35 Best Free Saturation VST Plugins

Download the best free saturation VST plugins to emulate the process of audio going through vintage hardware. This list includes free saturation plugins for Windows and Mac.

Take a look at these saturation plugins. I’ve provided details about each plugin’s features, along with images and videos to demonstrate their functionality.

What Is A Saturation Plugin? Saturation plugins allow you to apply audio saturation effects to digital audio to give it the feeling of going through vintage analog recording hardware. They are used to help create vintage-sounding audio.

Best Saturation VST Plugins

  1. IVGI
  2. Saturation Knob
  3. BPB Saturator
  4. CHOW Tape Model
  5. Aux Saturation
  6. SGA1566
  7. Tape Cassette 2
  8. Burier
  9. DirtyPumper
  10. FerricTDS mkII
  11. GSatPlus
  12. Voxengo VariSaturator
  13. Tube Saturator Vintage
  14. Voxengo Tube Amp
  15. TubeDriver
  16. FreeAMP
  17. XPressor
  18. Leveling Tool
  19. Szechuan Saturator
  20. HeadCrusher Free
Best Free Saturation VST Plugins
Best Saturation VST Plugins

Saturation plugins are often used on individual tracks, such as drums, bass, vocals, and guitars, or on an entire mix to add character and warmth to the sound. They can be handy in genres like hip-hop, rock, blues, and funk, where the sound of analog equipment is commonly used.

Having experimented with countless free VST plugins, I can say that these free saturation VST plugins stand out as some of the best.

Instructions: Click the links below to visit each Saturation VST plugin. Look around each website for the download link or button. Do not install any suspicious software.


IVGI Free Saturation Plugin

IVGI is a saturation VST plugin that can emulate tape or tube saturation, and reacts dynamically to the input signal, delivering very soft and subtle saturation to stereo tracks or dense and dirty tube distortion effects to spice up single tracks.

The plugin has an ASYM MIX knob that lets you alter the symmetry of the signal without affecting the harmonic content much. The frequency response dependency of the saturation can be controlled with the Response Control.


  • ASYM Mix for signal symmetry
  • Harmonic Distortion
  • Low Pass Filter
  • High Pass Filter
  • Controlled Randomness for dynamics


  • Emulates tape and tube saturation
  • Dynamic response to input signal
  • Suitable for stereo tracks or single tracks
  • Offers subtle to dense saturation options
  • Modeled crosstalk behavior for stereo tracks


  • Limited frequency response control
  • No presets for quick setup
  • Some learning curve for beginners
  • Free version has limitations

IVGI | PC & Mac

Best Saturation VST Plugins

2. Softube Saturation Knob

Saturation Knob VST Plugin | Saturation Knob Tape Saturation
Softube Saturation Knob

Softube Saturation Knob is a subtle saturation plugin perfect for adding warmth and vintage saturation. The plugin delivers three modes: high, neutral, and low.

Saturation Knob is perfect for fattening drums and bass, adding harmonics to vocals, and more. Saturation Types: High, Neutral, Low. Adjust low and high frequencies.

Saturation Knob | PC & Mac

3. BPB Saturator

BPB Saturator VST Plugin | Free Saturation Plugin | Tape Cassette
BPB Saturator | Analog Tape Machine Emulation

BPB Saturator is a saturation plugin with high-pass and low-pass filters and tube saturation and tape cassette saturation. The high-pass filter is excellent for removing the low end from your signal, which can help tighten up a mix’s sound or reduce the bass in a track.

The low-pass filter is excellent for removing high-end, which can help dull down a track or add warmth. The tube saturation is modeled after the sound of a vintage tube amp, and it adds warmth and saturation to your audio.

The tape saturation is modeled after the sound of a vintage tape machine, and it adds saturation. This plugin is a great free alternative to paid saturation plugins like the Virtual Tape Machines by Slate Digital, Soundtoys Radiator, and the Sonnox Oxford Inflator.


  • Tube & Tape Saturation Controls
  • Simple User Interface
  • Low Pass Filter
  • High Pass Filter

BPB Plugin | PC & Mac

4. CHOW Tape Model

CHOW Tape Model | Free Saturation VST Plugin
CHOW Tape Model

CHOW Tape Model is based on a digital emulation of a reel-to-reel analog tape machine. It’s one of the most popular saturation plugins, and for a good reason – it can impart a beautiful warm saturation to your audio.

It also has several controls that let you fine-tune how the saturation effect sounds. For example, you can control the amount of saturation, the saturation type (tape, tube saturation, or transformer), the bias, and more.

  • Dry/Wet
  • Input Gain
  • Output Gain

Plugin | PC / Mac / Linux


5. Aux Saturation Plugin

Aux Free Saturation VST Plugin | Free Saturation Plugin
Aux Saturation

Aux Saturation is a saturation VST plugin with features to enhance audio content. Aux saturation emphasizes the harmonics of any loop or sample you feed it, adding richness and life.

It is one of the best saturation plugins for emulating analog saturation.

Aux Saturation | PC & Mac

6. SGA1566

SGA1566 by Shattered Glass Audio
SGA1566 by Shattered Glass Audio

This is a popular saturation plugin for Windows and Mac. It is your perfect saturation effect, whether you need to warm up a sharp kick drum or add a little vintage saturation to vocals.

SGA1566 is easy to use and quickly dialed in a wide range of saturation effects. Its mono and stereo modes make it perfect for various instruments and vocals. The SGA1566 plugin is a great free alternative for the URS Saturation Plug-In, Soundtoys Decapitator Analog Saturation Plug-in, Waves Abbey Road Saturator, and the FabFilter Saturn plugin.


  • Oversampling
  • EQ Controls
  • Stereo or Mono

SGA1566 | PC & Mac

7. Tape Cassette 2

Tape Cassette 2 by Caelum Audio
Tape Cassette 2 by Caelum Audio

Tape Cassette 2 faithfully recreates analog tape recorders’ unpredictable and unique saturation effects. The plugin’s dynamic saturation curve algorithm implements hysteresis and includes oversampling for ultra-realistic saturation effects.

Additionally, it has wow & flutter engines to focus on smoother saturation emulation so that you can achieve the desired saturation effects with ease.

This is one of my favorite saturation VST plugins on this list because of its clean user interface and a great selection of controls.

Tape Cassette 2 | PC & Mac

8. Burier


Burier is a saturation and filter plugin designed for use on various applications. It has a saturation stage, followed by a pair of resonant filters, output attenuation, and dry/wet mixer.

You can go from light overdrive to a hard punchy saturation with Burier. The filters have 12 dB of attenuation per octave and are IIR (Infinite Impulse Responses) filters with a topology-preserving transform structure.

Burier VST | PC & Mac

9. DirtyPumper


DirtyPumper is a saturation VST plugin made to emulate the sound of classic saturation equipment. The plugin will create warmer and fatter sounds when applied.

DirtyPumper can be used to process drums, vocals, or any other type of audio.

DirtyPumper | PC & Mac

10. FerricTDS mkII

FerricTDS mkII | Free Saturation VST Plugin
FerricTDS mkII

FerricTDS mkII is a saturation plug-in for Windows. It aims to produce saturation effects with different saturation models, signal clipping, and tone controls.

The saturation models include saturation, soft clipping, and hard clipping. Several tone controls help you shape the sound of the saturation.

The plugin is easy to use and has a simple interface.

FerricTDS mkII | PC

11. GSatPlus

GSatPlus  | Best Saturation Plugins

GSatPlus is a saturation VST plugin that offers three different tube-based character modes, clip protection, signal monitoring, and oversampling.

GSatPlus | PC & Mac

12. Voxengo VariSaturator

Voxengo VariSaturator  | Free Saturation VST Plugin
Voxengo VariSaturator – Best Saturation Plugin for Vocals

VariSaturator is a versatile saturation plug-in that excels in 2-band and broadband saturation. It features a crossover steepness switch, allowing you to apply saturation to the lows and highs separately or together.

You can also choose between tube saturation/valve saturation and digital saturation, each with its unique sound. There’s also stereo and multi-channel processing and internal channel routing. This saturation VST plugin can be used on mid/side material and supports up to 8x oversampling.

The plugin also has a preset manager for creating and managing presets and zero processing latency. You can choose from several user interface color schemes, and the user interface is resizable.

Voxengo VariSaturator is a good alternative for paid plugins such as the Black Box Analog Design HG-2 by Plugin Alliance, Thermionic Culture Vulture, Analog LoFi Plugin by Waves, and the Vertigo VSM-3 plugin.

Voxengo Plugin | PC & Mac

13. Tube Saturator Vintage

Tube Saturator Vintage  | Best Free Saturation
Tube Saturator Vintage

Tube Saturator Vintage is an accurate tube preamp simulator that adds warmth to audio. It features analog-style VU metering and has no latency. You can use this plugin in mono or stereo.

Tube Plugin | Mac


14. Voxengo Tube Amp

Voxengo Tube Amp  | Best Saturation Plugins
Voxengo Tube Amp

This saturation plugin offers two processing modes, stereo and multi-channel processing, internal channel routing, channel grouping, up to 8x oversampling, a preset manager, zero processing latency, and user interface color schemes.

Voxengo Tube Amp | PC & Mac


15. TubeDriver

TubeDriver Free Saturation Plugin | Best Free Saturation
TubeDriver | Best Free Saturation Plugins

TubeDriver is a saturation VST plugin that recreates warm, saturated sound tube amplifiers. It can add saturation effects to vocals, guitars, drums, and other instruments.

The plugin has a simple and easy-to-use interface.

TubeDriver | PC & Mac

16. FreeAMP Tape Saturation

FreeAMP Tape Emulation Plugin
FreeAMP Tape Saturation | Tape Saturation Plugins

FreeAMP is a carefully trimmed combination of modeled tape and tube algorithms.

FreeAMP | PC & Mac

17. XPressor

XPressor | Free Saturation VST Plugin

XPressor is a saturation VST plugin perfect for adding saturation and warmth to your audio. It features a soft clip, hard clip, and wavefolder saturation algorithms.

It also has low and high cutoff filters to help shape the saturation tone. It offers up to 8 times oversampling for a higher quality saturation.

XPressor | PC & Mac


18. Leveling Tool

Leveling Tool
Leveling Tool

Leveling Tool is a fantastic VST plugin for saturation and adding warmth to your audio files. The tool provides 4x oversampling for top-quality results. It is a simple plugin with a straightforward interface, making it easy to use.

Leveling Tool | PC & Mac

19. Szechuan Saturator

Szechuan Saturator  | Best Saturation Plugins
Szechuan Saturator

If you’re looking to add some edge to your tracks, look no further than the Szechuan Saturator. This unique saturation plugin changes its saturation function continuously as the volume of the input signal changes, giving you some extraordinary saturation effects.

Szechuan Saturator is one of the best saturation plugins for adding edge and attitude to your tracks.

Szechuan | PC & Mac


20. HeadCrusher Free

HeadCrusher Free | Best Free Saturation Software
HeadCrusher Free

HeadCrusher Free gives your audio an extra power boost. It’s perfect for drums, vocals, bass, and master tracks. You can use it to add some saturation to give your audio a more vintage sound.

HeadCrusher Free | PC & Mac

21. Analog Obsession LALA

 Analog Obsession LALA | Best Saturation Plugins
Analog Obsession LALA | Free Saturation Plugin

Analog Obsession is a simple compressor plugin that recreates the sound of the legendary Teletronix limiter/compressor.

Analog Obsession | PC & Mac

Additional Free Saturation Plugins

Now that I’ve covered the best saturation VST plugins, let’s look at some additional saturation plug-ins that you may want to consider.

  1. OCS – The Obsessive-Compulsive Saturation unit was inspired by analog behavior.
  2. OrangeFlavor – Analog principles are applied to digital audio.
  3. Code Red Free – It replicates preamp circuits, EQ curves, and the cta, punchy character of the classic 60s all-tube console.
  4. DR VOS SlickEQ – An easy-to-use, musically flexible saturation plugin.
  5. ACE – This amp is a faithful imitation of the legendary hardware from the 1950s.
  6. MJUC JR. – Capable of both smooth leveling and heavy pumping.
  7. DC1A – Unlike DC8C, DC1A has a smaller compression ratio.
  8. GreenEugene – The drive function can be helpful to add some color and dynamics to the mix when used gently without the drive function.
  9. Amplio – This is a 3-band equalizer for drum loops with adjustable bands.
  10. TesslaSE mkII – It does not utilize tube distortion but rather aims to bring all the subtle saturation and widening from analog to digital.
  11. TesslaSE – A mild and pleasing saturation effect is added to the audio input.
  12. Tape Bus – The Tape Bus is a tape machine emulation plugin that emulates the characteristics of a magnetic tape cassette recorder and its compression and saturation.
  13. TAL-Tube – The characteristics of a vintage tube.
  14. Saturate – This plugin cuts the waveform to create the saturation effect.
  15. Sat – Emulation of saturation from a console.
  16. PhreePhuzz – There are four different saturation settings in PhreePhuzz.
  17. W2395c – W2395c is a beautiful and powerful mid-band EQ by Baxandall.
  18. TSClip – A boost module raises the input level, while a saturation module compensates for low-frequency loss with a bass booster.

I hope you found this list of free saturation VST plugins helpful.

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Mark V.

Written By Mark V.

Mark Valenzuela is a professional blogger, entrepreneur, and educator with more than 15 years of experience in music production. In 2008, Mark founded Hip Hop Makers, a top resource for aspiring music producers and beatmakers. He specializes in content on music production, software, gear, and free music resources. Committed to empowering creators of all levels, Mark continues to inspire and help music creators pursue their dreams.

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