My top 5 Favorite Free plugins
Updated: Feb 11
Here is a list of my 5 favorite free plugins (with a couple bonuses). While these might not be the best free plugins out there, they are my personal favorites. Don’t write them off just because they are free. Some of them have great potential even for free versions. This list is not in any order from best to worse.
1- Youlean Loudness Meter
Every serious mixing and mastering engineer must have a good meter. If you haven’t got your hands on one yet, this free meter will do the job just fine. Never under estimate good metering, it is often one of the first thing new newbies overlook when looking for plug ins. Instead they see shiny gold coins (EQ’s, Compressors and Saturators). A good loudness meter is critical to taking measurements that are needed in order to put out a great product.
2- TB Pro Audio MV Meter 2
Staying on topic of meters, a good VU meter can come in handy as well for balancing mixes in the early stages of gain staging. This one is simple and straight forward with no frills or whistles.
3- Voxengo SPAN
It seems every time someone mentions a good free plug in it is Span. It has been a go to for many and good reason, its simplistic GUI is easy to read. A spectrum analyzer, like a good meter plugin is another important part in building a good toolbox of analyzers.
4- Brainworx BX Solo
Any serious mixing or mastering engineer should have a good mono plug in for M/S work. A lot of masters I receive from people just learning seem to overlook the importance of checking your mix in mono. This is one of my favorites as far as freebies go.
5- M Compare by MeldaProductions
M Compare is a tool for doing reference work. This plug in allows you to compare your chosen reference tracks, dry mix and different stages of your mastering chain. The perfect tool for reference work.
M Notepad by MeldaProductions
M Notepad allows you to input vital settings, fader readings, exc into text inside the plug in. Where some simply take notes and enter it into a text file, M Notepad allows you to customize each note in a certain spot in the form of a plugin. This plug in does nothing except keep data in the form of text and is nearly nonexistent as far as CPU is concerned.
If you need to take notes and want to organize them per track vs. putting everything in one text file, this plug in is good for its purpose. Not a great flashy plug in, just right to the point. It allows you to enter text inside your FX chains for critical note keeping (settings, readings).
Bonus number 2
TB Pro Audio ISOL8
This plugin is an advanced monitoring tool. It is great for monitoring 5 Different frequency groups. Those 5 bands can be muted or put into solo mode. They can also be adjusted. This is similar to a multiband compressor style monitoring tool where you can hone in on certain parts of the spectrum.