Skip to main content

This is definitely on my wish list for next year. Thanks for pointing me to this Greener.
Its pricy ( 13,305.00) but looks like it has everything one would want in a high end converter. Take those Cubase or Sonar DAW systems to a new level.

Has anyone had any experience with this beauty? Is there anything else out there that comes close to the ADA-8XR?


The ADA-8XR is a multi-channel AD/DA converter that can be configured in numerous ways using plugin modules to suit a very wide variety of applications. It can be a 16 channel AD converter, a 16 Channel DA converter or an 8 channel AD/DA converter. It can be a multi-channel FireWire interface, or an AES/EBU / AES3 / SPDIF Digital to Analogue or Analogue to Digital converter. It can act as a high resolution Pro Tools Interface for recording or post-production. Similarly it can work with a wide range of other popular Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) including Logic, Cubase, Nuendo and others. In fact, there's not a lot it can't do when it comes to digital audio conversion.

The ADA-8XR is the top professionals' converter of choice in the most exacting applications in music and sound recording, mastering, broadcast and post-production. Offering the cleanest and most transparent conversion available, the ADA-8XR is ideal for producers, engineers and songwriters wanting to produce top-quality results when recording, tracking & overdubbing, mixing to stereo or surround, mastering and monitoring. The ADA-8XR is perfect for recording vocal, single instruments, drums or orchestra and is just as much at home providing multiple outputs for external analog summing. It is in use in the top studios around the world as well as being used in numerous film sound tracks.


Kev Wed, 12/17/2008 - 00:21

spotted the link in that other thread

looks very interesting
I like the idea of a 16AD and a 16DA
but the typical ADA-8 is also cool
you can lone to or from a friend when more I/O is required on the larger sessions

either way ... choice is good

how does the price compare to the a 96 or a 192

anonymous Wed, 12/17/2008 - 03:02

Do you have a nice desk?

I would use in conjunction with something like this. Can they be connected together? I'm sure something with the same kind of build quality exists that isn't made by a bunch of self aggrandising... I can't figure it out but I will by the time I can afford them. :P

I want a massive mixer like an oldschool Neve or SSL but I don't have a spare mansion to mortgage.

Add a patch bay superior to all others built beforehand, a handful of whatever outboard compressors, limiters and other effects you find nice. Use the box to set levels and edit.

Use every program you can get your hands on. If you're making electronica you need to get digging for samples and synths.

audiokid Wed, 12/17/2008 - 13:30

What about Lavry Engineering. Very interesting bio on Dan Lavry here: this

Here is the skinny on the AD122-96MKIII

Converts analog signals to a true 24-bit digital audio data stream. Consistently used for many of today's top recordings, the AD122-96MKIII features -127dB dynamic range (unweighted), providing optimum musical results.

• 96kHz, 88.2kHz, 48kHz and 44.1kHz conversion frequencies
• Unequaled detail and performance
• True -127dB noise floor
• 0.00005% Total Harmonic Distortion + Noise
• Conversion to 24 bits
• Built-in Acoustic Bit Correction re-dithering to 16-20 bit formats
• Switchable digital soft-knee limiter, +3 or +6dB gain
• Precision reference meter bridge
• Fully programmable digital test tones for system alignment
• AES and word clock external synchronization 40-51kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz
• DC removal
• Absolute Polarity Inversion
• Multi-converter synchronization

This is definitely in the running for my next AD converter.
I think we should actually do a Best AD Converters for 2008 topic at this point.

Cucco Wed, 12/17/2008 - 19:22

FWIW, the price of a converter does not necessarily equate to its quality. That being said, I have used the Prism and it is simply amazing. (I used an older ADA-8, but it was still friggin awesome).

That being said, the Lavrys, the Myteks and Genex converters all come very close. One contender that is often overlooked but simply blows the doors off of other converters regardless of price are the Lynx Auroras. They sound amazing and are pretty darn flexible too. I would gladly take the Aurora (and did - former Aurora 8 owner and likely future owner again) over many of the higher priced converters for anything needing pristine, beautiful and flexible conversion.

Just a thought.


audiokid Wed, 12/17/2008 - 19:53

Good suggestion Cucco. I'll defintely take your word on that.
I've heard nothing but good about Aurora.
$3000.00 for 16 ins,
$2000.00 for 8 ins.

Apparently the Lynx Aurora 16 works great with Pro Tools, (better sounding and I'm not suprized). The software see's them as two 192's.

How does this compare to the Rosetta 800.

Great thead, now we're getting somewhere.

anonymous Tue, 01/06/2009 - 09:02

I was a Prism dealer for over 4 years and eventually got away from that line. I just couldn't bring myself to recommend a converter costing this much to people when it honestly did not blow the competition out of the water.

In fact, if you are doing rock/pop/hip-hop/r&b/folk/jazz/etc. you really don't want the Prism. It's too clean and pristine. The Prism is great for classical recordings and historical archiving, but it's definitely not a musical converter. Getting your mixes to "gel" is very difficult when using Prism conversion (at least that's what I and a few other engineers I know came to realize).

That being said I went from owning an ADA8 to an Apogee 16X (AD and DA) and now I have settled on the Aurora16's. I have two of them with another on the way. The integration with PT|HD is flawless and unlike any other 3rd party converter on the market. The reason it's different is it matches the latency of the Digi 192 exactly so there's no need for any manual calculations (PT|HD is hard coded to match the specs of the 192 and you would need to manually calculate delay timing against these specs with other 3rd party interfaces). It also matches the port setup of the 192. Both of these features allow seamless PT|HD integration and the ability to use outboard gear as inserts right out of the box.

With the Prism I loved the clarity and stereo imaging but found it hard to "gel" the mix. With the Apogee's the mix gelled but the low mids were out of control (Apogee calls this the "Apogee Sound"). With the Auroras I found the clarity and stereo imaging of the Prism with the musicality of the Apogee (without any coloration).

The Aurora is as close to the sound of the Prism as I've ever heard without being clinical. I can't recommend them highly enough. We've been replacing 192's and Apogee's in studios all over the world with the Lynx Auroras for the past couple of years. If anyone has further questions you are more than welcome to give me a call. Our number is on our website at the top of the page.

kmstudio Tue, 01/06/2009 - 22:55

For those interested, Prism is offering a 30% discount off ADA-8XR converters if configured with at least one Pro Tools I/O card. The offer is good until the end of January 2009. This would bring the average street price per unit to around $8500 each. The link to the offer is on the Prism site here . BTW, I am not affiliated in any way with Prism or any entity with a financial interest in the company.

audiokid Thu, 04/14/2011 - 14:01

After two years of research, investing in hybrid solutions and reading Joshua's post, this thread needs some clarity added to it for our new readers.

You pretty much convinced me Aurora converters are not a great DA for any analog summing this generation and I'll briefly explain. Aurora's are a good price so you have that one right but I think your opinion is bias to promoting the best bang for the buck in the ADC $3000 price range.
Saying you dropped the Prism line gives me the impression it was because of sales and the type of clients you are selling to. From my knowledge now, you should tell your customers that they are wasting their money investing in any mid level DA at this price point. But why when people are following this Aurora buzz and there is money to be made.
If this is the best we have, the majority of people are using poor DA converters and the results are not much better than if they were to "stay ITB" and be done with it.

Its pretty evident now. Public opinion now knows that a very high quality DAC is where its makes the difference.

Providing you can afford better - The last thing anyone wants for any hybrid analog summing system (two tracks or more) is something coined as adding warmth and/or colour etc. and using a prosumer DAC built around the Pro Tools HD generation.
Anything aligning itself with the older ProTools HD generation is also another red flag for the new DAC systems in design post 2011.
Aurora's are a good choice for those shopping on ebay this next year but still, why? IMHO, invest in Pristine DAC or keep it ITB.

TheJackAttack Thu, 04/14/2011 - 15:34

For Prism and Lynx, the PT connection they are talking about is an add on I/O card and has nothing at all to do with the converters themselves. If you don't want it you just don't buy that option. Most of the high end converters use I/O cards to configure the options or are designed with all options instead (AES/TDIF/ADAT/MADI/analog D-sub/SPDIF) unless you are talking specifically of 2 channel units.

I'm not sure I would characterize the Lynx Aurora as a poor converter. Perhaps it is not top of the heap anymore especially for mastering level 2 channel units but definitely not poor.

audiokid Thu, 04/14/2011 - 18:26

No, its not poor, and i'm not talking about the interface's.
My opinion now is, its a waste of money if you are using an Aurora to do the whole hybrid thing/ DA back out if you are expecting great results.... When you are debating going hybrid, investing 20/30/40/100 grand into analog hardware and high headroom analog summing , then your DA should be better than the $1450.00 DA of the Aurora! . And so the question really is... Are you sending 16 channels out to gear for what reason and through what? Lets do the numbers> $2995.00 - $600 commission = 2395.00. Manufacturers profit ( who knows but... 2395 divided by two = $1200 for 16 DA = not high end.

If you are needing 16 AD, and not DA , then the Lynx isn't bad at all, but it still has 16 DA so why are you paying for 16 DA that you don't need? The point is, Josh is saying this but selling people a pisce of gear that isn't helping them in the big picture. Most people would be better off staying ITB with a mid level DA and investing in a better AD and be done with it!

Listening to all this BS and shilling over the years about how it is so awesome over at Gearshilz. But yet we read so much negativity on whether OTB is any different anymore its no wonder.
Plus, How many people are actually sending 16 channels out is the question. Reading dealers and shill recommendations, telling people they even need to do this is questionable IMHO at this ADDA price point. If its because you want to use your old hardware and have fun at it and you aren't too concerned over kicking some serious ass, well ya, sounds like fun and why spend 8 grand on anything like the ADA-8XR.
So, there are better choices for 2 > 4> 8 > 16 AD than the Aurora. Until you hear the difference in high end converters, you keep spending money on preamps and mics is what I'm saying.

If you aren't going hybrid, spend money on a very good AD and hear the difference ITB.

audiokid Thu, 04/14/2011 - 19:13

The Prism ADA-8 8XR is by far the best choice for high end preservation to and from in this comparison. Yes, we all wish it wasn't this expensive but you can't make high end converters at this price and stay in business. The dealer is making $500 or more on it too. It would be easy to believe this sales pitch but too many years of reading between the lines tells me otherwise. If I bought into this, I would end up like the rest of the Aurora crowd; confused and wondering if it was all worth it. 50 grand in hardware and piping it all though a mid level DA at best, for what. If he actually knew WTF he was talking about here, it would go unmentioned. If he was comparing the Lynx to RME, no problem but... :rolleyes:

This is seriously questionable from anyone selling it like this. And being too clean and pristine for a DA...with the buzz music styles "rock/pop/hip-hop/r&b/folk/jazz/etc" to lure in the sheep... man...