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Old 11-07-2019, 05:40 PM
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Default McIntosh C22 III Tubes

I have a question about the C22 III tube layout. Say I wanted to swap out the stock tubes in the line stage only and not the MM and MC phono stages, which of the six tubes would those be that I would replace? I'm assuming that four of the six tubes are for the phono stages while the remaining two are for the line stage? Am I correct?
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:42 PM
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Stahle.......Here is the current reissued McIntosh C22 preamplifier tube arrangement. It is identical to the McIntosh C2300 tube preamp.


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Old 11-07-2019, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdandy View Post
Stahle.......Here is the current reissued McIntosh C22 preamplifier tube arrangement. It is identical to the McIntosh C2300 tube preamp.
Perfect, that is exactly what I was looking for. Thank you!
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Old 11-07-2019, 07:25 PM
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I asked the question about the tube location because I'm thinking about replacing the two in the line stage. I'm finding that the bass output when using the C22 III isn't as punchy as that which I was getting out of the C15 preamp I was previously using. Anyone else have a similar issue with a McIntosh tube preamp?
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Last edited by Stahle; 11-07-2019 at 09:48 PM.
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Old 11-08-2019, 01:01 AM
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Stahle.......As I understand it, the McIntosh branded tubes being used in their current tube preamps and amps are manufactured by JJ Tubes in their Russian plant. My suggestion is buy two Gold Lion ECC83/B759 (12AX7) gold pin tubes, and perhaps another pair of Tung-Sol Gold 12AX7 / ECC803S tubes. This will allow you to swap the different tubes and make direct comparisons, plus give you spares. Remember, all vacuum tubes have a break-in period that can exceed 60 hours or more, so don't make snap decisions on their sound until you have sufficient hours on each pair.
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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
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Old 11-08-2019, 09:53 AM
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Default McIntosh C22 III Tubes

Itís a used but mint C22 III which may or may not have a lot of hours on the stock tubes. I donít know because I had to buy it used from a well known reseller since all of the C22ís were sold out. For all I know, it could have a ton of hours on it and the tubes might just be at the end of their life. Iíll try what you suggest and see how that works. With all the rave reviews of this preamp, itís got to be something easy to fix. After all, I borrowed a C2300 one time and dropped it into my system and it sounded great.
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Last edited by Stahle; 11-08-2019 at 10:02 AM.
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Old 11-08-2019, 08:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdandy View Post
Stahle.......As I understand it, the McIntosh branded tubes being used in their current tube preamps and amps are manufactured by JJ Tubes in their Russian plant. My suggestion is buy two Gold Lion ECC83/B759 (12AX7) gold pin tubes, and perhaps another pair of Tung-Sol Gold 12AX7 / ECC803S tubes. This will allow you to swap the different tubes and make direct comparisons, plus give you spares. Remember, all vacuum tubes have a break-in period that can exceed 60 hours or more, so don't make snap decisions on their sound until you have sufficient hours on each pair.


I think Danís plan is a good one. Experiment with some new tubes from a couple of different manufacturers to see how they change the sound.
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Old 11-08-2019, 10:52 PM
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I was reading about damping factor and tube amplifiers vs solid state amplifiers and the affect it has on speaker cables. Might the same affect be true with tube preamplifiers vs solid state preamplifiers. Say you're only using unbalanced RCA connectors between the preamplifier and the amplifier but the distance between the two is far, say 25'. Would there be less of an impact with the solid state preamplifier vs the tube preamplifier?
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Old 11-09-2019, 12:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stahle View Post
I was reading about damping factor and tube amplifiers vs solid state amplifiers and the affect it has on speaker cables. Might the same affect be true with tube preamplifiers vs solid state preamplifiers. Say you're only using unbalanced RCA connectors between the preamplifier and the amplifier but the distance between the two is far, say 25'. Would there be less of an impact with the solid state preamplifier vs the tube preamplifier?
Stahle.......No, not with current McIntosh preamplifiers. Your C22 has a maximum output of 2.5 volts unbalanced, and 5 volts balanced. My C2300, which is also a tube preamplifier has the same specifications, as does the new solid state C1100 preamplifier which also has a maximum output of 2.5 volts unbalanced, and 5 volts balanced. If you are using 25' runs of unbalanced interconnects between your C22 and your power amplifier I would suggest you switch to balanced interconnects. Balanced interconnects will provide two distinct advantages, one being its ability to null out noise, and the other is it's higher voltage across that distance.
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STUDIO - McIntosh C1000C/P, MC2301 (2), MR88, Aurender N10, Esoteric K-01X, Shunyata Sigma spdif digital cable, Sonos Connect, PurePower 2000, Stillpoints, Furutech Flux 50, Michell Gyro SE, Michell HR Power Supply, SME 309, Ortofon Cadenza Black, Wireworld, Sonus faber Amati Anniversario
LIVING ROOM - McIntosh C2300, MC75 (2), MR85, Magnum Dynalab 205, Simaudio MOON Neo 260D-T, Schiit Audio Yggdrasil, Aurender N100H, Shunyata Sigma USB cable, Micro Seiki DD40, Ortofon Cadenza Blue, Nakamichi BX-300, Sony 60ES DAT, PS Audio P10, Furutech Flux 50, Sonos Connect, Stillpoints, Wireworld, Kimber, PMC EB1i, JL Audio f113
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:03 PM
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So I discovered the issue with my C22 III and the bass output, basically the tubes it came with were worn out. I swapped the line stage tubes with the MM phono stage tubes just to see if it would make a difference and it did. Everything now sounds as it should, in fact, everything improved and am now loving the C22 III.

Because of this I have a different question which relates to buying tubes. I would like to replace all of the tubes with a new set of Gold Lions as everyone on this site seems to rave about them. The seller will match the tubes but they are matched in pairs only, is this normal? I've never purchase tubes before so I just want to make sure that I'm not settling for something.
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