Surge XT is a free and open source synthesizer that started life as a commercial synth from Vember Audio. Surge is available for Mac, Windows and Linux and is implemented as a VST3 module as well as an AU on Mac platforms. The 1.0 version of Surge was recently released, which is a rebuilt version built using the JUCE framework with additional features added.
Surge is described as:
A sound designer’s dream.
A friendly, open community.
Featuring many synthesis techniques, a great selection of filters, a flexible modulation engine, a smorgasbord of effects, and modern features like MPE and microtuning.
Surge XT is a wonderful tool. We love it. We think you will, too!
You can check out Surge XT in action (using Reaper on MacOS) in the video below. As this is an audio product review, the standard disclaimers apply, be sure to bring your earplugs if you value your sanity. Other open source or free synthesizers covered on GameFromScratch include ODIN2 and VITAL if Surge doesn’t tick the boxes for you, check those alternatives out. If you are looking for a free DAW to host Surge you can find several free audio tools on our sister site DevGa.me’s Free Audio Tools list.