Reverb? Choose!

Choose between a 600lb decommissioned bomb turned drinks cabinet and the first plate reverb unit, EMT140: a German-made, vintage, sonic wonder. Your call: impress guests or mesmerize audiences?

One of these will reverb your vocals or guitar but hmmm… which one?

Well, both weighs roughly 600lbs. So, whichever you lug into your studio will take more than one person to move it!

How about I tell you “Exhibit B” is actually a decommissioned cluster bomb turned expertly into a drinks cabinet by British company Plane Industries. And “Exhibit A” is formerly known as a Elektromesstechnik 140 Reverberation Unit or EMT140 for short. Manufactured in Germany and released in 1957 it has been found on innumerable records ever since.

Not only that…

The EMT 140 was the very first Plate reverb of its kind. It works by a central transducer attached to a suspended steel plate. “Pickups” are used to convert vibrations from the plate in a similar way that guitar pickups convert string vibrations into sound.

Image shows one side panel of the EMT140 reverberation unit.  From the article Reverb? Choose! article courtesy of

Manufactured forms of reverb have been in parallel development since the late 1940s. Emulations such as Arturia’s REV Plate 140 can position this imposing and expensive beast into your own studio set up for far less.

Image shows the control and input panel for the EMT140 reverberation panel.  From the article Reverb? Choose! courtesy of

Give me space

Measured in Hertz. The letter f indicates “frequency” and CP indicates “cycles per second” which is the now antiquated term for Hertz.

The EMT140 typically has a warm and expansive sound making it ideal for that distant melancholic guitar or heartfelt vocal.

Image shows reverberation time dial of the EMT140 reverberation unit.  From the article Reverb? Choose! courtesy of

So, whether you decide to spend your money on a very flashy drinks cabinet or a classic reverb unit. Will all depend on where your interests lie. Both will provide you with a conversation piece, and either one will certainly be something to feel justifiably proud of owning!

Image shows valves attached to a panel of the EMT140 reverberation unit.  From the article Reverb? Choose! courtesy of

Whilst you’re here…

Click Luminaries to see a growing list of other related articles. Or perhaps if you are more into creating rather than reading has the de-complex sample pack set for release in December!

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