Guitar Pedal VSTs 2022: A Rundown of the Most Creative +1 of them is FREE!

There are many contestants for the most creative guitar pedal VSTs of 2022. Guitar pedals are easily one of the most exciting parts of playing. The choices out there for sound designers can really bring this to life in their dizzying breadth and scope. To keep up with all the new developments in this world within one year would be impossible. Nevertheless, some of the most stand-out plugins take classic and well-known effects such as distortion and place their own innovative twist on them. Read on to find out some of the VSTs which do this best. from metal to blues, there is something for everyone!

Mercuriall Chorus WS1: One of the Best Chorus Guitar Pedal VSTs of 2022

Mercuriall Chorus WS1 has a fantastic pedigree. It’s modelled after Boss Chorus CE-2, which came from one of the world’s first chorus pedals- the Boss CE-1. CE-2 was made in Japan to celebrate its pedigree and the ingenuity of Japanese craftsmanship is evident in Mercuriall. 

The Chorus WS1 is not as detailed as some of the distortion pedals on this list in terms of operation. However, its simplicity is a great introduction to chorus effects. It contains dials for speed, depth, and mix, nothing more, nothing less. Another major thing in its favour is it’s completely free. American and British audiences may not be immediately familiar with Russian brand Mercuriall, but their gear is extremely worth checking out in general – and while the Chorus WS1 isn’t the only free plugin they have released, it is certainly great at what it does. 

Forum reviews have also shown that this pedal goes above and beyond. In fact, some users feel like it’s one of the only decent chorus pedals out there. It may not have some of the niche or unusual features as others on this list. However, it deserves an entry as it has taken a tricky-to-get-right effect and crafted masterful ways of achieving it.

Mercurial Chorus WS-1

Requirements: Works for both Windows and macOS, exact versions not listed. Works as AU and VST for Windows and AU, VST and AAX for macOS

Price: Free, to download check their website by clicking here (there are other free products available)..

The Bluesman by Audiority: A Creative Vintage Blues Overdrive Pedal

Analogue modelled simulation – ‘90s Marshall Blues Breaker made to replicate tone of 1962 Blues Breaker amp This plugin is an ‘amp in a box’ pedal. What does this mean? Well, it allows the artist an unprecedented level of control over the intricacies of tone. It’s not just a clear case of whether the pedal is on or off. This is a really nuanced pedal and the sounds shown in Aurodirty’s demonstration have fantastic realism. This nifty pedal is perfect for classic rock, blues, or even harder rock as well as spicing up pop tracks.

The Bluesman lets you control gain, tone, and level plus explore three different pedal circuits. It also includes a noise gate, and mix control. This little pedal plugin does anything an amp VST could do and does it just as well. Out of all guitar pedal VSTs of 2022, this one is without a doubt one of the most creative and refreshing. Whilst blues isn’t always looked at specifically in the general market, The Bluesman really does have everything you need.

Requirements: Windows 7 64bit or later, OSX 10.8 or later or macOS 11 or later

Price: 13 EUR or 12.93 USD. Click here to check current price on pluginboutique.com

Heavy Pedal by Audiority: Real Innovation for Heavy Guitar

From the laid-back sounds of blues, this list turns to the stormy sounds of 80s Swedish death metal. Audiority modelled Heavy Pedal after a notorious analogue stompbox which fuelled the sounds of the evolution of the Scandinavian metal scene. So why have we included Heavy Pedal on this list? Metal guitarists may find occasionally that most of the market does not serve their needs, and Heavy Pedal is valuable in filling these gaps. However, it’s a surprisingly versatile pedal in general for other genres such as thrash, punk, and industrial.

Heavy Pedal is an ultra high gain pedal – meaning things can get intense. It’s also of extremely high technical quality. The folks behind it at Audiority modelled it off a circa-1984 Japanese Boss-HM2. This model fuelled the Northern European metal scene, yet found itself popular in the land of the rising sun. With all of this combined, Heavy Pedal is truly something special. 

Heavy Pedal by Audiority

Requirements: Windows 7 64bit or later, OSX 10.8 or later or macOS 11 or later

Price: 20 EUR or 20 USD. Click here to check current price on pluginboutique.com (we get a small kickback from your purchase).

Bx_yellowdrive by Brainworx/Plugin Alliance: Perfect for Adding Tone

Why does Brainworx make this list? Firstly, the love and care which Yellowdrive use in the manufacturing process are second to none. The second reason is more hidden. Legendary pedal manufacturer Boss is responsible for a huge amount of innovation. However, most people do not know just how many VSTs take inspiration from classic Boss pedals. The bx_yellowdrive is one of these, and it’s an exacting replica. This means it has all the tone of the pedal it is based on, the Boss SD- 1.

The bx_yellowdrive is a welcome oasis in the world of software. It has a warm, rough-around-the-edges feel, which is something that partly comes from its asymmetric circuitry. Another trick it has up its sleeve is how it responds to your playing in real-time. This is really a plugin which embraces all the nuances of playing and analogue gear. Simultaneously, it brings you all the convenience of digital software. Ultimately, this is not a distortion plugin – it’s a tone plugin. It’s there to add warmth and sonic character to your playing, and in doing this it fills a real gap in the market.

Requirements: macOS 10.11-12, Windows 8-11

Price: 49 USD. Click here to check current price on pluginalliance.com

Misstortion 2 by Nimble Tools: Intro to Bit-Crushing and Clip Distortion

Nimble Tools isn’t famous within the world of pedal plugins. However, Misstortion is a really unique and fascinatingly designed bit of kit. Unlike many other products on the market, it actually explores the worlds of both bit-crushing and clip distortion. This means its sound has a gritter, somewhat more industrial edge. If you are used to playing heavier music, you may find this very welcome. It’s even useful if you want to combine your guitar playing with something more electronic. Misstortion’s interface is also really great – although it doesn’t model itself visually on any hardware pedals. Nonetheless, it has a really smooth, clean interface with all features easy to find.

In fact, the more exploration, the better Misstortion actually gets. It even has a tone filter which allows you to set the filter to the frequency of a particular note. With controls over symmetry and both soft clip and hard clip distortion, this is a real deep dive. Misstortion recognises you may want a smoother and more fine-tuned sound design than simply letting the plugin do the work. As a result, this is really one plugin to get stuck in with. 

Requirements: Available as a VST for both macOS and Windows, however, the website lists multiple variations depending on your version of the software and storage space

Price: Starts free but the website offers options to name your price.

Final Thoughts on Guitar Pedal VSTs of 2022

So there you have it! This is not an exhaustive list of all which has gone on this year for stomp box VSTs. However, it is a selection of some of the most interesting and creative. All these plugins have really been designed to add a little extra spark back into your playing. While this list focuses on distortion, we have also chosen these plugins for creativity in general, hence the inclusion of Mercuriall’s Chorus WS1 and the bx_yellowdrive. In addition, they are all great at adding tone to your riffs and licks when used in small amounts too. 

If you enjoyed this article, why not check out some of our other plugin and VST articles? Find them in our software category: https://www.idesignsound.com/software/

Best Ear Training Software 2022: A Breakdown of the Year’s Best Picks

Want to find the best ear training software of 2022? Look no further for a handy breakdown of some of the different options out there on the market, what they work best for, and how to find what suits your specific needs.

EDITOR CHOICE: trainyourears.com – BEST Starter Option

This one is simply the best because it is one of the simples and easy to comprehend piece of Ear Training software. We have extensively covered this product in a separate review, which we highly recommend as it goes in-depth. You can read our trainyourears.com review it by clicking here.

We chose this as our Editor Choice because is is the easiest and most recommended way to get into Ear Training as a first-time encounter. If this is your first attempt to use Ear Training software and have moderate musical knowledge (willing to master them fast), start by clicking here (open trainyourears.com website).

Best Ear Training Software for Focussing on Frequency: QuizTones

QuizTones is a fantastic app which comes from the folks at the Pro Audio Files. This is a website and an online course dedicated to mixing and mastering tips. The developers designed QuizTones to take the entire EQ process and turn it into a fun, intuitive, and interactive app. This allows the user to hone their skills in real-time in order and enhance their aural sensitivity.

With quizzes for tone, EQ, and more, QuizTones builds up your skills step by step. QuizTones is one of the most popular apps on the market for this kind of thing. One stand-out feature is how it eliminates the need to sweep for audio. QuizTones also allows you to choose different difficulty levels. It even lets you import loops from your own library and see what they sound like when you isolate different frequency bands. This learning in context is really what makes QuizTones stand out from other, similar apps.

Price: 14.99 USD for Mac, 4.99 USD for your iOS handheld device

Requirements: Mac and iOS only. You can check their website by clicking here.

Best for Simplicity: Ear Plugins

This is a totally deceptive plugin. At first glance it looks extremely simple, however, when you unpack its features you discover everything which you need.

In terms of design, this plugin is almost like a piece of retro technology. There is also a small game feature. Here, it tracks the number of guesses you’ve made of a particular bandwidth on the EQ spectrum. Due to the fact it’s small and not distracting, this is also a great plugin to keep on the side. Therefore the ability to incorporate it into the rest of your computer’s interface discreetly makes it phenomenal for busy musicians.

You might need more time to set up and install this than the average plugin. The developer originally intended it for his personal use, however, you can find easy-to-follow instructions on their website. What I like about EarPlugins is really its design and layout. It’s easy on the eye means that there is more focus on the sound itself. It also helps that you can plug in any of your own sound files to use to train. Find it and even get in touch with the developers below.

Price: Free

Requirements: available for Windows only

Best for A Comprehensive Look: SoundGym

SoundGym is an absolutely phenomenal ear training programme. This is, in fact, one of the most comprehensive pieces of software on this list. SoundGym operates on the same premise as a real gym. It also includes all the most common plugins and FX to train your ears as well.

Ear training has sometimes come to mean frequency detection or focus on the EQ process. However, SoundGym takes into account is compression you struggle with. It even has separate sections for training beat identification as well as the classic focus on EQ. SoundGym’s production and audio courses, in fact, are all designed to revolutionise how people ear train.

The only downside of SoundGym is it’s more of an online platform than anything else. There is no windows or iOS compatible app at the moment. However, you can track your progress, and train and compete with thousands of other users online and worldwide. This makes it truly addictive and properly challenging.

Price: Free

Requirements: Internet access – this amazing website is entirely online!

Best Ear Training Software for Consistent Practice: Complete Ear Trainer

Complete ear trainer really does what it says on the tin. It’s comprehensive and works with notes, intervals, and chords. This last feature makes it a really smart app for musicians who prefer to learn how things fit together. After all, focussing on your relative pitch, it also understands that it’s necessary to learn things holistically.

Apart from that, the developers put this app together simply but well. It has everything you need without too many distracting features. This makes it perfect for those who just want to focus. Its unique video game format means that it’s super easy to maintain a consistent practice. Like anything, ear training is a skill you can improve with repeated mastery. Of all the apps and software on this list, this one is possibly best for maintaining skill level. In fact, it hits the sweet spot between breaking things down and additional features.

Price: Free – an amazing price for such a comprehensive app

Requirements: Your handheld device – Complete Ear Trainer is available for both Apple products, Huawei mobile, Android, and also available on Amazon as a free download.

Best Ear Training Software for an Academic Approach: EarMaster

EarMaster is the software on this list which deals the most with traditional academic style ear training. This means that it has options involving written music notation. It really gets you back to the basics of conservatory style interval and pitch training. Nevertheless, it doesn’t just do a handful of basic things, it also has a special section just for jazz musicians. As jazz uses lots of complex chords which don’t always show up in regular chord and interval training software. As a result, this is an absolute lifeline for jazz musicians. Indeed, it helps anyone who wants to familiarise themselves with chords and intervals which are less easy to find online.

Apart from this, it has options for both ear and rhythm training. The latter is something which not many other apps or software cover. Functional ear training means you can also use a keyboard, sing, or use solfege syllables to match notes. This is very helpful as you will gain familiarity with a wide variety of methods.

A lot of musicians prefer doing things by matching the software they use. This could include using their favourite EQ frequency plugin or a midi keyboard. However, it doesn’t hurt to get back to basics sometimes. EarMaster is exactly the kind of app which will walk you through that from scratch to perfect audio sensitivity.

Price: Free versions available, more in-depth versions available for a monthly 4.99 Euro or 5.01 USD subscription

Requirements: Windows 7, 8, 10, 11, Mac 10.12 + and iOs 10 +

Final Thoughts

It’s not really possible to choose the ‘best’ software as every musician will have a different style of learning. Nevertheless, this list includes a varied number of different options. This way, there is something for each preference. Whether you want something more traditional, need to focus on your jazz chords, or learn best when things are interactive, it always helps to investigate different choices. In addition, take both your playing style and habits into account. That way, by knowing what works, your ear training journey will inevitably go much more smoothly.

Enjoyed this article? We have a whole category of music software, available at the following link: https://www.idesignsound.com/software/

Best Software for Guitar Loops 2022: How to Get Started with Looping

There’s no easy way of classifying the best software for making guitar loops. This handy list will guide you through some of the most well-known DAWs. It also includes hidden gem apps and plugins to get you everything you need in terms of guitar looping. Read on to find out more.

Mobius: Best Free Software for Guitar Loops

Mobius is a fantastic free plugin. It’s really got everything needed for anything you might want to experiment with. Although the website suggests using a MIDI keyboard, you can actually adapt it for guitar too. Mobius uses samples. Therefore, it’s easy for a guitarist to quickly record a lick or riff and modify it to their heart’s desire. In this way, it helps cross the threshold between classic guitar playing and altering their sound with production.

Mobius has an interface which is clean and easy to decipher. The designers have laid all different options across the top. And, with only two colours, black and icy purple, it’s not too complicated to look at. With eight different channels for audio recordings, you can layer loops and see how they interact. Mobius strips its technological features back to the basics. It has options to record, overdub, reverse, and speed control, but this also forces guitarists to become more creative. You can download Mobius by clicking here and opening their own website.

Best Software for Guitar Loops if you already own Ableton Live: Looper – built in Ableton effect

Everyone’s heard of Ableton Live, but it would be a crime not to include it on this list. Ableton’s live mode allows musicians to break out of the constraints of a timeline and edit things holistically. This is great for musicians who don’t compose in a linear way. It also helps get a broader overview of your track and how loops fit into it.

So why is Ableton so great and why does it deserve a place on this list? Ultimately it is highly flexible and offers a unique position between analogue and digital. Its unique pad-based play-station means multiple loops can be played over the top of each other. Instruments can also be looped live in this way.

Ableton has a complex system of add-ons and upgrades. However, the plus of this is that it allows musicians to choose exactly the things they need and nothing more. However, Live 11 intro begins at 99 USD and requires Windows 10 or higher, or MacOS 10.13 to 12.

Loop Studio: Best for On the Go

On the surface, compared to some of the options on this list, Microsoft’s Loop Studio isn’t much. This app, available for handheld devices only, strips things really down to the basics. It has a clean and simple layout with nicely designed square pads and tracks to sort out your samples. It also has the option to loop both pre-recorded instruments and to record directly into your phone.

So why does Loop Studio make the list? Loop Studio is exactly what you want on your phone whether you’re in a jam session and need to capture a particular moment. That way, you can see how it sounds in various forms – it’s also perfect for when you’re on the go or simply don’t have the time to sit down at a computer or with more complex software.

Loop Studio is a perfect place to find your sound and store ideas. In this way, it works in a similar manner to Apple’s voice notes feature. For such a simple app, it really does a lot. For this, it has deserved a rightful place on this list.

FL Studio: One of the Best DAWs for Guitar Loops

Like Ableton, almost everyone has heard of FrootyLoops studio. So, what’s the difference between them in terms of looping software and which is better for guitarists? Many find they both lend themselves more to electronic music. However, because of this, they excel at making looping easy to master. As a result, both FL Studio and Ableton deserve a place on the list. However, how do they really compare?

For the purpose of guitar loops at least, FL Studio is more like a traditional DAW. Yet FL Studio really comes into it’s own when you investigate the guitar loops packs it has. Depending on your preference, these can be more creative than those found on Logic. It’s also stellar for combining your guitar loops with some of its beat-making features, and generally offers a creative playground for guitar looping experiments.

LoopyPro: A Futuristic and Highly Intutiive Looper

LoopyPro is easily one of the most aesthetically pleasing bits of software on this list. One bonus point of its appearance is that it allows you to have an overview of everything going on. In addition, the demos on the LoopyPro website easily walk you through how to balance all the different options. It’s really thorough with all this amazing bit of kit has to offer.

This smart app is available for your iOS devices as well as for your macOS computer. LoopyPro may appear at first glance to be more suited to synths and drum pads. However, it works perfectly with riffs, laid-back solos, or additions from your six-string in an otherwise mostly electronic track. In fact, as many YouTube tutorials show, it’s popular with guitarists. It has a great ability to track multiple fiddly licks and riffs. It really lends itself to more complex styles of playing!

As a sampler, sequencer and DAW, in addition, this is actually a really powerful bit of software. It is well worth checking out if you need an alternative to Logic X Pro in favour of something more intuitive.

SooperLooper: An Honourable Mention

We’ve listed SooperLooper as an honourable mention. It’s not necessarily as easy to use or set up as some of the others. It requires JACK, a sound server API which lowers latency in connections between applications. In addition, SooperLooper isn’t available for Windows. Their website actually suggests Mobius (listed first in this article) as a similar alternative for those working on PC.

Nevertheless, SooperLooper is a pretty great loop station. It’s discrete and you can easily keep it as a small window on your desktop. The website does recommend that it works best with hardware in addition, such as MIDI foot-pedals. However, for an already-equipped musician who is confident with both software and hardware, SooperLooper is definitely a candidate. It’s a very unobtrusive loop station, and can quickly become a part of the furniture on your desktop.

Final Thoughts: A Rundown of the Best Software for Guitar Loops

Loop stations and looping software offer a lot of potential both for quick and flexible composition. However, it can be hard to tell which one suits your style of music best. Nevertheless, this list contains some of the best and most easily usable options out there. Now the only thing left is to experiment, play around, and remember to have fun.

Enjoyed this article? We have a full category of music software, available here at the following link; https://www.idesignsound.com/software/

FREE ARTURIA ANALOG LAB Intro, until the 28th of February 2022

Waiting for good offers is like waiting for something to change in your life. You never know when they will come, but once they are there you instantly know. This month, the wait for a good offer on Arturia Analog Lab VST is over.

Ok, it’s not really an offer and it’s not really a discount. It’s a freebie, the INTRO version of Arturia’s faithful recreation of the most classic electronic instruments, brought to speed with modern workflow improvements, all wrapped up into a very easy to use collection.

Please note that this offer is not truly 100% free. You have to purchase a product from Pluginboutique to benefit from it, but the good news is that it can be any product. We recommend you check out the excellent Pluginboutique deals right here.

We are big fans of Analog Lab here at idesignsound.com, having both the current Analog Lab and also the older Analog Laboratory offerings always in use in our productions. We truly recommend the Prophet V emulation, the Farfisa organ recreation and of course the Minimoog.

How It Works:

  • Make sure you have a registered Plugin Boutique account. You can of course create a fresh one for this offer.
  • Add any paid-for product to your basket (This offer is not valid on free products).
  • Select one free gift from the choice of three and complete checkout.
  • Don’t use Virtual Cash or a coupon for the FULL amount of the transaction. (Any amount less than 100% is still OK though!)

Important Notes:

  • If you already own Arturia Analog Lab Intro, we are unable to offer an alternative product.
  • You cannot exchange your copy of Arturia Analog Lab Intro for another product.
  • You cannot resell your copy of Arturia Analog Lab Intro.
  • Each customer is eligible to claim 1 x copy of Arturia Analog Lab Intro.

You can find more details on Pluginboutique’s offer by clicking here.

FREE Piano sampler instrument from Spitfire Audio

Newsflash! Get your free Piano Sample based VST right now. And don’t expect a low quality one, guys. This one is stellar!

From our testing this Spitfire Audio sample library is one of the best ones we ever heard. And this is because it is recorded from a very legendary instrument: Phillip Glass’ New York Baby Grand Piano.

This instrument has not been moved in 30 years time, and has been always properly tuned and managed. Spitfire Audio made it into a free LABS instrument library. It has been recorded in a pristine sounding room with lots of character. Philip Glass even mentioned that it has a particular smooth and gentle character in the low registers.

The instrument and library is available for both Windows and Mac and comes in VST2, VST3, AAX and AU software forms. You can get Glass Piano on the Spitfire Audio website by clicking here.

Free alternative products to the BEST VST instruments and effects

Hello ladies and gentlemen, for today iDesignSound.com will bring you our own favourite free alternative vst plugins to the most popular digital music production tools on the market.

Sure, VSTs are great, and VSTs are usually much more cheaper than actual hardware music production tools. Still, when it comes to digital products, there will always be a free option. This is because digital is literally, well, digital meaning without physical form. This means that once some effort has been put into development, copying and distributing the product can be free of charge. This has in turn provided never before seen accessibility and democratisation of the music landscape. Now, all you need to make music is basically talent, a (fairly cheap) computer and your DAW of choice (which can also be free, of course). Let’s dive straight in and see what’s on “offer” in 2021:

Serum free alternative plugin synth: Vital

We start with the biggest one, in our oppinion. So big that it is extremely hard not to use. Ok so we all know and love Serum, it is one of the best sounding and most powerful sound design tool there is. We stand by our words here, and we actually wrote a lot of articles here at idesignsound.com involving serum, such as a detailed comparison between Serum and Omnisphere and also there is an evergreen, always updated article on the top best VST synth which Serum won (on the Value/Budget choice).

Thus, finding an alternative is a bit hard, but it is possible. Without further ado, we present the closest match in the free vst market for a Serum replacement: Vital. It comes pretty close in terms of power and sound quality, albeit it does have some bugs.

You can get Vital from their website right here, unfortunately there is no mac version, only windows. Don’t confuse it with Glitch 2, which is a (very good) paid effects unit.

Effectrix free alternative vst: Glitch

Step into the world of sequenced effect units. Basically, they apply effects only to certain parts of your sound, and you control which part you want to modify with a simple and known interface. The resemblance is not there, but trust us, it is basically the same thing. The effects are on par in sound quality, and there is even a randomiser on board for those that like to experiment.

Glitch is available free of charge here.

RC-20 Retro Color free alternative vst: Izotope Vinyl

This is one of our favourites. It is soo simple to use and the results are extremely good. What we like about Izotope Vinyl that is comparable to RC 20 VST is the instant gratification element. You just slide a little fader and the sound takes so much color and character, a smile is guaranteed to appear on your face.

Sure, the graphical user interface is extremely spartan compared to the RC2o plugin but who cares, as long as the results are comparable. And they most certainly are. You even have the wobble from RC-20, represented on Izotope Vinyl as the “warp” control, with the added bonus of actually controlling the warp shape.

On the RC-20 there is the “Digital” and “Distort” control which is basically a bit reduction and a form of distortion that can be replicated in any daw with built in effects, it’s really nothing special. If you really must have a 3rd party VST alternative, any distortion and bit reduction plugin works. Also, the “Space” control on the RC-20 is just a normal reverb, there are a lot of free reverb options out there. If you don’t know any free reverb, bit reduction and distortion plugin, let us point you in the right direction with this free vst mega list.

Izotope vinyl is available on Izotope’s website.

Guitar Rig alternative: Amplitube

Well, kind of. Yes, Amplitube is a paid/licensed piece of software that has a free of charge version. Guitar rig also has a free version, a demo mode. Still, we consider that Amplitube is a good contender if you want to find a Guitar Rig replacement that is also free of charge. We decidecated a whole article on comparing Amplitube to Guitar Rig here.

Antares Auto Tune free replacement: Graillon 2

Ah Auto-tune, the effect we really love to hate here at iDesignSound. That is because we consider ourselves serious music makers who don’t really like pop and the pop sound that you can find in basically all mainstream music including a lot of hip hop.

Still, if you must use it, there is really no point in getting a paid plugin unless you really really need all the very pro features, But if you just want to tune vocals without ruining the sound qualities then the alternative vst called Graillon 2 will work just fine, and you can find the free version here.

That was it, we hope we managed to make your music production journey a bit more budget friendly. Still, if you want to use the paid plugins like a bigboy, sign up to our newsletter, we always provide our subscribers the best deals on the market!

Enhance your Drums for FREE – Diablo lite VST

If you always compared your own drum works to the professional sound and felt a little off, Diablo lite is for you. This VST is pretty nice, as our test shown, and really works especially on electronic drums.

So what is Diablo lite?

Diablo lite is a FREE VST offering by Cymatics. You know them mostly for their (paid) sample packs but they actually have a lot of free products too. And not just sample packs but plugins and also presets for popular plugins.

And if FREE VSTs are your thing, we actually are maintaining a very extensive list of more than 400 freebies here, where we actually added Diablo lite.

Now, about Diablo lite, this VST is part compressor and part transient shaper. The compressor is actually a clipper, so the compression ratio is very high, close to the well-known “brick wall” style of compression. Because of this dual nature of this sound treatment device, it is excellent for drums.

How do you use it?

So basically every producer uses some form or compression on the drums, either on the whole drum bus or individually. This is because most source material, be it sample-based, synth or live recorded is kind of in the middle in terms of dynamics. It can cut through your whole song but in it’s dry form doesn’t. It has the neutral drum sound, is not in your face but is also not absent. What you want to do is actually fit the drums in your sound.

Let’s take the 808 for example, it is ubiquitous and used in a lot, i mean A LOT of music genres. Some genres use it in a more aggressive flavour, some prefer it more mellow. So you basically do this with either a compressor, a transient shaper or both. Transient shapers basically dictate the initial snap and also the remaining tail of the sound.

This is the Punch control knob and dictates the presence. For dynamics, you have the Clip setting, which actually enganges the limiter and makes the sound more compact as you crank it. If you used too much Punch and the drum just jumps out of the mix and commands too much of the user’s attention, try to not use Clip and just turn it down in the mix instead.

But if the Punch knob does not actually do the trick for you because it makes the drum loose it’s initial character, then Clip can save you and achieve the strength that you are looking for in that particular sound.

Actually the website has a lot of samples for this product, and you can actually hear it in action. But why not download it yourself from this download link?

Very interesting free VST – Lyra 8 recreation

For those that know and for those that don’t, Lyra-8 is a very interesting synth with a very interesting sound engine and layout.

I know, because I own it (the orange sunset colorway of course) and I can say that it is nothing short of incredible.

Lyra 8 is all about cross modulation and finding atmospheric chords

Yes, that’s right, there is no keyboard you don’t really get to play standard notes (western division into notes and semitones). There is also no MIDI so the VST version is interesting because you can get to play standard chords very easily. I got it mostly for that.

On the hardware unit you close the circuit and play the note with the two buttons on the bottom, by putting your finger or any conductive material on both for each oscillator. You only have knob tuning to select the note/pitch that each oscillator plays.

There is a also external processing on the hardware.

So having both the hardware unit and the VST makes sense if you plan to use the hardware for the BBD style delay and distortion on external sounds only.

Be sure to check also our list of 400+ free VSTs (regularly updated, we just added the Lyra 8 VST here as well).

Here is a video demonstrating the hardware, it is advised you check it first to see what to expect from the VST:

To be honest, it does not really matter what you plan to do because the VST is free. I fully recommend you test it out as I am sure you will find a place for it in your sound design pallettte.

The free VST can be downloaded here.

Freebie Alert – Juno Chorus Clone From Arturia FREE

Ho! Ho! Ho! Arturia has done a very good clone of vintage vibe and it’s free of charge until 29th of December 2020

Let’s end this year in style and in class!

This plugin is good. Sure, it will never be like the real thing, right? This is not really that important, what is more important is that you as a producer will have one more tool to fit your sound design ideas in. You all know what this is, namely a clone of the legendary chorus found on the Juno synth. Arturia’s take is exactly the one that can be heard on their Juno software emulation. They even put a web preview for you, so you can instantly hear it.

https://www.arturia.com/freegift-chorus-jun6

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