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Serum VST Plugin – A Complete Guide And Review

Photograph of the blog post author, Craig Brown

Craig Brown

10.3.2020

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Heard of Xfer’s Serum VST plugin but want to know more about it before you invest your hard-earned cash? Here’s a complete guide and review for you!

What Is Xfer Serum VST?

Serum is a wavetable software synthesizer plugin created by Xfer Records. It uses wavetable synthesis to create electronic sounds. Xfer Records is well known for their nifty LFO Tool. LFO Tool is an FX plugin for both Windows and Macintosh. It gives music producers the artistic freedom to create tremolo, auto-pan, sidechain compression, amongst other cool features, including the infamous dubstep wobble effects. 

xfer serum vst plugin

Serum expands on the LFO Tool feature in this dream VST plugin. High-quality sounds, complexities with ease of use and its outstanding visual display, make this VST plugin stand out in a sea of many software synthesizers.  With its luscious pads, beastly basses and refined diverse toothed leads, this critically acclaimed visual beasts stand out in the crowd. It has quickly become the most popular software synthesizer for music production.

The Basics

You can get the Serum VST for free as a free trial. This serum plugin demo is available for example from Splice. So how much is the serum plugin usually you ask? On Splice, you can rent to own the latest version at the end of your free trial for $9.99/mo. for 19 months.

Serum VST works with a host of music workstations such as FL Studio, Ableton Live, Logic Pro and a host of other programs. You can get Serum advanced wavetable synthesizer on the Xfer Records website. It’s available for MacsOS X 10 or later and PC with Windows XP or later. Serum works with 64-bit VST, AU or AAx compatible software.

So Why Use Serum & How To Use The Serum VST?

Serum VST overview


Sampler


Serum is also a sampler. You can create new and unique sounds with Serum, including taking samples from vocals or instruments and modifying them with the wavetable editor to create new sounds.

Wave Machine


You can create interesting and inventive sound design with Serum real-time wavetable animation. Serum lets you custom design or utilize imported waveforms.

However, if you are not looking to do your own sound design, this production software comes stocked with a large variety of high quality presets. You can quickly manipulate the oscillator’s sound with easy to use visual features or keep the sound as is.

Presets

I use Serum for a lot of my electronic sounds and whenever I have to compose for a brief with a short deadline. I can easily comb through the high quality presets and do a quick manipulation of the sounds if needed. There are 450 presets and 144 wavetables that are all compartmentalized based on various categories.

Modular Modulation 


Music production VST modulator

Unlike other VST plugins, Serum has a simple and easy way to “drag and drop” routing parameter assignments. Example dragging and dropping “envelope”  or “LFO” Therefore making the sound design process quite easy. You can easily add LFOs or envelopes to animate and manipulate your sound and effects. You can also use Serum to manipulate waveforms in real-time during playback. The modulation panel is quite detailed and easy to use. The panel features 4 macro controls, 3 envelopes and 4 LFO modules. 



Effects


plugin effects

There are 10 built-in effects patches. These patches consist of reverb, delay, distortion, compressor, eq, flanger, phaser, chorus, filter and hyper/dimension. Hyper/Dimension is a dual effect, combining 2 separate delay effects that entails various ways to manipulate the effect. You can also rearrange the signal chain to optimize the effects of your audio by simple drag and drop. These effects give you a variety of options to add cool textures and spatial dimensions to your sounds. 





Oscillators 


xfer serum oscillator


Serum has dual wavetable oscillators which
 allow you to create a large variety of sounds. These oscillators are ultra-clean in sonic quality. There are about 100 factory presets. Including a sub-oscillator and noise oscillator with over 200 unique sound options. You can import your own sounds or download presets from a 3rd party. 





Filter

Serum plugin offers an outstanding 75 filter options. A stark contrast to other synths with only single-digit options. The filtering enables many ways of creative control over the filter such as cutoff, drive and resonance. Therefore these options allow you to manipulate the filters according to your creative vision. 

Audio Quality


Serum’s audio quality is out of this world! The VST has the technology known as aliasing. Aliasing is where digital waveforms produced by a synth are actual advanced algorithmic predictions of what the sonic waveform will be. A lot of synths have a less predictable alias technology. Serum synthesizer has the ability to alias those waveforms much faster, therefore creating a super high-quality sound. I like to call Serum’s alias technology “Super alias” or “Advanced alias” technology.



oscillator music production plugins reviews

Serum VST Pros

  • Ultra-clean morphable oscillators that are easily manipulated to your liking.
  • Superb, slick visual display in real-time.
  • “Drag and drop” features that make it easy to change your sounds.
  • 10 sound effects with unique capabilities.
  • Cool synthesizer with an easy learning curve. 
  • Fast and Intuitive interface.
  • Limitless modulation options.
  • Massive variety of complex filters compared to other synths. 
  • Serum offers Free lifetime updates.

Serum VST Cons

  • Although there are several CPU saving features, Serum is very taxing on CPU, causing a lot of strain on your computer.
  • The high-quality sounds can be a bit clinical and too electronic if you are seeking mostly warm organic sounds. However, there are ways to design warmer sounds or getting more organic sounding presets from a third party.
  • There is no onboard arpeggiator.

As you can see, the positives far outweigh the negatives in this super cool VST. If you are an electronic producer or synthesis enthusiast, this must be a definite addition to your new synth collection!

Conclusion On Serum VST

serum vst guide

Serum music production software is great! The Serum synth: wavetable synthesizer is amazing! It’s super handy with super clean sounds. It’s easy to use and access with an easy learning cave. It gives you the chance to confidently make the sounds you hear in your head. Get it! blaze your own signature sound with serum as a producer and rise to your full potential making the music you want. 

What Next?

Hopefully, you enjoyed this article and have the confidence to go and try this out for yourself! Feel free to share this with anyone else you think it might help. There are plenty of other guides like this on our blog so make sure to have a look. Also, let us know if there any topics you’d like us to cover!

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