Are there any ⁢common issues that producers face when setting up external instruments in FL Studio?

Setting ​up External Instruments ‍in ​FL Studio

FL Studio (formerly​ known ⁢as FruityLoops) is a digital audio workstation⁤ developed by‌ Belgian company Image-Line. It has climbed the⁤ ranks as one of the ⁣most used DAWs in ⁢the music industry due to its highly flexible and intuitive interface, and it’s become a go-to​ for many⁣ producers, engineers ‌and artists alike. This article will take you through the steps ⁣needed ‍to ⁣set up external‍ instruments in FL⁢ Studio.

Why Use⁣ External Instruments?

As robust and⁤ comprehensive as FL Studio’s internal library may be, it cannot possibly ‌cover all sounds and instruments that are available in the music⁤ world. That’s where external instruments come into play. ​External instruments‍ can be anything from ⁣physical hardware such as keyboards or percussion, to virtual software like VST plugins. Having the ability to‍ use these outside sources ‍broadens the scope of sounds available to you, ensuring ⁤you can ‌realize your creative vision ​without limitations.‍

How to Set Up External Instruments‌ in FL Studio

Physical Instruments

Connecting a physical‍ external ⁢instrument to FL Studio requires an audio‍ interface with an available input. To ‍get your physical instruments connected, follow these steps:

  1. Ensure your⁤ instrument is connected to your computer⁣ via‍ the audio interface.
  2. Launch⁣ FL ⁤Studio and⁢ go to the ⁣”Options” menu, then click‌ on “Audio settings”.
  3. Under ​Device, select your‌ audio interface from the list.
  4. Click on​ the mixer track where you expect ​your instrument’s sound to come in.
  5. In the Mixer’s ⁤effect slot, select an ‍instance ‌of⁤ “FL Studio ASIO”.
  6. Select the relevant input from ‍your audio interface connected to your instrument.

You should now be able to play your instrument and hear the sound within FL Studio.

Software Instruments (VST Plugins)

To ​integrate an external VST​ plugin ⁣with FL Studio, ⁢you’ll need to follow these ‌steps:

  1. Firstly, ensure⁤ the VST plugin is⁢ correctly ​installed on your computer and note the⁣ folder location where it’s ‍installed.
  2. In FL Studio, go to “Options” and then click on “File settings”.
  3. Under ⁤”VST plugins extra search folder”, click on the folder icon and navigate to where your VST plugin is installed to link ⁣it.
  4. Go to the “Add” menu, ⁤select “More⁤ plugins” to open the Plugin Manager, and‍ find the plugin ⁣you’ve installed. Ensure it’s ticked⁤ to be available in your project.

Your VST plugin will‍ now be⁤ in​ your list‌ of generators ‌in the channel rack or from the ​’add plugin’⁤ option ⁣in the mixer.


While it might seem daunting at first, ⁤setting‍ up external instruments in ‍FL Studio is a‍ relatively simple four-to-six-step process, depending on whether you’re integrating a physical or virtual ‌one into⁣ your project. By broadening your sonic palette, you​ keep your ⁤productions sounding fresh and unique. So, don’t be afraid to experiment with new sounds and tools as you improve your production ‍skills!