Whether you’re bopping near the front stage at a musical festival or sitting in the backseat with the subwoofer’s bumpin’, it’s the bass that gets you moving.
Bass is such a core element in music of all types from Pop to Hip Hop and having the right bass sound in your track can either make or break the record.
If your song lacks that much needed low end that provides impact and energy, then maybe it’s time to update your arsenal of bass plugins.
Thankfully, there are a variety of bass VSTs, suitable for creating just about any kind of low-end material that you can think of.
In this article, you’ll discover some of the best bass VSTs on the market, from synthetic basses to multi-sampled bass instruments and more!
Let’s get started!
Top 10 Bass Plugins
- Loopmasters Bass Master
- Future Audio Workshop SubLab
- Arturia Mini V
- Output SUBSTANCE
- Softube Monoment Bass
- TAL BassLine 101
- Rob Papen SubBoomBass 2
- Sugar Bytes Cyclop
- D16 Group Phoscyon
- Heavyocity Scoring Bass Gravity Pack 06
If you’re the type of producer that HAS to have a solid bass fill your track, then Loopmasters Bass Master VST is one of the better bass plugins out there. A pair of oscillators lead the way in the Bass Master, offering more than 200 distinct waveforms. Besides that, the plugin comes with both classic and modern bass sounds, making it suitable for just about any creative situation.
You’ll have a lot of professional sounds to work with while using the Bass Master as it comes packed with 350 presets in all. Each comes with a three-slot mod wheel matrix as well as pre-mapped parameters. Sound designers will appreciate the flexibility as there is an LFO, a filter envelope and 13 different filter types. As far as effects are concerned, you can improve the bass tone with processing such as chorus, distortion, to name but a few.
There’s a three-band frequency enhancer available to help you either boost the low-end a little more or get some of the top end out of the sound so that it can cut through the mix. Essentially, you’ve got a fair bit of configuration options, far more than you’ll ever need. No matter what type of bass tone you’re after, Bass Master has plenty of built-in sounds to serve your needs.
- Great bass tones
- Versatile effects section
- Lots of interesting presets to play around with
- Lacks a sequencing section
- Modulation capability is low
If you are searching for a hard-hitting subbass, then consider trying SubLab from the Future Audio Laboratory. This new wave bass synth VST is great for hip-hop, trap, and future bass genres. From classic 808s to strong sub-bass sounds, everything feels punchy and solid on almost every sound source.
The benefit of SubLab is that the workflow is amazingly intuitive. You can sample, layer, distort, widen, and effect any kind of sub for an impactful sound. The psychoacoustic subbass oscillator ensures that the sub will remain consistent and accurate no matter what note you are making.
SubLab’s workflow is incredibly intuitive. For a more powerful tone, you can sample, layer, distort, widen and effect just about sub. The subbass oscillator psychoacoustic ensures the sub will remain consistent and accurate no matter what note you make.
Not only does SubLab come stocked with standard bass tones, you’ll also have 250 classic analog drum machine samples and top notch modular synth sounds, right at your finger tips. There are six signature bass packs in all for just about every type of modern production.
We consider SubLab to be a Frankenstein instrument of sorts, with a powerful X-sub synth combined with analogue synthesizers. SubLab is a must-have for bass heads everywhere, with an intuitive interface and tightly organized layers that help you produce new, chest thumping sounds.
- X-Sub technology provides low-end integrity
- Premium effects bank
- three-layer, Intuitive architecture
- velocity-sensitivity not supported
- the sampler does not provide visible envelopes
For many years, the Minimoog has had a rather large footprint in the music world. From the sweet bass lines of 70’s funk music to the earth-shaking bass of 90s hip-hop, nothing can compare to the sweet tones of a Minimoog.
Although many companies have tried to mimic Minimoog’s iconic sound and design, no company has done it like Arturia. They collaborated with Bob Moog to ensure the synth’s internal characteristics and subtleties remained accurate.
Being a digital version of the original, we should expect a few significant upgrades, am I right? Well, Arturia has in fact done just that – they’ve introduced the TAE technology with a detailed filter design so that you can easily create deep and powerful bass tones. The modulation matrix also features individual filtering destinations, as well as original synth automation.
Offering both classic and current Moog sounds, along with a few more, the preset browser is fantastic and easy to natigavte. The resizable interface makes it a pleasure to work with on just about any display. On top of that, you get a complete integration with the Arturia KeyLab, which is useful if it’s part of your setup. The Arturia Mini V is a perfect alternative for the radical reconstruction of a synth bass classic. The Arturia Mini V provides and excellent alternative for an innovative recreation of a legendary synth bass.
- Preset Library with Loads of amazing presets
- Includes extra sound design features
- A very authentic reproduction of the original
- The Oscillators behave differently than the original
- High CPU usage
By far one of the most creative plug-in companies in the industry is OUTPUT. They are known for a number of groundbreaking synths, such as Pulse, Exhale, and Analog Strings. If you’re on the hunt for a diverse catalog of bass tones, than you’ll be pleasantly surprised with Substance. From highly processed bass synths, to sultry acoustic bass lines, there’s a plethora of interesting sounds for you to choose from, along with some quality analog synths and modern polysynths to boot.
SUBSTANCE the ultimate solution for generating powerful “snowflake” bass sounds that you haven’t heard anywhere else. To get your sound dialed in, you can layer up to 3 separate sound sources before tossing them into a robust section of FX, which comprises multiple parameters for filters, modulation and much more.
This plugin pushes the envelope of what you would expect from standard bass plug-ins, but just don’t expect it to produce the most authentic bass guitar tones. Here’s an idea: If you want that “authentic” sound, just play a real bass guitar over your record.
- Lots of interesting presets to whet your appetite
- Interface is easy to navigate
- Triple layered sound source configuration
- Macros aren’t very beginner-friendly
If you’re into colossal bass tones with serious low-end and high-fidelity organic overtones, then you might want to give the The Softube Monoment Bass a look. Even though the plugin is grate for adding a solid foundation layer, it’s also perfect for topping tacks. The sounds included in the plugin were sampled from rare, high-end, synth classics giving you deep rich colors that can add texture to your tracks.
Included in the design are some built-in effects to provide your bass with even more character, including delay, multiband compression, and a stereo spatialization tool, among others. Beyond that, you get some sounds that were finely tuned by some of the hottest producers in the industry.
You’re not going to get a warm retro sound like you would from other bass emulations on the market, but what you do is get a wide range of modern bass sounds well suited for the producer class of today.
- Expect a lot of good quality presets and patches to play with
- Best suited for modern day genres
- Variety of effects
- No onboard sequencing
- Lack of standard ADSR envelopes
Back in the early 1980’s, the The Roland SH-101 was the go-to analog monosyth for producers.
The 101 had only a single oscillator, one envelope generator, and a simple sequencer. Despite the simplicity of the design, the 101 sounded absolutely unbelievable. Enter TAL Audio, who created their own rendition of the famous synth, but their version was far more capable than they had ever envisioned.
The plugin UI includes individual sliders for different waveforms and a two-pulse width restriction to keep everything accurate. On the left side of the plugin, you’ll find a number of controls that give you the ability to tinker around with portamento, transpose pitch, and even more.
If you’re looking for something truly authentic to the original SH-101, then the TAL BassLine 101 just might be what you’re looking for. We’re extremely impressed with how comparable the plugin sounds to the original unit.
- No feedback delay filter
- Great for those looking for an accurate emulation
- Includes sequencer
- Only one ADSR envelope
If you’re searching for a conventional organic bass plugin, then the SubBoomBass 2 may not be the right plugin for you. Designed by the world-famous Rob Papen, the plugin’s sounds are generated from samples with unusual waveforms, many of which, have been pitched way down. The end result is an easily achievable low-end knock that’ll rattle your ear drums.
Besides the standard features you get in most other virtual instruments, you also get some parameters that are unique to the plugin like Wave Sequence, that allows for some interesting sound manipulation.
In addition, the plugin has an Easy Edit window, that’ll consolidate the parameters to make it easier for you to tweak and reduce any unnecessary confusion. It’s all about helping you do what you do best – create! This makes the plugin super beginner-friendly.
The SubBoomBass2 is an excellent choice for any producer, no matter what type of genre you make.
- Numerous presets to experiment with
- Onboard modulation and step sequencer
- Easy Edit window – great for Novice Producers
- Comes with only one ADSR
The primary goal of the Sugar Bytes Cyclop digital synth is to generate low sounds with fat and changing characteristics.
It enable you to modulate synth and filter settings by picking from a range of LFO shapes, which can all be accomplished at a tempo-synced rate to keep things as natural as possible.
The plugin includes a nice 16-step sequencer as well as an automation recorder, which gives you more options for tweaking your sound. But if that wasn’t enough, you can also import your own samples to be used as wavetables for even more flexibility.
But for those of you who aren’t sound designers, you don’t need to worry because there are an impressive 800+ presets included for you explore.
The Cyclop is a great option for anyone working in the digital realm. You get a number of in-depth editing tools, a monophonic engine, and every conceivable feature you’d expect from a contemporary synthesiser.
- Huge bass sounds
- One-of-a-kind modulation matrix
- Plenty of distinct presets to play with
- Not as flexible as other digital synths
Calling all TB-303 lovers, the Phoscyon from D16 Group is a plugin we think you might love. If you know anything about the history of the TB-303, you know it’s massive influence on genres like acid house to more modern music like EDM.
Although there have been a few attempts, none of them have been successful in replicating the original hardware. With that said, we live in a digital and nomadic world, and it’s unrealistic to carry one of the original units all over the place. That’s why we love the D16 – you can bring it anywhere. Although it’s not 100% accurate, it’s certainly one of the best out there.
Inside the plugin you get a variety of saw and square waves, as well as a clear 18 dB/octave low-pass filter. On top of that, like all other digital recreations, you also get a few more goodies such as a randomizer, an arpeggiator, a sequencer, and top-notch distortion unit.
With this plugin you won’t get a wide selection of sounds like other plugins on our list but that shouldn’t matter if you’re after a high-quality recreation of the original TB-303.
- Faithful emulation of the classic 303
- Additional settings you won’t find on the original hardware unit
- A one trick pony
If scoring films is your forte, then having an earth-shaking bottom end is a must. Heavyocity has made a name for themselves with their unique variety of film scoring plugins, and their Scoring Bass plugin is no exception.
Looking for a fat and dirty bass guitar sound? You got it. This plugin is jam-packed with a number of bass guitar sounds, loops, and a handful of bass guitar VSTs that can be played.
Included in the Gravity Pack 06 is 4GB of pulses, pedals, pads, and sampled playable instruments. There are plenty of components to work with for just about any scoring situation. Browsing through the library will feel like you been given a copy to Hans Zimmer’s personal instrument hard drive.
If a high-quality cinematic Bass VST is what you’re after then the Heavyocity Scoring Bass is worth a look. It goes well beyond a traditional bass VST, and is actually more a kin to a full-blown sound design instrument.
- The library is super Versatile
- The sound design tools are top-notch
- Intuitive GUI
- Nothing we can think of
How Low Can You Go?
I’m sure you’ve noticed just how many options there are out there when it comes to bass guitar VSTs. Each plugin has its own unique set of features and tools. If possible, grab a demo before making your final decision. But either way, we think that any one of the plugins on this list would be a great choice.