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  1. #1
    Forum Regular
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    Jul 2011
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    6

    mcintosh ma-6500 or combo (mc-162 amp with c-15 preamp)

    Hello

    I have a dilemma

    So the dilemma is that I can either get a Mcintosh MC-162 amp with C-15 Preamp for around 1700
    or I have the option of getting the MA-6500 integrated for 2200.

    They are both used so i guess condition wouldn't come in question. I haven't heard the pre/amp combo so quality wise I dont know how "better" or "worse" it is from the ma-6500. I heard the 6500 and was blown away from it.
    I know they say separates are better, but what do you suggest in my situation.

    I like the way 6500 looks compared to the combo. (But again the combo doesnt look too bad), Secondly, I hear that c15 was developed by mcintosh when clarion bought them over and clearion was on mcintosh's butt about making something really affordable (1500$ was the msrp on the premamp) and I hear that many people say it was not really a "mcintosh" product since all the parts used inside are very cheap parts. But again I also hear that 6500 is the exact same as mc-162 and c15?. So I am in a dilemma and not sure which to pick . If they were both the same price, I would probably go with the 6500 integrated, but the price difference is 500 . My speakers are 805S B&W.

    Please let me know what I should do,

    Looking forward for your reply.

    Thank you very much

  2. #2
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    London, Ontario
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    8,127
    Quote Originally Posted by mikeanderson10 View Post
    Hello

    I have a dilemma

    So the dilemma is that I can either get a Mcintosh MC-162 amp with C-15 Preamp for around 1700
    or I have the option of getting the MA-6500 integrated for 2200.

    They are both used so i guess condition wouldn't come in question. I haven't heard the pre/amp combo so quality wise I dont know how "better" or "worse" it is from the ma-6500. I heard the 6500 and was blown away from it.
    I know they say separates are better, but what do you suggest in my situation.

    I like the way 6500 looks compared to the combo. (But again the combo doesnt look too bad), Secondly, I hear that c15 was developed by mcintosh when clarion bought them over and clearion was on mcintosh's butt about making something really affordable (1500$ was the msrp on the premamp) and I hear that many people say it was not really a "mcintosh" product since all the parts used inside are very cheap parts. But again I also hear that 6500 is the exact same as mc-162 and c15?. So I am in a dilemma and not sure which to pick . If they were both the same price, I would probably go with the 6500 integrated, but the price difference is 500 . My speakers are 805S B&W.

    Please let me know what I should do,

    Looking forward for your reply.

    Thank you very much
    I can't find a reference for the MC162 at my usual Mac sites. The C15 was introduced in 1998; I think the MA6500 is a bit more recent but I can't find a date.

    Does the MC162 have autoformer coupled output? I see that the MA6500 isn't an autoformer model.

    While it is clear that the C15, MA6500, and likely the MC162 are at the low end of the McIntosh line but this is the first I've heard about "cheap parts" -- as far as I know Mac has never made junk products; (whether they are really worth their price is another matter).

    I doubt that separates are necessarily better than the integrated given similar specs. Depending how important $500 is to you, I might go with the units that appear in better condition, or if similar in that respect, the newer unit(s) which might be the MA6500.

  3. #3
    Charm Thai™
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    Cleveland, Ohio
    Posts
    865
    Nah neither has autoformers but I always thought the 162 was a good amp while at the same time I continuously overlooked the 6500 in favor of the 6900. I'd prefer the amp/preamp combo just for flexibility's sake but I agree with Feanor and would go for the item in better condition if there is a noticeable difference.

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