Best Free 64 Bit Vst Compressor

by admin

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“My audio sample sounds dry” – I’ll add a reverb effect to make it wet (sound roomy) a little!

That was a joke, I can bet you have come across several effects in your software applications (DAW) such as reverb, delay, compression, distortion, and other various effects.

But! Why do we use audio effects in the first place?

To answer that question, I’ll ask you a simple question. How would your meal taste without any ingredients?

Tasteless right! Yh, sure, it’s still eatable but it lacks flavor. Let’s transition back to the old question, why do we use audio effects?

Audio effects are software devices (ingredients) that manipulates an audio signal to a specific taste, it can make a dry audio signal sound wet, it can help in controlling the gains of an uncompressed sound (proper leveling of peaks), it can make a dull audio sample sound lively, and it can also be misused (think of adding too many/too little salt to your meal).

“AdHd Leveling Tool is a Tube Leveling Amplifier inspired by the legends and carefully crafted to meet your compression needs. The ideal compressor for vocals. Perfect for giving character and taming the peaks on any track in the mix. Windows VST 64/32 bit host compatible. Mac AU/VST 64/32 bit host compatible”. Moving on, the PSP VintageWarmer 2 can best be described as digital emulation of a single/multi-band analog-style compressor. Speaking of which, it brings the delightful taste of warm analog sound with everything housed in a straightforward interface. Familiarity with compression (and the different types of compressor) is the best way to understand how dynamics can be tamed to perfection and with this collection of free VST compressors you’ll have plenty to work with. Best Free Compressor VSTs In 2020. A curated selection of the best free 64 bit emulations of analog synths in VST or Audio Unit format for Mac OS X or PC Windows. These VSTi can be used in Ableton Live, Logic Pro, Steinberg Cubase, FL Studio, Bitwig and all other daw and hosts that support VST plugins and AU.

Since we know the importance of using audio effects, I would be recommending some of the best free VST effects plugins.

It doesn’t make any sense to randomly list the effects, so I decided to categorize each and every effect, all compressor vst effect plugin would be under the Compressor Vst category, reverb vst effects plugin would be under Reverb Vst category, you get the idea.

Page Contents

  • Compressor Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin
  • Reverb Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin
  • Delay Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin
  • EQ Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin

Let’s get cracking…

Compressor Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin

Compression is an effect or an audio processing tool that is used to control the overall Dynamics of an audio signal or an audio portion.

Some of the best free compressor plugins are…

1.) Audiofb – SeteChave Compressor

SeteChave is the first compressor on our list and is designed with characteristics close to the “pumping” effect. It can be used for parallel compressing and it is really intuitive with minimal knobs, so, you will quickly get a hold of this one.

Features:

  • Input – Input signal gain control from -12db to + 12db
  • Att – Attack spanning from 1.2ms to 500ms
  • Rel – Release ranging from 20ms to 5s
  • Threshold – with decibel range from 0db to -36db
  • Ratio – Compression ratio, ranging from 1: 1 to 200: 1
  • Knee – Curve gives compression, which varies between values 1 and 5 Output – Output signal gain control from -12db to + 12db.

Specification Requirements:

  • Windows: Minimum of Win 8.1
  • Mac OSX: Minimum of 10.10
  • Supports Only 64bits of this format: VST/VST3/AAX/AU

Download (Requires Free Registration): SeteChave Compressor

2.) TDR Nova

Nova is a parallel equalizer and a multiband compressor that can tackle and fix a wide range of applications when processing. It can feel a little bit daunting when using TDR due to its various knobs, but you should easily get familiar after experimenting with its features and besides, it is free 😉

TDR NOVA is useful and works with all kinds of audio material, be it a drum bus asking for more crispiness, or a sibilance issue with your sounds, Nova got your back!

A simple UI design, drag and drop display with a classic “Knob” interface given quick and smooth access to the various parameters driving NOVA’s powerful processing capabilities.

The most interesting thing about this tool is that it has a rare feature you would find in Nova is that it allow users to copy and paste presets, and a lot of more great feature.

Features:

  • Parametric equalization
  • Dynamic equalization
  • Frequency selective compression
  • Multi-band compression
  • Wideband compression.

Specification Requirement:

  • Compatible with Windows ( Windows Vista, 7, 8, 10 and later versions) and macOS X 10.7 and above
  • Win 32bit formats: VST2/AAX
  • Win 64bits formats: VST2/VST3/AAX
  • Mac OSx 64bits formats: VST2/VST3/AU/AAX

Download TDR NOVA

3.) T-Chain

I can’t even believe this is free (well, partially!)

T-Chain as it names sounds, it is a chain of different plugins or a channel strip plugin that is designed for modularity, users can arrange different sound modules within the signal path, you get the idea!.

For example, you might decide to use it as a single Eq or a compressor module and if you so wish, you can arrange different sound modules such as a free EQ, Compressor, Gate, and Splitter (for splitting the signal into two distinct paths), one of the most exciting features about this free plugin, is that the module can be rearranged, added, and deleted by drag-and-drop, this way, your life can be easier rearranging your signal chain.

I should mention some modules aren’t free but getting a free Eq, compressor, gate, and splitter is more than enough for so many use cases.

Features:

  • Free and Paid modules, with the ability to demo any module at any time
  • Customizable spectrum analyzer and waveform display
  • Full-featured preset management system with searchable filter and text-based importing/exporting
  • Multiple plugin interface size (compact, small, medium, and large)
  • A/B Comparison feature for the entire plugin, and for individual modules

Specification Requirement:

  • Available on Mac and PC; in VST, VST3, AU, and AAX formats; and 32- and 64-bit architecture

Download Mac: T-Chain for Mac

Download PC: T-Chain for Win

4.) TDR Kotelnikov

TDR Kotelnikov is a plugin by tokyodawn, the maker of TDR Nova.

Kotelnikov is a wideband dynamics compressor that is designed with high fidelity dynamic range control with deep musical flexibility. Their Nova plugin is a combo of Eq and Compressor while Kotelnikov is built solely for dynamic processing and has an on par features such as a proven control scheme, individual release control for peak and RMS content, an intuitive user interface, and powerful, state of the art, high-precision algorithms.

This plugin is suited when used as bus compression and or a master channel, if you try throwing many instances of Kotelnikov on your mixer inserts, you’ll eat your CPU up!

Features:

  • 64bit multi-rate processing structure for highest accuracy
  • “Delta” oversampled signal path (bit transparent at 0dB gain reduction)
  • Super fast, yet natural sounding compression
  • Flexible sidechain highpass filter
  • Advanced stereo linking options optimized for the stereo bus
  • Delta preview mode previews the difference between the compressed and original signal
  • Latency compensated, click-free bypass (i.e. processing never interrupted)
  • Advance User interface rescaling (100%, 125%, 150%)

Specification Requirement:

  • Compatible with Windows ( Windows Vista, 7, 8, 10 and later versions) and macOS X 10.7 and above
  • Win 32bit formats: VST2/AAX
  • Win 64bits formats: VST2/VST3/AAX
  • Mac OSx 64bits formats: VST2/VST3/AU/AAX

Download Mac: TDR Kotelnikov

Best Free 64 Bit Vst Compressor Tool

5.) Multiband Compressor – OTT

OTT is based on a popular Ableton compressor presets and are redesigned has a three-band compressor that can either be used as an Upward or Downward compressor.

Download OTT

6.) Beatskillz – Max1

I might be biased in this review but personally, this is one of the best auto-compressor plugins out there. Max 1 will automatically analyze the ratio depending on the audio source and compress accordingly.

If you feel itchy about using an auto compressor tool, you are as well covered, Max1 comes with the default compressor knobs (Threshold, Attack, Gain, and the likes). In addition to this, it also comes bundled with a soft clip switch so you can clip anything that goes past 0dB, this way, you can save extra effort using a Limiter.

Features:

  • Auto-Compressor with “intelligent” and variable release time and ratio settings.
  • Control your peaks very easily or increase the energy and levels of your track or mix effortlessly.
  • The Plugin has accurate metering for both L/R input and output channels as well as Gain Gain Reduction Metering.
  • Great Presets to get you started on all types of material and also save your own presets.
  • When compressing a lot, just use the “Attack” knob to dial back the punch easily. Use the soft limit to make your track loud effortlessly and transparently.
  • Never Lose “Bass” when maximizing your mix or sounds, retain the character of your sounds with this transparent dynamics processor.
  • Easy Effortless Compression and Energy Maximization.

Download: Win 32 VST / Win 64 VST / Mac OSX VST / Mac AU

Note: You might be asked to provide a serial key, just input your email and if you don’t get one by email, click not today

7.) Dead Duck Free Effects Bundle (25 VST audio effect plugins)

This is a bundled effect plugin by Dead duck. It contains 25 original VST audio effect plugins covering everything from essential mixing tools such as EQ, compression, and limiting to creative sound-shaping tools such as delays, modulation effects, and reverb:

  1. AutoFilter: A resonant 4-pole low-pass filter with a built-in LFO modulator.
  2. AutoPan: An auto-panning modulation effect with optional tempo-sync and width control.
  3. BitCrusher: A bit-crusher effect for lo-fi distortion.
  4. Channel: A multi-function channel-strip plugin featuring gate, compressor, equalizer, limiter, filters and gain controls with comprehensive input, output, and gain-reduction metering.
  5. Chorus: A stereo chorus effect with optional tempo-sync.
  6. Compressor: A peak compressor with optional external side-chain input.
  7. DeEsser: A de-esser for reducing sibilance and other unwanted high-frequency sounds.
  8. Delay: A stereo delay featuring independent left and right channels with optional stereo linking and tempo-sync.
  9. DJEQ: A three-band ‘DJ-style’ equalizer.
  10. DualFilter: A high-pass and low-pass filter combination with full-range cutoff frequencies and resonance.
  11. Equalizer: A four-band parametric equalizer with switchable low- and high-shelf bands.
  12. Expander: A downward expander with optional external side-chain input.
  13. Filter: A multi-mode filter including low-pass, high-pass, band-pass and band-stop responses from 12 to 48 dB/octave.
  14. Flanger: A stereo flanger with optional tempo-sync.
  15. Gate: A noise-gate with optional external side-chain input.
  16. Limiter: A ‘soft’ limiter with optional hard-clipper.
  17. MonoDelay: A mono-delay with optional ‘ping-pong’ stereo output and tempo-sync.
  18. Overdrive: An overdrive distortion effect.
  19. Phaser: A stereo, multi-stage phaser with optional tempo-sync.
  20. Reverb: An efficient algorithmic reverb with pre-delay and input filtering.
  21. RingMod: A ring-modulation effect.
  22. SigGen: A signal-generator with sine, pink noise, and white noise outputs.
  23. TiltEQ: A tilt-equalizer for adjusting high/low-frequency balance.
  24. Tremolo: A volume-modulation effect with optional tempo-sync.
  25. Utility: A multi-function mixing utility.

Download: Dead Duck Free Effects Bundle

Reverb Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin

Reverb is the simulation of the sound of space. This space could be your bathroom, a small room, a concert hall, a chamber, and so on.

It can be used to create all sorts of effects but it can easily be misused too, basically reverb effects can be used to…

  • To create depth in a mix; pushing elements further back in a mix
  • To glue elements within a track together
  • and many more.

Let’s see some of the best free reverb plugins…

8.) Voxengo – OldSkoolVerb

Voxengo plugins have been my best and ready to go plugin for my music production toolbox.

OldSkoolVerbemulates the classic stereo verb algorithm and produces a crystal clear spatial image that blends well with an audio file.

This reverb tool comes bundled with various sets of parameters permitting a user to achieve different reverb styles ranging from room reverb to hall reverb to plate reverb.

“The Voxengo OldSkoolVerb is best used for a non-percussive and soft-attack sound like vocals, piano and pad sounds”.

Specification Requirement:

  • Compatible with Windows ( Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10 and later versions) and macOS (10.7 and later releases, Intel processor-based)
  • VST/AAX supports
  • Compatible with 32 and 64 bit on Windows and Mac Os
  • Supports 2 GHz dual-core or faster processor
  • 2GB RAM or higher

Download OldSkoolVerb

8.) Smart Electronix – Ambience

A friend recommended Ambience too me a few years back, and the moment I tested it, I was literally blown away.

One of my favorite features of Ambience is the hold parameter which smartly freezes the reverb tail until the button is released. You can use this for creating a reverse reverb effect, special effect and you can even automate the knobs.

Ambience is a donationware plugin. You get a nag screen with no limitation, and if you love the plugin, you can donate to the developer.’

Download: Win 32 VST / Mac OSX VST

9.) Anwida Soft – DX Reverb Light

This is the light version of the original DX Reverb. The light version contains only one simplified algorithm of the 11 available algorithms in the full version, even with the limitation, DX Reverb Light can be handy for a quick reverb effect.

Download: Win 32 VST / Win 64 VST / Mac OSX VST / Mac AU

10.) Signaldust – Abstract Chamber

I don’t know if you ever notice undesirable reverb effect when used for longer reverb sounds, it sounds frustrating some times, with Abstract Chamber you can create a longer modulated reverbs whole also maintaining a natural yet abstract spatial impression.

It only supports VST

Download Abstract Chamber

11.) TAL-Reverb III

TAL-Reverb 3 is designed to be used as a stereo plate plug-in, which is the replacement of its predecessor (TAL-Reverb-II). This new edition has several improvements such as an optimized GUI and some changes in the reverb algorithm.

Additionally, TAL-Reverb 3 has a simple EQ section, a meter display and shows actual slider values.

Features:

  • Plate reverb sound.
  • One simple room size control.
  • Pre-delay up to one second.
  • EQ section (12dB cut, low shelf filter at 1000Hz, high shelf filter at 200Hz).
  • Stereo width control (from full stereo to mono).
  • Stereo input mode (mono or stereo input).
  • Displays the slider value of the active fader.
  • A meter shows the output volume.
  • 10 factory presets.

Specification Requirements:

  • Windows: Windows XP or higher (32 / 64 bit)
  • OSX: OSX 10.7 or higher (32 / 64 bit).
  • AAX: Pro Tools 10.3.6 or higher

Download: Windows / Mac

Delay Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin

Delay is an audio effect that records an input audio signal to a medium and then plays it back after a period of time or after the time you specify.

Some of the free delay plugins are…

12.) Proximity

Proximity is easy to use delay plugin based on several psycho-acoustic models. The idea is to give mixing engineers a reliable tool for manipulating the depth of several sound sources in a straight forward and convincing manner.

It is available in both 32 and 64-bits versions for Windows and Mac OS X in VST & AU format.

Download: Windows / Mac

13.) Adam Monroe’s Delay

Adam Monroe’s Delay is a free delay VST/AU/ AAX plugin. It features traditional delay parameters such as time and feedback, as well as high/low-pass filtering and synchronized ping-pong panning.

It supports both 32 and 64-bit version:

Download: Win VST / Win AAX / Mac VST / Mac AU

EQ Free VST/AU/AAX Plugin

14.) TAL-USE

TAL-USE (Ultra Simple Eq) is especially designed after some tilt eq’s from the ’70s.

This type of eq allows adjusting the audio material without changing the character of a sound to much.

It’s an easy way, to make an audio signal sound darker or brighter with only one knob. The bass lift knob is a special addition that boosts or attenuates bass frequencies below 300Hz.

Requirements:

  • Windows XP or higher (32 / 64 bit)
  • OSX 10.6 and < 10.10 (32 bit Host).

Download: Win 32 VST / OSX 32 VST / OSX 32 AU

I Would Keep Updating This Page…

Useful Related posts:

These days, most DAWs come with a host of built-in free VST plugins. These are generally designed to give you a good set of starting tools to make the most of your DAW. However, most DAW designers are very good at building DAWs and not as good at building VSTs. Whilst there are always a few stand out tools that every DAW user couldn’t live without, it’s quite common to find a large array of third-party plugins in professional studios. I know myself that over 95% of the plugins I use on a regular basis are third-party.Now I’m sure you’re thinking that it’s all good and well having third-party VSTs if you’ve got the money. This is where I step in. Today we’re going to take a look at 13 free VST plugins for windows that give the high-end gear a serious run for their money.

Free VST Reverbs

First off, let’s take a look at reverbs. This is probably one of the most abundant freeware plugin types on the market. However, there are some real duds out there. I’ve got two great bits of kit here that will really help bring some depth to your mixes.

epicVerb by Variety of Sound

The first of these is epicVerb. Designed for maximum flexibility, this algorithmic reverb does it all. From small, ambient spaces to luscious halls, you’ve got full control. With a built-in EQ and modulation controls, there aren’t many spaces you can’t recreate with this thing.

RoomMachine 844 by Silverspike

Another interesting reverb plugin is RoomMachine 844. This plugin appears to be modeled on a convolution premise in that it is designed to simulate speakers and microphones in a real space. However, as they are digital, we can assume it is still using algorithms to do the calculations and not impulse responses. However, it still has a unique premise. You are able to use the positions section to place to virtual loudspeakers and then dictate their stereo width and distance from the microphones. This lets you simulate real spaces that suit what you are trying to achieve. The controls are simple and you certainly won’t get as many unique tones out of this one but it’s still a fantastic free VST.

Time for Some EQ

There are a variety of different EQs types out there and every DAW comes with at least. This is typically a standard parametric EQ with fairly limited capabilities. As such, I can imagine that you might be wanting of a few more choices when using EQ.

Luftikus by IJKB

Some of my favourite EQs to work on are also some of the simplest ones you can get. I’ve always loved mixing with hardware EQ and really using my ears to sculpt the tone of my signals. As such, fixed band EQs whilst limiting, give me fantastic results. Unlike parametric EQs, you have to work with the fixed bands and as such, be far more careful with your choices. Using your ears, you make minor adjustments and keep things musical, not clinical.Now, unfortunately, these types of EQs usually come at a cost. They are typically emulations of famous hardware and as such, yield similar prices. I’m talking about things like APIs and Pultecs. That was until I came across Luftikus.This multi-band fixed EQ comes with four half octave bells, one half octave high shelf and another high shelf with adjustable fixed frequency points. It’s generally very gentle and you will have to really crank the knobs to get it to do much. However, this is kind of what makes it great. It’s one of those tools that’s handy when you’re trying to be subtle, especially with subtractive EQ. Bus EQing and master channel EQing come to mind here.It also has three switches built into the bottom. One enables ‘mastering’ mode. This changes the EQ knobs from being adjustable by 0.1dB to being adjustable by 1dB. This means that each step on the knob will have a significantly more noticeable effect as it jumps. Very handy for final adjustments and mastering. We’ve also got an ‘analogue’ switch to emulate an analogue sound. Finally, there is a ‘keep gain’ switch designed to adjust the overall level of the signal as you make changes. This is really handy when you need to A/B the plugin.

Electri-Q (posihfopit edition) by Aixcoustic Creations

Now, if you’re more in the market for control over your EQ, you might like what I have next.

Best Free Compressor Vst 64 Bit

Electri-Q (posihfopit edition)is a powerful, low phase parametric EQ with the capability to handle up to 64 bands. It also comes with a variety of filter types and the ability to switch between clean digital EQ and transformer modeled analogue EQ that’s a touch more colourful.Whilst most DAWS typically offer their own parametric EQ, this offers you a little bit more. With it’s added controls, expanded band allowance, and low phase calculations, it becomes a powerful tool for mixing and mastering. It’s not the prettiest of things to look at but then who really cares?

The Best Free Compressor VSTs

Compression is always a tricky one for beginners. Just like with EQ, most DAWs only come with one standard compressor that often has a one glove fits all approach. For anyone who understands compression, you’ll know that no single compressor is perfect for everything. Below are a couple of really great tools that I guarantee will operate far better than any built-in DAW compressor.

MJUC JR by Klanghelm

In a previous article, I addressed the different circuit types that you can typically find in compressors. One of the lesser knowns of these is the Vari-Mu. Often used in mastering, Vari-Mu (or variable-gain) is a tube based compression type. The original design is owned and trademarked by Manley and costs so much, you’d need to remortgage your studio. However, there are plenty of software alternatives out there. Obviously, these don’t use tubes so you’re not going to get that true vari-mu sound. However, the concept for the compression type holds true and there are even free versions on the market.The MJUC JR by Klanghelm is a great example of this. It has a simple and straightforward design just like a vari-mu should. We get one knob for the amount of compression and another for makeup gain. We also have a control for the recovery time and slew rate giving us control over different content types. Stacked up against the Waves Puigchild this thing performs pretty well. It works great as a glue compressor, however, I find it a little over aggressive for the circuit type.

Molot by vladg/sound

Another great compression plugin to have to hand is Molot. On the surface, this looks like a fairly typical optical compressor. However, once you chuck onto a channel it really comes into its own. This thing is far from transparent and offers a staggering amount of power. You’ve got the addition of a high-pass filter as well a limiter, mid scoop bell EQ, and multiple stereo image modes. For me, this is reminiscent of the Fairchild in its design but more like an 1176 in its sound. It’s something you’ll probably have to learn to use and then only implement when you know you need it. But when you need it, it’ll work wonders!Having a variety of compressors in your arsenal is imperative. Knowing how and when to use them is even more important still. Many DAWs come with one stock ‘one glove fits all’ compressor which is really no help. Grab these great free VST plugins to make sure you’ve got choices in your tool belt.

Moving on to Mastering Tools

Besides the typical things such as EQ and compression, mastering tends to deal with the subject of width and loudness. Here a few freebies that can help get your tracks into that commercial realm without costing you a penny.

YouLean Loudness Meter

Being able to measure loudness and dynamic range accurately is one of the most important things a mastering engineer has to do. You can easily pay hundreds on histogram tools with fully customizable features. Or, you can grab the Youlean Loudness Meterfor absolutely nothing.A truly marvellous tool that does everything that you need a LUFS loudness meter to do. Easy to understand short-term and integrated loudness metering with a dynamic range readout and a true peak detector. It also provides measurements in mono and stereo and has a detailed and adjustable histogram. Seriously, you couldn’t ask for much more out of something like this, especially when it’s completely free.If you don’t already have some form of loudness metering software, this is a great place to start. I routinely chuck this on my master channel even when I’m doing production or mixing work. It’s a really easy way to make sure you’re not clipping and a fabulous tool for identifying dynamic contrast in your work. Equally, it’s very handy when it comes to examining reference tracks. If you’re one for commercial loudness and being competitive in the market, this plugin is going to set your mind at ease in a heartbeat.

TT Dynamic Range Meter

Another great little tool to grab is the TT Dynamic Range Meter.
Far simpler than the loudness meter above but it does a great job at measuring dynamic range and peak levels. For a low CPU quick mix checker, it’s definitely worth having. Especially before sending your material off for mastering.

Ozone Imager by Izotope

Another notable mention for freebies is the Ozone Imager. A slightly simpler version of the one that comes with the paid suite, this little gem is a great mastering tool for stereo width. It’s not something that I’m a huge advocate of because of the phase issues that these things can cause. However, used subtly for a little bit of separation, it can yield great results. It has a beautiful, simple design with a fader for width and another for the amount of stereoization. The vectorscope is a lovely thing to watch and really easily helps to show you exactly what’s going on under the hood. Grab this while it’s going free and get to work on widening your mixes. Just remember to check the mono mix afterward!

A Great Set of Free VST Plugins for Beginners

Now this tenth plugin is a little more than just a single tool. As I mentioned early on, many DAWs come with plenty of built-in tools. However, sometimes they are a little lacking or you’re simply missing a few of the essentials. If this sounds like the problem you’re having, I suggest you check out Dead Duck Software.With a plain but appealing GUI, Dead Duck provides 24 free VST plugins for all your production and mixing needs. From a full channel strip to a ring modulator, this plugin bundle encompasses a really great set of tools. You’ve probably got alternatives for a lot of them already but where you don’t, they make a really strong addition. The simple design makes them great for beginners and they won’t let you down in what they can do.Even if you’re thinking that you’ve got all the basic tools already, there is one real stand out here. The Utility plugin. This is something that lives on my master bus by default nowadays. Being able to quickly flick between your stereo, mono, and mid/side mix is super helpful. Also, it’s great for checking out the separate sides of your mix independently as well as their phase. Do yourself a favour and have a play around with some of these. I’m certain you’ll find something worth keeping in your toolbox.

A Few Additional Mentions in the Free VST World

Amongst the typical tools listed above, there are also a variety of specialist tools that can come in handy in certain situations. The ones I’ve sourced below for you are particularly useful because they aren’t commonly available in the typical DAW.

Vinyl by Izotope

The first of these is a plugin by the name of Vinyl. Known as “The Ultimate Lo-fi Weapon”, Vinyl is a multi-parameter plugin designed to simulate the grit and noise of old analogue formats. This is one of those plugins that you can strap onto your master channel and use to dial in a bit of noise and ambience. It’s designed to give your tracks a little bit of character and edge. Now, this won’t be for everyone. I know plenty of people love a clean, modern sound and are thankful that gear has moved on from the noisy old bits of kit we had to use before. However, if you’re all about a bit of retro and lo-fidelity, then you are going to love this free plugin.You’ve got controls for mechanical noise, electrical noise, dust, scratch, and warp. Not only this but you can dial in the amounts of each that you want as well as adjusting the whole plugin to replicate a different part of history. From the 1930’s to the 2000’s, Vinyl is capable of emulating an incredibly authentic sound for any genre at its high point. This is going to be especially great for those of you looking to get a really gritty 90s sound.

Bark of Dog by Boz Digital Labs

One of the most common things I find I have to do when mixing and mastering my client’s works is dealing with the low end. I’m often met with comments like “the tracking went well but we couldn’t get much low end from the kick“. Learning to position microphones and get the sound you want is a skill in itself. As much as it’s good to get it right at the time, some things can be improved in the mixing stage. Enter bass enhancement plugins.As a big fan of Waves, I’ve always opted for using things like Renaissance bass for my low-end reinforcement. However, I was recently let on to a free VST plugin by the name of Bark of Dogthat does the exact same thing that my Waves plugin can do. Naturally, I was curious to see whether a free plugin could keep up with the likes of Waves.Whilst the GUI isn’t as pleasing to the eye, the plugins actually have an almost identical setup. Frequency selection, input gain, and output gain. Where the Bark of Dog plugin has an edge is that it also allows you to control the wet/dry mix of the plugin. I see this as fairly redundant as I typically just dial in the amount of gain that I want. If I need less, I’ll dial less in as opposed to varying the wet/dry. However, it’s still an extra tool that Waves doesn’t provide.In use, these plugins perform at an exceptionally parallel level. There are very minute tonal differences between the two but I found that the Waves plugin was slightly better at dealing with sonically dense tracks. However, for a free plugin, Bark of Dog is 100% worth downloading if you’re working on a budget. Try it out on full mixes and on individual channels and I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at what it can do.

CamelCrusher by Camelaudio

For those of us mixing in the box, distortion and saturation plugins have always been a tricky one. If you’re lucky enough to have some decent outboard then you’re probably alright. Unfortunately, those of us working in the digital realm haven’t got as many options. This is even truer when it comes to free VST plugins. However, there is one that’s always served me well in a pinch. CamelCrusher not only offers fantastic distortion tones but it comes with a handy filter and compressor section to help you sculpt the results.Offering tube distortion as well as mechanical distortion, CamelCrusher gives you multiple tone options for no money. The low pass filter isn’t anything special. It’s another great way to control your distortion without the need for further plugins. Again, the compressor is pretty simple and applies some soft-limiting to smooth out dynamic range. The phat mode button essentially applies smoother results. I find that it seems to almost always work better when turned on. I wouldn’t use this compressor as a first choice but it’s a handy little tool for smoothing out the effects of the distortion if it’s a bit too aggressive.

TL;DR

There is a multitude of free VST plugins out there that really are worth having. More so than that, some of them can honestly compete with the big names like Waves and Slate. This list doesn’t encompass everything out there but it’s a good place to start. To summarise we’ve got: epicVerb and RoomMachine844 reverbs; Lufitkus fixed EQ and Electri-Q low phase parametric EQ; Klanghelms MJUC JR vari-mu compressor and vladgs Molot; The Youlean Loudness Meter, TT Dynamic Range meter, and Izotopes Ozone Imager; the entire DeadDuck VST package; and Izotope Vinyl, Bark of Dog, and CamelCrusher. So, what are you waiting for? Go get downloading and start to have a play around!PreviousBestStereo Microphone Techniques: 5 Ways to Record in Stereo
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