EQ plugins are essential for any music producer, no matter your style or genre. They are used to balance frequencies to give sounds the right amount of bass, mid-range, or high-end. Put simply, EQ plugins help sculpt a sound in the right way, adding or reducing certain frequencies to refine the audio signal.
Achieving the perfect balance doesn’t have to cost a fortune in the form of expensive EQ plugins.
There are many high quality free EQ plugins to choose from that give producers full control over sound frequencies.
This guide covers 6 of the best free EQ plugins available in 2022. Each VST on this list will help and expand your VST library, refine your basic music production skills and create better quality sounds. All without having to spend a penny. There are many different types of equalisers and they all have different uses. So if you're not sure which one to use, don't worry: we've got your back.
This list includes user recommended and highly reviewed VSTs. We've narrowed our selection down to 6 to save your time and only cover the best free EQ plugins that are actually worth installing.
Summary: best free EQ plugins
Best free EQ plugins - 2022
Nova by Tokyo Dawn Labs is a great all-round EQ plugin. It features a parallel dynamic equaliser with four bands, which each has its own fully dynamic section. This essentially provides full multiband compression, with EQ control.
Nova’s combination of compression and EQ tools make it a powerful mixing and mastering tool. Multiband compression is great for adding warmth to drums and adding extra control to frequencies in the mastering chain. This is something that is rare to come across in a free VST plugin.
Its interface is pretty easy to navigate if you have used an EQ plugin before, making it a suitable plugin for beginners. It has a responsive visual feedback display, where you can see how each frequency is being processed.
This free EQ plugin can be used for a variety of applications, thanks to its range of features. Additionally, Nova EQ has individual high and low pass filter sections.
Triple EQ from Blue Cat Audio might seem like a standard EQ plugin on the surface, but if you dig a little deeper, you’ll find some impressive features that make this free EQ stand out.
This EQ gives you a huge 80dB of range, with automatic volume levelling features that let you push frequencies to extremes without distorting the sound. In comparison to other standard EQs, such as Ableton’s EQ8 which offers 30dB of range, Triple EQ’s frequency range is pretty impressive. It offers simple EQ curve tools across different frequency bands, including high pass filters, low pass filters and full spectrum flexibility across a 20 Hz to 22k Hz range.
Another handy feature in Triple EQ is the single control for low shelf, high shelf and mid range frequencies. This makes it easy to control automation in your mix by combining several frequency parameters into one control.
Melda Productions are well known in the music production world, and make a selection of quality free plugins. MEqualizer is a free EQ plugin offering 6 bands, with 7 filter types for each. Additionally, this EQ has integrated tube saturation with harmonics control - which is great for adding character and warmth to sounds.
MEqualizer is easy to use and ideal for beginners, with a spectrum analyser that helps visualise sounds and frequencies. The only downside is that this free EQ plugin can’t be downloaded on its own. It has to be downloaded as part of the MFreeFXBundle. Though doing so will give you access to a range of 20 other free VST plugins included in the bundle.
This includes the MCompressor, MFlanger and MAutoPan.
In general, Melda Productions’ free VST plugins offer more features than most other freewares, and are high quality enough to be used in most situations.
PTEqx by Ignite Amps is a free EQ plugin with a classic touch. PTEqx is modelled on 3 famous vintage hardware EQs, developed to emulate the key characteristics of the original hardware.
It has 3 different equalisation modules, each designed to match the original sound. This makes PTEqx a great EQ for vintage music productions.
Another free EQ plugin from Tokyo Dawn Records, TDR VOS SlickEQ offers an easy-to-use mixing and mastering equaliser. It offers three filter bands, categorised into low, mid, high frequency ranges.
TDR VOS SlickEQ has 4 EQ modes: American, British, German, and Soviet.
And 5 output stages: Linear, Silky, Mellow, Deep and Toasted.
Each of these EQ modes characterise the sound in a different way, with the different output modes adding subtle harmonic distortions to create saturation and warmth. Additionally, it has an automatic volume levelling feature, which makes sure that the input volume levels are the same as the output levels.
Marvel GEQ is a free EQ plugin offering 16-bands of frequency control. This provides a more refined level of control than some other free EQs, with 8 input and output channels for a more professional sound.
The great thing about Marvel GEQ is that it is easy to make quick adjustments to EQ, both on single tracks and the entire master track. Its interface is simple and intuitive - it has 16 EQ bands, and that’s it.
Plus, you can even change the colour of the plugin’s interface, which is a nice touch from a free EQ VST.
Are free EQs worth it?
There are a range of high quality free EQ plugins available to download at no cost. Many are definitely worth downloading, since they offer a professional level of sound without the costs of more high end plugins.
The only downside is that you may find that there are less additional features in free EQ plugins compared to paid EQs. Though, if you are using the equaliser for general mixing and mastering, then this should not be a problem.
Free EQs are also great for beginner music producers who are just starting to learn the basics of mixing and mastering. You’ll usually find that your DAW comes with a standard EQ, and you can even find these in free DAWs.
Essentially, yes. Free EQs are definitely worth it, for many reasons.
Which is the best free EQ for beginners?
The best free EQ for beginners has to be TDR Nova from Tokyo Dawn. This is a fantastic all-round free EQ plugin, offering a range of features that will help beginners get to grips with the concepts of equalisation.
Additionally, it has a visual spectrum analyser, which will help any beginner understand how the sound signals are being processed.
Though, every other free EQ plugin in this list is suitable for beginners. It is mostly a case of which EQ you find the easiest to use, and the most suitable for your production needs. At no cost, it is easy to download a few free plugins and try them out.