AED 63,585.00 (Inc. Tax)
2 in stock
MC3500 1-Channel Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II
- 350 Watt Monoblock
- Inspired by the original 1968-71 MC3500 – the Amplifier that Inspired a Generation
- Powered by eight EL509S high-power output vacuum tubes
- Power Guard Screen Grid Sensor™, Sentry Monitor, Solid Cinch speaker binding posts
- Machined aluminum front panel with a bead blast finish and gold anodizing
There’s no denying the historical significance of the 1969 Woodstock Music and Art Fair. There had never been anything like it, and many would argue there’s not been anything like it since. With an unexpected crowd of over 400,000 people, there was a lot that could have gone wrong – and some things did. But one aspect that’s nearly universally agreed upon was how great all the musicians sounded. That sound quality is thanks in part to the McIntosh MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifiers that exclusively powered the sound system used at Woodstock.1 The MC3500 would go on to power many other influential music events.
It was at a 2019 event to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock where McIntosh President Charlie Randall, realizing the historical importance of the MC3500, first dreamed of bringing it back into production. That proved no easy task considering it was first designed over 50 years ago. But after more than two years of development, that dream has become reality as McIntosh is proud to announce the MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II.
The MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II is a conservatively rated 350 Watt monoblock that takes its inspiration from the original 1968-71 MC3500 and incorporates everything we have learned about vacuum tubes amplifier design since the 1960s. It has been upgraded to modern standards and with modern components to deliver an audio performance worthy of its predecessor and the legacy of its shared model number – all while adhering to the original design as much as possible. Like the original MC3500, the MC3500 Mk II uses our Unity Coupled Circuit output transformer, which allows the full 350 Watts to be safely delivered to virtually any speaker regardless if it has 2, 4 or 8-Ohm impedance.
The MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II is powered by eight EL509S high-power output vacuum tubes. The EL509S tube was chosen specifically due to it having many similar qualities and characteristics of the 6LQ6 “sweep tubes” used on the original MC3500. Like the 6LQ6, the EL509S is very rugged thanks to its robust cathode and associated heating element which produces a high peak plate current capability in excess of 1 Amp.
Sweep tubes like the original 6LQ6 were primarily designed for 1950-60s era TVs where they would sweep the cathode ray gun in the picture tube across the phosphor screen. This was a very power-hungry process that required these high-powered sweep tubes. The use of sweep tubes by McIntosh engineers in the original MC3500 amplifier was a very cool and innovative application. By using the high-power EL509S vacuum tubes, the MC3500 Mk II amplifier remains as faithful as possible to the original MC3500 output design. In addition, just like in the original MC3500, the MC3500 Mk II uses an additional feedback loop to enhance the linearity of the output tubes.
Like the original MC3500, the MC3500 Mk II has a fully balanced driver section that utilizes three 12AX7A and one 12AT7 vacuum tube. The first 12AX7A is the differential input amp; the second is the buffer/driver for the voltage amp; the third is the voltage amp. The 12AT7 is the buffer/driver for the EL509S output tubes. All the vacuum tubes are located behind the power and output transformers and are covered by a 12-gauge stainless steel wire cage with a black powder-coated finish. The cage is shaped so that our patented, gold-plated Solid Cinch™ speaker binding posts are easily accessible even when the cage is installed.
McIntosh’s exclusive Power Guard Screen Grid Sensor™ (SGS) technology is included in the MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II. Power Guard SGS is designed specifically for our vacuum tube amplifiers and is similar in nature to our patented Power Guard® technology found in our solid-state amplifiers. Power Guard SGS helps prevent premature vacuum tube failure by monitoring the screen grid current in the output vacuum tubes. If the current becomes too high, a circuit in Power Guard SGS is activated which dynamically attenuates the input signal in real-time to keep the vacuum tubes operating at safe levels. The fully balanced driver section of the MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II is an ideal match to use with Power Guard SGS. Sentry Monitor™, which observes the output current and shuts the amplifier off if it ever exceeds safe limits, is also included.
Both a balanced and unbalanced input are included for connecting to your preamplifier and the rest of your home audio system. Balanced and unbalanced output is also included for multi-amp configurations, such as bi-amping or tri-amping.
Just as the original MC3500 did, the Mk II version has an output meter, though it’s larger and centered on the front panel instead of offset to the left side. This makes the meter easier to read and presents an asymmetrical look in a typical two-channel stereo system layout. The meter uses a variation of our DualView™ Power Output Meter design, with the top scale showing the power output in both Watts and decibels, while the bottom scale shows the amplifier warmup time. When powered on, the meter starts to slowly rise; once it reaches 100%, it drops back down to zero and the amplifier is ready to play music.
The MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II has handled just like the original, but they have a more ergonomic design that is friendlier on your hands when moving this 121 lb. (54.9 kg) heavyweight. The base of the chassis is stainless steel polished to a mirror finish. The front panel is machined aluminum with a bead blast finish and gold anodizing that emulates the look and finish of the original MC3500. A clear glass insert covers the meter; a black glass insert at the bottom houses the knobs and illuminated lettering.
As an homage to the look of the original MC3500, the Mk II features two U-shaped side rails that wrap around the top, back, and bottom of each side. Many of the original MC3500s were used on the road a lot and these side rails provided a lot of strength and durability. It is a very unique design element that we wanted to duplicate in the MC3500 Mk II. There were also four black rubber bumpers on the back of the rails that allowed the amp to be temporarily stood upright while setting up for shows; the bumpers were big enough to prevent any parts sticking off the back of the amplifier from scraping against the floor and being damaged. These bumpers have also been replicated on the MC3500 Mk II.
The MC3500 Vacuum Tube Amplifier Mk II is both a thoroughly modern and thoroughly retro amplifier. It’s inspired by the amplifier that helped inspire a generation. You can combine with a variety of preamplifiers, turntables, CD players, media streamers, speakers, and other specialty products to form a complete home audio system.
Orders ship Sunday through Friday from our offices in Dubai, UAE.
In-stock products typically ship within 48 hours and should be expected to arrive in 3-4 business days. Orders outside of the UAE should be expected to arrive in 5-7 business days.
Pre-order and backorder products will state the approximate delivery timeline beside the Add To Cart button.
If you would like to place a custom order, chat with our specialists for a guided shopping experience. Once your order has been placed, a timeline will be provided depending on your order details.
- Free delivery within the UAE
- Shipping charges will be calculated upon checkout for orders outside of the UAE (Bahrain, Oman, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia & Qatar).
- Taxes and duties are calculated according to the applicable laws of the state or country an item is shipped to and are the customer's responsibility.
For additional information on shipping and our exchange & return policy visit our help center.
Installation charges are applicable and can be paid upon delivery for our clients based in Dubai.
- Installation Charges: AED 350 Per Hour
- Speaker Cables: AED 20 Per Meter
- Trunking: AED 10 Per Meter
For clients based outside of the UAE, please contact our specialists and we will share an estimate based on your requirements.
The McIntosh audio system is a stereo system that uses two speakers or a multi-channel system using 3 to 12 speakers. Components are the individual units that individually will offer the highest performance and fidelity possible.
Connecting the various components into a complete system of source components, control center, amplifiers, and speakers will deliver the best possible sound.
Preamplifiers are Control Centers that switch source units, turn volume up and down, and in some cases allow tone shaping or turning bass and treble sounds up or down.
Amplifiers are the ‘Muscle’ of the audio system and amplify the small audio signal from the preamp to a large one that will operate speakers and determine how dynamic the reproduced sound of the system is in one unit.
Integrated amplifiers are single chassis models that combine the function of the preamplifier and power amplifier in one unit.
Precision McIntosh power meters allow the monitoring of sound level balance and output level between the two stereo, or many multi-channel speaker channels. Meters protect valuable speaker systems from damage as long as more watts than the speakers are designed to handle are not exceeded.
The McIntosh Output Autoformer is a special transformer that is designed and manufactured in-house by McIntosh. This allows any speaker type to be used with a McIntosh amplifier and have all of the power that the amp is designed to deliver.
All other amplifier designs will not have even power with differing speaker designs. McIntosh amplifiers with the output Autoformer™ will deliver ‘All the Power You Pay For’ regardless of speaker type chosen.
Quad Differential is the most sophisticated McIntosh amplifier design that allows the impossible combination of the most powerful amplifiers with the very lowest distortion and background noise. Many would say this is the impossible combination; highest power with lowest noise but Quad Balanced make the impossible possible.
Electromagnetic switching is used in McIntosh preamplifiers and integrated amplifiers to switch the variety of source components connected. Rather than the common mechanical switches that will deteriorate with wear, electromagnetic switches are high tech switching nodes that allow very long, trouble free operation.
Performance between vacuum tube and solid state (or transistor) gear is almost identical in technical specifications. Many users request vacuum tube units that offer a slightly classical "tube" or "warm" sound to the audio presentation.
Tube and solid state models may be mixed and will all work together in a McIntosh component stereo system. Many now use downloaded music as their main media source. Sound quality will always depend on the quality of the download files and the music system interface. McIntosh offers the most advanced computer USB interface in most of our preamplifiers and integrated amplifiers which will maximize audio performance.