Cyrus Audio unveils XR series

British hi-fi manufacturer, Cyrus Audio has introduced six new products to make up the XR series.

Designed for audiophiles, at launch, the series will comprise of two integrated amplifiers with DACs (the i7-XR and i9-XR), a preamp (the Pre-XR), two CD players (the CDt-XR transport and the integrated CDi-XR), and an external power supply (the PSU-XR). 

Almost four decades of experience has led to the XR series which demonstrates a fundamental step change in design approach which has been made possible due to an accumulated understanding of DAC technologies and power supply designs, combined with Cyrus’s recently updates manufacturing processes and the availability of higher-grade components. 

A flagship in design, the XR series delivers noteworthy sound quality benefits and substantially increased dynamic range. 

Designed from the ground up, Cyrus’s engineers selected components based on efficiency and optimal performance, without consideration of the cost, to create an exceptionally low noise platform, through power supply design, DAC optimisation, component choice, circuit topology, as well as some more fundamental design approaches. 

A driving principle behind the design of the XR series was noise reduction. Engineers put in tremendous effort to protect and isolate the signal path from potential sources of noise. 

The design of the power supply was another significant area of focus to deliver high quality and reliable power to the entire circuitry, ensuring its optimal performance. The DAC was also important to reconstruct analogue signals with accuracy and precision. 

Featuring a new aesthetic, all products in the new XR series are wrapped in a new Phantom Black paint finish, exclusive to the XR series. Cyrus has also introduced a new user interface with the XR series, incorporating capacitive touch buttons with audible feedback. The new UI also features a high-resolution LCD screen and a solid metal rotary encoder. 

The new i7-XR and i9-XR amplifiers generate improved efficiency to give a greater burst power capacity, enhancing the amplifier’s ability to accurately track the music signal and leading to much lower levels of distortion. 

A key new feature in the XR series amps is user-selectable DAC filters, which can be easily changed on the front of the product or via the remote. 

The i7-XR produces 2 x 52 watts per channel and has a dynamic range of 104 dB, while the i9-XR produces 2 x 91 watts per channel with a dynamic range of 104 dB. 

Both fully integrated, the two amps have four analogue and five digital inputs (two optical, two Coax, one USB), a new software update port, and pre and fixed level outputs, as well as dual speaker outputs on the back panel. To cater to the growing vinyl market, both amps have a built-in moving magnet phono stage.

The new Pre-XR uses a new power supply design with high-valve reservoir capacitors making it extremely stiff and robust. The transformer is also a new custom design. The net result of this is a dynamic range performance of 110 dB. 

Presenting a vast improvement over Cyrus’s existing high-end preamp, the DAC CP signature, the Pre-XR offers increased dynamic range and a broader bandwidth capable of handling files up to 32-bit/768k as well as DSD files. It also features a built-in phono stage.

CD players
Improving on the multi-award-winning design of Cyrus’s classic CDi, the new XR series CD player, the CDt-XR and the CDi-CR both feature new power supply design and bespoke transformers designed specifically for the new CD players, making their SE CD engine even quieter. 

Both using twin microprocessors, one chip handles the user interface and housekeeping while the other is dedicated to running the SE engine. This prevents crucial timing information from being interrupted by the processor being asked to do other things.

A new physical loader is included to give a better performance, alongside a re-clocking circuit to reduce jitter. 

In terms of board layout, flow and return principles have been applied to the DAC section and the signal path throughout the entire player. Other improvements include new filter stages and a 2nd generation QXR DAC specifically optimised to 16bit 44.1kHz. 

Both new CD players can be upgraded with the addition of the PSU-XR. 

Power supply 
A flagship design, the PSU-XR takes outboard power supply to another level. The intelligent power supply has its own on-board microprocessor and is very flexible, adding substantial sound quality benefits to any hi-fi system.

The microprocessor communicates with the host product to gather its exact power requirements. The PSU-XR can supply up to three separate circuits on each host product with superior clean power at any of 256 digitally controlled voltage levels to ensure precise matching. This makes it incredibly flexible and futureproof. 

As is with all the XR series products, relay switched ‘stiff’ power supplies ensure exceptional voltage stability even under extreme loads. 

The power supply itself in the PSU-XR is as isolated as possible in order to prevent the power circuits from inadvertently infecting the musical signal. 

The PSU-XR can deliver 60% more power than the PSX-R2 and, due to its clever design, it is 50% more efficient. 

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