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Orion antelope 32 Digital Converters
Old 28th September 2015
  #1
Gear Addict
Orion antelope 32

Hi just had a big analogue upgrade (Dda dmr12 56 input, mx80) and need a new converter, any users of the Orion antelope 32. Any good? In comparison to the new motu 24i/o
I've a bunch motu 896 and there pretty good

My need is minimum 24 Channel I/O
Budget up to £2000. But happy to spend a grand if the difference in quality is negligible.

Cheers
Ant.
Old 28th September 2015
  #2
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Motoxxx's Avatar
 

Antelope Orion will blow away any piece of MOTU gear. I used to own a bunch of the MOTU 2408, 24i/o etc. I have had the Orion for over a year and you will be blown away by what it can do with just a simple USB. Best bang for the buck for that much I/O and AD/DA there is.
Old 28th September 2015
  #3
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Cookie's Avatar
Orion user here. Really impressed. Great sounding unit. I'm actually selling mine b/c it's more I/O than I need right now though.

I can't compare to the MOTU, but I replaced an apogee Rosetta 800 with it and I personally think it sounds better that the Rosetta. I think the top end is more open and it's overall more clean.

All that in 1 rack space is insane.
Old 28th September 2015
  #4
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voodoo4u's Avatar
Yep! Really good unit. Solid, reliable and sounds great. Best deal on the market at this point that I'm aware of.
Old 28th September 2015
  #5
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12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Motoxxx View Post
Best bang for the buck for that much I/O and AD/DA there is.
over the new Ferrofish A-32?
FERROFISH A32 - 32 in/32 out AD/DA MADI & ADAT Converter
Old 28th September 2015
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
Ok, any users, comparison etc.
Old 28th September 2015
  #7
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12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by antony View Post
Ok, any users, comparison etc.
I believe it's just about to hit the streets.

Just various sneak peeks from trade shows so far, like this one:
NAB 2015: Ferrofish A32—32-Channel AD/DA | explora

Feature wise it's right there with the Orion, and slightly less expensive. I'm in the market for 16+ channels of DA, and these two seem like the best bang for the buck. One noticeable difference is that it's strictly a converter, and doesn't have interface functions...though if I get the Orion over this, I'd use it strictly as a converter with an RME pcie card.
Old 28th September 2015
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
Don't know as I have never heard of this company until now and I have no experience with them.

If anyone needs more reassurance about the Orion, go read the reviews on Sweetwaters website.
Old 28th September 2015
  #9
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12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Motoxxx View Post
Don't know as I have never heard of this company until now and I have no experience with them.

If anyone needs more reassurance about the Orion, go read the reviews on Sweetwaters website.
They used to be Creamware, you know the HW/SW/DSP company of certain renown...

Yeah, the Orion gets positive review all in all, without question...though who's to say that this new Ferrofish A-32 is any of a lesser unit, and who knows, maybe it kicks the sh*t out of the Orion.

All I know is, it's just about to come out, and it would behoove one to consider this for a massive I/O option at a reasonable price, along with the Orion.
Old 28th September 2015
  #10
Gear Nut
I'd go for the Orion, as it's rock solid 32i/o on usb (i'm usin one)

The Ferrofish requires an extra card with madi or adat
Old 28th September 2015
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Todeswalzer View Post
I'd go for the Orion, as it's rock solid 32i/o on usb (i'm usin one)

The Ferrofish requires an extra card with madi or adat
What if the Ferrofish is superior sonically?

From what I can gather, a lot of people are using the Orion strictly as a converter...and while it's good that it's working for you, the USB interface aspect of it seems to the feature that is the cause of most concern from reading many reviews of it.
Old 29th September 2015
  #12
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
What if the Ferrofish is superior sonically?

From what I can gather, a lot of people are using the Orion strictly as a converter...and while it's good that it's working for you, the USB interface aspect of it seems to the feature that is the cause of most concern from reading many reviews of it.
If that is the concern then you can run it via MADI.

That is what I did, but only because I already had a MADI converter before the Orion, and when I move to the Burl MS, in a few years I can still use the MADI connection.

The USB is very solid. I have used it a number of times, it is low latency (there is a trick to get that, there is a youtube antelope video that explains how). If you don't have any issues with USB and have a number of ports and your computer is close to where your Orion will be (you do not want to run the Orion into a hub), then it should be no issue.

Jim
Old 29th September 2015
  #13
Don't discount the SPL Madison. Still lovin mine right alongside my Mytek. Get a deal through JJR Shop and the price is not that far off
Old 29th September 2015
  #14
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12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
If that is the concern then you can run it via MADI.

That is what I did, but only because I already had a MADI converter before the Orion, and when I move to the Burl MS, in a few years I can still use the MADI connection.

The USB is very solid. I have used it a number of times, it is low latency (there is a trick to get that, there is a youtube antelope video that explains how). If you don't have any issues with USB and have a number of ports and your computer is close to where your Orion will be (you do not want to run the Orion into a hub), then it should be no issue.

Jim
Frankly, all I'm concerned with is which unit sounds better.
Old 29th September 2015
  #15
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jimbridgman's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
Frankly, all I'm concerned with is which unit sounds better.
All I can tell you is that the Orion sounds amazing. It has a depth and width to it that others do not. What you put in you get out.

Never heard a ferrofish, so I don't have a true comparison between the two.

Jim
Old 29th September 2015
  #16
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12tone's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimbridgman View Post
All I can tell you is that the Orion sounds amazing. It has a depth and width to it that others do not. What you put in you get out.

Never heard a ferrofish, so I don't have a true comparison between the two.

Jim
I have no doubts the Orion sounds great, there are more than enough plaudits for it.

The Ferrofish is just hitting the streets within a matter of weeks. It literally is the only thing that compares feature-wise to the Orion in a single box, at a 1u footprint at that: 32 channel AD/DA, Madi (both optical and coax), 8 total adat toslinks, sharc chip for DSP, 4 separate TFT screens for visual dislay/parameter adjustment, etc...I mean it's loaded just like the Orion is and then some, at a price point just above $2k...what's not to like?

In the least I'd like to see several A/B comparisons between the two, sound samples, or whatnot...
Old 29th September 2015
  #17
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Drumsound's Avatar
The Orion is a really great piece of kit that just sits there and does what you ask it to do. I was working on someing with a MOTU piece owened by a friend when my Orion came in. The first time we worked on the project with Orion, I immediately noticed the superior sound.
Old 29th September 2015
  #18
Gear Addict
The new motu 16a and 24's are beyond the old not saying the orian is not as good but there no comparison in the old motu converters and the new ones if it were me I'd rent both or find someone to let you demo jmo ymv
Old 29th September 2015
  #19
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Motoxxx's Avatar
 

I hope the Ferrofish is a great box. However since the company is newly branded (from what I have read here) that for me breeds a hint of uncertainty about the company and the product. So, I will stick with my Orion.

As far as the MOTU stuff goes, I picked up a new interface last year for my wifes set up here at the house and ran it through its paces. I was really disappointed in the sound quality and the the build quality seemed really cheap to me. The older pieces I used to own seemed much more robust.

Now I will say that I really do wish Antelope would have made the rack ears a 4 holed affair as is standard with pretty much all audio gear. The 2 rack hole design is stylish for sure but doesn't make me have much confidence if I was to take this thing out to do mobile recordings with it.
Old 29th September 2015
  #20
Here for the gear
 

Been using the Orion since january. Good unit. Hard to beat price to functionality ratio, and sounds very good. Have compared the sound directly to RME, Universal Audio Apollo and Direct Out Andiamo 2 (very similar to the orion and ferrofish, minus the usb) in my own studio, and it compares favorably. It certainly won't get in the way of making some very good sounding records.

IMHO few interface solutions beats the RME drivers (and totalmix), and I first considered using the Orion as converters only into a RME madi card, but after a few sessions with the Orions own USB interface I felt it was solid enough both for tracking and mixing so I just kept it that way. Antelope could still improve on the software though. Compared to what RME offer in Totalmix I feel it is a bit limited. Not bad, I've just come to expect more after using more comprehensive software solutions.

I sometimes use the Orion together with the Apollo for more simultaneous IO and to me they they sound slightly different. Not better or worse, just different.

Only trouble I've had has been to get the Apollo to clock to it when using them together as an aggregate device in OSX, but hard to say which part of the chain that is responsible for the occational hickup I have experienced. YMMV.

I have to second motoxxx on wanting 4 rack holes. 8 DSUBs, power and adat cables puts considerable weight on the front panels two screws, unless your rack is completely filled and it can have some support from the unit directly below it. So far no big problem though.

All in all: Am satisfied, would recommend and buy again.
Old 29th September 2015
  #21
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I am running the Orion via a SSL MADI card. Really solid and fast. Sounds great. Had Apogee Rosetta 800 and some MOTU. More detail and space than the Rosetta and the MOTU stuff sounded cloudy. Very noticeable difference in detail.
Old 30th September 2015
  #22
Gear Addict
Cheers for the advice guys, looking like Orion.
Old 30th September 2015
  #23
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natpub's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by karlztrm View Post
...Antelope could still improve on the software though. Compared to what RME offer in Totalmix I feel it is a bit limited...

this
Old 30th September 2015
  #24
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Squawk's Avatar
So many great options these days. Probably can't go wrong with any of them. Just be sure that the software does what you need if getting an interface/converter. Some may be better suited for direct monitoring, setting up cue mixes, etc. as already noted. RME and Motu have pretty advanced software for this. Lynx is also good. Not sure about the others.
Old 30th September 2015
  #25
Orion32 user here.

AWESOME sound! Better than anything else I've had, including RME Fireface 800's, Aurora Lynx 16, MOTU 896HD II, 24io, etc.

Very limited user interface. The unit would need more DSP; you can make only 2 channels of direct monitoring (I had to buy an RME MADIFace to do my needed 24).

Mine used to be rock solid for 1½ year, but had some strange intermittent problems lately. Support through their web site was quick and nice.
Old 30th September 2015
  #26
Gear Maniac
 

Hi all:
The one thing about the Orion 32 is besides the quality of the conversion, it is the driver that is worthy.
I have used the Orion via USB on a PC and I can play soft synth on very low latency within a project, meaning with other tracks open.
Like 128 which on the Orion, I feel like I am playing live.
Can you do that with 60 tracks opened. and playing Trilian right along? Can you?

Cheers

dan le
Old 30th September 2015
  #27
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Similarly as BillSimpkins, we're using Orion32 with SSL MADI card. Only at PC, where we have combined rig for Soundscape (lot of older projects) and other DAWs using ASIO.
Best of both worlds - good conversion and latency, DSP routing and mixing capabilities of SSL card.
But IME Orion32 is also perfectly usable via its built-in USB interface, so it can be used with any notebook or generally any MacOS or Windows computer, when it is needed.

I kinda like this dual personality, I believe its bit limited built-in DSP resources contributes to relatively affordable price (very good I/O count/price ratio IMO) and when one wants upgrade, it is easy to add RME, SSL, MOTU MADI interface to the setup.

Michal
Old 30th September 2015
  #28
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Soothing Sound's Avatar
Another Happy Orion 32 user.

Using the 32 channels via usb @ 96k. Amazing no problems, like others stated, just be sure to not use a usb hub, it gobbles a lot of usb bandwidth.
Old 30th September 2015
  #29
Add 5 years warranty and 24 chann of DSP and this is a DREAM interface! Higher price? I would pay, if it's reasonable...
Old 14th September 2017
  #30
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Recommended portable hard rack for Orion 32

I'm planning on using it for live recording purposes so I want to get a portable hard rack. Which ones do you recommend and where can I get them?
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