Naim vs Macintosh Amps (The Truth)

Norvan Martin
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Every time it comes to sound systems, people demand quality. They want to enjoy music from their devices and radio stations from excellently built, high-quality sound systems. In this article, we compare Naim and Macintosh by looking at the various aspects to consider when determining the better option between the two.

Naim vs Macintosh Amps Comparison Table

Brand ReputationHighly RespectedIconic Legacy
Sound QualityRich and DetailedExceptional Clarity
Build Quality/DesignPremium and ModernClassic and Robust
Product RangeSpecialized SelectionDiverse Options
PricingHigh-endLuxury Range
FeaturesAdvanced TechnologiesUnique Features, VU Meters

Features Of Naim and Macintosh

Naim Audio, just like McIntosh Labs, is an audio company that specializes in electronic products. Both companies design and produce handmade music systems for the entertainment industry.Mcintosh Amps

Despite Apple Company acting as the hegemon in the last few decades, the two companies have been able to rise above doubts and provide quality services to their clients.

Naim products are fitted with Wi-Fi, enabling users to stream music from the internet. For McIntosh, some products do not have Wi-Fi, limiting its users to enjoying music from other output devices.

Naim Supernait 3 Integrated Amplifier

Naim products have a built-in Chrome cast that uses the cloud to stream content to your TV to allow users to enjoy their services fully. The result is clear pictures of Ultra High Definition (UHD) videos.

Sound Quality Of Naim And Macintosh

The accuracy, fidelity, and intelligibility of audio input from an electronic source are critical in a sound system.

Generally, music lovers want a system that can minimize or reduce noise while producing high-quality sound.

Although Naim products are manufactured with high precision, McIntosh amplifiers output sound of much higher quality than Naim amplifiers, while McIntosh delivers a signal-to-noise ratio of 110, Naim does not disclose its signal-to-noise ratio; therefore, buyers are not informed of the exact measure of the clarity of their products.

McIntosh applies the 12AX7A and 12AT7 valves in the pre-amplifier stage and the transistor in its output stage. This explains its incredible sound quality.

The sound of McIntosh blends well, producing eye-catching aesthetics, power, and sonic integrity, giving it the ability to capture the imagination of music fanatics and home theatre enthusiasts for a long time.

Connectivity Of Naim And Macintosh

RCA Cables

Both Naim and McIntosh products easily connect a powered subwoofer or second amplifier comfortably. They both have a stereo RCA cable, an electrical connector used to relay audio and video signals.

Coaxial Cables

Naim has a coaxial cable surrounded by a concentric conducting shield with two shields separated by a dialect. However, McIntosh has five analog inputs compared to only one in Naim products.

Input Jacks

McIntosh has a phono input which is a set of input jacks, usually mini jacks. Phono input boosts the level of signals and allows the RIAA equalization ( a form of emphasis on recording and de-emphasis on playback), which is vital to restoring the original sound. Naim lacks a phono input.

Both products have a headphone output. In Naim, the result is 3.55mm while McIntosh is 1/4 inch, making size to be the only difference here.

A 3.5mm jack is very common in consumer electronics, while home or studio devices have the larger ¼ inch jack. However, this does not affect the quality of the sound.

Bluetooth Connectivity

Naim products such as the Naim Uniti Atom are fitted with Bluetooth, enabling users to enjoy music from the devices through a wireless medium. Bluetooth 3.0, also known as high speed, is very fast and allows multiple wireless headphones to operate.

They also have Wi-Fi 802.11ac, also known as Gigabit Wi-Fi, a proposed specification in the 802.11ac family applicable to WLANs ( Wireless Local Area Networks). It is ideal for mobile devices and is more efficient in energy saving than the 802.1a standard.

Durability Of Naim And Macintosh

Both products can withstand wear, pressure, or damage for a long time. They are designed to last for a long time while in good condition resisting breakage and deterioration.

McIntosh 1900

However, a comparison between the two products shows that McIntosh can last longer than Naim products while maintaining a balanced drive and better sound.

People enjoy setting it up and getting the reward of quality, durability, and listening to music they love comfortably. Although Macintosh products are more expensive, you get value for your money.

Naim quotes a two-year warranty for all its products and parts warranty (manufacturer’s warranty period for replacement parts), while McIntosh extends its parts warranty to 3 years.

Naim amps

The labor warranty (the manufacturer’s warranty period for labor) is two years for Naim products and three years for McIntosh products. This makes McIntosh products considered more customer-friendly since they offer extended warranty periods and offer better after-sale services too.

Naim And Macintosh Products

As we mentioned already, Naim and Macintosh manufacture a range of products. Let’s look at some of the products they send to the market.


Some of the speakers from Naim include:

  • Edifier R101V,
  • Edifier/walker R18T, and
  • Harman Kardon Onyx Studio 7-Blue.

Some of the McIntosh speakers include:  

  • XRT2.1K,
  • XRT1.1K,
  • XR100, and
  • XR50.


McIntosh amplifiers meet the needs of many. However, it does not have streaming but four digital inputs to allow the users to enjoy music from their devices.

The amplifiers are monitored by a micro-processor which reduces clipping of the signal.

Naim produces amplifiers such as:

  • NAIT XS 3,
  • NAIT 5SI,
  • NAP S1,
  • NAP 500 DR.

McIntosh amplifiers include:

  • MC901,
  • MC2KW,
  • MC1.25KW,
  • MC611,
  • MC3500.


Naim also produces turntables such as the Solstice special edition, which combines core Naim design philosophies, such as multiple levels of mechanical decoupling.

It features a magnetic bearing supporting a high mass, polished aluminum platter with a unique self-calibrating motor drive system.

On the other hand, McIntosh has produced many turntables, including the MT100, which is an integrated turntable with a modern home audio system for a modern lifestyle.

The MT10 is a precision turntable with a moving coil cartridge fitted with an illuminated speed meter to gauge its speed. MT5 is also a precision turntable with a high-output coil cartridge and has a dust cover.


Naim and Macintosh are both reputable companies. Whether you choose Naim or Macintosh will depend highly on the sound quality you desire, your budget, and even market availability and compatibility with existing systems. Read the article carefully to ensure you make the right decision. Also, check out Bryson vs McIntosh.

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Norvan Martin is the founder of He is a professional Electronics Engineer and is passionate about home theater systems and AV electronics. BoomSpeaker was created as an online hub to share his knowledge and experiences as it relates to home theaters and home audio electronics. My email: [email protected]  Connect on Pinterest and Linkedin