What is Auto Tune – How it works, versions and how to download

Although you are not Rosalía or C Tangana, it is an option almost to the everyone’s reach. It has fans and detractors too. Some hate it, others claim that it helps to innovate and create great music. Be that as it may, it is one of the most fashionable words or “technologies” in current music and it is worth clarifying what it is and what it is for.

What is autotune and what is it used for?

Although we have become common the word “autotune” and we speak interchangeably of it as the effect, it is a specific audio processor. It is actually a registered trademark. Auto Tune is a program by Antares Audio Technologies whose main purpose is to achieve all kinds of sounds and effects and is used in countless songs and albums to correct inaccuracies or possible recording errors but it is also used today to adorn all kinds of themes in musical genres such as trap or reggaetonwhere it is usual to hear these changes.

It is a paid program with a free trial, software that has become essential in the recording industry and has been used by all kinds of groups, from Radiohead to Maluma, Bad Bunny or Bad Gyal, who upload it to their songs. discreet effects that allow a subtle arrangement or striking effects that do not hide their use and that are within the reach of any sound technician.

A change in the music

Autotune came into use in the 1990s. It was the artist Cher who used it for the first time for her song Believe de Ella and the repercussion of the song made autotune, on many occasions, have been called “the Cher effect”. But the truth is that today it is used by hundreds of artists of all kinds both to correct vocal inaccuracies and simply to give a different “effect” to a song.

How did it come about? He emerged in the nineties. It was created by engineer Andy Hildebrand in 1996, a music lover, with the intention of creating a tool that would allow frequencies to be manipulated and adjusted to the musical scale. He released it in the nineties and Cher used it for the first time but there were many artists from the first decade of the 2000s who enjoyed the program.

It has defenders and detractors. Autotune is not without controversy: there are many detractors (so much so that it was banned at Benidorm Fest in 2022) who claim that it is used to hide the little talent of the artists who use it. Others, on the other hand, defend the possibility of evolving and going a little further, innovating with music, creating new styles and themes.

Characteristics and what functions it has

What tools and functions does the program have? What can we get? Which are the virtues of using Auto-tune for our musical pieces or what are the characteristics that the mythical program allows us to retouch themes?

Hay many features why Auto-tune stands out…

It manages to fix the voices, it is the tool to tune in a professional way.

As they say on their website, “many times imitated but never equaled.” It allows you to achieve the sound of modern music that we all recognize.

In addition to tuning, it includes extensions to create professional audio tracks.

Full compatibility. It is compatible with all the main digital audio workstations so we can combine it with many tools.

  • free updates

free updates with new versions of the included extensions.

Allows free access to tutorials, technical assistance, advice from industry professionals and all kinds of help and tools to get the most out of it.

We can get all kinds of voice effects that we will add to the tracks.

In addition, as we explain below, depending on the version you choose, you will have some specifications or other specific ones, specific functions for you.

How to download Auto-tune and versions

Although you may think that it is something that only reggaeton artists have access to, it is not. We can buy it or download it from the Antares Tech website, those responsible for its distribution. However, we will have to to pay thus.

There’s a lot different versions of the program depending on the needs of each one, of what we want to use it for. There is not only one but there are different programs depending on what we want to use, experience or non-professional:

  • Auto-tune Pro (professional reference)
  • Auto-Tune Hybrid (for AVid DSP systems)
  • Auto-tune Arist (optimized for live performance)
  • Auto-tune Slice (advanced vocal sampler)
  • Autotune Vocodist (Iconic Vocoder Models)
  • Auto-tune EFX+ (Tuning with Creative Effects)
  • Auto-tune ACESS (Basic auto-tune functionality)
  • Auto-Key (Pitch and Scale Detection)
  • Auto-Key Mobile (for detection on mobile phones)

It will depend on what you need to download one or the other. For example, the difference between if you want a piece of equipment for live performances or if we just want to have all kinds of creative effects. everyone has a price but it will depend on the one you choose that it is of one amount or another what you will have to pay annually. Of course, we have the option of accessing a free trial of Auto-tune in all its versions.


You can download or buy Auto-tune unlimited which is “a premium subscription package which offers the lowest cost of entry access to the entire AVOX collection, all current versions of Auto-Tune and Auto-Key, free software updates and continued access to select new plugins.” Priced at $14.58/month or $174.99/month annually if you choose the annual option. Or, we can pay monthly without permanence for 24.99 euros per month. With a free demo trial of fourteen days without cost or without permanence.

what alternatives are there

Although the original program is Auto-Tune from Atares TechIt’s not the only one. There are many other programs that are more affordable or even free that allow us to modify the sound if we are not looking for something professional, if we simply want to change a song that we have made for fun or for a school project.

Voloco It is one of the free alternatives and for mobile phones so it is available to anyone, it is a vocal recording studio on the mobile phone whose sole purpose is to create songs with more than forty free vocal effects and rhythms. Voloco is one of the most widespread and has over fifty million downloads to record tracks, voiceovers, a demo. It has a library of free rhythms and all kinds of effects such as equalization, reverb, voice extraction… Plus, it’s totally free.

Voloco: Vocal Studio
Voloco: Vocal Studio


Another of the most popular for mobile phones is autorep that promises us effects like “Nicki Minaj, Eminem, Tupac…” and that assures that “if you can talk, with AutoRap you can rap it”. It is a free application with payment options that offers a “rapifier” technology to create original works from the smartphone without being an expert.

AutoRap by Smule
AutoRap by Smule