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HALion 5


Steinberg’s HALion VST sampler is a powerfully inspirational virtual sampling and sound design instrument that forms the heart of modern sound creation and production environments.

In our exclusive video interview, film composer Paul Haslinger explains his view on composing, his approach to sound design and the essential role that HALion plays in his work.

Watch video


Key features

  • State-of-the-art sampler and sound creation system tailored to the demands of professionals
  • Up to 192 kHz, 32 stereo outputs and 6-channel surround support
  • Powerful multi-timbral audio engine with disk-streaming sample playback, tone-wheel organ simulator and high-end virtual analog and granular synthesis
  • Outstanding library including over 2,500 synthesized sounds and breathtakingly authentic acoustic instruments
  • AudioWarp provides cutting-edge time-stretching and pitchshifting functionality
  • Full VST Expression 2 support for smart articulation editing in Cubase
  • FlexPhraser module drives beats, arpeggios and complex tonal phrases
  • MegaTrig for easy programming of playing styles and articulations
  • Wide range of high-end audio effects, including REVerence convolution reverb, VST Amp simulation and many more
  • Flexible user interface with multi-monitor support allows you to customize and save your own windows and screen sets
  • Includes the full version of HALion Sonic 2


New in HALion 5


The latest version of Steinberg’s HALion VST sampler adds new features that extend the boundaries of virtual sampling and sound design software. New instruments and sound sources, an added granular synthesis engine, new effects, a slicing mode and much more complement the myriad capabilities that have made HALion an indispensable tool for pro musicians, producers and sound designers worldwide. An extensive sound library, a vast array of audio creation tools and ultra-expressive sound modules combine with a next-generation interface to create a powerfully inspirational instrument that forms the heart of modern sound creation or production environments.


New sound sources

With two new sound engines HALion 5 adds even more options to your creative tool set. The new granular synthesis engine turns your samples into fantastic new textures, adding a whole new world to your sonic palette. The breathtakingly authentic new tone-wheel organ simulation offers the sound of classic drawbar organs with nine organ and percussion drawbars. HALion 5 invites you to embark on new sonic experiments by combining multiple sound sources to create your own sou

New slicing mode

Slicing and reconfiguring audio is an essential producing tool these days. The new HALion 5 slicing mode allows you to remold any sample to fit with a beat or track. Not only is it flexible and easy to use, the HALion 5 slicing mode also uses first-rate algorithms that keep your sliced material sounding great; use the included filters to spice up each slice individually. Two automatic detection modes are complemented by manual marker editing for powerful one-stop solution for reworking samples.

FlexPhraser revised

FlexPhraser now sports a new user mode that opens up new sonic horizons. Create your own patterns and phrases with the new user phrase editor, which lets you set velocity and pitch for sounds in up to 32 steps, while harnessing the additional power of two controller lanes driving even more parameters like filters and effects. Existing MIDI files can even be imported to quantize the arpeggiator to an existing groove, and phrases exported to Cubase as MIDI files for further editing!


New MIDI modules

Two new MIDI modules give you exciting new tools to build and play arrangements and drum tracks directly within HALion 5. The MIDI Player lets you load up to 8 MIDI files into dedicated slots that can then be edited and triggered remotely using the Trigger Pad feature. The Trigger Pad can also be used to drive the new Drum Player, which adds a step sequencer designed specifically to drive drum beats and rhythm tracks directly within HALion 5.

New instruments

HALion 5 features 8 new stunning instruments with over 1000 new sounds and presets that will fuel your creativity in new ways: stunning new synths rub shoulders with premier acoustic instruments, while the inspiring new drum rhythms will drive your creativity to new heights. HALion 5 also adds the intriguing sonic possibilities of granular synthesis, as well as an astonishingly authentic new tone-wheel organ. And to keep things simple, each instrument has a Macro page for direct access.

New effects

HALion 5 introduces 9 sumptuous new effects: Crank out great guitar tone with VST Amp, get funky with the new Wah Wah and generate freaky new soundscapes with Auto Filter. Heat up your digital recordings with the Tape Saturator, and lose yourself for hours discovering the awesome possibilities of the Ring Modulator. And if that’s not enough, the Step Flanger, Vintage Ensemble, Envelope Shaper and Octaver will give you all the creative options you’ll ever need for FX.

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What you get



Expand your universe


More than a sampler

HALion combines the best in sampling technology with the latest in virtual analog synthesis to offer a fully integrated sound design environment for professionals. HALion 5 further extends the sound-creation possibilities through the addition of a granular synthesis engine and an ultra-authentic tone wheel oscillator. Plus, audio tools such as the new Slicing module and the Audio Warp pitch-shifting and time-stretching toolkit that is based on algorithms by zplane make audio material supremely malleable — reform and remold audio to suit your project and not the other way round. Build complex sample libraries on the fly, create cutting-edge synths and invent your own sound — all in one intuitive instrument.


Leave your acoustic fingerprint

From surgically precise EQing to ultra-expressive sound design tools: with a total of 59 first-rate effect processors, HALion 5 offers a plethora of creative options. Highlights include the REVerence convolution reverb, the flexible StudioEQ, and a captivatingly authentic rotary cabinet emulation. HALion 5 adds Steinberg’s renowned virtual amplifier VST Amp and the innovative Auto Filter tool for even more possibilities.

Mix it inside

HALion 5 incorporates a state-of-the-art mixing engine with powerful routing options for complete control over your signal flow. There are virtually no restrictions — create an unlimited number of buses per Program and Layer and freely route the signals as desired. Each bus holds controls for level, pan, mute and solo as well as eight insert slots. What’s more, HALion 5 features a total of 32 stereo output channels and 6-channel surround support.

Flexible user interface

HALion 5 incorporates the most efficient and flexible user interface ever witnessed in a virtual instrument, allowing you to undock, move and resize windows, create function tabs and save entire screen sets — ideal for multi-monitor setups and perfect for keeping you focused.



A creative tradition


Creativity from the get-go

HALion 5 supports you from the earliest stage of your production, including importing and mapping your sounds, letting you assign your sounds on-the-fly during the import stage and even extracting keyrange, velocity and root key information directly from the file name and transfering them to your program. The workflow-optimized HALion 5 mapping editor makes the mapping process easy and convenient. Fading between zones, easy ‘drag and drop’ and automatic gap filling are just a few features that are as useful as they are intuitive to use.


DIY Sound Programming: Yes, it’s that easy…

The second generation of MegaTrig in HALion 5 enables you to create advanced instrument articulations, highly expressive playing styles and sophisticated conditional triggering modules for innovative sounds without the arduous process of writing your own scripts. Explore the included range of presets or recombine them to create your own; MegaTrig can make all the difference between sounding like everyone else and inventing your own signature style.

Start experimenting

The HALion 5 Quick Controls give you instant access to all your most important settings. Quick Controls can be setup individually for every program, layer and FX setting to give you direct access at all times. QCs can also be automated in your host application to recreate your creative moment. And with unlimited Undo/Redo and the integrated Undo History you can try out all the amazing modulation opportunities and always have the option to go back to any sound.

A Slice of Rhythm: Reworking Audio

HALion 5 offers a new slicing toolkit for reworking samples into your project, including tools for slicing samples and loops on import, playing and moving individual slices on the beat grid and for manually editing and reshaping individual slices. Additional features include slice replacing, which allows you to replace slices with your own samples, ideal for reworking drum loops. Slices can also be exported as MIDI files, allowing the remapping of beats and phrases onto other instruments.



Experience perfect synergy


Complete Integration

HALion 5 effortlessly integrates into various VST applications, making excellent use of the advantages each tool has to offer. The seamless integration of HALion 5 into Cubase and WaveLab and the Advanced Integration support for Steinberg hardware make HALion 5 the premier VST sampler and sound creation system.


More VST than ever before

In its fifth incarnation, HALion reasserts its claim as today’s most powerful VST sampler by supporting Steinberg’s latest Virtual Studio Technology version, VST 3.5 for full articulation and controller editing inside Cubase! VST Expression 2 makes working with instrument articulations as easy as it should be. Instead of handling all those MIDI controllers for switching articulations, it allows seamlessly integrated editing as well as full control over multiple articulations within the Key and Score Editors of Steinberg’s award-winning advanced music production system Cubase.



Developed for professional aspirations


A proven sampling system

Nowhere is Steinberg’s ability to pioneer advances in audio technology more apparent than in its HALion product family. The flagship of its latest generation of sampling instruments, HALion 5 has been engineered to offer not only the advanced features and pristine audio quality but also the stability and reliability that pros expect. The advanced sampling engine and powerful multi-timbral sound creation toolset in HALion 5 is the result of decades of expertise in audio software engineering.

Quality content for sparkling results

The fifth incarnation of HALion features a 15-GB sound library of the most painstakingly constructed libraries, including the complete sound collection of the acclaimed HALion Sonic workstation. Created by sound experts at Steinberg and Yamaha, the extended HALion 5 library offers a smorgasbord of opportunities in the form of 2,500 factory instruments and presets; the HALion 5 library truly covers almost every conceivable genre.

Compatibility all the way

HALion 5 supports all the major library and sampler formats. True backward compatibility to HALion versions 3 and 4 means that all sound and effect parameters are preserved in this latest version. Running in both VST and AU plug-in hosts as well as cross-platform compatibility for 32- and 64-bit editions of Windows 8 and Mac OS X 10.8 make HALion 5 the perfect tool for audio designers and music producers using different machines and systems.

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Why HALion 5



HALion 5 is loaded with an arsenal of mind-blowing loops and instruments for the discerning producer and combines a powerful synth engine with a drum and instrument sampling engine and extraordinary sound design capabilities. There are over 2,500 programs and over 850 layers that allow producers to create fresh new hits in a breeze. The included sweetsounding audio effects in HALion 5 provide all that is needed to let beats and melodies sound punchier, louder and dirtier: highend reverbs, delays, modulation effects, dynamic processors and it just goes on and on! HALion 5 includes over 1,500 Yamaha FlexPhrases to inject even more energy into any project. The flexible internal routing management lets producers implement HALion 5 easily into their producing environment and makes HALion 5 an irreplaceable part of the production.


Composers and musicians

HALion 5 offers a complete range of world-class acoustic, electric and electronic instrument sounds along with a wealth of drums, effects and more — all in a powerful yet inexpensive instrument that appeals to composers and session musicians alike. For all those who focus on making music rather than fiddling with synth parameters, HALion 5 is simply a dream come true. The included studio-quality library features up to 20 articulations per instrument for natural-sounding productions and covers an enormous range of styles: all the way from finest detailed acoustic instruments to legendary synthesizers, club sounds and soundscapes, from ultra-realistic acoustic drum kits to the latest electronic beats.


Sound designers

HALion 5 offers sound designers everything they need to turn their sonic vision to reality. Developed according to the requirements of professional sound designers HALion 5 is an user-friendly and intuitive to handle sound creation system of its own, that allows sound designers to map sounds fast and easy and generate complex programs without the need of scripting. The flexible desktop architecture of HALion 5 can individually be adjusted to each step of the creative process and fits gently into any professional environment. The in-depth editing opportunities of HALion 5 give sound designers the chance to create their own sound and the combination of sample and synthetic layers mixed with the powerful FX stage opens up the door to the next level of sound design.


::: Next steps :::


Instruments and FX

HALion 5 includes stunning instruments and sumptuous effects. 

Read more and listen to demos

The HALion line-up

HALion, HALion Sonic or HALion Sonic SE — check out the HALion line-up.

Find out more

Grace Period Update

Activated HALion 4 since May 15, 2013? Then you qualify for a free Grace Period Update.

Read more


System Solutions

Steinberg's relentless innovation in professional audio software has recently been matched by truly inspiring hardware that together offers an unparalleled integration experience.

View our System Solutions Guide

VST PlugIn Zone

Are you in search of far-out filters, hi-res reverbs and other audio allies? The PlugIn Zone presents a selection of top-notch plug-ins developed by third-party companies using Steinberg's popular VST format.

Enter the VST PlugIn Zone