11 VST Plugins With The Best Presets

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If you want to get up and running fast, presets make a big difference.

When it comes right down to it, many producers, and songwriters, sometimes value quality presets with VST plugins over other criteria like sound quality or ease of use.

So, in this guide, we’ll be looking at the VST plugins with the best presets.

Diva by u-he – Best Overall

Diva by u-he – Best Overall

Melding together the best parts of vintage synths, u-he’s Diva consistently ranks among the best VST plugins available (not just the best soft synths available). And there’s no question its large range of presets contribute to its status as one of the top-rated virtual synths.

Diva features over 1,200 presets, all of which have been slotted into appropriate categories – bass, lead, poly synth, dream synth, percussive, rhythmic, effects, and more. While it is a virtual analog synth with an emphasis on classic sounds first and foremost, there’s no denying that there are highly usable modern sounds as well.

It would not be what it is if it didn’t also sound great. But it strikes the perfect balance in terms of features too. Everything you need to shape your sounds (even if it’s just to subtly tweak your favorite presets) is here – filters, envelopes, effects, modifiers, and trimmers.

u-he knows what they’re doing, and they never release junk, even if it’s free. Diva isn’t new, and it isn’t free, but its popularity and utility never seem to diminish. If you’ve never heard of Diva before, then I suggest checking out its many presets, features, and capabilities in the video below.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

V Collection 9 by Arturia – Best Premium Option

V Collection 9 by Arturia – Best Premium Option

What is Arturia’s V Collection 9 if not a preset factory? Featuring 32 instruments ranging from Jun-6 V and Prophet-VS V to Stage-73 V and B-3 V, this collection sets all the classic keyboards and synthesizers right at your fingertips. Anyone with major gaps in their VST toolbox will benefit greatly from this.

The collection includes 14,000 presets(!). I mean… would you expect any less from a collection that comes with 32 instruments? I’m joking of course. That’s still an insane number of presets. From vintage to modern, you can take advantage of the smart filter browsing to find exactly what you’re looking for.

There’s no easy way to sum up everything the V Collection gives you access to. 32 instruments, each with their own interfaces, parameters, and features, thousands of presets, in-app tutorials, macros, and a great deal more.

Not much more needs to be said as to why this is our best premium option. And you’re certainly not going to save any money buying 32 Arturia products one at a time. If you’ve got the budget, and you need more keyboard and synthesizer power, this is your ticket to synthesized empowerment.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

TAL-BassLine-101 by TAL – Best Budget Option

TAL-BassLine-101 by TAL – Best Budget Option

If you’re looking for a plugin with solid bang for buck value, TAL-BassLine-101 delivers it in spades. It should be noted, of course, that this is a monophonic bass synth, so if you think you might need a synth with a little more versatility, you might look elsewhere in this guide.

(It still comes with a six-voice poly mode, though, so you never know.)

TAL-BassLine-101 comes with 300+ presets, which is an excellent starting point. As you can imagine, you can access a near limitless array of bass sounds in the categories of arpeggiator, bass, FX, keys, leads, pads, percussion, and sequencer.

And you can probably tell just from looking at the preset categories that this synth can do more than bass. Some reviewers have even said it’s the only synth you need, and there’s no denying its sound is quality, and its feature set is thorough, with MIDI learn, an arpeggiator, step sequencer, and more.

This is our best budget selection, and again, what you’re getting for the price is quite superb.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Serum by Xfer Records

Serum by Xfer Records

Advanced virtual wavetable synths with near infinite capacity are dominating the soundscape of modern music. Xfer Records’ Serum is synonymous with this unstoppable power wave, and if you haven’t heard of it, you must live under a rock or be new to modern music production.

Right out of the box, Serum comes with 450 presets and 144 wavetables. Which is impressive enough a stat all on its own. What’s more impressive, though, is the near limitless supply of low-cost preset packs tailored to any occasion – trap, dance, house and tech, tropical house, ambient chillout, future bass, and much, much more.

Serum features an array of presets in a variety of categories – bass, FX, leads, misc., pads, plucked, seq., synth, and more. If you’re wondering what these sound like, you’ve but to click on the video below, because it’s a useful if lengthy all factory preset playthrough.

Serum is also a customizer’s dream, though, as it lets you do just about anything you can imagine with wavetables, including importing your own, creating your own, morphing between wavetables using different methods, and much more.

Learn more: Splice

Phase Plant by Kilohearts

Phase Plant by Kilohearts

Kilohearts’ Phase Plant is a treasure trove of presets. This semi-modular soft synth lets you combine generators, modulators, and effects with ease to create great sounding patches with speed and ease.

With Phase Plant, you can also choose from several sources – waveforms, wavetables, samples, and noise. There are plenty of factory wavetables you can take advantage of, and even create your own with the built-in editor.

One of the things that makes Phase Plant a toolbox surpassing many is the fact that it includes Kilohearts Essentials, a large array of effects that can be combined and modulated using the three available Phase Plant effects lanes.

You name it, they’ve probably got it – three-band EQ, chorus, comb filter, delay, distortion, ensemble, formant filter, frequency shifter, gain, limiter phaser, resonator, reverb, ring mod, stereo, tape stop, trance gate, transient shaper, and much more.

Additionally, Phase Plant offers near infinitely configurable modulation, extensive FM features, MPE compatibility, and more.

Phase Plant is considered by some as one of the most versatile synthesizers available. It comes with hundreds of compelling presets, which is compelling, but what’s even more compelling is the sheer amount of configurability.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Pigments 4 by Arturia

Pigments 4 by Arturia

Arturia generally doesn’t make junk, and if they do, they update the crap out of it. Joking aside, Pigments 4 is easily one of the best software synthesizers out there, and experienced producers can’t shut up about it.

Its extensive preset library includes 1,400 presets. Fortuitously, Arturia included an easy-to-use preset browser that helps you find what you’re looking for faster. That’s a relief, considering the size of the library.

Naturally, you can find everything from rich, layered, and ponderous fantastical atmospheres to simple, warm plucks. From electronic music and beat making to sound design and film scoring work, Pigments 4 can handle just about any job you throw at it.

We’ve barely scratched the surface of its feature set, but Pigments 4 also comes with four engines (analog, sample, wavetable, and harmonic), an extensive collection of filters and effects, drag and drop modulation, sequencing and arpeggiation, flexible audio routing options, and much more.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

MASSIVE by Native Instruments

MASSIVE by Native Instruments

You can’t really mention presets without also mentioning Native Instruments’ MASSIVE in the same breath, a go-to for electronic and bass music.

With powerful bass and lead sounds at its heart, MASSIVE is a highly configurable virtual analog synth with a big selection of wavetable oscillators, modulation options, filters, effects, and more.

MASSIVE also boasts 1,300 presets created by sound designers and leading artists. Having listened to many of these myself, I can honestly say the variety here is astounding, with an array of sounds that slice through a mix on command.

The 1,300 presets can be found across six sound banks, with piano / keys, organ, synth lead, synth pad, synth misc., bass, drums, mallet instruments, bowed strings, soundscapes, sound effects, multi-track, and more.

In addition, MASSIVE comes with flexible macro controls and various routing options.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Spire by Reveal Sound

Spire by Reveal Sound

Another oldie but goodie, Reveal Sound’s Spire has revealed itself as an enduring classic. This soft synth, combining the domains of analog and digital, comes with all the features you need to create and customize killer sounds.

Out of the box, you get over 1,000 factory presets, including leads, pads, plucks, drums, FX, bass sequences, arpeggios, and more. You can even extend the popular synth’s functionality with the Melodic Touch expansion pack, with 64 additional presets.

Of course, for it to be great, it would need to have great sound quality and features too, something Spire offers in spades.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Modular by Softube

Modular by Softube

It’s no mystery what Softube was after with Modular. This virtual analog modular synthesizer takes customizability to near limitless levels. Out of the box, it comes with six modelled Doepfer modules and 20 utility modules, but you can get additional modules from a variety of Eurorack vendors.

There is a huge selection of add-ons, something we think has contributed greatly to the success of this synth.

Modular comes with over 200 presets to help you get started with. There are presets covering a variety of sounds and styles, with basses, brass, FX, leads, and pads. We have a feeling the users who loved this entry most weren’t just on about the presets, though, and were more so enamored with the synth’s flexibility.

With Modular, you can take advantage of Softube Heartbeat drum channels and EQ, and the plugin can be used either as an effect or an instrument.

When it comes to virtual modular synthesis, there is no denying that there are options besides Modular. But this synth strikes a balance that its users ended up loving.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

VPS Avenger by Vengeance Sound

VPS Avenger by Vengeance Sound

Vengeance Sound’s VPS Avenger is another popular soft synth that shines in the domain of presets. This synth was designed as the synth to end all synths. I don’t know if it fulfills that promise, but from sound quality to versatility, VPS Avenger hits the nail on the head in numerous ways.

Presets? It’s got them, to the tune of over 1,000 factory presets. Arp, bass, bells, chords, drums, effects, instruments, leads, pads, and more, in a variety of categories – house, EDM / electro, trance, minimal / techno, hip-hop / trap, classic dance, world / folk, industrial / dark, and others.

VPS Avenger also comes with thousands of oscillator shapes, 620 multi-samples, 218 attacks and noises, 154 resampler waves, 168 drumkits, 168 drum sequences, 596 wavetables, and 219 granular samples. Wow.

VPS Avenger has got some other great features too, like eight OSC modules, drag and drop modulation matrix, advanced arpeggiator, additional sequencing capabilities, easy to understand routing system, over 30 effects, and more.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Usynth Core by ujam

Usynth Core by ujam

ujam’s Usynth Core is a virtual synth with two layers per note, customizable sequencer, and finisher with 90 presets. It also includes a delay unit, modulation, and one-finger-chords.

But this isn’t what makes Usynth a preset machine. Rather, it’s the fact that there are additional Usynth modules like Deluxe for soulful key sounds, 2080 for future retro wave sounds, Caramel for pads, and Euphoria for electronic dance tones.

Usynth Core is certainly the one to get if you can only get one, but it would be to your advantage to get all Usynth modules if you want access to more sounds and presets.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

What Should I Look For In A VST Plugins With The Best Presets?

So, you’re looking for a VST plugin with awesome presets. While there are plugins other than synthesizers that have great presets, what people are usually looking for when searching for great presets is synthesizers.

Okay, but what else should we consider when shopping for VST plugins with the best presets? Here are the main criteria to explore:

  • Quantity of presets. The number of presets will matter to greater or lesser degrees depending on what you’re looking for, but it’s certainly a consideration worthy of some attention. A synthesizer cannot be considered a great one, at least not in this regard, unless it has a solid selection of presets.
  • Quality of presets. If the presets aren’t any good, then it doesn’t matter much how many there are. A synthesizer must strike the balance between quantity and quality to be truly great. But if it has more presets, it usually means it’s a very versatile synth.
  • Presets matched with your projects. Let’s not forget that you’re buying something for you. That being the case, you should not randomly buy whatever synth crosses your path. You should see whether it has the kinds of sounds, features, and functionality that will work for you.

Top VST Plugins With The Best Presets, Final Thoughts

Looking for VST plugins with a great selection of presets? The best ones are represented above.

Don’t forget, however, that the value of presets isn’t just that they make plugins more beginner friendly. Presets also offer amazing jumping off points for creative exploration. And when it comes to synthesizers, there’s a lot of satisfaction that can come from designing your own sounds.

We hope you found everything you’re looking for and wish you all the best on your recording journey.

P.S. Remember though, none of what you've learned will matter if you don't know how to get your music out there and earn from it. Want to learn how to do that? Then get our free ‘5 Steps To Profitable Youtube Music Career' ebook emailed directly to you!

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