VST Plugin Node

The VST Plugin Node loads an external VST plugin to process audio or melody/MIDI, and wraps it within itself. You can also create it by dropping a plugin’s DLL file into AudioNodes, which will automatically load the plugin within.

The VST Plugin Node can be used for whatever the loaded plugin can do. For example, if the plugin is an audio effect, it will typically have an audio input and an audio output, which will be represented as a regular audio input and output on the Node.

The VST Plugin Node supports GUI-less plugins, by creating sliders on the properties panel automatically for each controllable plugin parameter.

Caution: this Node is experimental and still under development, and is more of a proof-of-concept feature at this time. Some plugins may crash AudioNodes. Remember to save your project frequently. See the technical details and limitations & known issues sections for more information.


The VST Plugin Node automatically creates an audio input if the plugin supports it, and automatically creates a melody input if the plugin supports MIDI input.

Additionally, if the plugin has controllable plugin parameters, and you enabled automation on any of them, they’ll show up as control inputs, just like for any other Node.


If the plugin exposes controllable parameters, they each appear as a slider. You can enable automation on any of these.


If the plugin supports audio output, the VST Plugin Node creates an audio output automatically. Most plugins support an audio output.

Technical Details

The only supported plugin format at this time is VST version 2.4, 64-bit, as well as all 64-bit VST plugins compatible with the 2.4 VST specification (e.g. VST 3+ plugins with VST 2.4 wrapper), on 64-bit Windows.

Unlike references to opened audio files, paths to plugins are currently not converted to relative paths when saving, and instead the full absolute path is kept to reference the plugin.

Some plugins define more channels than they actually use, and AudioNodes makes no assumptions about whether these unused channels should be considered or not, they are simply up to the plugin. As such, channel mixing issues might occur; for example, if a plugin produces a stereo output but actually defines 32 channels, and this audio output is summed with a mono audio output (e.g. the audio output of an Oscillator Node), the mono audio is added to channel-0 of the plugin audio output, instead of being mixed to the correct stereo left/right channels. To work around this issue, a combination of a Channel Splitter Node and a Channel Merger Node can be used to create a channel limiter on the plugin’s audio output.

Limitations & Known Issues

  • The only supported format is 64-bit VST 2.4 (and compatible plugins, such as VST 3 wrapped with 2.4), and only on Windows at this time
  • Some plugins may not load, and some may even crash AudioNodes — please let us know when this happens (note: if you experience load crashes with your project, try restarting AudioNodes with experimental features disabled)
  • Some plugins define programspresets, or banks — switching between these is not supported by Undo/Redo inside AudioNodes, and doing Undo/Redo will only affect plugin parameters