Housed in a 1U chassis, the Orbit features the same summing architecture as its older siblings; all of which are direct descendants of the company’s flagship 5088 mixing console. “Rather than using an external summing solution that offers little more than an ultra-clean representation of the in-the-box experience,” says Rupert Neve Designs, “the Orbit provides the extraordinary richness, harmonic complexity and depth that only a Rupert Neve console can bring to your mixes.” To shape the sound character, the company’s acclaimed Silk Red and Blue circuitry provides full control over the amount of harmonic content and tone of the mix. “Silk Red accentuates transformer saturation in the high and high-mid frequencies to amplify the vibrant midrange harmonics associated with Rupert’s vintage equipment, while Silk Blue enhances saturation of the lows and low-mids to add thickness and weight to any mix.”
While the Centerpiece and Satellite feature various options to control level, pan, inserts, and monitoring, the Orbit is designed for easy recall and seamless integration with a DAW-based workflow. Sixteen inputs are provided via DB25 connectors, the first eight of which can be precisely center-panned via front panel switches, and both sets of XLR outputs utilize Rupert Neve Designs’ own custom transformers. In addition to the Main outputs, the -6dB outputs – originally developed for the company’s best-selling Shelford Channel – are also simultaneously available, allowing the user to drive the Orbit’s mix buss harder into saturation without clipping the next device in the signal path. According to the company, “This unique transformer drive is a hallmark of the sound of Rupert Neve throughout the years – and the sound of countless classic hit records.”
The Orbit offers precisely fixed channel levels and accurate mix buss attenuation via high-quality stepped switching, leading to “vanishingly low crosstalk, and channels matched to within +/- 0.1dB. This provides the widest and most accurate stereo image, the greatest depth, and the most direct signal path, allowing you to hear every single detail of your mixes.”
To expand the channel count, multiple units can be combined via the Link I/O on the rear panel. The 5057 Orbit can also be used as a building block in an expandable summing system utilizing the 5059 Satellite for flexible summing and routing, and the 5060 Centerpiece for additional mixing and monitoring features. According to Rupert Neve Designs, “These units create the core of a world-class analog modular console system rivaling any traditional large-scale studio setup. There are other summing solutions on the market – but only the Orbit, Satellite, and Centerpiece give you the legendary sound of Rupert Neve.”
The 5057 Orbit begins shipping worldwide in February 2021, with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $1,999 USD.