There are a lot of sites that offer free samples, but often we wonder whether they are really genuine, if their source is reliable, and especially if the sounds are really royalty free.
No one denies that their download is free, but you will never be 100% convinced that using these sounds in commercial works is not going to cause you problems later.
It would be wise to head to commercial samples, and especially to know what you get in return for that money. But here is a problem, there were all sorts of dubious “producers” selling packages that looks from afar as plagiarism. Usually hip hop and EDM are affected, I have met “developers” that shamelessly are selling selections of MIDI’s taken from free packs, or refurbished trap kits having same source of low quality 808 samples to whom intentionally they forgot the author.
But as we all know, passion and art often take place on an empty stomach. So we just went to the trusted sites that offers free selections of their commercial packs, as well as exclusive freebies. The main criterion is that samples given by them to be royalty free, and actually guarantee that. And because I am suspicious by nature, next to each site you will see my degree of trust.
Big Fish Audio is an old site, a sample supplier that resisted to all hostilities, especially the invasion of new sample makers in recent years. Big Fish Audio’s portfolio covers a wide range of styles and formats, I think their offer is one of the most diverse.
There is a free section on their website, containing 5 sampler packs (royalty free loops and samples) in the zone of urban, country, electro pop, rock/pop-rock and cinematic.
Due to seniority and the diverse range of styles, I give Big Fish Audio a full degree of trust and invite you to create an account and download all the freebies.
Lucid Samples is a huge sample supplier, and offers a variety of free sample packs, mainly selections (sampler packs), but also some interesting releases created specifically for its freebies section. The samples can be used to work on different musical genres like techno, house, trance, hip hop, minimal, hardcore, hardstyle and many more. With various genres come with a lot of different kind of production e.g. audio samples, sound effects, drum loops, synths, MIDI samples, multi-samples if you prefer ready-made solutions.
All sounds are royalty free, instead Lucid Samples rely on the feedback they ultimately will receive on websites, and from producers and DJ’s. Lucid Samples is trustworthy, feel free to download their packs and create, without having to worry about hidden costs.
Producer Loops is self titled as the world’s largest distributor of sample packs. With 268 labels in the store, come many responsibilities, such as ensuring all sounds are royalty free. That’s why I am not fully convinced by the authenticity of the work of some developers, but still I give a 99% trust level. But the big names are present, so a double guarantee is offered, which is more than enough for suspicious guys like me.
The freebies section is huge, having at least one sample pack for every genre, but especially for producers of EDM. Prime Loops is there, Function Loops too, Ueberschall and many many more. You can easily set up a high quality library of sounds with the cost of creating an account at Producer Loops. Enjoy!
Samplephonics is amazing by their sincerity. They are giving away free loops and samples, sampler instruments, synth patches and presets, sample libraries and more. All 100% royalty free. Besides demo packs with selections of sounds taken from full & commercial releases, Samplephonics come up with original and unusual libraries, see Decimated Rhythms, Bowed Cumbus, Sax on the Beach, Shakuhachi, or the Leeds Town Hall Organ.
Nor is the question whether the audio material is royalty free, the main problem would be what to download first. I highly recommend you to create an account there and subscribe to their newsletter, they come up often with new freebies and selections of commercial packs, as well as big discounts.
Wave Alchemy. I’m not reluctant to say that I have sympathy for everything that Wave Alchemy means, both as a concept and offer. All the packs and libraries are carefully designed and chosen, their premium products addressing especially the professionals who make no compromise on quality. Therefore, their offer might seem limited, precisely because they preferred to deviate from mainstream and follow their own style.
In general, in their store you will find tons of drums, sound effects, virtual instruments and multi-samples. You can download an amazing selection of exclusive free Wave Alchemy sample packs, as well as (royalty) free taster packs for all Wave Alchemy products, by simply clicking on the “Free sounds” button on their product pages.
There would be many other online stores that offer selections of free samples, rest assured that I will soon return with a second part. If I missed something important, or you have a tip to share, leave a comment below.