Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B revives the Wurlitzer 140B from 1964 as a plugin

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Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B is a new virtual instrument plugin that virtually revives the legendary Wurlitzer 140B from 1964 in your DAW.

The American company Cherry Audio is probably one of the most active plugin manufacturers at the moment. Keep an eye on them; otherwise, they will have a new plugin without you noticing it. 

Just in May, at the start of Superbooth, they released Chroma, a great-sounding emulation of the Rhodes Chroma Synthesizer. They also have something new in the summer— the Wurlybird 140B. So far, the focus has been on synthesis. With this plugin, they open the sample door for the first time.

Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B

The Wurly electric piano is a staple in the annals of rock and pop music, with its rich “bark” and organic timbre gracing countless hits over the decades. Artists such as Ray Charles, Queen, and Supertramp have immortalized its sound, while contemporary musicians like Beck and Billie Eilish continue to celebrate its timeless appeal.

Despite the popularity of the later and often-emulated 200 series, many dedicated Wurly enthusiasts consider the 140B the crown jewel of the family, lauded for its superior action and tone quality.

Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B

The new Wurlybird 140B is an electronic piano plugin modeled after the rare and revered Wurlitzer 140B. from 1964. The question is sampling, physical modeling, or a mixture. In recent times, there have always been different approaches to capturing the sound of a vintage e-piano.

Cherry Audio has chosen the sampling method for its Wurlitzer plugin, plus some modeling. According to them, the sound designer and sample programmer Mike Martin crafted the content by capturing every nuance of the professionally restored 140B keyboard.

Wurlybird 140B also has features that support the sample-based sound engine. On one side, it subtly randomizes key release and pedal sounds, making the results more organic and realisitc.

Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B

Then, it also offers a modeled preamp and faithfully emulated vibrato/tremolo FXs from the original hardware, giving it the original Wurlitzer charm.

That’s not all. Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B also hosts eight stomp-box-style studio-quality effects. These can be magically placed on the lovely, realistic UI with a switch press.

It includes a tube overdrive, chorus, rotator, delay, reverb, and seven-band graphic EQ. Plus, you get a 70s phaser, Lo-Fi vinyl, and noise with all-new algorithms.

All this is rounded off with 50 inspiring Wurlybird factory presets by veteran sound designer James Terris, spanning classic to modern tons.

“The Wurlitzer 140B piano has always been a favorite of mine. I like the warm sound of the germanium transistors used in its particular amplifier, which they changed in later models,” says Jon Carin, respected musician and producer renowned for his work with Pink Floyd, The Who, Kate Bush, and countless others. ”

Cherry Audio’s Wurlybird 140B has got soul. As with all of their products, it has a certain je ne sais quoi due to their painstaking obsession with the details. And the result is pure simplicity.”

Like in all other Cherry Audio plugins, every single parameter of Wurlybird is MIDI controllable and automatable. 

First Impression

At first glance, Cherry Audio has created a high-quality Wurlitzer plugin here. Although I would have preferred more physical modeling than sampling, it sounds very authentic and pristine in the first sound demos. For fans of Wurlitzer sounds, this could be an exciting virtual instrument. 

Cherry Audio Wurlybird 140B is available now for $39/39€. It runs as a VST, VST3, AU, and AAX plugin on macOS (native Apple Silicon + Intel) and Windows. The official website offers a free 30-day demo for download.

More information here: Cherry Audio

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