Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby jeager » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:11 pm

Ok, so I started using an MC 250 with my SMS pre and I love the sound man. Its great. One concern I have though is that it is almost as old as I am and my decide to to take a day off when I most need it for a gig. The other is that I would really like to make it as easy to set up for gigs as possible. I want to minimize the number of trips and space taken on the "stage".

Would there be a safe way to mount the thing in the same rack case as my SMS and Furman? Maybe in an 8 space or something like that.

Have people had any dependability issues with The MCs that I need to watch out for?

I have ordered a Rocktron V300 to try out thinking if I like it enough, I will go that route and have any easily rackable transportable rig. I don't think I will like as well though, the MC really does sound amazing and it seems like the Rocktron stuff is made for folks who like to play with lots of distortion, compression, coloration. The polar opposite of what the MC does really. I figure I will give it a chance since it is so easy to manage though. Maybe I will post some A/B sound-clips and we can play guess the power amp.

Who has a great MC rack mount idea for me?
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby strumminsix » Mon Apr 11, 2011 2:21 pm

A few thoughts: have a good tech check out your mac, and never gig without a backup :lol:
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby mijknahs » Mon Apr 11, 2011 4:34 pm

Yes, have a good tech check out the amp and replace questionable components (electrolytic caps, etc.). The amp should last you another 30 years. No different than an old Fender Twin from the late 60's or early 70's. They need to be cared for but can go for a long time with proper maintanence.

Stu Allen had his MC250 "rack mounted". I think basically you need to block and brace the amp. Probably a wooden rack (usually the carpeted kind) would work the best since you can put screws or nail in it. I was thinking of putting some short wooden blocks around the amp so it doesn't slide around in the rack.
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby JonnyBoy » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:36 pm

Been thinking about this too. I was thinking about making its OWN rack with handles. that way it can be transported and stacked upon easier, ie my transport dolly. Remember to let it breathe so it can cool down naturally on stage. They are just too cumbersome to move without a system to do so. Lately I make a special trip to the car to the stage to get, I think the tone is worth that trip. I made a mistake piling my MC50 on top of other gear on a dolly, and it fell about a foot to the ground (not a bad fall, but bad enough). From there it has been sick, but It seems to be the transistors so it wont be a bad fix. Its shape sucks for stacking and moving on a dolly and its weight makes it an easy fall hazard. It needs a custom box for stability and protection. I couldn't lift a rack with all my other gear and that bolted to it in and out of the truck/car and be happy with that. that would be too hard to and fro 3/4 times a week. If I used a Ryder tuck with a ramp like big stage acts, then on a wheeled rack it would go....
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby Pete B. » Mon Apr 11, 2011 5:57 pm

I'm envisioning a regular 8-space rack (or whatever size is tall enough), with removable front/back.
The MC250 (in my case) fits in such that with the front of the rack removed you are looking at the McIntosh 250 logo, which puts the connections and knobs on the left (looking at the front).
You mount an L-bracket near the back of the rack. One side of the L-bracket is mounted inside the rack, on the left side towards the back (maybe just above the left side handle). The other leg of the L-bracket has two speaker jacks mounted and are semi-permanently hooked to the amp (just take the back off and plug in).
You can reach in on the left front side to turn the volume knobs up/down.
There are mounting screw holes in the bottom of the Mac.
Maybe Place an inch of closed-cell foam between the bottom of the Mac and the bottom of the rack. You will need to drill 4 holes in the bottom of the rack to mount the Mac to the rack.

Basically I want to...
Put This:
Image

Into something like this:
Image

I haven't taken a single measurement yet, so this might all be a dream. 8)

In the meantime...
Hell Yes I'm ready for the Garden Party!!! :cool:
I'll just set m'Amp up raaat'cheere!
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby JonnyBoy » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:32 pm

Pete that scares me to have that amp teeter todder on a saw horse :shock: ! What you are proposing is exactly what I am thinking without knowing measurements. Also, I was thinking all those holes on the bottom of the amp are there to get cool air into the amp and exhale through the upper cage, but I dunno for sure. Otherwise they make awesome mounting holes!! I was only wondering about foaming it all up on the bottom?

I think that is the route I will take, as you proposed, but build it myself out of thin ply like a road case. Oh, and reinforce the corners like a road case, only so I can make the box to fit I guess... By the time I'm done though I prolly could buy one for $50 more and save the hassle. As of now, I just set mine on my 2x12 that I set length wise on a wheeled dolly, the jerry rack on 3/4 of the cab and the mac fits perfect in the space left. I wish I knew how to angle the cab with it all like that though... My wonder is how much air it needs and how much cushion is gonna choke it. I would hate to burn up transistors and such.
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby mijknahs » Mon Apr 11, 2011 9:42 pm

How about taking the feet of amp and use those holes to mount it from the bottom? You could have screws coming up through the rack and going into the amp holding it in place. It means you'd have to get it measured perfectly right.
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby Grant » Tue Apr 12, 2011 12:12 am

mijknahs wrote:How about taking the feet of amp and use those holes to mount it from the bottom? You could have screws coming up through the rack and going into the amp holding it in place. It means you'd have to get it measured perfectly right.

that's what stu does right?
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby Pete B. » Tue Apr 12, 2011 8:17 am

While you could use those rubber-foot holes, in addition to the holes where the four rubber-feet are mounted, there are other screw holes in the bottom.
Mine arrived screwed down to a plank of wood using 4 of those extra mounting holes.
You wouldn't need to block the surface of the bottom with foam...
Just use a 2x2" square at the mounting points.
'Just looking to cushon the ride a bit, not block any venting.

That pic of the Mac on the ledge... 'just found it on the 'net (and thought you would like it).
[wince! :shock: ].
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby jenkins » Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:32 am

Im not sure about the mc250 but most mac's are rack mountable.
I have an mc2100 and an mc2505 that r rack mounted right now just using macintosh rack wings.
having it in its own rack is pretty key IMO bc they are so heavey.
But my macs have been super dependable for me.
Also you shouldn't need a backup unless you are using both channels all the time.
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby strumminsix » Tue Apr 12, 2011 10:41 am

jenkins wrote:Also you shouldn't need a backup unless you are using both channels all the time.


Not being argumentative, but how can anyone gig without back-up gear? I've seen a cymbal fall and slice a cable!
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby mijknahs » Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:21 am

jenkins wrote:I have an mc2100 and an mc2505 that r rack mounted right now just using macintosh rack wings.


How exactly did you rack mount the MC2100? I'm familiar with the rack wings for the panel macs like the 2105 and the 2120 (my 2120 has rack wings and it's in a rack) but the 2100?
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby SpaceYrface43 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 11:46 am

mijknahs wrote:How about taking the feet of amp and use those holes to mount it from the bottom? You could have screws coming up through the rack and going into the amp holding it in place. It means you'd have to get it measured perfectly right.


This is the solution me and my buddy came up with for my MC50. Worked out well but it never leaves the house as i am not a gigging musician.
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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby SarnoMusicSolutions » Tue Apr 12, 2011 1:12 pm

Those rubber foot screw holes are merely threaded into the sheet metal. Not necessarily the kind of grip you want for rugged road use. Probably should run nuts and bolts thru them, and really the whole thing should be shock mounted somehow.

They really aren't road amps. Designed for permanent installs.

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Re: Mac Amps, dependability, transporting and racking?

Postby SpaceYrface43 » Tue Apr 12, 2011 3:03 pm

I think the guys that want Mac"s should lean more towards the 2505,2105 and the 2120 as they can be racked more easily. They sell for around the same price as the others without the face plates anyhow. The 2105 seems popular and are pricey but thats what i want next. Hell i saw a MC50 go last week on the bay for $1100.00. That just nuts.
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