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Harmonic Distortion Analysis in a Class-AB Tube Amplifier: The McIntosh MC-240

Some Class-AB tube amplifiers remain in demand for audiophiles due to their linear gain stages, low feedback, and minimal high-order harmonic distortion. The McIntosh MC240 Class-AB tube amplifier is a benchmark, high-quality stereo amplifier from the 1960s. This presentation gives an overview of the restoration of the amplifier to achieve a satisfactory level of performance, examination of the electrical topology in relation to the output signal’s distortion characteristics, and detailed analysis of the distortions produced by the amplifier using psychoacoustic-based listening tests as well as standard benchmark tests.

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AES - Audio Engineering Society