Download over 500 free VST Plugins and free VST instruments to add thousands of virtual instruments and effects to your music production setup. These are the best VST plugins for Windows and Mac.
If you’re a musician or music producer, you know that having access to quality sound effects and instruments is essential for creating amazing music. I have 100+ round-up articles on the best VST plugins that can be used with digital audio workstations like FL Studio, Ableton Live, Pro Tools, Reaper, and more.
VST instruments, such as Pianos, Synths, Organs, and Bass, give you additional sounds to create music.
There are literally thousands of great free VST plugins for Windows, Mac ( Audio Units ), and Linux that can work with most digital audio workstation apps and VST host applications.
VST plugins are great for all music creators, such as music producers, sound designers, recording engineers, musicians, bands, and even live performances.
VST plugins come in various types, each offering unique features for different music projects.
There are several types of VST plugins:
VST effects are digital signal processing modules used in recording studios and can be used for live performances.
With VST effects, you can completely transform the timbre of an instrument or vocal track, from adding vibrant reverb to crisp EQ contours or applying audio effects to sounds.
Autotune VST Plugins – Autotune plugins can help you fix the vocals in your music recordings. Free alternatives to paid plugins like Antares Auto-Tune and paid plugins by Universal Audio and Abbey Road Studios.
Bass Amp – Emulate the sound of a bass guitar amp for completely free. Features simulators for bass amplifiers, bass preamps, speaker cabinets, and more.
Bitcrusher – A bitcrusher plug-in is a handy tool that can add grit and character to your digital audio signal.
Chorus – A chorus plugin alters the original signal to create a fuller, richer sound – free download of chorus effect plugins.
Compressor – A compressor is an audio effect that smooths out the volume of a signal by reducing the dynamic range. It is helpful when recording vocals and instruments. Includes multiband compressor add-ons.
Delay – A delay plugin adds repeats or echoes of a sound signal to create a more spacious and richer sound. These are free alternatives to the Voxengo Tempo Delay plugin.
Distortion – A distortion plugin can add grit, warmth, and character to your tracks.
Effects – A free VST plugin collection of the best audio effects freeware. You will find effects great for home recording, audio mixing, and live performance.
Equalizer – Adjust the high and low frequencies of your input signal. Features dynamic EQ, high pass, EQ match, and a diverse range of audio controls. Includes Tokyo Dawn Labs and TDR Nova.
Filter – A filter plugin can be used to process audio. There are comb filters and other filter types available.
Flanger – A flanger effect is an audio signal processing effect that alters the sound of a recording. It achieves its sonic signature by mixing two identical signals but with one signal delayed by a minimal and gradually changing period, usually measured in milliseconds.
Glitch Effects – A glitch effect allows you to create strange, unexpected sounds and textures.
Granular – A free plugin that allows you to break sound files into small pieces to create new sounds or textures.
Guitar Amps – Simulate the sound of a physical and real-world guitar amp. Use a digital guitar amp to create impulse responses from any sound source. Get high-quality sounds with a free version of these guitar effect plug-ins.
Limiter – A limiter ensures that the peaks in your audio signal don’t exceed a certain level, preventing clipping and distortion. Many of these plug-ins offer a robust feature set.
Noise Gate – A noise gate plugin helps to remove noise from your audio signal, resulting in a cleaner sound.
Phaser – A phaser is a signal processor that adds cyclic modulation to the original signal, resulting in a sweeping effect.
Pitch Shifter – A pitch shifter is an audio effect plugin that allows the user to change the pitch of an audio signal.
Reverb – A plate reverb allows you to create an echo-like effect on your audio tracks. Add a convolution reverb to an audio input with these Reverb VSTs. Mimic small rooms, big halls, and other real spaces.
Saturation – Emulate the sound of vintage analog recording hardware. It offers different saturation modes to create a unique sound. Includes saturation knob.
Talkbox Emulators – A talk box emulator is an audio effect plugin that emulates a talk box’s sound, usually used to create funky and unique vocal effects.
Tape Stop Effects – A tape stop effect emulates the sound of a recording or playback machine being turned off abruptly.
Tape Emulators – A tape emulator plugin is a great choice to add analog warmth and character to your digital recordings to make a digital sound like sampled instruments.
Vinyl – A Vinyl VST plugin can add analog warmth and grit to your digital music production.
Vocal VSTs – Vocal plugins can help take your vocal mixes to the next level. Includes a free VST plugin bundle of vocal and mixing tools.
Vocoder VST – A vocoder is an effect that can make your voice sound robotic and have other creative audio effects.
Voice Changer – Using a voice changer plugin, you can change the sound of prerecorded audio or vocals in real-time.
VST Instruments are digital replicas of analog instruments and can create life-like sounds that range from bass and drums to guitars, strings, and synthesizers.
There is a mix of virtual and sampled instruments recorded from real instruments.
808 Bass – Includes deep bass drums and bass synths to create deep bass sounds. Great bass sounds for Hip Hop, EDM, Trap, and more.
8-Bit VST – These can create Lofi chiptune music with a retro feel found in vintage NES games.
Accordion – A collection of the best free accordion plugins, sound libraries, and accordion samples online.
Acoustic Guitar – The best acoustic guitar freeware add-ons for realistic guitar sounds, strum effects, and nylon string picking.
Ambient – Plugins that generate atmospheric sounds, great for ambient music. It can be used to layer unique textures into existing tracks or even develop entire compositions on their own. Create captivating soundscapes and sonic landscapes.
Bell – Collection of bell sound libraries, including handbells, chimes, sampled tubular bells, Sleigh Bells, and holiday bells. Includes free Kontakt libraries, which work with the free Kontakt player.
Bass VST Plugin – Includes bass guitars, bass synths, bass drums, and more.
Bassline Plugins – The best plugins for creating basslines.
Brass VST Plugin – Brass instruments such as saxophones, tubas, trombones, trumpets, and more.
Cello – The best cello plugins and Kontakt Libraries for the Kontakt player.
Chiptune – Used to create the classic 80s music found in video games.
Choir VST – Choir plugins created with recordings of real ensembles and synthesized choir vocals.
Claps – A collection of clap sounds.
Drum Kit VST – Digital replicas of physical drum kits. Includes power drumkit.
Drum Sequencer – An assortment of plugins to create drum patterns and rhythms.
Drummer VST Plugin – Musicians can add drummer-like sounds to their music using drummer VST plugins. The presets usually come with various sounds, so you can create music that matches your style.
Electric Guitar VST – The best electric guitar plugins with distortion, reverb, delay, and chorus effects.
Electric Piano – There are electric piano plugins that include audio samples recorded from real electric pianos and synthesized programs that reproduce the sound of an electric piano.
Flute – A collection of the best free flute virtual instruments online.
Grand Piano – An assortment of grand piano plugins with ADSR controls, audio effects, and more.
Guitar VST Plugins – The ultimate compilation of guitars, including electric, acoustic, bass, guitar amps, guitar effects, guitar synths, and more.
Harp – Emulate the sound of a Harp instrument. Use recorded harp samples or synthesize harp sounds.
Harpsichord – These instruments emulate the sound of a harpsichord.
Horns – A collection of brass instruments.
Keyboard VST – A compilation of vintage hardware synths, pianos, and vintage keyboard add-ons.
Kick – Get access to hundreds of kick drum sounds, which are great for all music genres.
Labs VSTs – The best digital instruments by Spitfire Audio Labs.
Mellotron – Digital replicas of the vintage Mellotron tape-based keyboard instrument.
Orchestral VST Plugin – I have gathered all of the best Orchestral add-ons, including violins, cellos, grand pianos, flutes, and more.
Organ – Includes sample and synthesized organ sounds.
Percussion – Get access to hundreds of percussion sounds, including kicks, snares, claps, shakers, cowbells, congas, drums, and more.
Piano VST Plugin – This is the ultimate collection of the best VST plugins that will give you access to hundreds of realistic piano sounds to use with your music projects.
Rhodes – Digital replicas of vintage Rhodes pianos.
Rompler – Synthesizer with audio samples stored in its internal memory rather than recordings from live instruments.
Sampler VST – The best samplers to chop, loop, and edit samples.
Saxophone – Includes saxophone sampled instruments.
String Machine – A collection of synthesized string sounds. These add-ons merge strings and synths to create a unique sound.
Shaker – The best free shakers percussion instruments in the VST plugin format. These sets include tambourines, triangles, Nepalese bells, agogo bells, brake drums, rototom rims, sleighbells, and wind chimes.
Snare – Free snare add-ons that give you tons of customization and control to tweak snare sounds to your liking.
SoundFont Players – A SoundFont Player VST plugin allows you to load and play SoundFont files (.sf2) in your favorite DAW. Similar to the Native Instruments Kontakt Player.
Strings VST Plugin – A post of the best harp, cellos, violin, and other free string plugins online.
Synth VST Plugin – The ultimate collection of over 100 free synths to download. Free download for free synths. Includes popular synths by Matt Tytel.
Synthesizer Plugins – The best free synthesizer plugins.
Trumpet VST Plugin – Includes synthesized and recorded trumpet instruments.
Violin – A good selection of violin and string virtual instruments to add realism to your tracks. Includes sampled instruments.
Woodwinds – The best woodwind instruments.
These plug-ins allow users to simplify the mixing and mastering process. Popular VSTs include parametric equalizers and clippers, which help users tame frequencies and shape their mix.
Reverbs, compressors, delays, and saturation plugins can add depth to a mix.
Additionally, advanced analysis tools such as spectrum analyzers can help pinpoint specific frequency issues with particular sounds in a mix.
With many diverse plugins available, VST Utilities provides producers and audio engineers with numerous options for sculpting a professional-sounding record.
A VST host application allows you to install multiple plugins within a single environment.
Each of these categories of plugins has its use cases and advantages depending on what kind of production work you’re doing.
Whether you are looking for realistic-sounding instruments or powerful sound design presets, the variety of available options makes VST plugins essential tools for creating professional music production projects.
Here are a few free plugin alternatives to paid plugins and replicas of vintage hardware as digital VST instruments.
Commonly Asked Questions:
If you are new to using VSTs ( Virtual Studio Technology ), I will answer common questions about these virtual instruments and free plugins to know how to use them with music production.
VST stands for Virtual Studio Technology. VSTs are audio software plugins you can use with music software to add additional instrument sounds or audio effects.
Some examples of instrument sounds would be a Piano, Violin, Trumpet, etc. Some examples of free VST effects would be Choruses, Phasers, and Reverb.
These plugins provide virtual instruments, sound effects, and other audio tools that allow musicians and producers to create incredible sounds without spending a fortune on expensive hardware or studio time.
The best part is that hundreds of free VST plugins are available online – both paid and free – so finding the perfect sound is easier than ever!
One significant advantage of free VST plugins is that they allow you to experiment with different sounds and styles without investing in expensive audio software or hardware.
This makes them ideal for beginners just starting in music production and more experienced producers who want to explore new sonic possibilities.
Another great benefit of free VSTs is that they can help improve your workflow by providing quick access to the sounds and effects you need without having to search through multiple libraries or folders.
These plugins also have helpful features like preset banks and integration with popular DAWs (Digital Audio Workstations).
This means you can easily control all aspects of your plugin from within your DAW – no more switching between applications!
Plus, some plugins even come with built-in automation tools, which make it even easier to get creative quickly.
Each virtual instrument offers a different user interface, controls, and sound quality. So, it is important to test multiple plugins to test their features.
These are the best VST plugins online at FREE and are great alternatives if you don’t have money to buy paid plugins from Native Instruments, Plugin Boutique, and other online VST stores.
The best free VST plugins are Graillon 2, Keyzone Classic, DSK Overture, Ample Bass P Lite II, TyrellN6, Antarestech – Autotune Evo, Tunefish4, DSK Brass, VSCO2 Trumpet, and MAutoPitch.
I know these plugins are popular because these are the most clicked plugins on Hip Hop Makers.
Tutorial: How to Install VST Plugins
VST plugins are some of the most powerful tools available to musicians and producers today.
With a VST plugin, you can access hundreds of professional-grade audio effects and virtual instruments that will give your music projects more depth and complexity.
Whether you’re playing live shows, recording audio in a music studio, or producing tracks in the comfort of your own home, VST plugins are helpful for any music creator.
From synthesizers emitting otherworldly sounds to specific engineering tools for adding unique nuances to recordings, VST plugins give creators the power to create better music.
The most popular and widely used programs support VST plugins, including FL Studio, Ableton Live, Garageband Steinberg’s Nuendo, Pro Tools, Reaper, Logic Pro, Sony Acid Pro, and many more. With a host of options to choose from, today’s music makers can take full advantage of all the tools these VST plugins provide.
A VST plugin can help create sounds for music production. It enables producers to develop and manipulate synthetic sounds through a library of built-in sound processing algorithms.
This allows producers to craft arrangements intuitively and achieve the desired tonal qualities necessary for the production or recording process.
VST plugins render effects like reverb and delay through a user interface, allowing for better mixing capabilities inside the DAW and music production software.
A great place is Hip Hop Makers. I have over 100 articles on the best free VST plugins online, sorted by instruments, effects, and music genre.
I have spent hours searching the web for the best plugins and gathered images, descriptions, and hands-on YouTube videos.
Related: Best VST Plugin Websites
I have tons of round-up articles featuring collections of some of the best free VSTs online – perfect for any musician or producer looking for great sounds without breaking their budget!
Free VSTs offer an incredible opportunity for producers who want access to top-quality sounds without spending big bucks on expensive hardware or studio time.
From virtual instruments and sound effects to customizable settings that let you tweak parameters until you find just the right sound – there are hundreds of great free VST plugins available online that can help make your music production set up even better than before.
The free VST plugins I have included in the articles are excellent alternatives to paid VST plugins, such as Native Instruments Komplete Start, Nexus, Serum, Native Instruments Kontakt Player, and more.
If you have both the time and patience, you can find professional-sounding virtual instruments similar to those found in Native Instruments Komplete Start.
Related: Free Music Samples