McIntosh Power Controller Aims to Protect Your Gear

McIntosh Power Controller Aims to Protect Your Gear

McIntosh today introduced a high-end surge-protection system designed to shield up to eight components from potentially damaging power surges caused by lightning strikes.

Featuring McIntosh’s signature black-glass front panel with its illuminated logo, control knobs, and aluminum end caps, the MPC500 Power Controller ($2,500) delivers cascaded surge protection: In addition to full mode AC power-line surge protection, it protects low-voltage devices against secondary spikes and surges that can occur after a lightning strike.

The MPC500 also includes an EMI filter to rid AC lines of electromagnetic interference and protects AV gear against potentially damaging over/under-voltage conditions that aren’t necessarily caused by a storm.

AC power-line protection is handled by three thermally protected metal-oxide varistors (TPMOVs), which provide line to neutral, line to ground, and neutral to ground protection. McIntosh says TPMOVs offer better protection than the standard MOVs used in most surge protectors.

For secondary surge events, the MPC500 draws on three types of devices — gas discharge tubes (GDT), positive temperature coefficient (PTC) thermistors, and transient voltage suppression (TVS) components — to protect low-voltage devices connected via ethernet or coaxial cable.

In the U.S., the MPC500 is equipped with eight common Type B receptacles — six switched, two unswitched — but in Europe has only four Type F (a.k.a. “Schuko”) receptacles.

Each receptacle can be configured via control ports on the back panel or through setup menus on the front panel. A digital readout on the front panel shows input voltage, the amount of current being drawn through the receptacles, or total (apparent) power.

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