McIntosh MC152 vs MC162


Dear Mac owners, can you give me an idea if there is any substantial sonic differences btw MC152 and MC162? Technical data of both doesn't look far apart, while price wise MC162 is twice less expensive, which makes it twice more attractive.
vad58
The 162 is pretty old, I would say 20 years since it was made. It goes back to the days when Clarion owned McIntosh and they offered a number of products that were a step back from the front line. The one way that they kept 5he cost down was not using the autoformer output stage and not dual balanced circuitry. The 152 is a current product and does employ both dual balanced circuitry and autoformer output stage. I don’t recall the specs of the 162 but one tell tale spec is the weight. The new 152 weighs in at 75 pounds which is heavy for a small amp. This weight is attributed to the hundreds of feet of copper in the autoformers. The new 152 will sound much better than the 162 for a number of reasons, but the two listed are primary contributors.
Thanx, Theo, for the detailed answer. I wonder if you can suggest a better power amp then MC152 for my 3.5K budget? I use Mac C22 pre.
   As a long-time owner of many McIntosh components, I concur with theo. What power amp can you get for $3,500? You could look for an older but in very good condition Mac amp with autoformers. I use a MC2205 in a Martin Logan system. I am using the C2300 preamp.  I also have a MC2255. Don't be put off by their ages...if they have been upgraded, you won't be unhappy. 
vad58: I think Scorpio makes a good point. With Mc amps, used are usually in very good shape and can last for years. At your price point you might find a good used MC402, I have owned mine for years and it still sounds good. I know it may be more power than you need, but it has the quad balance and autoformers. There are some Mc amps that have autoformers but not the quad balanced e.g. MC252, you will want research that before you buy. Good luck.
Find a used MC352, this is a special amp and is in your price range.


Matt M
I can't than you enough for sharing your knowledge and experience with me.
Take a look at Audio Classics inventory of preowned Mac gear. Terry DeWick, who is a Mac repair guru also has a website linked from his that sells used gear Terry has checked out. I bought an mc250 from an Ebay seller, had Terry review and upgrade it before shipping to me. Its been great for5 or 6 years. Probably will trade up next year. If you don't lime it you can usually sell it and recover most of your investment. 
Thanx joekapahulu, I know about Audio Classics. Several years ago I've bought from them Mac MC275 and it was in like new condition. I used it for quite some time but due to my listening habits came to conclusion that I prefer SS power amp. I made this switch and honestly speaking quite satisfied with results, but that ansatiable audio bug of ours force me to look for smth better, and Mac SS looks like a first natural choice.
May I know what is the merits of employing dual balanced circuitry on the design of the power amp? 
MC162 is an older amp, it does not have autformers, lightweight, at half the weight of MC152.
MC152 is a current amp with autoformers, it is rated at 150W per channel but will deliver 200W. The new price is $4500, used ones, B rated, at Audio classics are listed at $3500 give and take.

No contest between the two, the MC152 wins hands down.
I would agree with the others who recommend the MC152.  Not only does it have the autoformers, it have both single ended and XLR inputs, more up to date circuitry (I believe the new generation output transistors), and would most-likely have much less mileage on it!
...not to mention the 152 has plenty of headroom. Right up there with the best of the McIntosh amps. I have one in my office rig and fully enjoy the sound. 152/C47 with 805 d3’s. Hard combo to beat in a small space.