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The Cranborne Audio 500R8 is the centerpiece to the modern studio. It's a 28-in/30-out USB audio interface that combines a 500 series rack and high-performance AD/DA conversion with all of the connectivity required in the modern professional or home studio.
500R8 features the studio essentials that you need to build your dream studio such as an 8-into-2 high-headroom analog summing mixer, comprehensive monitor controller with talkback facility, 16-in/16-out ADAT interface, as well as a zero-latency analog artist mixer with reference-quality, high-powered headphone outputs.
By capitalizing on the vast and ever-growing 500 series market, you can configure your 500R8 to suit your tastes of analog flavour. By installing your favorite 500 series modules into the 8 available 500 series slots, you can create your ultimate analog front-end/preamp stage that can be multi-track recorded directly into your DAW.
Fill 500R8 full of vintage preamps for recording drums. Fill 500R8 full of clean and pristine preamps for recording strings. Fill 500R8 full of Preamp, EQ, and Compressor modules to create your own custom analog channel strips. The possibilities are endless and every 500R8 is unique to your sound.
Integrating 500 series modules into your workflow doesn't stop after the recording. Dedicated module source switches for each 500 series slot allow you to send USB channels from your DAW, into 500R8, through the 8 installed 500 series modules, and back into your DAW for recording (with that analog ‘mojo’ applied). Think of 500R8 as a bank of 8 external analog plug-ins.
For a more hands-on, all-analog approach to mixing, 500R8 also features an 8-into-2 high-headroom analogue summing mixer with dedicated level and pan controls that you can use to create your own high-headroom analog mix before recording it back into your DAW using dedicated USB inputs 9/10.
In order to capture every subtle nuance of your analog signal, 500R8 features reference-class AD/DA conversion with 121dB (A-wtd) dynamic range and THD+N of <0.00032% (@ -4dBFS, 1kHz, A-wtd), all governed by 500R8’s master-reference grade internal clock with <0.5 picoseconds of jitter.
The combination of highly-accurate, low-jitter clocking and high-performance digital conversion ensures that every ounce of analogue character is captured with the utmost detail - free of unwanted digital artifacts from the conversion process and with a wide dynamic range thanks to 500R8's high-headroom analog design and low noise floor.
Cranborne Audio's USB 2.0 audio interface provides high channel-count and low-latency performance while being accepted by all PC/macOS devices with unparalleled stability and longevity. 500R8 is core audio compliant for macOS or features a lightweight control panel for Windows machines that absorbs as little CPU resources as possible to leave you with more power for plug-ins within your DAW session.
Plug 500R8 into your PC/macOS device and your DAW will see a full 28-in, 30-out USB audio interface. 500R8 also includes a full complement of 5-pin MIDI I/O, ADAT I/O, Word Clock I/O via BNC, and S/PDIF I/O to ensure that all of your digital studio connectivity is covered.
500R8 features a comprehensive monitor controller with connectivity for two sets of studio monitors. As well as seamless speaker switching between both sets of studio monitors, there’s a Mono button that sums L-R channels to check for mono compatibility, a DIM switch that drops the speaker volume by 12dB for relaxed discussions during recordings, and a speaker mute switch for tracking with headphones.
500R8 also features a comprehensive Talkback section with XLR input, 48v phantom power, push-to-talk operation, and automatic signal routing to all C.A.S.T. and headphones outputs connected to the system.
Analogue summing can give your mix the final bit of analog character required to achieve professional and polished sonic results. What makes 500R8's 8-into-2 channel summing mixer so special is that it is positioned after the 8 500 series slots - allowing you to insert saturation or subtle 'bus-compression' modules and create a stereo mix using 500R8’s dedicated analog level and pan controls beneath each module. 500R8's summing mixer also has a dedicated converter which can be used to record your stereo mix into your DAW on USB inputs 9/10 with a massive +24dBu of headroom.
500R8 moves away from clunky "virtual" software mixers and gets your hands back onto the mix. By using 500R8’s high-headroom analog summing mixer, you can create zero-latency, all-analog mixes of live sources that can be blended with discrete USB playback paths and sent directly to the recording musicians via C.A.S.T. or the local headphone outputs.
C.A.S.T. stands for Cat 5 Analogue Snake Transport and enables cost effective and organized cable management around your studio. C.A.S.T. repurposes off-the-shelf, shielded Cat5 Networking cables to transport 4 channels of balanced analog audio over a single cable.
500R8 has 4 C.A.S.T. IN ports that allow you to connect C.A.S.T. enabled breakout boxes (such as the Cranborne Audio N22 and N22H) to 500R8 and relocate analog I/O wherever it is needed around the studio.
Connect mic/line sources into the C.A.S.T. breakout box and that signal travels through the Cat 5 cable and directly into the modules installed into 500R8. At the same time, the analog mix created on 500R8 is sent through the same cable and into the connected breakout box. This allows for seamless analog audio connectivity between the control room, live room, vocal booth, or the bedroom next door!
C.A.S.T. is 100% analog and requires no setup in order to operate. It can easily work at distances up to 100m when Cat 6e or Cat 7 cable is used and a complete cat 5 studio cabling infrastructure costs a fraction of what analog multi core would cost. No setup. No latency. No fuss. And it sounds great.
To ensure that every product bearing the Cranborne Audio name is worthy of studio environments big or small, every 500R8 is carefully assembled by a skilled workforce with immense attention to detail and every product is tested thoroughly by a skilled engineer before shipping to destinations around the world.
|Unit Weight||15.43 lb|
|Module Type||500 Series|
|Module Slot Count||8 Slots|
|Input Connectors||BNC, CAT5, Optical, 1/4-inch TRS, Analog XLR|
|Output Connectors||BNC, Optical, 1/4-inch TRS, Analog XLR|
|MIDI Connections||In, Out|
Gonna keep it at 5 stars. Few quibbles with build quality and the power supply (which might still be on my end so I won't knock them for it), but the versatility is mindblowing. I love it.
The amount of flexibility this platform has is truly incredible. Being able to select between XLR, USB or CAST (CAT5E) connectivity with a flip of a switch makes session setup and transitions a breeze. Multiple options for monitoring and a built in summing mixer. It’s awesome.
I’ve also got the ADAT and they just work well together to give me a total of 18 channels of I/O.
This device took me to the next level.
Works perfectly with:
X2 SSL 611 EQ
X2 API 550A
For preamp i use my old spl creon conected to the back input of the 500 unit (the lest one) so i can do crazy eqing with all 4 500 series i own.
I've had this a couple months now and I can't speak highly enough about the sound quality of this interface. The monitor outputs can be very very loud and clean. The build quality is fantastic, no loose knobs and everything feels solid.
The headphone outs are the hottest I have ever come across. This is a big plus in my book as I have had problems in the past with headphone amps not cutting it when things get loud.
with no modules installed, It makes a great 8 in 8 out line level interface and mixer. Using the summing mixer, I was able to set up a no latency headphone mix for the artist while monitoring through the main DAW outputs (9/10)
setting the system sounds to go through (7/8) i was able to set a loopback recording of system sounds without needing additional software like soundflower or voicemeeter. This can be useful for recording podcasts or skype calls or any situation where you need to route the audio back into your daw.
Using it with core audio on Mac was pretty painless for the most part. It takes some working in the audio midi setup to configure things like system sounds to go through outputs other than 1/2 but overall it is very stable and easy. The Windows drivers are very good. The standalone driver software is straightforward and all of the outputs show up to easily set the system output to whatever you want in the sound preferences. I think this is the first time I actually liked the windows drivers more than the Mac drivers!
I love this piece of gear. Changed my life. Best thing that ever happened to my recording process.
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