McIntosh activates retro charm with a stunning CD player


Much of today’s music consumption is digital, and most of it is streamed. And although vinyl sales recently overtook CDs for the first time since 1986, the format is not quite dead yet. Hi-Fi brand McIntosh Labs today released a retro-cool player for those who want to rock the house using spinning plastic discs.

McIntosh says his MCD85 SACD / CD player is designed to be distinctive, to be on display, and to tell anyone looking that “a serious music lover lives here.” It is definitely a stunner, featuring a black glass front panel with direct LED backlighting, silver trim, luminous logo, die-cast aluminum name badge on each side and buttons rotary controls.

MCD85 (second from left) takes its place among McIntosh’s retro-cool audio lineup

McIntosh Laboratories

The design puts it in good company, providing a similar vibe to the company’s MC275 and MC1502 vacuum tube amplifiers, MA252 and MA352 integrated amps, MC830 solid-state amp, C8 tube preamp and even the MHA200 headphone amplifier.

As a store-bought CD or SACD, the recordable CD or DVD data disc spins at 2x speed, a dual laser optical sensor reads the data on the disc and moves the information to the buffer for better tracking and better correction of errors. The unit supports playback of multiple formats including MP3, FLAC, DSD (up to DSD128) and WAV, and has a USB audio input that can handle up to DSD256 and DXD 384 kHz. The USB port can also be used to stream music from a computer. There are also four digital inputs (two coaxial and two optical) for PCM content up to 192 kHz.

The MCD85 converts digital data to analog for playback via a 32-bit / 192kHz digital-to-analog converter that dedicates four channels for left audio and four for right

The MCD85 converts digital data to analog for playback via an eight-channel, 32-bit / 192 kHz digital-to-analog converter.

McIntosh Laboratories

Whatever your digital music poison, the music will be converted to analog for playback via an eight-channel, 32-bit / 192kHz DAC.

Balanced and unbalanced connections allow connection to a built-in amp or preamp, and of course, there are power and data control ports for integration with McIntosh home audio equipment.

The MCD85 can be ordered now for US $ 4,500 – it’s a McIntosh after all. Shipping is expected to begin later this month.

Product sheet: MCD85


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