Cherry Audio's GX-80 is more than a replicant, and much more than just a CS-80 emulation

Made up of an innovative group of developers, musicians, programmers and synth designers, Cherry Audio are known for producing industry-leading emulations of classic synthesizers and innovative original software instruments. 

Today, they’ve announced the GX-80, a soft synth that’s inspired by the Yamaha CS-80 - but this hybrid instrument is a great deal more than an emulation of that ‘70s classic. Over a year in the making, this groundbreaking instrument is one of the manufacturer’s most ambitious projects yet. But before we can truly understand the depth and complexity of the GX-80, let’s first take a brief history lesson…

The Yamaha CS-80 is without doubt one of the most legendary synthesizers in musical history. Released in 1977, this classic eight-voice polysynth is the instantly recognisable sound behind some of cinema’s greatest film scores and can be heard in music from a variety of truly iconic artists, including Vangelis, Kraftwerk, Stevie Wonder, Jean-Michel Jarre and Paul McCartney. 

Prior to the CS-80’s release, Yamaha developed the GX-1, a hefty, 300-kilogram synth organ equipped with three keyboards and an onboard drum machine. Though it was limited in its capabilities for sound modification, the GX-1 was a powerful instrument that acted as a test bed for the development of the CS-80, and contained a host of features that weren’t carried over to subsequent designs. 

Cherry Audio’s GX-80 fuses the spirit and functionality of both the GX-1 and the CS-80 inside a new software instrument, creating a hybrid of these two celebrated machines that’s never been seen or heard before - and we mean that quite literally. This is without doubt the first instrument, software or hardware, to unite what musicians and producers love about the CS-80 with the expanded capabilities of its older brother, the GX-1. 

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(Image credit: Cherry Audio)

The GX-80 makes it simple and easy to switch between the time-tested sonics of the CS-80 and the unique architecture of the GX-1. Single-layer mode will enable access to the synth’s outstandingly accurate recreation of the CS-80, delivering an experience that’s as close as possible to the original hardware and packed with masterful reproductions of features such as the synth’s distinctive ring modulator and its factory preset selection.

Activating dual-layer mode instantly adds the GX-1’s two extra voice ranks, opening up a new universe of possibilities for sonic experimentation. The GX-80 incorporates the GX-1’s octave-up triangle waveform, invert filter envelope control and additional resonant filtered saw and pulse waveforms. Perhaps the most impressive augmentation is the GX-80’s painstaking reproduction of the GX-1’s renowned filter, which produces strikingly resonant timbres inaccessible to even the original CS-80. 

As a result, the GX-80 boasts an impressive, dual-layer voicing architecture outfitted with 16 polyphonic voices per layer. The instrument is capable of sounding two different patches simultaneously, while panning each rank independently, to produce exquisitely rich stereo timbres and complex, layered sounds. What’s more, the GX-80 comes pre-loaded with 1,000 expertly designed presets and equipped with studio-grade effects, meaning jaw-dropping sounds are no more than a few clicks away. 

Try a free 30-day demo of the Cherry Audio GX-80 or purchase the synth directly from Cherry Audio’s website.

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(Image credit: Cherry Audio)