McIntosh MC1502

McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier

On the occasion of the company’s 70th birthday, McIntosh Laboratory Inc. presented, among other products, the McIntosh MC2152 Limited Edition 70th Anniversary Vacuum Tube Amplifier. This will now be replaced by the new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier.


In 2019, the U.S. high-end hi-fi manufacturer McIntosh Laboratory Inc. celebrated a remarkable anniversary, namely its 70th birthday. As is customary on such outstanding occasions, the company presented a number of solutions that were entirely dedicated to the celebrations, including the McIntosh MC2152 AC 70th Anniversary 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier.

At first glance, the new design of the McIntosh MC2152 AC 70th Anniversary 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier caught the eye, as it was still immediately recognizable as a solution from the US high-end specialists, but with a much fresher, more modern design concept. The McIntosh MC2152 AC 70th Anniversary 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier was based on no less than eight KT88 glass bulbs, which were used as power amplifier tubes. For the driver tubes, the developers relied on four 12AX7A/ 12AT7. All of this not only ensured an outstanding appearance, but first and foremost a rich performance as the crowning glory of a high-end hi-fi chain.

Now the outstanding McIntosh MC2152 AC 70th Anniversary 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier is to be replaced by the new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier, according to the US-American high-end hi-fi manufacturer McIntosh Laboratory Inc. The reason for this is simple: the innovation is not as profound as it first appears. The new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier is similar to the Anniversary Edition model from a technical point of view, according to the manufacturer, but has a design that more closely resembles regular solutions and can therefore be more easily combined with the various systems from McIntosh Laboratory Inc.

“The new MC1502 has identical audio specifications and sound reproduction performance of the heralded MC2152 but in a more customary McIntosh design.

…this is the company’s rationale in a nutshell, and it is on record that the new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier is based on the timeless design of the McIntosh MC275 Vacuum Tube Amplifier. Since the new model simply has twice the power of the MC257, namely 150 watts per channel instead of 75 watts, and is also much more massive, the McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier can even be called the big brother of the MC257.

The MC1502 is powered by eight KT88 output vacuum tubes, with four assigned to each stereo channel. It also has eight small-signal tubes, consisting of four 12AX7A and four 12AT7 vacuum tubes; two of these vacuum tubes are assigned to each audio channel. The 12AX7A vacuum tubes are for the balanced and input amplifiers, while the 12AT7 tubes are for the voltage and driver amplifiers. All vacuum tubes are equipped with a 12 gauge stainless steel wire cage with black powder coating.

The large KT88s are located at the top behind the smaller 12AX7A and 12AT7 vacuum tubes, with these eight smaller tubes glowing green.

Of course, the new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier has all the technical features that have distinguished amplifiers from the US-Americans so far, especially the so-called autoformer technology. This technology is supposed to guarantee that the McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier, as already described, delivers twice 150 watts, regardless of whether the loudspeakers have an impedance of 2, 4 or 8 ohms.

Also on board is the Sentry Monitor technology for monitoring the output current, which immediately switches off the amplifier as soon as safety limits are exceeded, thus effectively preventing damage. McIntosh Laboratory Inc. takes it for granted that not only the circuitry itself but also the connections meet the highest standards, especially with a solution of this kind. For example, the company leads the so-called solid RCA loudspeaker connections, which are supposed to provide the best possible hold for the cables and guarantee loss-free signal transmission.

Both balanced and unbalanced inputs are available to guarantee flexible integration as the central powerhouse of the hi-fi chain. The patented Solid Cinch speaker terminals are designed to ensure a secure connection to the speaker systems. The so-called power control technology allows the automatic switching on and off of other connected McIntosh components, such as preamplifiers, CD players, turntables or streaming solutions.

The new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier measures an impressive 46.4 cm in width, 26 cm in height and 53.3 cm in depth, making it no less than 53.3 kg.

The new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier will probably be available from specialist dealers from October 2020, whereby one must allow for a recommended retail price of € 13,480.

Getting to the point

Now the outstanding amplifier McIntosh MC2152 AC 70th Anniversary 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier, which was presented last year on the occasion of the 70th birthday of McIntosh Laboratory Inc., is to be replaced by the new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier, according to the American high-end hi-fi manufacturer McIntosh Laboratory Inc. The reason for this is simple: the innovation is not as profound as it first appears. The new McIntosh MC1502 2-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier is similar to the Anniversary Edition model from a technical point of view, according to the manufacturer, but has a design that more closely resembles regular solutions and can therefore be more easily combined with the various systems from McIntosh Laboratory Inc.

Manufacturer:McIntosh Laboratory Inc.
Distribution:Audio Components GmbH
Price:€ 13.480,-

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