Analog Obsession is one of the increasingly popular VST plugin makers.
The great thing is that all the plugins are free, as the company works with a donation-based system in Patreon. From FET compressors to classic British preamps, many plugins are offered for analog fans to explore.
So, today, we will delve deep into the world of Analog Obsession plugins. I will also give some tips on using them so you can start one step ahead.
Best Free Analog Obsession Plugins 2024
What I really enjoy about Comper is that it’s a serial and multi-mode compressor circuit. This gives you the analog flavor and high versatility to create a mutant blend of different compressor types for a wide range of analog flavors.
If you like to play with compressor types like me, Comper is just for you with its blend features. For the top and bottom compressors, you can simultaneously use different compressor modes, like VCA, FET, and Opto. The combinations are plenty, with two compressors in series and three circuits for each. This way, I think Comper reinvents what a compressor can achieve.
For example, I enjoy the FET/Opto combination compressor for vocals as it gives me a similar sound to the 1176 to LA-2A compressor chain. I recommend trying different combinations for guitars to smooth out the sharp parts and add a nice analog flavor to the tone.
Also, there is a good range of ratio selection from 1:1 to 1:20. The 1:1 ratio gives a great harmonic coloration for your sound, as you would get from hardware transformers. It also has 4x oversampling, but be careful; it can be hard on your CPU.
The plugin is available in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows, while it is in AU, VST3, and AAX formats for Mac users.
Blackvibe is a great transparent Fender-style custom amp emulation with a nice tremolo effect.
I especially like Blackvibe’s simple design and ease of use. Plus, the tremolo effect touch is great for tremolo guitar parts like we hear in Gimme Shelter by The Rolling Stones. It is clean and vibey like you would expect from a vintage tremolo effect.
The amp also works solidly with bass and keyboards. You can easily finetune your sound with the 3-band EQ and Speed and Depth controls for the tremolo. It is also good to have the Depth control to go to experimental realms when you want.
The amp also comes without built-in cabins, giving you more customization options with your own IR cabin choice.
I love using the Blackvibe with other pedal plugins as it has quite a transparent sound. It is a clean amp with less character and acts great as the base of your sound, leaving the scene to other effect plugins in your chain to shine.
For Windows users, the plugin is available in VST3 and AAX formats. For Mac, it comes in AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
As one of my favorite mastering EQ plugins, OAQ finds the sweet spot in your mixes with its 6-band customizable frequencies and versatile dual-mono, stereo, mid-side design.
OAQ is a great EQ for versatility lovers like me who want to take control of different frequencies. There are six bands of bell-shaped equalization, each with two or three switchable frequency points. You can adjust the left and right channels separately, link them with the L button, or use the MS button for Mid-Side processing.
So, what I enjoy the most about this EQ is the balance of simplicity and versatility it offers. It also features Low Cut and High Pass Filters and 0 to 24 dB Drive with x4 oversampling for extra saturation.
I think OAQ is a pretty all-rounder EQ that you can use with any project, either EQing a drum or vocals or using it as a bus processor.
This plugin is available for Windows users in VST3 and AAX formats; for Mac users, it comes in AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
As the name suggests, this is an SSL-inspired bus compressor with handy features to ease your workflow.
Before anything else, I like the simple, user-friendly design of BusterSE, which resembles hardware compressors. It has the stereo compressor, sidechain, and mode sections for easy adjustment. Analog Obsessions is famous for creating great GUI designs, and they do not disappoint with this one, either.
Coming to the critical part, this compressor comes with a sidechain input with a high-pass filter and transient controls. So, for instance, I use it on bass tracks, and it ducks the bass whenever a kick drum hits, which shortens my production process.
The Turbo mode is convenient as it makes the compressor focus on all the frequency ranges instead of just the mid-realms in the Main mode. This is great when you want your compressor to act like a hardware compressor.
Finally, there is the XFormer mode, which I use to color the signal, playing with the impedance, tonal character, and overall balance. But, if you want a more transparent sound, the Main mode delivers it successfully.
As this is a bus compressor, remember that less is more. Try to be subtle and avoid big moves. Slow attack times, fast release times, and lower ratios are great. Stereo compressors like this add a great punch to your mix if you find the sweet spot.
BusterSE comes in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows and AU, VST3, and AAX formats for Mac users.
Maxbax is a great, entirely passive, gentle, yet wide EQ for subtle tonal shaping fans.
Maxbax is a straightforward EQ with an extra mid knob to finetune the mid-ranges better. It has left-right and mid-side modes for versatility.
The left side of the EQ acts as the left or mid, while the right side acts as the right or side, depending on the mode you are using. You can use both sides separately. For example, it would come in handy for equalizing backing vocals differently on the left and right sides.
As I said before, this EQ is for subtle shaping. So, using it on the mix bus or as a part of the mastering chain is better.
In any case, I like to use Maxbax to find the spectral balance between mids, highs, and lows with the wide Q bands. You shouldn’t treat it as a surgical tool to fix problems but as a subtle enhancer for your mix.
Analog Obsessions offers this plugin for Windows users in VST3 and AAX formats, while Mac users have the AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
You can improve your vocal recordings with this simple and smooth yet effective de-esser.
Loades is a great de-esser plugin with interesting features like band or shelf-type de-esser modes. So, you can use it for broader adjustment with the Band mode or for smoother and more transparent processing with the Soft mode.
This one is good for mix situations where you must adjust vocal sibilance or warm up an entire mix. I also use it to decrease the harsh peaks of drums, multitrack, or overall mastering. Plus, it has a 60dB range threshold to process.
I think many great de-essers are doing great jobs like Loades, but this one is a free and pretty intuitive plugin. For me, that’s the main reason it stands out from the rest.
The plugin is available in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows. For Mac, it comes in AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
One-of-a-kind dynamic enhancer plugin, ReLife, is there to sweeten your final mixes.
This one is one of my favorite Analog Obsession plugins with ease of use. It works like a saturator, giving a boost to lows and highs and a dip to the low mids. I like that it easily provides clarity to the final mix.
It comes with two unique knobs, Life and Shape, to finetune your mix. Life is for giving clarity and life to your mix, while Shape works as a predefined EQ that plays with specific frequency bands.
You can use ReLife on any occasion, playing with the settings to enhance your tracks.
ReLife is available for Windows users in VST3 and AAX formats; for Mac users, it is in AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
For vintage plate reverb lovers, Room041 is one to add to your repertoire.
This is one of the first Analog Obsession plugins ever released. It brings you the Room and Plate reverb and has a simple and lovely-looking GUI with some nice touches for your reverb effect.
It is a nice plugin if you like the natural reverb effect with a realistic sense of space. It also has a Drive knob to adjust the input drive, which acts like a tube-based reverb line input. So, it works great as a clean or dirty reverb.
Room041 is pretty successful when used with vocals and snare drums. I really enjoy the reverb diffusion it provides to the tone. Its ease of use and intuitive use make it especially great for beginners.
This plugin comes in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows, as well as AU, VST3, and AAX formats for Mac users.
If you like the legendary SSL console equalizer, SSQ is a must-have plugin.
I always liked the early 80s E Type consoles for their big sound and unique character. That is precisely what SSQ brings to your mixes.
This EQ gives you quite a bit of freedom, which I really appreciate. It allows you to boost and-or change the bell curve of low, low-mid, high-mid, and high frequencies and also comes with a high and a low pass filter.
I think this is a great EQ to use on vocal recordings, as it sounds pretty close to the analog SSL consoles. It sounds slightly rounder, but that is rarely a problem. Also, you can use it to give a bit more body to the drum recordings to make them stand out in the mix.
SSQ is built in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows, while AU, VST3, and AAX formats are for Mac users.
Guitar tracks to come alive with the 69-style HLQSE equalizer.
It comes with a 3-band EQ, which allows you to boost or cut bands simultaneously, giving you more versatility in shaping your sound. This is the main difference between the original console and the plugin, and I think it is a great addition.
The original Helios Type 69 console was a legend for overdriven guitar sounds. So don’t be surprised when HLQSE creates wonders with guitar tracks.
HLQSE comes in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows. For Mac users, there are AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
You will love this plugin if the analog sound is what you are looking for in an EQ.
One of my favorite Analog Obsession plugins is this 4-band EQ. It perfectly captures the 70s-80s Neumann console colors with tight, resonant lows and articulate presence.
The user interface is nice, too, with colorful low, low-mid, high-mid, and high-frequency sections. There are also bypass switches and Dual Mono, Stereo, and Mid/Side switches for different operation options.
If you want a surgical EQ, this is not the right choice. But if you want that vintage analog Neuman tone to add character to your mix, it is a great choice.
The plugin has the VST3 and AAX formats for Windows users, while for Mac users, it comes in the AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
You can get rid of the robotized feel and catch the nuances of live music with this random transient processor.
I don’t think this plugin has any equivalent in terms of what it does. It helps you eliminate the static and robotic feel of drum samples, synths, and more.
It comes with six knobs, and each knob has a range of random values. You can adjust the intensity of randomness for each of them. For example, if you adjust the intensity to 10%, you will get a narrow range of randomness in that parameter.
You can use the gain and transient variations for percussive instruments and the pitch variations for synths to make them sound more human. High-pass and low-pass filters are not that useful, in my opinion.
To be honest, some things need to be upgraded with this plugin. But the idea is quite unique, and I’m sure AO will upgrade it soon, according to the feedback.
Realizer is available for Windows users in VST3 and AAX formats, and for Mac users, it comes in AU, VST3, and AAX formats.
A great Fet-style compressor with fast attack and release times for better-sounding drum partitions.
The bonus plugin, FetCB, is a British-style 70s-era FET limiter-compressor. I love that it stays highly loyal to the original analog compressors with fast attack and release times, a wide range of dynamic control, and an independent threshold.
I like to use FetCB to boost and make my drum parts more punchy. But they also work great with guitar, bass, and vocal parts. I use it on already compressed parts to tighten them up a bit more and add a bit of analog color to the mix.
FetCB comes in VST3 and AAX formats for Windows users and AU, VST3, and AAX formats for Mac.
So, there you have the 13 of the best plugins from Analog Obsessions. In my opinion, all of the plugins work great for different occasions. But, some have wider areas of use than others. That said, hats off to Analog Obsessions for creating such great freeware plugins. Also, I love that all these plugins are pretty light on CPU.
I recommend Comper, a highly versatile compressor that mixes different compressor types for different analog sounds. Also, Blackvibe is my go-to amp for a clean, transparent sound with a great tremolo effect. My recommended EQ is the OAQ with 6-band customizable frequencies and high versatility.
Hope you found this article helpful and that you start to enjoy these plugins in your workflow.
I am a multi-instrumentalist musician from Istanbul, Turkey. I have played guitar, handpan, and percussion for over ten years. Having started my music journey as a guitarist when I was a teenager, playing in several bands, I met with the handpan in 2016. I fell in love with the instrument the first time I heard it and started focusing more on handpan and percussion skills after that. Since then, I have been playing in streets, festivals, bars, and stages in different countries. I also compose, record, and produce my own music, combining different instruments and exploring various genres.