Free VST Instruments

Free VST Instruments

Use the free VST instruments listed on our directory and turn your DAW into an amazing source of sounds. Loads of free synthesizers, ROMplers, samplers – amazing tools to unleash your creativity.

On this page, we gathered only the best free virtual instruments from trustworthy developers. Some of them rival the commercial ones in both versatility and sound quality. Check the main sections or scroll down for a selection of the 10 best free VST instruments that any producer (beginner or advanced) should have.

If you’re looking for free effect plugins, visit this page instead.

Free VST Instruments Subcategories

The synthesizers are the most popular VST instruments and can emulate classic or modern synths or come up with their own architecture. Often called softsynths, they can be based on different types of synthesis: subtractive, additive, FM, and wavetable.

ROMplers are another type of instrument VSTs; they are usually based on samples recorded from real-world instruments and mostly come packed with big sound libraries. Let’s say you need real-sounding strings in your compositions. The quickest and cheapest solution would be to load a virtual string instrument and focus on building your melody.

As the name suggests, the samplers can load samples. You can edit the samples inside the software, apply effects, plus you can create patches for further use. Same as the ROMpler, this kind of virtual instrument loads in a segment of audio and plays it at the desired musical pitch. The difference is the sampler doesn’t have a factory library.

10 Best Free VST Instruments Any Producer Should Have

We compiled a list of 10 of the best free VST instruments that all producers should add to their library. We primarily talk here about producers on a tight budget, but to be honest, some of these are so good that would be a great addition even for producers with an extensive library of commercial plugins.

Use the Table of Contents to jump straight to what you need, or scroll down and get them all.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Komplete Start

Komplete Start - one of the best free VST instruments

This suite of free VST instruments is really the best starter tool kit for any aspiring producer. This production weapon stands out by its 16 pro-grade synths and sampled instruments, effects, but also loops and samples. It includes over 2,000 customizable sounds, such as drums and percussion, basses, acoustic instruments, synths, pads and atmospheres, effects, etc.

Komplete Start will introduce you to Native Instruments’ Kontakt and Reaktor (the Player versions), both coming with a vast free library, plus it contains Supercharger, a compressor plugin that I love, plus around 1,500 loops and samples compiled from a diverse range of their most popular Expansions.

In order to download it, an account at Native Instruments is required, also you need to install their Native Access software from where you will authorize the content.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3, AAX), macOS (AU, VST, VST3, AAX)

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BBC Symphony Orchestra Discover

BBC Symphony Orchestra Discover

Meet BBC Symphony Orchestra Discover, a sweet free VST plugin that simply puts at your disposal 33 orchestral instruments performed by the famous British orchestra based in London. You have anything for your orchestral needs including instruments from the categories of strings, brasses, woodwinds, and percussion.

BBC Symphony Orchestra Discover was originally €49, but you can get it for free when you complete a short survey at Spitfire Audio.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3, AAX), macOS (AU, VST, VST3, AAX)

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Vital Basic

Vital Free Wavetable Synthesizer Plugin

Vital is the newest in the popular and expanding world of wavetable virtual synthesizers. Vital is labeled as “Spectral Warping Wavetable Synth” and sports a modern interface and that includes many interesting features for all sound geeks. With its real-time animated graphical displays and drag-and-drop modulation workflow, Vital urges you to sound design.

Vital is Matt Tytel‘s child and comes in four versions: Basic (free), Plus, Pro and Subscription. All versions include Vital with all its features, the only difference being that the paid packs include more presets, wavetables, samples, and LFO patterns.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3), macOS (AU, VST, VST3)

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Piano One

Piano One Free Virtual Instrument - a classic in the world of free VST instruments

Some might say that this is the best free piano VST plugin. And I totally agree with them, especially that it features a Yamaha C7 concert grand, a true workhorse in the world of music.

Piano One is built on a solid frame – Sound Magic’s “Hybrid Modelling Engine”, managing to balance both the sound authenticity and playability. This, along with a suite of in-depth controls, bring Piano One close to a real instrument.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST), macOS (AU, VST)

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OB-Xd

OB-Xd free synth plugin

OB-Xd is based on the Oberheim OB-X, the famous analog polyphonic sound synthesizer that shaped the music of the ’80s. The plugin was designed to sound as good and as rich as the hardware but is not 100% true to the original since it adds features like automation, layering, arpeggiation, etc.

OB-Xd has no internal effects so its sounds and textures can be greatly enhanced by the use of additional processing like chorus, reverb, delay, etc.

OB-Xd is free for non-commercial use.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3, AAX), macOS (AU, VST, VST3, AAX)

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MT Power Drum Kit

MT Power Drum Kit 2 - one of the best free VST instruments for drumming

If you’re a Pop, Rock, or Metal producer on a budget, MT Power Drum Kit is the best free drum VST instrument, period. It brings the high-quality sounds of an acoustic and realistic drum kit straight to your studio. Of course, just the sound is not enough for realistic drum parts, but by mimicking the real-word playing with the use of velocity, accents, etc – you can have amazing results.

Looking for instant grooves? MT Power Drum Kit has it all: you can choose from thousands of assorted rhythms in the comprehensive library of grooves and fills. Many styles and BPMs are covered, so I am sure you’ll find the right rhythm for your track.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST), macOS (AU, VST)

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TyrellN6

TyrellN6 Free Compact Synthesizer Plugin

TyrellN6 is a small but solid virtual synthesizer reproducing the classic architecture of analog synthesizers such as Juno-60 or Minimoog. It has 2 oscillators, noise, ring modulator, 2 LFOs with 8 waveforms, and a twin filter from u-he Diva early version.

TyrellN6 has been around for a while, but it still holds up well with its convincing sound, modern look, and over 580 factory presets. Speaking of look, the GUI is skinnable and resizable.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3, AAX), macOS (AU, VST, VST3, AAX)

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LABS

Spitfire Audio LABS free virtual instrument

LABS appeared a couple of years ago and is already huge. This true creativity pool is Spitfire Audio’s VST/AU plugin platform for loading all its freeware libraries. Expect some crazy unique sound libraries sourced from orchestral instruments, synths, unusual percussion, sound mangling, and ultimately, bold creativity.

LABS is a lively project, with new releases every month. Once you register (free) at Spitfire Audio and download/install the Spitfire app, you gain access to all their free libraries. From there you can choose what you like and taste the freedom of making music.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3, AAX), macOS (AU, VST, VST3, AAX)

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Dexed

Dexed Free DX7 Virtual Synthesizer

Dexed is a free virtual instrument closely modeled on the Yamaha DX7, one of the best-selling synthesizers in history. If you’re into Synth-Pop, Retro Pop, or Synthwave, you should add this plugin to your arsenal, especially since it delivers authentic 80’s flavored sounds.

The sound engine is closely modeled on the original DX7 characteristics, also the plugin can load/save any DX7/TX7 SysEx programs. Dexed is fully flexible with its 144 DAW automatable DX7 parameters available from one single panel.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST), macOS (AU, VST)

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SampleTank 4 CS

SampleTank 4 Custom Shop

SampleTank CS is a solid name in the world of free VST instruments. And now, version 4 is bigger and stronger than ever. This sound and groove creation workstation combines all the features of SampleTank 4’s award-winning sound engine with 50 all-new instruments and 200 MIDI loops. You can create full tracks by solely using this instrument plugin – so diverse is.

SampleTank 4 CS offers all the features of the full SampleTank 4, so you can use the included sounds without limitations. A must-have for all producers looking for free “bread & butter: sounds.

Plugin formats: Windows (VST, VST3, AAX), macOS (AU, VST, VST3, AAX)

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Updated on June 28th, 2021.