Cyrus 8XP review

It might not have the DAC of the 8XPd, but we love this integrated amplifier for its accomplished sonic delivery Tested at £1250.00

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

It might lack the 8 XPd’s DAC, but the 8 XP is missing nothing in the sonic stakes


  • +

    Exceptionally detailed, transparent and precise delivery

  • +

    lovely dynamics

  • +

    excellent upgradability


  • -

    Some rivals sound a little bigger and bassier

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert team reviews products in dedicated test rooms, to help you make the best choice for your budget. Find out more about how we test.

To say Cyrus is on something of a roll at the moment is an understatement in the extreme.

Last year the SE series of CD players demolished the competition; now the XP series of matching amps is well on its way to doing the same thing, with the 6 XP and 8 XPd both receiving emphatic five-star reviews in recent months.

The 8 XP, is simply the XPd without the built-in DAC. On paper that means it should sound as good as its £1500 sibling. Guess what? It does.

Right from the off the 8 XP is just sensational, with focus and precision that its rivals can't match.

See all our Cyrus amp reviews

Fed Simian Mobile Disco's 10,000 Horses Can't be Wrong, the Cyrus goes hell for leather, tracking every note with real accuracy.

There's plenty of tricky treble here, but played through the 8 XP it positively twinkles. Although a couple of amps here go a little deeper in the bass, the Cyrus trumps them with its tautness.

The Gladiator OST highlights the 8 XP's other qualities. During The Battle, with its frequent shifts in tempo and scale, the Cyrus reproduces the slow build ups with real subtlety, while also launching the sudden crescendos with the skill and accuracy of a sniper.

Incredibly transparent and detailed
Move on to the more delicate Elysium and the 8 XP proves to be a most transparent performer by some margin.

It highlights each of the instruments, separating them out and revealing all the texture in each note.

Any flaws? Well, the analytical nature of the reproduction won't flatter poorly recorded music or very bright speakers, but that's not exactly a fault.

It's also true that other amps have greater scale, but the Cyrus' many other qualities easily make up for that.

Besides, if you want the pace, detail and transparency of the 8 XP, but with extra authority, you can always take advantage of the Cyrus' upgrade potential and add a PSX-R power supply.

It might take the total cost up to £1750, but it'll take much more expensive systems to the cleaners.

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What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

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