10 best places to get free samples for your tracks

No studio is complete without samples – everything from single drum hits & stabs to atmospheric background samples or full loops that can become the backbone of a track. We all need them, and in 2016 people are literally vying to give them away. Here are the 10 best places to get them for free

99 sounds

99 sounds – http://99sounds.org – Offers a diverse range of sample packs mostly focused on lush atmospheric , synthetic and drum sounds. Also has some multisampled synths as kontakt patches. It has only been running a couple of years and already has a good range of content and more is being added frequently

Sampleradar

Musicradar/sampleradar – http://www.musicradar.com/news/tech/free-music-samples-download-loops-hits-and-multis-627820 – Musicradar hosts a crazily large selection of sample packs, covering almost any genre or topic imaginable. Most of them have appeared as coverdisk samples for Computer Music (a great magazine, if you’ve never read it). Generally they are all of good quality and it is pretty easy to find what you’re looking for as they are all listed on a single page.

internet archive

The internet archive – https://archive.org/index.php – I’m often amazed how few people have heard of the internet archive. Just from an audio perspective it has tons of archived records, radio shows, concerts and advertising. If you want a but of vintage sound on your track, you can’t go far wrong. Do check the licences though if you intend to commercially release a track, although everything there is free to download, not everything is free to use. Apart from the audio on there it hosts a ton of free video, text, software, ROMs and other resources. In fact I made the video for Beep Beep Baby entirely out of video clips from the internet archive.

OLPC

One laptop per child – http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Free_sound_samples – OLPC is a great foundation that is attempting to give all children around the world access to computers as well as the tools to use them. Their free sample collection contains a great selection of multisamples  for a variety of different orchestral, band and ethnic instruments as well as  workstation loops, sample experiments and other oddities

Freesound

Freesound – http://freesound.org/browse/ – Freesounds is a site that allows anyone to upload sounds under a creative commons licence and has been accumulating a huge collection of samples over time. Most of the sounds are organised into small themed packs but it also has a variety of search tools to find them. As with any community content site, some of the samples are better quality than others but there are some real gems on there if your willing to search around

BPB

BPB – http://bedroomproducersblog.com/free-samples/ – Bedroom producer blog has its own exclusive sample sets (mainly chiptuney) and also has a section that regularly posts new free sample packs from all around the internet. Its good to stick around as well as it has really useful articles on many aspects of production, including where to get loads of other tasty freebies.

Rekkerd

Rekkerd – http://rekkerd.org/loops/ – Although it hasn’t been particularly active recently, the Rekkerd sample library has been growing for over 10 years. There is a core sample set as well as various guest contributed sets. It focuses mainly on synth and drum sounds. The site is also a good source of music software news, synth presets and reviews.

Rubber tracks

Converse rubber tracks – https://www.conversesamplelibrary.com – I know a company known for its footwear might not be your first thought for free samples but the rubber tracks project might convince you otherwise. Containing a whole variety of jams and more traditional packs made by a selection of artists. If you want to experiment with oldschool crate-digger style sampling there is a lot of top notch material here.

Sampleswap

Sampleswap – http://sampleswap.org/about/ – Sample swap is a website where anyone can upload samples and music. It has a huge selection of samples sorted by genre. You do have to download the samples one at a time but if you donate to them you can download all of them at once. It also has a massive collection of free to download (and often free to use) music, great if you want some fodder to remix, mashup etc.

Commercial demos – Many sample stores offer free samples as a way to entice you in so they’re worth checking out as well especially

https://www.lucidsamples.com

https://primeloops.com/free-samples/

http://www.vocaldownloads.com/freesamples.cfm

http://www.delamar.de/tag/free-samples/

Also – Its become really popular recently for producers to release their own sample packs as a way to promote, search around soundcloud or facebook and you can find quite a few decent ones

If you need a free sampler (or even a whole studio set up) to use these samples be sure to check out The ‘no dough/sound pro’ music studio

PLUR – 😀

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