McIntosh to launch more affordable MPC500 Power Controller

In my experience clean, protected power is a key element to help in getting the best performance from delicate digital-centric source components like DACs, media servers, streamers or combos thereof.

With the announcement from McIntosh that they are releasing a more affordable power-protection and filtering component to ride shotgun with their flagship $4,999 USD toroidal-isolation transformer-based MPC1500, it seems they are looking to take back a market segment from third-party manufacturers (Toroidal cores use different types of insulation between primary and secondary windings. This serves to isolate the transfer of AC to DC power for component use, effectively blocking electrical interference and noise from polluted incoming AC).

The $2,500 USD MPC500 features six switched power receptacles and two unswitched, compared to the 1500’s eight and four, achieves AC line-surge/spike protection, cascaded-surge/spike protection, over/under voltage protection and EMI filtering. It does not feature a toroidal transformer for its electric isolation capabilities, rather it relies on passive means via varistors, gas discharge tubes, thermistors and voltage suppression components.

Press release highlights

Inconsistency in power quality can cause costly damage to electronic devices. Protect that home audio investment with the MPC500 Power Controller. Featuring cascaded surge protection, the MPC500 delivers full mode AC power line surge protection, such as from a lightning strike, as well as protecting low voltage devices against secondary surges and spikes that can occur after the initial event

AC power line protection is accomplished with the use of three thermally protected metal-oxide varistors (TPMOVs) – which are far safer than traditional MOVs – that provide Line to Neutral, Line to Ground and Neutral to Ground protection. For secondary surge events, the MPC500 provides protection for ethernet, coaxial, and other low voltage devices via Gas Discharge Tubes (GDT), Positive Temperature Coefficient (PTC) thermistors and Transient Voltage Suppression (TVS) components. Also included in the MPC500 is electromagnetic interference (EMI) filtering of the AC line and over/under voltage protection, which will switch off the rear receptacles to keep connected devices safe from trying to operate at undesired voltage levels

The MPC500 includes either 8 Type B1 (a.k.a. NEMA 5-15R) or 4 Type F1 (a.k.a. CEE 7/3 or “Schuko”) receptacles; only the appropriate version is available in each individual country to ensure compatibility with local power systems. Control of each receptacle can be configured via the rear panel Power Control ports or through the setup menus on the front panel

The front panel display can list input voltage, the amount of current being drawn through the receptacles, or total (apparent) power. Regardless of receptacle type, all versions of the MPC500 feature the timeless McIntosh black glass front panel, illuminated logo, control knobs, and aluminum end caps. 1) As defined by the International Electrotechnical Commission

Pricing and Availability: Orders for the MPC500 can now be placed with Authorized McIntosh dealers with shipping expected to begin in April 2019. Suggested retail price (VAT, shipping and any customs duties related to current standards of individual countries are excluded): $2,500 USD.

McIntosh Laboratory Inc.
2 Chambers Street - Binghamton, NY 13903-2699