More and more musicians and producers are starting to get creative with the way they compose music. It’s no secret that virtual instruments are starting to slowly take over. This brings me to the bass guitar VST.
In a rush? I recommend the MODO Bass plug-in.
It is my opinion that there aren’t a ton of great bass guitar VST’s currently on the market, however, I am going to break down the ones that I think are exceptional.
The best bass guitar VST is going to be the instrument that sounds the most realistic when it comes to playing parts on a bass. It wasn’t until recently that bass guitar VST’s started to sound realistic. Now you can find plug-ins that sound so realistic that you can’t tell the difference.
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Best Bass Guitar VST’s
IK MultiMedia MODO Bass
- The first physically modeled electric bass virtual instrument
- Groundbreaking real-time modal synthesis technology - no samples used to create sound
- 12 iconic bass models that span the history of recorded electric bass
The IK Multimedia MODO Bass is the first plug-in that is modeled after completely realistic bass guitars. The difference here is that the sounds aren’t just samples. The MODO Bass uses modal synthesis the create its sounds.
I would say this is easily the most realistic sounding VST currently available. The modal synthesis puts it over the top as it’s not just sampled sounds.
Note: I use a keytar to play with this plugin and I can’t get enough of it.
The problem sometimes with samples is that there’s the lack of human touch to it. With this technique, you capture almost all of the human elements.
I believe this is truly a great product. The modal synthesis is incredible and the way it sounds is simply top-notch. Another plus is the price, compared to others.
Spectrasonics Trillian Bass Module
- Intuitive, automatic selection of dynamic legato and release articulations allows for highly realistic hammer-ons
- Publisher: Spectrasonics
Trillian is one of the more popular options that we will be looking at. This is a great product that sounds incredibly authentic.
The song, “Attention” by Charlie Puth was actually written with this software. The bass lick in the chorus is Trillian and it sounds super realistic.
The sound is bright, fat and crisp with each pre-set. This is the main selling point in my opinion. The dynamics are totally on point and you can find some crazy pre-sets to base songs around.
Trillian is easily one of my favorite options that I go to frequently. The sound is great and the dynamics are great.
Native Instruments Scarbee Rickenbacker
- The SCARBEE MM-BASS was recorded with flatwound strings to get that warm, creamy sound of 1970s disco and funk bass lines. The bass was recorded through a DI box to give maximum flexibility in the sound production. Furthermore, the full strings of the bass were sampled in order to reproduce the timbre changes that occur when you move between low and high frets - giving you rich, natural sound with all the overtones.
The Native Instruments Rickenbacker is very well known in the production industry. While the Rickenbacker sound isn’t for every bassist, this plug-in has been approved by Rickenbacker themselves.
You get a really crisp amp tone with this plug-in that sounds pretty realistic in all honesty.
The bass was recorded through a DI box to give maximum flexibility in the sound for the producer. When recording, Native Instruments sampled the sounds in order so they could reproduce the sounds in different timbres.
I’ve personally used this one quite a bit and it is a go-to for a lot of bands in their production if you don’t own a Rickenbacker bass guitar.
The selling point in the sound is the ability to pick different amps, EQ’s, and compressions. You can really dial in something special here.
My overall thoughts on the Native Instruments Rickenbacker are that the plug-in is exceptional. If you’re not a fan of the sound of Rickenbackers, you probably won’t dig it as much as a bassist who loves them.
For the price, I think is a very reasonable selection for producers looking for some solid basses.
The only downside here is that Kontakt is very CPU intensive. If you don’t have a solid device for music production, you may want to hold off.
Check out my favorite tablets for production in this guide where I tested out a bunch of different popular options.
What Is A Bass Guitar VST & Why Would You Use Them
In simple terms: they are virtual instruments that you download that sound like bass guitars. Different VST’s will have different things that they’re better at.
The reason that you would want to try them out as a producer is if you’re not a great bassist or if you’re experimenting. Sometimes it’s nice to write a part in on your DAW without having to set up and record. You can try out a bunch of different parts and sounds real easily this way.
You can be a great bassist and still find a use for these VST’s as there are so many different ways you can use them.
These have come a long way, so if you haven’t tried them out in a while, I recommend testing them out now.
Want to learn more about free DAW’s? Click here
What To Look For In A Bass Guitar VST
Dynamics: You want to find something that has proper dynamics in the sound. A real bass player can get certain tones that some VST’s just can’t pick up. Try to find a VST that is velocity sensitive and can detect how hard you’re hitting the notes. The plug-in should be able to have different sounds when struck harder or softer.
Tone: The tone should be realistic. You know right away when you try something out if it’s going to get the job done. There should be a lot of different effects and basses that you can pick from within the plug-in so you can mix it up.
How CPU Intense Is It?: VST’s can be very CPU intense, so if your computer isn’t very powerful, stick to something less intensive.
Difference Between Bass Guitar VST And Bass VST
The difference here is simple; a bass guitar VST is a bass VST. Bass refers to all different low-end sounds, whereas, a bass guitar simply emulates bass guitars only. There are a lot of synth basses that cover the low end as well.
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There’s a lot to take in when it comes to these types of VST’s. I hope this guide helped you with some new options.
Do you use these VST’s at all? Which is currently your favorite? Let me know below!