Preamp For McIntosh MC352


I just bought a McIntosh MC352 a few days ago and absolutely love it. I am going to be upgrading my preamp soon and would like some feedback from the knowledgeable people here on this site. Thinking of a c42, c15, or c2200. I am also considering Bat and Audio Research.

I own and love my MC352 also.I use a C42 pre with great results.The EQ feature is a big plus.Mac pre/pwr combos offer superb system synergy.The ones that imho best my C42 are the C100 and the C200.They take things to a whole higher level minus the EQ feature.If I had the coins,I'd buy the C100 in a heartbeat.One of the best SS preamps period.Only piece I've heard and owned that I thought was better was a Rowland Synergy.But it didn't complement the Mac power amp as well as the C42.It's that system synergy raising it's ugly head again.All Mac system has it in spades.Can't address the C2200 as I'm not a tuber.
Of the ones you mentioned, the 42 or 2200 would be nice with the 352. If you can swing it, the C100 Dennis mentioned would be special. It's fully balanced in to out like the 352. I own one and can vouch for it. Good luck.
I would stick with a Mc preamp - synergy is key!!! I have never been able to get better results with my McIntoshes than when pairing a Mc amp with a Mc preamp. I would go with the C2200 over the C42 if your room acoustics are decent (i.e., no need for EQ). The MC352 will be my next amp. Enjoy! Arthur
I use the mc352 with a c200 and am very happy with the
results. I would stick with a mac preamp for the synergy.
The c42, C46, C2200, c100 or c200 are all excellent with your amp. Listen to them for yourself and trust your ears.
I own a MA6900 which has the C42 as the built in pre. Tried the C2200 on the same amp through the 'amp-in', What an improvement! Listen to both if you can & see which you prefer.
Alternatively you might like to read the thread on SUPRATEK pre amps titled " Pre-amp deal of the century". You never know what you might discover !! Good luck.
I have the MC352 and use it with a MX134 as well as a MC7205. I just read the reveiw in Home Theater on the C42 and it sounds like a great piece. I recommend the C42 so that in the future you can add theater sound if you desire.
I have a mc352/c42 it`s a good combination it`s bettered by a c2200 as a pre. I am going to replace the c42 with a Bat vk31se or a lamm ll2. I have a Bat vkp-5 phono stage with a six pack upgrade. I can`t explain how the Bat opened up the detail and gave it airyness in the depth of the soundstage, it just did. So if it did that in the phono stage it should do more wonders by replaceing the SS c42 with a tubed line stage. Keep in mind the c2200 is no slouch either. Im going with either a Bat vk-31se, Lamm ll2, Aesthetix calypso, CAT sl1 MKIII. Just some food for thought. David
Thanks for the advice. I never even thought of the C100 or C200 before this to be honest with you. I will definately be getting a Mac Preamp now to go along with the amp. Does anyone know what the differences are between the C100 and C200?

CK_1: Have You had a chance to listen to the Bat31se VS. The MC2200. Both are in the $3000. + Range on the used markets. Just wondering your take on the issue.

Many of you know that I've been considering a new/used pre for a while (Budget Not There Yet) to mate with my Mc7100. With All this time on my hands I've researched every Big Named Model there is from AES to Bats to Joule, and have now come full circle back to Mcintosh. Which I think will be best for my needs.

You guys read the latest Sound & Vision Magazine? They Have A Outstanding Review of the new MC46 ($3500.). Say's it's basically all the pre one may ever need for their 2ch, multi- ch audio & HT needs...Major thumbs up there.

Just curious has anyone compared the MC40 To any of the Pre's mentioned in this thread? Just wonder how it would stack up against the the likes of MC42, MC46 & MC2200?

Oops, Totally messed that one up (MC46 Review) is actually review of MC45 and is in the April 04' issue of Home Theater Mag.
Jalen- I had a C38 (among others) for a while which is basically a simplified C40 and found it to be very good but not quite as transparent as my C712. The C712 mates super well with my MC7100, not to mention they are in the same chassis which looks great as a stack. The C712 is the next generation after C38/40 and so perhaps the C45/46 are better than the C712. I have yet to hear these new ones. By the way, I love my Mc7100.

Thanks for the input Aball. I Thought you were set for an upgrade Yourself (MC2200???) I'm Guessing the 712 is either that good or your budget is funny as well.....Heck, maybe by the time your ready for an upgrade I could buy your 712. :P

Does the 712 have balanced outputs???

Yes, the 712 has balanced outputs. The C15 that replaced it does not however. I want to upgrade but I have been spending money on other toys lately. I am pretty satisfied with my little setup for the time being.
Auditioning is the best way but please remember the C100/C200 are ready to go out of the box while the C2200 will need an immediate replacement of stock tubes before its potential can be realized. I doubt any dealer will allow a demo with vintage/NOS tubes so a comparison is rather difficult. While the C100 is fantastic and fully balanced the C2200/tube has its merits also and only personal taste can lead. I regretably sold my C100 for financial reasons but now wouldn't ever go back after obtaining the C2200/NOS'd. This is not a tube/SS debate just pointing out one's personal choice.