10 Best VST Plugins To Make Melodies 2024


Best VST Plugins To Make Melodies

Melody. Say what you will about making killer beats, laying down a driving bass, or finding a lush synth pad. Melody is most songs’ “make it or break it” moment. It will either bring the song to new levels or ruin the tune, with shades of grey in between.

So, you need to make a melody. But you feel stuck. Or maybe you feel like you keep relying on the same tired formulas. It’s time to hammer your way through the glass ceiling and take your game beyond.

This guide looks at the best VST plugins to make melodies with.

Hype: Future Sounds by DopeSONIX – Best Overall

Hype: Future Sounds by DopeSONIX – Best Overall

The meeting place of hip-hop, lo-fi, EDM, and future bass – all of them, but none of them.

DopeSONIX’ Hype: Future Sounds features 300 presets, 100 key-labeled MIDI files (melodies, chord progression, basslines), controls (pitch, pan, glide, gain), analog style reverb, high pass and low pass filter, several modes (mono, poly, legato), stereo output level meter, and ADSR controls.

Included in this virtual instrument are an array of 8-bit, arps, bass, keys, leads, pads, vox, and modern FX presets that will take you into the future of music production.

If you’re making electronic music in any capacity, you will probably love these features.

We chose Hype: Future Sounds as our best overall pick because of the included MIDI files for constructing your song ideas. That said, there are many other valuable and worthwhile tools in this guide, so if this one’s not your style, keep reading…

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

AEON Melodic by Heavyocity – Best Premium Option

AEON Melodic by Heavyocity – Best Premium Option

Heavyocity makes an impression with their weighty Kontakt instruments, and AEON Melodic is another hefty entry that’s worthy of your attention.

But what is it, exactly? AEON Melodic comes with 25 GB of organic and synth one-shots, arpeggios, and melodic instruments – traditional, orchestral, and ethnic.

The gigantic library features 9,800+ samples and 315 presets. The sounds are highly customizable, with an arpeggiator, trigger FX, and modulation settings.

The Master FX section includes drive, delay, mod, and convolution. Each effect comes with four parameters you can tweak to taste. There’s even a “Punish” knob for adding an edge to your sound – compression, saturation, and distortion.

The interface is composer- and sound-designer-focused. The layout is intuitive, and it gives you plenty of control over the sounds without ever having to leave the GUI.

Altogether, AEON Melodic features an impressive 25+ GB stature, with over 9,800 samples, 315 NKIs, 70 deep sampled organic presets, 78 synth presets, 29 hybrid presets, 124 arpeggiator presets, 39 signature AEON hits, effects, modulation, arpeggiator, and advanced trigger FXTM.

If you’re looking to create impressive and inspiring melodies, let Heavyocity do the heavy lifting for you. AEON Melodic is very capable, whether for scoring and cinematic music, electronic, or otherwise.

AEON Melodic requires Kontakt 5 Player and works on Windows or Mac machines.

AEON Melodic is our best premium selection, and its price certainly reflects this fact. But its overall quality and feature set is worthwhile, especially if you like what you’re hearing.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Splendosa by Klevgrand – Best Budget Option

Splendosa by Klevgrand – Best Budget Option

In creating Splendosa, Klevgrand collaborated with Wintergatan / Martin Molin. The result is a music box virtual instrument for creating minimal melodies.

Considering its humble price point, Splendosa comes with several valuable features for achieving a variety of sounds – four models (Vintage, Modern, Antique, Eternal = Reversed), two room models, and an algorithmic reverb.

Wintergatan used an acoustic guitar as a resonance box for the music box. In his own words, this is an incredible-sounding instrument, one that is far more useful than your average music box.

Whether in a mix or as a solo instrument, whether in cinematic scores or electronic music, Splendosa exhibits plenty of potentials. Check it out for yourself and see what you think.

Splendosa is our best budget selection.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

SEQUND by 510k

SEQUND by 510k

The SEQUND polyrhythmic sequencer is a powerful tool for creating basslines, rhythmic patterns, melodies, and more.

This sequencer will give you control over an array of parameters – length, hold, chance, gate, pitch A, pitch B, probability A/B, transpose, octave, and three MIDI CC lanes. SEQUND also includes positive and negative swing, two types of step advance modes, and up to 12 patterns per preset.

Its most inspiring feature of all, though, is probably its randomization feature. With this tool, you can generate sequences instantly, without barely lifting a finger. Plus, there are presets via Arno, Alexander Kowalski, Christian Burkhardt, Cristi Cons, Goldmoon, Janeret, and many others.

Fundamentally, SEQUND can take the guesswork out of creating creative rhythmic melodies.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Scaler 2+ Bundle by Plugin Boutique

Scaler 2+ Bundle by Plugin Boutique

If creating melodies and chord progressions aren’t your strong suit, Plugin Boutique’s Scaler 2+ Bundle is for you.

This music theory workstation comes with a built-in sequencer, audio and MIDI detection (which helps establish your musical key and scale), a Chord Create / Editor mode, Chord Charts, Suggest Mode, chord variations, voice grouping, keys lock, modulation suggestions, export MIDI to DAW, and much more.

With Scaler 2 at your side, you will never have to start from scratch. It comes with 200+ artist chord sets, 400+ unique genre, common and mood-based chord sets, 500+ phrases, performance, sequences, basslines, melodies, and rhythm, 45 electronic, acoustic, and orchestral instruments, and other goodies.

The bundle also comes with the official Scaler 2 course, which will teach you all the ins and outs of how you can take advantage of Scaler 2 to create exceptional melodies.

The bundle is very reasonably priced. If you think you might need a bit of help with establishing the key elements of your beats and tracks, check it out.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Manipulator by Polyverse

Manipulator by Polyverse

Every producer needs a capable pitch shifter, especially for modern electronic music productions. Polyverse’s Manipulator, though, promises to be much more than that. They even call it a “vocal-transforming processor.”

Built with granular algorithms, Manipulator lets you change the pitch and timbre of monophonic tracks in fun and unexpected ways. From adding subtle harmonization to all-out mangling of melodies, Manipulator lets you turn stale sounds into fresh ones.

Manipulator comes with 10 effects, including formant, harmonics, sound smearing, pseudo stereo, and pitch processing, among others.

In total, Manipulator also features four polyphonic voices, modulation capabilities, real-time processing (which makes it perfect for live performance), and even melody-altering features.

If you feel like you’ve got a melody but haven’t quite “nailed it” yet, you should give Manipulator a try.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Mosaic Keys by Heavyocity

Mosaic Keys by Heavyocity

Heavyocity’s Mosaic Keys is a creative composer tool for keeping the inspiration flowing.

This electric keys Kontakt instrument features 180 snapshot presets. It also gives you the ability to combine and layer sources using the three built-in channels.

Heavyocity is a little humble in its description of Mosaic Keys, though, because the interface is home to a relatively comprehensive mixer, options panel, and arpeggiator.

As you might expect, it can produce an array of creative sounds for composing, scoring, cinematic, and much more.

Mosaic Keys requires Kontakt Player 6 or later.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

H3000 Band Delays by Eventide

H3000 Band Delays by Eventide

Eventide makes cool delays and modulation effects. And H3000 Band Delays is well worth considering if you need to spice up your melodies.

Based on the H3000 Harmonizer, the H3000 Band Delays plugin lets you take your sound, separate it by frequency bands (eight voices), apply filters, and process each band with delays. From rhythmic effects and movement to stereo widening and beyond, H3000 inspires many creative uses.

H3000 Band Delays also comes with multiple filter types (low pass, high pass, all pass, band pass, notch filter), Function Generator for creating movement, beat grid, presets from the original H3000, MixLock, and several other worthwhile features.

Add complex harmonics to vocal tracks, morph existing melodies, and much more, with H3000 Band Delays.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Effectrix by Sugar Bytes

Effectrix by Sugar Bytes

If you like the idea of adding texture and dimension to your melodies, you will probably get a kick out of Sugar Bytes’ Effectrix multi-effects processor.

With a 16-step sequencer (with tempo divider), 14 synced effects (with different parameters for every effect), 12-pattern recall via MIDI keyboard, swing, copy/paste, chaos button, loop length, two modulation tracks, and hundreds of presets per effect, you can add rhythmic flavor, glitching, scratching, and much more to your melodies using Effectrix.

And if you happen to be an electronic music producer, Effectrix has plenty of potential for your synths, basses, leads, and anywhere you see to use it. See what it can do in the video below.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

Nordisk Kontrabass by Have Audio

Nordisk Kontrabass by Have Audio

Have Audio’s Nordisk Kontrabass is a dedicated upright bass Kontakt instrument. If you’ve been trying to find a realistic-sounding upright bass VST, look no further because this entry brings both the conventional and the creative to the table.

Designed as a compositional tool, Nordisk Kontrabass has 14,000 samples to draw upon. It’s got a full suite of effects and controllers, including nine reverb types, delay, reverse, warp, legato speed, “Ice,” and an arpeggiator.

It comes with 12 melodic presets / articulations and 10 textural presets / articulations. That may not sound like much, but for upright bass, that gives you plenty of compositional flexibility.

You’ll need the full version of Kontakt for Nordisk Kontrabass, so don’t forget to work that into your budget.

Learn more: Plugin Boutique

What Should I Look For In VST Plugins For Making Melodies?

Synths. Virtual instruments. Sample libraries. Today, you have more ways of creating amazing melodies than ever before. Supplement your toolkit with MIDI chord packs, arpeggiators, and other creator effects, and you will be able to create variations too numerous to mention.

That said, melodies still depend heavily on inspiration, knowledge of music theory, and let’s face it – intuition. You’ve got to feel the music and hear it in your mind. You’ve got to play or sing the melody with conviction. Otherwise, you can’t expect your ideas to come across.

So, for best results, you must know a) whether the melody should be vocalized or played on an instrument, and b) have inspiring, creative ideas to bring to the table. In both cases, the right VST plugins can help – from music theory tools to versatile effects.

But what tools are right for you? If you’re still undecided, then it’s well worth considering the following factors:

  • Sound quality
  • Features
  • Budget

Let’s consider each.

Sound Quality

Whether Kontakt instrument, virtual instrument, or virtual effect, it would be in your best interest to listen to any plugins you’re seriously considering for purchase.

In most cases, video demos and audio samples are easy to find. Don’t rush into any purchase without first sampling the goods. In the end, you’re the one that’s going to be using the plugin, so you’d better make sure you’re happy with it.

With all the tools at your fingertips, there is simply no reason to make uneducated decisions anymore – unless you happen to have money to burn.

Given that VST plugins today generally do not come with bad-quality samples or low-quality synthesized sounds, I don’t have too much more to offer by way of comment here.

But it is fair to say that some plugins do sound better than others. Either way, though, the idea is to find and use what works for you. That’s key.

Features

When it comes to melody VSTs, you’ve got an array of options to choose from – Kontakt instruments, virtual instruments, sequencers, multi-effects, music theory tools, pitch shifters, and more.

As a result, features will vary considerably from one plugin to another. There aren’t any worthwhile A/B comparisons, at least not as applied to the plugins featured here.

It’s more a matter of what features you require, or what features will enhance and inspire your workflow.

So, don’t buy anything without first looking at what a VST plugin comes with. In some cases, you can make up for deficiencies with other plugins you already own, but of course, this can slow down your computer too.

You will generally pay more for plugins with more features, though, so that’s something else to keep in mind.

Budget

There are plenty of tools out there that can help with melody creation and others that can enhance your stale or boring melodies. Of course, there’s a cost attached to all VSTs too.

Before rushing out and filling your virtual shopping cart with impulse buys, consult your budget first. What can you afford to spend right now? Do not exceed that amount, and do not go into debt for VST plugins. It’s not worth the trouble.

Also remember – if the VST plugin you’ve chosen requires the full version of Kontakt, don’t forget to work that into your budget as well.

Final Thoughts

If the above tools can’t help you make better melodies, no one can. No, I’m just kidding. Of course, there are many people, courses, and other VST plugins that could help.

But don’t forget. Your DAW probably has a built-in synthesizer plugin, and making a new melody might be as simple as messing around with that for an hour or two. If you’re frustrated with that process, though, of course, it’s probably time to try something else.

We hope you found what you were looking for.

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