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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey Team,


I have a unique situation.


I live in 1k square foot condo, and I am building a 2.1 system for TV/HT/music. I have a new pair of B&W 804d's, and I was all set on getting the Emotiva UMC-1 with the Emotiva XPA-2 when I found out that a friend of a friend is in a pinch, and has to sell his McIntosh MC402 that he bought a year ago. He told me for half of what he paid, ($3.5k), I can have it. It is in perfect condition.


Now, I haven't heard either amp, and I know I am going to get crucified for that, but if anyone has any thoughts on what they would do, I would appreciate it.


To give you further information, I have the cash to drop on the McIntosh, but obviously it is about value at this point. I feel if I spent the money on the MC402, I may not need to buy another amp for 20 years, if ever again.


Thanks for your help!


JP
 

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Well, McIntosh probably has good resale value. Does the warranty transfer?


It's a bit like art, IMO. You pay extra for the McIntosh name, but you get a nice looking well made amplifier. Some may say having those nice big glowing meters is worth the difference in price alone
 

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I think it is a hard question to answer. Amps probably make less difference than the Pre-Pro, but that is only my opinion. Let me tell you what I did and maybe it will help you. I had the Denon Flagship AVP Pre-pro and the POA amp. I sold them both. I replaced the amp with an XPA 3 and XPA 3 and frankly they sound better and run much cooler than the POA. Don't flame me here Denon fans, cause I loved the Denon, but sometimes lots of money and name are just that, lots of money and name.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JPPhillips /forum/post/19608298


Hey Team,


I have a unique situation.


I live in 1k square foot condo, and I am building a 2.1 system for TV/HT/music. I have a new pair of B&W 804d's, and I was all set on getting the UMC-1 with the XPA-2 when I found out that a friend of a friend is in a pinch, and has to sell his McIntosh MC402 that he bought a year ago. He told me for half of what he paid, ($3.5k), I can have it. It is in perfect condition.


Now, I haven't heard either amp, and I know I am going to get crucified for that, but if anyone has any thoughts on what they would do, I would appreciate it.


To give you further information, I have the cash to drop on the McIntosh, but obviously it is about value at this point. I feel if I spent the money on the MC402, I may not need to buy another amp for 20 years, if ever again.


Thanks for your help!


JP

I don't know anything about about the UMC-1. I own a MC 402. The $3500.00 price is excellent. Warranties are not transferable. If you ever have a problem with that amp, and he is a friend of yours, he can have it repaired under his name. These amps are bullet proof. Many people use the McIntosh with B&W speakers. My 402 is being used with Martin Logan CLX.

I check audiogon, and I have never seeing that amp priced that low.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

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Originally Posted by Turbo Ron /forum/post/19608590


I don't know anything about about the UMC-1. I own a MC 402. The $3500.00 price is excellent. Warranties are not transferable. If you ever have a problem with that amp, and he is a friend of yours, he can have it repaired under his name. These amps are bullet proof. Many people use the McIntosh with B&W speakers. My 402 is being used with Martin Logan CLX.

I check audiogon, and I have never seeing that amp priced that low.

I realize that is an incredible price for the MC402, and that amp is fantastic. However, it is still around 5x more expensive than the Emotiva XPA-2... Intuitively, I know the mac isn't 5x better, but if it actually retains is value, and it is as "bulletproof", then maybe it makes sense. I guess I am looking for an argument to be able to justify the price difference...
 

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You have very reveiling speakers in the b&w's, I would be very supprised if you did not hear a significant difference in amps. I am not saying the mc would be 5 times better than the umc1 but I would guess two to three times better. I would not pair a great pair of speakers such as yours with a lower end, low cost amp. Sorry, but you do get what you pay for. The price of the mc is very good and would be hard to pass up. Just my opinion though.
 

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If you can afford it, buy the MC402. You won't have to replace it for many many years (usually at least 20+) and it will always look awesome in your rack. Also, the whole no clipping thing is kinda nice if you are the type that likes to turn it up.


That is a fantastic deal on a MC402.
 

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My GUESS..


The McIntosh will look better and impress your friends. The Emotiva will sound indistinguishable from the McIntosh; will save you some money, and will probably also impress your friends (although, admittedly, not as much). I'd bet that you'd NEVER be able to hear the difference between the Mc and Emo; however, you may "think" the Mc sounds better if you pay more for it. Placebo is a powerful effect (and a real effect, if you have the money, and want to impress your friends; just buy the Mc, you'll be happy with it).


If money is at all an issue; buy the Emo, it will do exactly what the Mc does; I doubt there are 10 people on this forum (maybe on earth) that could reliably A/B test between those 2 amps. If the power specs are similar and neither amp is an utter POS, they are going to sound just about identical (this does NOT apply for tube amps, they are different, even I can usually "hear" tubes).
 

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As I said earlier in the thread, the emotiva sounds just as good as the Denon flagship POA. I challange anyone of the highbrows to tell the difference. Only difference I can tell is the emotiva runs much cooler and the POA would occasionally shut down on very loud passages. the Emotiva so far hasn't. AS for "revealing" speakers, I have Salk HT3s.
 

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I will admit that the Mc will look great in your cabinet with the blue lights. My POA looked very impressive with it's 3 meters all working together.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by diamonddelts /forum/post/19618568


$3500 for a two channel amp. Jesus. Brand recognition, marketing, implied durability, and myths of high end amps sounding "different" than low end amps of equal power are a hell of a drug.

I knew you were going to comment here.
 

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If possible pick up the emotiva and borrow the mc from your friend. See for yourself what sounds better. There are those that will tell you they are indistinguishable, I am betting you will hear a big difference. Is it going to be enough to justify the extra cash over the emotiva? That would be up to you. If your set up is mostly for home theater use, I agree you will likely here less of a difference. If you enjoy listening to music, cd, vinyl, sacd ect. I think you will be surprsed of how different they will sound. Don't listen to all of us telling you what to do, listen for yourself. This is so fun.
 

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imo, it's unlikely that run within specs that they could be reliably differentiated in a "good" test...


that being said, if it was me, and i was making the choice, i'd buy the mcintosh...
i've always wanted one...


assuming you aren't spending the rent money and starving the kids, that is...



i wouldn't care if anyone ever "noticed it"... i'd be buying it for my greedy selfish self, not them....
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mjfink /forum/post/19618782


My GUESS..


The McIntosh will look better and impress your friends. The Emotiva will sound indistinguishable from the McIntosh; will save you some money, and will probably also impress your friends (although, admittedly, not as much). I'd bet that you'd NEVER be able to hear the difference between the Mc and Emo; however, you may "think" the Mc sounds better if you pay more for it. Placebo is a powerful effect (and a real effect, if you have the money, and want to impress your friends; just buy the Mc, you'll be happy with it).


If money is at all an issue; buy the Emo, it will do exactly what the Mc does; I doubt there are 10 people on this forum (maybe on earth) that could reliably A/B test between those 2 amps. If the power specs are similar and neither amp is an utter POS, they are going to sound just about identical (this does NOT apply for tube amps, they are different, even I can usually "hear" tubes).

Wow. I couldn't have said it better myself.


How much is the Emo? Like a grand I'm guessing? Buy the Emo, take the extra $2500 and go to Vegas for a couple days.
 

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If you could arrange to compare the 2 amps in your room with your speakers that would be ideal. I own a 2 channel mac myself, the mc252. I was exposed to mcintosh 30+ years ago by a friends dad. I have wanted one for years and found a deal I could not pass up. Some people think it is insane to pay that kind of money for an amplifier, I get that. I will have that amp until I pass then will it to my son. I guess what I am saying is that 98% of the population would not consider laying out that kind of money for an amp. You should see if you are in that other 2% if your friend will allow.
 

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Mc is one of the few amps I think is worth the extra money, if I had it



It's popular. It's resellable. I like it's style. I love the big glowing meters.
 

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I'd pretty much always choose McIntosh .. have always loved the look and sound..just not the price. One day I will hopefully get a MC207 although I enjoy my Sunfire TGA-7400 very much. The MC402 is an outstanding amp.. heard it magnolia connected to B&W 800D's
 

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I must be the only one that thinks McIntosh equipment is ugly, and very 70's looking. The knobs remind me of old Soundesign equipment. Then again, the bright blue LED's would keep me from getting the Emotiva too.


I'd choose neither.
 
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