VST and AudioUnits (AU) are the two native plugin formats for Mac OS X. Although there are other DAW specific formats for plugins, VST and AudioUnits are more common and compatible across various DAWs like Cubase, Logic, etc. There is an abundance of VST and AU plugins for expanding your DAW and building your collection of effects.
The best VST plug-in software are used by most popular and successful music producers of today. Unlike in the past when all types of music is created with real instruments – an actual set of drums, piano, guitars, etc. in the studio – today, many records are created from fully digital instruments using a plug-in software.
What is the Best VST Plug-in Software?
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VST plug-in software is a software interface that may be used by your MIDI controller to create music through a set of effects, sounds and editors. VST means Virtual Studio Technology. MIDI controllers basically look like keyboards, except that most of these do not contain sound, rather, it is only a controller that you can use to manipulate sounds and effects coming from another program – the best VST plug-in software. So your controllers are essentially useless without this software and to ensure that you have more ways to be creative and you have a larger variation of music to make, you need a good kind of VST plug-in software.
Know the Difference: Best VST Plug-in Software vs. Synthesizers
The main difference between a VST plug-in software and a synthesizer is quite obvious: a VST plug-in software is a software, a ton of sounds and effects with editors installed in your computer that you can control and play around with using MIDI controllers. A synthesizer is an actual piece of hardware that can produce “real sounds”. While the more natural effect a synthesizer can provide when making a record is something that many producers and music enthusiasts prefer, there are much more who rely on VST plug-in software to make music. When listening to some tracks made purely with the best VST plug-in software, you can’t even tell that all sounds are digital, while some, of course, are easy to point out.
The VST Plug-in Software Advantage
Believe it or not, there are many successful music producers of today who don’t even know how to play the real piano, or a guitar or even drums. It’s quite amusing how the word “real” needs to be used quite often across music production simply because there are so many digital sounds (and even human singing voices) that you can manipulate to make it seem like an actual instrument is being used.
The advantage of finding the best VST plug-in software is that a good one will contain all the sounds you’ll ever need to make a ton of unique records simply with the use of your MIDI controller and your computer. While you may need to spend money on this software, you can save a lot when it comes to having actual instruments in the studio. You don’t need a grand piano, or a full drum set, etc. – all these sounds can be created realistically from your VST plug-in software. Aside from the money, you are also saving a lot of working and moving space in your studio which is best for smaller areas such as in home recording studios.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Your VST Plug-in Software
There are a lot of choices when it comes to the best VST plug-in software in the market today and you can definitely find what’s suitable for you no matter what your budget range is. In fact, other websites would even run down top 20’s and top 50’s but this one aims to narrow down your choices to only the industry’s best by coming up with a top 10. Before getting to that part, it is best to know the considerations you have to make so that you can choose the most ideal software for your studio.
- Bundle/Collection or Specialized Software
You first have to determine what you need from the VST plug-in software. Are you interested in getting a collection of different software or a large program that already includes gigabytes’ worth of sounds and effects for all music genres? For instance, the Komplete 10 from Native Instrument already includes just about all sounds you would need; however, if you need an entire plug-in software just for drums then you should get the Toontrack Superior Drummer in addition to what you currently have. If you’re interested in creating classical music, then the MiroslavPhilharmonik would probably be a better choice.
- Your Computer’s Capacity, Compatibility, etc.
Do Vst Plugins Work For Mac
The Native Instrument Komplete 10 is probably one of the best you’ll find out there when it comes to the best VST plug-in software and it contains up to 130GB worth of sounds and effects. If you have a Macbook Pro or Air with 128GB or 256GB memory, you cannot maximize what you’re getting out of the software. With larger and heavier software such as the SpectrasonicsTrilian, 4GB of RAM memory probably won’t be enough so you need at least 6 or 8GB to prevent your computer from crashing.
Furthermore, you have to check the compatibility of the VST plug-in software to your computer. While many of these software would work on both Mac and Windows computers, some would just work on one. Check as well the compatibility of your MIDI keyboards and controllers.
Lastly, find out whether you can get an actual CD or DVD for download or whether you will be downloading the software from the web. Large files to be downloaded will definitely kill your data allowance if you’re not on an unlimited plan, not to mention it might take a while for you to download.
- Instruments, Samples, Sounds, etc.
As mentioned above, you can find the best VST plug-in software such as the Native Instrument Komplete 10 with 130GB worth of sounds and effects. While this is good, you may not exactly need everything that it offers, though having those extra sounds for future use should do you no harm. Usually, these software includes a number of instruments, thousands of sounds and samples and effects. The more, the better, but you should also check on what you actually require.
It is probably not a concern for everybody but it would be good if the interface and the program itself is very easy to operate and navigate. Imagine how difficult it would be to browse on thousands and gigabytes’ worth of sounds and samples when you’re only searching for one. Nevertheless, if you try out a VST plug-in software today and it may be too complex for you, if you work on it as often as you can, you will surely get used to it in no time.
1. Native Instrument Komplete 10
2. Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0
3. FL Studio Producer Edition 11
4. Arturia V Collection 4
5. Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2
6. Steinberg Absolute Vsti Collection
7. IK Multimedia Miroslav Philharmonik Orchestra and Choir Workstation
8. Spectrasonics Trilian Bass Module Software
9. IK Multimedia Total Studio 3 Bundle
10. Roxio Easy Media Creator Deluxe Suite 10
Hands-down, the Native Instrument Komplete 10 is arguably the best VST plug-in software and this is probably not the first time you’ll be seeing this software title on top of list like this. This software is worth your investment and is probably everything that you will ever need. If your budget won’t allow it, then you can settle for the Native Instrument Komplete 10 Crossgrade for now, or if you don’t mind spending a bit more, then you can choose the Native Instrument Komplete 10 Ultimate version. No worries though because if you buy the Native Instrument Komplete 10 right now, you can still upgrade later on when budget allows it.
Moving forward to the more important things you need to know about the Native Instrument Komplete 10. An industry-standard bundle, you get a wide range of Komplete instruments – 39 products in total which are made up of effects and instruments. You also get more than 12,000 samples from drums to grand pianos and more. Everything you get out of this software comes up to 130 GB worth of valuable sounds and instruments.
The Native Instrument Komplete 10 is ready for use with DAW you prefer. It works on both Mac and Windows computers. While it is optimized for the KompleteKontrol S-Series, you can practically use any MIDI keyboard or controller of your choice. Using Maschine with the Native Instrument Komplete 10 comes pretty easy too.
There’s no wonder why the Native Instrument Komplete 10is highly reviewed by so many customers, professional critics and producers as well – it lives up to its tagline. It is indeed your complete instruments and effects collection.
Definitely one of the best when it comes to virtual drumkit software, the Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0 is the most recent version of the Superior Drummer you can find. If you’re used to or have used EZdrummer before then this software will somehow be easy for you to understand as the interface is quite similar. While some producers may find this software more complicated at first, once you get used to it, you’ll never want to work with something else. The samples you will find on the Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0 were recorded by three of the best musicians and producers of the recent times – Nir Z, Neil Dorfsman and Pat Thrall who have all worked with some of the music industry’s biggest names including Sting, Paul McCartney, Celine Dio, Bruce Springsteen, Beyonce, John Mayer and a whole lot more. Furthermore, the Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0 was outfitted by Sonalksis, a premium software developer based in UK, with transient designer filters, compressor, gate, high and low pass filter and a 5-band EQ.
It is hard not to love the Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0 best VST plug-in software as it does so well when it comes to attention to detail and sound quality. You may have used different drumkit software in the past, but as some of its many satisfied users would say, you just won’t find anything that comes close to what this software can offer. No bugs, no issues with practically any other audio equipment you will be using with it. It works on both Mac and Windows computers too. You are getting every single penny’s worth with the Toontrack Superior Drummer 2.0.
When you’re on a tight budget, you can still enjoy working with one of the best VST plug-in software without sacrificing the quality of the records or music you can make. The FL Studio Producer Edition 11 is more than just a VST plug-in software, it is already a complete music production software. In fact, this is the software of choice by many successful producers who aren’t even trying to cut down on costs simply because it is efficient, effective and it lets them do their job well. Use the FL Studio Producer Edition 11 for mixing professional quality music, sequencing, composing and a whole more.
The FL Studio Producer Edition 11 takes pride in its ability to make your workflow a lot easier and seamless. It works on Image-Line’s Piano Roll, Step Sequence, advanced Mixer with Auto-PDC and Playlist arranger. You can work according to your preference so you can definitely work quicker and more conveniently. When it comes to your VST plug-in software needs, you can create side-chain effects, sub-mixes and even the most complex mixes you can ever come up with. Furthermore, your purchase of the FL Studio Producer Edition 11 comes with free updates for a lifetime. This software is the probably the most practical choice you can make.
Currently, the FL Studio Producer Edition 11 only works on Windows computers so its only drawback is that you won’t be able to use this with a Mac. Despite that bit of shortcoming, it still has earned the praises and high reviews of critics, producers and many users over the years.
The Arturia V Collection 4 is a fairly new product compared to the many others that have already come out in the recent years and it is currently making waves and getting raves from many producers and music editors. You already get 13 software titles from this instrument bundle including Matrix-12 V, Spark2, Solina V, VOX Continental V, Mini V, Modular V, CS-80V, ARP2600 V, Prophet V & Prophet VS, Jupiter 8-V, Oberheim SEM V, Wurlitzer V and the Analog Lab. Compatible with most major DAWs, you can use all virtual instruments you can find from the Arturia V Collection 4 as a plug-in or as a standalone application.
Will Vst Plugins Work On A Mac
The Arturia V Collection 4 is very simple and easy to use. You don’t need any e-licensers or dongles as you can easily manage all licenses through its new ASC software. This best VST plug-in software gives you the ability to work at up to 32bit/96kHz which is already the industry’s standards for professional quality audio. Furthermore, it allows very simple MIDI mapping using any keyboard controller. What’s even more impressive though is that at its price, you can use this for both Mac and Windows computers.
It has already gained a decent amount of high reviews and ratings from customers who tried out the Arturia V Collection 4. With so many software titles to choose from at such a low price, you are truly getting the value for your money. Easy for the entry-level producers and useful for the pros, the Arturia V Collection 4 is definitely worth the try.
Another fairly new software that’s making its rounds among professional producers is the SpectrasonicsOmnisphere 2. Very impressive though because it has so far gotten an average of 4.8 out of 5 stars of ratings from customers and plenty of other positive reviews from critics. For a price that’s very affordable, it might give you second thoughts on whether you should risk your money on a new product; however, with what Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2 can offer, you know that you are getting every single penny’s worth of the money you spend; not to mention that its earlier version has also gained tremendous amounts of perfect reviews so you can only expect this one to be a whole lot better.
One of the improvements you will find on the Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2 is that it not includes over 12,000 different sounds that you can use for your music production needs. Browsing and zooming into deeper and richer synthesis levels is not also easier with its new interface. So many new creative tools including the Granular Synthesis, Inner Space and the Harmonia are now ready for use as well. You can even use your own audio files as a sound source through the Omnisphere’s audio import feature. Furthermore, you are getting 58 fully integrated FX units that can be modulated. You can get all these and more from just one software that you can use for as long as you like. There’s even no wonder anymore that Spectrasonics Omnisphere 2 is slowly but surely becoming the best VST plug-in software in the market today.
You can get this much value of instruments, effects and more from the Steinberg Absolute VST Instrument Collection for a very affordable price. It allows you to work on 32/64-bit on both Mac and Windows computers and it is compatible with VST 3, VST 3 and AU hosts. The Steinberg USB e-Licenses is also already included in the package.
What stands out about the Steinberg Absolute VST Collection is the ease of use it offers. Though it will be much enjoyed by professional music producers, it is also ideal for beginners and amateurs. You won’t have a difficult time creating new beats and records with the Steinberg Absolute VST Collection as its interface is very easy to understand and learn. It comes with 6 high quality VST instruments that you can experiment with as it is comprised with thousands of presets. Whether you’re creating hip-hop, pop, rock, dubstep, house music and more, you can absolutely make great records with the Steinberg Absolute VST Collection.
The main VST workstation you can work with in this collection is the HALion Sonic which would do great not only in the studio but also on stage. You can also enjoy synthesizer power with Retrologue and Padshop Pro including Zero Gravity. As supplementary expansions for an even better music making experience with the best selection of various VST instruments, you can use Hypnotic Dance, Triebwerk and Dark Planet. For its price, you are absolutely getting more than your money’s worth with the Steinberg Absolute VST Collection.
If you’re into making classical music, you must have realized by now that always getting a group of people to play in an orchestra together is rather challenging and even expensive. Trying to play all instruments by yourself is somewhat very difficult too. Who would have thought that one day, classical music will also go digital too? And it’s not just about having these as MP3 files but the actual creation and composition of the orchestral and choir music can be made digitally. If this is the type of music you’re into, the best VST plug-in software you can use is the Miroslav Philharmonik.
Do Vst Plug-ins Work On Mac
With samples and instruments recorded by the Czech Philharmonik Orchestra through the legendary MiroslavVitous at the Dvorák Symphony Hall, you know for sure already that the MiroslavPhilharmonik is purely just superior quality. It features strings, brass and winds recorded in all the best and proper positions acoustically with a wide range of articulations.
The software includes 7GB worth of sounds in its library, a 16-part mutli-timbral sample-based orchestral workstation, 20 classic DSP effects and more. There are 4 insert effects for every instrument and you also get separate sends from 4 master effects and high quality master reverb from CSR. Use this as a VST plug-in or standalone software and you will also love how user-friendly this software is through its classical music-oriented parameter names.
Compatible on Mac and Windows computers as a DXi or AU plug-in, you can get the Miroslav Philharmonik.
8. Spectrasonics Trilian Bass Module Software
If you’re all about that bass and this feature is just so important to you, then you should, by all means, get the SpectrasonicsTrilian Bass Module Software. No questions asked, hands-down, according to numerous reviews from critics and professional producers over the years, this is the best bass module you will find in the market today. In fact, over the years, it has gained an average of 4.8 out of 5 stars from online customers alone. If you’re looking for something that will exceed your expectations with the most realistic sounding bass instruments, this is the best VST plug-in software you are looking for. It features acoustic and electric basses and super impressive synth bass tones, it is really more than you’ll ever need from a software. Its predecessor, the Trilogy, is an award-winning Spectrasonics bass software and if that has already impressed you, then this will be even more impressive.
You can get all the new electric, acoustic and synth basses from the SpectrasonicsTrilian Bass Module Software’s 34GB library which is 10 times bigger than the Trilogy’s library. Even more impressive is that the next-generation STEAM Engine technology gives that extra power for the Trilian. Even the most detailed producer who is very hard to please will be pleasantly surprised with all the bass power that SpectrasonicsTrilian Bass Module Software can provide. Definitely a bargain considering what it can offer and you’d be hard-pressed to find anything that comes close.
By now, you must have already realized that getting a bundle or collection of the best VST plug-in software is a very practical choice especially if there’s a variety of types of music that you make. The IK Multimedia Total Studio 3 Bundle is one of those worth-it collections as it already has a ton of instruments and effects that will get you through endless hours of experimenting on beats and records in the studio. It features 5 virtual instruments, 15 sound libraries and 3 effects suites, a total of 8 award-winning plug-ins – more than enough for you to create unique music for years! It is even better because IK Multimedia Total Studio 3 Bundle.
You can work with outstanding orchestral, vintage keyboard, sound and synth workstations on the IK Multimedia Total Studio 3 Bundle including the Sample Tank 2.5 XL, Sonik Synth 2, Miroslav Philharmonic, SampleTron andSampleMoog. You also get 15 out of the 30 sound libraries featured on the Xpansion Tank 2 series from Sonic Reality, an industry leader in FX and guitar amp software. Furthermore, you get access to the critically acclaimed mixing and mastering software, the AmpliTube 3. And you also have the T-Racks 3 Deluxe and the Classik Studio Reverb. There’s no doubt about it, you can experiment and be as creative as you can as you make musical scores for movies or TV and drop hits with all the features that the IK Multimedia Total Studio 3 Bundle can offer.
The Roxio Easy Media Creator Deluxe Suite 10 is definitely more than just a VST plug-in software as it includes features that are nowhere to be found in any of the products you can see above. What’s even better is that the Roxio Easy Media Creator Deluxe Suite 10 sells at an affordable price range which makes it perfect for beginners and entry-level producers. It is worth mentioning though that this may not work for all music professionals as it can only offer so much in VST plug-ins because it is packed with other features more than that.
Moving forward, if you’re an amateur or a beginner, you will love how it easy it is to operate the Roxio Easy Media Creator Deluxe Suite 10. You probably won’t need it but in case, you will find video tutorials for this along with the software that leads you through the step-by-step processes. This creates more than just music as it can also edit and enhance photos and edit videos. Its Music Disc Creator feature allows you create music with DJ-style fades, mixtapes (CD’s) and a whole lot more.
It is important to stress the fact that the Roxio Easy Media Creator Deluxe Suite 10, while packed with way too many features than what you could expect, is made for the beginner or entry-level producer. This is one way for you to learn the craft in an easier just “drag and drop” way before introducing yourself to more complex VST plug-in software.
FL Studio is a great workstation for the digital audio allowing the person to develop a brilliant audio content through the help of this workstation. Image-Line is the company which formulated the digital audio workstation having a pattern based music equalizer and sequencer, the features of it has made it one of most accessed digital audio workstation in the world. People can use the workstation for creating the audio content on their system whether being Windows or Mac for free of cost making them to avoid any sort of issues. FL Studio works with collaboration with Virtual Studio Technology (VST) aiding it to add new variations with the plug-ins present in VST. There are various VST plugins for FL Studio to make the use of the workstation easy and comfortable; we have listed top ten among the several.
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Top 10 Must Have VST Plugins for FL Studio:
Sylenth1 is also known as Sylenth is a VST plug-in offering the FL Studio user to use it as digital fluctuate for adding various sounds and effects to the audio for making it different. With this you can produce a sound and music having the superior quality and feel while listening to it.
A good VST is always needed to create and produce a sound or music having the uppermost quality for making it to be liked by others. Massive is VST plug-in on which you can depend it acts as a sonic monster giving you cutting edge feature to add in your audio creation skills.
Sausage Fattener is a popular VST plug-in used by various music artists like Tiesto, Like Mike and many more for the features and performance offered by the plug-in to them making them efficient to compose a great audio. Sausage Fattener is developed by Dada Life to provide the composers a great tool for composing.
It is widely popular for the effects influencing the hip-hop producers/composers, having a nice user friendly interface making many people to use it to do their work in simpler and easy way. The quality of the sound is good when you use this for composing and editing the sound/audio produced with it.
FabFilter Pro Q-2:
FabFilter Pro Q-2 is a brilliant equalizer providing you to mix and conquer in producing a gorgeous, pioneer audio. The plug-in has various features making the composer to have the tool in creating the highest sound quality possible in different sizes and see clear through the full screen mode.
FabFilter Pro C:
During creating the audio the composer has to maintain the level of compression in order to make it good while hearing. FabFilter Pro C helps the person to manage the compression easily with the help of good compression displays to see the amount of compression applied to the audio signal.
Soundgoodizer is a great stereo maximize increaser formulated on the basis of Maximus soundprocess engine to make the user to have best plug-in to create sound and music through it.
It is a good VST plug-in allowing the composer to have a tool to mix and create audio on FL Studio. dBlue Glitch aids the user to experiment with the audio and create a variation of the original one.
KarmaFX is a popular audio virtual instrument through it the person can improve the efficiency and quality of audio/music to feel good while hearing to it and have a great composition in hands through it.
True Piano helps the person to include various multiple enhancements with the plug-in and make an audio through the tool with the help of the creativity present in the person.