#168212  by Evermore
 Wed Sep 16, 2020 10:07 am
Hello all!
I'm looking at various McIntosh amps to find one to buy. I can't go full on MC-2300 and am looking at models in the Mc-2150 to 2100 range.
With these vintage amps would generally I expect to need restoration work unless the seller is stating that the amp has been serviced in the last few years or so?

Also, do lower wattage McIntosh amps sound significantly different than the big 2300?

I'll be playing through newly reconed e-120's and I'm very interested in running the impedance mismatch that Jerry ran.

Will a lower wattage McIntosh amp be able to do this mismatch setup correctly?
I've never played through one and any advice would be greatly greatly appreciated. Thanks so much guys
 #168227  by Gr8fulCadi
 Thu Sep 17, 2020 8:38 am
Never played an mc2300 so I can’t help ya out there, but I have an mc250 and an mc2100. Both sound amazing and both can handle a mismatch. But the output taps on those models don’t go as low as the Mc2300. The mc2300 has output taps starting at .5, 1, 2, 4, 8, 16. The mc2100/mc250 etc have taps of 4, 8, 16.

As far as service, I have done full recaps on mine and if amps that age have not had a recap, well then it’s time. The amp will still work without a recap but caps only have so much life to them, it’s inevitable.

So doing research as to what type of “service” was done exactly is important in finding out that info. Caps alone cost anywhere from $150-$200. The big filter caps are roughly $55 each for the 2100/2105 and $100 EACH for the mc250. The mc250 was more expensive to recap than the 2100. Also the multicap can should be replaced along with the caps on the boards.
 #168235  by Searing75
 Thu Sep 17, 2020 6:05 pm
Jerry ran his three 8ohm speakers, for a total 2ohm load, off of the 4ohm Tap. So, on my MC50, I run one 8ohm K120 off of the 16ohm Tap. Also, you are gonna want a lower wattage amp so that you can push it into soft clipping. Jerry did this on the 2300, It he could play real loud in stadiums. I don’t know why you need two E120’s, but if you must, and I were you, I would get an MC250 and run each on the respective 16ohm tap of each channel. Well, I would really get an MC50 and run one E120 off of its 16ohm Tap. Plenty loud, and if ya need to be louder then mic the cab through the PA.
Also, if the electrolytics are original, then they will need to be replaced.
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 #168236  by Budman
 Thu Sep 17, 2020 7:02 pm
For what its worth i bought a mc250 from a estate it was all original a couple small dents some minor rust on the chrome ,I could probably polish it up but iam afraid to polish the writing off,and dust bunnies on the heat sinks . I cleaned up the contacts and it worked fine had a scratchy vol on the mono side I talked to a repair tech at McIntosh he said if it worked fine dont worry about a recap and to use deoxit on the volume pot ,after cleaning the pot it sounded amazing i still play it all the time never modded or recapped I run one e120 8 ohm at 16ohm tap on amp and get it to clip sweetly i keep the amp cranked at least half way and sms pre at 10oclock and use guitar vol as needed you can't go wrong with a McIntosh unless it has been abused or blown up they are pretty tough
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 #168237  by Jon S.
 Fri Sep 18, 2020 8:49 am
If there's anything I've learned from all of my years of playing, it's that it's just as foolhardy to buy more than amp you need and can reasonably use as to lack the necessary volume and headroom.

Are you playing live at large venues? If not: MC50.

I never turned mine up much past half even when I was still doing outdoor gigs. At home, I don't even use it now - I like how my DCM200L sounds at low volumes better.
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 #168275  by strumminsix
 Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:07 am
Ty to dig around. The bigger Macs had these Sentry circuits that were speculated to play a part in the JG tone. The smaller ones didn't have that.
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 #168277  by Jon S.
 Mon Sep 21, 2020 8:55 am
strumminsix wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:07 am
Ty to dig around. The bigger Macs had these Sentry circuits that were speculated to play a part in the JG tone. The smaller ones didn't have that.
Sorry but this is incorrect information.

I'm looking at the MC50 owners manual right now. The MC50 has the Sentry Monitoring Circuit.

Image
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 #168278  by strumminsix
 Mon Sep 21, 2020 9:04 am
Jon S. wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 8:55 am
strumminsix wrote:
Mon Sep 21, 2020 6:07 am
Ty to dig around. The bigger Macs had these Sentry circuits that were speculated to play a part in the JG tone. The smaller ones didn't have that.
Sorry but this is incorrect information.

I'm looking at the MC50 owners manual right now. The MC50 has the Sentry Monitoring Circuit.

Image
Maybe I'm thinking of the cheaper ones not smaller. It's been a few years.
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 #168279  by Evermore
 Mon Sep 21, 2020 9:31 am
This is all wonderful information, I'm very grateful for this.
I play a stereo rig in the studio and will have e120's in separate cabs each with a 421 on it. The 421's will go into my UAD ApolloX with a Neve mic pre plugin in unison mode. I expect the cabs will likely live in the vocal booth because they may be too loud in the main room.

I reckon it'll be another 6 or 7 weeks at least before all the pieces are in place. The McIntosh will likely be the last piece of the puzzle. I have a solid state QSC UAS 850 that I can use once the speaker cabs arrive. I'll take the plunge on the McIntosh once I've rebounded from this recent round of gear acquisition. I'm so thankful for your input.
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