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Antelope Audio Orion Studio Synergy Core Thunderbolt/USB Audio Interface

Thunderbolt 3 and USB audio interface built around the future-proof Synergy Core FX processing platform with 6 DSP + 2 FPGA chips and 12 discrete preamps
MFR# Orion Studio Synergy Core

Product Description

The Antelope Audio Orion Studio Synergy Core is a cutting-edge Thunderbolt 3 and USB interface with 12 all-discrete preamps and unparalleled DSP power. With Antelope’s groundbreaking Synergy Core FX and renowned FPGA professing, the Orion Studio Synergy Core is a world-class recording and mixing studio in a compact, rack mountable solution.


The Orion Studio Synergy Core utilizes the newly-pioneered Synergy Core FX processing platform, which helps free up CPU to improve system stability and enables lower buffer sizes with minimal latency. Equipped with six ARM-based DSP processors and two proprietary Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) chips, the Orion Studio Synergy Core offers staggering signal processing power. Load up to 32 FX channel strips with 8 FX slots each for a maximum of 256 FX instances.

The Orion Studio Synergy Core comes bundled with a comprehensive collection of 50 real-time studio effects, meticulously modeled after classic analog hardware. Instantly add vintage vibe to your tracks with legendary studio compressors, EQs, mic pres, guitar amps and more. And with the AFX2DAW plug-in, you can use Synergy Core effects as inserts inside your favorite DAW.


Compatible with Thunderbolt 3, Thunderbolt 2 and USB 2, the Orion Studio Synergy Core offers lightning-fast connectivity with any DAW on Windows or Mac machines. Stack your channels with powerful effects with no fear of your session crashing. And with Antelope’s Latency-Free Direct Monitoring technology, you can create complex monitor mixes using four digital mixers with up to 32 assignable inputs.


Capture performances with pristine sound quality using 12 discrete transistor preamps—perfectly tuned to compliment Antelope’s Edge and Verge modeling microphones. Combined with the Orion Studio Synergy Core’s Accusonic 3D modeling engine, you can emulate dozens of rare and classic studio microphones.

All 12 preamps also include Antelope’s Direct-In feature, which lets you bypass preamp controls and record directly into audiophile-grade DAC, capable of up to 192 kHz sample rates and 130 dB dynamic range. And with four Hi-Z inputs and purpose-built ReAmp outputs, Orion Studio Synergy Core is a guitarist’s dream interface.

Connect to your favorite analog and digital studio equipment using 16 line outputs via DB25, as well as S/PDIF and ADAT connections. And with Antelope’s legendary atomic clocking and proprietary 64-bit Acoustically Focused Clocking jitter management algorithm, you can always count on crystal-clear, artifact-free audio.

A routing matrix serves as a digital patch bay, giving flexibility to demanding studios willing to save time by routing any audio signal anywhere.


  • Rack mount Thunderbolt 3 & USB audio interface with 12 Discrete mic preamps
  • Synergy Core processing platform with 2 FPGA + 6 DSP chips
  • 2 pairs of monitor outputs run concurrently or in A/B mode with 130 dB dynamic range
  • 30 simultaneous inputs x 22 simultaneous outputs
  • DC-coupled I/O for CV control of analog modular synths
  • Hand-built in Europe to be your pro studio's centerpiece for years to come


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  • VCA160 (Compressor / Limiter)
  • Stay-Levin (Tube Compression Amplifier)
  • FET-A76 (FET Compressor)
  • X903 (Compressor / Limiter)
  • PowerFFC (Compressor)
  • VEQ-HLF (Passive High/Low Filter)
  • BA-31 (Vintage Mic Preamp)
  • ALT-436C (Tube Compressor Amplifier)
  • FET-A78 (FET Compressor Limiter)
  • SMT-100A (Tube Leveling Amplifier)
  • VEQ-1A (Tube Equalizer)
  • VMEQ-5 (Tube Mid-Range Equalizer)
  • BAE-1023 (3-band Vintage EQ)
  • NEU-PEV (Passive Vintage EQ)
  • NEU-W492 (5-band Vintage EQ)
  • NEU-W495 (3-band Vintage Mastering EQ)
  • VEQ-4K BROWN (Legendary Vintage EQ)
  • VEQ-4K ORANGE (Legendary Vintage EQ)
  • VEQ-4K PINK (Legendary Vintage EQ)
  • VEQ-STU 089 (Vintage EQ)
  • VEQ-STU 169 (Vintage EQ)
  • VEQ-STU 900 (Vintage EQ)
  • Clear Q (Parametric EQ)
  • Auraverb (Reverb)
  • Power EX (Expander)
  • Power Gate (Gate)
  • Master De-Esser (De-Esser)
  • Plexi 59 (UK) (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Bass SuperTube VR (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Darkface 65 (US) (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Top30 (UK) Bright (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Tweed Deluxe (US) (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Overange 120 (UK) (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • BurnSphere (DE) Lead (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Marcus II (US) Lead (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Modern (US) CH3 (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Rock 75 (UK) (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Rock 22.10 (UK) (Tube Guitar Amp)
  • Darkface 65 2x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Top30 2x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Modern 4x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Green 2x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Vintage 4x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Green 4x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Caliper 50 1x10 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Bluelux 1x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Clst 1x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • England 4x12 (Guitar Cabinet)
  • Bass Tube 1x15 (Guitar Cabinet)

Product Specifications

Condition New
Chassis 19-inch Rack-mount
Rack Spaces 1U
Input Connectors BNC, Digital Coaxial, Optical, 1/4-inch TRS, XLR Combo Jack TRS
Output Connectors BNC, Analog DB25, Digital Coaxial, Optical, 1/4-inch TRS
Computer Connection Thunderbolt 3, USB
Number of Preamps 12
Clock I/O In, Out
Maximum Sampling Rate 192 kHz
Digital Format ADAT, S/PDIF

Product Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars.
Review Count (12)

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Nice upgrade from the Orion Studio Rev. 2017. The synergy core is more stable and easier to use, support from Antelope over the past few years has also improved.

By Christopher B on September 29, 2022

This is my first experience with Antelope products, I’ve decided to upgrade to a higher level interface featuring a specific list of functionality to cover all my current and future needs. All I have to say is WOW! Absolute flexibility of routing (though it was quite complex at first, but didn’t take much time to figure it out), fantastic plugins (which you also can commit to the recording, if you want), versatility of connection options and finally… The Sound. I’ve never heard so pristinely clear high frequencies in my recordings before, this is the first time I’ve realized how AD/DA conversion really affects the sound. So overall highly-highly recommend this interface!

By Cyril O on July 17, 2022

I'm using this interface through Thunderbolt connection with a 2018 MacMini. So far I've had zero issues. I've seen many complaints about Antelope Audio on platforms like Youtube and Gearspace regarding driver issues and customer support. I've submitted multiple tickets with Antelope regarding the Routing Matrix and they've always responded in a timely manner - no complaints there. As far as build quality the interface is built well and feels how you'd want it to feel with a nice weight. Regarding sound and conversion quality the interface is awesome. Just listening to music with lossless streaming through this thing is a treat. While mixing I've noticed I can pick up on details more easily which seems to be due to better imaging and spread between sounds. The clarity is there 100%. Great interface, I probably won't ever need to replace this thing for my small home studio.

By Hugo C on June 13, 2022

This is for anyone looking to buy the latest version of the synergy core with thunderbolt 3.
Not all of the drivers work with the new apple M1 chips yet and as a result, some features are missing from my interface. My first two preamps do not work at all and some of the features are very laggy, which I don’t know if that’s a result from the type of processing or from the software not being updated yet.
Overall I give it 3 stars because to be honest, the preamps, plugins, and converters sound awesome. The preamps are very transparent, the plugins have lots of fun color to them, and the converters are everything I wanted.
However, I’d advise you to wait a couple months before buying due to their latest version of the synergy core not being fully useable on some devices like mine, atleast that’s what antelope audio and vintage king told me over the phone… i run a MacBook Air with the new M1 chip.
Best of luck!

By Aidan R on May 1, 2022

The audio quality is second to none. I'm also very impressed with the quality of the AFX plug-ins. However, the Orion's drivers and operating software have room for improvement. The USB stability seems great, but the Thunderbolt interface took almost a week of troubleshooting and two fresh installs of Windows 10 before it was working reliably. As of writing this (April 2022), Antelope still does not support Windows 11 at all. There's not even a beta driver available, and the support team will just say Windows 11 is not supported and close your help ticket. The highly touted AFX2DAW that allegedly lets you use Antelope's AFX system real-time while editing recorded tracks is EXTREMELY buggy. It is only officially supported in AVID Pro Tools 12 / Ultimate, Apple Logic Pro X and up, Image-Line FL Studio 20, Bitwig Studio, Cockos Reaper, Steinberg Cubase, and Presonus Studio One. That doesn't mean it always works in those DAWs, it only means Antelope will offer troubleshooting. There is no support and it does not work in Adobe Audition.

I gave the unit four stars because I'm very happy with the quality of recordings I have been creating with it. However, you should be aware that there is quite a bit of false hype around the bells and whistles such as the AFX2DAW. If you're buying for that specific feature, you will be disappointed.

By Fred F on April 6, 2022

I continue to be blown away by the sound quality of the Orion. Words can't really express it—I encourage you to try one if you're interested. The quality and I/O can't be beat at this price and the plugins aren't bad either. I like tracking with a little eq and compression. Great piece, glad I made the upgrade.

By Phil H on September 13, 2021

I have been an Antelope user for a few years, my previous interface was an Orion Studio HD which I loved, the newer version which is this one Orion Studio Synergy Core is fantastic! Not only the FX's are superb, but it also added support for 8 more channels through ADAT which is great! Awesome job Antelope!

By Marco B on June 17, 2021

The Orion sounds great, the only reason for 4 stars is the software is not easy to install, you have to get your head around it, then it makes sense,be prepared to call tech support, BUT it is a great sounding interface with very flexible routing,I’m using it with a SSL Six mixer, so the 16 outputs and the SSL make for great summing and as a high end Monitor control solution, very happy with the setup

By Lockett P on October 29, 2020

Phenomenal Product. One of the most versatile interfaces I've ever worked with. So unique and useful to have 12 pre's in one rack space and have availability of those extra channels without hooking up extra gear. Sounds amazing and the possibilities are endless once you get a hang of the routing matrix. Top notch modeling on the plugins and mic emulations if you pair with and Edge or Verge Mic.

By Jon on October 6, 2020

Getting everything registered was easy with the help of the YouTube video, installing the drivers was easy too (once I realized the launcher will install the most recent USB and TB drivers for you). Of course, the sound is amazing, and the features are unbeatable. The AFX sound really nice and having the processing be outboard is super helpful on big sessions. I am extremely satisfied with the Orion Studio Synergy Core!

By Cameron J on October 5, 2020

Thank you, Bill.

By BIL - on September 23, 2020

Next Level! I've made records with and for many artists over the years but since I purchased my Orion Studio Synergy Core my recordings and Mixes have gone to the next level! Using the AFX2DAW plugings has upgraded my whole workflow. Not only do they sound amazing but using the built-in DSP has allowed my large mixes to flow seamlessly and creatively. Add to that the Edge Duo microphone and it's incredible modeling. I'm set for the next level!

By keath@gcdigi.com on November 30, -0001

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How do you rate this product?
I would like to thank VK for the wonderful sales assistance, service and prices. This was my first purchase with you and it won't be my last. I only wish I'd discovered you years ago!
Matthew R.
I had two Grammy wins this year - Ray LaMontagne & Carolina Chocolate Drops. Both made with help from Vintage King!
Ryan F.
In almost 20 years in Pro audio buying, never did I receive a unit so well packed and exactly as described. Works flawlessly. The whole process has been so smooth. I will never hesitate to do business with you guys in the future and will recommend you to everyone I know.
Martin C.
This was my first experience buying something from Vintage King (although I surf the "used" categories on the website frequently!), and, despite being on the other side of the world, I had absolutely no trouble and everything went very smoothly.
Phil T.
The speed of delivery exceeded my expectations! I was VERY pleased that my shipment arrived in time for a scheduled vocal tracking session. The packing insured that my order arrived safely. And the sales staff responded quickly to questions regarding the product.
James P.
Thank you so much! Vintage King has been so fair and easy to work with. I can't thank you enough. It feels good to trust such a hefty purchase to folks who are so helpful and knowledgeable. Vintage King is a sound designers dream store.
Noa L.
You guys have excellent customer service and I am excited about the next upgrade I complete on my fifth recording facility. I've been in the studio business for forty plus years. The salesman I worked with at Vintage King was the best of the best. You all rock!
Robby T.
I would recommend Vintage King to any one looking for top-class gear, unbeatable customer service and the best prices on the map!
Jake D.
My experience with Vintage King was excellent. The order was here fast considering it was out of stock. The sales person had SKB send it to me directly and I couldn't have been more pleased.
Michael D.
From the minute I placed my order I was kept well-informed through each step in your process. Even though I was buying a comparatively modest piece of gear, your attention to detail made me feel like I was purchasing a six-figure mixing desk.
Thomas W.
I am a new customer of yours. You guys provided me the absolute best deals in ordering all the equipment to power my brand new recording studio. Your customer service is amazing and i will always deal with you from here on out.
Rob M.
Thanks for your great service and getting this out today. You guys really are the Kings!
Alan B.
Better than expected! Truly impeccable service. Your team was professional, knowledgeable, provided speedy delivery above and beyond standard. Vintage King Audio is definitely my go to for all of my audio and information needs.
James O.