Best De-Esser Plugins: Top 9 Paid & Free De-Essing Plugins!

Best De-Esser Plugins


Every recording and mixing engineer that works with vocals should already be familiar with this process called de-essing. We will be brief about it and just share our thoughts about it with the newcomers – this is a process where you work on the sibilances of the vocal that are found in the upper area of the frequency field, especially on points where the artist over-exaggerate the letters S, SH, TS and similar sounds or words that have such sounds in them.

Whenever you find yourself in need of such a process, we only want to say that you need to be really careful and not overcut these areas, because you might end up adding a lisp to the artist’s performance and make it worse instead of improving it.

Well, in this article we are going to focus our time more on finding the best de-esser plugin for your needs and we are going to list some of the most famous ones that you can get to get it right. So without running all around the internet in search of such plugins, we have a bunch of choices here to ease up your search. Below you can find all the models we chose, plus you are going to find some free models below the premium ones. Stick around!

Best Premium De-Esser Plugins

1. Renaissance DeEsser by Waves

The first on the list that we are going to share is one that we most frequently use if we are in need of fast and easy de-essing. The Waves Renaissance DeEsser plugin makes the process really easy because you will not be overwhelmed with a lot of options to pick from and you will find its user interface to be really friendly and simple.

You will be able to use this plugin on many other sources that are not only vocals but are in need of trimming some of the sibilance areas in the recording. No matter if you need it for mixing, tracking, or mastering – or even for live events – the RDe Esser will sort it out for you.

The interesting thing about this plugin is that you will maintain the musicality of the recording without ruining it since you will be able to surgically attack the problematic area and reduce it flawlessly. Say goodbye to your ear-piercing sibilances for good!

Another great point about this plugin from Waves is that it mixes the original technologies and processes used in other plugins from Waves, such as Waves C4 and R-Vox. That will ensure you to have an efficient end product that will be up to the industry standards.

Some features that separate this plugin from the others are the phase coherent crossovers and thresholds that are adaptive to your needs. Also, the visual aid will only give you the needed guidance on where exactly you need to apply the de-essing and be precise about the process. I highly suggest it since it proved to be really helpful in my productions.

Renaissance DeEsser by Waves

Check RDeEsser Here!

2. FabFilter Pro-DS

Probably the next in line of being really famous and used by many of us is the Pro-DS plugin from FabFilter. This plugin is a bit more complicated and comes with more features if you are in need of such a thing – it will deliver really amazing results. This plugin will give you a nice mid-side processing feature that can be really helpful if you need to use it in the mastering stages of your production.

Even though it has some more features than the last plugin, it still has really intuitive interface that everyone will find its way around and use to perfection. Spend some time testing the features and you’ll see that is really easy. Again, really nice visual aids that will show you exactly what is happening in the signal and where exactly you are adding de-essing to the signal at hand.

With the Single Vocal setting on the plugin, you can easily find all the sibilant spots on the vocal that you need to treat and improve for later on. Really intelligent feature that certainly will help you out in both performance and speed.

Again, it is one of the best choices all around and you cannot go wrong with this one. The Pro-DS is a premium plugin and might not come at a really cheap price, which in our opinion is the only downside, but if you are serious about your craft, you will not care for it since you will have amazing results that will improve the signal you are working on.

FabFilter Pro-DS - Best De-Esser Plugins

Check Pro-DS Here!

3. Weiss Deess by Softube

Even though the de-essing process is already included in the Weiss DS1-MK3, the de-essing processing can also be found on a separate plugin if you need to only de-ess and not process anything else. The Weiss Deess can be classified as a mastering de-esser plugin, but that doesn’t mean that you can use it on your single channels as well.

The plugin will offer you 2 channels for de-essing which are really nice for mastering purposes, but also if you need to address two separate areas in a single track. It also offers various filter shapes and you will have great control over the process, meaning that you can be precise about it and attack the problematic spots without any confusion.

As with many other premium choices, you will have a nice colorful and detailed display of what you are doing exactly and tailor the effect to your exact needs. The complete interface of the plugin really complements the work of the producer and you will have no hardships around it.

In terms of features, you can pick different filters of the de-esser, have the threshold knob, and also you will have the feature to check the isolated area in solo to double-check if you are doing the right thing. The thing that makes this a premium plugin is that it brings all the algorithms from the gold-standard DS1-MK3 to ensure you have the greatest sounding de-essing.

Weiss Deess by Softube

Check Weiss Deess Here!

4. Oxford SuprEsser by Sonnox

This is one other amazing de-esser plugin that was developed by Sonnox. The Oxford SuprEsser is a plugin that will help you find and fix the sibilant areas and do it professionally without any worries that you might be doing something wrong. The plugin is known to be really effective when it comes to reducing or completely removing sibilances.

Besides its usage on a regular vocal that needs some high-end trimming, the SuprEsser works really nice on softening every signal that has some harsh high frequencies in it and makes it more suitable for the listener’s ear. Also, it works really nicely on trimming some clicks and pops that can be found in the signal.

The interface of the plugin is created in that manner so the user doesn’t have any problems finding the way around it. Even though it doesn’t appear to be modern in design like some of the models we talked about above, it still performs to the highest possible quality.

The plugin is really effective when it comes to taming these problematic areas and is highly suggested by many users around various branches of audio production. They state that is really good to use it since it leaves the dynamic range untouched and will leave you with the same signal, only improved in the problematic spots. Even though is marketed as a de-esser, the plugin will give you some additional features that you can notice in the image below as well.

Oxford SuprEsser

Check Oxford Supresser Here!

5. Sibilance by Waves

Another plugin from Waves and that should not come as a surprise, since this developer works tirelessly to give us many new plugins. The Sibilance is one other plugin that is specialized in de-essing and nothing else stands out about it. This means that if you need de-essing, this plugin will do that for you.

The thing that sets this plugin apart from the other ones is that while the other plugins operate in the area from 4k to 14kHz, this one actually works differently from the other ones and work on the whole area at the same time and detects these areas that need to be treated, making it a nice choice to be used on the mastering stage as well.

The unique process that this amazing plugin has is the Organic ReSynthesis. As stated in the manual from Waves, this should give you glitch-free result that can be achieved with ease. This probably means that the plugin will keep the organic sound of the signal while only addressing the issued areas, making it more flatter while keeping the timbre and natural resonance.

We tried it out and we can freely say that all of the promises from the developer are truthful and the plugin will give you very natural sound and clean outcome, where some of the other de-essers on the market might fail. Easy to use, very professional and modern interface – another gem from Waves indeed.

Sibilance by Waves

Check Sibilance Here!

Honorable Premium Mentions:

Best Free De-Esser Plugins

6. SpitFish DeEsser

So we are already done with the premium models of the de-essing plugins and now we are going to dive into the 3 free versions that we found to be good for this job. The first one is the SpitFish DeEsser plugin from Digitalfishphone. An amazing freebie that will sort you out through the process easily.

No matter if you have a mono or stereo track on your hands, the plugin will do the process effectively, even though it is free software. An amazing choice for newcomers who are limited on budget and are in need of a free de-esser plugin.

In terms of the interface, it is really simple and easy to get around, with all the necessary features laid on in a normal matter. As seen in the image below, you will have a tuning knob, sense, and depth of de-essing and bypass as the most important features. Try it out if you need something good and free.

SpitFish DeEsser

Get SpitFish Here!

7. Tonmann DeEsser

Another in the list of free plugins we are going to mention the Tonmann DeEsser. Besides the amazing appliance on the vocal track, this plugin showed that is effective when added on guitars, brass and other tracks that are in need for some top-end attenuation.

Again, very simple plugin in terms of appearance, since you will have all the features presented right away. There are no some big and amazing visual aids, but you will atleast have some gain reduction meter to see how much of de-essing you are appling.

The Tonmann DeEsser will help you out to preserve the shimmery sound of the vocal, without ruining it. We really like how it sounds on vocal and for a free VST plugin, it is an amazing choice and we recommend it to everybody.

This plugin as well can operate in both mono and stereo and you are not limited in that manner.

Tonmann DeEsser

Get Tonmann DeEsser Here!

8. VeeDeeS by ViperITB

The VeeDees by ViperITB is one other free de-esser that will help you out with removing sibilances from your vocals or any track that you have at hand. This plugin probably is the simplest one in terms of appearance, so even a complete beginner will be able to use it with ease.

When it comes to features, the plugin has attack, release, and sensitivity knobs which sometimes are enough to tame harsh sounds like S, Z, and SH.

With these features, you can shape the de-essing process to your liking, and tame the harsh sounds, but only if you need slight adjustments and not something really noticeable. The plugin will save up your CPU since it is not heavy on the processor.

Really nice for freeware if you need something to add a little bit of tame on the higher sibilances in your recordings.  

VeeDeeS by ViperITB

Get VeeDees Here!

9. Lisp by Sleepy-Time DSP

And we are coming to the last free choice and probably the richest one in terms of features, the Lisp by Sleepy Time DPS. For a free plugin, we think it is the best choice if you are in need of a de-essing plugin.

For features and controls, this plugin probably has it all. You will have the attack and release knobs along with the big reduction knob to trim the sibilances. Aside from that, you have separate listening modes, for left, right, and both as well as processing in L/R and M/S which is truly an amazing choice.

The sensitivity feature, sibilant range feature, and processing mode will only give you more options to fine-tune the de-essing and end up with a really nice recording without any high frequencies that will pierce your ears.

We cannot recommend more this one for a freebie and we already tried it out and were really satisfied with it. With the automated listening feature, the plugin itself will detect those areas and help you out with the process, saving you some precious time. Really nice one – so try it out!

Lisp by Sleepy-Time DSP

Get Lisp Here!


We came to the end of this article that is here to help you out with the choice of the de-esser plugin that will be there for you in both good and bad times. A good plugin will save you a lot of headaches and time, so choose carefully and find the option that will suit your needs, genre, and types of vocals you mainly work with.

We hope that the explanations were clear enough and that you will pick some of the options we listed here. Until next time, clear some vocals with care and bang on!


Nikoloski is the founder and main content writer and editor of Mixing Tips. With his experience in audio engineering, mixing, and mastering for over 15 years, will provide hands-on experience and expertise in all the matters covered on this website.

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