Mcintosh MA6900 compared to Mcintosh separates?

I like the relatively small size of the Mcintosh MA6900 when compared to the Mc separates, but thinking long term are the separates a better option given music abilities and flexibility? In other words, how much of a sonic tradeoff is the MA6900? 200 watts is more power than I would ever need so I'd be looking at Mc amps as an upgrade in sound quality, not power and of course being able to switch out an amp or preamp separately. What about the preamp section of the MA6900 as compared to Mc preamps? Would I be perfectly happy with the MA6900 given all things? Thanks for your input.
I have an MA-6900 and LOVE it! It has pre-out / amp-in jacks, so flexibility should be no problem. The unit is supplied with McIntosh jumpers for use as an integrated.
Mind if I ask why you LOVE the MA6900? I never hear anyone complain about the it. Everyone seems to love this integrated.
I don't remember the exact model numbers, but I listened to the seperate MAC amp and preamp whose critical sections went into making the 6900. Then I listened to the 6900. They were virtually identical. I went with the 6900 to save money, a pair of interconnects, and space. The 6900 is beautiful, cosmetically and sonically. It present all the flexibility I require in my two channel system and sounds clear, with great PRAT. If you do a search in this section on the 6900 you can find some lengthier comments I and others have made about this unit. You can't go wrong with this piece. I bought mine here at Audiogon for $3100.....and I have not looked back. I now have an all MAC system and just love it! Its the most enjoyable system I have owned since my VAC, MUSE, EAD system. Good Luck,
MA 6900 save you money on pre or amp, MA 6900 save you money of another pair of IC, MA 6900 save you time for connecting, MA 6900 has a shorter signal path with less coloration than seperate. BEST INTEGRATED AMP I HAVE HEARD. CLASSIC McINTOSH SOUND.
I did a lengthy comparison between McIntosh's integrateds and three of their preamps: C2200, C42, and the C200. You can defineteley get it even better than with your MA6900, but to get a real improvement you have to upgrade to either C2200 or C200, and that's a lot of money. Being sick enough, I did it and bought the C200 (used, though). The one thing I found interesting was that the preamps changed the sound more than switching between several McIntosh power amps. I compared, e.g., the power amp section of the MA6500 integrated and the MC352. Sure enough, there was a difference, but much smaller than between the preamp-sections. So, if some day you still want to move up, you could easily buy another Mac-preamp and run it with the power amp section of the MA6900 for the time being

200 wpc of distortionless power into any impedance load across a flat frequency response curve.

An AWESOME phono section.

FANTASTIC controls (preamp) section.

Those BEAUTIFUL big blue meters.

Heck, it's even got a primo headphone section.

All that for $4.5k retail?! ABSOLUTELY! The 6900 is a keeper. Heirloom quality. Sixty years from now my grandchildren will enjoy it.
I compared the MA6500, the MA6900 and the C42/MC352. There was a definite improvement in sound quality between the MA6500 and the MA6900, but I was hard pressed to find much difference between the MA6900 integrated and the separates. Bottom line, the 6900 is an incredible integrated! Plus, as has been mentioned, you save on a pair of interconnects and a power cord!
This is an interesting question. As far as flexibility, it is a moot point as others said above.

As far as sound quality difference, I can relate to this first hand although with different models. A friend of mine has an MA6400 integrated from a few years back. He just loves it and had me audition it. I immediately began looking of one but to no good avail (I had to have it NOW and did not find one). I then bought the separates that make up the MA6400/6450: the C712 and MC7100. There are many reviews online about how awesome the MA6450 is but no one really says anything about the separate version. I borrowed the MA6400 I had first listened to and compared, head to head, with the separates and I COULD NOT hear a difference or tell them apart. The separates version in this case has a little more power but the sound quality is equally sublime. So, if space and extra cost are an issue, go with the MA6900. It is a heck of a deal compared to MC202+C42 and judging from my experience, they will sound identical (actually they are identical circuits so this is pretty much a given). They are simply beautiful pieces that make the most beautiful music I have heard.