SampleScience Releases FREE Rusty Piano Virtual Instrument


SampleScience offers Rusty Piano, a freeware virtual piano in 64-bit VST plugin format for macOS and Windows.

Rusty Piano is compatible with Windows 8.1/10 and macOS El Capitan to Mojave. Unfortunately, it’s not compatible with macOS Catalina or higher.

See also: Free Piano VST Plugins

This plugin looks to be right up my street, and I rarely pass up the opportunity to try a new piano. So, I’m disappointed to be missing this one as a Catalina user.

According to Sample Science, Rusty Piano is the result of recording an upright acoustic piano too hot on purpose. What I like about instruments like this one is that it’s about highlighting flaws instead of sugarcoating them. It’s a beat-up piano with character that only comes from a few lifetimes of use by countless players. Coincidentally, I learned on something similar, broken keys and all, and I wish I still had it.

Rusty Piano could suit a range of styles/genres, but due to the kind of piano and how it was recorded, I think it’s probably best when played sparsely. Simple counter-melodies work great for lo-fi hip-hop and even holding those real gutsy, Thelonious Monk-like chords that you want to sound a bit muddy.

Sample Science has captured a very honest sound and wrapped it in a simple GUI that allows you to make it even dirtier.

LFO Wave, Target, and Source are selected from central drop-down menus, with depth and rate controls to the left. One of the things I like is that you can assign the LFO source to the mod wheel, aftertouch, or velocity. I always feel that changing how you play/trigger something can lead to new ideas.

You can select your filter type (low/high pass), voice mode, and velocity curve from the same central menu. Filter controls are on the left, and to the right of the menu are controls for pan, volume, room reverb, and cutoff.

There are 3 voice modes, polyphonic, monophonic, and legato. The velocity curve might not seem like a huge feature, but with Rusty Piano being quite rough, it’s good to be able to dig in a bit more without sounding too harsh.

Lower down the GUI are ADSR, preamp, and glide controls. For such a simple plugin, there’s a surprising amount of stuff to play with.

You can never have too many pianos; if and when it’s available for Catalina and beyond, I’ll be waiting!

More info: Rusty Piano (64-bit VST plugin format for Windows & macOS, no macOS Catalina support)

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James is a musician and writer from Scotland. An avid synth fan, sound designer, and coffee drinker. Sometimes found wandering around Europe with an MPC in hand.


  1. Quoting:

    Hey amigooooos! We decided to make ALL the products on Ocean Swift Synthesis FREE for everyone to enjoy! These were a labor of love and our babies, but since Yaron joined NATIVE INSTRUMENTS and Fernando started his company Sounds2Inspire we had little time and could not offer commitment to support our products. We would be very glad if people continue to enjoy them and be inspired by our sound and the passion we put into everything you can find there. Have a go! A HUGE, but I mean really HUGE thank YOU for everyone who supported our journey in so many ways, it was a wild ride and brought us both to where we are now. Ocean Swift, signing off!

  2. paul sullivan


    thank you very much, money is bad for me right now, like a lot people , so what you did is very cool, thanks again

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