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  1. #1
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Feb 2003

    Question A few questions.

    Do isolation blocks/platforms actualy do anything for the sound quality of SS amps or cd players?

    Do tubes really sound any different than solid state?

    Is McIntosh equipment worth the price or just a status simble?

  2. #2
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    The only way isolation blocks might make a difference in the sound of a CD player is if your CD player is skipping due to the shaking caused by loud music or airplane turbulence or something. They will never make a difference in the sound of a solid state amp.

    I can't remember your other questions...

    Oh yeah, tube amps definitely sound different from solid state amps. Mostly due to distortion that some people find pleasurable. I find that the higher power capabilities of solid state amps outweigh any benefits that might be gained from that "tube sound." I like loud music and I don't like limiting myself to ultra-efficient speakers.

    Only you can decide if McIntosh amps are worth the extra investment for you. Some people would pay big bucks just for the gorgeous looks of those big vu meters. In terms of sound quality, in my opinion, no $5,000 amp is 10x better than a good $500 amp. Likewise, no $500 amp is 10x better than a good $50 amp. A $1000 sound system might be 80% of the way toward perfect fidelity, where a $5000 sounds system might be 90% and a $20,000 sound system might be 95% and a $100,000 system might be 96%. There are always diminishing returns in audio as you spend more and more. Where those diminishing returns meet rising prices to designate the perfect purchases for your own system is something only you can decide.

    Hope that helps a little,

  3. #3
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    I use brass cones underneath my CD Player, which sit on 1 inch thick Corian, which sits on Isolation blocks. The brass cones and isoblocks are fom Maple Shade. Audible the diffence were minor. Bass seemed to tighten up, also voices seemed to be more focused and pronounced in most recordings. The two products set me back @ $60, so no big deal there. Was it worth it? Sure.

    Yes tubes sound different then solid state amps. I think they have a smoother midrange; thats were their magic lies. The best way to go, I belive, is to use a tube linestage, amd a solid state amp. I belive tubes are best for amplifying voltage, and solid state devices are better for amplifing current. This way I think you get the best of both worlds!

    Most Mac owners are usually lifers! They just love those big blue meters. I too like Mac; If you have the means and like their sound, sure there worth it. If your funds are limited, and you think that all solid state amp sound prety much the same, well then, I guess you would say they aren't worth the money.

    Their tube amps I really like, but they don't produce very much tube gear any more. A few years back the came out with a limited edition tube amp, the MC2000. This amp marked the 50th Anniversary! As of today, I'm only aware of one tube amp that they produce, the MC2102. They might make more, but I'm not sure. The MC2102 retails for @ $6100, not that costly for a high - end great sounding 100 wpc tube amp. Especially if you love Mac, and their BIG blue meters!

    Go out and give Mac equipment a listen. What's the worst thing that can happen?

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