2015 has been an amazing year for innovations in the world of pro audio and it doesn't get much better than the evolution of Thunderbolt interfaces. With new additions to the market from Universal Audio, Apogee, Focusrite, Motu, Antelope Audio and more, creating music in the studio, a live venue or the comfort of your home is easier than ever before. Check out some of the best Thunderbolt audio interfaces of 2015 and find out more about the next age of music creation.
Universal Audio Apollo 8P Quad
In 2015, Universal Audio introduced the stunning new generation of Apollo audio interfaces to wide-spread acclaim. Building upon their initial design, the designers at UA packed the Apollos with improved AD/DA conversion, on-board processing and a revamped console application. While each of the new Apollos has much to offer, the 8P QUAD certainly stands as one of the best thunderbolt audio interfaces with the inclusion of eight Unison pre-amps that actually match the impedance of the pres you're UA plug-ins are replicating.
Focusrite Clarett 8PreX
Focusrite has always been known for their high-quality audio, a trait which they wanted to apply to the world of lightning-fast Thunderbolt audio interfaces. The brand's Clarett line of products brings together Thunderbolt technology with transformer-modeled preamps, remarkable conversion and the ability to track and monitor at the same time without delay noticeable to the ear. At the head of the Clarett class is the Clarett 8PreX, a 26 in/28 out interface that features phase reverse and high pass filters for each channel and extended ADAT I/O.
Motu's 828 has been a stable force in the world of audio interfaces for years and the inclusion of Thunderbolt connectivity on the 828X helps to usher it into a new age of technology. Featuring 28 ins and 30 outs, the 828X offers users reliable low latency performance, studio-grade mic channels and the ability to daisy-chain up to six Thunderbolt devices off of one port. Music makers will also be able to use the interface's CueMixFX, which features effects on individual ins and outs including classic reverb, modeled analog EQ, and vintage compressors.
Antelope Audio Orion Studio
Released during AES 2015 in New York City, Antelope Audio's new Thunderbolt interface, the Orion Studio, has made an immediate impact by combining two much-loved pieces of gear together. Condescending the Zen Studio and Orion into a one rack unit, this audio interface features 12 analog ins and 20 analog outs, in addition to two re-amp outs with real transformers. The Orion Studio also offers an on-board DSP engine which utilizes FX including Antelope's Auraverb hardware quality reverb.
Apogee Ensemble Thunderbolt
What can be said about Apogee interfaces that hasn't already been said? A lot actually, considering the new Ensemble includes Thunderbolt connectivity, legendary AD/DA conversion and when you buy now, the Waves Gold Plug-in Bundle. The Ensemble Thunderbolt has quickly gained a reputation as one of the best Thunderbolt audio interfaces as it also comes packed with 8 mic pres with up to 75 dB of gain, front panel guitar inputs, talkback functionality and two PurePower headphone outputs.