11 Best Choir VST Plugins 2024


Best Choir VST Plugins

The sound of a choir is practically a staple in TV, film, and video game scores.

But the dirty secret is that many composers leverage pre-built choir libraries and sound designed elements as building blocks for their scores, as opposed to hiring an entire choir and booking an expensive hall to fulfill on the demands of their projects.

In this guide, we look at the best choir VST plugins you can use for your scoring, producing, and songwriting needs.

Aeris: Hybrid Choir Designer by Vir2 Instruments – Best Overall

Aeris: Hybrid Choir Designer by Vir2 Instruments – Best Overall

Vir2 Instruments’ Aeris: Hybrid Choir Designer offers a combination of choirs, solo singers, and sound design elements.

This baby features multi-sampled singers performing Ah, Oh, and Oo vowels as well as hums. Vir2 also worked with leading sound designers to offer up some amazing vocal pads.

They also provided sound design tools you can use to customize your own sounds – four LFOs with the ability to modulate volume, pan, low pass, high pass, bandpass, and pitch, as well as a dual sequencer for pattern creation, and eight effects.

Altogether, you’re getting six vocal groups (with bass, tenor, male choir, female choir, alto, and soprano), four vowel performances (Ah, Oh, Oo, Hums), true legato recording, 146 custom pads, four individual and customizable LFO slots, two step sequencer slots, Komplete Control and Maschine integration, the ability to manipulate your samples with the User patch, and over 10 GB of uncompressed content.

Aeris is a great premium solution for a variety of applications, which is why we’ve selected it as our best overall option.

Get it for Windows or Mac. Kontakt is required.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Mars Symphonic Men’s Choir by Soundiron – Best Premium Option

Mars Symphonic Men’s Choir by Soundiron – Best Premium Option

Now here’s a “kitchen sink” male choral ensemble library. Soundiron’s Mars Symphonic Men’s Choir is high quality, detailed, and very playable.

In developing this monstrosity, Soundiron took everything they learned from past projects and channeled it all into the creation of this, Mars Symphonic Men’s Choir.

There’s plenty of content here, including a wide range of Latin, Russian (Slavonic) and pure vowel content, a full set of chromatic articulations (sustains, marcatos, staccatos, true legato, clusters, falls, swells, effects, and a trio of male soloists).

This plugin was recorded over 10 days at Montclair Presbyterian with 30 hand-picked singers from SF Opera, SF Symphony Chorus, Volti, and SF Choral Society.

Mars Symphonic Men’s Choir includes a marcato builder (seven vowel sustain types with multiple variations and 42 independently selectable attack syllables and 42 release sounds, each with independent round-robin and automation ready controls), as well as a combined marcato / staccato phrase builder.

You also get 42 marcatos with round robin, 26 staccatos with round robin, Kontakt 5 tempo-synching for polysustain presets, Kontakt 5 time-stretching for choral effects, Kontakt 5 legato speed control (from legato to slow portamento), 69 polysustains, five true legato vowels, choral shouts, effects, drones, war chants, and yells.

In the soloist corner, you’ve got one master bass soloist and two tenor soloists in Slavonic and Latin, 10 standard slow polysustains, a variety of solo staccatos, true-melodic polysustains, Kontakt 5 time-stretching for choral effects and emotional solo phrases, and more.

We’re not playing any favorites by making this our premium selection, because the Venus Symphonic Women’s Choir plugin appears a little later, and the two integrate perfectly with each other.

Get it for Windows or Mac. The full version of Kontakt is required.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Elvish Choir by Soundiron – Best Budget Option

Elvish Choir by Soundiron – Best Budget Option

Whether you’re looking to have a laugh, or need something for the holiday season, Soundiron’s highly rated and super affordable Elvish Choir is sure to check those boxes.

Just as it sounds, Elvish Choir features rowdy elves singing as an ensemble. You’ve got sustains, short staccatos, and long staccatos / semi-marcatos in multiple dynamics. You’ve also got shout / yelp impacts, to comedic effect.

Soundiron says they put together the whole thing with a bit of helium and some spiced seasonal ale. And for all intents and purposes, this appears to be true.

They even threw in Solo Doo and La articulations, public domain Christmas song phrases (“Deck the Halls” and “Jingle Bells”), and ambiences using the source material. The samples were also remastered with added features, as well as 20 new custom FX presets.

And they give you a lot of control too – attack, release, swell, offset, vibrato, filter, pitch (coarse and fine), articulation switching, crossfading, layering, and more.

There’s also 20 sound designed custom FX presets, LFO system with LFO shape, modulation target parameter, speed, intensity, tempo-syncing, fade-in time, 12 lowpass, high-pass, and FX filters with assignable modulation targets (velocity, modwheel, expression, after touch, key position, and step sequencer table control).

There’s even an arpeggiator with velocity table, arp direction, timing, swing, randomization, and duration. There’s a key and scale lock system to keep notes in common keys and scales.

Then you’ve still got the FX rack panel, featuring 18 DSP effect modules you can assign to 10 slots in any order. Phaser, flanger, delay, distortion, amp and cab sims, compressors, EQ, rotator, and other effects are onboard.

The reverb comes with convolution reverb impulse responses (99 rooms, halls, chambers, outdoor environments), and there are an additional 40 custom FX impulses.

This thing is over the top!

All in all, you get one master NKI instrument bank in open Kontakt format, elf staccatos, sustains, effects, balloon pops, Christmas song phrases, 20 ambience patches, 24 bit / 48 kHz uncompressed PCM WAV samples, 20 custom sound designed FX and ambient presets, 569 stereo WAV files, LFO, and FX rack.

Elvish Choir is Windows and Mac compatible, and it requires the full version of Kontakt.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Venus Symphonic Women’s Choir by Soundiron

Venus Symphonic Women’s Choir by Soundiron

Venus Symphonic Women’s Choir is a 33-voice female choral library. It comes with vowels, Latin and Slavonic (Orthodox Russian) content, choral effects (shouts, sweeps, clusters, whispers, drones, and others).

The talent pool consists of select SF Symphony Chorus, Volti, and SF Choral Society members. There are two mic positions (stage and hall) for added flexibility.

This entry is the perfect complement to the Mars Symphonic Men’s Choir plugin.

Symphonic Women’s Choir comes with 26.7 GB of content, 25,730 samples, 406 Kontakt NKI patches, 120 Kontakt NKM multi-instrument patches, 24 bit / 48 kHz uncompressed WAV audio, open format, and a bonus collection of ambiences, drones, textures, and FX content with custom convolution impulses in every preset.

The choral features include two room positions from a blend of 12 large diaphragm Neumann mics, Marcato builder system, combined marcato / staccato phrase builder with preset saving, 36 marcatos with deep round-robin and PP / FFF dynamic layering.

You also get 48 staccatos with 4x round-robin and PP / FFF dynamic layering on eight vowels, 18 Slavonic 100 BPM slow polysustains with tempo-synching, legato, and two RR releases, 12 Slavonic 140 BPM fast polysustains with tempo-synching, legato and two RR releases, 10 Latin 100 BPM slow polysustains with tempo-synching, legato, and two RR release.

Additionally, 21 whispered polysustains with tempo-synching, plus staccatos and mercatos (dissonant, harmonic, and tonal spoken), four dynamic layered PP/FF true legato vowels (Ah, Eh, Oh, Oo), soft PPP “Mmm” with true legato, sustaining half and whole-note trills with tempo-synching are included.

You’ll also find a collection of choral shouts, risers, falls, sweeps, swells, clusters, and other effects, 21 unique sustaining vowels (ah, ay, eh, ee, ih, mm, oh, oo, and others) with up to four round-robin variations on attack, sustain, and release, “Amazing Grace” building blocks, 406 individual NKI presets, and 120 additional combo close / far NKM presets.

Soloists include two soprano soloists and three alto soloists in Slavonic and Latin, one alto and soprano articulation for each language, and a variety of staccatos, polysustains, trills, whisper effects, and melodic phrases.

If that wasn’t enough, you get tempo-synching and time-stretching presets, custom ambient soundscapes, drones, pads, and atmospheres, integrated DSP effects and custom convolution presets, and a fully automatable user interface.

Venus Symphony Women’s Choir is for Windows and Mac and requires the full version of Knotakt 5.1.0 or above.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Requiem Light Symphonic Choir by Soundiron

Requiem Light Symphonic Choir by Soundiron

Soundiron’s Requiem Light Symphonic Choir was created as a professional symphonic choir library. Offering up epic, mix-ready, cinematic, cathedral choir sounds, this choir VST is perfect for detailed melodic material.

Requiem Light Symphonic Choir comes with three true legato vowels, various classic vowel sustains and staccatos, single-syllable Marcato words, long poly-syllabic Latin sustains, fast and aggressive Latin staccatos, as well as classic and creative dynamic choral effects.

In addition to the choral samples, you’ve also got solo soprano and tenor polysustains, and even some sound designed drones, pads, and choral atmospheres.

Requiem Light Symphonic Choir comes complete with real-time articulation layering and switching, legato, customizable section bending, syllable and phrase step sequencer, and a modular FX rack with 119 custom reverb spaces.

The sounds heard in this library were recorded at Saint Paul’s in San Francisco. The choir was conducted by the award-winning Robert Geary with members from SF Symphony Chorus, Volti, SF Opera, and San Francisco Choral Society.

12 large diaphragm mics were used to capture the choir, which was mixed and mastered into a balanced stereo image.

Altogether, Requiem Light Symphonic Choir comes with 4,243 24 bit / 44.1 kHz lossless NCW format samples, 4.72 GB of content, 14 nki Kontakt instrument presets, and bonus sound designed material derived from the source.

This choir VST is compatible with Windows and Mac and requires the full or free version of Kontakt. Requiem Light Symphonic Choir supports all Komplete Kontrol hardware and software.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

EXHALE by Output

EXHALE by Output

Output’s EXHALE modern vocal engine was designed to meet the needs of the modern producer.

Real singers and a choir were recorded with top producers. The sounds were meticulously tweaked for six months with 25 sound designers using analog and vintage gear, tape machines, vocoders, and so on. The engine also features modulation, tempo synced FX, pitch shifting, and other effects.

The EXHALE engine comes with three modes – Notes (chromatic), Loops (looping), and Slices (sliced phrases). You can quickly dial in your sound using the four macro sliders, or fine tune the modulation, mixing, and effects on the Engines page.

All in all, EXHALE comes with 500 presets, three modes, 10 GB of raw material, custom FX presets, custom macros per preset, NKS support, snapshots for Maschine, macro editing, main and engine pages, and automatable insert and mod FX.

You can get EXHALE for Windows and Mac, and it was made for Kontakt Player.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Mercury Boys’ Choir Elements by Soundiron

Mercury Boys’ Choir Elements by Soundiron

Mercury Boys’ Choir Elements features hand-selected elements from the more expansive Mercury Symphonic Boys’ Choir.

The samples were recorded with a 25-voice boys’ choral ensemble with Pacific Boychoir. There are sustains, staccatos, marcatos for the primary, Ah, Eh, Oh, and Oo vowels, piano and forte dynamics with 2x round-robin variations per note, and polyphonic true legato for Ah and Oo sounds in piano and forte.

You also get multi-syllable chromatic Latin sustains and staccato words with automatic tempo synching, children’s choral effects, sound designed choral pads and atmospheres, as well as sound shaping parameters and FX features.

Mercury Boys’ Choir Elements is compatible with Windows and Mac and requires the free Kontakt Player.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Olympus Choir Elements by Soundiron

Olympus Choir Elements by Soundiron

Olympus Choir Elements is the compact version of the 63-voice Olympus Symphonic Choir.

Ah, Ee, Eh, Ei, Ih, Mm, Oh, and Oo vowels were recorded using a close stage blend microphone configuration.

Olympus Choir Elements comes with a full men’s and women’s divisi sections, eight major vowel sustains and releases, eight major vowel staccatos and marcatos, configurable simulated legato, true divisi legato for Ah and Oo, and adjustable interval speed, range, polyphony, and intensity for legato features.

You’ve also got vowel-based choral FX, Vowelmaster preset, Phrasemaster preset, offset, attack, and release controls, swell and blend controls, release time and volume controls, independent pan controls, bonus special FX presets, 50+ custom reverb impulses, ensemble and divisi preset types, 12 bonus atmospheric and custom FX instrument presets, and more.

Altogether, there are 3,061 24 bit / 48 kHz lossless NCW format samples, 2.52 GB of content, 53 NKI Kontakt instrument presets, as well as Komplete Knotrol and S-Series keyboard compatibility.

Get it for Windows and Mac. You’ll need Kontakt Player.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Olympus Choir Micro by Soundiron

Olympus Choir Micro by Soundiron

As the name would suggest, Olympus Choir Micro is the introductory compilation of the Olympus Symphonic Choral Collection. That said, for basic choir needs, this VST will do the trick.

Olympus Choir Micro has been organized into matching men’s and women’s divisi sections. You’ve got the essential “Ah” and “Oo” vowel sustains, pad modes, synchronized Latin and Russian sustain words (polysustains), and even Ah and Oo staccato syllables.

The choir was recorded with 63 especially selected singers from Volti, SF Choral Society, SF Opera, and SF Symphony Chorus with conductor Robert Geary.

Altogether, you get full men’s and women’s divisi sections with editable key ranges, 100 BPM Latin “Dominum” chromatic polysustain chants with release syllable, 140 BPM Russian “Raduisya” chromatic polysustain chants with release syllable, Oo PP vowel sustains with releases, Ah FF vowel sustains with releases, and Oo and Ah staccatos.

You also get offset, attack, and release controls, automatic polysustain host tempo-synching for Kontakt 5 presets, swell control, independent release timing and release volume controls, simulated divisi and dual layer polyphonic legato with customizable controls and pan controls for each divisi section.

There’s also bonus special FX presets for pads and soundscapes, per-section and per-layer legato with adjustable speed, interval-range, and gliss intensity, 10 special FX impulses, 10 reverb impulses (halls, cathedrals, churches, studios, bunkers, garages, etc.), three-band parametric EQ with sweepable mid, master full ensemble presets, section presets with dual layer blending, crossfading, and phrase morphing, and five bonus atmospheric FX presets.

Olympus Choir Micro is good to go for Windows and Mac and requires Kontakt.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Mercury Boys’ Choir Micro by Soundiron

Mercury Boys’ Choir Micro by Soundiron

If you hadn’t noticed already, yeah, Mercury Boys’ Choir is available in multiple versions. Here we have Mercury Boys’ Choir Micro, the compact English boys’ choir ensemble starter kit. Great for getting a taste of more expansive versions, or for taking advantage of a minimal set of features.

In this library, essential Ah and Oo vowels come complete with piano and forte versions, and two sustaining, tempo-sync-able articulations.

25 singers from the Pacific Boychoir are featured here, and they were recorded with a close mic position. The hall offers up a bright and open sound with just a bit of reverberation.

In this collection, you’ve got three standard presets, 17 FX presets, attack, release, transient start offset, dynamic swelling, layer blend, panning, tempo sync, pad mode, key range, vibrato, legato, three-band EQ, and reverb (with 50 impulse responses).

Windows and Mac versions are available, and you can use the library with the free Kontakt Player.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

The Pentodian Resonator Choir by Loot Audio

The Pentodian Resonator Choir by Loot Audio

The Pentodian Resonator Choir features 12 unique synthetic choirs created from 215 hand crafted vocal formants.

Roughly half of the samples were created using discrete circuits and vintage lab gear processed with vintage analog and tube technology.

The four-voice layering engine comes complete with The Celestial Choirs, which simply started off as a series of short pulses stemming from an analog lab signal generator.

Two of the four choirs were created by feeding a brass organ stop from a 1972 Eminent 310U into a 1978 Polymoog resonator section.

A solo vocal effect was also created using a triode-based relaxation oscillator.

For all the details of this wild science experiment, you’ll certainly want to check out the product description as well.

Altogether, The Pentodian Resonator Choir comes with 215 24-bit samples, 12 hand-made multi-sampled resonator choirs, four-voice layering engine with saving ability, 12 editable example instrument patches, and eight example layered multi patches.

While this affordable and unique choir VST plugin probably won’t be for everyone, it features a very ethereal sound that could be perfect as a complement to sampled choirs. For what it is, this thing sounds fantastic.

The Pentodian Resonator Choir is available for Windows and Mac and requires the full version of Kontakt to work.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

What Should I Look For In A Choir VST Plugin?

Choir VST plugins are quite sophisticated nowadays. From affordable, comedic, and surprisingly powerful Elvish solutions all the way over to high-priced, premium, top quality sample libraries, there are quite a few choices worth considering when shopping for the best, too.

The main things to think about when shopping for a choir VST plugin is:

  • Sound quality
  • Features
  • Budget

Here’s an explanation of each.

Sound Quality

Sound should be considered first and foremost when it comes to shopping for a choir VST plugin.

Besides the recording methods, processing methods, and talent used, at this stage, it would be wise to consider the type of choir that best suits your project too – men’s, women’s, mixed, boys, as well as whether you need soloists.

Generally, the more you pay, the better the samples are. That doesn’t mean you always need to spring for the most expensive plugins, though, because there can be happy compromises with any project, and even some of the more affordable options are quite capable too.

How the choir sits in a mix is another worthy consideration. How much mixing will you need to do on your part, if any? The less you need to do, the more efficient the process will ultimately be. But that isn’t always better, either, because some producers like to tweak and optimize.

Have a good listen to each of the VST plugins you’re considering. In most cases, there are plenty of video demos and reviews as well as audio samples for you to peruse.

Features

Some of the most common features of a choir VST plugin include articulations, sound design content, modulation, effects, sequencer, arpeggiator, presets, and subsets thereof.

Generally, the more options you have, the more you can customize the sound. For some, this will be a godsend. For others, it will be too much fiddling to be worthwhile.

So, even when it comes to features, it largely comes down to what you need. Considering the types of projects, you’re taking on (and planning to take on), what would make the most sense to you?

Don’t forget that even “dry” choir sounds can still be processed using your favorite tools. Sometimes integrated options are quite powerful, CPU efficient, and useful though.

Budget

From about $7 to $400, you can spend a good chunk of change on a choir VST plugin depending on what you need for your project.

Composers may find themselves springing for higher priced, premium options depending on the types of projects they’re taking on.

A producer could probably fulfill on most duties with a middle of the road choir VST plugin.

Meanwhile, songwriters may only require a VST that does the bare minimum.

These are generalizations, of course, and this logic won’t always apply to the purchase.

Nonetheless, we always encourage you to consider your budget before jumping headlong into a purchase. It should inform your buying decisions.

Under no circumstance do we advise going into debt to purchase a VST plugin. If you require a higher price option, then save up for the purchase.

Do I Need Kontakt If I’m Going To Be Using Choir VST Plugins?

Basically, yes.

There are, however, two versions of Kontakt.

The first is Kontakt Player, which is free. Not all the above plugins work with Kontakt Player, but some do.

The other, of course, is the full version of Kontakt. Some of the above plugins only work with this, the premium version.

Kontakt costs a solid chunk of change, to be sure, but it’s also very feature rich. Composers will certainly want to consider working within the Kontakt ecosystem, given that many of the best sample libraries / virtual instruments take advantage of the Kontakt framework.

Top Choir VST Plugins, Final Thoughts

In the absence of a great hall, great singers, a great conductor, and a great producer, VST choir plugins are the way to go. You get access to high quality sounds without having to do all the hard, expensive work yourself.

Assuming you’ve done your homework, you should be happy with the plugin(s) you’ve landed on. Be sure to remove it from its digital box and take it for a virtual spin, because the discoveries that come from experimentation will serve as solid building blocks to your future projects.

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