They could of course have built all of this into a single, large cabinet. But in a preamplifier, the voltages are low and the electronics sensitive. So therefore, there may be a benefit from splitting it into two cabinets.
Doing so will of course be more expensive, but in this – huge – price range these matters are of lesser importance.
Because here, the sound is the most important thing, and when you move the power supply and power control to a separate cabinet, you reduce the risk of interference and lower the noise floor in the preamplifier.
In the McIntosh C12000, the preamplifier module is divided into two channels (dual mono) in the cabinet to which all the audio sources are connected. Here we find a total of 12 inputs, six of them balanced and two are for turntables with either MM or MC cartridge.
The preamplifier is a purely analog design, and so, no McIntosh DAC module is include.
The two turntable inputs use, like the line stage, vacuum valves in the amplifier stage, four 12AX7A, in a balanced configuration, and here you can adjust the capacitance and load (Ohm) to any pickup you may own.
The two-part preamplifier is ready for delivery in North America, during December, where it is stated at 16,000 USD, or 8000 USD per module.