The Synthetic Aperture Real-time Ultrasound System (SARUS) for acquiring and processing synthetic aperture (SA) data for research purposes is described. The specifications and design of the system are detailed, along with its performance for SA, nonlinear, and 3-D flow estimation imaging. SARUS acquires individual channel data simultaneously for up to 1024 transducer elements for a couple of heart beats, and is capable of transmitting any kind of excitation. The 64 boards in the system house 16 transmit and 16 receive channels each, where sampled channel data can be stored in 2 GB of RAM and processed using five field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs). The fully parametric focusing unit calculates delays and apodization values in real time in 3-D space and can produce 350 million complex samples per channel per second for full non-recursive synthetic aperture B-mode imaging at roughly 30 high-resolution images/s. Both RF element data and beamformed data can be stored in the system for later storage and processing. The stored data can be transferred in parallel using the system's sixty-four 1-Gbit Ethernet interfaces at a theoretical rate of 3.2 GB/s to a 144-core Linux cluster.