37 Best Free Vst Compressor Plugins For Mixing & Mastering in the World


In this post, we will talk further about 37 best VST compressor plugins great for mixing and mastering that are completely free.

Compressor plugins are a fantastic way to customize the sound and texture of the music you make. The vast array of options for compressor plugins can make choosing one for a certain situation quite confusing, which is why we have put together this guide to make this task a little easier.

Why Should I use the Compressor Plugins?

Compression is used to decrease the dynamic range of the audio signal of your choice. Compressors can be thought of as an automatic volume knob that lowers an audio signal’s level when it becomes too loud. 

It is essential that you understand what the parameters of a compressor does before trying to use a compressor plugin. An easy way to do this is to think of a compressor as a tool to solve problems. 

You should not use one if you do not have a problem that you can identify, and that can be fixed using a compressor. One of the most common problems that compressors can easily fix is when transients are sticking out, such as when a snare track has too much ‘bite.’

Also, check this post on what are the best tools to develop VST plugins.

Here is the list of 37 Best Free Compressor Plugins For Mixing & Mastering

Check The Info and Download Compressor Plugins For Free:

1. Semantic Audio SAFE Compressor | info & download | linux, mac, win
2. Xfer Records OTT | info & download | mac, win
3. Audio Damage Rough Rider 2 | info & download | mac, win, ios
4. whiteLABEL bolsterisers | info & download | win 
5. Digitalfishphones BlockFish | info & download | mac, win
6. DC1A | info & download | mac, win
7. Melda MCompressor | info & download | mac, win
8. Molot Compressor | info & downloadmac, win
9. eaReckon FR COMP 87 | info & download | mac, win
10. FXPansion DCAM | info & download | mac, win
11. Klanghelm MJUC jr. | info & download | mac, win
12. TDR Feedback Compressor | info & download | win
13. Sweetboy T-Sledge Multiband Compressor | info & download | win
14. GVST Gmulti | info & download | win
15. KINGTAO KT-C | info & download | mac, win
16. Variety of Sound ThrillseekerLA | info & download | win
17. Variety of Sound density MKIII | info & download | win
18. dlm D2 Compressor | info & download | win
19. Minimal System Instruments Stereo Buss Compresor | info & download | win
20. TDR Kotelnikov | info & download | mac, win 
21. ADHD Leveling Tool | info & download | win, mac
22. Smack Labs SL63x | info & download | win
23. DeadDuck DD Compressor | info & download | win
24. Minimal System Instruments Ultra Comp | info & downloadwin
25. Ourafilmes Arsenal Compressor LE | info & download | win
26. Cana San Martin x10 Multiband Mastering Compressor | info & download | win
27. Matthieu Brucher ATKColoredCompressor | info & download | mac, win
28. Matthieu Brucher ATKCompressor | info & download | mac, win
29. Matthieu Brucher ATKStereoCompressor | info & download | mac, win
30. Bakuage BasicComp | info & download | win
31. NastyVCS | info & download | win
32. smacklabs SL543 | info & download | win
33. Audiocation AC1 | info & download | mac, win
34. RDGAudio SideChainer | info & download | win
35. Martin Eastwood Compressive CM | info & download | mac, win
36. Synthescience Compressor Box | info & download | win
37. Analog Obsession FETISH | info & download | mac, win

37 Best Free Compressor Plugins

 Without further ado, check out our in-depth reviews of the top options when it comes to free compressor plugins.

1. Semantic Audio SAFE Compressor

SemanticAudio SAFE Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | linux, mac, win

The SAFE Project was created as a response to the shortage of transferable semantic terms in the production of music. It also deals with the demand for a more intuitive way of controlling low-level parameters. One of the biggest results that this project has produced is a variety of plugins that let you load and save semantic terms from inside the audio production workflow.

This allows you to control the effects of your audio plugins in a super simplified way. All you need to do is type a term into the textbox, such as ‘bright,’ ‘warm,’ and if it is available on the server, the parameters of your audio will be altered to match it.

2. Xfer Records OTT

 

Xfer OTT Free Multiband Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

OTT by Xfer Records is actually a recreation of a well-known aggressive upwards and downwards compressor setting that is utilized by various electro and dubstep producers. It provides depth control to allow you to scale the amount of compression on your audio tracks. 

This plugin also lets you control time to scale the attack and release time of any of your bands, as well as provides control over the output and input gains. The visual input display makes using this plugin very simple.

3. Audio Damage Rough Rider 2

 

RoughRider 2 Audio Damage Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win, ios

The Rough Rider 2 compressor plugin is one of the most widely used dynamics processors in use today and is used by famous producers globally.

This plugin has been expanded to include an option to disable the built-in warming filter, an external sidechain input, and metering that provides superior accuracy.

4. whiteLABEL bolsterisers

 

whiteLABEL boolsterisers Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

The bolsteriser plugins come from a time before today’s compression existed. They were created by an English experimentalist who has remained obscure for as long as he has been producing music and developed his original concept for the bolsteriser while having a nap on his lawn with his cat. 

Almost 90 years later, the bolsterisers have been recreated in digital form. In the early days of the bolsteriser, there was no functional language of audio compression, so some of the terms used with the bolsterisers are a bit dated.

5. Digitalfishphones BlockFish

 

Blockfish Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

BlockFish is one of the more versatile compressor plugins out there and provides hundreds of ways to shape your audio. It is unique in that it simulates a physical compressor module, and allows you to adjust the ‘circuit board’ by removing the front plate, which lets you create your own unique sonic texture.

6. DC1A

 

Klanghelm Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

DC1A is a simplified version of the DC8C plugin, but offers some additional features, like stereo unlink and negative ratio.

This compressor runs with little more than an input and output knob and can provide near-invisible leveling, to heavy pumping to make your drum tracks punch.

7. Melda MCompressor

 

MCompressor Melda Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

This compression provides a more refined compression and features a compression shape that is adjustable, which gives you the ability to create a range of sampling options and dynamic sound effects to produce ultra-clear sounds. 

The GUI on the MCompressor plugin is also one of the simplest and easiest to use. It is flexible enough to suit just about any need.

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8. Molot Compressor

 

Molot Free Compressor Plugin

info & downloadmac, win

The Molot compressor adds a lot of texture to your sound and is not recommended for use by beginners, as the interface is more on the complex side. It also takes more care to tune, but this also means that you can create exactly the sound you want.

This compressor provides a wide variety of adjustments and customization options to get your audio sounding just how you want it to.

9. eaReckon FR COMP 87

 

FR COMP 87 Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

This series of compressors are based on the ANALOG87 series and features six high-quality analog AU and VST effects. In addition to these plugins providing excellent sound quality, they are easy to use. 

10. FXPansion DCAM

 

D CAM FreeComp Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

The DCAM FreeComp plugin provides premium compression that is modeled after circuits and is compatible with AU, VST, or RTAS hosts. It boasts a very realistic range of classic bus compressor models and is designed to blend entire mixes together while still bringing out the definition of your tracks. 

This plugin is also perfect for those who enjoy sculpting their mixes and adjusting the peaks in specific tracks. It can also create pumping effects using its more extreme configurations.

11. Klanghelm MJUC jr.

 

Klanghelm Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

This plugin is not only capable of heavy pumping effects, but smooth leveling as well, making it one of the more versatile compressors on this list. It features an interstage transformer and two gain stages that provide lively and deep sound quality. 

The three-position switch allows you to control the attack and release times of this unit, as well as the various rate of transformers and the other circuitry timing.

12. TDR Feedback Compressor 

 

TDR Feedback Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

This dynamic range compressor was carefully designed to compress sum and bus, and essentially ‘listens’ to the output it creates. This approach provides a very musical characteristic of compression, and can easily handle even the most complex audio signals.

These unique traits work in combination with a simplified audio-path and advanced signal processing methods., and the compressor is meticulously tuned to provide the most musical and intuitive operation possible.

13. Sweetboy T-Sledge

 

T-Sledge Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

The T-Sledge plugin is a multi-band compressor designed for mastering tracks and features a level maximizer, peak limiter, and four limiters, compressors and expanders. It also features two types of dividing filters, meaning that it works similarly to a dynamics EQ.

This compressor offers a huge variety of features, from threshold and ratio control, to attack and release controls, and gain, input, and knob controls, to allow you to fully customize your tracks.

14. GVST Gmulti

 

GVST GMulti Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

This free VST compressor allows you to separate audio tracks into three frequency bands that are configurable, allowing you to process them individually. You are also able to adjust stereo width, compression, and level for each of these bands. 

Additionally, you can mute bands to change the settings for each isolation, and use the mix control to a/B with the base material.

15. KINGTAO KT-C

 

KINGTAO KT-C

info & download | win, mac

This plugin provides parallel compression, constant 2:1 to 10:1 ratios, VU meters for reduction and input, continuous attack, and release from 0.5 to 300ms and 0.05 to 10s, respectively, and two curves of compression.

16. Variety of Sound ThrillseekerLA

 

Variety of Sound ThrillseekerLA Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

The ThrillseekerLA plugin provides a deep gain riding and high-end musical character with almost no intermodulation distortion. It is very much dependent on programming and envelope timing, which provides a wide range of attack and release times.

17. Variety of Sound density MKIII

 

Density MKIII Free eCompressor Plugin

info & download | win

If you are looking for a compressor plugin that is not limited to audio mastering applications, this plugin is for you. The transient response it produces over the whole audio spectrum adds depth and dimension to your tracks, and essentially renders your audio as a 3D image.

18. dlm D2 Compressor

 

dlm D2 Free Plugin Compressor

info & download | win

This is a versatile, do-it-all compressor that is super accessible to beginners and professionals alike, thanks to its simple interface. It can be subtle or heavy, dirty or clean, gentle, or quick – this is an all-round plugin.

19. Minimal System Instruments Stereo Buss Compresor

 

MSI Stereo Buss Compressor For Free

info & download | win

This is the perfect plugin for producers that enjoy adding some finishing touches to their tracks. The Stereo Buss Compressor was based on the iconic bus compressors from classic analog machines that were the secret behind a host of classical releases.

Essentially, the job of this compressor is to blend the elements of your track together to make them sound more characteristic while still maintaining clarity.

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20. TDR Kotelnikov

 

TDR Kotelnikov Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win 

This is a dynamics plugin that consists of deep musical flexibility and a high fidelity range of dynamics. The best way to describe its character would be ‘stealthy,’ as it is able to manipulate the range of dynamics drastically, but still maintain the original tone of your track.

21. ADHD Leveling Tool

 

ADHD Audio Tool Free Leveling and Compressor Plugin

info & download | win, mac

The ADHD leveling tool is a tube leveling amplifier that draws inspiration from the legends of compressor plugins and was carefully designed to suit almost all compression needs.

It is ideal for modifying vocal tracks, and gives taming and character to the peaks on any track in your audio.

22. Smack Labs SL63x

 

SmackLabs 63x Free Compressor/Limiter Plugin

info & download | win

This compressor was inspired by perhaps the most straightforward compressor ever created and offers quick compression via its fader slide.

An input knob was added to adjust gain staging since the plugin is dependent on programming. This subsequently influences the way the compressor functions.

23. DeadDuck DD Compressor

 

DeadDuck DD Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

This is one of the more powerful compressors on this list, and provides all of the essential compression effects and mixing tools such as EQ, modulation effects, delays, and so much more.

24. Minimal System Instruments Ultra Comp

 

MSI Ultracomp Free Compressor Plugin

info & downloadwin

This vintage compressor from Minimal System is ideal for novice musicians and professional producers alike, and features a super simple control panel, making it easy to use while still providing excellent sound quality.

This plugin can be used on your master buss or individual tracks.

25. Ourafilmes Arsenal Compressor LE

 

Ourafilmes Arsenal Compressor LE Free Plugin

info & download | win

This is a complete vintage compressor plugin with internal sidechain filters and mid/side processing. It can be used to process any sound that you need to process dynamically or use the side chain capability to process specific tracks or frequencies.

26. Cana San Martin x10 Multiband Mastering Compressor

 

Cana San Martin Free Multiband Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

This compressor plugin may appear extremely complicated and daunting but is rather easy to use if you have a basic understanding of compressors and their functionalities.

The CANA x10 compressor is a multiband plugin that lets you customize your audio tracks in just about every way possible.

27. Matthieu Brucher ATKColoredCompressor

 

ATK Colored Compressor

info & download | mac, win

The ATKCOloredCompressor is a single-color plugin that features a peak power and RMS detection control, as well as a color selection that adjusts the gain around the threshold.

28. Matthieu Brucher ATKCompressor

 

ATKCompressor Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

THe ATKCompressor stereo plugin is capable of working one left/right or middle/side channels and can be configured to mix the compressed signal with the input signal.

29. Matthieu Brucher ATKStereoCompressor

 

ATKStereoCompressor Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

Similar to the previous plugin, this stereo compressor can work with left/right or middle/side channels and can mix the compressed signal with the input signal.

30. Bakuage BasicComp

 

Bakuage Basic Comp Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

This is a premium CST3 plugin with a focus on natural dynamic range compression, and it is perfect for vocal tracks, drum tracks, or general mastering.

31. NastyVCS (EQ/Comp)

 

info & download | win

This plugin can be described as a virtual strip of console that brings a ‘nastier’ tone to your mixes. It is based on a totally unique compression unit and provides everything you could need to configure the tone and dynamics of your channels.

It features a crunchy pre-amp saturated dedicated input stage, as well as a limiter in the output stage.

32. smacklabs SL543

smacklabs SL543 Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

The SL543 draws inspiration from a VCA dup compressor and provides both subtle and aggressive compression.

In its Feed Forward mode, it can be used to control dynamics more aggressively. The Feedback Mode gives more transparency for 2-bus dynamics.

33. Audiocation AC1

Audiocation AC1 Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

This is a compressor that was developed by experts in order to produce fast response times and simulation of input with analog transformer. The super-fast control times lets you distort your sounds subtly or aggressively. 

34. de la mancha GTA

de la mancha GTA Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | win

This is a characteristic vintage-styled compressor that is designed to provide pure speed, brute power, and to make loud noises. It has been stripped so it is as easy to use as possible. And the unique vintage top coloring makes it stand out among other plugins.

35. Martin Eastwood Compressive CM

Martin Eastwood Audio Compressive CM Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

Compressive CM is a compressor modeled after an external side chain analog and features a brickwall limiter. The side features three-band EQ and controls for mid and side that offer complete audio dynamic control.

36. Synthescience Compressor Box

Synthescience Compressor Box Free Plugin

info & download | win

The Compressor Box is a fundamental studio tool and provides effective features rather than ones that are more obscure.

Each switch and knob is presented in a clear way to make using this plugin as straightforward as possible and does not require you to think too much.

37. Analog Obsession FETISH

Analog Obsession FETISH Free Compressor Plugin

info & download | mac, win

This plugin features a sidechain filter, a ‘SLAM’ function that is popular in the DIY producing world, and control over high frequencies, mid frequencies, and low frequencies. This compressor is all about creating a classic sound without the limitations of classic tools.

What Are The Best Compressor Plugins For EDM Music?

Rough Rider

While RoughRider2 is more of a vintage-style compressor, it can be used to add bite to your forums, guitars, and backing vocals to make them sound dirty and aggressive. An aggressive drum and rhythm is characteristic of EDM music, which is why this compressor plugin works so well. 

Note that adding pump and intensity to rhythmic tracks is what this plugin does best, and is by no means an all-purpose compressor. Again, it is also not a typical plugin, and adds more of a unique warmth to your tracks than anything else, but it is worth trying and experimenting with to see what cool effects you can create with it. 

RoughRider 2 Audio Damage

OTT Compressor

OTT stands for ‘Over The Top’ Compression, which makes it just perfect for producing EDM. Essentially, it compresses three of the frequency bands to the degree that is beyond ridiculous, leaving you with little to no dynamic range at all. It basically rebalances the sound and spreads it evenly across the spectrum of frequencies.

This plugin is perfect for modifying growling sounds that are too heavy in the bass, and can align the volume of the bass to the mids and highs to make everything ‘flatter.’ The effect it has on the overall track is a brighter, more punchy sound, which is great for EDM.

Plus, it can produce lots of reverb, especially at the end of a shorter sound, meaning that the sound will hit clearly. but the reverb begins the moment the sound stops.  

Xfer OTT Multiband Compressor

SAFE Compressor

This is one of the most straightforward compressor plugins out there. It works by allowing you to type a term or keyword into the textbox, such as ‘bright, warm, punch,’ and the plugin will make the necessary changes to your audio tracks if the server has the right parameters to match your term. 

This means that you can type in some of the words often used to describe EDM, like ‘punch, ‘intense, ’ and the compressor will make all the changes you need. If you find that the preset parameters are not to your liking, you are also able to adjust them manually, to get the exact sound you want. 

SemanticAudio SAFE Compressor

Conclusion

While you could theoretically make do with any compressor plugin, different plugins do different things, and the one that is right for you will likely be determined by your personal preference, and what you are looking for in a compressor. Hopefully, we’ve made finding what works best for you a little less challenging. 

MusicGearo

MusicGearo is a blog site created by passionate music producers for the music lover who wants to build a home studio or purchase various music performance or production gear.It also addresses those who already own home studios but need to learn how to get the most out of the gear they already own.

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