The 5 best FREE unique VST effects plugins

Getting an amazing sound using just your computer is easier than ever with digital music production but it’s not always cheap. We’ve got you covered with the top 5 free plugins around.

Here’s a list of 5 great effects plugins that do something a little differently than your regular reverb. Whether it’s distortion, filtering, delaying or completely crunching up the sounds and spitting it back out – these 5 plugins are sure to turn your instruments and samples into something unique.

These are personal favourites but there are of course loads of free plugins available online. If you’ve got some great sounding plugins for free that are your favourite, share the love in the comments and let us know what they are!

I’ve recorded a short little Rhodes sample as a raw file and then with each effect recorded it through the effects below with 4 different arrangements of parameters so you can get an idea of the type of effect and the range of possibilities on them.

Hysterisis

Hysteresis is a versatile effects processor geared toward electronic musicians and sound designers. Process anything from drums to synths, guitars, vocals and sound effects. On top of being able to create contorted signal mutations, it can also be tamed to generate classic delay effects.

Krush

With its bit crushing and downsampling algorithms, Krush combines the crispy taste of the digital realm with the warmth of its drive stage and analog modeled resonant filters. A modulation section allows you to quickly add extra life to the sound by modulating any parameter.

Modul8

Inspired by multiple Japanese stomp-boxes well known for their unique sound and approach to modulation, Modul8 is a dual LFO stereo chorus. It means that the resulting modulation is a combination of two LFOs scaled according to their respective modulation width, which results in almost endless number of rhythmic variations in the modulation pattern.

Multiply

Acon Digital Multiply is a free and versatile chorus effect with a unique twist. Each simulated voice is processed with a phase randomizing filter so that unpleasant comb filter effects are avoided. The effect can be used to simulate the effect of several performers playing the same tones simultaneously, to widen the spatial image or to create special effects for sound design. Multiply can simulate up to 6 additional voices and both the pitch and the loudness of the voices can be modulated. There is also an integrated equalizer consisting of low cut, low shelf, high shelf and high cut filters that can be applied to the effect signal. An integrated pre-delay section makes it possible to create modulated and diffuse echo effects.

Valhalla Freq Echo

Bode-Style Frequency Shifter + Analog Echo Emulation = Skull Melting Chaos. Perfect for dub, Dr. Who and all of your psychedelic needs. Sonic results range from subtle chorusing and double tracking to barberpole phasing and flanging to endless glissandos and runaway echos.

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