If you don’t know who Zedd is then you probably won’t be here. So, I am going to assume you obviously know who Zedd is and you can skip reading his DAW, Gear, and Plugins.
If you want to know more then you can head to the Wikipedia page of Zedd – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zedd
Zedd, doesn’t have so many interviews where he is running through his production technique but I did my research on the stuff he uses to write this article.
What DAW Does Zedd Use?
Zedd uses Cubase as his primary DAW (Digital Audio Workstation). For recording vocals, he uses Avid Pro Tools as his software for making music.
On multiple occasions he tweeted about using Cubase. Below is one of the tweet.
@steve_duda dudaaaa. LFO tool is crashing with the new cubase 7 and I’m crying over here :'(— Zedd (@Zedd) March 7, 2013
What Plugins Does Zedd Use?
Apart from the plugins in his DAW, we are going to be looking at what are VST plugins does Zedd use for making music.
I will be listing down everything I found on his plugins and will also try to include where I found them.
Sylent1 has been the industry standard plugin ever since it’s launch and made famous by many of the producer across the globe.
Zedd, mentioned in an interview with Beatport that Sylenth1 is one of his go-to or favorite plugins to use.
reFX Nexus 2
reFX Nexus 2, is by far one of the best plugins on the planet. Starting from Nexus’ Grand Piano to it’s synth sounds it is just wonderful to use.
Almost in every song these days especially in EDM, Nexus has become one of the go to plugins/synth for music artists.
Spectrasonics – Omnisphere
Another popular and massive synth is the Spectrasonics’ Omnisphere. Which has a humangus library of sounds and instruments.
Not just instruments, it is a very advanced and versatile synth that you can use to literally create anything from. This synth is so cool, you will take so much longer to even just play around with and will still keep you interested.
KV331 Audio SynthMaster
Audio SynthMaster from KV331 is another powerful plugin with modulation, presets, and so much more.
Zedd talks about how this plugin inspires him to create music and the love he has for the plugin’s modulation, presets, and sound design capabilities.
Dada Life – Sausage Fattener
Sasuage Fattener is used by almost every modern producer. It’s a straight forward plugin that can help your sounds actually sound fatter.
It’s pretty inexpensive and has just 2-3 controls and makes a massive difference in your track. On their official website they have mentioned Zedd as an artist who uses this plugin.
Waves – H-Comp
Waves H-Comp is a really powerful hybrid compressor that you either download it individually or make a purchase of the bundle to get it.
There is a picture of Zedd using the H-Comp on his workspace.
FabFilter’s Timeless plugin is a very creative plugin that you can use to create really cool effects such as scratches, echo, chorus, flanger, pahser, and much more.
There is also a 30-day trial if you want to try this plugin.
Lexicon PCM Native Reverb is a gold standard when it comes to reverb plugins. The powerful algorithm that it’s built with can make your sounds very pleasurable to hear.
Below, you can see on Zedd’s screen where, He has the plugin opened.
Native Instruments – Komplete 8
Native Instrument’s Komplete 8 has a wide range of sounds and instruments. Even though his original tracks contain a huge amount of production stages there will be real instruments. This plugin bundle can come in handy when you want to use the virtual plugin.
Below is a tweet where Zedd replies and talks about Native Instruments’ Komplete.
@DavidDelude Konplete is pretty much unrelated to the trigger finger but komplete is really great— Zedd (@Zedd) April 23, 2012
You can check out the latest Komplete catalog here – https://www.native-instruments.com/en/catalog/komplete/
Xfer – LFO Tool
Xfer’s LFO tool helps you to creates side-chain, compressor simulation and basically get very creative on what do you want to with the signal you get from a sound.
One of the most powerful tool out there for manipulating sounds.
Below is a tweet where he talks about his DAW which is Cubase and The Xfer LFO Tool.
@steve_duda dudaaaa. LFO tool is crashing with the new cubase 7 and I'm crying over here :'(— Zedd (@Zedd) March 7, 2013
Kontakt 5 is a great player from Native Instruments. When you have Kontakt, it doesn’t just limit you to only Native Instruments’ plugins.
You will also have a lot of other thrid party library to use. Ranging from guitars, synths, instruments, and sound effects.
In the below video around 1:34, you can pause to see where it says “Kontakt”.
Waves Renaissance Axx
Renaissance Axx by Waves is a useful compressor plugin that can help you to get creative on your sounds without having to go through complicated settings on your bass, guitars, and synths.
In a photo by Interscope Records, you can see on his screen where he has loaded Waves Renaissance Axx. Click here for the photo.
FabFilter Pro-MB is a unique dynamic multi-band compressor. It’s very quick, versatile, and easy to use. You can use this plugin to compresses and get a punchy effect where needed.
FabFilter Pro-MB was seen using by Zedd, when he posted it on his Snapchat. You can check this plugin out here – https://www.fabfilter.com/products/pro-mb-multiband-compressor-plug-in
Tone2 Gladiator 2
Tone 2 Gladiator 2 is another cool synth like Sylenth1, which produces some of the rich, warm, and quality sounds.
With a very lightweight CPU and over 37 filter types and over 37 different sound effects. Also comes with 1200 sounds packed inside of it.
“I also love Tone2’s Gladiator, Lennar Digital’s Sylenth, and Native Instruments’ Damage, the latter for more cinematic sounds.”Zedd, Source: https://www.soundonsound.com/people/producing-edm
Native Instruments – Damage
Damage is a massive library of sounds. It’s almost like a cinematic sounds that you would usually hear in a movie or a high budget trailer.
They have about 30+ GB with 700+ loops, 500+ one-shots, 58 kits. You can perfectly use these craft some serious sound designs. Zedd, says that He uses these for the cinematic effects.
ClipShifter is a wave-sharper tool that performs like a clipping limiter. You can use this plugin on your mixing/mastering stage.
This plugin can be used to either give out a subtle effect or a more punchy effect that is on your face. This plugin is free and obviously comes with limited features.
You can get this plugin for free – https://lvcaudio.com/plugins/clipshifter/
A.O.M. Invisible Limiter
Invisible Limiter as the name suggest is a limiting plugin with powerful algorithims. Equipped with Transparent brickwall limiting, oversampling, and Unity Gain Monitoring.
It can be very handy in mastering of your tracks. The plugin is fairly inexpensive and you can check it out here – https://aom-factory.jp/products/invisible-limiter/
FabFilter Pro-L 2
FabFilter Pro-L is just another limiting plugin but a very powerful one. From the GUI to the functionality it’s one of my favorite plugin.
If you are pretty serious about mastering or mixing then head over to FabFilter and take look out what its capable of.
AbbeyRoad 60s Drummer
With 6 different drum sound articulation this plugin is sculpted very carefully and the authenticity is top notch.
It is made to resonate with the sound of the original AbbeyRoad 60s drums. Zedd is seen using this plugin on his song “All Because of You”. Click here for the picture.
Waves – Renaissance Equalizer Plugin
Renaissance Equalizer plugin from Waves is analog-style 6-band paragraphic EQ. This plugin is very popular among Grammy-winning producers as mentioned in their website.
MarioSo DeJesus, even has a introduction video explaining it. I have not tried this plugin but feel free to check this out.
Dada Life – Endless Smile
Endless Smile is another cool plugin from Dada Life that just makes your buildup more interesting. On their website it’s mentioned that
“Endless Smile is used by Steve Angello, Zedd, Tritonal, Axwell,…” – https://www.dadalife.com/plugin/
What Headphones Does Zedd Use?
These are the list of headphones that I found Zedd recently seen to be using.
- Pioneer HDJ-2000 White Headphones
- Beats By Dr. Dre Executive Headphones
- Audio-Technica ATH-M50
- AIAIAI TMA-2 Modular Headphones
What Microphone does Zedd Use?
Slate Digital – VMS ML-1
Slate Digital’s VMS ML-1 is a very powerful condenser microphone that sounds clean and picks up those perfect low-end, mid and high.
The price of it is significantly cheap for a microphone of such quality. If you are on a budget and still want to get that perfect studio-quality sound then this is the microphone to invest in.
You can read a lot of wonderful reviews about this mic and also hear a demo of it if you are interested. In this interview, you can read Zedd talking about the microphone.
What Studio Monitor Does Zedd Use?
– KRK VXT8 Active Studio Monitor
– Focal SM9 Active Studio Monitor
Below is a tweet where Zedd replies to Skrillex about the monitor.