Hey all,

Anyone know of any virtual instruments that have some good chip-tune like capabilities? I have some of the Native Instruments stuff like Abysnth and FM8, etc. Those will be looked through as well - just wanted to see if you all had any suggestions.

I have heard Fruity Loops has a good set, but I havent had much experience with that program in the past decade of its development.

Anyone know whats up?

  • C3

7 Answers 7


Following up from my previous answer, I have just seen this article and thought you might find in useful: http://www.musicradar.com/news/tech/9-of-the-best-chiptune-vst-plug-ins-554428

Hope this helps.

  • 1
    I have died and gone to NES heaven! This hit the nail on the head dude! Thanks for this - went ahead and got the TweakBench bundle. At 5 bucks its a steal!
    – C3Sound
    Commented Jul 28, 2012 at 2:29
  • Nice one. Let us have a listen some time.
    – Bit Depth
    Commented Jul 28, 2012 at 23:18

http://www.plogue.com/products/chipsounds/ is probably your best bet.

I've heard some people play with retro trackers as well (e.g. FamiTracker).


It depends on what you are trying to achieve. If you want to just create some chiptune like sounds then this can be done with virtually any synth by just using only one or two oscillators, little or no modulation, only simple effects and then putting it through a bit crusher to give you that 8-bit sound.

If you want to create a true chiptune track you are best to use software that is based on the original systems as it will constrain what is possible and force you into using sounds and song structures that were typical back in the day. I have used with good affect MilkTracker as an emulation of some of the original systems and I'm also fond of LSDJ for the gameboy (you can run it as an emulation if you don't have an original gameboy.)

Have fun.


http://www.ymck.net/magical8bitplug/index.html - Designed to emulate NES synths, works well

http://www.kvraudio.com/product/chip32_by_sam - Very close to NES also, a bit more neutral

(Both of those are free)


8bit old school nintendo sound FX


if you have licensed native instruments Reaktor there are a few nice ensembles folks have made for this in the native instruments reaktor user library you can download and check out.

a search for "retro" brings up a few


Here's a nice starter tutorial for FM8 retro sound design.


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