Primal Poly

Meet The Mercury-4

Mercury-4 is a detailed emulation of one of the best-sounding and quirkiest polyphonic synthesizers of the late 1970's, the Roland Jupiter-4. It’s the rarest and most sonically unique of the fabled Jupiter series, and we’ve gone to great lengths to recreate the subtle (and not-so-subtle) nuances and character of this beloved classic. Every aspect of Mercury-4 has been expertly modeled upon a vintage Jupiter-4 originally owned by Greg Hawkes of the legendary 80’s new wave band The Cars, and played on their double-platinum 1981 album Shake It Up. In Greg’s words, Mercury-4 “sounds just like my old Jupiter! It’s nice to have it back.”

The Jupiter-4 had its share of disadvantages, including limited patch storage, just four voices of polyphony, and boat-anchor weight. Cherry Audio’s Mercury-4 improves upon the original’s design by offering 16-voice polyphony, infinite patch storage, velocity sensitivity, MPE support, and much more. We’ve even paired it with a fantastic model of the classic Roland Space Echo tape delay.

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I love it. Fantastic what you did, integrating the Space Echo. What can I say… you have done it again. Thank you once again for building such fantastic instruments!

Richard Termini Educator, Film Director, Synthesizer programmer and player / Cyndi Lauper's platinum-selling album She's So Unusual, The Fixx, Patty Smyth, others.

I love it, it sounds so good! I turned on the random arpeggiator mode and just started playing with all the faders. Sounds just like my (old) Jupiter! Nice to have it back - the sound is really fat, and having the Space Echo there is a nice touch. I used to spend hours in the pre-MIDI days playing along with the arpeggiator synced to a CR-78 drum machine, and of course I had a Space Echo too!

Greg Hawkes Keyboardist, The Cars. Inductee, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

This plug-in is AMAZING! Putting the Space Echo section in was brilliant - it adds so much color and vibe to already amazing sounds. That's usually what I do when I pull up a soft synth - add tape and saturation. It's so great to have it right there and save it as a preset. Beautiful job on the GUI too - it's awesome. Hard to pick a favorite out of all the CA synths, but this one could be my fave! You guys obviously did a great job coding because there's barely a CPU footprint. 

Christian Matthew Cullen Former keyboardist / Night Ranger. Abe Laboriel Jr. (Paul McCartney), Alan Parsons, Bo Bice (American Idol), Brad Gillis (Ozzy), Deen Castronovo (Journey), Eric Martin (Mr. Big), Jack Blades (Damn Yankees), Jim Peterik (Ides of March), Jimi Jamison (Survivor), Joe Lynn Turner (Deep Purple), Joe Zook (One Republic), and many more.

Poly In The Beginning

Originally released in 1978, the Roland Jupiter-4 synthesizer was one of the earliest instruments to combine voice-assign polyphony with digital patch storage - that is, the ability to store and recall sounds to a digital memory and recall them at the touch of a button. 

The Jupiter-4 rapidly became the go-to polysynth for numerous English and European acts in the 80's including Duran Duran, Thomas Dolby, The Human League, Simple Minds, and more, and for good reason: the Jupiter-4 sounded fantastic, with a raw, raunchy tone not found in any of the other beloved Juno and Jupiter synths. Its analog oscillators have a uniquely aggressive tone quality, the built-in sub oscillator adds girth, its oddly fast and deep LFO modulation capabilities allow it to create uniquely whacked-out modular synth-like tones, and Roland's famous stereo chorus "ensemble" circuit is beautifully implemented, adding a boatload of width and dimension.

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Greg Hawkes’s Jupiter-4, atop the Prophet-5 in the center, at The Cars’ Syncro Sound Studio, during the Shake It Up sessions, 1981. (Photo courtesy of Greg Hawkes)

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Greg Hawkes’s Jupiter-4 in the Cherry Audio lab, modeled for Mercury-4.

Mercury-4 lovingly recreates Jupiter-4's bold and unusual analog oscillators, powerful dual filters, and easily overdriveable VCA section. We went to great lengths to perfectly replicate the unique arpeggiator section, heard on tons of classic new wave tracks, as well as the original's two massive unison modes. We've added a Drift knob to dial in just the right amount of vintage character. The renowned stereo BBD ensemble effect has been beautifully modeled, and we’ve also added a truly other-worldly "Space Echo"-style tape echo with multiple reverb modes. The tape echo perfectly recreates the warm tonality and subtle speed variations that make the original Space Echo units so desirable. 

Mercury-4 is packed with over 400 killer presets, including the Jupiter-4's legendary front-panel factory presets, and 75 presets from acclaimed sound designer Huston Singletary.

Mercury-4 Sounds

Title of Song

  • Darkness (Human League cover) - Mitchell Sigman
  • Loopiter 4 - Jezz Woodroffe
  • Mercury-4 Power - Parker Tichko
  • John Glenn In Orbit - Richard Termini
  • Compuphonic Phunkmaster - Torley
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Arpeggios - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Basses - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Strings and Brass - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Pads - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Poly - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Leads - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demos | Chords - James Terris
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 1 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 2 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 3 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 4 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 5 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 6 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 7 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 8 - Huston Singletary
  • Mercury-4 Preset Demo 9 - Huston Singletary

Mercury-4 Features: 

  • Authentically modeled oscillator with sub oscillator
  • All filter characteristics modeled, including powerful low-frequency resonance
  • Up to 16-voice polyphony
  • Over 400 presets, programmed by industry veterans
  • Exactingly replicated unique arpeggio section w/tempo sync
  • Carefully modeled wide-range LFO modulation with "inverted" mod characteristics
  • Drift control for increased analog realism
  • Precisely replicated stereo ensemble effect
  • Warm and organic tape echo with multiple reverb modes
  • Tempo-syncable LFO
  • Detunable unison mode
  • Single-key chord memory mode
  • Highly optimized coding for high performance with ultra-low CPU load
  • User-adjustable oversampling control
  • Advanced one-click UI magnification
  • Comprehensive MPE support
  • Full MIDI control and DAW automation for all controls

Mercury-4 is available in AU, VST, VST3, AAX, and standalone formats.

A free 30-day demo of Mercury-4 is available. This demo will play white noise periodically, but is otherwise unlimited.

macOS Requirements: macOS 10.9 or above (including macOS 12), 64-bit required. Native Apple M1 processor support. Quad-core computer with 8GB of RAM recommended.  

Windows Requirements: Windows 7 or above (including Windows 11), 64-bit required. Quad-core computer with 8GB of RAM recommended.