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Accuphase E-550 versus McIntosh MA2275

Just a short note that in my still continuing search I auditioned the above two amps today.

Equipments were: Esoteric P03 transport/D03 DAC (very expensive but they had it already hooked up so we stayed with it); Focal Lab (Micro Utopia Be) top bookshelfs. Both Mc and Accuphase were burned-in and warmed for 20-30min. Then listened to E550 45min followed by Mc about 30min.

Don Mclean/Another audiophile vocal: On these discs, both amps were enjoyable even though this type of music is probably more Mc's forte than E550. However E550 in comparison sounded more powerful, but did not lose finese in managing soft music. There was certainly an element of magic esepcailly from E550. Vocal was very clean/clear. Great instrument separation from both, but Mc was really slow and it was more difficult to stay tuned after a while.

Queen/DSOTM: Here there was little comparison. E550 was hard, fast, punchy, powerful. The "time" track on DSOTM was amazing in the 30 seconds at the beg of the track with the cascade of clocks/bells/alarms ringing at once. On the other hand, Mc in comparison was REALLY slow... I probably had time to take a leak and come back and the bells would still be ringing. I don't know what it is about amp that makes sound seem so slow, even though signal is being sent at the same pace from the same cdp. I suspect this type of sound would suit people with more patience and live life at a more gentle pace. Queen Flash track again showed similar differences. While E550 was staging a galatic war on this track, Mc was like lighting up a cigar (sorry for being lazy in my description). The sound, in comparison from Mc, was lazy, sloppy, slowwww... Maybe if I had not listened to E550 I would have enjoyed Mc much more.

Summary:

Preferred E550 much more for my taste

E550 more pacey, dynamic, powerful, alive on all music, and I was particularly impressed (surprised) it did not give ground on slow music where Mc is known to be strong

Next steps:

Compare E550 with Moon i-7
Comapre BAT V300 with Supernait and NAC282/NAP250


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  • Accuphase E-550 versus McIntosh MA2275 - KW13 07:22:38 07/26/08 (0)

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