Goldpoint/McIntosh C20 Level Control
Replaces your old worn out McIntosh C20 volume control.
This is the very best volume control ever made for a McIntosh.
Front two wafers: 100K, audio taper. Rear two wafers: 1 Meg linear taper.
This upgrade requires moving or replacing a certain electrolytic capacitor in your C20. 
A qualified technician is available to do this mod for you, if desired. (see bottom of this page)
Our MC20 stepped attenuator has slightly different forms built from time to time.
All perform identically:
Part Number: MC20
Price: $282   (4 wafers - 3.1" from front mounting surface to rear tip)
Note: (You will need to install a power ON/Off switch someplace on your unit.
The high quality Goldpoint Mac C20 volume control no longer has an ON/Off switch attached to it.)
Goldpoint / Mac C20 replacement volume control installed. 
(current model uses SMD resistors - the previous Vishay/Dale version is shown below) 
Note: One large can type capacitor needs to be replaced or relocated.

C20 (before)

C20 (after)
Installing the Goldpoint 4-wafer replacement volume control into a Macintosh C-20 requires some experience
with modifying electronics gear. Here is an article by an enthusiast describing, in sequence, what he did: 
Goldpoint attenuator replacement for a McIntosh C20 preamplifier.

The first step in this ‘endeavor’ is to have on hand the schematic for the Mac C20. 
One source is Sams Photofact #475 folder four.  I believe the McIntosh company will also sell you a schematic for the C20.  Another source is

The next step is to determine the C20 model that you are working on.  The early model has a brass bar across the front panel ands the volume control does not have a cover over it.  I replaced the attenuator on an early model.  See if the unit does work.  Now unplug the C20 from the power source. 

Remove the knobs, front panel, and the plastic indicators on the top row of switches and pots.  Remove the bracket holding the two lamps that surround the  volume control shaft.

Now, the hard part.  Remove the wires from the volume control.  Mark where the wires go.  I found that new coax has to be installed  from the balance pot and the mode switch.  Note the location of ONE of the ground wires.  It SUPPLIES the ground to the control and also two resistors under the chassis. This ground wire comes from the front circuit board.  Cut the power leads going to the power switch on the old control.  Now remove the old control.

Since the Gold Point attenuator is longer than the original control, the electrolytic capacitor (C1 in the Sams) behind the control will have to be relocated.  I added an insulated solder terminal and a ground terminal on the inner side of the chassis, right under the old location of C1.   I had to drill a couple of holes in the side. I used two 40 mfd @ 450 vdc caps and rewired them according to the schematic.  I covered the hole with an aluminum plate mounted from the bottom of the chassis.

Since I was under the chassis, I replaced the filament rectifiers and its 2000 mfd capacitor.  I used a dual positive center rectifier assembly equivalent to NTE  6086.  Use the hole the old rectifier terminal strip to mount the rectifier assembly.  A couple more terminals where the old 2000 mfd cap was located, and you are operational. 

You could used the original grommets in the chassis, but I found the original ones very hard.  I replaced all of them in the attenuator area.

The mounting hole for the attenuator will have to be enlarged.   The Gold Point attenuator will be mounted using both nuts that are furnished.  A coupler is required for the Gold Point – C20 modification.   The coupler fits between the  chassis mount and the lamp bracket.  The couple is drilled for 1/4 inch shafts and the Gold Point shaft is metric.  A single layer of black plastic electrical tape will take up the slack.  Make sure the solder points on the Gold Point are facing up.   A shaft extension with a flat for the knob will have to be manufactured.  I imagine you could cut the shaft off from the [old] control.
(Goldpoint offers a shaft coupler which you can use here. See: bottom of page:

I also made a bracket to hold the rear of the switch.  I used the mounting screws for the power switch to attach the bracket to the switch and one of the holes that held the original FP type capacitor.

Now, to wire the attenuator.  The first thing is to twist some #22 stranded wire and run it form the AC receptacle to the power switch on the Gold Point. 

Run a #20 solid wire through the four grounds on the printed circuit boars of the switch and solder – CAREFULLY!

Do the coax first.  The coax is grounded at the switch and NOT at the balance control.  I always like to add a short piece of shrink tubing to the ends of the coax.  You will need to cover the ground shields at the switch with shrink tubing.  Note that the rear balance pot center tap goes to the front 100K printed circuit plate ’in’ terminal.  The ‘out’ terminal of the front plate (A) goes to the mode switch ‘single’ terminal.  But you know that since you marked the wires and cables.  The (B) output goes to the terminal with the wire jumper.

The final wiring is from the AURAL COMPENSATION pot (center tap) to the ‘in’ terminal of the C plate and ‘D’ plate.  At the same time you have these wires to replace, replace the ground wire from the from PC board to the ground buss on the switch.

Run the ‘out’ wires from the one meg plates to the correct capacitor inputs under the chassis.  Note that there is a ground wire from the junction of two 47K resistors that has to be run to the ground buss on the attenuator.

You are about done.  After connecting inputs and outputs, power on the preamplifier.  You will note, assuming you made no errors, there is a click when the attenuator is rotated.  This is the make break of the switch contacts.  I do not know if there is a fix.

The last ‘suggestion’ is to make a cover plate over the switch to help keep little fingers from the power switch and deflect the spillage of beverages into the Gold Point attenuator.

written by:   Robert Walters   (503) 284-8693   email:
4105 N.E. Alberta Court, Portland, OR 97211

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