It was first released in 2017, but has been on backorder for months. I was finally able to get my hands on a brand-new unit. I thought I would do an in-depth unboxing with a couple of videos of the unit powering up and in action. Please enjoy.
In the usual McIntosh fashion, it is well boxed and protected. The unit is heavy but not has heavy as most McIntosh amps.
Cutting the factory seal and removing the unremarkable top piece of foam reveals the goodies inside.
The packaged remote and the unpackaged remote
Installed the battery in the remote
Power cable and speaker binding post tool
Removed the second piece of foam to reveal more of the MA252.
Taking the MA252 out of the box and setting it on the table
Removing the plastic
The protected tubes and tube cages. The small outer holes are the pre-installed tubes.
Exposed tubes without the cages. The MA252’s preamp section uses two 12AX7a tubes and two 12AT7 tubes.
The freshly unwrapped tube cage. Note the detail on the top of each cage, impressive! Make sure you take the time to install the cages so the “Mc” faces the front of the unit.
The standby light turns on for the first time since leaving the factory.
First tube warmup
Warming up the tubes. It takes them about six seconds to reach temperature and finally turn green. That means they’re ready to use.
Warmed up and ready to listen, I love the signature green glow.
First listen of the MA252 on the phono input.
The McIntosh MA252 is an amazing integrated amp that really performs at this price point. The impressive level of detail on the unit is a fantastic treat.
If you’re looking for a compact, warm-sounding setup this is the way to go. I had some time to listen to it using a Pro-Ject turntable with a pair of Bowers and Wilkins 805D speakers. Quality was incredible! The soundstage opened up before my ears with extreme clarity. I will also say the remote is simple and to the point; it just works and fits my hand very comfortably. I think I may have found my new favorite integrated amplifier.
Hybrid integrated (tube preamp stage, solid-state amp stage)
Power output per channel:
100 watts into 8 ohms or 160 watts into 4 ohms
4 or 8 ohms
Total harmonic distortion:
0 to -0.5dB – 20Hz to 20kHz
Phono stage sensitivity (moving magnet):
12″ (30.5cm) x 7-5/8″ (19.4cm) x 18″ (45.7cm)
mcintosh, integrated amplifier, tube amp, two channel amplifier, hybrid, Blog 2018