Cherry Audio Releases PS-20 Polyphonic Synthesizer!

VST, AU, AAX, etc. plug-in Virtual Instruments discussion
KVRist
270 posts since 1 Oct, 2018

Post Fri May 14, 2021 9:08 am

Image

Cherry Audio is proud to announce the release of PS-20, an ultra-realistic, polyphonic, hot-rodded tribute to Korg's renowned MS-20 synthesizer.

A Unique Alternative

Intended as an affordable alternative to American mono synthesizers such as the Moog Minimoog and the ARP Odyssey, the original Korg MS-20 was released in 1978, selling for less than half the price of a Minimoog. With that in mind, it’s full of design choices that are sometimes innovative, sometimes maybe dumb, and sometimes just plain off the wall. It’s important to remember that in the 70s, typical analog synth features weren’t yet completely established, so synth design was still in a sort of Wild West, or in this case, “Wild East” era.

All About Those Filters

Perhaps the most notable MS-20 feature is its grindy dual filters. In an era where the gold standard was the fat and velvety Moog ladder filter, the MS filters’ easy-to-distort, screamy resonance couldn’t have been more different. But their signature sound was the unintentional byproduct of a penny-pinching, as-few-components-as-possible design - the similarly crude low-parts-count VCA also contributed to their overdriven sound. The MS-20 wasn’t hugely popular in its day, owing to an overall smaller synth market (Japanese instruments didn’t really take off until the 80s), but as the years went on, people discovered the joys of this unique little monster, along with its baby sibling, the simplified MS-10. The MS-20 really hit its stride in the 90s when William Orbit used one all over Madonna’s “Ray Of Light” record, and people began to scoop them up. Eventually the demand became large enough that Korg reissued the MS-20, first in a miniaturized version, and eventually with full-size editions.

Modularity For The Masses

Beside its unique filters, the MS-20’s other famous feature is a modular-style patch panel, rarely seen in low-priced synths (well, at least in 1978). For most users, it’s something of a mixed blessing, because it appears to add full modular-synth flexibility, but unfortunately lacks a fair amount of connectivity you’d want, such as a separate oscillator outputs and modulation inputs. Overall, its implementation can be pretty confusing, even to seasoned synthesists. At a glance, the Cherry Audio PS-20 patch panel appears very similar, but in actuality, we’ve reconfigured the patch panel considerably, adding desired ins and outs for all oscillators, filters, and VCAs, correcting the confusing terminology of the original, and throwing in a few extras to make it more fun and usable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dh4hO7s1muQ
A Supercharged Hot Rod

We’ve souped up the rest of the instrument with killer extras - most importantly, transforming the original mono instrument into a 16-note polyphonic beast. We’ve also added a unique three-layer, eight-step sequencer with flexible CV outs, enabling control of any patch panel parameter. Rounding things out are integrated effects including a beastly distortion, modulation echo with stereo spread, and a lush digital reverb with fantastic spring and plate emulations. We finished PS-20 off with comprehensive MPE support, and packed it full with more than 320 mind-blowing presets.

As a result, the PS-20 truly is one of the most unique instruments we’ve released. Between its sometimes unpredictable filter behavior, and the tremendous flexibility of its patch panel and sequencer, the creative possibilities are endless. Throughout its development cycle, even us jaded, lifelong synth nerds kept stumbling on crazy, “how the heck did I do that?!?,” sound programming surprises.

Affordable For Everyone!

Cherry Audio is again delivering ultra-powerful synthesis at prices absolutely anybody can afford!

Cherry Audio’s PS-20 Synthesizer is available now at cherryaudio.com, for the bonkers low price of only $29 (List $49). It’s available for both Windows and macOS, in AU, VST, VST3, AAX, and standalone formats, with a free 30-day demo available.

Plus, owners of PS-20 receive 20% off of Cherry Audio's newly updated MS Vintage Bundle mkII for Voltage Modular - now including the new EG-20 and Poly EG-20 Envelope Generator modules! Already own the MS Vintage Bundle? You'll receive 20% off of PS-20!

KVRian
1244 posts since 13 May, 2004 from Germany

Post Fri May 14, 2021 9:10 am

You have some interesting synths but as long as you do challenge/response sadly no money from me.

KVRAF
7408 posts since 2 Dec, 2004 from North Wales

Post Fri May 14, 2021 9:14 am

Looks great, fab price as always (I have no problems with your copy protection, happy VM user)
PC, Studio One, BWS, Live, FL Studio, Renoise, Reason, X32 Desk, Hardware Synths, Drum Machines + Eurorack, TD27 V Drums, Guitars & Basses

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KVRist
186 posts since 24 Oct, 2008

Post Fri May 14, 2021 10:30 am

as long you have "affordable for everyone" synth as long i will follow you.great synth with great price.BUT it would be nice to give the modular version to voltage owner who have purchased your synth ;) just my opinion
dark musician for dark lover.

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KVRAF
15395 posts since 16 Sep, 2001 from Las Vegas,USA

Post Fri May 14, 2021 11:01 am

Trying the demo now and it's a very nice sounding synth. But just as with the Eight Voice the quality of the GUI lets the synth down in my opinion.

The GUI wouldn't stop me from buying the synth but it certainly doesn't encourage me to buy it so I'm on the fence right now. For the price it's impulse buy territory.

I did buy the Eight Voice but haven't spent as much time with it as I'd like due to the Lo-Fi GUI. It's not inefficient just unpleasant for me to use.

But I think for people who like their synths with a raw attitude this will be right up their alley.... :tu:
None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

KVRAF
7408 posts since 2 Dec, 2004 from North Wales

Post Fri May 14, 2021 11:04 am

Once you invest in VM then picking these up as modules rather than a stand alone is great value and very flexible....
PC, Studio One, BWS, Live, FL Studio, Renoise, Reason, X32 Desk, Hardware Synths, Drum Machines + Eurorack, TD27 V Drums, Guitars & Basses

AnX
KVRAF
9393 posts since 17 Nov, 2015

Post Fri May 14, 2021 11:14 am

you could really do with a decent graphics person, especially regarding the knobs....

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KVRAF
2784 posts since 14 Feb, 2001 from What do you care? :)

Post Fri May 14, 2021 1:00 pm

Is it available for PC? ...oops, that was that other company where the programmer doesn't really fancy all of us 'losers' who are on PCs.

Anyway... great job on this one and congratulations on the release. Though, I still have to take it into the studio so that I can compare it with my real MS-20s. :wink:

But I can say already, based on my first play through, that it blows the Korg vst version out of the water in so many ways!

Thank you also for the discount (on top of an already attractive price), and thank you for the included update to existing MS Vintage Bundle owners.

I really wasn't looking for another synth right now, but I am glad that you released this! :hug:

:tu:

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KVRAF
6100 posts since 13 Nov, 2015 from Norway

Post Fri May 14, 2021 5:26 pm

Meh i'll stick with FB3200.
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KVRist
398 posts since 28 Jul, 2006

Post Fri May 14, 2021 5:38 pm

Sequent wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 1:00 pm
Is it available for PC? ...oops, that was that other company where the programmer doesn't really fancy all of us 'losers' who are on PCs.

Anyway... great job on this one and congratulations on the release. Though, I still have to take it into the studio so that I can compare it with my real MS-20s. :wink:

But I can say already, based on my first play through, that it blows the Korg vst version out of the water in so many ways!

Thank you also for the discount (on top of an already attractive price), and thank you for the included update to existing MS Vintage Bundle owners.

I really wasn't looking for another synth right now, but I am glad that you released this! :hug:

:tu:
Yes please post impressions vs real Korg!

Is this gonna be on plugin boutique? Normally I buy directly off the cherry website but I have a ton of credit at plugin boutique that I've been trying to find a way to use up.

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KVRAF
29975 posts since 27 Jul, 2005 from the wilds of wanny

Post Fri May 14, 2021 5:42 pm


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GRRRRRRR!
11608 posts since 14 Jun, 2001 from Somewhere else, on principle

Post Fri May 14, 2021 6:40 pm

rasmusklump wrote:
Fri May 14, 2021 9:10 am
You have some interesting synths but as long as you do challenge/response sadly no money from me.
What? AFAIK it only ever checks once, the first time you run it. After that you don't need to be on line to use it. Cherry Audio's copy protection is as benign as any I have used, not really any different to having to input a serial no.

Anyhoo, I just had a run through some of the presets on the demo. It sounds pretty good, lots of nasty sounds that seem easy enough to tweak. For $29 you hardly have to even think about it, except that I also have the Korg Collection and Korg's MS-20 is pretty damned nice already. Cherry's additions seem well considered - full ADSR envelopes, sub-oscillators and drive into the filters are all nice things to have.

The GUI is a bit challenging - way too fussy, very hard to see what's going on. It's kind of the opposite of the Korg GUI, which doesn't have enough contrast, which means some of the labels can be hard to read. Cherry needs to get rid of all the numbers around the knobs and knock back the lines around them to about 50% opacity.

Overall, $29 is kind of a no-brainer price but I'm just not sure I need this when I already have the Korg. I reckon it will end up cluttering up my VST folder so I think I am going to pass.
NOVAkILL : Dell G7 Core i7, 32GB RAM, Win10, Zoom U24 | Studio One | JP6K, Hexeract, bx_oberhausen, ARP Odyssey, TRK-01, Vacuum Pro, Knifonium, Thorn, Equator, VG Carbon | Uno Pro Desktop, Uno, Analog Keys, Ultranova, Rocket.

KVRAF
3074 posts since 25 Mar, 2016 from Seattle

Post Fri May 14, 2021 7:20 pm

Cherry’s GUI’s always look so low res and blurry on my iMac Pro, I like the sound of this though.
They really need to sort our their GUI’s... Come on Cherry, sort it out!

KVRian
512 posts since 6 Dec, 2014

Post Fri May 14, 2021 9:56 pm

I recently noticed this company, and bought dco-106 and eight voice immediately.
and... again my 29 bux will be crushed.

KVRist
82 posts since 18 Jan, 2016

Post Fri May 14, 2021 11:55 pm

Very nice! :tu: :phones: :tu:

I bought it immediately, wonderful sound - crispy! Excellent effects and additional features (extra patchable things etc). This is a one page synth and the UI is somewhat crowded, but I find the green UI quite nice. If those numbers and small lines/dashes around the knobs were slightly dimmer (or smaller?) the UI could be easier to look for a long periods?

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