Bookshelf speaker (Gloss Black)
Our take on the McIntosh XR50 by Crutchfield's Dave Bar
Compact speakers with a big kick
With so much attention paid to McIntosh's audio components, with their famous glowing blue power meters and distinctive black glass front panels, you might have overlooked their speakers. That would be a real shame, because McIntosh speakers are every bit as musically explosive and dynamic as their other audio gear. And it's no wonder. McIntosh goes the extra mile with their speakers, exhaustively testing them in their full-size anechoic chamber, and carefully handcrafting each one from the finest materials in their Binghamton, New York factory. Despite being the most compact design in their lineup, McIntosh's XR50 bookshelf speaker delivers a terrific sonic wallop that you would only expect from a much larger speaker. It's ideal for use in the finest music and home theater systems.
The McIntosh XR50's midrange/tweeter array delivers spacious, wide-open sound.
Exceptional imaging, clarity, and power handling
The XR50's upper-frequency drivers are mounted to a heavy gauge alloy baffle for ultra-precise alignment. McIntosh places the XR50's 3/4" titanium dome tweeter between two 2" inverted dome midrange drivers for a smooth, even response pattern with spacious imaging and soundstaging. This multiple driver array also provides increased power handling, plus greater dynamic range and output with less distortion since each driver doesn't have to work as hard.
Patented woofer for powerful bass
The XR50's deep, powerful bass comes courtesy of a patented McIntosh 6" LD/HP® (Low Distortion/High Performance) woofer. Compared to conventional woofer designs, this driver feature an advanced magnetic circuit that significantly reduces distortion while increasing power handling and efficiency. Its rigid, die-cast alloy basket, four-layer copper voice coil, and polypropylene cone with a rubber surround acts as a near-perfect air piston for fast, articulate bass and superb transient response.
Beautiful inside and out
McIntosh builds each XR50 enclosure with non-parallel internal sides to reduce distortion caused by internal standing waves. Front-to-back and side-to-side braces form a rigid, well-dampened structure that resists performance-robbing vibrations. The cabinets are then completed with premium, real wood veneers with a high-gloss finish for a stylish, modern appearance. McIntosh tops off each speaker with an attractive magnetic grille that features invisible attachments to give the XR50 a clean, streamlined look when you remove it. Plus, this speaker's front-panel McIntosh emblem can be proudly illuminated by connecting the back-panel Power Control input jack to a compatible McIntosh component.
A world-famous audio heritage, made in America
Since its founding in 1949, McIntosh has defined the meaning of high-quality sound reproduction, while setting industry standards for superior performance and reliability. The company is based in Binghamton, New York, where its high-end components and speakers are still individually handcrafted by a team of skilled experts. This uncompromising dedication to quality has made McIntosh one of the most recognized and respected audio manufacturers in the world.
- frequency response: 40-45,000 Hz
- sensitivity: 81 dB
- impedance: 8 ohms nominal
- recommended power range: 75-300 watts
- 3/4" titanium dome tweeter with neodymium-iron-boron alloy magnet
- two 2" inverted dome midrange drivers with neodymium-iron-boron alloy magnets
- 6" poly cone woofer with patented LD/HP® (Low Distortion/High Performance) Shorting circuit design for deep, powerful bass
- non-resonant cast driver basket and rubber surround provides precise driver alignment for high-accuracy sound
- custom high-current crossovers with self-resetting PTC fuses for added speaker protection
- bass reflex (ported) cabinet design
- cross-braced cabinet with non-parallel sides for a rigid, acoustically inert structure and reduced internal standing waves
- McIntosh custom gold-plated five way binding posts
- back-lighted front-panel McIntosh logo (requires compatible McIntosh amplifier)
- Power Control input jack supplies power to illuminate McIntosh logo
- Power Control output jack supplies power for remote turn-on of additional components
- magnetically attached, acoustically transparent cloth grille
- handcrafted at McIntosh's Binghamton, New York factory
- 8"W x 17"H x 11-3/4"D
- weight: 19.5 lbs.
- warranty: 5 years
- Our 60-day money-back guarantee
What's in the Box:
- Bookshelf loudspeaker
- Owner's Manual
Very musical and easy on the ears. No shrill top end. I can listen for hours and enjoy the music without ear fatigue. Been listening to them for 2+ years.
Anonymous, Mountain Lakes,NJ
McIntosh XR50 Reviews
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Features and Specs
|Tweeter Size (inches)||0.75|
|Midrange Size (inches)||2|
|Woofer Size (inches)||6|
|Frequency Response||40-45k Hz|
|Mounting Bracket Included||No|
|Recommended Stand Height (inches)||18-24|
|Parts Warranty||5 Years|
|Labor Warranty||5 Years|
3 Upper Frequency Drivers: McIntosh's XR50 bookshelf loudspeaker utilizes 3 upper-frequency drivers. There is one 0.75" titanium dome tweeter and two 2" midrange inverted titanium dome drivers. The tweeter and midrange drivers are precisely aligned on the precision machined mounting plate of 0.625" inch thick aluminum. Their unique layout and crossover design combine high power handling with precise sound-staging. Locating the tweeter between the two midrange drivers generates a symmetrical polar response for superior imaging. Since the audio power is distributed among all the drivers, each driver does not have to work as hard, resulting in greater power handling capability, dramatic reduction in distortion, and greater dynamic range.
Dual Midrange Drivers: There are several benefits when using multiple Midrange drivers. First, there is a substantial increase in power handling capacity far greater than a single larger diameter midrange driver. Second, due to mutual acoustic coupling there is an increase in output volume while at the same time a reduction in audible distortion.
Neodymium-Iron-Born Alloy Magnets: The 0.75" tweeter and two 2" midrange drivers all employ a neodymium-iron-born alloy magnet. Neodymium-iron-boron alloy has the highest flux density per unit of volume. This allows for a smaller physical size driver and thus closer driver-to-driver placement for improved dispersion.
Patented LD/HP Woofer: The low frequency section of the XR50 bookshelf loudspeaker consists of a newly designed McIntosh patented LD/HP 6" woofer. The McIntosh patented LD/HP woofer offers increased power handling and produces incredible deep bass with low distortion. The woofer features a polypropylene cone with a rubber surround and has a four layer copper voice coil, so it can perform as a near perfect air piston. The rear vent through the magnetic assembly offers improved heat dissipation. The die-cast basket has an open air area under the voice coil/spider assembly to prevent displacement noise. All together these advances in woofer design construction and materials produce the very important first several octaves of music, with a high degree of accuracy and superb transient response.
Precision Crossover Network: The crossover network used in the XR50 loudspeaker is designed to ensure an even frequency response over the entire audible range. The 2nd order designed network utilizes capacitors and inductors with high-current capacity. The Capacitors used are the low loss (ESR) types. The low-loss (DCR) inductor used in each section of the crossover network has been chosen for high linearity, even at high power levels. This prevents distortion of the music at any frequency. The crossover network also utilizes self resetting high current PTC fuses to provide an extra measure of protection.
Bass Port: The McIntosh XR50 bookshelf loudspeaker utilizes a vertical port with a rear opening to increase bass output, reduce distortion and improve the overall efficiency of the loudspeaker.
Real Wood Veneer, Rigid Enclosure: The XR50 loudspeaker enclosure is constructed with non-parallel internal sides to reduce internal standing waves. It has multiple front-to-back and side-to-side internal braces to form a dampened rigid loudspeaker enclosure. The XR50 is available in various real wood veneers with a high gloss polyester finish. Fine gloss wood finishes are offered in Black or Red Walnut. These high-gloss finishes and fine cabinetry will be a welcome addition to even the most elegant homes.
Magnetic Grille: The custom designed molded loudspeaker front grille is covered with a neutral black cloth and is secured to the speaker cabinet using neodymium magnets. The magnetically attached grill exhibits nearly perfect acoustic transparency. The design of the XR50 loudspeaker took into account the acoustic characteristics of the front-panel grille and it should be attached to the loudspeaker for the best sonic performance.
Gold-Plated, Binding-Post Terminals: The bookshelf loudspeaker features McIntosh Patented gold-plated, binding-post terminals to receive high current power & audio signal from your power amplifier, integrated amplifier, or receiver. These binding post terminals will accept large diameter wire (up to 10AWG), banana plugs (single only), and spade lugs.
Applications: The McIntosh XR50 bookshelf loudspeaker is sleek and contemporary in appearance while producing full-range audio sound. The XR50 bookshelf speaker is designed for both music and home theater systems, and can fill medium to large rooms with full-range sound. Amplifiers from 75 to 300 watts are appropriate power for the XR50 speaker.
Mounting Options: The bookshelf loudspeaker is designed to be placed vertically on a stand, shelf, desk, table-top, or other flat surface. It does not provide a keyhole slot, threaded insert, or integrated bracket to wall-mount the speaker.
Placement: Loudspeaker placement in a room can greatly affect performance. Placement near a wall, corner, floor, ceiling or any intersecting surfaces will reinforce or diminish some bass frequencies. Try various locations by listening to music containing continuous bass and finding a location where there is an over all musical balance in the sound and the bass content does not dominate. There should be an unobstructed area in front of the Loudspeaker of at least 30 either side from the center axis for the best performance. The distance between the loudspeakers and the listener to the loudspeakers should form an acute isosceles triangle. If the speakers are too far apart relative to the listener, some imaging can be lost. The bookshelf speaker should also be placed as close to ear level as possible.
Front-Panel Logo Illumination: The even Illumination of the front-panel "McIntosh logo is accomplished by the combination of custom designed light diffusers and extra long-life light emitting diodes (LEDs).
Power Control: The Power Control Input (3.5mm) supplies power to illuminate the XR50's McIntosh Logo, while the Power Control Output (3.5mm) supplies power for remote turn-on of additional Components.
Loudspeaker Protection: The XR50's built-in speaker protection incorporates three automatic resetting solid-state devices in the crossover network. One protects the tweeters, one for the midrange drivers, and one for the woofers.
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