Autotune is a term that we are all familiar with in music production. Most of us could do an impersonation of heavy autotune, and have an understanding of what it does. For those who wish to use it in music production or simply want to try it out, we bring you our picks for the best Autotune Plugins (VSTs) available for your DAW or Beat Maker. We will look at what autotune is, and then look at plug-ins. Join us as we review their prices, weigh up their pros and cons, and tell you our recommendations for purchase.
What Is Autotune (AKA Audio Tuning or Auto Tuning)?
Put simply, here is an Autotune definition: a program that corrects any pitch issues on a recording, either in post-production or in real-time.
An autotune program helps whether you are in the recording studio or performing live. Autotune tweaks or fixes the pitching of vocals, and makes sure that the vocals stay within the correct key.
The autotune effect is widely used by many studio personnel. It is a standard part of the production workflow in modern pop music, no matter the vocalist’s natural abilities.
How Does Autotune Work And How Do You Use It?
In simple terms, autotune takes any audio file and measures its pitch and key through a software audio processor device. It measures the recording against a specific key and pitch, altering or correcting it so that the pitch of a vocal is matched to an instrumental music recording or performance.
Want to know how to use autotune? The good news is that there are different ways, as autotune can be used both practically and creatively. Nowadays, it can be used stylistically, although it is more commonly used to rectify pitching errors in vocals. Whether you are using it to fix slightly off-tune vocals or to achieve the autotune effect used in many songs heard on the radio today, you will be sure to learn a lot in our rundown of the best pitch-correcting plug-ins on the market.
How Is Autotune Different From A Vocoder?
Vocoders and the vocoder effect are techniques used primarily in electronic popular music and hip hop. They give the vocals a synthetic sound by setting an instrument such as a synthesiser as the input to a filter bank and blending it with the vocal recording.
There are many plug-ins that can achieve this effect, and many DAWs come with plug-ins that have a vocoder preset available. A good example of this is Logic’s classic EVOC 20 synth. Without further ado, here are our picks for the best autotune plugins!
Best Autotune Plugins
Now let’s have a look at some of the best Autotune plugins and software available! If you’re looking for free autotune software and plugins only then have a look at our review of the best free autotune plugins.
1. Antares Autotune Pro by Antares Audio Technologies
Pricing – $399 | Standalone Plug-in
Considered by many to be the best autotune and pitch correction software, Antares has been at the top of the game for decades. Their software is used as the standard when it comes to the big leagues in many of the top recording studios worldwide. This is due to its ease of use and trusted reputation. After all, Antares do actually own the trademark “Autotune”.
Autotune started with Antares back in the mid-’90s after it was launched by Andy Hildebrand, a PhD specialist in digital signal processing. It became an instant hit, and quickly rose to fame after it was used in Cher’s 1998 classic “Believe”. Autotune has since been the go-to plug-in for many music producers and recording artists, and over time has been used even more creatively.
One of the best features of the autotune program is its ease of use and how simple it is to figure out while achieving a high level of accuracy and a natural tone.
Autokey Included For Faster Workflow
Trying to figure out the key of a song can be a time-consuming challenge for artists. It can be especially challenging for those with lesser knowledge of music theory, or those who lack the skill to tell by ear. With Antares’ autotune, this challenge is eradicated. The software comes with Antares Autokey, which detects the key of the song and sends it to the processor for a streamlined workflow.
Some of us like to stick with what we know when it comes to the way something functions, as it makes things easier due to muscle memory.
A benefit for the OG users is that they can switch to the classic auto mode they are used to, whilst still reaping the benefits and high-quality processing that Pro has to offer. Check the video below for more information.
As with anything, quality comes at a price. At almost double the price of Logic Pro X, $399 is steep for a standalone plugin. However, you can rest assured that it will get the job done with no hiccups.
2. Waves Tune Real-Time
Pricing – $69.99 | Standalone Plug-in & Bundle
Although not quite as notable as Antares Autotune, Waves Tune Real-Time is still one of the classics. Real-Time is used primarily for live vocal performances due to its accuracy, precision, and ultra-low latency.
It boasts the ability to achieve studio-quality, pitched vocals in a live setting without the need for manual post-editing. Due to this, Real-Time is the ultimate autotune option for many singers on tour.
Great for live performances on tour, this plug-in has super-low latency and delivers an outstanding result. You can also set your own presets for different songs, or for different parts in the same song.
High-Quality Audio Processing
Set your retune speed to 0.1 milliseconds or have it slow. However harsh you want your effect to be, you can be sure to always have a pristine human-like sound with no artificial artefacts getting in the way of the performance.
Requires Low Latency Computer System For Live Settings
Although the plug-in itself causes little to no latency issues, it does require a low-latency set-up to achieve its full potential. If you or your label’s budget allows for it, it is worth having a separate computer or MacBook for live audio and production purposes only.
Interface Learning Curve
You will want to make sure that you are aware of how the plug-in operates and what the parameters do to be able to get the most out of the software. It is unfortunately not as simple as just pressing one button and it doing the job for you. On the bright side, this can be a good thing, as it allows further manipulation of sound.
3. Celemony Melodyne
Pricing – $99 – $849 | Standalone plug-in
Melodyne is used by many studio engineers and producers due to its advanced capabilities. The software is able to create background vocals from a single vocal take. Furthermore, Melodyne boasts melody-building and time-stretching functionalities.
Melodyne’s highly advanced direct note access feature also allows for the singular manipulation of individual notes within chords and polyphonic recordings.
Choose from a selection of advanced algorithms designed for different instruments and types of audio including percussive, melodic or polyphonic. This allows you more choices to find what fits your recording and enables the best possible editing experience for whatever you are working with.
Ability To Adjust Timbre & Shape Sound
Use the “formant” tool and sound editor to colour the tone and adjust the characteristics of your recording while maintaining an authentic sound. See the video below for a tutorial on how to use the formant tool.
As with many programs, most of Melodyne’s best autotune features are only available if you purchase the full version. This makes sense because if you are paying the lowest price for the basic version, you are understandably going to get the most basic version.
There are 4 different options for Melodyne: Essential, Assistant, Editor and Studio. All are priced differently (starting from ‘Essential’ at $99), and offer more features as the price goes up. There are no free rides with Melodyne and if you want the best features and updates, you are going to need to splash out. Is it worth the investment? We certainly think so.
4. Reaper Reatune
Pricing – $60 | DAW
This is not a standalone plugin, but a great feature for those on a budget looking to increase the quality of a take and achieve a more professional sound. One big bonus is that Reatune is one of the cheapest options available.
Reaper‘s Reatune can be used to create harmonies, as well as fix out-of-tune vocals. This is a great alternative to Antares Harmony Engine for those on a budget who want big-sounding harmonies and choruses, but don’t want to spend $100+ for a standalone plug-in to do the job.
If you are new to Reaper, it may be worth reading our beginners’ guide to Reaper for an easy-to-understand rundown of what this DAW has to offer.
Low CPU Load
Reatune is another CPU-friendly autotune option for those with busy sessions and a lot of heavy processing. This is great for the low price Reaper comes at, not to mention all of the other amazing features the DAW has to offer.
Good For Users On A Budget
What you are getting for the price is impressive, not to mention that you get to trial the full version of Reaper for 60 days to see if it is a good fit for your needs and how you work. So essentially, you can try before you buy!
More Noticeable Tonality
The biggest downside to Reaper’s Reatune autotune feature is the audibly noticeable artefacts that start to pop up when pitch correction is applied. This is okay for beginners diving into music production who want to practice and improve, but not so great for audio engineers looking to achieve pristine, natural-sounding vocals and effects.
Lacks More Advanced Features
Again, you get what you pay for. Sure, Reatune does what it says on the tin and autotunes vocals, but you can’t go all out with gain, tonality, vibrato and pitch drift edits in the same way as some of the more high-end plug-ins.
5. Logic Pro Flex Pitch
Pricing – $199.99 | DAW
One of Logic Pro’s most popular autotune features is its flex tune mode, capable of advanced audio manipulation. It has many different algorithms for different types of audio signals and instruments.
For vocals, this is a flex pitch. Visual representations of notes can be moved into place, cut, glued and time-stretched. There is also the option to smooth or increase vibrato in the voice or change the drift from each word in or out of one another (as well as the gain). For a tool this advanced that comes with Logic, it is well worth the price for the entire DAW.
The only downside is its processing abilities and tonality. It is great for changing a few autotune problem areas in a take, but once you start moving things around too much, you start to notice the decrease in audio quality. If you require a plug-in or tool that has better processing abilities, it may be better to go with a standalone option.
As opposed to Reatune, what Flex Pitch has to offer is actually far greater in terms of how far you can go with sonic manipulation. You can also use Logic’s Flex tool to time-stretch using separate algorithms for different types of audio. This is similar to what Melodyne offers but on a more basic level.
Noticeable Audio Artefacts
Flex Pitch has been prone to bugs and glitches in the audio, especially in earlier versions of the software that have since been mostly smoothed out. Logic has since come a long way, but if you do too much editing or lower the vibrato any lower than 60% the audio still starts to develop a robotic tone.
The algorithm is less advanced and can mistake breaths for words or splits single words into two, causing a pop sound.
If you want to make the most of the Flex Pitch correction plugin, make sure to have a dry and clear recording to work with from the offset, although this should go for all recordings in general.
Closing Thoughts on Autotune
Ultimately, whatever autotune option you choose to go with really comes down to your budget, what your setup looks like, and your requirements.With this being said, Waves Tune Real-Time really does give you the best value for money, and is a good option for both beginners and experienced studio professionals and experienced artists.
Also, looking at what software YouTubers use is also beneficial. We recommend researching the Got Drums autotune app. The Got Drums autotune app, allows you to add harmonies, change keys, reverb, echo, modulation, and all kinds of cool stuff!
Many notable artists have had big hits through the use of autotune, such as Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Black Eyed Peas, Lady Gaga and Cher. So, why not yourself?
We hope you enjoyed reading this post and that it has given you some indication as to what plug-in or DAW to go with for ensuring that you or your artist’s vocals sound their best.
So, now you have heard our picks for autotune plugins to make your vocals sound even more amazing! Allow us to help you amplify your music, collaborate with others, and get your music in TV, film and more.
We've talked about how Travis Scott produces a very exceptional style of autotune vocals that many are trying to copy. So, what DAW does Travis Scott use? He, basically, uses three DAWs: FL Studio 11, Pro Tools, and Logic Pro X.What is the best autotune for PC? ›
- Antares Autotune. Price: $99-$399 depending on version. ...
- Celemony Melodyne 5. Price: $99-$699 depending on the version. ...
- Synchro Arts Revoice Pro. Price: $599. ...
- Waves Tune Real-Time. ...
- Steinberg Cubase Variaudio. ...
- Soundtoys Little Alterboy. ...
- GVST GSnap.
We've talked about how Travis Scott produces a very exceptional style of autotune vocals that many are trying to copy. So, what DAW does Travis Scott use? He, basically, uses three DAWs: FL Studio 11, Pro Tools, and Logic Pro X.Which autotune do rappers use? ›
Antares Autotune Pro by Antares Audio Technologies
Their software is used as the standard when it comes to the big leagues in many of the top recording studios worldwide. This is due to its ease of use and trusted reputation. After all, Antares do actually own the trademark “Autotune”.
- UAD 1176. One of the most famous and widely used FET limiting amplifiers of all time. ...
- UAD LA-2A. For a cool opt sound, you can't go wrong with an LA-2A. ...
- UAD Pultec. ...
- Waves Vocal Rider. ...
- Renaissance Vox. ...
- Waves Doubler. ...
- Antares Auto-Tune Pro. ...
- FabFilter Pro-Q 3.
At first glance Waves Tune and Antares Auto-Tune EFX+ both look very different but on one level they will actually deliver similar sound qualities: they both do vocal tuning corrections and the famous artificial tuning effect.What is FL Studio autotune called? ›
FL Studio has two tools that can do autotune for vocals. One is called Pitcher and the other is called NewTone. These tools are available in the signature edition and above of FL Studio. You can use them in other versions of FL Studio, but only in a demo format.What's better autotune or melodyne? ›
If this is the sound you're after with your vocals, then Auto-Tune will deliver where Melodyne can't. However, if what you are hoping for is a more transparent approach to the tuning, Melodyne is the best choice. When used properly, the vocals will be left sounding untouched but perfectly in tune.What is a good use of auto-tune? ›
Auto-tune is great for both live performances and the recording process. You can use it to give your vocals a melodic edge or to correct intonation. Whether you are using auto-tune for the recording process or live, you can create some very interesting sounds with auto-tune.What is a good amount of autotune? ›
If you're going for something more natural, though, you'll want to put in just enough retuning to perfect the sound without making it obvious. This will give you something that sounds natural and doesn't create artifacts. As a general rule, aim anywhere between 50 and 80 milliseconds.
1. MAuto Pitch. MeldaProduction, a renowned audio plugin company used and promoted by Deadmau5, was kind enough to create a completely free and fully functioning autotune plugin! This plugin give you options such as depth, detune, and speed, which are standard on most pitch correctors.What auto-tune does Lil Uzi use? ›
All audio vocal tracks apart from the intro have Antares Auto-Tune as the first plug-in. Uzi hears his Auto-Tuned vocals in his headphones while singing. We used to just have it on default, with a Retune speed of 20, but lately he has been like: 'Give me more Auto-Tune!What vocal software does Ariana Grande use? ›
A video posted on Grande's social media channels (opens in new tab) shows her hard at work in the studio, singing and editing vocals in a Pro Tools session.Does America's Got Talent use autotune? ›
Yes. Virtually every single talent show on television uses auto-tune. For those of you who want to hear the long version, here's why. Producers on shows like American Idol, The Voice, America's Got Talent, and The Four are most concerned with the production of their show.What artist made autotune popular? ›
T-Pain, however, brought Auto-Tune's abilities to the forefront in the world of hip-hop. Yet, he was also the one whose career was blunted while artists that followed him, such as Nicki Minaj, Travis Scott, Quavo and Lil Uzi Vert, profited from his influence.What song popularized autotune? ›
Auto-Tune was popularized by Cher's 1998 song "Believe". While Auto-Tune was designed to be used subtly to correct vocal performances, the "Believe" producers used extreme settings to create unnaturally rapid corrections in Cher's vocals, thereby removing portamento, the natural slide between pitches in singing.How do you autotune professionally? ›
- Choose Input type. First, I set Input type. ...
- Find your Key and Scale. ...
- Choose between Auto and Graph mode. ...
- Play with Formant and Throat. ...
- Don't change Transpose. ...
- Use Detune if you have a different reference pitch. ...
- Set up your Tracking. ...
- Choose Retune speed for your recording.
- Antares Auto-Tune Pro. ...
- Celemony Melodyne 5 Assistant. ...
- Soundtoys - Decapitator. ...
- Oeksound - soothe2. ...
- Fabfilter - Pro-Q 3. ...
- Pultec EQP1A. ...
- Universal Audio - 1176 Collection. ...
- Waves - CLA-2A Compressor / Limiter.
Vocal Cleaner puts your vocals through a rinse cycle, subtly taming harsh sibilance and removing intermittent noise. With simple threshold sliders and Amount dials for easy operation, this should be the first plugin in your vocal effects chain, taking the pain out of that initial stage of vocal processing.Is Waves better than UAD? ›
The UAD sounds the tightest but has the least low end content of the EQs. The Waves has the largest overall boost - Probably due to characteristics of the Q leading into the mid range as mentioned on the drums shootout. The UAD and the Waves are very similar here with the Waves having a slightly mushier low mids.
Are Waves Plugins Good? We have a mantra at the Hyperbits Masterclass that our students often hear – “If you want the best results, you need to have the best tools.” So the short answer is a resounding yes, Waves plugins are incredibly powerful.Do singers use FL Studio? ›
Yes, many professional musicians and producers use FL Studio to produce their music. From Hip Hop legends to EDM DJs, Classical composers, and everything in-between. The software has been used to produce songs/tracks from artists such as Katy Perry, Rihanna, David Guetta, Tiesto, and many more!Is autotune a VST? ›
Voloco is a simple free autotune VST that was designed for use exclusively as a creative tool. Don't expect to achieve subtle vocal pitch correction with Voloco. This is an intentionally robotic-sounding autotune plugin for use in electronic and urban music.What is autotune and which popular artists use it? ›
The first method of using autotune is the one you may think of first. It's where the vocalist sounds like their voice has been run through a robot — because, well, that's exactly what happens. Artists who made this style popular include T-Pain, Kanye West, and Akon. It's definitely a stylistic choice.Why do I sound bad with Auto-Tune? ›
Autotune uses software algorithms to quickly change the current pitch of a note to the desired pitch. This is not something a human being can do, therefore it tends to sound quite unnatural, even robotic.Why do artists use so much Auto-Tune? ›
While some may call this “cheating,” using autotune during a long, live show, can help the artist give a great vocal performance without worrying about their voice hitting too many sharp or flat notes.Can a bad singer use Auto-Tune? ›
I also think it is necessary to clarify that if a person sings badly, Auto-tune will not fix their voice, as many people think. The voice can be significantly improved with many tricks, Auto-tune is just one of them, and it doesn't have as much scope for action as people think.Can Auto-Tune make your song sound better? ›
It has also allowed musicians and producers to explore new creative possibilities. Autotune can correct your pitch while performing, producing, and creating unique vocal sounds. You can also create something completely original if you learn the right techniques.Can everyone sound good with Auto-Tune? ›
But, through correctly training your voice and ears, you can take anyone from not being able to sing to being able to perform live with AutoTune correctly. However, singing live nowadays isn't that important as you may think. Lots of incredibly successful singers can't sing live correctly even if they use AutoTune.Can Auto-Tune make anyone sound good? ›
Autotune can generally correct very small fluctuations in your voice, but it cannot make you into a good singer. Autotune cannot replace the depth and warmth of a human voice. Rampant use of autotune will make your voice sound artificial and people can easility detect that the voice has been tampered with.
- Figure Out the Key of the Song. ...
- Don't Go Too Hard. ...
- Don't Go Too Fast. ...
- Leave Some Sections Untuned. ...
- Tune Doubles Less Intensely. ...
- Know the Strengths and Limitations of Your Tuning Plugins. ...
- Combine a Few Different Types of Tuning Software.
In general, effects like high pass/low cut filters, subtle EQ, de-essers, and gentle compression/dynamics should be used before Auto-Tune in the effects chain. All other processing such as delay, reverb, spatial effects, distortion, etc should be applied after Auto-Tune.What singer uses Auto-Tune the most? ›
T-Pain is the king of autotune, and uses it so much in his songs that he sounds like a robot. He uses a lot of autotune. 17 Rihanna Robyn Rihanna Fenty is a Barbadian-American pop singer.How do I get natural autotune? ›
For natural, realistic sounding autotune, you'll want a slower retune speed (set it to where you barely hear it and then back it off a bit more) and maybe 10% flex tune to allow some wavering. That's it.Is Travis Scott Auto-Tune? ›
Artists like Travis Scott use Autotune with the retune speed on 100%. This basically means that there is no flexibility in the vocal tuning.Does Drake use auto tunes? ›
Drake uses a pretty significant amount of auto tune on most of his songs. He typically uses it when he sings on stage nags like “In My Feelings” and “Passionfruit”. I'm not sure of the percentage but all I know is that he definitely uses it. Which famous singer has used Auto-Tune in many songs?Does NBA YoungBoy use Auto-Tune? ›
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Thankfully, YoungBoy has cut back on the weepy Autotuned cheese he slathered over past projects like 2020's Top. Here, he deploys it strategically on choruses and a few fully Autotuned tracks like “Home Ain't Home,” his duet with fellow trap crooner Rod Wave.
Billie Eilish is a soprano singer, meaning she has a higher than average register, but Billie can reach some lower notes when she needs to.What voice does Ed Sheeran use? ›
Like many men in Pop, Sheeran is a lyric tenor, but with a slightly lower tessitura than some of his contemporaries. While he is sometimes identified as a baritone, he seemingly lacks the belting technique that would clearly reveal him to many as a tenor.What audio software does Billie Eilish use? ›
As for the DAWs used, Billie prefers using Apple's Logic Pro X as her digital audio workstation software for producing music. Logix Pro X is another big hitter in the pop music production industry. Coincidentally, these are also the two that Finneas also likes to use.
Demi Lovato is a light lyric soprano with fantastic vocal talent and control over her voice. She can sing high notes successfully, which can be heard in her live performances. But, like most singers today, her production team uses autotune to enhance her vocals and fix minor issues in the studio.Does Michael Jackson use autotune? ›
The Michael Jackson estate's music producers/operators also added autotune to some songs of Michael Jackson's posthumous albums named ''Michael'' and ''Xscape''. But no other than that, he never used autotune in his early albums and his 80s-90s albums. In conclusion, he used autotune for effects and pitch correction.Which voice changer has autotune? ›
MagicMic AI autotune voice changer is known as one of the best voice-changing software, and it certainly does its job. Not only can you change your voice during live streaming, but it also has a feature of auto-tuning now that lets you fix your distorted voice without any hassle.Are there any good free Auto-Tune plugins? ›
- Graillon 2 | Auburn Sounds. Graillon is the most popular free autotune plugin. ...
- MAutoPitch | MeldaProduction. ...
- Voloco | Resonant Cavity. ...
- GSnap | GVST. ...
- KeroVee | g200kg. ...
- TrapTune Free Edition | UnitedPlugins. ...
- x42 Auto Tune. ...
- Autotalent | Tom Baran.
Waves Tune adds a more human element by way of its detailed editing, but Auto-Tune EFX+ gives you a Humanize dial and while you don't get the detail, you get loads of added extra effects.What is the best VST plugin for vocals? ›
- Antares Auto-Tune Pro.
- Antares Harmony Engine.
- Melodyne 5 Essential.
- Waves Vocal Rider.
- FabFilter Pro-DS.
- Oeksound Soothe2.
Fabfilter Pro Q3 is probably one of the most advanced EQ vst plugins with features such as Linear phase mode, natural phase mode, mid/side processing, and dynamic EQ. FabFilter Pro Bundle is the industry's favorite mixing bundle, and many producers consider it a must-have VST plugin in 2023.Can auto-tune make your song sound better? ›
It has also allowed musicians and producers to explore new creative possibilities. Autotune can correct your pitch while performing, producing, and creating unique vocal sounds. You can also create something completely original if you learn the right techniques.What is the difference between pitch correction and autotune? ›
While pitch correction tools are primarily about fixing minor imperfections in vocal recordings, Auto-Tune can also be used as a stylistic choice, transforming the singer's voice into another instrument that can be edited and altered indefinitely.Why do I sound worse with autotune? ›
Autotune is considered bad as it can make vocals sound unnatural. As it uses software algorithms to reduce natural human pitch variations, it can suppress emotions in a vocal. Autotune also adds the temptation to settle for a subpar vocal performance, and rely on it to correct pitch post-recording.
Virtually everyone in the music industry today uses autotune, even just a little bit. It helps everything blend together by correcting any off notes that would distract the listener. It's pretty much impossible to sing perfectly in tune all of the time, so autotune is a subtle tool to tighten up a singer's performance.Why do artists use so much autotune? ›
While some may call this “cheating,” using autotune during a long, live show, can help the artist give a great vocal performance without worrying about their voice hitting too many sharp or flat notes.What reverb is most used on vocals? ›
They're also the easiest to fit inconspicuously into a mix. Room reverbs are appropriate for vocals, guitars, pianos, drums — just about everything. When used in moderation, these reverbs can add space to a source while maintaining an intimate, in-person character.
When trying to make your vocals smooth sounding, it's all about balancing high frequencies with low-mids. Attenuate your sibilance with a de-esser, equalizer, or with an analog emulation that dampens highs, then subtly increase low-mids to mask higher frequencies and add a warm, smooth quality.