Hello Composers! Mike here, with a quick guide on the Best Sound Design VST Plugins. =)
There are so many ways you can do sound design. Distortion, Modulations, Morphing, Time-Stretching, Pitch-Shifting, Waveshaping etc. I love Sound Design, and I create and shape a lot of my sounds in my cinematic music.
I use plenty of VST plugins, both instruments and effects, to do my sound design work. And I also have researched a lot of options that you might want to check out. Let’s dive in! =)
VST Plugins for Sound Design
Hello Composers! =)
My name is Mike, founder of professionalcomposers.com, music composer and sound designer since 1998, old school nerd, and coffee addict. So grab a cup of coffee, and let’s check out some amazing Sound Design VST Plugins! =)
The king of distortion plugins. There is a reason why almost all professional producers are raving about this plugin. A friend of mine said: “It’s like hot sauce for audio, I like to put it on everything”. From gentle analog saturation to mangled beyond crazy distortion. It even has several models of distortion plus an extra button called “punish” when you really like to drive the sound hard.
Another distortion plugin, but this one has a whole range of creative features. It has a dual-stage multiband waveshaping distortion which gives you the ability to chain pairs of distortions. It even has a customizable waveshaper, and a lo-fi delay unit. iZotope Trash is more than distortion, it is about transforming your sounds! 😉
This plugin is all about adding movement to your sounds. Dynamic filter sweeps, automated crazy motion, or even construct intricate rhythmic filter sequences with the Rhythm Editor. As with all Soundtoys plugins, you get a huge range of presets to start from, but it’s also super fun to create your own! =)
Sometimes you just need that warm vintage analog color in your sounds. And what made that sound in the old days of music production, was partly that they used analog tapes to record to. This is where Tape Emulation plugins comes into play in modern music production. And Softube Tape is one of the kings in this field. Instant analog, warm flavor. Sweet! =)
This is a multiple function plugin that is amazing for beefing up any sound. It includes a compressor with 3 types to choose from, a saturation unit with vintage, modern or tube distortion, a transient shaper and an equalizer. Then it ends with a limiter to make sure you are not clipping after all insane sound mangling. The benefit of having all in one single plugin is that you get quick access, great overview, and easy loading and saving of presets.
My absolute favorite instrument plugin for all types of sound design. From instruments, to soundscapes, to twisted distorted pulses and rhythms. I have used Omnisphere since the first day it came out (in 2009 I believe), and I have at least one instance in pretty much every music production I made since then. I confess, I am addicted to Omnisphere, haha. 😛
Delay and echo effects are incredibly useful for sound design. And while there are plenty of standard delay plugins, you might also want a creative delay unit, such as the Crystallizer. It uses a combination of pitch-shifting and reverse echo algorithms to create shimmering soundscapes that sounds amazing. It’s dangerously fun to try different presets, so beware, haha. =)
What Plugins will you use for Sound Design?
These are some of the best ones from my personal view, but of course there are 100s, perhaps 1000s of VST plugins you could use for sound design. I recommend you to do some research, based on what kind of shaping, mangling and creative designing you want to do with your sounds.
Have fun with Sound Design for your Music Compositions and Productions! =)
My name is Mikael “Mike” Baggström, and I am a composer, sound designer, artist, video creator, coffee lover, and true nerd…
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