When thinking of the human voice, we tend to overlook the fact that it is an instrument in and of itself. One which cannot be replicated no matter how hard we try. This unique attribute perhaps explains why there is a fairly limited amount of choir VSTs in the market.
Indeed, the profound vocal range of male Baritones, combined with the heavenly voice of female sopranos, can truly form the very essence of an entire production.
Several companies have now designed exceptional choir plugins with access to extensive collections. From Hollywood choirs, to children’s ensembles, these libraries will surely take any sinner back to church.
Without further ado, we have put together a list of the best choir VSTs available right now!
Top 8 Choir Plugins
- Soundiron Mercury Boys’ Choir Elements
- Soundiron Requiem Light Symphonic Choir
- EastWest Sounds Hollywood Choirs
- Soundiron Olympus Choir Elements
- Big Fish Audio Aeris: Hybrid Choir Designer
- Cinematique Instruments Interval – Les Femmes
- Strezov Sampling StormChoir Ultimate
- Strezov Sampling Wotan Male Choir
The first thing that comes to mind when describing Soundiron’s Mercury Boys’ Choir Elements is Pink Floyd. Remember the choir of boys singing in the background? Well that is exactly what this package offers. Think clear, crisp, light, yet rich vocals of a 25-boy professional ensemble, known as the Pacific Boychoir. Recorded in a large hall, the setting accentuates the ethereal sound the boys’ pure voices.
This VST includes sustains, marcatos, and staccatos, in addition to four primary vowels: Ah, Eh, Oh, and Oo vowels. You have the option to select these vowels to be played in piano, or forte with a 2x round robin variation. Also recorded chromatically with automatic tempo-syncing is the multi-syllable sustain or staccato latin words variances.
Again, similar to the other Soundiron elements, we see a multitude of audio elements ranging from built-in sound effects to sound-shaping parameters. These elements are meant to add an additional layer of sentimentality attached to the cinematic performance.
- Built-in Wordmaster system
- Proficient round-robin capabilities
- Dynamic and true legato vowels
- Requires significant CPU usage
Another choir VST option offered by Soundiron is the Requiem Light Symphonic Choir. All the choral sounds that you hear in this software were recorded at the San Francisco Montclair Presbyterian Church, and provide epic soundtrack composition and cinematic scoring. Indeed, the church’s architecture and structure played a huge part in helping the talented performers create a sound that is unique and powerful.
If you’re looking to produce ever-changing melodies that shift from fine and detailed, to rich and loud, then this just might be your golden ticket.
Similar to the Soundiron Olympus Choir Elements, the Requiem Light Symphonic Choir also uses the Kontakt Player engine to host a diverse library of true legato vowels, including but not limited to: single-syllable Marcato words, aggressive Latin staccatos, long poly-syllabic Latin sustains, standard staccatos, and the classic sustain. Additionally, as part of the Requiem Light you gain access to different sound design pads such as choral atmospheres, drones, and polysustains – all of which are considered amazing additions when creating ambiant songwriting pieces.
The way the user interface was built is pretty interesting. As opposed a top-down design method, Soundiron engineered it using a bottom-up method in order to facilitate real-time articulation switching and layering, parameter shaping, and section blending. Cherry on top? The Requiem Light includes a fully integrated phrase step sequencer! Not to mention, they included their modular FX rack – complete with 119 reverb spaces.
Still wondering if Requiem Light is right for you? Let’s simplify it. If your main priority is to create cinematic choral arrangements, then what are you waiting for? However, if your focus lies elsewhere, then it might not be the best match for you, so keep on reading!
- Solid interface
- Rich and dynamic sound
- Multitude of effects
- Another CPU Hog
The EastWest Sounds Hollywood Choirs is essentially a reformation of the EastWest Sounds Symphonic Choirs VST, with a specific focus on Blockbuster film scoring. Hollywood Choirs includes both male and female choirs, helping to bring about exceptional sounds that are bound to revolutionize any given piece.
Featuring an innovative software called the WordBuilder 2, Hollywood Choirs allows the musician to input phrases, words, or sentences that are then transformed into choral vocals sung by the choir. Amazing isn’t it? What’s more, is if you are not really sure of what you want the choir to sing, no problem! You actually have the option to choose from 781 pre-built and editable WordBuilder phrases in different languages from English, Spanish, Italian and many more.
Splurge on the Diamond Edition and are you are looking at 13 microphone user-controllable setups, which make a huge difference for virtual reality and/or surround sound performances, but you are also getting exceptional 3D soundscapes. This combination of elements will make your listeners transcend into another cinematic dimension.
When narrowing it down and comparing it to other VSTs, the EastWest Sounds Hollywood Choir is the perfect blend of flexibility and dynamic range.
- Wide range of male and female choral vocals
- Ingenious WordBuilder software
- A complete range of dynamics with mod control
- Lacks portamento Legato transitions
- Not beginner-friendly
Soundiron’s Olympus Choir Elements offers a powerful symphonic bundle of Mars Men’s and Venus Women’s choir collections. These collections were recorded at the San Francisco Montclair Presbyterian Church with groups of choirs made up of 30 men and 33 women. The result: over 45GB of Latin and Slavonic samples!
The fact that these collections are powered by Kontakt, makes it all that more appealing if you are a Native Instruments aficionado. The plugin also uses a wide and close stage microphone blend and covers all eight core vowel articulations.
By using divisi, you can easily rearrange and control the choir dynamics by separating the male and the female parts! Indeed, the combination of the pp-ff dynamic layering combined with the intelligent round robin gives you full command of all articulations including sustain, staccato, and marcato.
Additionally, the plugin’s choir sample library offers a multitude of innovative vocal effects that offer an improvement and/or alternative to the standard choral sounds. Some of these vocal effects include swells, sweeps, whispers, and shouts, among many others. What is more, the library’s performance presets can be configured by using the onboard EQ controls, and/or selecting from the 50 custom convolution reverbs.
All these powerful features make the Olympus Choir Elements VST more suitable for the music industry professional who wants a piece of software that enables them to have complete choral control.
- Extraordinary choral sounds
- Fully automatable interface
- CPU hog
One of the main features of Big Fish Audio Aeris is that it meshes the voices of solo singers, with male and female backing choirs. All the performers were multi-sampled, using a range of different voices, including Ah, Oh, and Oo vocals, as well as hums.
Want to customise beyond simple vocal patches? There are a range of sound design tools available to help you build beautiful spaces and customise your choral sound. For a more distinct tone, there are four different LFOs that you can add modulation to. To help spread and mix your different layers, you can also use high pass, low pass, bandpass, volume, pan and pitch. There are dual sequencers that make the creation of complex patterns a breeze, as well as eight unique effects to help you shatter the sound design barrier.
- Customization features are endless
- Light on CPU!
- Envelope Controls for easy breezy mixing
- solo and choir vocals cannot be used in one instance of the plugin
Looking for uniqueness? You’ve come to the right place! Cinematique Instruments is one of the more exceptional choir VSTs out there. The carefully selected female voices of Insa, Mel, and Basiaa have created a detailed and delicately personal piece of software.
The plugin allows you to make use of the layering feature in order to bring about a more intimate choral experience. And while there are only 3 voices in this choir plugin, Cinematique recorded each of the female voices using different articulations – meaning the women use different intonations, inhalations, and intimate notes. However, when combined, the three voices bring into being the true essence of powerful choir vocals.
While you can undoubtedly use this VST within the cinematic, as well as choral circles, we highly recommend it for modern pop backing vocals, experimental mumbling, and/or textured vocal harmonies.
The built-in presets such as EQ, reverb, delay, attack and release, and an LFO make it easy to load up a patch and tweak it to your heart’s content. So if you are looking to compose more intimate, and flexible choral pieces, Les Femmes should definitely be on your list of choral VSTs to explore further!
- Unique feminine tones
- High quality vocal recordings
- Does not work well with forte sounds
While Strezov undoubtedly offers some of the most diverse and professional choral products available in the market, the StormChoir Ultimate is possibly one of our favorite. This 12-piece chamber choir includes six men and six women who were recorded separately in order to allow for greater flexibility during composition. And despite the fact that it is a chamber choir, the absolute intensity of the sound created is mesmerizing. Maybe this can be attributed to the fact that the choir focuses mainly on the Slavonic molto vibrato tone.
In fact, with 24 Slavic syllables to choose from, by accessing key switches or the onboard Phase Builder, you can put together such a unique choral sound that is clearly distinguishable from the standard Latin syllables found on most choir VSTs.
However, in our opinion, the stand out feature of the StormChoir Ultimate is the ferocity of the staccatos, suitable for composing eipic trailers. Lest we forget the sustain, which comes with an innovative “tighten” dial that proves to be quite useful for shortening samples, or strengthening the attack.
Although the StormChoir Ultimate user interface isn’t anything special, it is easy on the eyes and simple to operate. In other words, the way in which the tabs and buttons have been designed, helps in cutting down the time needed to find the adequate spaces for each of the layers. You can easily add additional samples to notes that are already played by using the “stack” button, which works well to thicken your tone.
We recommend this choir VST plugin to those seeking to compose more distinguished and intense masterpieces, that do not necessarily require the usage of softer sounds.
- Massive sound for a chamber choir
- Intuitive and practical GUI
- Unique Slavic sounds
- Vibrato on pianissimo samples can be distracting
Another choir VST we would like to highlight from Strezov is the Wotan Male Choir. This VST is considered to be one of the most revered sounds in the film industry – the Khazad-dum male choir, inspired by the Lord of the Rings soundtrack. Made up of ten tenors and ten basses, this VST is bound to add a touch of choral intensity to any movie score.
One of the features of Wotan is that it combines sample recording of phrase building for convenience with the fully customizable functionality of word building.. This option simplifies the creation of new sample content allowing you to build choral patterns, as well as connect different syllables, which can then be used to modify your very own choral compositions.
If that wasn’t enough: the Wotan Male Choir enables you to use the Agile Legato technique to play each and every syllable in the provided library using legato articulation – also known as Syllabuilding.
And the icing on the cake you ask? You can create polyphonic arrangements using intelligent voice leading. All you have to do is press a chord down on the left, and simultaneously play a melody on the right. You’ll notice that the legato transitions will immediately start to connect.
- Intense cinematic sound
- True legato for smooth and melodic movement
- Excellent word building features
- Limited syllabic range
- Manual is a bit too technical
Do I Hear Angels From Above?
Want to trick your listener into thinking that you spent thousands of dollars recording a hundred person choral ensemble? Then get one of the high quality choir VSTs on our list – that should do the trick!