Standalone VST Host/Player
Platform: PC, Linux
I won't dare to assume that every reader out there happens to have a full DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) installed and ready to go to host all the VST's I list here. So for those of you who may just want to play a VST synth, drum kit, or guitar stack, I present you with MiniHost, created by prolific music software developer Tobias Fleischer (TobyBear).
This is as simple and minimal as they come, and that can be a great thing for the newbie we just described, as well as those of us daring enough to bring our computers along to gigs, and just need to turn an instrument on. If you want to download VST's but don't know how to play them, use this.
Note the nifty little mouse-clickable keyboard on the bottom; it can quickly audition sounds for you if you don't have a MIDI controller handy. I find myself using that feature more than I would have ever guessed. Oh, and there's a short nag screen that pops up once every 24-hours asking for a small donation to the developer. This is totally reasonable and a small annoyance, but I just wanted to let you know :-)
Please support free software developers:
send them thanks, custom patches
or settings, and songs recorded
using their software
(money helps too)