Finally: the ultimate best free VST plugin roundup of 2016.
Throughout the year, we tirelessly searched the internet to bring you the best free VST plugins out there.
This roundup will give you everything you need: the best Bass VSTs, VST Effects, VST Drums, VST Synths, some Very Strange Things, Vocal Plugins and VSTs for extra Analog Warmth.
Simply put this list will have you covered to make your next banger. Ready to dig in? Let’s go.
Bassline Synth VSTs
1. Steinberg – Model E
The Model E is a useful 3 oscillator bass station capable of pumping out some nice lines.
2. TAL – Elek7ro
The Tal Elek7ro synth-plug is good for pretty much everything. Including making some nice full basses for your tracks.
3. Plogue – Sforzando TableWarp2
The TableWarp2 is part of Plogue’s Sforzando bundle. It’s a versatile synth that gives you tons of classic sounds…
4. NUSofting – Sinnah
The Sinnah is great. It can create cool noisy tones with its 3 channel delay matrix and feedback sculpting.
5. TAL – BassLine
The TAL-Bassline has a warm analog sound and ‘robust core‘ for all your bass and acid needs.
6. U-He – Tyrell N6
The U-He TyrellN6 is a powerful overall plugin that will give you all varieties of nice analog synth sounds.
7. Ample Sound – Ample Bass P LITE II
The Ample Bass P Lite II is a nice electric bass plug perfect for some groovier and more rock-centric bass sounds.
8. LinPlug – Free Alpha 3
Free Alpha 3’s 2 oscillators are perfect for all sorts of nice basses and the built-in presets are superb starting points for all types of bass and more.
9. Bruce Sutherland – JuceOPLVSTI
JuceOPLVSTI’s interface is a lot like a video game and is super easy to use to get some superb basses, leads and pretty much any other sound you need from an FM synth.
10. Synister – SYNISTER
Synister is one of the best looking and easiest to use synth plugins I’ve ever seen. This 3 oscillator synth is perfect for making all types of basslines.
11. Valhalla — Freq Echo
The Freq Echo is a frequency shifter with analog echo emulation. It adds chorus, phasing and flanger effects.
12. Audio Damage — FuzzPlus3
Here’s the updated FuzzPlus distortion pedal emulation from Audio Damage. Amazing on synths and drums for meaty, distorted effects.
13. MH Thump Percussive Subharmonic Synth
MH Thump adds low end to your track. It recreates that nice thump you get on a vintage TR-808 drum machine.
14. Tritik — Krush Bit Crusher
Krush is a very elegant bit crusher. It creates that crunchy digital bit reduction effect.
15. Mercuriall — TSC Overdrive
Meet the Mercuriall Tube Screamer 808—your new overdrive effect plugin. Modelled after the Ibanez TS-808 pedal.
16. Pecheng — Tremolo
The Pecheneg is a tremolo effect. It gives you the power to create rhythmic modulations with your sound.
17. TAL — Chorus-LX
TAL’s stereo Chorus-LX is inspired by the Roland Juno-60 chorus. It’s a simple but powerful tool.
18. TDR — Nova EQ
The TDR Nova is a four-band dynamic Equalizer (EQ). A true workhorse.
19. U-He — Protoverb 1.0
The Protoverb 1.0 by U-He is a different kind of reverb. It lets you generate random settings and save the ones you like.
20. CableGuys — PanCake 2
The PanCake 2 is most flexible panning effect you’ll ever find. It lets you manually draw the curves of your panning modulation.
21. Mx Project — T.Rex 606
The T.REX 606 is a compact rompler modelled after the iconic Roland TR-606 drum machine.
22. Wavosaur — DjinnDrum
The Djinndrum has you set for all that classic sound that the iconic Linn LM-1 drum machine packs in.
23. Studio Linked — Drum Pro
Drum Pro has 20 built in drum kits, 12 pads and global effects, what more do you need from a drum machine plugin?
24. Real Drum Samples — Line Of Legends
This plugin boasts 47 high quality samples, 8 individual output channels, and punch, release & attack knobs for some serious tweakage.
25. Sean Pandy — Drums Multi
If you’re looking for a heavier metal-style drum sound on your mix, this VST will definitely give you it.
26. Teragon Audio — KickMaker
The KickMaker is a plugin built for crafting the perfect kick. So what’re you waiting for? Get kickin’.
27. BeatSkillz — Beat Factory Drums
Beat Factory Drums is easy to use, sounds great, and packs a serious punch.
28. MT Power — Drum Kit 2
The MT Power Drum Kit 2 has a top notch drum sounds that cut through any mix AND a fully pre-programmed groove library.
29. Dub Turbo — DrumTroop
The DrumTROOP drum machine is big both in its sound and what it offers. It’s a “weapon of mass production.”
30. Sample Science — Vintage Drum Elements
Vintage Drum Elements has a nice, warm analogue sound that vintage drum machines have.
31. Dexed – FM Plugin Synth
Dexed is a frequency modulation synth, the perfect FM VST plugin. It’s closely modelled after the iconic Yamaha DX7.
32. Audjoo — Helix
The download of Helix is a ‘trial’ but it’s fully functional. It gives you ‘soaring leads, solid basses and glimmering pads.’
33. Martinic — Combo Model F
Combo Model F is perfect for when you need a fun little organ sound.
SYNTH1 is hosted on Geocities Japan. So get ready to take a walk down memory lane.
35. Brain Control — TuneFish 4 Synth
Tunefish 4 is a versatile free VST synth that can create just about anything: pads, leads, bass or any other tasty sound your track needs.
36. Muon — Tau Bassline
The Muon Tau Bassline is modelled after the Roland 303. This small but powerful VST synth gives you that sweet sweet 303 bass we all know and love.
Some Very Strange Things
37. U-He —Triple Cheese Synth
U-he makes cheesy infinitely fun with this ridiculous comb-filter synth.
38. Ohm Force — SymptOhm PE
Any instrument that has a preset called ‘Dirty Maurice’ instantly caught our attention. And it didn’t disappoint when we started playing with it.
39. MDSP Smart Electronix — Livecut Beat Chopper
LiveCut is a beat chopper that runs on some less-than-normal logic. Make some freaky loops!
40. Tytel — Helm Synth
Helm is a synth VST. But you can run it anywhere, change the source code and generally modify the crap out of it.
41. Alan Vista Plugins
We had to put Alan Vista Plugins on this list. But we couldn’t decide on just one. So we picked all of them.
42. Darwin Arts — Trilobite
Apply the basic laws of Darwin evolution to grow your synth patches over time with the Trilobite.
43. Wavosaur — VST Speek
This spell-and-speak plugin reads back anything you type into it. All in a tweakable voice capable of some pretty strange sounds.
44. Piz — Harsh Digital Nose
If a shape could make a sound, what would it sound like? Draw shapes, lines, or pictures right inside this plugin to see what they sound like.
Vocal VST Plugins
45. TDR — Proximity
The Tokyo Dawn Proximity lets you change the mic placement AFTER you record. Useful and pretty cool!
46. Acon Digital — Multiply Chorus
Vocals need some color. Acon Digital’s Multiply Chorus will thicken up your sound.
46. Melda — MAutoPitch
Auto-tune is the vocal mixer’s secret weapon. MAutoPitch is one of the best auto-tune plugins around.
47. Voxengo — OldSkoolVerb Auto-Tune
OldSkoolVerb has got you covered in terms of vocal reverb. Create the perfect sonic space in your mix.
48. Klanghelm — DC1A Compressor
The DC1A is a nifty character compressor. It has you covered “from smooth levelling to heavy pumping.”
49. Alex Hilton — A1 Trigger Gate
Using a step-style sequencer the A1 Trigger Gate packs in a boat load of cool effects.
50. Glitch Machines — Hystheresis
This delay plugin creates “robotic artifacts and abstract music malfunctions.” Count me in.
51. Acustica — Ochre EQ
The Ochre from Acustica is super useful. It’s perfect for sculpting out the best vocals you can.
53. Fine Cut Bodies — La Petite Excite
Exciter plugins add subtle harmonics for some extra sonic-excitement in the high range. Throw this one on your vocal track.
Analog Warmth Plugins
54. Shattered Glass Audio — SGA1566 Tube Preamp
Use the SGA 1566 as a saturation compressor to boost the warmth of your track. Or add a bit of grit with the tube overdrive.
55. TDR — Slick EQ
The TDR Slick EQ is a sleek easy-to-use three-band EQ that gives you amazing sound—like all Tokyo Dawn Records plugins.
56. Shattered Glass Audio — Ace Amp
This amp plugin has simple controls and doesn’t eat up your CPU.
57. Vladg — Molot Compressor
Vladg’s Molot is a compressor with character. It will give your sound interesting color.
58. Voxengo — Tube Amp
Voxengo’s Tube Amp gives you warm overdrive, fuzzy distortion and everything in between.
59. Klanghelm — MJUC Jr. Compressor
Klanghelm’s MJUC jr. compressor is simple and elegant. Use it for smooth compression or a heavier pumping effect.
60. Tone Boosters — TB Reelbus Tape Emulator
The TB ReelBus simulates everything that’s great about a tape machine: warm saturation, tape hiss, wow and flutter and more.
Download the TB ReelBus For Free (the demo version works great).
Bonus: Softube — Saturation Knob
Had to add the Softube at the last second cause it’s just so sweet. Dave Pensado loves it too.
This Saturation Knob is one the best free analog emulation plugins out there. Grab this bonus plug and go!
Gotta Catch’em All
Now that you got all these free VST plugins, time to hit the studio!
Download the entire collection and experiment.
Record better vocals or a stellar synth line. Get freaky with Very Strange Things or stay classy with classic effects.
No more excuse for not finishing that track!
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