If you want your vocal mixes to sound clean and pleasant, then you need to use deesser plugins.
Deesser works with sibilance and helps to reduce harsh sounds produced by letters such as S, T, F, C, etc.
It’s the main tool for mixing vocals but it can be used for different instruments such as cymbals, hi-hats, and even guitars.
What’s The Best DeEsser Plugin?
Here is my list of the best deesser plugins with great features, sound, and overall quality.
1. FabFilter Pro-DS
FabFilter Pro-DS is an intelligent and very powerful deesser plugin that offers great features and easy to use interface like all plugins from this team. This is a great deesser not only for vocals but for any instruments. With features such as Allround, it can transform into a high-frequency limiter that can be used with drums.
With the FabFilter deesser VST plugin, you can do various things such as wide and split bands, process single vocals, set threshold and range, and much more. Also, the interface is so intuitive and modern that it makes it much easier to work with this plugin.
FabFilter Pro-DS Features:
- Single Vocal & Allround options
- MIDI learn
- Side chain input meter
T-De-Esser is a very interesting plugin with powerful features. Although this is a pro plugin, it also offers a free version with simplified and limited options. It has a very natural and transparent sound and you can remove unwanted harshness from vocals or other tracks.
And the features of this deesser plugin are amazing. you can set the amount of attenuation, control different parts of the frequency range, set intensity, sharpness, and other options. Also, it comes with high cut and saturation filter options.
- Great for vocals and instruments
- Frequency range control
- High cut filter
3. Weiss Deess
Softube Weiss Deess is a beautiful and one of the best deesser plugins on the market. The interface is slightly different from other plugins on this list and it reminds me of analog gear. The layout of the interface is very simple which makes working with it a pleasant experience. It beautifully reduces sibilance in vocals and harshness in hi-hats and cymbals.
The plugin has a very low latency which is a great option to have. Also, it offers dual-band action which allows you to go in-depth and make surgical edits. You can control each band separately which is one of my favorite things about this deesser plugin. Weiss Deess is a great mixing tool but also can be used for mastering too.
Weiss Deess Features:
- Dual-band action
- Various filter shapes
4. SSL DeEss
SSL DeEss is another great plugin for reducing and cleaning vocal tracks from harsh sound. However, you can use it for other instruments such as drums and guitars. I love the interface and how simple it is to work with this deesser VST plugin.
This plugin offers some of the greatest features such as relative threshold which allows you to maintain dressing response and the ability to restore high frequencies after dressing. Also, the interface looks very modern and the navigation between different settings is very easy.
SSL DeEss Features:
- Native support of Apple M1
- Relative threshold
- Split and Broadband processing
5. Tonmann DeEsser
Tonmann DeEsser is perhaps the most popular free deesser plugin. It’s a lightweight, simple, yet powerful tool to get rid of harsh sibilance and make vocal tracks cleaner and more pleasant. Although it’s a free plugin and the interface looks a bit old, the features it offers and the result you get are great.
The plugin allows you to choose various settings and options like bandwidth, wideband and low pass, threshold, attenuation, release, and look-ahead. Also, you have the stereo output meter and listen button. If you have never used a deesser and want to give it a try, DeEsser by Tonmann would be a great option.
Tonmann DeEsser Features:
- Stereo and mono modes
- Adjustable center frequency
- Look ahead option
If you don’t know how they work, you can read my deesser guide for beginners which will give you a better understanding.
6. Sleepy Time Lisp
Another great free deesser plugin is Lisp by Sleepy Time DSP which offers great features and overall quality. It has a simple interface with a couple of switchers and knobs. You get options for reduction, attack, release, and stereo mode.
But cool features are in the second section where you can adjust sensitivity, sibilance range for low and high frequencies, and an option to choose the Q value and add smoothness for natural sound.
Sleepy Time Lisp Features:
- Sibilance range
- Hz smooth
Deessing plugins are great tools to make vocal tracks amazing and remove all the sibilance harshness. These are the best deesser plugins you can find and you can use them on vocals or any other tracks such as drums or guitars to remove unpleasant sounds.