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Mcintosh? - Page 2

post #16 of 48
I demo-ed some grados with the headphone out of one of their preamps and it was amazing - thoroughly so.
post #17 of 48
A lot of people often don't kow (self included until I heard them) that McIntosh makes speakers also ...and they are sweet too!
post #18 of 48
My dad has an old McIntosh system, pre-amp and 2x amps - lots of tubes (its been 15+ years since I helped him put them up on top of his closet) If he and my mom ever downsize house wise, I hope to put dibs on his system, and vinyl collection. The pre-amp is 70s clunky, but I bet the amps, retubed would be something very special.

McIntosh was once (not sure about current models) considered about the BEST Amp in the business. Of course we are talking speakers here, not dedicated headphone amps. On that note I need to bring some of my cans next time I visit him and give the pre-amp a listen.
post #19 of 48
Even on the Audio Asylum or the 'gon discussion boards, I rarely see McIntosh's name come up anymore for recommendations. They still make the rounds at the shows (THE, etc.) and I always enjoy looking at pictures of their gear for nostalgic reasons, but I personally think (totally IMO) that it has been a while since they've had a really breakthrough product.
They are still well known and respected as a manufacturer of solid well performing amplification and other audio gear.

I certainly wouldn't agree that they are the 'world's best' amp maker.
post #20 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by sonance
Even on the Audio Asylum or the 'gon discussion boards, I rarely see McIntosh's name come up anymore for recommendations. They still make the rounds at the shows (THE, etc.) and I always enjoy looking at pictures of their gear for nostalgic reasons, but I personally think (totally IMO) that it has been a while since they've had a really breakthrough product.
They are still well known and respected as a manufacturer of solid well performing amplification and other audio gear.
I have to say that I would agree. With the rise of Conrad Johnson and Audio Research in the 90s, Mac amps just don't get talked about. They just have not had the signature products like CJ and AR have had. Maybe it is really just a marketing thing. I don't know.
The Mac amps that I hear get talked about are always older ones, which lends to the nostalgic vibe. I mean I have known people that have modded old Mac amps where people believe after some mods, it is some of the best sounding tube gear you can buy.
post #21 of 48
Just remembered something interesting related to Mac gear...
If you guys saw The Departed, don't know if you guys know or not, but it was based on an Asian film called Infernal Affairs. Well one of the turning point scenes in each movie involved high end audio gear.

In Infernal Affairs it was in an audio shop over some big tube amps (don't recall what they were), where the two opposite moles meet. In The Departed Mac gear was used with headphones when the psychiatrist girlfriend listened to a CD about her mole boyfriend.

Anyways I just found it interesting the gear that they represented in The Departed vs Infernal Affairs and somewhat in the irony of the two very opposite representation of tube gear. So see, Macs maybe aren't that obscure, they made it into a pretty big movie.
post #22 of 48
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sonance
Even on the Audio Asylum or the 'gon discussion boards, I rarely see McIntosh's name come up anymore for recommendations. They still make the rounds at the shows (THE, etc.) and I always enjoy looking at pictures of their gear for nostalgic reasons, but I personally think (totally IMO) that it has been a while since they've had a really breakthrough product.
They are still well known and respected as a manufacturer of solid well performing amplification and other audio gear.

I certainly wouldn't agree that they are the 'world's best' amp maker.
That is kind of what I was thinking. But I wanted to make sure first, because of course I had no idea, I was just basing it on the fact that I have not seem them talked about.
post #23 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by sonance

I certainly wouldn't agree that they are the 'world's best' amp maker.

in my humble opinion, Mcintosh wouldn't even make it onto the shortlist of world's best amp makers. there are literally dozens of companies that would make it onto the list ahead of them. time seems to have passed them by.

OTOH, Nelson Pass would likely be on practically everyone's list of Top 5
Amplifier designers of all time. his more recent designs seem to capture the best of both tube and solid-state.


just an opinion.
post #24 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by cfmsp
in my humble opinion, Mcintosh wouldn't even make it onto the shortlist of world's best amp makers. there are literally dozens of companies that would make it onto the list ahead of them. time seems to have passed them by.
Respectfully ... disagree with your humble opinion. Check out the latest Stereophile rankings from October 2006. The MDA1000, C1000, MC501, MC275(IV), C200 make the Class A list.

But why start an argument? You say tomatoe and I say tomaato. Have you ever seen and heard a full McIntosh setup of the current gear ... trust me ... very impressive and does not bow in any shape or form to other contenders. If someone prefers Pass, ML or CJ or ARC instead of Mac... that's fine, but chock it up to individual tastes ... and not someone being deaf, dumb, clueless, or not in fashion. Sure McIntosh became very low-key back in the '90s ... but they have been doing some really kick-ass stuff of late. I don't think time has passed them by in the least.

But ... getting back to the original question ... yes I've tried K1000s with my MA6200 and an C712/MC240 combo. I sold off my K1000s but do currently use AKG K340s (modified) with my MA6200. The K1000s and K340s sounded great. One added benefit of the older preamps is the variable loudness control, which warms up the bass on the K1000s. The K1000s would be a great match with any McIntosh amp IMO ... if you have a taste for Mac. I sold off my Wheatfield HA-2 years ago (Single-ended uber headphone amp) because it did not sound much better than my McIntosh MA6200.

There is also a McIntosh forum over on AudioKarma ... has been going strong for nearly 5 years.
post #25 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by sonance
Even on the Audio Asylum or the 'gon discussion boards, I rarely see McIntosh's name come up anymore for recommendations. They still make the rounds at the shows (THE, etc.) and I always enjoy looking at pictures of their gear for nostalgic reasons, but I personally think (totally IMO) that it has been a while since they've had a really breakthrough product.
They are still well known and respected as a manufacturer of solid well performing amplification and other audio gear.

I certainly wouldn't agree that they are the 'world's best' amp maker.
Hmmm .... I guessed you missed the MC501 SS monoblocks, the MC275 tubed stereo amp and the C1000 Preamp system. All pretty modern in their build if not their looks.
post #26 of 48

Sorry to revive this thread from 4 years ago but I have a question regarding this...

 

I know the K-1000's are mentioned but what about other phones? I would prefer to spend money on a system that could drive headphones and if I ever wanted to then a set up for speakers.

 

Instead of looking at dac's, headphone tube amps, etc etc could I not look for a McIntosh MC275 or a similar amp and use it as an amplifier for headphones?

 

It would make more sense to have a system that can be the best of both worlds. I know it will not be the "best" for speakers nor headphones, but I mean would it still be in a high level if used for headphones in comparison to a high level dedicated headphone amp? Its hard justifying a $1000 headphone amp if speaker amps can do 95% quality of a dedicated headphone amp.

 

I hope that makes sense. Any light on this subject or reading material on previous discussions (I searched but mainly around Mcintosh related threads) would be appreciated.

 

Thanks,

 

Austin

post #27 of 48
Quote:
Originally Posted by eertelppa View Post


Instead of looking at dac's, headphone tube amps, etc etc could I not look for a McIntosh MC275 or a similar amp and use it as an amplifier for headphones?

 

It would make more sense to have a system that can be the best of both worlds. I know it will not be the "best" for speakers nor headphones, but I mean would it still be in a high level if used for headphones in comparison to a high level dedicated headphone amp? Its hard justifying a $1000 headphone amp if speaker amps can do 95% quality of a dedicated headphone amp.

 

 

im thinking the same way,

please share comparison experience home system vs head amp to drive the HP
 

post #28 of 48

It's possible, but you might not want to.  First, keep in mind that most headphone amps put out around 300mW to 1W of power, while something like a MC275 puts out 75W of power.  That's like trying to get a drink of water out of a high-pressure fire hose.  You can, but it's not an efficient way to do it.

 

You might be able to put together some voltage-dropping resistors to lower the output.  That's how receivers and integrated amps usually power a headphone jack.

 

Some of those work well and sometimes they don't.  Another issue is noise - speaker amps don't have to be perfect since you won't hear low-level hums unless your ear is on the speaker.  But with headphones, you ear is always on the speaker and you will hear the hum or other noise.

 

If you want to pull double-duty with components, it's a lot easier to have a preamp that doubles as a headphone amp than a power amp doubling as a headphone amp.  Many headphone amps can be configured as a preamp, so it would make more sense to use one of those and connect a separate power amp for the speakers.

post #29 of 48

I too have demo'd some McIntosh integrated amps, and though I was floored by what they did with speakers, I wasn't very impressed with the headphone outs. I couldn't tell you exact model #s with any certainty but they were relatively recent models i'd say. sp70.

post #30 of 48

Thanks for the insight Uncle Erik, Answered my question to the T and something I had been wondering since seeing all of the headphone amps for sell and all the various models and companies and endless amounts of choices/options.

 

Now to continue the search for a local meet and subsequently a tube amp/diy tube amp/hybrid/something with tubes that is an amplifier.

 

Thanks again, take care.

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