TOP 5 BEST Free VST Plugins For Music Production

When it comes to free VST plugins people are usually really suspicious about the quality of these plugins and rightfully so. In fact, there are a lot of free plugins that sound really bad and are completely useless. Regardless, you shouldn’t let this stop you from trying free plugins because you never know when you’ll stumble across a hidden gem and find something useful!

During my 25 years of experience, I rarely used free plugins. However, recently, some caught my attention that are stunning in quality and efficiency! Hope you like the list and let us know in the comments your thoughts on these plugins. If you know of other free plugins not mentioned in the list of my top 5 best free VST plugins for music production, let us know in the comments as well.

So what are my top 5 free VST plugins I actually use in my music projects and music productions?

  1. VITAL PLUGIN ( download here )

As a music producer, you’re always on the lookout for tools to elevate your sound and streamline your workflow and this free synth will do just that. Vital is a spectral warping wavetable synth and an absolute game-changer for electronic music production. This plugin breathes new life into wavetables through its spectral oscillator warping, which acts on a waveform’s harmonics to create diverse shapes and timbres from a simple source.

Vital is not just a synth, it’s a visual synthesizer. It allows you to see what’s happening behind the scenes with animated controls, filter responses, waveforms, LFOs, oscilloscopes, spectrograms plus more. All animations run at 60 frames per second and are GPU optimized, leaving your CPU free to focus on audio processing. The plugin has a fast drag-and-drop workflow to modulate controls and provides a preview of the modulation. This allows you to experiment quickly without ruining your sound. With custom LFO shapes, snappy envelopes, and randomized sources like Perlin noise, you can modulate your sound in powerful ways.

Vital is a tool that can help you avoid getting stuck on the technical aspects of sound design and allows you to focus on the creative process. It’s about trusting your intuition, letting your ideas flow freely, and not letting the technicalities of sound design or mixing hold you back. With Vital, you can keep on creating and trust in your intuition – you never know where it might take you.

To help you take advantage of and master this powerful synth we have a full online masterclass teaching you how to use it and design your own sounds from scratch. Check out the course here >>> (view course).

And if sound design isn’t your thing, we offer an amazing preset pack that comes loaded with high-quality sounds. View the preset pack here >>> (view presets)

  1. BASSLANE ( download here )

As a music producer, it’s crucial to control the stereo width of low frequencies in your tracks and mixes. That’s where Basslane comes in. This plugin, an improved version of the original freeware classic, allows you to narrow the stereo width of frequencies below a defined threshold. Its unique Side Harmonics feature lets you inject upper bass harmonics, adding definition and pseudo bass width without problematic stereo content in the subs. With Basslane, you can regain tightness in your mix, keeping low frequencies from kick drums, bass lines, and other tracks centered in the stereo field.  

I use it a lot to make my bass feel wider without losing the mono capability and punch!

  1. KILOHEARTS ESSENTIALS ( download here )

As a music producer, you’re always on the hunt for tools that can enhance your creative process and streamline your workflow. That’s where Kilohearts Essentials comes in. This is a free collection of extremely useful effects that can be used as regular plugins in your DAW or loaded as Snapins in any Kilohearts Snapin Host. The beauty of Kilohearts Essentials is that it’s a growing collection. The team at Kilohearts intends to continue adding high-quality plugins to the bundle at no extra cost, meaning your creative options will continue to expand in the future.

The free included plugins are: 

  • 3-Band EQ
  • Bitcrush
  • Channel Mixer
  • Chorus
  • Comb Filter
  • Compressor
  • Delay
  • Distortion
  • Dual Delay
  • Dynamics
  • Ensemble
  • Filter
  • Flanger
  • Formant Filter
  • Frequency Shifter
  • Gain
  • Gate
  • Haas,
  • Ladder Filter
  • Limiter
  • Nonlinear Filter
  • Phase Distortion
  • Phaser
  • Pitch Shifter
  • Resonator
  • Reverb
  • Reverser
  • Ring Mod
  • Stereo
  • Tape Stop
  • Trance Gate
  • Transient Shaper

These plugins are part of the Kilohearts Ecosystem. If you own any of their Snapin Host plugins, all these effects are immediately available for you to combine and modulate to your heart’s desire. With Kilohearts’ advanced modular ecosystem, a universe of possibilities awaits. It’s all about keeping the creative flow going and not getting bogged down in the technical aspects of music production. Give it a try in your own projects and see if it’s something you like.

  1. OZONE IMAGER 2 ( download here )

As a music producer, you know the importance of stereo imaging in your mix. Ozone Imager 2 from iZotope is a free stereo imaging plugin that can help you control the width of any track, perfect for making super-wide sounds or creating narrow, mono-like sources. It features immersive, fluid visuals, full resizability, and a smooth new Stereoize mode. 

The plugin can easily widen or narrow your sounds to fit them in any mix, and its Stereoize feature can turn mono into stereo, with no need for reverb or doubling. With Ozone Imager 2, you can focus on your creative process and not get bogged down in the technical aspects of music production. Give it a try in your projects.

  1. OSIRUS ( download here )

This one is a little bit tricky yet you are getting a free VIRUS synth emulation for your installation efforts! Osirus, a project dedicated to reverse engineering and emulating the Motorola DSP563xx, is just the tool for the job. Synthesizers like the Access Virus A, B, C, TI, Clavia Nord Lead 3, Waldorf Q, Microwave II, Novation Supernova, Nova plus many others have all used this DSP. 

Osirus can help you focus on your creative process without getting stuck in technicalities. At the end of the day, trusting your own intuition is all that matters.

Thank you and have an amazing day in the studio!

Tibor/ReOrder

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