• Orçun Ayata

Why you should stick with the stock plugins


I love talking to people about music-making. I love to hear their approaches to things so that I can learn from them. I also talk with the beginners and try to help them with their confusion. Most of the time, they think that they need some kind of plugins to make better songs. They tend to think that the problem is the tools.


It seems like a harmless habit but it’s too dangerous. Because you hide the truth from yourself by doing that. Yet you don’t aim to solve the real problem. The truth is that you don’t have the experience of the person that you envy. And you can’t make production or a mix like him/her if you have all the plugins that she has.


The reason we tend to think like that is the capitalist world we live in. We believe that we can have anything with enough money. Yes, we can hire a person who can teach us everything about music production. But it’s pointless if we don’t practice it ourselves. We have to put our time to be good at any skill. And making music is not an easy one.


I encourage you to stick with the stock plugins that your DAW has. Try to do the same thing that the person does in the tutorial in another way. If a trick is done with an expensive compressor plugin you try to do that with your stock one. You won’t hear any difference between two compressors at the beginning of your career anyway.


Technology always changes and there will be always some fancy plugins that you don’t have. But the most important thing is what you can do with the tools that you have right now. You can create amazing things with those stock plugins because they’re pretty good. I bet that you don’t know how to use them properly. So make time to learn how to use them.


Most beginners think that you can’t make professional work with stock plugins. It would be accurate ten years ago, but now they are pretty good. I always use modulation effects, amp simulations, and pedal simulations of Logic Pro. I use the stock compressor every day. There are thousands of examples of this. Perhaps one of them is in your playlist. Professionals don’t care about the tools, they do their best with what they have. If you can’t finish a professional craft with stock plugins, possibly you are the problem. Consider this.


Let’s assume that you know all the stock plugins considerably, and you want some excitement in your life. Still, you don’t have to purchase new plugins because there are hundreds of free ones. And they are pretty good too. Most professionals use them every day. Besides that, sometimes plugin companies make their own plugins free for a limited time. Follow the market and read blogs to hear about the news.


If you insist on buying new plugins I have a suggestion for you too. It’s simple. Ask yourself if this tool will make your work much better. Also, some plugins save you time. Therefore you can consider this if you lack time -like everyone.


Sometimes I dream about a plugin but I ask myself that question. Sometimes I say yes. In those times, I take that plugin to my wishlist. I’m on a budget, so I have to decide which one is essential. I realized that I take out half of them from my wish list after my hype is over. Also, there will always be sales. It would be better to wait for them. At least, there will be a Black Friday or a Christmas Sale.


Conclusion


We all experience this. We think we can’t make a good song because we don’t have that fancy plugin. But music has never been like that. Tools are important, but not essential. You can make a great song with a guitar and your vocal. There are thousands of examples of that. So, think about it twice when you want to buy a certain tool in the future. And don’t buy it if it’s not essential for you. Be an expert on your stock plugins. After that, buy only the ones that will make your songs much better.



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