Featured image reads Best VST Stock Plugins for all the Major DAWs

As a massive FL Studio fan, I am used to the stock plugins that I have available to me. However, I thought it would be interesing to look at the best VST stock plugins for each of the major DAWs. This list is subjective and you may have a difference of opinion. These are my thoughts on the best VST stock plugins and may not be yours. In any case, a lot of these are researched as I don’t have experience with all of these DAWs. I’ve used Cubase, Pro Tools, Ableton and of course, FL Studio. Let’s dive in and take a look. I have included videos where they are necessary.

Key Takeaways on the Best VST Stock Plugins

By the end of this post, you will…

  • …have more knowledge about the different DAWS
  • …know something about the best VST stock plugins that are available for each DAW
  • …maybe want to switch DAWs

When it comes to Virtual Studio Technology (VST) stock plugins, each major Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) typically offers a unique set of tools that cater to different aspects of music production. Here’s a breakdown of some of the best stock VST plugins available in the major DAWs:

Ableton Live:

    Ableton is one of the most popular DAWs on the market. It may well be your best choice if you would like to perform at live shows as there is a lot of hardware gear that is especially built for use with Ableton Live. For instance, you have Push which is a terrific piece of kit that rivals Native Instruments‘ Maschine series.

    The Best VST Stock Plugins for Ableton Include…

    Operator

    Operator is a versatile FM synthesizer that can create a range of sounds from classic analog emulations to complex, evolving textures.

    Wavetable

    Wavetable is a powerful synthesizer that provides immediate hands-on control and deep flexibility.

    Echo

    A multi-featured delay plugin that can emulate classic tape and analog delays as well as create new and innovative effects.

    Logic Pro

    Logic Pro is only available on Mac. Therefore, they must be losing a lot of money as most bedroom music producers have PCs. As a PC user, it’s a little disappointing. However, all I need is my FL Studio. I’m a happy user of FL and don’t really want to change.

    The Best VST Stock Plugins for Logic Pro

    This is assuming your a Mac user, right? Well, there are different options for the best VST stock plugins from Logic Pro. I get the feeling they are a little snobby about the fact that they are, “only” available on the Mac. I’ve had to research this one so I’ll include a YouTube video or maybe two to explain these VSTs to you…

      Alchemy

      Highly regarded as one of the most powerful synths available in any DAW, offering multiple synthesis engines and a vast sound library.

      Space Designer

      As the name suggests, Space Designer is a reverb that uses real-life spaces to create complex, rich reverbs.

      Sculpture

      A unique modeling synth that can produce string, percussion, and other acoustic sounds.

      FL Studio

      FL Studio is my DAW of choice. It’s very user-friendly and easy to figure out. They also give you lifetime free upgrades. I initially bought FL Studio back in 2013 so I’ve used it for several years. FL is the only DAW I am happy to use. I did all of my University work on this platform and achieved everything I have achieved using FL.

        The Best VST Stock Plugins on FL Studio

        Sytrus

        Sytrus is a highly versatile FM synthesizer that can also handle subtractive synthesis. It has a reputation for deep sound design potential.

        Harmor

        An additive / subtractive synthesizer with advanced capabilities, including image and audio resynthesis.

        Gross Beat

        A time and volume manipulation tool that is perfect for real-time or rendered gating, glitching, repeat, scratching, and stutter effects.

        Pro Tools

        I started to use Pro Tools during my Foundation Degree. There was no sequencer and that is a red flag for me. A DAW that makes music has to have a sequencer if it expects to be taken seriously. I now understand that Pro Tools is a sound design software rather than a music production software. If you want to make sound effects with your DAW, then Pro Tools could be a good option. However, I wanted to have a DAW for music production. It is much harder to understand than FL Studio. Mind you, there are people out there who think that FL Studio is difficult to understand.

        If you are looking for the perfect DAW for you, I recommend that you watch tutorial and walkthrough videos on YouTube. You can then get an idea of whether a certain DAW makes sense for you.

        The Best VST Stock Plugins on Pro Tools

          Xpand!2

          XPand!2 is a multi-timbral workstation offering four active sound slots per patch. It has a huge library of sounds covering every category of music. This synth is made by Air Music Technologies and is available for use on any DAW. You can purchase this from Plugin Boutique for use on any DAW. Therefore, it is not strictly a Pro Tools stock plugin – even though it comes with Pro Tools.

          Avid Complete Plugin Bundle

          Provides a comprehensive collection of effects and instruments, enhancing production capabilities significantly.

          Cubase

          Cubase is Everhald’s DAW of choice. He has used it for years and purchases new upgrades whenever there is a new upgrade. I’ve used a Lite version of Cubase, but couldn’t figure it out very easily at all.

          The Best VST Stock Plugins on Cubase

            Retrologue 2

            Retrologue 2 is a virtual analog synthesizer that delivers old-school warmth and contemporary flexibility.

            Groove Agent SE

            A versatile drum production tool with detailed editing capabilities and an extensive library of sounds.

            Padshop

            Offers granular synthesis for creating intricate and evolving textures.

            Studio One

            Studio One is from PreSonus and an annual subscription costs between $180 and $400. It is available on both PC and Mac so most people will be able to subscribe. It’s a software package that I don’t know a lot about. However, it is quite a popular choice.

              The Best VST Stock Plugins on Studio one

              Mai Tai

              A polyphonic analog modeling synthesizer that is great for creating massive basses and cutting leads.

              Impact XT

              An advanced drum sampler with an extensive set of features for beat creation.

              Presence XT

              A sample-based instrument with a large library of sounds, from orchestral to synths and everything in between.

              Conclusion: The Best VST Stock Plugins

              These VSTs are included as stock plugins with their respective DAWs, providing a robust starting point for both amateur and professional music producers without the need for additional investments. Each DAW has its strengths, so the best VST plugins will often depend on the specific needs and workflow preferences of the user.

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