McIntosh is one of the most dependable brand names when it comes to high-end audio systems. For years the brand has been recognized by audiophiles throughout the world as equipment that delivers clear and consistent quality in music. McIntosh is probably best known for its amplifiers and preamps, but the company produces many other components and parts for stereo and home theatre.
What are the specs for the McIntosh C 2200?
- Frequency response:
- 20Hz to 20kHz
- Total harmonic distortion:
- Input sensitivity:
- 4.4mV (MM), 450mV (line)
- Signal to noise ratio:
- 80dB (MM), 93dB (line)
- 8V (Pre out Max)
- Valve complement:
- 4 x 12X7A, 4 x 12AT7A
- 17.5 x 7.6 x 20 inches
- 27 lbs
What else to know about the McIntosh C 2200?
"I found using this preamplifier a pure pleasure. I welcomed the Bass and Treble controls, which offer 12dB of boost or cut at 30Hz and 10kHz, respectively. The tone controls are effectively out of the circuit at the center detente position. There's also a Tone Bypass button. There's a practical reason for this switch, says Larry. ""You can put in some bass boost, for instance, and A/B back and forth between Tone Bypass to see if the boost is what you want.""
There's also a feature that, as far as I know, is unique to McIntosh: A programmable feature called Autotone can memorize whether you want the tone controls on or off for each output. Autotone even remembers the bass and treble settings for the particular output. Need some treble cut with CDs or DVDs? Some bass cut with LPs? No problem. I'm not sure I'd ever use Autotone, but who knows?
I probably wouldn't use Pass Through, either, but I can imagine some audiophiles doing so—especially those who want to enjoy their audiophile two-channel purity and their surround-sound home theater, too. You engage Pass Through by programming this mode as one of your inputs. The C2200 then passes the left and right channels to your left and right front speakers. In other words, your surround-sound processor will control volume, source selection, etc.
Other features include the ability to drive multiple power amplifiers. You can have the C2200 control the main power amp in your listening room, for instance, and a separate amp in a room nearby, as explained in the owner's manual (downloadable as a pdf file from the McIntosh website). Better yet, have your dealer demonstrate.
I loved many of the C2200's convenience features. When you run a power-control cable from the C2200 to your Mac power amp, you can have the preamp turn the power amp on and off. Nice for lazy folks like me. You can also have your preamp turn on your Mac CD player and/or tuner. The same remote control that controls your C2200 can control your Mac CD player and tuner. McIntosh customers do like their comforts.
Don't let this panoply of features put you off. I found that they never intruded—they were there if I needed them, but weren't in my way if I didn't. A preamp, especially, should be about convenience, no? It's a control center, after all. Once I had everything hooked up, I found the C2200 easy and intuitive to use.
The McIntosh C2200 was one of the finest line-stage preamps I have ever used, and far and away the most user-friendly in terms of features. I don't think you'll find a better tubed line-stage for $4500—the C2200 merits a Class A recommendation for this reason alone. As for LPs, the C2200's onboard phono section may be all you need. It wouldn't be fair to deny the unit as a whole a Class A rating because McIntosh has included this more-than-acceptable phono stage for ""free.""
""I'd put this preamp in my own system,"" said Roger Stockholm with pride.
So would I. In fact, I plan on keeping the review sample to use with my MC2102 tube amp. This new McIntosh tube preamp was well worth the wait of nearly 40 years.
And yes, I had been waiting all that time." - Stereophile
Brief History of McIntosh
Long mapped-to Binghamton New York – the current headquarters and manufacturing center for McIntosh Labs – not many people know the brand was originally launched outside of the Nation’s Capital in Silver Spring Maryland, in 1949. In 1956, the brand built their original facility in New York, according to the official brand website.
Other McIntosh Products We Often Buy
Typically, StereoBuyers purchases mostly used amplifiers, especially the vintage amps and high-end McIntosh models such as the MC202 or MC252, and the C220 preamp, for example. We have also purchased many pre-owned tuners from McIntosh over the recent years, including the MR67 and MR78 models, for example.
StereoBuyers has purchased tens of thousands worth McIntosh brand equipment since 2014, with individual buys ranging from $100 to well over $50,000. If you are moving, ready to upgrade, or have McIntosh equipment you do not or will not be using, why not contact us today to find out if it is worth good money?
If you are interested in selling your used McIntosh equipment to us in the greater NYC area or Colorado, please click here to fill out a Free Quote Form and we will get back to you. If we agree on terms, we come to meet you where you want, and pay cash.
The following images show actual McIntosh equipment purchased by StereoBuyers.