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Would this make a cool amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by David Jayne, Apr 4, 2009.


  1. My Dad gave me this, used to use it for the old 'HiFi' at the house. Says it worked until removed and placed in storage. Anyone know how I'd make up, or buy, an appropriate preamp for it? Dad says he though it was about 50 watts-that oughta crank pretty good, no? I know almost nothing about tube amps, except not to power it up without a load. There's a good guy in town I'll give it to for a tune-up. Worthwhile? Your thoughts?
    DSC01126.
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  2. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    Anything Macintosh and tubes is highly desireable and valuable.
    It is a low powered mono amp that has the potential to have exceptional tone
    DO NOT let just anybody work on this; should be a trained audiopile tech who will strive to use proper and period correct parts where necessary.
    It's moe valuable untouched and broken, than repaired incorrectly
    I have tweked Dyncao and Heath A5's as old tube hifi amps; they run reasonably hot, are not the most accurate sounding, but have an amazing sound.
    .02
     
  3. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    I agree, folks are searching for these amps worldwide. If you put it up on ebay you could well garner enough money to buy yourself a first class rig. I would estimate $1K+

    Paul
     
  4. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX
    I guess it depends on if you want to use a $1000 - $1500 Mono McIntosh amp as a "bass amp".

    It might sound good, but I wouldn't use it as a bass amp.

    If you "do" get it worked on, do NOT just give it to any old tech. They can destroy the amps value. Let a tech who specializes in high end hifi like the McIntosh stuff work on it, that way he can replace faulty parts (like filter caps) with the correct parts - period correct, brand correct, etc.
     
  5. MIJ-VI

    MIJ-VI Banned Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    Hi dmusic148.

    Two points:

    1) Tube amps are dangerous to tinker with (unless you're a qualified tech) because after they've been powered up, their filter caps can hold a charge powerful enough to KILL a person!

    2) That McIntosh tube power amp is a piece of audiophile gear from yesteryear. If you shop it around carefully, you may be able to sell it for enough dough to buy a half decent bass amp.

    Please do some research on it in order to find out ~ what it is worth before trying to sell it.
     
  6. Thanks. Yes, I know they can be dangerous-I'm not gonna fiddle with it myself. And I have plenty of bass gear, this is just a project idea for the heck of it, I don't want to sell it.
     
  7. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX

    Do not at ALL COSTS - alter it. You will be sorry later on.

    You could try using a bass preamp with it like the Sansamp, Radial, etc to see how you like the tone though. Still, if you do that, be SURE that you have a speaker load connected AT ALL TIMES and that it is the proper load.
     
  8. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    That is a MC30 that was made from 1954 to 1963, and put out 30 watts rms. Nice in it's day but better as a collectible nowadays at least as far as using for a bass amp.
     
  9. Brick Top

    Brick Top

    Dec 7, 2008
    Michigan
    Edited cause I missed the samll detail that it's a mono.

    You could always repair it and use it for a center channel amp in a HT setup.

    Cheers,
    BT
     
  10. please don't ruin this amp it doesn't have enough power to be used as a live amp and it would be much better to use it as a stereo.
     
  11. Yes, thanks, I know. It won't leave the house.
     
  12. BassmanPaul

    BassmanPaul Gold Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2007
    Toronto Ontario Canada
    Problem with this idea is that in order to make a stereo you need two of these. That means you have to hunt and pay $1K+ for a second. Far better to pass it on to someone who will love it and listen to it than have it sit in storage and rot. Far too many classic tube amps, both HiFi and MI, have died like that. ALL amplifiers have to operate in order for them to stay healthy. Please don't let that happen to this one!

    Back in the UK in the late Sixties, I bought a Leak TL50 50W HiFi power amp for 5GBP. I built a pre-amp for it based on the Fender Bassman but powered from the pre-amp socket of the amp. Through a slant front 100W Marshall cabinet it made a wonderful bass amp. BUT that was then and not today where there are so many better options.

    Paul
     
  13. You don't want that old junk! Send it to me :hyper:
    Why can't I find this stuff? Oh yeah I live in the desert now :bawl:
     
  14. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Cali Intergalactic Mind Space - always on the edge
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    +1
    After you get it checked out and up to speed, IMO, with a nice preamp, it would be cool as a practice/recording rig. The "ultimate" practice/recording rig. Throw in a 31 band e.q. and you'd be set. Maybe use a nice full range 1x15/mid/horn cab. Depends on what you like. Just don't sell it.

    You might want to look into getting it insured for full value as a collectible, which usually isn't covered in a standard home owner's policy.

    You can get the service manual/owner's manual/schematic on ebay: http://cgi.ebay.ca/MCINTOSH-SERVICE...ItemQQimsxZ20090312?IMSfp=TL090312129001r5140
     
  15. Dark Horse

    Dark Horse Supporting Member

    Jul 31, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Oh, and don't just "turn it on". If it hasn't been powered up in a while, you'll want to power it up slowly with a variac.
     
  16. Jim C

    Jim C Is that what you meant to play or is this jazz? Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    +1,000
    And if you do find another, there is no saying that the two amps will have similar tonalities due to component aging or previous repairs.
    Took me ages to find a second Heath A5 that sounded anything like the first one.
    BTW, trhe output transformer is the big money componenet in these and at 30 watts, this is more suited to audiofile use tha rock and roll. With that said, my Dynas Stereo 70 (35 watts of tweaked tube goodness) sounds decent with high effeciency speakers; not crazy loud though

    If it were me I would:
    * Put it on a shelf and admire a fantastic piece of audio history
    * Search for the RIGHT repair guy (call Steve at Angela Intruments, if he isn't comfortable with the restoration he will know who the guru is) for restoration and have a cool mono rig
    * Find the insane Mac buyer who is looking for this model

    Chances are it probably needs some work if it hasn't been turned on in years

    Good Luck
     
  17. That's kind of where I'm going here. Thanks a lot for that link.
     
  18. edwinhurwitz

    edwinhurwitz Supporting Member

    May 13, 2003
    Boulder, CO
    Endorsing Artist: DR Strings, SMS
    I have two of these. They are great amps with a very wide and flat frequency response for a tube amp. They are in a different league from Heath, EICO, Dynaco, etc. and were used in industrial applications as well as hifi. I love them for a small studio bass amp. I use mine with a Sarno SMS Classic or Alembic pre into either a JBL K-120 or an Acme B2. Don't get rid of this amp. Do get it checked over by a Mac specialist and get a better pair of power tubes. I have some old 7581s that sound fantastic. Both of mine are all original except for power and rectifier tubes and still sound wonderful. One of these days I'll recap them, but Mac built to a very high spec and these are built to last forever.
     
  19. CDweller

    CDweller Supporting Member

    Oct 24, 2009
    Clearwater, FL

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