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Antelope Orion 32 Mod

Profile picture for user audiokid

https://blacklionaudio.com/product/antelope-orion-32-mod/

What do you guys make of this. I'm wondering how companies like Antelope make a , so called "world class" converter, then a few months later Black Lion Audio upgrades it.
They also offer the improved clock, which the 10M made no difference to my ears, so how could this clock improve it?

Create a winning team by adding the Micro Clock to your modification, and save money!

I'm not disputing any of this, just saying and inviting conversation.

Antelope Orion 32 Mod
$695.00

Antelope Audio’s Orion 32 is no small feat. It’s capable of up to 32 channels of simultaneous I/O at 192kHz via USB in a 1U chassis, making it a great option for anyone needing high A/D/A channel counts. See below for details on how we can take your interface to the next level!

*A 50% down payment will be collected during checkout. The remainder 50% will be due when the modification is complete. You will receive a confirmation email with your scheduled mod date after we receive your down payment. The interface is not included in the mod price. Please click on the “Disclaimer & Warranty” tab below for more information on how to schedule a mod.

Product Description
We are offering the following modification for the Orion 32:

Premium Mod

  • New, high performance op-amps on EVERY line output (no pin-compatible op-amp upgrade available for the line inputs)
  • New, high-grade signal path capacitors on EVERY analog input and output (line inputs and line outputs)
  • Improving the performance of the analog stage circuits makes a drastic difference for tracking, mixing, and mastering (expect amazing micro-dynamics and space)!
  • Proprietary decoupling on all A/D and D/A converters
  • Our approach to converter decoupling reduces noise generated during the conversion process, leaving you with crisp, clear audio!
class="xf-ul"> Unlock the full sonic potential of your Orion 32 with our Premium Mod! Select the quantity by clicking the “+” and “-“ buttons above, then click “Add to cart.”

Comments

Profile picture for user audiokid

audiokid Sun, 02/21/2016 - 10:48

I guess what I'm wondering, if all it takes is an extra $650 to improve the Orion 32, why wouldn't they do that to their product in the first place?
How many extra pennies would that actually translate to, had it been done during the original design.

Same goes for the clock.
The biggest improvement I get with most converters happens on the interfacing. Once we are in the top level of analog counterparts, I'm looking at how the unit is interfacing more than tiny sonic improvements (good to have both).

So, at this point... after the stock Orion was in my rack, my money went towards the better interface. Stability and ability to stay locked during large track counts exceeds the small gain in sonic improvement.

Profile picture for user Boswell

Boswell Sun, 02/21/2016 - 14:49

A rather cynical view, derived from my personal experience with the product design of a couple of other companies, is that the BL mod might restore the product to something similar to what the designer intended before the production manufacturing department got hold of it.

I can't comment on the clock in this case.

Profile picture for user audiokid

audiokid Sun, 02/21/2016 - 18:09

Boswell, post: 436598, member: 29034 wrote: A rather cynical view, derived from my personal experience with the product design of a couple of other companies, is that the BL mod might restore the product to something similar to what the designer intended before the production manufacturing department got hold of it.

@Boswell from just a guess then, what would "production manufacturing department"be saving per unit on the sacrifice?

Profile picture for user Boswell

Boswell Mon, 02/22/2016 - 07:21

audiokid, post: 436600, member: 1 wrote: ... from just a guess then, what would "production manufacturing department"be saving per unit on the sacrifice?

Sorry, Chris, I don't have any component details of the original design nor of the BL mod, so I can't comment on that.

What I can do is can refer to one of the designs I was involved in (n.b. not for Antelope) where Manufacturing boasted to me that they cut the production cost of my design by almost half by sending it to the Far East. The production units certainly had the same numbers painted on the chips, but they didn't sound the same.

Another company surprised me by getting 50 instead of the usual half-dozen pre-production prototypes assembled in their works factory, all built using exactly the parts I had specified. All became clear when I was told these were the units sent out to reviewers while the production units were kitted and built elsewhere.

Just to be clear, I have no evidence that Antelope manufactures other than in their own factories.

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Boswell Fri, 02/26/2016 - 08:17

Adam J. Brass, post: 436741, member: 49746 wrote: I call these guys "Black Listed Audio"...$695 to modify 32 channels of converters smells fishy, like a scam....

You have come to the wrong site if your intention is to post unsubstantiated derogatory comments. There are other audio sites where posts contain little else, and you may feel more at home there.

Black Lion is a commercial company carrying out selected modifications to other manufacturers' products. They do not have to prove that their processes are value for money, as that is up to customers and reviewers to judge. Unless you can provide evidence that their modifications make no difference to the sound of the product, you are doing Black Lion a disservice by making comments of the type in your post.

Profile picture for user Sean G

Sean G Fri, 02/26/2016 - 09:50

Adam J. Brass, post: 436741, member: 49746 wrote: I call these guys "Black Listed Audio"...$695 to modify 32 channels of converters smells fishy, like a scam....

Hmmm, coming from someone whose first post dropped the names of three products they sell on their link....something smells fishy, like a shill...

Profile picture for user Adam J. Brass

Adam J. Brass Fri, 02/26/2016 - 11:40

Sean G, post: 436747, member: 49362 wrote: Hmmm, coming from someone whose first post dropped the names of three products they sell on their link....something smells fishy, like a shill...

Well, I find it hard to believe that the amount of parts + labor to modify and enhance 32 channels of modern converter boards, would only cost $695. For the time of a Qualified experienced Master Technician. This is obviously not the work of a Master Technician.

Profile picture for user Kurt Foster

Kurt Foster Fri, 02/26/2016 - 13:36

studios that have deep pockets buy this stuff because it gives them a marketing edge. currently, the hot ticket is Burl. tomorrow? who knows? but it will be something.

if a studio shows a profit, they need to buy sh*t so they can get write off's on taxes. in the old days they bought better consoles or new tape machines. now they upgrade/ purchase computers or converters.

with all the challenges and compromises small studios have to make, i have wonder if high end converters really make any difference. would Orion conversion help Donny get even more awards? he's done fine with what he has, it seems.

good front end and a proper environment to record and mix in, is much more important considering improvements in the more modest interfaces available. appropriate for the big rooms? yes. worth it to home recordist? perhaps not.