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Yamaha A S1100 vs MAC 4100

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by efraley, Jun 11, 2021 at 9:01 AM.

  1. efraley

    efraley Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Richmond Va USA
    OI own a refurbished Mac 4100 receiver and have been happy with it. However, just like folks who get a new car every couple of years, I was looking at the Yamaha integrated because it is newer and affordable. I use an Oppo 205, Ohm tower speakers and a Pro Ject Debut Carbon TT (that I only use a couple of times a month). Would I really hear a difference? I listen to mainly Americana with the usual boomer rock, Beatles, Stones, etc. I also have a number of SACDs and MFSL/DCC gold that I listen to. Any opinions?
     
  2. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    I'd rather have the McIntosh MAC 4100 over the Yamaha. Better built, better engineered, designed to be serviced. That said, the MA 6200 integrated is what I'd most want. And pair a MR 74 tuner, or MX 113 tuner/preamplifier with it.

    For me, the MR 74 was the best sounding SS McIntosh tuner of all, the MR 78 was entirely designed by Richard Modafferi, but the MR 74 was designed by the engineers who did each stage best. MR 78's super narrow is an advantage in Athens, due to being between Knoxville and Chattanooga as we have many adjacent and we have two frequencies which have a FM on both, 93.1 and 94.3 are those two. We have many second adjacent stations as well.
     
    Khorn and sberger like this.
  3. efraley

    efraley Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Richmond Va USA
    Thanks for your reply.
     
  4. russk

    russk Forum Resident

    Location:
    Syracuse NY
    Sound wise I’d take the Yamaha all day over the 4100. Investment wise the Mac wins hands down. Looks wise would be a toss up for me.
     
    rednedtugent and Rick58 like this.
  5. head_unit

    head_unit Forum Resident

    Location:
    Los Angeles CA USA
    er well yes but no, receivers do not wear out like cars do. Now, like cars, you may get bored and want to change, that's a different story.

    If you think so, yes. If you think not, no. ;) OK, actually I'm serious, I believe psychology has a lot to do with it. A different factor is if the Yamaha has variable loudness, that can certainly change your listening experience. Personally I'd be more interested in measuring the bass response, and unless incredibly lucky in that regard, getting room correction into the chain.
     
  6. Joseph.McClure

    Joseph.McClure Forum Resident

    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Does that model have variable loudness?
     
  7. Is there any way you could get loan of a Yamaha to plug into your system to compare? If it’s not substantially better either sick with the McIntosh if you like the sound or up the game substantially.
    Are you unhappy with certain aspects of the sound your getting now that you want to improve?
     
  8. aunitedlemon

    aunitedlemon Music is medicine, dose often.

    Nope. That feature is lost once you move on from the A-S301, 501, 701, 801, etc. I really liked the loudness feature on my 801 and was concerned I'd miss it when I moved on. My A-S3200 sounds excellent at any and every volume level.
     
    Rick58 likes this.
  9. Joseph.McClure

    Joseph.McClure Forum Resident

    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    I have a 701 and love that feature - didn't move any higher due to concerns I'd miss it too much.
     
    George P likes this.
  10. aunitedlemon

    aunitedlemon Music is medicine, dose often.

    I particularly appreciated the loudness feature for late night listening. I think the speakers I chose (JBL L82's) are exceptional at sounding wholesome and even across all volumes. Those paired w/ the unflappable clarity of the A-S3200 and I'm still really enjoying late night listening. I can say that for those that like the 301,501,701's etc., the next tier of Yamaha's is just so much more of that wonderful sounding amplification. There's a holographic lushness present that I wasn't experiencing w/ my A-S801. I'm not slighting the A-S801, that amp stoked my listening fire, but there is a notably audible difference between those two tiers of Yamaha's.

    So, +1 for the Yamaha! :)
     
    bluemooze and Joseph.McClure like this.
  11. Gibsonian

    Gibsonian Forum Resident

    Location:
    Iowa, USA
    Guessing Yammi wins for SQ, but this would be a good competition to report out for you OP!
     
  12. Vibrolux_Reverb

    Vibrolux_Reverb Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans, LA
    The A-S1100 is an amazing amp. I think you will absolutely love it. One thing to note about it, is that it takes a good bit of burn in to sound really great. It is very nice right out of the gate though, but expect it to improve a good bit within the first 100 hours or so of play.

    The Yamaha is the closest solid state amp that I have personally heard that authentically sound like a tube amp. I have put it against tube and hybrid amps and I thought it honestly sounded more like a great tube amp than actual tube amps within the same price range. Sounds crazy, but that is what I hear and was a big reason that I got one. It has a great phono section as well. Not just good, but really great.
     
    aunitedlemon, Bill Mac and Rick58 like this.
  13. big_pink_floyd_toole

    big_pink_floyd_toole I am not a bat

    Location:
    USA
    Maybe maybe not. You will have to try it out. If your Mac is functioning properly, the difference should be subtle to nonexistent.
     
  14. Ohm tower speakers? What are the specs to establish driving requirements.
     
  15. Vibrolux_Reverb

    Vibrolux_Reverb Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans, LA
    They are voiced very differently. It will sound noticeably different, but which sounds better is in the ear of the beholder.
     
    Rick58 and ggergm like this.
  16. ggergm

    ggergm Sir Guy

    Location:
    Minnesota
    This.

    My experience is that Yamaha's family sound and McIntosh's family sound are quite different. The companies have different perspectives in the voicing of their gear. @efraley, I don't think the differences in the sound between the two amps will be subtle at all assuming the rest of the gear is sufficiently revealing. Are you Ohms ones with the Walsh driver? Those speakers were very room dependent but in general I liked their bigger ones a lot. They also were a little tough to drive, which alone could cause a difference between the amps. Your other gear is good enough to hear the difference.

    Rather than do any quick A/Bs, where you listen to a cut or maybe a CD on one amp before switching to the other, listen to each amp for a long time. Take a couple of days to get comfortable with each amp. You'll find which one you really like that way. You've got to find the one that fits you and like new shoes, you often don't know if they are right immediately. You obviously know the sound of your Mac. Get well acquainted with the Yamaha. When you do an A/B comparison, you tend to like the louder one, or the punchier one, or the brighter one. Whatever trips your trigger. You don't find out which is the better one. That's something you hear after staying with an amp for a while and then making the swap.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2021 at 1:56 PM
    wgb113, russk, Rick58 and 1 other person like this.
  17. Vibrolux_Reverb

    Vibrolux_Reverb Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans, LA

    Well said.
     
  18. efraley

    efraley Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Richmond Va USA
    Thanks for everyone's opinion. I'll try to try out a Yamaha if I can.
     
  19. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    Yamaha does build nice Boat Motors and Wave Runners. Their organs and guitars are great. With a name like Nippon Gakki, they have to be good. I prefer McIntosh parts and service support to Yamaha all day long, especially past 5-6 years of age.
     
    bluemooze and Khorn like this.
  20. big_pink_floyd_toole

    big_pink_floyd_toole I am not a bat

    Location:
    USA
    Macintosh 4100:
    THD = .05% max to rated power
    FR = 20hz - 20khz +0, -0.5db

    Yamaha A-S1100:
    THD = <0.2% max 0.5W-100W
    FR = 20hz - 20khz +0, -0.2db

    Both essentially flat across the audible range with minimal distortion.
     
  21. Helom

    Helom Forum member

    Location:
    U.S.
    My A-S1100 sounds nothing like my AHB2 even though they should sound very close in theory.
     
    bluemooze likes this.
  22. big_pink_floyd_toole

    big_pink_floyd_toole I am not a bat

    Location:
    USA
    I interpreted “voicing” as frequency response. Is there another way we can identify “voicing”?
     
  23. lonelysea

    lonelysea the chlorine in your eyes

    Location:
    The North
    I’ve directly compared modern Yamaha gear against modern McIntosh gear up and down both ranges and that’s why I’ve gone with Yamaha. Their amps simply sound better.
     
  24. Helom

    Helom Forum member

    Location:
    U.S.
    listening
     
    Davey likes this.
  25. big_pink_floyd_toole

    big_pink_floyd_toole I am not a bat

    Location:
    USA
    So we can’t measure “voicing”? Only the human ear can detect it?
     

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