McIntosh MC462 stereo power amplifier review
In our latest article, we write about the testing of the McIntosh MC462 power amplifier. McIntosh did not start designing and manufacturing audio devices today, they have been working since 1949 to make their products appeal to all hi-fi enthusiasts.
Let’s take a closer look at the McIntosh power amplifier
The MC462 power amplifier has 2 channels and the output power is 450 Watt at 2,4 or 8 Ohm. Autoformer technology ensures stable operation and 450 watts of power per channel. Compared to its predecessor, the performance has not changed, but the filter capacity has been increased by 50%, resulting in a more precise and clear bass range. Red LED lights indicate automatic standby. If the amplifier does not detect a signal for 30 minutes, it switches to auto standby mode, which is an energy-saving and environmentally friendly function. The amplifier can handle even the most complex speakers.
Versatile protection and many features
As a bodyguard, the Power Guard function protects the speakers from distortion. Sentry Monitor protects the power amplifier from overload and short circuit. Quad Balanced extinguishes noise. Power Control inputs and outputs allow you to control multiple McIntosh devices at the same time. Solid Chinch gold-plated speaker connections can also accommodate a banana plug, fork, and direct cable.
Attractive, clean design
The device is characterized by a modern, minimalist design. The housing is made of stainless steel, the stained glass front panel is equipped with LED backlighting, a green illuminated logo, aluminum handles, 2 control buttons and power meters with blue backlighting. Behind the front panel are the 2 Autoformer and the mains transformer. The semiconductors are connected directly to the heavily sized heat sink, so heat conduction is very efficient. The power amplifier is equipped with symmetrical and asymmetrical inputs and outputs. The device stands on 4 rubber feet. The weight of the power stage is quite heavy, 52.3 kg. It’s worth strengthening a bit in the gym to withstand this heavyweight device.
“AB” class amplifier
It combines the advantages of the “A” and “B” classes, i.e. the level of distortion remains low with good efficiency.
Let’s start the party!
Followed by the decisive listening test, which took place in an old, brick-built condominium. The owner wanted to test his latest member, the McIntosh MC462 power amplifier, to expand his home theater system, so he invited us to his home. B&W Diamond 802 is associated with the amplifier. The room acoustically is almost completely ideal, we had so many observations after the acoustic measurement that a little more diffusers could have been placed on the walls.
At the request of our customer, we started the testing with the performance of 3 tenors. The names of Luciano Pavarotti, Jose Carreras and Placido Domingo are a guarantee of wonderful arias. The O Sole Mio came up and we were already thinking about the sunny landscapes of Italy. Each of the songs performed by the 3 amazing singers sounded perfect, clear, dynamic. We did not hear any noise or distortion even when we adjusted the volume.
We listened to one of the most beautiful arias in Puccini’s opera The Madame Butterfly afterwards. The Grand Aria was sung by Maria Callas, of course fantastically and unsurpassed. The amplifier was not ashamed, every range sounded beautiful, definite, we got a vivid, definite sound image. The unlimited dynamics were still astonishing.
In 2018, the musical, Mamma Mia-Here we go again, written for the hits of the band ABBA, went to the cinemas. The MC462 was great and we could enjoy extremely detailed, spacious, full and realistic sounds. The bass was intense, the sound was found to be contrasting, authentic. The device provided accurate and distortion-free performance.
Learning about the McIntosh MC462 power amplifier, we were not disappointed with the capabilities of the audio device. Honestly, we weren’t very surprised as we had previously tested the manufacturer’s other product, so we already had some idea of the expected quality. The unlimited dynamics are simply astounding and stunning. No error was found in the sound. The sound image was clear, detailed and spatial. This type is the most muscular amp from McIntosh. As a negative, we would mention its rather bulky size and high price. Due to its respectable weight and size, it should preferably not be placed on a light, Scandinavian shelf.