McIntosh has announced two new products that I didn’t have time to see in person at this year’s CEDIA EXPO, unfortunately. The company’s new MCD550 SACD/CD Player and the MA8000 Integrated Amplifier deliver new features and functionality, while maintaining that inimitable McIntosh style.
The tenth-generation MCD550 borrows a couple of technologies from its bigger brother, the MCD1100, including a 192/24 USB DAC input and a quad-balanced output design, which relies on an eight-channel 192/24 PCM/DSD DAC — four DACs per channel — for enhanced dynamic range and low-distortion output. The MCD550’s auto-correcting loading tray also reads data from CDs and SACDs at twice the average speed, allowing it to buffer your tunes for better error correction and tracking. It also boasts a new Head Drive headphone amp with increased gain and output, along with coaxial and optical digital outputs, if you’d rather let your pre-amp or integrated amp handle the D-to-A conversion.
The MA8000 Integrated Amplifier, meanwhile, is reportedly McIntosh’s most powerful ever at 300 watts per channel. It too features McIntosh’s new Head Drive headphone amp, along with 192/32 DAC capabilities (although it can only accept files up to 192/24 resolution), and a total of 15 inputs in all, including six unbalanced, two balanced, two phono (perfect, the company suggests, for its new MT5 Precision Turntable), and five digital inputs, one of which is USB.
No word on pricing, but given that, as with all McIntosh gear, both the MCD550 and MA8000 are handcrafted in Binghamton, NY, you can bet they don’t come cheap.