Best Flute VST Plugins – 2020 Review

If you think about it, whenever you hear a theme played on a flute you can imagine a certain picture that will take you to some part of the world. While this trait is not unique to the flute there is no other instrument that covers such a large part of the globe. 

Comparison of the Best Flute VST Plugins

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Total flute instrument arsenal
  • Most articulations captured ever
  • Horn, clarient, oboe and bassoon extra
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  • Four traditional flute instruments
  • Dual convolution reverb
  • Polyphonic playing mode
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  • Affordable complete woodwind orchestral
  • Solo and ensemble sections
  • CPU friendly
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  • Indian and Native American flutes
  • Pre-recorded phrases
  • Extra vocals and instruments deriving from flute sounds
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  • Unique woodwind software
  • Hundreds of articulation, loops and hybrid sounds
  • Modern music sonic textures
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  • Four ethnic wind instruments
  • Up to six different legato types per instrument
  • Arabic & Turkish microtuning tables
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  • Thousands bamboo flute samples
  • Single voices, phrases, and loops
  • Pre-mapped and Kontakt-ready presets
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Are All Flute VST Plugins The Same ?

Generally speaking, all Flute VST plugins are capable of making wonderful flute sounds nowadays. Of course, those more expensive will provide you with more details, but the biggest difference lies in the number or type of flute instruments they are offering. 

There are many flutes with different sonic attributes in the world. It’s not possible to have them all with just one Flute VST software. That’s why some are specially made to offer you an array of ethnic winds, while others tend to excel in providing you a traditional flute used in western classical music.

What Makes a Great Flute VST? 

Here are some aspects you should consider:

Detailed Sampling

If you need to make a flute VST sound like a real counterpart, you should pick libraries that provide you with a huge number of samples. Such plugins probably have taken all the velocities and dynamic ranges you would need for such work and the round-robin sample pick method is always welcomed.

Articulations

Besides proper sampling, articulations are essential for your flute sound. Playing flute requires certain techniques so pay attention to the number of articulations provided. Also, remember that repetitions and scale runs will always sound much more organic when used as a pre-recorded sample instead of writing it as a MIDI.

Sound Variety

The thing about flute playing is that its sound depends a lot on the player. That’s why single sampled flute won’t fit all the projects. On top of that different flutes cover different sound ranges so you might realize that you need a piccolo for a higher pitch or an alto flute for a darker sound. 

User Interface

With all complexity and expressiveness of the flute sound, a good intuitive and comprehensive user interface can sometimes make more difference than other traits.

Review of the Best Flute VST Plugins

Flutes are not so easy to be found as individual software. That’s why we’ll save you some time and provide you with the best offer on the market:

PROS

  • Award-winning massive woodwinds library
  • Upgrade to the advanced version available
  • Contains horn, clarinet, oboe, and bassoon as well
  • Most articulations captured in a single plugin ever
  • Five different flutes sampled at an incredible level of detail

CONS

  • CPU demanding software
  • Pre-generated phrases are missing

Features and Specifications

This library contains 20GB of high-detailed woodwind samples from different versions of flutes, clarinets, horn, oboe, and bassoon. Five different flute instruments are available from low-range bass flute up to piccolo flute.

All instruments were captured with up to fifty different articulations and three-stage dynamics. Repetitions were treated specially so they were recorded in several tempos. On top of that, there are three performance scripts available allowing your phrases to acquire maximum realism. Each script can be used in any situation but they especially excel in repetition, legato, or portamento notation.

Why it Stands Out to Us

There are not many VSTs that were created by Hollywood blockbusters music producers. Combining them with the people who are aware of how virtual instruments are actually made is a certain guarantee for the excellent product.

This software excels especially regarding how smooth dynamic transitions sound and how realistic note repetitions and legato scale runs are.

We picked the Gold version as a perfect starter pack for all users. In case you would need more recording options at higher audio rates, upgrading to the Diamond version is easy to set-up and will work flawlessly with older projects that were using downgrade versions (Silver, for example).

PROS

  • Full-control over any articulation
  • Polyphonic playing mode available
  • Thousands perfectly tuned samples
  • Collection of four traditional flute instruments
  • Powerful dual convolution reverb with full FX panel

CONS

  • Might be heavy on CPU for some users
  • Manual vibrato editing could come with

Features and Specifications

It contains all the flute instruments you would need for traditional composing. There are two versions of concert flute along with alto and piccolo flute available.

Note transitions can be performed seamlessly, thanks to numerous dynamic layers available. But in case you need a faster loading time, there are reduced versions of all instruments as well. Legato can be performed both natural or artificially depending on the note length you need and vibrato editing can be tuned either automatic or into finest details manually with a couple of presets provided for a head start.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Try any short-long note combination and you will understand why this library is our favor. Even if you play it without any effect it will sound trustworthy no matter what flute you picked. But, once you apply any of the available convolution reverb you will understand how these impulse responses can make your tune sound organic. ite.

We especially like the option to use it in polyphonic mode. While it may not be a traditional use of flute instruments, it can create some interesting and original chord stabs for modern music that can make your track stand out from many others.

PROS

  • Light CPU and RAM memory usage
  • Multi-velocity layers for all instruments
  • Affordable woodwind library sampled at 24-bit resolution
  • Built-in effects rack with dedicated amp and filter envelopes
  • 115 instrument presets of both solo and various ensemble versions

CONS

  • 10.15 Catalina not yet supported
  • Effect panel should have turned off switches for every section

Features and Specifications

There are 115 presets available with many articulations captured (double and flutter tonguing, sustained and staccato notes, just to name a few) for every instrument. Key switches are placed at a very visible size while the MIDI modulation wheel can be used for controlling the swell behavior. Thanks to MIDI learn feature other controls can be also assigned to the MIDI controller.

Effect panel provides you with a couple of dedicated units for reverb, chorus, delay, and EQ while Filter and Amp have their own envelope so you can fully adjust your sound.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This plugin doesn’t require too much of your CPU power so you can use it even if your computer upgrade isn’t coming so soon. It may not have all the gimmicks like those premium libraries have but it will have more than enough to sound great. SONiVOX captured enough articulation so unless you’re about to record a blockbuster soundtrack you will do just fine.

We approve of the idea to provide you with both solo and ensemble section versions. This way you can use it not just for composing scoring pieces, but any kind of modern music production as well.

PROS

  • 15 Instrument Presets
  • Complete effects panel
  • Rare collection of Indian and Native American flutes
  • Several articulations and live performances sampled
  • Extra vocals and instruments designed from the flute source

CONS

  • Kontakt Free Player is not supported
  • Native American flutes contain live phrases only

Features and Specifications

This Flute VST comes with 15 presets of ethnic flutes that belong to the cultural legacy of India and Native Americans. It contains thousands of samples and legato articulations even contain an infinite sustain feature. Staccato articulations use a round-robin method where they pick between 8 different samples. Phrase sequencer is also included and it allows you pitch transposition and time-stretching.

Effects panel is very powerful and includes EQ, resonant filter, delay, compression, flanger, chorus, phaser, deamp simulation, and convolution reverb with dozens of different impulse responses to pick.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This is a very rare plugin. It contains some of the instruments that are not so easy to be found sampled at this quality. All instruments were captured in perfect studio conditions with a dual set of two microphones and all four can be individually adjusted.

Indian Venu has a unique timbre that can be used in many soundtracks while Native American Plains flute collections have very useful phrase sequencers that can create instant inspiration for you. Add any of the many convolution reverb bundled and you won’t tell a difference from a real flute.

Editor’s Pick:
VENTO Modern Woodwinds

PROS

  • Capable effects panel
  • Extremely innovative “Evolved” presets
  • Unique hybrid woodwind software on the market
  • MACRO knob allows intuitive multi-parameter control
  • Hundreds of organic articulations, hybrid layers, and loops

CONS

  • Might be expensive
  • Heavily biased towards modern music

Features and Specifications

Presets are organized into two folders - Traditional and Evolved. Traditional consists of five instrument selection - clarinet, flute, high, low, and contra bass ensemble all equipped with specific key switches and MACRO knob that changes its functionality based on the preset you’re currently using. You are also provided with Woodwing Loop Designer presets.

The effect panel is very editable. You can choose stack resonant filter, distortion, chorus, delay, and reverb all together and significantly alter overall sound impression and behavior, especially thanks to comb filters combined with random patterns.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This innovative software is supposed to give us an answer to how classical composers would treat wind instruments today. That’s why it should be looked at as more than just a wind instrument VST.

It also won’t fit perfectly into traditional scoring pieces. But it will make a difference to anything that requires a modern approach. Combined with an advanced woodwind creator page you can even create sounds that might remind you of granular synthesis.

It will especially excel in creating unique artificial sound textures and pads combining sound design with traditional wind ensembles. Excellent add-on for any soundtrack that requires an experimental approach.

Best Ethnic Flute VST:
Best Service Desert Winds

PROS

  • Additional sound textures included
  • 4 ethnic wind instruments from the East
  • Up to 6 different legato types per instrument
  • More than 2.000 samples included with real-time controls
  • Contains most important Arabic/Turkish microtuning tables

CONS

  • Limited effect panel
  • Built-in phrases would be welcomed

Features and Specifications

This plugin contains 2.5 gigabytes of samples with more than 2.000 audio files included. It provides you with four Eastern ethnic wind instruments - Duduk, Zourna, and Persian and Turkish versions of Ney flute. Every instrument has up to six different legato playing styles and can use one of sixteen microtuning tables available for achieving authentic oriental tune. 

Additional soundscapes are also provided and use up to six individual layers of these instruments. These layers can be balanced to your personal taste and can be edited further by altering the envelope curve.

Why it Stands Out to Us

Mid-East flutes are some of the most authentic instruments in the world. They are very different from traditional wind instruments so they are always welcomed if you want to expand your arsenal at a very affordable price. Combining the sound of these four instruments you will also cover a wide sonic range as they have a very different timbre and key range.

Note transition of this library sounds very fluid and additional soundscapes provided can make a real difference if you need to create a certain oriental vibe for a movie or a video game.

PROS

  • Instant drag and drop feature
  • Comprehensive and fast setup
  • 3000+ studio samples and bamboo flute
  • Contains single voices, phrases, and loops
  • Pre-mapped and Kontakt-ready instruments

CONS

  • No round-robin sample picking
  • Requires sample software to work

Features and Specifications

It comes with more than three thousand samples recorded at 24-bit resolution. It contains single legato notes and pre-made phrases and loops recorded in a different tempo and key range. All presets are pre-made for use with the provided Kontakt instrument patches but in case you would like to, you can use all the samples with other sample players as all patches are available in.WAV format and phrases and loops can be dragged directly into any DAW software you’re using.

Why it Stands Out to Us

While this software doesn’t provide you with advanced sampling, it’s a vast collection of bamboo flute samples coming at an incredibly low price. It may easily satisfy all your needs thanks to many phrases and loops provided and might be even easier to use than those huge libraries with many articulations captured independently. We like how simple it is to navigate it and set it up because when you draw the line, all that matters is the result and not the way you get to it.

So if you need a bamboo flute sound - this sample bank has it.

When Would a Flute VST Come in Handy?

Let us give you a couple of hints. While some might be obvious, though:

Themes

Due to the high-pitch sound character, they are ideal to take a lead theme on their own. It’s no wonder that many songs in demo stages used a flute sound to write down the melody of the lead vocal.

Passion

Flutes are very expressive instruments. They can sound both epic or lyric, fast-paced happy, or slow almost pad-like touching, so you can use them whenever you need to achieve a certain passion.

Best Service Chris Hein Winds Vol. 1 - Flutes

Ethnic Sounds

If you need to create that extra pinch of fantasy vibe or picture any part of the world, remember that almost every part of the world has some unique flute that will trigger an instant link for the audience to that area.

In case you somehow don’t link Ireland with flute sound, then think about Japan and Shakuhachi (someone said Sledgehammer?) or those Mid-Eastern notes played on Bansuri.

Special Effects

Flutes sound very organic. But, because of physical modeling available in modern software, you can create some virtual flutes that can be 10 feet long or add extreme special effects. This way you can make a sound that will create a vibe of something “not from this world”. Very useful for any kind of Sci-Fi moment.

Conclusion 

You may not use Flute VST every day, but there will come the time when they will be indispensable. The start of the learning curve will require some effort from you if you want to make it sound realistic, so that’s why we would recommend you to prepare and buy one now.