For most producers out there, third party plugins are essential tools for making music and working without them proves to be a hard task. Owning most of the top tier VSTs out there costs a lot of money however, so looking for the best free plugins could really help, especially when starting out. In this blog post we will give you five of the best free plugins currently out there that will help you take your productions to the next level:
We are starting off with probably one of the best free software instruments available that is very easy to download, install and use. It is also compatible with any DAW so the program you are using would not be an issue. Furthermore this VST is compatible with both MacOS and WIndows.
This plugin has both a 32-bit and a 64-bit version, and installation is quick, however, this requires registering a user account and installing the Spitfire app to manage all the different libraries.
One downside is that the libraries do not have many controls apart from volume, expression and reverb. Other parameters such as “vibrato” and “tightness” are already defined within the plugin. The samples that this plugin uses are stored in a special Spitfire format, so you will not be able to use them with other samplers.
The next plugin we have on the list is a multiband compressor that can bring out dynamic and transient shifts and improve your mix.
Ableton Live users already know about this plugin as it is actually integrated as a preset to one of the stock audio effects.
OTT crushes the sound. You can use it on pretty much all elements in the track – from basses to leads, or even the master channel.
The Vinyl VST by Izotope is a solid lo-fi tool that brings back the warmth and vintage flair of retro albums. Whether you’re shaping small or large sections of your arrangement, it’s easy to give them a new feeling altogether with hisses, crackles, and saturation options. The plugin is supported on both MacOS and Windows and is completely free to download from the Izotope website. Vinyl is a plugin that lets you simulate the dust, scratches, and warp of a worn record and the electrical and mechanical noise of the turntable it’s on. You can apply Vinyl to any source audio to make it sound as if it’s being played from a record and dial in exactly the right character to suit your tune.
Vocal Doubler (again by Izotope) is an intuitive and simple tool to achieve a natural-sounding doubled vocal effect. It’s meant to add a new level of richness and depth to vocals, but also works as an effect on non-vocal sounds.
Last but not least we have included another VST synth, this time oscillator based.
OB-Xd is a rich and thick sounding analogue-style synth that not only sounds good by the standards of a freebie synth, but holds its own against commercial plugins. While it might lack some of the bells and whistles of big name emulations like Arturia’s V Collection - such as onboard effects, sequencing or an extensive preset library - OB-Xd does build on the design of its hardware inspiration with a morphing filter and voice variation controls.