, but if cost weren't a consideration I probably would have taken the MAC. 
On a different note (no pun intended), deceased now for 25 some odd years is an old friend of mine - Eddie Layton. He was the organist for the NY Yankees and a musician in his own right. His audio equipment consisted of nothing but McIntosh - and within McIntosh whatever was their top-of-the-line at the time he had to have it :)

There was a time when I would have loved to have owned a great piece or two of McIntosh gear; I am a sucker for those glowing meters. Even more than McIntosh, I lust the look and build of Accuphase components. And tomorrow, my Accuphase E-470 gets delivered! A dream come true. I've heard people say that Accuphase is the Japanese McIntosh. I, for one, would much rather have a well executed FULL function integrated amp or preamp than a 'minimalist' design and that's another reason why I have always admired McIntosh.
I always thought the McIntosh reputation was with their tube amps, the MC 60 and later MC 275.

The McIntosh Autoformers have been discussed ad nauseam in many audiofile sites. Whomever says it does not make sense should first educate themselves on why their designers chose this design option before making comments. If they didn’t make sense, I have no doubt that McIntosh could easily do what most everyone else does and get rid of all the (unnecessary) complexity and weight and make more money all at the same time.
^ OK, then educate me.
Oranfoster - congrats on the wise purchase of the Accuphase E-470.  You will absolutely love it!  I have had mine for about 6 months now and I can safely say that it will probably be my last integrated!
unsound, just do a Google search on "McIntosh Autoformers". Plenty of great information out there.
^I have, and have found nothing so far that changes my mind. Perhaps many, many years ago when the then fairly new to market transistors of the time were not nearly as reliable as they are today,   and especially for a company like McIntosh with their previous experience it might have made sense. It's interesting that McIntosh doesn't use them on all their ss amps today.
Tenorsaxjr.......why look for zebras in your kitchen.   If you like your system just enjoy it.  The fastest way to empty a bank account is to look for ever-better.  ...and you'll never find it.
Maybe I qualify for your question.  I was a Mac user for years.  A ma-6100 was my first.  My last Mac system was a c-29 preamp, a MR-78 tuner, MC-2105 amp (powering a second set of speakers), a MC-2300 powering my main speakers.  

Other amps that I had, were a Krell KSA 50, and a pair of Mark Levinson ML-2's.  Also had a Citation 16a and a GAS Grandson.

Now, as you can see there are major power differences in those amps with the mighty Mac as King.  My goodness, the MC-2300 will drive a half ohm load all day long and provide nearly 2000 watts per channel doing it.  It was wonderfully musical and very enjoyable. 

But, the Grandson was my favorite. All of those amps had something wonderful about them, but the Grandson had a voicing that was so captivating it was hard to stop listening.

These days I am listening to vintage Sansui.  Enjoy your Mac system.  You'll know when it's time to change, or if it's ever time to change.  You might find that the Mac system will work for the long haul.  I know many who feel that way and can't argue the point. Mac gear is superb!

Don't ever let anyone make you feel as though McIntosh is inferior to anything else because it's not. I would also disregard any posts that claim there's better gear for less money. Some of the best music I've ever listened too was through Mac gear.




I second the meter thing…all amps should have meters, preferably with blue background lighting. I use a Squeezebox Touch and at night often use the meter display setting. Any music sounds at least 37% better if there's a meter someplace…this is a fact. Also, using the words "vintage Sansui" and "my goodness" in the same post…is…uh…something.
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