Let’s dive into the best options for human whistle VST plugins available in 2023.
Humans are very musical beings, and we’ve been like that for quite a long time. We always like to express our thoughts and feelings through music, independent of how it’s formed. You can beat up a drum, blow a flute, or even sing a melody with your voice.
Another fantastic way to make music is by whistling. It’s a creative and musical way to manipulate the airflow from your lungs, just like singing. Unfortunately, however, many people don’t know how to whistle – it’s understandable, as this technique depends primarily on one’s lips and overall mouth shape.
To remedy that, we have a collection of five great human whistle virtual instrument plugins that are still relevant in 2023. These are friendly software that allows for optimal customization and provides great sonority in the final result, thus making it irrelevant if you know how to make complex melodies with your lips.
Let’s look into the options.
Top 5 Human Whistle VST Plugins / Kontakt Libraries 2023
1. Lennar Digital Sylenth1 (Make Your Whistle)
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This powerful synthesizer can recreate whistles very quickly.
It’s common to see multiple synth virtual instrument plugins nowadays, with the most diverse sonorities and uses. So we can opt for a perfect replica of an authentic vintage unit and simultaneously use a new and strange variation that sounds wonderful. The goal behind Lennar Digital Sylenth1 is to have a bit of both, providing the best tools any producer could want.
Lennar Digital Sylenth1 has four main oscillators that are alias-free and capable of generating analog waveforms. Each oscillator can produce up to eight unison voices in stereo, thus adding up to 32 voices per note. Adding the 16 notes of polyphony means you can reach up to 512 voices played simultaneously, which is enormous.
There are two filter sections in Lennar Digital Sylenth1, each containing four filter stages with non-linear saturation. This recreates the warmth and analog bliss that the vintage units are often hailed for. In addition, the “Resonance” control can be significantly increased in volume and combined with the “Drive” control for an authentic, energetic performance.
- Light performance
Although Lennar Digital Sylenth1 is complex software with multiple features, it’s surprising that it doesn’t consume much CPU data. The highly optimized algorithm and the SSE instructions reduce CPU power consumption to a minimum, automatically turning off segments of the synthesizer that are not being used to save extra power for what you’re doing now.
You can count on two envelope sections capable of dealing with the basic ASDR controls, aside from two LFOs which can be used to modulate any set of parameters you choose. With the different amplitude envelopes, velocity markers, and the modulation wheel, you can easily tweak the signal to become more like a whistle.
The master FX section houses the effects that can be used to make your sound go wild. You can expect to find a step-sequencer arpeggiator, phaser, distortion, EQ, chorus, delay, flanger, compressor, and the classic reverb to add the proper ambiance to everything.
This plugin is available for macOS 10.9 or higher (64-bit only) and Windows 7 or higher (64-bit only). It runs in VSTi, AAX, and AU plugin formats.
If you’re looking for a way to make complex whistle sounds (and more) in an in-depth manner, then Lennar Digital Sylenth1 can be a good option. The number of controls might seem crazy to someone wishing to recreate something quickly, but if you’re used to working with synths, this can be friendly. Of course, better options are available, but this indeed delivers what it promises.
2. Embertone Whistler Ensemble
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A dedicated library for generating good-sounding whistles.
Embertone has appeared previously in our articles with excellent libraries that can be specific and otherwise. When we say thorough, we mean it! An excellent example is today’s pick, called Whistler Ensemble. So be ready to get the perfect whistle samples for your productions in a simple and elegant interface display.
Whistles are very dependent on articulations, such as legato, as they are generated via airflow. To get this nailed perfectly, Whistler Ensemble counts on a “normal” legato with a very smooth slur and an “emo” legato, which can be more emphasized.
- Air control
To make your whistle more authentic, you can set the perfect amount of air, making it louder/stronger or quieter/weaker. If you turn it down to zero, the instrument sounds like a creepy sine wave, thus expanding your sonorities even further.
Whistler Ensemble is a professional tool; as such, it was recorded in the best way possible by Embertone. To ensure all your needs are attended to, this library was recorded with five simultaneous professional whistles that can ring very clearly when singing together in unison.
You can control your whistles usually via your MIDI keyboard; for that, you can fully use the velocity control and the MIDI CC values that can be attached to any keys you’d like. In addition, you can further set your playability via a dedicated MPE Control.
If you need to add just a pinch of reverb, the dedicated “Reverb” knob will attend to you wonderfully. This is essential to vocal ensembles because it sets the appropriate resonance and ambiance, generating a more vivid and authentic sonority for your whistle group.
This library is available for macOS 10.4 or higher (64-bit only) and Windows XP or higher (64-bit only). It runs only in Kontakt version 4.2.4 or higher, in standalone mode, and comes in VST and AU plugin formats.
Unlike other Embertone products, Whistler Ensemble is dedicated to a single and exclusive use. The recording process was masterful and provided excellent samples to work with, which translates into a more humanized and organic sonority. It’s nice to have up to five players whistling simultaneously in your song; creating melodies with it can be fun.
3. Rast Sound Whistle 2
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The updated version of this library is better than ever.
Rast Sound released the first version of the acclaimed Whistle library a while back, and now they’ve come up with the updated edition, entitled Whistle 2. You can expect multiple play modes and a variety of articulations, with clean and pristine nuances captured in each sample.
- Solo styles
You can use multiple solo styles to adjust your whistle tone better. There are plenty of them to select from, with diversified types. The best thing is that the updated version includes a two-octave range, perfect for most musical needs.
Some useful built-in phrases inside Whistle 2 can make your workflow more straightforward, allowing you to adjust them to your needs by tweaking and mixing them with your existing ideas. You can also count on unique patterns that give your melody character and personality.
Arguably one of the most critical articulations in vocal lines, legato is crucial to provide good glissandos and authentic runs. The second version includes an updated version of this articulation with more authenticity than the previous one.
Rast Sound added some advantageous effects to Whistle 2, which includes a transient shaper, delay, phaser, reverb, and “Color,” a specific filter to tame your frequencies better. The reverb has “Hall,” “Giant,” “Drums,” and “Noise” room types.
A remarkable step sequencer gives unique patterns to your melody. To get you fully covered, Whistle 2 comes with two different types: a “Volume” and “Filter” sequencer, each dedicated to dealing with a specific aspect of your sound.
- Key sensitivity
You can also adjust the acute sensitivity in Whistle 2. This provides unprecedented dynamics and control over how your whistles resonate and can be set via a dedicated knob almost at the center of your user interface screen.
- Solo styles
This library runs on macOS 10.14, 10.15, 11, and 12 (64-bit only) and Windows 10 or 11 (64-bit only). It runs in Kontakt Player 5.8 or 6. Free Kontakt Player is not supported.
This updated library from Rast Sound is terrific and hopefully will attend to your needs in every possible way. The clean and straightforward interface is pleasant to work with, which is an excellent point for Whistle 2. You can easily see every parameter and control and adjust them quickly. In addition, the samples are convincing enough to be used without appearing to be non-musical.
4. Libre Wave O’Malley’s Irish Whistles
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The most concise Irish whistle library available today.
Some instruments and styles may not be widely covered, but our modern era allows multiple options to emerge. O’Malley’s Irish Whistles are like that, providing a unique sonority worth the best Celtic and folkloric songs in Irish culture.
There are four whistles contained in O’Malley’s Irish Whistle: one tuned in D, another in Bb, C, and finally, a lower D. Each of these whistles features 2x round robin on long, extended samples and 4x round robin on shorter ones.
Each of the four whistle models features two sets of articulation. They are sustain and staccato, activated via MIDI CC, key switchers, or inside the software. Other options include legato, continuous dynamics, and a breath controller mode that can be set vividly or more softly.
Within the legato articulation, for instance, multiple ornaments can be achieved. In addition, O’Malley’s Irish Whistle can withstand cuts, taps, rolls, slides, glides, and much more, thus providing a very authentic instrumental experience.
- Velocity screen
You can easily set your instrument’s most appropriate velocity curve via a dedicated window at the center of your user interface screen. Then, by dragging the curve around, you’ll be able to determine the overall dynamics of each whistle model very quickly.
This excellent, independent effect can instantly be added or cut from every model or articulation inside O’Malley’s Irish Whistle. You can set it by tweaking the “Vibrato Intensity” and “Vibrato Rate” knobs.
This plugin is available for macOS 10.7 or higher (64-bit only), Linux Ubuntu 10.14 or higher, and Windows 7 or higher (64-bit only). It runs in VSTi and AU plugin formats.
Libre Wave deserves cheers for recording these extraordinary instruments directly from a friendly studio environment, which paid off as high-quality samples. These whistles were performed by Mimi O’Malley, who baptized the O’Malley’s Irish Whistle plugin. There are excellent articulations, controls, and options inside it, although it can be a specific choice for a virtual instrument.
5. Realitone RealiWhistle
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Everything you need to set up the best whistle tone is inside this library.
Bearing a simplistic look, RealiWhistle is a potent tool for dealing with whistle sounds. However, Realitone wanted to develop a consistent library that could deliver almost all possible good-sounding whistles, and it’s up to you to determine whether this is true.
RealiWhistle has two different whistling styles: the usual “Lips” style and a more fluid “Tongue” style. Each can be useful for a specific situation, but the first may work wonderfully for everything you do.
Realitone ensured all the appropriate dynamics were captured for each style. There are two dynamics involving three round robins each to be used, being responsible for the pleasant and realistic result coming from the library.
Ramps, or rises, can be very effective in telling whether your samples sound realistic or not. Luckily, in RealiWhistle, they tend to be more realistic, being affected in every played note for authentic and natural performances.
- Key switches
If you’re using your trusted MIDI keyboard controller to play music with RealiWhistle, then you’ll benefit from the key switches inside the software. They are displayed right on the interface, making it easy for inexperienced users and producers to enjoy.
- Ensemble mode
The ensemble mode is unique and can help lovely craft melodies and choir-like productions. As easy as it gets, this mode allows up to three additional whistle voices to be added on top of an instrument, which is more than enough to sound incredible.
This library is available for Kontakt and Kontakt Player version 5.8.1 or higher. It also runs in VST, AAX, RTAS, and AU plugin formats.
Realitone developed a consistent library that’s called RealiWhistle. The sounds are fantastic and convincing and can be used in multiple types of production. The articulations are realistic, and so is the sound of every sample file. The ensemble mode is an excellent addition that can easily make your track stand out.
Whistles are beautiful to listen to and can be a perfect sauce to add to your track. Humans have been doing it for a long time, so we have plenty of styles and fantastic melodies to work from and further explore. However, not often can we record these sounds so easy, and that’s where sample libraries come in utility.
Our list brought the best whistle virtual instrument plugins available in 2023, with some exceptional items that can be perfect for whatever need you may ever encounter when dealing with whistles. The best options are Embertone Whistler Ensemble and Rast Sound Whistle 2, with plenty of variety in terms of sounds and controls. Their interfaces are also enjoyable, which can help most users make the best of it.
Some unique choices, like Libre Wave O’Malley’s Irish Whistles, can be the lost item you were always looking for, and that’s why we thank companies like Libre Wave. Lennar Digital Sylenth1 is also included here, mainly because it’s a synthesizer capable of replicating whistle tones, although it can provide much more than that.
Always try the demos before buying the software, so you’re assured they’ll serve you well.
See you next time!
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Eduardo Cardoso is a musician and audio producer based in São Paulo, Brazil. He studied both music production and theory in college and has successfully launched his career as a solo artist in 2021. With over 10 years of experience with the music business, he currently acts as a session musician, music producer, audio editor, and content creator.