Reverb effects used to be a category in which freeware VST plugins used to be significantly less capable than their commercial counterparts. Things have drastically changed for the better in recent years with the release of plugins like Orilriver, OldSkoolVerb, MuVerb, Cloud Seed, and others. In this article, we’re listing the best free reverb VST plugins for PC and Mac.
Freeware reverb VST plugins were once notorious for sounding artificial and metallic, as well as noticeably worse than the paid plugins and hardware units. Luckily, we now have a range of excellent free reverb effects to choose from, from go-to mix reverbs which can handle most mixing situations to more specialized plugins which are intended for sound design purposes. We listed some of our favorite free reverb effects below, with mini-reviews to help you choose the right one for your digital audio workstation of choice.
You’re more than welcome to leave a comment on this page, sharing your thoughts about the featured plugins. Also, feel free to let us know if there’s a free reverb VST plugin that isn’t already included and should be added to the list.
OrilRiver by Denis Tihanov
OrilRiver is the best freeware reverb VST plugin you can download right now. It is a versatile, feature-packed, and great sounding stereo reverb effect that is on par with some of the best commercial reverbs on the market. Capable of delivering beautiful hall reverbs, as well as simulating the reverberation of smaller rooms, it is our go-to reverb effect in most mixing scenarios.
Apart from its excellent sound quality, OrilRiver also delivers in the user experience and workflow departments. The interface is well-organized, with an intuitive control scheme that makes it easy to tweak the dimensions and the tone of the simulated space to your liking. The plugin offers a choice between twelve early reflection models and five types of reverb tail, with additional room size, diffusion, damping, and modulation controls. Also included is a 3-band equalizer for further shaping the color of the reverbed signal. The two provided GUI skins allow the user to choose between a lighter and a darker color scheme.
The CPU hit is unusually low for a reverb plugin, especially considering the sound quality on offer. Orilriver consumes around 4% of available CPU resources on our test machine, leaving room for multiple reverb instances with different settings (small room, large hall, etc.).
More info: Orilriver (32-bit & 64-bit VST/VST3 plugin for Windows & macOS)
+ Fantastic sound and lovely UI
+ Low CPU consumption
- Limited to room and hall reverbs
OldSkoolVerb by Voxengo
OldSkoolVerb is our second favorite all-around reverb plugin. It delivers all the basic reverb types while sprinkling a bit of vintage digital reverb flavor on top. The plugin includes five different delay modes (room, hall, plate, and more), along with a 3-band equalizer, pre-delay, time, stereo width, and damping controls.
Loosely mimicking the sound of classic reverb units by Lexicon and Eventide, OldSkoolVerb is a decent freeware alternative to plugins like UltraReverb ($199), PSP 2445 EMT ($149), TSAR-1R ($99), BREVERB 2 ($169), and others. An extended version of the plugin called OldSkoolVerb Plus (49.95) is also available, adding a powerful spatialization module to the feature set of the freeware edition.
More info: OldSkoolVerb (32-bit & 64-bit VST/VST3/AU plugin for Windows & macOS)
+ Great sounding reverb with a vintage vibe
+ Five reverb modes to choose from
- Plus version ($49.95) required to unlock spatial controls
Sanford Reverb by Leslie Sanford
Sanford Reverb is another excellent choice for a free reverb VST plugin that covers all the basics. It features 3-stage early reflections adjustments for the left and right stereo channels with volume, pan, and time controls for each stage. The reverb tail section features a freeze button and pre-delay, time, and damp adjustments. The reverb signal can be filtered before it reaches the output and modulated with adjustable speed and depth.
The plugin’s interface is nicely designed and well-organized, with similar controls grouped into sections to avoid confusion. The CPU hit is reasonably low, making Sanford Reverb another strong contender for a go-to freeware reverb plugin. The only real drawback is that Sanford Reverb works in Windows-based digital audio workstations only.
More info: Sanford Reverb (32-bit & 64-bit VST plugin for Windows)
+ Adjustable early reflections
+ Low CPU consumption
- Only works on Windows
Cloud Seed by Low Profile
Whereas Orilriver, OldSkoolVerb, and Sanford Reverb are the best freeware options for a general purpose reverb, Cloud Seed is the way to go if you need a huge 80s-style reverb effect. You can think of it as a freeware alternative to commercial plugins like Valhalla Shimmer ($50) or even Eventide Blackhole ($199).
More of a special effect than a mixing utility, Cloud Seed can transform any sound into a wonderfully lush, evolving pad. Not a plugin you’d use to recreate natural spaces like rooms and small halls, but perfect for simulating huge halls and surreal spaces. It is the kind of tool every sound designer needs in their arsenal.
Cloud Seed was developed with C# and C++ and only works in Windows-based VST host applications. It doesn’t emulate any particular hardware reverb unit, but perfectly captures the character and tone of vintage reverb effects of the 80s.
More info: Cloud Seed (32-bit & 64-bit VST plugin for Windows)
+ One of the best sounding free reverb plugins
+ Detailed controls
- Limited to simulating huge spaces
- Somewhat higher CPU consumption
Ambience by Magnus
Next up in the epic reverb category is Ambience by Magnus. A classic reverb VST plugin that’s been around for ages, Ambience still manages to impress with its full sound and clean reverb tales that stand strong even by modern standards. Ambience truly shines as a specialized reverb unit for emulating massive spaces and surreal cosmic atmospheres. It also features a gate module for achieving the signature 80s gated snare sound.
Once considered a CPU hog, Ambience runs very smoothly on modern computers. The user interface could do with a refresh, especially in the size department, although it’s still large enough for use on screens that aren’t 4K. The plugin was re-released as open-source in the meanwhile and compiled for use on 64-bit Mac systems. Unfortunately, the Windows version of the plugin will only work in 32-bit VST plugin host applications.
More info: Ambience (32-bit VST plugin for Windows, 32-bit & 64-bit AU plugin for macOS)
+ Capable of emulating huge spaces
+ Detailed controls
- Windows version is 32-bit only
- The user interface needs a refresh
MuVerb by MuTools
MuVerb is another great reverb plugin for emulating large spaces. It is the native reverb effect in MuTools MuLab but is also available as a VST plugin for Windows and macOS. MuVerb sounds fantastic and will do wonders on synth sounds, drones, or any other mix element that needs to sound huge. The sound quality comes at the price of higher CPU consumption, though.
The user interface is fairly simple, and MuVerb doesn’t have much to offer in terms of versatility. It shines at emulating large halls and the Turbulence controls further expand its sonic palette to irregular spaces like caverns and holes. MuVerb is another plugin on this list that is more of a sound designer’s secret weapon than a conventional mixing tool.
More info: MuVerb (32-bit & 64-bit VST plugin for Windows & macOS)
+ Huge sound
+ Capable of simulating irregular spaces
- CPU hungry
Riviera by NuSpace Audio
Riviera is a rather unique reverb plugin in that it is a combination of an algorithmic and a convolution reverb. It uses some smart DSP coding to reduce the CPU consumption while delivering very realistic emulation of room, plate, string, and other reerb sounds.
More info: Riviera (32-bit & 64-bit VST/VST3/AY plugin for Windows & macOS)
+ Great sounding and versatile reverb
+ Low CPU consumption considering the sound quality
- Slightly confusing interface
- Not exactly easy on the eyes
Mverb by Martin Eastwood Audio
Mverb is one of the more popular freeware reverb plugins due to its perfect mixture of simplicity and sound quality. The streamlined user interface and the small number of control parameters make Mverb very easy to use, whereas the underlying algorithm makes it one of the nicer sounding reverb effects around. Unlike the majority of reverb plugins on the market, Mverb is based on Dattorro’s figure-of-eight reverb structure which results in a sound that’s more natural and pleasant than the regular comb filtering approach to reverb simulation.
Mverb is also surprisingly versatile for such a basic-looking plugin. It won’t deliver the greatest of hall reverbs and the most realistic small room ambiances on the market, but it covers all the basics required for everyday mixing projects.
Mverb is a strong candidate for a go-to reverb effect if you find OrilRiver and OldSkoolVerb a bit too advanced or cumbersome to use. Everything can be achieved in just a few mouse clicks in Mverb, with a decent range of room and larger hall reverbs. The plugin is open-source and ported for use on Windows, Mac, and Linux machines.
More info: Mverb (32-bit & 64-bit VST/AU plugin for Windows, macOS, Linux)
+ Simple UI and decent sound
+ Fully cross-platform
- Tiny GUI
- Limited to room and hall simulation
TAL-Reverb 4 by Togu Audio Line
TAL-Reverb 4 is similar to Mverb in the sense that it combines great sound and decent versatility in a simple package. The interface only features six knobs and a single button, making TAL-Reverb 4 a good choice for users who don’t like spending too much time tweaking controls.
The algorithm is adjusted to sound good on a wide range of sound sources, which makes sense since the plugin is based on the reverb effect used in Togu Audio Line’s excellent TAL-Sampler virtual instrument. The sound is very diffused and particularly suitable for long reverb sounds. It’s worth noting that TAL-Reverb 4 can only be used on stereo sources.
More-info: TAL-Reverb 4 (32-bit & 64-bit VST/AU/AAX plugin Windows & macOS)
+ Good sound and simple controls
+ Low CPU consumption
- Stereo sources only
Reverb SOLO by Acon Digital
Reverb plugins don’t get any more streamlined than Reverb SOLO. Whereas a full-featured plugin with multiple control parameters is required in most situations, sometimes you just need a quick reverb effect to add to a channel and dial in the proper settings as quickly as possible. Reverb SOLO was designed to do just that with its simple one-knob interface and plug-and-play workflow.
Developed by Acon Digital, the company behind the popular Verberate reverb effect and the excellent free chorus VST plugin called Multiply, Reverb SOLO is a serious mixing tool despite its simple looks. The central knob is a macro control which simultaneously alters the size and the tone of the reverb effect, transforming from a small room to a large hall in a single movement. The dry/wet slider on the bottom is used to control the volume of the reverb effect.
More info: Reverb SOLO (32-bit & 64-bit VST/AU/AAX plugin for Windows & macOS)
+ Simple plug-and-play workflow
+ Decent sound
- Lacks any advanced controls
The extended list below features some of the additional free reverb VST plugins that are worth checking out but weren’t included in the main list. These bonus plugins are listed in no particular order.
- Protoverb is an experimental reverb effect by U-He. It is a freeware plugin which was released to test and improve U-He’s new reverb algorithm by gathering feedback from the users. The plugin’s algorithm creates as many room resonances as possible, resulting (most of the time) in a very natural sounding reverb. The only way to program Protoverb is to randomize its internal parameters, although the current settings can be saved as text strings for later use.
- SAFE Reverb is another interesting project which includes help from the user base in its development process. The users can save custom presets to the cloud while also being able to directly access the presets saved by others. SAFE Reverb plugin currently comes with hundreds of custom patches to choose from, all submitted by fellow producers from around the world.
- Tila2 is a freeware room reverb VST plugin by signaldust. Developed specifically as a room reverb effect, Tila2 sounds very natural and life-like. The only problem is the high CPU consumption which makes it less suitable for use as a go-to mixing tool.
- TimeVerb is a simple reverb by GSi and was featured in the main reverb list until Acon Digital released Reverb SOLO. Still, TimeVerb is worth a look if you’re looking for a super-simple and lightweight reverb effect to add to your DAW.
- epicVerb is a free reverb effect by Variety Of Sound, a developer behind some of the best free saturation VST plugins on the market. While sounding great, epicVerb is only available for 32-bit VST plugin hosts on Windows, which is why we moved it to the bonus section.
For more freeware plugins and instruments, return to our Free VST Plugins page.