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Is AAX Better Than VST?

Plugins are the tools that every producer utilizes in the process of music production.

There exist different plugin that each work to a specific end.

In this post we examine which is better between AAX plugins or VST plugins.

so lets get into it,

AAX is a better plugin format than VST, because it is more efficient and better suited to handle large projects. Other than CPU efficiency, AAX has two different variations that allow for a great work flow and sonic clarity.

VST Plugin Format

VST stands for Virtual Studio Technology,

it was introduced in 1996 in the popular DAW called Cubase Version 3.02.

This plugin type is a well known interface for both instruments and effects.

VST 3 which is the 3rd version of virtual studio technology is the latest version and is widely implemented is most DAWs like Cubase, FL Studio and many others.

AAX Plugin format

AAX stands for Avid Audio Extension which a unified plugin format that has two variations namely AAX DSP and AAX native.

This plugin format was introduced as Avid created a 64 Bit Version of Pro Tools which meant that a plugin format with 64 bit processing was needed.

AAX allows you to share sessions between DSP-accelerated Pro Tools systems and native-based Pro Tools systems and continue utilizing the same plugins.

More about Plugin Formats.

There exist multiple plugin formats and all this is an effort by the plugin industry to deliver quality high-end plugins.

Digital Audio Workstations and hardware are also in consideration .

The most common plugin formats you’ll come across are:

Native PC Platforms

This essentially means all plugins supported by windows based music software.

This will primary include VST and can also include AAX for the windows version of pro tools.

Native OS X Platforms

This basically covers all plugin formats supported by MAC OS X based Music software.

which may include VST, AU (Audio Units) and AXX.

Does Pro Tools use VST or AAX?

Pro Tools uses AAX Plugin format.

Can you use VSTs in Pro Tools?

You cannot use VST in pro tools DIRECTLY, you need an AAX plugin that can load the VST you wish to use inside of Pro Tools.

Avid has blocked developers from developing VST wrapper plugins,

but they allow for AAX developers to create AAX plugins that can be used to load up VST Plugins.

Is Serum a VST?

Yes, Serum is a plugin that is available in the following formats : VST, AU, and AAX

Does FL Studio use AAX?

FL Studio supports: 

FL Studio for Windows – Supports 32 and 64 Bit VST 1/2, VST3 including Image-Line’s own enhanced proprietary FL Studio native format.

AAX is an Avid plugin format.


AAX compared to VST is much better because of the workflow that it allows,


AAX generally gives better results and a better sonic quality.

plus it is an efficient plugin format that is designed to handle even the largest of sessions accompanied by bigger files.

This is not to say VST is a bad plugin format, it is a good format and I’ve worked with it mostly but when compared to AAX for efficiency it falls a bit short.

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Is AAX Better Than VST?

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