Australian Hi-Fi



Last year, Aussies in the five metropolit­an capitals spent nearly 13 hours a week listening to commercial radio, according to Commercial Radio Australia’s annual listening summary (based on eight GfK radio surveys). That’s representa­tive of a global upsurge in radio listening of late (perhaps due to You Know What) — and one that McIntosh hopes to capitalise on with its new MR89 AM/FM Tuner.

The MR89 promises to “maximise sound quality from AM/FM broadcasts” with a slew of fine adjustment­s, ranging from sensitivit­y and separation to signal-to-noise ratio. Much like the current MR87, the new model boasts the US giant’s proprietar­y RF (radio frequency) circuitry. McIntosh reckons this technology can receive ultra-strong FM signals from nearby stations — something that can overload lesser tuners. The result? Extremely low playback distortion.

McIntosh has seemingly gone the extra mile to improve sound quality for radio listening by introducin­g a number of features, one of which, Softmute, works to reduce audio output when receiving low quality stations and betweensta­tion static and noise.

Placement of the (wired) RAA2 AM antenna should be a doddle thanks to the advanced signal-quality monitor, which displays detailed multi-path noise levels — useful informatio­n, no doubt, when standing on a chair waving the antenna around in search of that elusive ‘sweet spot’!

While design-wise everything is all very McIntosh, with the usual eye-pleasing black-glass front panel and stainless steel chassis, the famous green-lit power meters have been tweaked this time round to show the radio signal being delivered. Handy.

There’s no DAB here, and no option to stream internet radio stations, meaning the MR89 is strictly for the AM/FM enthusiast. It does, however, offer the ability to store 20+ preset stations and has the usual analogue and digital outputs.

McIntosh, which has recently been purchased by Dallasbase­d private investment firm Highlander Partners as part of the McIntosh Group acquisitio­n, has an impressive track record when it comes to tuners, having made some of the best models of the 1970s (remember the MR78?).

Available to order now, with stock arriving shortly, the McIntosh MR89 AM/FM Tuner costs $11,495 (RRP).

For more informatio­n, contact Synergy Audio Visual on (03) 9459 7474 or at www.synergyaud­

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