Here are the best free chiptune VST plugins to produce a vintage 8-bit video game sound. This includes chiptune synths, drums, and other virtual instruments for Windows and Mac.
What Is A Chiptune Plugin?
Chiptune is a musical genre that emerged in the late 1980s. It uses old-school electronic sounds and can be created using any number of synthesizers or computer programs designed to replicate the sound chip from an early video game console.
Chiptune plugins allow you to create the vintage synthesizer sounds of classic video consoles like the Nintendo and Sega Genesis. Chiptune plugins are popular among chiptune artists and electronic music producers.
Best Chiptune VST Plugins
The chiptune VST plugins below are all free to download, and many of them have no restrictions on how you can use them.
- Retro Boy
- 38911 Bytes
- basic 64
- Nintendo VST
- GB DrumBox
Related: Free VST Plugins
Instructions: Click the links below to visit each Chiptune VST plugin. Look around each website for the download link or button. Do not install any suspicious software.
ymVST is one of the best chiptune plugins available. It is perfect for recreating the authentic bleepy or microsounds of old-school video consoles. It also has a three-step arpeggiated chords feature, which can create complex chord progressions.
In addition, it has a wide range of percussion sounds, including kicks, hi-hats, and snares. It also has various buzzer effects that can be used to create hard or soft sounds.
It also has an Angel sync-buzzer effect, which is a unique feature. However, it should be noted that the emulation is not 100% accurate.
ymVST | Windows
IceCream is a chiptune VST plugin that helps you create the 8-bit sounds of classic video games. It has dual oscillators, 4 octaves per oscillator, and a step sequencer pitch/filter.
It also has a bit crusher for 8-bit, 16-bit, 24-bit, and 32-bit sounds and a filter section and amp/filter ADSR.
You can also create harmonic sounds with the harmonic switch, add reverb, and delay with the effects section.
The plugin is one of the best chiptune virtual instrument plugins available because of its wide range of features and sounds.
IceCream | PC
PULS is one of the most versatile chiptune VST plugins available. It offers two oscillators with pulse waveforms, adjustable pulse width, and modulation by an LFO.
There is also unison per oscillator, sync and ring modulation between oscillators, adjustable non-linear release, tempo-sync LFO with four waveforms, and modulation by detuning and volume.
The arp can cover one to four octaves, is synced to the host, and has six patterns. There are also 32 presets covering many chiptune styles to get you started.
If you’re looking for a chiptune VST plugin with many features and sounds, PULS is the one to get.
PULS | PC
4. Retro Boy
Retro Boy is a chiptune VST plugin that creates the classic sounds of retro gaming systems. It features a single oscillator with seven waveshapes, allowing you to make those nostalgic synth sounds with ease.
Retro Boy is also very CPU-friendly, making it an excellent choice for chiptune enthusiasts. Additionally, it includes volume, vibrato, and decimation controls to help you fine-tune your sound, as well as ADSR envelopes and voice control for up to four voices.
It is one of the simplest chiptune VST plugins available, but it is still very powerful. Retro Boy is an excellent option if you’re looking for a plugin to create classic chiptune sounds.
Great free alternative to Super Audio Cart Complete.
Retro Boy | Windows
Bobistron is a chiptune synth that uses phase distortion to create classic sounds reminiscent of the 8-bit era. It’s not an emulator, meaning that it doesn’t recreate the exact sounds of old-school synthesizers, but it comes close.
You can control the amount of distortion with the bitcrusher, which sits after the volume control. This allows you to get the perfect sound for your chiptune track.
Bobistron | PC
6. 38911 Bytes
If you’re looking to create chiptune sounds that will take you back in time, look no further than 38911 Bytes. Based on software from the Commodore 64 era, this plugin can create various old-school sounds.
It features one oscillator synth with four waveforms and pulse width, noise cutoff, and noise level controls. You can also choose from octaves ranging from -3 to 4.
The filter, pitch, and PW modulation envelopes also have stages ranging from 1 to 8. There are also 13 different curves to choose from and a Sustain point from 1 to 7, or even off.
You also have the option of choosing from three different filters – low-pass, band-pass, and hi-pass – as well as two LFOs with 19 different waveforms. The LFOs also have a sync option.
This plugin is perfect for recreating those classic chiptune sounds from the 80s and 90s if you’re nostalgic for that era or simply want to add a touch of vintage flair to your bit music.
38911 Bytes | Windows
7. basic 64
This chiptune VST is a fantastic emulation of vintage synthesizers for chiptune music. It offers many features that make it easy to create chiptunes quickly.
The three oscillators each have their own ADSR envelope and can be modulated by the pitch envelope or LFOs with attack/release curves. There is a wobble option for adding instability to the sound and flexible routing to the state variable filter.
The monophonic or polyphonic option makes it possible to create solo chiptunes or full chiptune tracks. MIDI learn and MIDI CC support make it easy to control the plugin from a MIDI controller.
If you’re looking for a plugin that can create classic chiptune sounds with ease, basic 64 is a great option.
basic 64 | PC
basic65 is a chiptune synthesizer with three oscillators, pulse width modulation, resonance filter, and more. From arps to leads to lofi sounds, basic65 offers you a massive world of chiptune sounds.
You can even increase your chiptunery by choosing from four, six, or sixteen-bit audio, making the chirpy sound even more chippy. basic65’s randomizing feature can also add instant inspiration to your soundscape.
With a simple, easy-to-use interface, it is one of the best chiptune plugins for experienced users.
basic65 | Windows
9. Bleep Free Chiptune VST
Bleep is a chiptune VST that can create some exciting sounds. There are three oscillators with four waveforms each, which gives you a lot of flexibility in creating your chiptune sounds.
Each oscillator also has its own detuner, ADSR envelope, and multimode LP/BP/HP filter. The plugin also has a multimode LFO synced with BPM to create even more variation in your sounds.
There is also a modulator envelope generator to create even more exciting sounds. Finally, there’s a pseudo arpeggiator to make even more variation.
Bleep is an excellent chiptune VST plugin that can help you create some fascinating sounds if you’re looking to add some classic chiptune sounds to your bit music.
Bleep | Windows
10. Nintendo VST ( NES VST )
If you’re looking to add that 8-bit sound to your music, look no further than the Nintendo VST plugin. This plugin is designed to emulate the classic sounds of old-school video games.
It comes with a powerful advanced interface and features authentic-sounding waveforms. Whether you’re looking to create chiptune music or add a bit of nostalgia to your tracks, the Nintendo VST is an excellent option.
Nintendo VST | Windows
VOPM is an emulation of the Yamaha YM2151 (OPM) 4 operator FM sound chip. Supporting MIDI CCs and chiptune VST plugins, its uses as chiptune plugins allow you to create the vintage synthesizer sounds of classic videos found on 8-bit videogames.
If you’re looking for chiptune sounds that can be tweaked and customized, VOPM is an excellent option. It also has a simple, easy-to-use interface.
VOPM | Windows / Mac
12. GB DrumBox
DrumBox is a chiptune VST plugin that sounds like vintage chiptunes and old-school video game soundtracks. It has 12 drum kits, each with its own volume, envelope, pan, filter, reverb, and modulation settings. This plugin is perfect for recreating the sound of classic video games and chiptunes.
GB DrumBox | Windows / Mac
GameX is a chiptune VST plugin for making chiptune sounds. It has 85 unique one-shot sounds and an extremely minimalist, user-friendly interface that’s easy to use by both chiptunes novices and experts alike.
The sounds in GameX come from the OP-1 portable synthesizer, so you know that they’re top quality and unique. If you want to add some chiptune flare to your tracks, then GameX is the plugin for you. It’s also free, so there’s no reason not to try it out.
GameX | Windows / Mac
If you’re looking for classic chiptune sounds, DrSid is the plugin for you. With 320 sampled sounds to choose from, this plugin is sure to give you the chiptune sounds you’re looking for.
It also has six sound slots, each with decay, tune, and octave controls so that you can customize your chiptune sounds to perfection. Additionally, the plugin has a straightforward interface, making it easy to use for anyone.
DrSid | Windows
miniSID is a chiptune VST plugin that creates the sounds of classic 8-bit video games. It comes with three waveforms sampled from a 6581 SID chip, two oscillators with oscillator sync, and an arpeggiator with four modes and four speeds.
You can also control all parameters using MIDI CCs, making it easy to use with a controller. So if you’re looking for classic chiptune sounds, miniSID is an excellent option.
miniSID | Windows
We hope you like this list of the best free Chiptune VST plugins online.