MCINTOSH MA252 HYBRID INTEGRATED AMPLIFIER
McIntosh Labs is still most-loved by audiophiles thanks to nearly 70 years in the business, but it's a new generation that is lusting after the infamous McIntosh 'glow'.
For a brand rich in history and prestige, it's not one to rest on its laurels. In fact, McIntosh is a shining example of an innovative company that continues to evolve and invents products that are ideally suited to next-gen customers.
The recently announced MA252 is such a product. An integrated amplifier that is iconically McIntosh, but the first 'hybrid' amplifier the company has ever produced.
"Taking retro design cues from the legendary McIntosh MC275 Vacuum Tube Amplifier, the MA252 combines the best of vacuum tube and solid state circuit design to create an amplifier that’s both visually and sonically stunning. "
Two 12AX7 and two 12AT7 vacuum tubes inside stylish protective cages feature prominently in the preamplifier stage, while the output stage is a direct coupled solid-state amplifier that delivers 100 Watts per channel into 8 Ohm speakers or 160 Watts per channel into 4 Ohm speakers.
An all analog affair, the MA252 features two unbalanced inputs and one balanced input, plus a Moving Magnet phono input for vinyl lovers.
Appealing to the tech-savvy all of the inputs can be renamed to a more user-friendly tag which will correspond to the input chosen and displayed on the OLED display.
There's also bass and treble tone controls plus a full range subwoofer output for use with a powered subwoofer to further enhance low frequencies.
McIntosh's own Power Guard technology monitors the output signal for signs of overdriving and "makes real-time micro adjustments to the input signal to prevent harsh sounding clipping that could potentially damage your speakers."
Bringing a bit of high-tech to McIntosh, if Power Guard is activated, the vacuum tubes connected to the affected audio channel will flash an amber color until the clipping has stopped.
There's also a built-in high-drive headphone amplifier for those late night listening sessions.
The MA252 is a highly-capable integrated amplifier that builds on the McIntosh 70-year legacy while adding state-of-the-art technology.
The McIntosh MA252 will sell locally for $6995 RRP.
For more information visit McIntosh.
StereoNET's Founder & Publisher and still buried deep in the review room auditioning everything from docks to soundbars, amplifiers and headphones. Marc is also the founder of the annual International HiFi Show.
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