Cherry Audio PS-20 A Polyphonic, ‘Hot-Rodded’ Korg MS-20 Synthesizer

Cherry Audio has introduced PS-20, a new software synthesizer that they describe as an “ultra-realistic, polyphonic, hot-rodded tribute to Korg’s renowned MS-20”.

They say that they’ve recreated the MS-20’s iconic sound, but also have redesigned the patch panel from the original, adding patch points for all oscillators, filters, and VCAs, ‘correcting the confusing terminology of the original’, and improving its usability.

The PS-20 architecture has been “souped up” compared to the original, with 16-note polyphony; a unique three-layer, eight-step sequencer with flexible CV outs; and integrated effects, including a distortion, modulation echo with stereo spread, and a reverb with spring and plate emulations.

It also builds on the original by adding MPE support, chord memory, full MIDI control and more.

Features:

  • Accurate modeling of classic MS-style highpass and lowpass filters
  • Up to 16-voice polyphony with random voice panning available
  • Over 320 presets
  • Three-channel, eight-step sequencer with 1/2-step quantizer and tempo sync
  • Single-key chord memory mode
  • Expanded and simplified full-function patch panel
  • Advanced patch panel cabling system from Voltage Modular
  • External Signal Processor section with normalled sidechain input
  • Virtual instrument and effect plug-in versions included
  • Tempo-syncable modulation generator
  • Unison detune for massive lead and bass sounds
  • MPE support
  • Four user-selectable interface color themes
  • Distortion, studio-quality reverb, and mod echo with tempo sync effects
  • Full MIDI control and DAW automation for all controls

Pricing and Availability

PS-20 is available now with an intro price of $29.

9 thoughts on “Cherry Audio PS-20 A Polyphonic, ‘Hot-Rodded’ Korg MS-20 Synthesizer

  1. It’s nice that it’s MPE. Quite fitting for this kind of synth despite the fact that the original was monophonic.
    One thing which attracts me about MS-20 emulations is the “External Signal Processor”, particularly the Frequency to CV converter. Quite a different effect from pitch-to-MIDI, as it follows the whole contour. Tricky with a guitar (which often has resonance from other strings, obscuring the pitch). Quite fun with voice, even when it’s mistaken (the mistakes are often in perfect intervals with what is sung).

  2. I get the feeling that a few (soft-) modular players will love having this as a controller/centerpiece. I like the polyphony and other obvious pluses, but those patch points are real winners.

    I’m with Enkerli about the external input. I had some early synth pals like me whose rigs were all over the place. The MS-20 became a real player for us as both a synth and a processor. Take my casual word from my hardware time: this is a bigger tool than what you see at a glance. Good coding!

    Man o man, is it a great time to be a novice. You once had to cut grass for 3 years to buy a mega-synth. Now a modest PC and 2 or 3 yards will get you this! 😀

  3. This is actually extremely welcome. Most classic analogue synths have many software clones, but somehow the Korg MS-20 was completely missed–except for Korg’s crappy legacy vst that is a million years old.

  4. Bought it. Had a download issue and Cherry Audio quickly responded with a working download link. Having a blast. Awesome. Two thumbs up.

    1. Its not cheap as much as its a standard courtesy intro price. It will become $49, which is right in line with a lot of other synths, like Roland’s “lifetime” key for my Cloud D-50. The PS-20 wouldn’t be overpriced at $100. Good question, though. You know its a tower of work! Its not a high-volume type of thing, so I’m idly curious about the cost/benefit analysis that came with the first design stage.

      1. My guess: with these clones, Cherry Audio is leveraging its Voltage Modular codebase to streamline and simplify the development process. What they may lose in charging less per license, they are likely making up in sales volume. It’s a brilliant strategy IMO.

        I hope they do Memorymoog next.

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