This month, McIntosh will add a new integrated amplifier to its lineup. The MA252 is the company’s first hybrid integrated amp, combining a tube-based preamplifier stage with solid-state amplification. The preamplifier stage uses two 12AX7a and two 12AT7 vacuum tubes, while the output stage is a solid-state amplifier that delivers 100 watts per channel into eight ohms or 160 watts per channel into four ohms. This analog-only integrated amp feature four inputs (two unbalanced, one balanced, and one MM phono), as well as subwoofer and headphone outputs. The MA252’s MSRP will be $3,500.
McIntosh is proud to announce the MA252 Integrated Amplifier.
The MA252 Integrated Amplifier is the first hybrid integrated amplifier from McIntosh. 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.
The preamplifier stage uses two 12AX7a and two 12AT7 vacuum tubes housed inside stylish protective cages; the output stage is a direct coupled solid-state amplifier that delivers 100 watts per channel into eight-ohm speakers or 160 watts per channel into four-ohm speakers. An all-analog design, it comes with two unbalanced, one balanced and one Moving Magnet phono input. All four inputs can be given user-friendly names in order to simplify user control. Bass and treble tone controls help fine tune the music to one’s personal preferences. A full-range subwoofer output is included for use with a powered subwoofer to further enhance low frequencies.
The MA252 features our McIntosh Monogrammed Heatsinks, which are connected to advanced high current output transistors. These transistors eliminate the typical amplifier warm-up time so that the MA252 is in peak operating condition from the moment it’s turned on. A powerful control microprocessor is used for smooth system operation, along with some of the latest audio-grade circuit components that deliver the best possible sound.
Thanks to its solid-state output, the MA252 is our first product containing vacuum tubes to include our patented Power Guard technology. Power Guard 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 the speakers. If Power Guard is activated, the two vacuum tubes connected to the affected audio channel(s) will flash an amber color; they will return to their normal green color when the clipping has stopped.
Other McIntosh technologies found in the MA252 include Sentry Monitor, a High Drive headphone amplifier and gold-plated speaker binding posts. Input selection, bass, treble, tone bypass, balance and input offset levels can be adjusted using the front-panel knobs or the included remote control; all settings and input selection will be shown on the OLED display. The entire unit sits atop a beautiful polished stainless steel chassis with a classic McIntosh-styled die cast aluminum name badge attached to each side.
Pricing and Availability
Orders for the MA252 can now be placed with authorized McIntosh dealers, with shipping expected to begin in November. Suggested retail price (VAT, shipping and any customs duties related to current standards of individual countries are excluded): $3,500 USD.