Since the 808 got its breakthrough in the 1980s, it has become increasingly popular in modern music.
Today the iconic sound can be heard everywhere and is an established piece in almost every music producer’s sound toolkit.
But as a music producer, choosing the right 808 sound for your music project can be tricky sometimes.
So how do you find the best 808 VST plugin?
In this article, we’ll go through some of our top picks.
What Is An 808?
The 808 sound is originally born on the electronic percussion instrument TR 808 from Roland.
It is widely known for its hard deep low-end punch, which can get everybody in the club on the dancefloor.
But the 808 is more than kick and hard sub-bass since the sound also has claps, hi-hats, and percussion.
You can get the classic 808 sound from the TR 808 or various VST plugins and sound banks.
Let’s jump to the fun stuff and look at some of the best 808 VSTs.
What are the best 808 VST plugins?
On the market, you can find various 808 VST plugins, each of which has a sound entirely on its own.
Choosing the VST that best meets your needs is not always straightforward; fortunately, We have created a list of the five best plugins to assist you in making your pick.
1. Future Audio Workshop – Sublab
Sublab is our number-one go-to for great 808 sounds.
The VST plugin is made by Future Audio Workshop and can produce sub and 808 basses that cover all of your needs.
It has three bass/sub engines with many controls: a synthesizer/oscillator, sampler, and an “x-sub,” which allows bass frequencies to be solidified.
There is a mixer near the bottom of the VST where you can determine the volume of each engine.
There are three envelopes: volume, filter, and pitch.
- Volume: Adjust the attack, sustain, decay, and release of the sound.
- Filter: Different filter types – lowpass, bandpass and highpass.
- Pitch: Add a quick pitch modulation at the beginning of the sound, where you can tune and detune the sound.
Another great feature is importing your audio samples and modulating them in the VST however you want.
- Eight-octave pitch range
- ADSR controls
- Filter and volume knob for blending purposes
- SubLab sampler engine with over 250 one-hit samples
- Sample parameters like start time or distortion level adjustable
- Sample loop controls to add or remove sustain
- X-Sub oscillator to generate low-frequency synth between 30Hz and 260Hz
- Two sub-signals with gain control and alternate notation for each one.
- Import your drum sounds and turn them into 808s, bass, or sub kicks.
2. Xfer – Serum
The Serum VST plugin by Xfer can be used virtually to create any kind of electronic music genre and comes with a huge amount of features.
Wavetables, modulations, and nice-sounding filters are some of this VST plugin’s cool features.
You can also create custom LFOs and envelopes, which makes it great for sound designing drums and sounds for your sample packs.
We have used this tool for creating 808s as well, which offers limitless opportunities.
- Filters: 75 filter options
- Built-in effects: Delay, Reverb, Flanger, Phaser, Chorus, Compressor, EQ, Distortion, Hyper Dimension, and Filter.
- Modulation: Envelopes, Macro Controls and LFO.
- 64-bit VST, AU, or AAX compatible.
- Windows or Mac.
3. Callybeat – HUM808
This free 808 and bass plugin is the one that most closely resembles Sublab out of all the other free plugins in those categories.
When it comes to producing 808-style bass sounds, Hum808 is a good solution for several different reasons.
To begin, it possesses various amount of presets that are easily modifiable in order to create any sound one might desire.
Furthermore, it includes a distortion effect that can be applied to the sound to give it additional punch.
And finally, it has a user-friendly interface and a waveform visualizer, both of which are helpful when adjusting the sound.
Please take note that the HUM808 is only compatible with Windows.
- Three oscillators: This allows for a greater range of sounds and flexibility in shaping your 808.
- Different envelopes: This lets you customize the attack, decay, and sustain of your 808 sound for a more tailored tone.
- Different filters: This gives you more sonic options and helps you find the perfect tone for your track.
- Distortion effect: This can give your 808 sound extra punch and power.
- 2 oscillators with selectable waveforms
- ADSR envelope controls for amplitude, pitch cut, and LFO
- Spectrum analyzer
- 4-band parametric equalizer
4. Thenatan – X-EIGHT 808
The X-EIGHT 808 VST sounds great and is a fantastic choice for an 808 VST in your library.
In addition to eliminating the need to guess the right tone or spend time editing sounds, it is also highly accurate in pitch and compatible with numerous digital audio workstations.
We definitely recommend this VST when you are working on some Trap/Hip-hop.
- Over 1000 presets.
- Pitch-perfect – easily find the right tone for your track.
- Amplitude which controls harmonics.
- Filters & Reverbs.
- Source: Mod wheel, aftertouch, LFO, and velocity.
- Destination: Pitch, expression, or pan.
- LFO rate & depth.
- Windows/ Mac OS Compatible.
- 24-bit and 48kHz high-definition samples.
- Compatible with most digital audio workstations, except for Pro Tools.
5. Producers Choice – 808 Warfare
It is highly recommended that any music producer who wants to give their tracks massive and epic 808 basses use the 808 Warfare plugin.
This plugin comes with more than 169 key-specifically tuned WAV samples and 41 different Kontakt patches to choose from.
Because of this, locating the perfect 808 samples for your track can be done in a snap.
You do not need to modify the patches because they have already been combined and processed to perfection on their own.
Simply loading the plugin, playing out your bassline, and cycling through the patches are all required to find the perfect clean sub-bass or 808 for your track.
But that’s not even the whole story. In addition, the 808 Warfare plugin provides options for equalization, compression, and transient shaping, all of which work together to make your 808s sound as good as possible.
Using this plugin, you can generate earth-shatteringly powerful basslines that will shake your subs and move your walls.
As a result, if you want to make sure that your 808s are of the highest possible quality, you should look into purchasing the 808 Warfare plugin sound bank for the Kontakt player.
- Kontakt & WAV format.
- 41 Kontakt Patches in total.
- ALSO INCLUDES – 169 WAV format 808 kicks and basses.
- Over 169 WAV samples & 41 Kontakt patches.
- The sounds are pitched perfectly to match your keys.
- The sounds are mixed and processed in high quality, so there is no need to tweak them.
Read our in-depth review of 808 Warfare here.
Of course, these are only a few of the best-sounding 808 and bass VST plugins that we find extremely useful; in addition, many others are capable of simulating the distinctive 808 sound.
Experiment with a wide range of plugins until you locate the one that enhances the sound of your music the most.