McIntosh as guitar amp?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs' started by soli528, Sep 22, 2006.

  1. soli528

    soli528 Silver Supporting Member

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    Anyone out there ever use any vintage hi-fi amps with a guitar as a poweramp? I've got a '62 McIntosh MC240 with all the original telefunken tubes and original smoothplate 6L6's... It's good for 80W bridged mono... I'm tempted to run a guitar pre into it... Somebody stop me. Tinkering and drinkering after work on Friday can be dangerous...:messedup
     
  2. Blue Strat

    Blue Strat Member

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    There's no reason for it not to work. It's probably going to be VERY clean, but give it a go.
     
  3. mlongano

    mlongano Supporting Member

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    I thought that hi-fi amps were looking for a line out signal, and that a 1/4" guitar jack signal could cause damage to the amp or speakers?
     
  4. soli528

    soli528 Silver Supporting Member

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    Hey Mike. I figured the pre would boost the signal up to the level the power amp wants to see. Not bringing the Mac to Charlotte, BTW.;)
     
  5. JamonGrande

    JamonGrande Supporting Member

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    I believe Jerry Garcia used Macs as power amps for his later rigs.

    not sure though
    joe
     
  6. soli528

    soli528 Silver Supporting Member

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    Yeah, it doesn't leave the living room. Something like 60 lbs. :jo
    I read somewhere about a guy that built enclosures for old Mac amps to be used in sound reinforcement. Sucks for the crew!
     
  7. fullerplast

    fullerplast Senior Member

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    Back in the early days of the Grateful Dead, when Owsley was supporting the band, he had four MC240's set up for band power amps-one for each instrument. I have one of those four that I use for my stereo system. The only mod Owsley made was to put 1/4 jacks in for the inputs instead of the stock phono plugs. Garcia later used a twin reverb preamp out into a different model McIntosh power amp for a few years.

    It works fine as a guitar power amp, but is more clean than most guitarists would probably want. Also, it weighs about as much as a twin reverb by itself! The trannies are enormous. McIntosh built some outstanding quality gear back in those days. Every piece of that amp is top quality, but I wouldn't want to lug it around to gigs.
     
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  8. HCStraub

    HCStraub Member

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    I think Garcia played through McIntosh amps back in the day....correct me if I am wrong, but I think he used a modified Fender Twin for the preamp into the McIntosh amps, then into a cabinet with JBL's.
     
  9. soli528

    soli528 Silver Supporting Member

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    That's good enough for me. No wonder "The Music Never Stopped"
     
  10. Wallace

    Wallace Silver Supporting Member

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    I havent but I do remember reading on a early Chicago LP that guitarist
    Terry Kath (sp) {25 or 6 to four} did on a number of tracks. Give it try? Could be good....
    W
     
  11. mlongano

    mlongano Supporting Member

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    LOL...now i see it mentioned a preamp...I didn't see that on the first read.
     
  12. soli528

    soli528 Silver Supporting Member

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    Holy smokes!:crazy

    What are you using for a pre? I'm running an MX110 (Z series from about '63). Sounds as good as I can imagine.
     
  13. fullerplast

    fullerplast Senior Member

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    I don't currently have a vintage tube pre, but I use a Mackie 1402VLZ mixer to run all my audio (CD, DVD, DAT, XM, etc.) into the 240. A better pre would be nice, but this makes having many different sources very easy and the VLZ pre's are actually pretty decent.
     
  14. rob2001

    rob2001 Member

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    Hey guys, while i'm not an expert on mac's, I do know for a fact that they are incredible with a preamp. One of my favorite tones are from a guy named Vitto Bratta of the 80's hair band White lion. ( I know, laugh if you must), But this guy is a monster player and I've researched his recording setups. An ADA MP-1 pre and a Mac amp of some sort. Some of the smoothest, fattest lead tones i've heard. Well I have the ADA but just running in the loop of a tube head. (Not my main rig). But my point is that I believe the setup your talking about is a very cool thing! Here's some pre's to look at, although I have no idea what kinds of tones you like, i'll name a few, ADA MP-1, Marshall JMP-1, Mesa Studio preamp, Mesa Triaxis, and rocktron makes some units with a ton of FX if thats your taste. I think in general rack rigs have a rep for more heavy stuff but my experience has been that they'll do just about anything played accordingly. I'd love to hear my ADA thru that thing!! I'd have no idea how to rout that though. Standard 1/4" input I guess??
     
  15. slipbeer

    slipbeer Supporting Member

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    For some reason I thought Toy Caldwell used a Mac back in the early days of Marshall Tucker.

    However, there are huge chunks of my brain that seem to call up pretty insane memories of those times so don't quote me.

    I did use an SM58 through a JTM45 with 2 Greenbacks to mike my old RCA phonograph though.
     
  16. RKHIII

    RKHIII Member

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    McIntosh...great amp! I say use it for it's original intended use and go buy a Goodsell Super 17 if you're looking for a hi-fi guitar amp.
     
  17. soli528

    soli528 Silver Supporting Member

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    Thanks for the tips Rob. It's just got RCA inputs, but I figure a cable can be built. The other cool thing is that it's stereo (40Wpc) and it could be run into separate cabs...:rolleyes: The mono input is single RCA as well. I'll post a clip once I can get it sounding right.

    Thanks for the input everyone.
     
  18. sysexguy

    sysexguy Member

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    go over and search gearslutz Michael Wagener used them for all his 80's production, not only White Lion ie Skid Row, Ozzy and Extreme:RoCkIn

    Andy
     
  19. Trout

    Trout Member

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    IMHO
    For what An MC240 brings these days in good condition, Using it for a guitar amp would be a waste, The guys in Japan pay up to $3500.00 on ebay for those things. You could buy a really nice guitar amp for that much and not have to waste your time getting it to sound right.

    I just aquired an MC240 and a Marantz Series 7 Pre-Amp along with a bunch of other high end audiophile stuff this past thursday.

    The Series 7 is worth up to $6,000 overseas. Nabbed the whole lot for $150.00 and the people even helped me load it in the car. Got them at an Estate sale. Heres a picture of how I found it.
    http://www.keyestatesales.com/pictures/1.jpg

    I'll sell it all and buy a New Geetar LOL
    Trout
     
  20. Serious Poo

    Serious Poo Armchair Rocket Scientist Graffiti Existentialist Gold Supporting Member

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    Other than the fact that you've got a VERY expensive & rare audio amp that could be damaged, I can't think of any reason why not. :jo
     

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