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McIntosh MAC-3 Digital Preamp / Surround Decoder, w/AC-3

Sale price£0.00
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Pickup currently unavailable at SkyFi 479

Mcintosh Mac3 Digital Preamp / Surround Decoder Ac-3 Processor

McIntosh MAC-3 Digital Preamp / Surround Decoder, w/AC-3

SkyFi 479

Pickup currently unavailable

479 South Broad Street
Glen Rock NJ 07452
United States


Now that most systems have gone fully digital, this piece from McIntosh is back in style. It can be the center of an all digital setup offering several digital inputs and a set of analog outputs for connecting your amplifier.

It can also be paired with an earlier MX processor from McIntosh that did not include built-in digital processing.

Not intended for those that are looking to do Hi-Res audio, but rather for connecting a CD transport and a basic streamer.

This piece has typical McIntosh sound and build quality so it's a great value considering what you're getting in a single box.

This MAC-3 looks super clean and is working perfectly. We paired it with a brand new remote which controls volume, mute, source selection, and surround toggle. Some front panel functions cannot be controlled with this remote control.

Please see our photos for full specifications.

McIntosh MAC-3 Manual

McIntosh Performance Features Include:
20 Bit Conversion
• Three 20 bit stereo digital to analog, (D/A) converters are used to reproduce the six decoded Dolby Digital audio channels, and one 20 bit stereo analog to digital, (A/D) converter is for signals fed into the analog inputs.

• 24 Bit DSP Processing
Two Motorola 24 Bit Digital Processors decode both Dolby Digital and Pro Logic signals. This combination is one of the most powerful processing systems available.

• Digital Input Switching
Four Digital Coaxial and matching Optical inputs are provided for four program sources:
1. Digital Versatile Disc (DVD)
2. Laser Video Disc Player (LV)
3. Satellite Tuner or Receiver (SAT) 4. CD Player (CD1)

*The LV AC-3 RF INPUT receives RF signals from a Laser Video Disc Player reproducing Dolby Digital sound tracks. The ANALOG Stereo Input accept stereo signals from any audio source.

Click below to add our recommended matching cables from Kimber Kable, all brand new as SkyFi is an official Kimber dealer.

Kimber Kable - RCA Interconnects - Better

Kimber Kable - RCA Interconnects - Best

Kimber Kable - Coaxial Digital Interconnect

Kimber Kable - Optical Digital Interconnect

Kimber Kable - Power Cords - Good

Kimber Kable - Power Cords - Better

Kimber Kable - 14AWG (Gauge) Power Cords - Best

The SkyFi Testing Process for DACs:
We start with a visual inspection of all internal components to make sure that there are no signs of heat stress or damage. Capacitors are checked for telltale signs of predictive failure including bulging, shrunken wrappers, or physical leakage. We also inspect resistors and other passive components for signs of overheating.

After the visual inspection we connect the DAC’s RCA outputs to our Sencore PA81 Power Analyzer which simulates a real world input impedance and allows us to monitor the output on an oscilloscope. We are equipped to test optical, coaxial, and USB inputs at Redbook CD Quality. We start with a test signal to verify signal lock and proper output on both channels. If the DAC has balanced outputs these are also tested at this time. If the DAC has multiple Optical and Coaxial inputs they are all checked for proper lock. USB inputs are tested with a Macbook Pro.

After proper function is verified, we set the DAC up for a listening test to evaluate general audio reproduction quality and monitor for clicks, pops, or any other audible signs of issues related to dropped signal lock or failing audio output stages. We often connect DACs under evaluation to our long term test rig for a long test stint to verify stability under real world operating conditions.



Original Box

Not Included


Not Included


Yes Included


Yes - Power Only

Physical Condition (Info Here)

7 / 10

Working Condition

10 / 10

SKU: 104002