Integrated Stereo Amplifier

  • 80 watts per channel – ​power to drive the most demanding speakers ​
  • ESS ES9018K2M SABRE32 DAC – ​reference level digital/analogue conversion​
  • Class AB Amplification – ​for balanced & efficient performance ​
  • Toroidal Transformer – ​for incredible sound-staging ​
  • Digital inputs – ​TOSLINK, Coaxial & USB Audio Input ​
  • Balanced XLR inputs – ​for premium connection (to CXN100 etc.)  ​
  • Bluetooth aptX HD input – ​connect wirelessly to devices, incl. Alva TT V2​
  • Roon Tested – ​connect a PC or Mac over USB
  • Rewarding Power​

    CXA81 Mk II builds on the success of its multi award-winning predecessors. We haven’t looked back since making our first integrated amplifier in 1968, always looking for new ways to improve your listening experience – while recognising that great sound never goes out of fashion. ​

    CXA81 Mk II is effortless, poised and sophisticated – only more so. 80 watts per channel give it complete authority over your music, to reveal every emotion and nuance contained within it. 

    CXA81 Mk II

    Raising the Standard

    How do we improve on CXA81, an amplifier regarded by many as the standard-bearer at its price point?

    Focusing on the all-important signal path, we re-engineered it with premium components end to end, plus an upgraded DAC and a whole load of listening and tuning; all part of a relentless drive to deliver new clarity and depth.

    The outcome? Audio performance that goes way beyond expectations.

    • Sound Advice Logo

      "This may at first appear little more than a marginal upgrade on the model it replaces, but the combination of an improved digital section and revisions and re-tuning in the analogue department has given it a compelling sound"

    CXA81 Mk II

    Your World’s a Stage

    What hits you first when you hear familiar music through CXA81 Mk II, is just how detailed everything sounds. You’ll pick up instruments, subtle shifts in tone, and harmonies you’ve previously missed. Close your eyes, and you’ll be able to place every musician in the soundstage. 

    Once you’ve heard CXA81 Mk II, there’s no turning back.

    Man setting up the volume on the CXA81 Mk II

    Effortlessly Musical​

    At the centre of CXA81 Mk II lies a custom-designed Class AB power amplifier stage with highly optimised components. It takes the musicality of Class A and blends it with the efficiency of Class B. The amp’s short signal path is super-efficient, leaving little opportunity for colouration.

    The result is a detailed sound that connects you to the emotional power of your music.

    CXA81 Mk II next to a mixing desk


    Thanks to a chunky toroidal transformer, CXA81 Mk II delivers a generous 80 watts of power per channel. Dual taps into the left and right of the amplification board mean that, in effect, each channel has its own power supply – resulting in a vivid soundstage. 

    Dynamic shifts in music – like loud then quiet passages – are handled with ease.

    Smartphone with StreamMagic app streaming music into a CX Stack

    Digital Love

    Designed to bring your digital music to life, CXA81 Mk II features the upgraded ESS ES9018K2M DAC (digital analogue converter) in its dedicated circuitry. This means that digital audio files, up to a heady 24-bit/384kHz or DSD256, are unpacked – with every subtle detail delivered in full. 

    CXA81 Mk II combines unparalleled accuracy with vivid musicality, doing so beautifully.

    CXA81 Mk II's Back panel

    Get Connected​

    ​CXA81 Mk II has connectivity covered. As well as digital optical, coaxial and USB Audio (from computers), it features stereo RCA inputs, balanced XLR sockets plus wireless hi-res connectivity via Bluetooth aptX HD – perfect for our Alva turntables. 

    You can even connect a second set of speakers, to hear your music in another room. 

    Volume Knob on CXA81 Mk II

    Total Control​

    ​Designed to work with carefully matched kit of a comparable quality, CXA81 Mk II isn’t festooned with switches and dials – to keep the signal path clear. Its minimal aluminium fascia has a power button, input selectors and a beautifully smooth volume control. 

    It’s also supplied with a CX Series remote control, which you can use with other products in the series. ​

    CX Range Stack

    Designed for Life​

    ​With elegant, minimalistic lines, crafted from aluminium and steel, CXA81 Mk II will endure physically and aesthetically. There should be no reason to change an amplifier for many years, if at all. 

    Making products that last is just one of the ways that we can minimise our impact on the planet and maximise your listening pleasure.

  • Customer Reviews

  • The details

    POWER OUTPUT 80W RMS into 8 Ohms, 120W RMS into 4 Ohms
    DAC ESS Sabre ES9018K2M
    FREQUENCY RESPONSE <5Hz– 60kHz +/-1dB
    ANALOGUE AUDIO INPUTS 1x balanced XLR, 4 x RCA
    COMPATIBILITY TOSLINK optical: 16/24bit 32-96kHz PCM only, S/PDIF coaxial: 16/24bit 32-192kHz PCM only, USB: audio profile 1.0/2.0 (default 2.0), up to 24-bit 384kHz PCM, up to DSD256 or DoP256, Bluetooth: 4.2 A2DP/AVRCP supporting up to aptX HD (24bit 48kHz)
    DIMENSIONS (H X W X D) 115 x 430 x 341mm (4.5 x 16.9 x 13.4”)
    WEIGHT 8.7kg (19.1lbs)
    BOX CONTENTS CXA81 Integrated Amplifier, Power Cable, 3 x AAA Batteries, Remote Control, Control Bus Cable, Bluetooth antenna, Quick Start Guide, Safety Guide