Free plugins are one of the greatest things about being a music producer in 2021. High-quality music production tools have never been more accessible for the average musician. However, with more freeware plugins showing up on the scene daily, understanding which ones work for your music production isn’t easy. That’s why we’re introducing you to the most useful and creative free music plugins in this article.
Creative developers will never stop releasing amazing tools for music production.
This month we take a look at some extraordinary approaches to plugin design that you’ll need to download right away.
So many vintage gear emulations claim to boost your sound with rich harmonics and overtones.
However, in the old school hardware they emulate, those qualities were often side effects of the limited technology of the time.
What if you could sculpt the harmonics of your sound directly, without having to make use of a vintage-style processor?
That’s exactly how ChromaDSP’s Harmonic Boost is designed.
Harmonic Boost adds harmonics to your signal based on the notes of the musical alphabet. It’s a unique way to manage the harmonic content of your tracks.
Subspace is considered the little brother of Zynaptiq Audio’s groundbreaking Adaptiverb plugin.
It makes use of the same resynthesis technology that helps create the original’s haunting reflectionless reverb.
It’s a smooth cinematic sound that provides dimension and space without introducing harshness from typical reverb reflections.
Subspace delivers its unique reverb with an interface so stripped down it borders on minimalism.
Just choose between the A, B, C or Z presets, choose your wet/dry mix to use this reverb plugin wherever you need smooth, stylish ambiance.
The 70s were the decade that synthesizers finally broke into mainstream music.
Spaced-out rockers like Edgar Winter and Pink Floyd made instruments like the Minimoog and ARP2600 into household names.
However, people forget plenty of different synths from the era because of technological improvement and trends change.
Some of the most fascinating was the paraphonic “string synthesizers” like the ARP Solina String Ensemble.
These were a few of the first widely available synths that could play more than one note at a time. Instead of true polyphony, string synths cheated by using a single filter and VCA to reshape and control their sound.
To make it more interesting, synth manufacturers included phaser and chorus effects to give the sustained tones a sense of action and movement.
The result was a bit eerie fake string sound with a distinctly cheesy tone.
2gether Audio’s Cheeze Machine 2 lovingly recreates the sound of these forgotten synths with style. Shine on you crazy diamond!
It might seem less flashy than other plugins that I’ve mentioned on this list. However, TBProAudio dpMeter serves a highly practical purpose.
It’s a versatile, accurate, and useful tool for keeping an eye on the levels in your DAW session.
You may have known about some of the new methods of measuring loudness in an audio signal. If you’re used to your DAW’s peak and RMS meters, new standards like LUFS can be complicated.
These are the critical parameters used in mastering
That’s because headroom, dynamic range, and overall loudness are actually more difficult to understand than they seem.
The important thing to unraveling it is to understand the basics and get familiar with using a meter in your workflow.
Unfortunately, some premium metering options are extremely expensive.
TBProAudio dpMeter is an accessible and accurate method to get the same important metering info used by the pros.
After compression, EQ and reverb, saturation is one of the mixing tools that can help form your mix the most.
In contrast to the others though, it’s frequently neglected by producers who mix in the DAW.
After all, digital distortion has a bad reputation for sounding thin, harsh, and unpleasant.
However, saturation plugins have gotten a lot better since the early days of digital audio.
They’re now considered important tone-shapers for a lot of pro mix engineers.
Saturation is able to include pleasing harmonics and push sounds forward in the mix without changing their dynamics or EQ too much.
Creative Intent’s Temper offers a unique take on saturation based on a method called phase distortion.
It’s a complex technology, however, the plugin makes it easy to make use of.
Check out Temper once you’re looking for a unique distortion device for your DAW.
Inspiring music tech
Sometimes all you need to pull out of a creative rut is one inspiring sound. That’s why free plugins are such an excellent opportunity for modern producers.
However, keeping up with every single free plugin takes a lot of effort.
You’ll know about some great new plugins you can download for free to get inspired for your music career.