McIntosh MTI100 Integrated Turntable Launched – Real World Bluetooth Hi-fi

It’s a sign of the times that everything old is new again. The vinyl resurgence of the last several years, for example, confounded some manufacturers and was simpatico for others. Those who saw it as a fad seemed to be misinformed and those who saw it as a resurgence for a format that is just as viable today as it was 50 years ago now seem prescient.

McIntosh it seems is in the latter camp. Not only do they embrace the LP, they embrace the modern LP collector and music lover who not only wants vinyl playback ability in a sound system, but digital and streaming options too.

After all, most of the record junkies I see at shops are using a smartphone to reference albums on Discogs or listening to it off Apple Music, Spotify or Tidal through their headphones before pulling the trigger on the physical copy. It’s no different in their apartments I imagine as again, many modern vinyl consumers will play digital copies via Bluetooth but then seek out a physical copy as their “premier” version for playback on their vinyl altar. And in almost every case, their digital and analog playback setups at home are separate entities: the vinyl rig has a turntable, an integrated amplifier (usually) and speakers, while their digital rig is usually comprised of some small, wireless-capable speaker or speakers that they stream to from their phones.

And to me, this is where McIntosh’s new $6,500 USD MTI100 Integrated Turntable rather smartly slides into a well-padded niche. Not only does it spin the big black discs, it brings their delicate electro-acoustic signal up to line-level via its built-in phono stage, it is a 12AX7 vacuum-tube preamplifier, it is a 50-Watt/8 Ohms Class-D power amplifier, A 24-bit/192kHz capable DAC (no DSD), along with both digital (coaxial, optical, Bluetooth 4.2) and RCA analog inputs as well as a headphone amplifier that is “optimized for virtually all headphone types.” It’s a classic all-in-one but in a svelte, futuristic and stylish seven-pound turntable package – designed for modern urban dwellings that need to take space into consideration –not a giant 300-pound cabinet for the rec-room – and it bridges that digital/analog divide I mentioned that seems to permeate most urban dwellings. All you need to do to complete the scene is a pair of loudspeakers and for not much more real estate than a cutting board you’ve got an entire analog and digital solution to get your party started.

Press release highlights below

Turntable? Amplifier? Vacuum tube preamplifier? Phono preamplifier? Analog & Digital inputs? Bluetooth? Speaker outputs? Subwoofer output? Headphone jack? McIntosh engineering?

What else is needed? Just add music and speakers.

At first glance, the new McIntosh MTI100 Integrated Turntable may look like it’s just a turntable, but a closer look will reveal that it is in fact so much more. Truly a one-of-a-kind product, it is designed for those who want maximum flexibility in their home audio system but don’t want – or don’t have the space for – a large audio system. With all the built-in connectivity the MTI100 offers, it can become the center piece of a modern home audio system for modern lifestyles. Simply add a pair of speakers to create a complete and comprehensive audio system. Besides the turntable that plays both 33-1/3 and 45 rpm vinyl records, the MTI100 also includes a power amplifier, a vacuum tube preamplifier section, a shielded phono preamplifier, an unbalanced auxiliary input, digital audio coaxial and optical inputs, a Bluetooth receiver, a subwoofer output, stereo speaker outputs, and a headphone jack for personal listening.

The seven-pound (3.18 kg) machined aluminum platter and the matching machined aluminum tonearm with anti-skate sit atop a 3/8” (9.5mm) thick piece of glass – the same glass found in the front panels of our larger amplifiers; this in turn sits atop a custom 1/4” (6.35mm) thick metal plate that adds stability. The combined heftiness of both the platter and metal plate helps resist and absorb noise that could be caused by external vibrations. The belt drive platter with manual speed change is driven by an industrial grade permanent magnet AC synchronous motor with a 2-speed pulley. With this motor, the platter speed is precisely synced to the AC power line’s frequency to deliver precise rotational speeds for playback accuracy. The MTI100 comes with a Sumiko Olympia Moving Magnet cartridge, whose upgraded stylus and cantilever assembly allow for more dynamic punch and improved frequency response.

A Class D amplifier that’s rated for 80 Watts per channel into 4 Ohms or 50 Watts per channel into 8 Ohms is used to drive a pair of speakers. Two 12AX7 vacuum tubes power the main preamplifier section, while a separate dedicated phono preamplifier is housed in a custom shielding box that prevents interference or noise from seeping into the vinyl signal. Together, the vacuum tube preamplifier and shielded phono preamplifier help make vinyl albums sound their best.

To combine playing vintage vinyl records with modern playback methods, music can also be streamed to the MTI100 via its High Definition Bluetooth 4.2 input that ensures the MTI100 receives the best sound quality possible from the Bluetooth device. An external Bluetooth antenna helps achieve optimal reception and signal quality. The analog and digital audio inputs allow external sources, such as a TV, tuner or CD Player, to be connected. Not to overlook the impact that low sound frequencies can add, a subwoofer output is also included. Finally, for personal listening, the front panel includes a headphone jack that is powered by our High Drive headphone amplifier, which features increased gain and output power and is optimized for virtually all headphone types.

Power, volume and input selection can be controlled by either the included remote or via two knobs on the unit. An illuminated McIntosh logo is located in the top glass panel, while a classic McIntosh-styled die cast aluminum name badge adorns the front of the chassis.

Orders for the MTI100 can now be placed with Authorized McIntosh dealers with shipping expected to begin in January 2019. Suggested retail price (VAT, shipping and any customs duties related to current standards of individual countries are excluded): $6,500 USD.

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

volvic's picture

I am glad that vinyl players are being made in all shapes and sizes, it means the market is healthy and that there is demand for vinyl. That said, this is not for me nor I would imagine a lot of readers of Stereophile or audiostream. I suspect it is for those who live in that slick glass condo in Manhattan overlooking Central Park where dinner guests will fawn over it as they sip their Pomerol, just before dinner is announced. I think it looks garish and obscene and why would the tubes (if they are indeed functional), be placed next to the tonearm. My SME 10 has a stylus guard to protect klutzes like myself from bashing into it and they decide to put the tubes next to the tonearm? I hope they find a home for each one they make and wish them loads of success, as there are loads of condos here in NYC with $5,000 maintenance fees that can easily afford this.