Upgrading Hi Fi System to McIntosh - Recommendations...?

paulMaryland

New Member
Nov 11, 2018
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Hi All,

After retiring I'm now home more and looking to upgrade my 20 year old HiFi system to listen to classical, jazz, blues, rock and vocals.... I have a pretty basic set up and I'm not very knowledgeable about all the gear and electronics that go into good sound, but I am interested in upgrading to a McIntosh amp and would love your thoughts recommendations on how to go to the next level!

The number of different McIntosh models and the long history of the company make it difficult to know what I'm looking for...

Here are the basics about what I'm working with..

1) Space - A long, narrow living room/dinning room about 60 ft by 15 / 20 ft. Hardwood floors with area carpets, no drapes, lots of glass on one side, looking out on the Chesapeake Bay :)

2) Current System -

SPEAKERS: Canton Karat 30 Speakers (4) and a Sub Woofer. These are 4 Ohm bookshelf speakers.

AMP RECEIVER: Yamaha 5230 100 watts per channel Home Theater Receiver.

https://www.cnet.com/products/yamaha-yamaha-htr-5230/specs/

Speakers are connected as Channels A and B.

CD PLAYER: Died, need to replace...

TURNTABLE: Sony... need to upgrade the phono cartridge. Had an old Thorens that I inherited from my father but motor went out on it.

3) Budget: If I can, I would like to keep my outlay to about $2 - $2.5K for a used McIntosh Amplifier.

Basically my thought is as follows:

A) My 4 speakers and sub do a good job of covering the space, but I think that replacing the Yamaha with a McIntosh would improve the sound quality overall, and is a good investment for the next 20 + years of listening pleasure.

B) After I replace the Amp, depending on the sound and budget, I would consider getting larger floor standing speakers to replace the Canton Karat 30's, but it depends on how they sound with a McIntosh Amp!

6) I know I need to replace the turntable with a better quality phono cartridge. I have a fair collection of vinyl records from the 60's and 70's.


QUESTION -

Given that I can listen to radio anywhere by streaming from Tune In, I don't need an integrated amplifier.

And I don't need/want a home theater system.

I just want good, clean sound from an amplifier that will drive the 4 Canton 4 ohm speakers and woofer I currently have, and potentially floor speakers I get in the future.

I would love to add a stereo equalizer but I guess that's another piece of equipment and expense?

What McIntosh Amp would you recommend in with a budget of up to 2.5K (or less)?

Any suggestions where I could hear it and buy one? I live in Maryland, near Annapolis.

Many thanks in advance,

Paul aka McIntosh Newbie :)
 

LL21

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Dec 26, 2010
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paulMaryland

New Member
Nov 11, 2018
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Thanks LL21, I looked at that link..

THe MA 6300 but that's an integrated amplifier, with stuff for DVD, TV, that I don't need or want. Wouldn't I just be paying more for that, when all i want is Audio not Video inputs..?

Paul
 

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
13,280
1,640
698
Fair enough...i was not sure i you wanted a complete swap for your receiver amp. I looked at the bigger, more expensive integrateds from McIntosh which might suit your tastes and goals better...but they do cost more retail. So you'd have to dig to find one 2nd hand. Setting aside finding one...i do wonder if something like the MA8000 or 9000 would be on paper what you want in terms of quality, specs, simplicity and all the integration you need (digital, analog) since it has DA1 digital DAC as well as (i think) phono stage.
 

paulMaryland

New Member
Nov 11, 2018
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0
1
66
LL21 - I'm trying to go back to the days before home theater took over the design and marketing of audio equipment... so definitely a used McIntosh unit, that has clean sound and the inputs for a legacy setup based on inputs for the phonograph and CD.

Digital is great, but there's always that sacrifice due to the compression, so I'm looking more for the right legacy system that would fit my needs :)

Hope that explains better!
 

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
13,280
1,640
698
Got it! Will post if I see anything or something else comes to mind.
 

Addicted to hifi

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Sep 8, 2020
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Australia
Hi All,

After retiring I'm now home more and looking to upgrade my 20 year old HiFi system to listen to classical, jazz, blues, rock and vocals.... I have a pretty basic set up and I'm not very knowledgeable about all the gear and electronics that go into good sound, but I am interested in upgrading to a McIntosh amp and would love your thoughts recommendations on how to go to the next level!

The number of different McIntosh models and the long history of the company make it difficult to know what I'm looking for...

Here are the basics about what I'm working with..

1) Space - A long, narrow living room/dinning room about 60 ft by 15 / 20 ft. Hardwood floors with area carpets, no drapes, lots of glass on one side, looking out on the Chesapeake Bay :)

2) Current System -

SPEAKERS: Canton Karat 30 Speakers (4) and a Sub Woofer. These are 4 Ohm bookshelf speakers.

AMP RECEIVER: Yamaha 5230 100 watts per channel Home Theater Receiver.

https://www.cnet.com/products/yamaha-yamaha-htr-5230/specs/

Speakers are connected as Channels A and B.

CD PLAYER: Died, need to replace...

TURNTABLE: Sony... need to upgrade the phono cartridge. Had an old Thorens that I inherited from my father but motor went out on it.

3) Budget: If I can, I would like to keep my outlay to about $2 - $2.5K for a used McIntosh Amplifier.

Basically my thought is as follows:

A) My 4 speakers and sub do a good job of covering the space, but I think that replacing the Yamaha with a McIntosh would improve the sound quality overall, and is a good investment for the next 20 + years of listening pleasure.

B) After I replace the Amp, depending on the sound and budget, I would consider getting larger floor standing speakers to replace the Canton Karat 30's, but it depends on how they sound with a McIntosh Amp!

6) I know I need to replace the turntable with a better quality phono cartridge. I have a fair collection of vinyl records from the 60's and 70's.


QUESTION -

Given that I can listen to radio anywhere by streaming from Tune In, I don't need an integrated amplifier.

And I don't need/want a home theater system.

I just want good, clean sound from an amplifier that will drive the 4 Canton 4 ohm speakers and woofer I currently have, and potentially floor speakers I get in the future.

I would love to add a stereo equalizer but I guess that's another piece of equipment and expense?

What McIntosh Amp would you recommend in with a budget of up to 2.5K (or less)?

Any suggestions where I could hear it and buy one? I live in Maryland, near Annapolis.

Many thanks in advance,

Paul aka McIntosh Newbie :)
How did you go? What did you end up with?
 

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