more of a good thing. a bit more viseral in the bass on somw speakers, otherwise the same neutral character.
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Check over on the McIntosh forum on AudioKarma. I think you will get varying opinions of the sonic differences.
One consideration I had when trying to decide between these two amps was that the 402 delivers 100 amps of current versus the 50 amps with the 252. With my speakers, that made a difference.
I should start by saying Ive been a long time Mac fan, but...
I owned the MC352 and the MC402 at the same time and had the opportunity to A/B them side by side. Easily the 402 was the winner, with the 352 sounding very congested in comparison. In addition, while I really enjoyed the speed and accuracy of the 402, I sold it several months back due to the economy. (Needless to say I sold off the 352 first.)
I replaced my trusty MC402 with a tube amp from VTL. The ST150; an unused dealer demo that cost me half the price of what I sold the 402 for... go figure.
I cant say enough good things about the VTL. It drives my Dynaudio Special 25s just as well as the mac did and perhaps even better. Additionally the 6550 tubes opened up the midrange like never before, without sacrificing the low bass control.
You may want to consider other options as the MC402 is a bit pricey for what you get. That being said the 402 is a very respectable amp.