How to Install VST Plugins in Cakewalk by Bandlab

If you’re new to Cakewalk by Bandlab, you may be wondering how to install those new VST plugins you just downloaded. Here’s what you need to do:

Step 1: Make Sure Your VST Files Are In the Correct Folder

By default, Cakewalk scans two file paths for plugins:

  • C:\Program Files\Cakewalk\VSTplugins
  • C:\Program Files\Common Files\VST3

If possible, try putting your plugin files into one of these folders.

Step 2: Add More VST Scan Paths if Necessary

Your computer might have other dedicated folders for VSTs. Some installers also create their own file path, which Cakewalk won’t scan right away.

In which case, you can tell Cakewalk to scan additional folders for VST plugins. Here’s what you do:

  1. Go to Edit > Preferences to open the Preferences menu (You can also use the shortcut P).
  2. Then go to File > VST Settings, and you’ll see the current VST Scan Paths at the top.
  3. Click Add, then find the folder where your VSTs are located. Click OK.
  4. Last, click Apply to save your changes.
Preferences menu in Cakewalk by Bandlab showing VST settings.

Additional Scan Options

By default, Cakewalk automatically scans for VST plugins in the background. That said, this feature could slow your session down and cause unwanted problems.

To change this setting, go to Edit > Preferences > File > VST Settings. You’ll see a section titled “Scan Options”.

Click the drop-down menu and select one of these options:

  • Automatic Background Scan — Periodically scans for plugins in the background.
  • Scan On Startup — Scans for plugins only when you first open Cakewalk.
  • Manual Scan — Stops Cakewalk from searching for plugins automatically. Only scans when you choose.

Looking for More VST Plugins? Try These Premium Resources

If you want some ideas for virtual instruments and effects, try looking at the products from these companies: