VST Plugins

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This page describes support for VST (Virtual Studio Technology) effect plugins in Audacity; VST instrument plugins that generate audio are not supported. A list of VST effects known to process correctly in Audacity on Windows is included.
VST effects are supported in OS X versions of Audacity, but relatively few are available due to Apple's competing Audio Units technology. There is no Audacity support for VST on Linux where the technology is little used, but some workarounds to run VST plugins on Linux can be found here.
 
Related article(s):


Contents


VST support in Audacity

Warning icon
  • Audacity is a 32-bit application on Windows and Mac OS X so won't see 64-bit versions of VST plugins, even on 64-bit operating systems.
  • VST 3 plugins are not supported.

In Audacity VST effects are displayed with full GUI interface (where provided by the plugin), and without need of the VST Enabler. This has been made possible by use of an open source VST header.

When Audacity is first launched, an "Install VST Effects" dialog will appear which lists VST plugins detected in the Plug-Ins folder inside the Audacity installation folder and in other system locations. Press OK to load the chosen plugins. Prior to Audacity 2.0.4, the scan happened automatically with no choice of which effects to load. Your VST effects will appear in the Effect menu, underneath the divider.

When you restart Audacity again it will reload the plugins it detected last session, as stored in the plugins.cfg file in the Audacity folder for application data. This avoids slowing down each Audacity launch by scanning for new plugins. So if you add more VST plugins later, you must go to the Effects tab of Audacity Preferences, check "Rescan VST effects next time Audacity is started ", then restart Audacity. If you subsequently remove any VST plugins, they will automatically be removed from the Effect menu after restart, without need for a rescan.

The overwhelming majority of VST effect plugins should now display and process correctly. If an incompatible VST plugin does cause a problem, try unchecking "Display VST effects in graphical mode" in the Effects Preferences, or rename or remove the plugin. To report a plugin that is problematic in current Audacity, please add it below, or write to our feedback address.

Where Audacity looks for VST plugins

Audacity searches for VST plugins in this order:

  1. On both Windows and OS X:
    • Directories called "Plug-Ins", "Plugins" or "VST" in the Audacity installation directory. On Windows, the Audacity installation directory is normally at C:\Program Files\Audacity. On 64-bit Windows this directory will be "Program Files (x86)" then as appropriate. On OS X, the Audacity installation directory is normally under /Applications.
    • The path specified by the VST_PATH environment variable
  2. Additionally on Windows, the following locations are also searched:
    • The Windows Registry key HKCU\Software\VST\VSTPluginsPath
    • The Windows Registry key HKLM\Software\VST\VSTPluginsPath
    • C:\Program Files\Steinberg\VSTPlugins (or C:\Program Files (x86)\Steinberg\VSTPlugins on 64-bit versions of Windows)
  1. Additionally on OS X, the following locations are also searched:
    • /Users/<user>/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST
    • /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST

The specified directories are searched recursively, which means that plugins that are inside their own folder in that directory should still be found by Audacity.

List of functional Plugins

Instructions for adding plugins to the list:
  1. Please insert new plugins that work in Audacity in the correct place so as to keep the list sorted in alphabetical order.
  2. Please give a download link to the plugin if possible, enclosing the link inside single square brackets - for example:
    [http://www.linktoplugin.com]
  3. If plugins are not free, please note this.


  • The majority of plugins will be for Windows only unless OS 9 or OS X is stated.
  • Classic Mac OS plugins will only work under OS 9 and previous. Mac OS X plugins with a .component file marked as "PowerPC" will only work on PPC Macs (they might work on Intel Macs with slow performance under Rosetta but Rosetta cannot be used on OS X 10.7 or later).


2WarpDelay_v1.dll
4poleLPF.dll
A0 Neosweep.dll
Acidfanatic overdrive.dll
Acidfanatic stereo2mono.dll
Acidfanatic ultradrive.dll
Ambience - reverb plugin for Windows, OS 9/X (PPC only)
ADopplerEn.dll
AnalogDelay.dll
AnechoicRoomSimulator.dll
Antares AutoTune Evo - Mostly works with current Audacity. Automatic pitch correction works, but to be able to draw pitch curves clock must be set to "internal" and not "host". (commercial)
Antress Modern Plugins including a number of compressors, a limiter, an expander, an exciter and a "spacer" which could be used for creating "fake stereo"
ANWIDA Soft DX Reverb Light.dll for Windows and Mac (PowerPC only)
ariesverb_0_2.dll
B_Decoder.dll
bandspin.dll
BassChorusV23.dll
BassPhaserV10.dll
Big Tick Dual Delay.dll
Big Tick Hexaline.dll
BJ Flanger.dll
BJ LoFi.dll
BJ Overdrive.dll
BJ Ringmodulator.dll
BJ Tremolo.dll
BJ Wavechanger2.dll
BLOCKFISH.dll - compressor for Windows and OS X (PPC only)
BlueCatMonoChorusVST.dll
BlueCatFlangerVST(Mono).dll
BlueCatFlangerVST(Stereo).dll
BlueCatPhaserVST(Mono).dll
BlueCatPhaserVST(Stereo).dll
BlueCatStereoChorusVST.dll
Bouncy.dll
BPan_e.dll
BPan_e_gui.dll
BPan_m.dll
BPan_m_gui.dll
bs2b.dll stereo to binaural
BuzMaxi.dll
Buzzroom CL 201 (Vintage Maximiser) - now shareware
c3multibandcomp_1_2.dll
c3multibandcomp_1_2sse.dll
CamelPhatFree.dll
CatDelay.dll
CatDelay_1_3.dll
CCTDelayLE.dll
Chimecho.dll
Classic Auto-Filter.dll
Classic Chorus.dll
Classic Compressor.dll
Classic Delay.dll
Classic EQ.dll
Classic Flanger.dll
Classic Master Limiter.dll
Classic Phaser.dll
Classic Reverb.dll
CompactDistortion.dll
Compressor2.dll
Compressor.dll
CoyoteWah.dll
CrazyIvan.dll
D_Limiter.dll
dB Compressor.dll
dbFree.dll
DCOffsetKiller.dll
Delayer.dll
Delta Filter.dll
Delta Force.dll
Delta Phase.dll
Delta Ping.dll
Delta Space.dll
dfx Buffer Override mono.dll
dfx Buffer Override stereo.dll
dfx Monomaker.dll
dfx Scrubby.dll
dfx Skidder.dll
DFX Transverb.dll
Distortionator Mk2.dll
dominion v1.2.dll
Dr_ExpanderDemo.dll
DtBlkFx (FFT-based frequency and harmonics manipulation). Also supports OS X (Universal binary) but only Windows version tested.
echographz.dll
effex.dll
E-Phonic LOFI.dll
E-Phonic XPressor.dll
EZmix (commercial, time limited demo available). Also supports OS X but only Windows version tested.
F_M_Comp.dll
F_M_EQShelf.dll
F_M_Tube.dll
F_S_Comp.dll
F_S_EQFilter.dll
F_S_EQShelf.dll
F_S_LineT.dll
F_S_Phase.dll
F_S_Tube.dll
FEILEI Surround Echo.dll
FEILEI Surround Encode.dll
FEILEI Surround Pan.dll
Filterizer.dll
FilterONE.dll
firegain.dll
Flaser.dll
Flipper.dll
FloFi.dll
FLOORFISH.dll - expander/noise gate for Windows and OS X (PPC only)
florus.dll
FlybabyBETA.dll
Freeverb for OS X
Freeverb2.dll for Windows
FreeverbToo.dll for Windows
Fruity 7band EQ.dll
Fruity balance.dll
Fruity bass boost.dll
Fruity blood overdrive.dll
Fruity filter.dll
Fruity delay.dll
Frohmage_vst2win.dll
Fuzz-Stone.dll
Gain.dll
GClip.dll
GComp.dll
GeneComp3.dll
GeneComp3_mono.dll
GeneComp.dll
GeneComp_mono.dll
GGate.dll
GHi.dll
Glacier.dll
dBlue Glitch - requires Audacity 1.3.9 or later; random probability feature does not work in Audacity 2.0.2
GLow.dll
GMulti Multi-band compressor
GranComp3.dll
GranComp3_mono.dll
GranComp.dll
GranComp_mono.dll
GRevDly.dll
GVerb.dll
Hard Limiter.dll
IndyGoDelay.dll
IndyGoGater.dll
IndyGoTremolo.dll
Invada EQ-Tube-Mono.dll
Invada EQ-Tube-Stereo.dll
Invada Tube-Mono.dll
Invada Tube-Stereo.dll
iZotope vinyl for Windows and OS X
JS plugin pack - contains plugins listed below.
JS 6 equalizer V1.0.dll
JS Band Cut V1.0.dll
JS Compresseur V1.1.dll
JS Disto V1.0.dll
JS equalizer V1.0.dll
JS Humanizer v1.0.dll
JS Limiteur V1.0.dll
JS Magneto V1.1.dll
JS Mini-sample V1.0.dll
JS Noise Attenu V1.0 .dll
JS Noise Filtre V1.0.dll
JS Oscil resonne V2.0 .dll
JS Oscil resonne V3.0.dll
JS PanDelay .dll
JS Resonnateur V1.0.dll
JS Vibrato V1.0.dll
jVSTwRapper-based plugins (on Windows, Mac OSX PPC/Intel and Linux).

jVSTwRapper is a way of writing Java plugins using VST-based technology, enclosed in a wrapper that makes them compatible for use in VST, Audio Units and LADSPA hosts. Thus jVSTwRapper plugins can be run on all three platforms.

karlette.dll
KarmaFX Deelay.dll
KarmaFX Filter.dll
KewlCompressor.dll
Killeringer.dll
KONTRAST.DLL
KristalEQ.dll
Kristalizer.dll
KristalReverb.dll
KTAudioHealer.dll
KwikKomp2b1.dll
KwikKomp3VST.dll
Levels.dll
Lisp level-independent sibilance processor
LoFiPlus.dll
LPGEQ2.dll
LPGEQ2_1.dll
LPGEQ.dll
LPGEQ_mono.dll
Mab.dll
MadShifta.dll
mda Bandisto.dll
mda BeatBox.dll
mda Combo.dll
mda De-ess.dll
mda Degrade.dll
mda Delay.dll
mda Detune.dll
mda Dither.dll
mda DubDelay.dll
mda Dynamics.dll
mda Envelope.dll
mda Image.dll
mda Leslie.dll
mda Limiter.dll
mda Loudness.dll
mda MultiBand.dll
mda Overdrive.dll
mda RePsycho!.dll
mda RezFilter.dll
mda RingMod.dll
mda RoundPan.dll
mda Shepard.dll
mda Splitter.dll
mda Stereo.dll
mda SubSynth.dll
mda Talkbox.dll
mda ThruZero.dll
mda Tracker.dll
mda VocInput.dll
mda Vocoder.dll
mdspFlanger.dll
Megatrancer.dll
MjCompressor.dll for Windows and OS X Windows version only has a tabular interface even in Audacity 1.3.8+
MjRotoDelay.dll
MnComp_v1r.dll
MonstaChorus.dll
Morphing Delay 2.1 Demo.dll
msBalance.dll
msComp.dll
msDecode.dll
msDelay.dll
msEncode.dll
msSwap.dll
msvcr71.dll
ndcPanner.dll
ndcTrem.dll
ndcTrem_plus.dll
noisegate.dll
normalizer.dll
NorthPole.dll
Null-BandSpin.dll
oversampler.dll
P1-Tapedelay.dll
PalancarWare Brick.dll
PalancarWare DeDC.dll
PalancarWare Empire.dll
PalancarWare Ozone.dll
PalancarWare Refero.dll
PalancarWare Scalar.dll
ppdisto.dll
preamp.dll
pvaccu.dll
pvexag.dll
pvtransp.dll
pwmdrive.dll
pzx.dll
q_delOizer30.dll
Qamp.dll
REFLEX free - a regenerating delay plugin, a mixture of stereo delays followed by a dense cloud of reflections (Download)
respass.dll
RetroDelay.dll
Reverb.dll
Reversinator.dll RMD.dll
Robotizer for Windows and Mac OS X (PPC only)
RoomMachine844.dll
RoomReverb.dll
RubyTube.dll
SampleSlider.dll
Saturator.dll - analog tape saturation emulator for added "warmth"
sc4.dll
sc 04 sec Stereo Delay.dll
sc Multi Delay.dll
sc Multi Tap Delay.dll
sc Stereo Panner.dll
sc Tremelo.dll
SDynamics.dll
SFilter.dll
SH-1 Chorus.dll
SH-1 Filter.dll
SH-1 Graphic EQ.dll
SH-1 LFO Multi.dll
SH-1 PhaseSifter.dll
SH-1 Reverb.dll
ShivaShifta.dll
SideChCompMn.dll
SideChCompSt.dll
SideKick2.dll
Silverspike Reverb-it Demo.dll
SimpleQ.dll
SimpleTremolo.dll
SLFO.dll
Solidverb.dll
SonicChorus.dll
SpectriX.dll
SPICE1_01.dll
SPITFISH.dll - de-esser for Windows and OS X (PPC only)
Square-o-matic.dll
Stardust.dll
Starplugs-RuntimePanner.dll
StComp_v1r.dll
stepper.dll
Stereoizer.dll
StereoFaker.dll
StereoStretcher.dll
StereoTools.dll
StudioVerb.dll
SupaPhaser.dll
surrounder.dll
TAL-Reverb-2 - popular GPL licensed plate reverb
tape Saturator.dll
TapeDelay.dll
TapeIt.dll
TB Compressor (working demo) in Tone Boosters plugin bundle - supports "New York" or "parallel" compression
Telephone.dll - simple, very realistic telephone audio simulator.
THD.dll
TK-3BandDisto.dll
TK-4Filters.dll
TK-BPMDelay.dll
TK-BPMDelayS.dll
TK-FeedFlanger.dll
TK-FilterDisto.dll
TK-FlangDestructor.dll
TK-LPFilterMod.dll
TK-StereoFlanger.dll
TranceFormer.dll
tridirt.dll
T-SLEDGE.dll
TubeBaby.dll
unmatched.dll
UpStereo.dll - stereo widener
UpStereo for OS X (not tested)
VariDelay.dll
VdPhazor.dll
VFlange.dll
VFlanger.dll
VIBRATOR1_00.dll
Vibro.dll
Volcano.dll
VOX_DoctorDemo.dll - De-Esser
VoxengoEssEQ.dll
VoxengoLampthruster (a VST amp simulator)
VoxengoOldSkoolVerb.dll
VoxengoPowershaper.dll
VoxengoSampleDelay.dll
VoxengoStereoTouch.dll
VoxengoTempoDelay.dll
VoxengoTubeAmp1.dll
VoxengoTubeAmp.dll
VPingPong.dll
VRingMod.dll
VSpectShift.dll
VST Enabler.dll
WARP.DLL
Whix.dll
xChorus.dll
xfaser_lite.dll
Z-BandSpin.dll
Z-FilterDub.dll
Z-Florus.dll
Z-Ringer.dll
Z-SpShift.dll
Z-SpVoc.dll

List of Plugins with known problems

Instructions for adding VST effect plugins to the list:
  1. Please do not add VST instrument plugins to the list, because Audacity won't work with any of those.
  2. List effect plugins that do not work properly in Audacity, giving a short note of the problem, such as "Audacity won't launch", "plugin does not appear in Effect Menu", "not all controls available", "audio not processed".
  3. Please give a download link to the plugin if possible, enclosing the link inside single square brackets - for example:
    [http://www.linktoplugin.com]
  4. Please also give your operating system such as Windows 7 or Mac OS X 10.9.4, the date of your report, and the version of Audacity used.
  5. Feel free to use current Audacity to retest any plugins that did not work with legacy VST Enabler or legacy 1.x versions of Audacity. If plugins now work, please move them up into the "working" list.
    • Audacity 2.0.6 onwards supports buffer delay compensation. Most plugins previously listed below that suffered from inserted silence due to Audacity's lack of compensation are no longer listed.


Plugin OS Date Audacity version Symptoms
Ambisonic Decoders Windows Dec.2011 1.3.13 and 1.3.14 (works in 1.3.12 and 1.3.15 onwards) Audacity crashes on launch
Auto-Tune Windows Dec.2012 Audacity 2.0.1 Tuning by MIDI input is not supported.
BlueCat OS X Sep.2014 Audacity 2.0.5, 2.0.6 In 2.0.5, the plugin interface does not work, so you can only use default settings. The interface works in 2.0.6, but in both versions, saving a preset will lock out the main Audacity window, requiring to close Audacity from the Dock.
CM Vocoder Windows/OS X Sep.08 Audacity 1.3.8+ Does not appear
Effect Chainer DX and VST wrapper Windows Jan.08 All can't host any plugins
FFX-4 DX and VST Wrapper Windows Jan.08 All can't host any plugins
Freeverb2 Windows 7 Oct.11 Audacity 1.3.13 Only tabular interface, no preset support
GRM Tools OS X May 2014 Audacity 2.0.6-alpha Interface cannot be used (so the effects can only be used at default settings) or interface disappears completely when loading preset. The interface is likely to be available in 2.0.6 release, but attempting to save a preset in any Audacity version could lock out the main Audacity window.
GRM Tools Windows Sep.08 Audacity 1.3.8+ unspecified
GSnap Windows Jan.2014 Audacity 2.0.6 Tuning by MIDI input is not supported.
keFIR Windows Apr.08 VST-Bridge 1.1 has no effect on audio
kn0ck0ut Windows Sep.2014 Audacity 2.0.6-alpha Despite Audacity 2.0.6 or later supporting buffer delay compensation, the start of the processed audio has silence inserted and a corresponding length is removed from the end of the processed audio. This also occurs in Goldwave and Wavosaur so is probably a bug in Kn0ck0ut, but the VST version is no longer being developed, only an LV2 version.
Sonic Maximizer Windows Sep.2007 VST-Bridge 1.1 not in Effect menu
SoundSoap2 (discontinued) (see also SoundSoap3) Windows, OS X 2007 (various) All Audacity won't launch
String Studio Windows 2007 (various) VST-Bridge 1.1 Audacity won't launch
T RackS 3 OS X Dec.2009 All Audacity won't launch
VisualVOX VST Windows Jan.2008 VST-Bridge 1.1 No interface, just silences audio
T RackS 3 OS X Dec.2009 All Audacity won't launch
Waves V5 Windows Dec.2012 Audacity 2.0.2 Hangs Audacity on launch
Waves V8 OS X Feb.2013 Audacity 2.0.3 Only tabular interface. Two entries (m) and (s) for each effect. GarageBand does not have either problem.(1)
(1) Audio Unit versions of Waves may cause Audacity 2.0.4 or earlier to freeze or crash on launch. In 2.0.5 or later, Waves Audio Units may cause a freeze or crash when the effect is chosen from the Effect Menu.
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