Apricot, a free subtractive “CLAP” Synthesizer plugin for mac, win, and Linux

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Apricot is a free subtractive virtual analog Synthesizer plugin with two oscillators + sample player for macOS, Windows, and Linux.

Recently, Bitwig and U-he have teamed up to develop an open-source plugin format that promises to be better than Steinberg’s VST3. The release candidate was released in 2022. Since then, more and more plugins have been adapting the format.

For example, you can explore the format with U-he plugins or AudioThing’s latest plugin Things Bubbles. There is also a cross-platform synth that is currently only available for DAWs with CLAP support.



For many, this news is probably not really new as the virtual instrument has been on the freeware market for some time. I waited, however, until it was also available for macOS and Linux.

Apricot is a free easy-to-use, virtual analog-style Synthesizer plugin with a rich feature set. 2 oscillators, each with 6 different waveforms are onboard plus a sample layer with a sample import option. Both main oscillators come with phase offset and panorama modulation as well as JP8000-style unison. You can also work with a sub-oscillator aka third oscillator.

Then, the signals flow through a multimode resonant filter with lowpass, bandpass, and highpass modes, with either 12dB/oct or 24dB/oct. Plus, it has key track and a drive with a warm boost.

Apricot also has five effects to refine your sounds: 5-algorithm reverb, ping-pong delay, stereo phaser, parameter EQ, and a 4-algorithm Access Virus modeled distortion unit. The latter allows you to create a distinctive asymmetric distortion. Alongside these effects, you can also find three wave folding algorithms.

Modulation side, you get two modulation envelopes, and two LFOs, each with two dedicated modulation slots. Very classic and no surprise. These are programmed via a modulation matrix with up 16 slots, 70 mod destinations, and 10 mod sources.

Further, it hosts an arpeggiator and sequencer. Apricot ships with over 90 built-in patches available from the patch browser.

A very classic virtual analog Synthesizer with no big surprises. However, the possibility of working with samples makes it more versatile than other VAs. The one-page layout is also very hands-on for learning patch design. Hope it comes out as a VST3 and AU because it sounds pretty solid in the demos.

Apricot is available now for free or if you want to support the developer you can “name your own price”. It runs on macOS, Windows, and Linux in the new CLAP plugin format. There is no copy protection or DRM.

More information here: nakst.itch.io

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