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In depth : A Film about the Cyrus ONE Cast (Part II)

The Cyrus ONE Cast is hot off the shelves at the moment as the newest iteration of the Cyrus ONE line up of models, being launched about a month ago. An integrated Class D Amp with DAC and internal Chromecasting built in.

You can use voice control speakers like the Amazon Echo Dot or Google Nest Mini / Home Mini to take the Cyrus ONE Cast out of stand-by and start playing streamed music. But don’t divulge too much information as you never know if these sentient speakers are listening! A global artificial intelligence takeover perhaps?

An unofficial appraisal of the ONE Cast can be watched in my film. Please subscribe if you like what I’m doing (Lots of credible and honest reviews will be coming your way….) Alternatively read the snapshot points below;

TEN Quick Points about the Cyrus ONE Cast

ONE

The Cyrus ONE Cast is the third model in the range and based on the original ONE of the 1980’s. It uses a mock up of the iconic Cyrus Chassis which has been going, literally for donkeys years. Well since the 90’s actually. An understated retro design that has a unique appeal.

TWO

The Cyrus Class D Amp in this model is in its latest 4th generation guise. Cyrus learnt a lot from designing the terrific Stereo 200 power amp and fed back some of the design in the ONE. It is easily the biggest strength of this amplifier by far.

THREE

Chrome-casting is a Google invention and the ubiquitous Chromecast Audio died earlier this year, but it doesn’t mean there are not many about still. I bought a few recently for presents and eBay is your friend!

FOUR

The Quality of the ONE Cast is good on the whole but there are a few niggles in some areas with the round dials which could be better secured. The aerials are wobbly, I couldn’t see that you could use 4mm banana plugs into the binding posts (the plastic covers don’t appear to detach). On the whole, quality is good. I’d have preferred a better remote to the ‘Amazon Fire’ TV type for such a priced product.

FIVE

Sound quality using the internal Chromecast Audio with some very good Ophidian Minimo Speakers I used and some more expensive £3300 PMC twenty5 23’s is pretty much an equal to the Chromecast Audio ‘Puck’.

SIX

Sound quality is authoritative with great drive and bass responsiveness and this amp makes a case for less is more for your buck, very stand-outish. It’s not a sharp sound, like Class D can be, and it would be hard to have a bad word to say about the audio qualities of this integrated amplifier! It had me wondering about my decision making for buying a Cyrus DAC XP Signature pre amp, with Cyrus Mono X200 Signature power amp. Undoubtedly better than the ONE Cast, but undoubtedly nowhere near the value of the ONE Cast!

SEVEN

During shows a Cyrus party piece has been to use the ONE amp with relatively demanding and less than diminutive full range speakers. It more than holds its own!

EIGHT

In layman’s terms, Class D amplification involves creating pulses relative to the original musical signal rather than being on all the time. This tends to create high frequency noise which must be put through a filter. Whatever Cyrus have done with the ONE in this sense, is very good, because this amp does not suffer from the high frequency noise akin to some Class D designs. In fact it is very balanced!

I found it a touch more ’roundedly affronting’ than the hypex class D modules of a Nord NC500 DM Mk 2 Power Amp. So *quite possibly* this is the amp to best a NAD M10 which similarly utilises hypex modules.

NINE

The Cyrus ONE makes a very BIG case for investing in audio rather than watching celebrity love island or ‘Who wants to be a millionaire’ on a £1300/$1500 4K TV!

My pick is the Cyrus ONE HD which is now available for £800, utilising the same DAC and Class D amp as the Cyrus ONE Cast. £500 for Chromecasting functionality is somewhat expensive.

Using voice control with Cyrus ONE Cast - 13th Note HiFi Reviews
TEN

Using a different DAC, the might and quality of the amplification is really shown off. I used a Chord Qutest to great effect. But equally if buying the ONE HD, you could additionally consider buying a £500 DAC like the Musical Fidelity MX-DAC for added sound quality gains and for equal price to the ONE Cast. I didn’t A to B the Cyrus DAC in the ONE Cast against the MF…but judging by my review I’d be surprised if the ONE Cast’s DAC trumps it on all out capability. That said the ONE Cast’s DAC works well as a packaged product.

SUMMARY

On the whole if your thing is a powerful, neutral, feature specced amplifier, with good design, it would be hard to do better. As stated, my pick is the ONE HD with a Google Chromecast audio and if you want to improve the DAC and don’t mind a two box solution – try it!

Specifications

  • Google Assistant enabled, Amazon™ Alexa enabled and Apple® AirPlay 2 enabled
  • Asynchronous USB input (up to 32bit 192khz and DSD to DSD128)
  • Optical Toslink / Coaxial RCA digital inputs
  • Bluetooth™
  • Built in Moving Magnet Phono stage for turntables
  • Single Analogue input and for home cinema bypass
  • 4th Gen Class D Amplifier – outputs 2 x 100W (into 6 Ω at 0.1% THD+N)
  • SID – Speaker Impedance Detection (automatically calibrates amplifier to your speakers)
  • Pre Outs for connection to additional power amps
  • Class AB headphone Amp
  • Software installs via Wi-Fi (new feature from previous models)
  • (H X W X D) – 85 x 220 x 390mm
  • Weight – 5.6kg

Price

£1300 / c.$1700 / c.€1550

Manufacturer Details

Cyrus Audio Ltd, Ermine Business Park, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, PE29 6XY, England.
Tel : +44 (0)1480 410 900
Website : https://www.cyrusaudio.com

Test Systems

ONE : Ophidian Minimo Speakers, Talk 3 speaker cable, Chromecast Audio
TWO : PMC twenty5 23 speakers with and without Chord Qutest DAC, with and without Chromecast Audio, Talk 3 speaker cable.

4 Comments

Leave a Reply
  1. G’day from Melbourne, Australia Simon.
    Very informative review thank you very much I watched it prior to my buying my Cyrus One Cast.
    I was about to get the Cyrus One HD however the Cast were offered to me for the same price.

    I note your advise of putting a MF MX-DAC – will that make my One Cast sound better?
    my speakers are Focal Chora 806, speaker cables are Kimber Kable 12TC, currently using Airplay and Tidal.

    will the improvements using MF MX-DAC be noticeable on that ?

    pardon me, how would I connect the MF MX DAC into the Cyrus One Cast?

    thank you so much!

    Warly

    • Hi Warly, thanks very much. I think it will but personally if it was me I’d go for something like the RME DAC I reviewed which is much better. Upgrade when it’s a decent big upgrade in other words, for max return and value for money. I used the Cyrus with a Chord Qutest DAC and that was very good too. Best wishes Simon.

      • Thank you so much Simon- the RME and the Qutest are similar price points here, I will definitely consider that.

        Kind Regards, Warly

      • Hi Simon
        If I use the Chord Qutest DAC- I would not be able to use the casting capability of the One Cast- is that what will happen?

        Thanks
        Warly

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Written by Simon Price

I'm an audio lover who likes sharing experiences of faithfully reproduced audio in a CREDIBLE, BALANCED and ENGAGING way. I’m interested in products; their looks, functionality and features, and most importantly how they sound! My reviews keep technicalities easy, as I believe great audio is non exclusive and to be enjoyed by all! It's all about the music!

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