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Robb Recommends: The McIntosh MTI100 Integrated Turntable Is Actually a Full-Fledged Stereo System

Just add a pair of speakers.

McIntosh MTI100 Courtesy of McIntosh Labs
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With the allure of the LP for many contemporary music listeners, it was only a matter of time until a high-end manufacturer would compose a contemporary riff on the 1960s-era portable stereo record player—the one-box “gateway drug” that introduced so many budding audiophiles to the joys of music listening. McIntosh, known for amplifiers like the iconic MC75 and one of America’s oldest audio names, has brilliantly combined a turntable and electronics in one elegant component: the MTI100 Integrated Turntable.

Although the platter and tonearm immediately identify this as a turntable, the brace of glowing 12AX7 vacuum tubes sprouting from the right side of the 3/8-inch thick black glass plinth seem an impossible sight, while volume and source selector knobs on the left leave no doubt as to the MTI100’s versatile talents.

McIntosh MTI100

Courtesy of McIntosh Labs

Especially appealing is the turnkey aspect of the package. The turntable features a 7-lb, aluminum platter with 33- and 45-rpm belt drive and precision-machined aluminum arm, which comes pre-installed with a Sumiko Olympia moving magnet cartridge, while a built-in shielded phono preamp lives under the plinth. But also inside the 33.5-lb chassis are a vacuum-tube preamp and solid-state amplification, the latter Class D, for obvious space-saving and thermal considerations. Delivering 50 watts into 8 ohms and 80 watts into 4, the power output is sufficient to drive medium- and high-efficiency loudspeakers, which will likely account for the majority of systems built around this compact system.

A wealth of input options and source functions include an unbalanced auxiliary input for a CD player, tuner or TV, digital audio coaxial and optical inputs, and a Bluetooth receiver with an antenna for streaming high-definition digital audio. A subwoofer output allows the addition of a powered sub for added low-end punch. Headphone listeners even get a dedicated ¼-inch jack for personal listening.

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