Get a free Ableton pack this Christmas

Here’s another gift to go in your stocking this Christmas and pad your digital instrument collection out with a collection of vintage synths for Ableton free to Live 10 users.

Bring in the new year with new synthesizers to play with as Ableton are offering an early Christmas present free to all Live 10 users. Ableton have specially prepared a selection of single-sample vintage synth-instruments to make 2019 a great year with awesome new sounds to play and create with.

Singularities features 40 Instrument Racks compiled together by Ableton sound designer Huston Singletary for which he has “put a lot of love and experience into recreating the quirks and nuances of classic gear”. The pack’s vintage synth instruments uses the onboard Sampler and Simpler features prominently to allow expressive and realistic playback reminiscent of the original hardware.

You’ll find the usual synth suspects in the gear list for this Pack, those that defined that brilliant 80s sound – Juno 106, Minimoog, Oberheim OB-X and Korg Polysix among them. There are 40 Simpler-based Instrument Racks built from the above, with bass, pads, leads and keys, each with eight Macros that give diverse options for sound-shaping.

But the approach to capturing these classics went beyond the norm. All 40 Simpler/Sampler instruments were made using a single sample – the same approach as classic samplers, which offered a signature sound based on single-sample playback. The effect is a somewhat rawer and more digital sound that cuts through the mix quite nicely.

As well as the synth instruments the Singularities pack features a range of MIDI clips to help you kick off your ideas as well as two retro-sounding Drum Kits. If you’re a Live 10 user then there’s no reason to pass up this Christmas treat when it’s totally free!

Pack contents

  • 40 Simpler-based Instrument Rack presets – bass, pad, lead and keys
  • 2 Drum Kits
  • 150 Drum and Music MIDI clips
  • 3 Demo songs

Singularities works with Lite, Intro, Standard and Suite editions of Live 10.

Head here to download your free Singularities pack here.

Get $1,367 of samples for under $40 this Christmas

Christmas is a time for generosity and few are being as generous as Samples From Mars who are giving away their MASSIVE library of high quality samples for over 95% off.

Samples From Mars have been selling high quality sample packs for 5 years offering everything from incredible drum machines, classic and iconic synthesizers and more. Combined all of their excellent sample packs are worth $1,367 but as a holiday treat the lovely people from Samples From Mars are offering their entire website’s worth of offerings for just $39.

Drum machines are their speciality, and they are extensively multi-sampled one shots, based on the parameters on each drum machine. Where available, they sample every pitch, decay, etc (in Ableton there are Macros that select different drum machine pitches, which makes a huge difference in sounding like the original drum machine).

Beyond their incredible collection of drum sounds Samples From Mars offer an extensive library of multi-sampled one shots from some of the coolest synthesizers in history from stuff that hasn’t been sampled like vintage Russian synths to the classics we all know and love.

Speaking on sampling synths, they say: “On the keyboard itself, we spend days synthesizing the coolest and most useable patches – juicy analog bass, warm pads, cutting leads, wild FX – the list goes on, and greatly varies with each synth. Then, we multi-sample every note, often sampling additional filter and modulation settings. Usually we record synths pretty cleanly, but sometimes we’ll hit various tubes and saturators and even tape!”

You can tell they’re passionate about what they do and it’s represented in their high quality samples. There’s even more to enjoy beyond drums and synths as well, with Found Sounds offering ambient sound from reality like thunder, drill bursts, rain hitting different objects and more recorded and presented in a package that creates unique inspiration.

On top of all of that there are acoustic drums, Rhodes, Clavinet, bass, guitar, vocals, obscure records, dogs barking and more all for just $39 – so why haven’t you bought them already!?

Mix tracks right from SoundCloud through Serato DJ

SoundCloud has one of the biggest collections of music ever with everything from underground DJ mixes to the latest hit tracks and now you can mix them into your set easily with Serato DJ.

As a DJ you want a comprehensive selection of tracks to mix and match and groove around with. SoundCloud has a bigger music library than all of the major streaming services thanks to it’s user uploaded catalogue featuring custom tracks from DJs, producers, bands, singers and everything in-between. Now SoundCloud’s 125+ million tracks are available through Serato DJ.

You can now instantly search, discover and mix any music from SoundCloud’s collection of independent music and it’s newly licensed major label tunes on Serato DJ Pro 2.1 or DJ Lite 1.1 decks with a SoundCloud Go+ subscription. In the Serato DJ apps you simply need to log in to your SoundCloud account from the SoundCloud icon in the DJ library on the left hand side.

All of your playlists will automatically be synchronised into your library after you restart the Serato app so you can simply drag tracks into your set. If you have a set coming up this means you can easily create a playlist on SoundCloud with all the tracks you want to mix and next time you load up Serato it will be there waiting to be mixed.

Beyond that you can search and discover from SoundCloud’s massive collection of official releases, emerging creator content, and everything in between. It’s an amazing resource but also makes DJing so much more convenient as you have hundreds of millions of tracks on tap without taking up any space on your laptops.

If you have a Pro Unlimited account, you can add a SoundCloud Go+ content subscription for half the price. By combining Pro Unlimited and Go+, you get both SoundCloud’s industry-leading creator tools to grow your career, plus the ability to mix and stream millions of underground and premium tracks through Serato. With Pro Unlimited and Go+ you get the best-value bundle for you to do what you do on the 1s and 2s.

Find out more and sign up to SoundCloud Pro Unlimited and/or Go+ here.

Everyone can DJ on iOS with djay’s new free app

8 years of djay on iOS making DJing easy and fun for anyone on their smartphones, they are re-releasing the app so it’s free for everyone.

For 8 years Algoriddim has been bringing DJing to the masses through their phones with their paid app djay. Now they’re re-inventing the experience and opening it up to more people by making it a free experience and enhancing it with a bunch of new features.

Gone are the old djay apps on iOS offering a $10 iPhone app and a $20 app for DJing on the iPad that provides a feature packed DJ experience that’s accessible to amateurs but powerful enough for professionals alike. djay are now returning to their original model from when they launched in 2006 of offering their powerful app as a free download that users can choose to pay a subscription for extra features.

In their statement creators Algoriddim said: “We decided to make djay a free download again. Moreover, in the same way that djay made mixing music accessible to the masses, we wanted to do the same for creating music. Moving to in-app subscription gives us an easy way to add more packs, more sounds, more videos, in a way that ensures everyone has access to the same downloads, without further cost barrier.”

The free version includes:

  • The two-deck Classic Mode, with vinyl control, a mixer, scrolling waveforms, looping, EQ, filter, and five FX.
  • Automix AI driven mixing: Choose a starting track and trigger AI based DJ transitions.
  • iTunes integration, with filtering by Artist, Album, Genre.
  • Ableton Link tempo syncing.
  • Plug-n-play with support for five official djay controllers: Reloop Mixon 4, Beatpad and Beatpad 2, Mixtour, and Pioneer DDJ-WeGO4.
  • Most importantly, access to the full Spotify library and playlists with a Spotify Premium membership.

With a Pro subscription you also get all of these bonus features:

  • Custom playlists, including smart playlist filtering.
  • 2 decks Pro view: view decks and library side by side.
  • 4 decks Pro view: mix up to four music tracks at once with full control and library.
  • Single deck preparation view.
  • VJ video mixing view with support for external monitors.
  • Advanced MIDI learn system to map each control on users’ hardware individually.
  • MIDI over Bluetooth.
  • Support for 50 controllers from Pioneer DJ, Reloop, Numark, Denon DJ, and others out-of-the-box.
  • Multi channel audio interface, for up to four decks of music with a club mixer.
  • Advanced Automix.
  • NEW Looper music performance mode lets you play up to eight quantized audio and video loops out of a possible 48 loaded
  • PLUS, over 1 GB of high quality samples, loops, FX and visuals, with much more added in the future:
    • 30+ Audio FX from Sugar Bytes, including:
      • Space Flanger
      • Stutter Delay
      • Filter Machine
      • Wobble
      • Time Travel
    • 1240+ Audio loops from Loopmasters, including:
      • Ambient house
      • Deep house
      • Analog techno
      • Electro swing
      • Latin house
      • Neuro DnB
      • Retro 80s
      • Trance
    • 300+ Audio samples from Future Loops, including:
      • Chill
      • DJ vocal drops
      • Trap
      • Percussion pack
      • Hip hop vol. 1-4
    • 20+ Video loops from DocOptic, including:
      • Geometric Ride
      • Liquid Moon
      • Party Time
      • Space Clouds
      • Wave Twists

Bitwig Studio 2.5 beta is here and full of new features

Bitwig Studio’s music making software gets even better with a whole host of new features available in their 2.5 update now available in beta in time for the new year.

Early last year Bitwig launched the second iteration of their popular DAW which recreated the software with new features, new instruments, better integrations and much more. Now almost 2 years later they’re launching the beta of Bitwig Studio 2.5 for testing out all of the great new features that their new iteration introduces.

Just in time for Christmas and the New Year the beta lets users  on the Upgrade Plan download the update and get to grips with it so that Bitwig are prepared for a full launch in 2019. New features introduced or enhanced in 2.5 were inspired from a mixture of community response and requests as well as optimisation and streamlining of how the DAW works in general.

The most notable new feature is clip blocks which creates a whole new way of arranging tracks or laying out a performance. A lot of love lies in Bitwig’s Audio Editing capabilities and that feature has been streamlined even further in 2.5 and users can slide audio thanks to the update. There are loads of great new features that Bitwig Studio have introduced in 2.5.

WELCOME TO CLIP BLOCKS

Teaching your clips new tricks.

Whether building an arrangement or crafting a performance, clip launching is essential to any modern DAW. And with the added concept of clip blocks, new arrangement possibilities are now available.
By leaving a blank slot between a group of clips, you have now defined separate clip blocks that Bitwig Studio’s Next Action feature can jump between. Treat these blocks as sections, and now your clips can automatically navigate your arrangement. Possibilities abound.

AUDIO EDITING, DEEPLY SIMPLE

Now with Audio Slide.

From the start, an audio clip in Bitwig Studio could contain any number of audio events. This uniquely powerful technique is a user favourite, but they have (unsurprisingly) asked for more. So with version 2.5, audio editing has been streamlined while preserving the advanced options.

One new feature here is the ability to slide audio. This keeps the clip in place while you freely move the audio within it. Dropped in a file that doesn’t start on the downbeat? Slide it immediately without leaving the Arranger. Or select multiple clips and slide them all by the same amount. Spend less time on edits and more on music.

NOTES THAT CAN MORPH

Selector your adventure.

Bitwig Studio’s various note FXs allow you to expand your music by arpeggiating, harmonizing, delaying, echoing, and more. And with the new Note FX Selector device, you can sweep through endless layers with one simple knob. Whether you are creating small variations or taking a performance to exotic new places, this device puts the whole musical journey within arm’s reach.

FIRMING UP THE FOUNDATIONS

Better finding, zippier interface.

A few framework elements have been improved as well. Browser search results are now ordered by relevance, and plug-ins are scanned faster. Some import and snapping methods have been improved, only one copy of each plug-in is shown by default. And more than 50 functions have been added as user-defined key commands. Because the less you are thinking about your workflow, the more it is doing for you.

NEW SOUND CONTENT: ANALOG WAVES

The building blocks of synthesis – classic sources ready to go.

Coinciding with Bitwig Studio 2.5 is “Analog Waves.” Designed in collaboration with Boxed Ear, this package comprises 60 Sampler presets, each made with hundreds of full-frequency oscillator waveforms. From rumbling lows to guttural mids and sparkling highs, a full-bandwidth sound is the best way to bring analog sources into a digital environment.

If you prefer polished presets, then the ready-to-go sounds will have you covered. But this pack is also ideal for your own sound design. By wrapping all 760-some samples into a single multisample, one click will load all the pure and layered oscillators so your sound sculpting can begin. (Don’t worry; our recently revamped Sampler is made for any number of samples and layers.)

Analog oscillators are a thing to behold — and Bitwig Studio natively works with them. But when hardware is out of reach, this rich set of samples proves to be an excellent sidekick.

Get 2 instruments on Roland Cloud for life these holidays

These holidays sign up to Roland’s digital instrument suite subscription and get two digital instruments for life whether you stay a Roland Cloud user or not.

Roland Cloud offers up an incredible range of virtual instruments from digital recreations of some of their most famous and greatest synths to virtual drum machines emulating their storied history of influential drum machines. The Japanese instrument makers offer this suite of digital music potential as a subscription that you can opt-in and out of at anytime but this holiday season they’re offering a very special promotion.

When you purchase a one-year subscription, whether you renew at the end of the year or decide to cancel you’ll be able to choose two instruments available in their catalogue to keep for your own, forever. You can’t sign up for less than a year to take advantage of the deal however that gives you a year of working with Roland’s extensive catalogue of instruments, as well as any new ones that launch, so you’ve had time to decide which are the most valuable to you.

You have until December 31st, 2018 to sign up for an annual subscription and get the Play 2-4 Life Holiday Promotion. Here’s all that you get with a Roland Cloud Subscription:

  • Unlimited access to all instruments including the 808, 909, Juno 106, Jupiter-8, and many more
  • Frequent new instrument releases like the JX-3P and others
  • Continual product updates and fixes

And as part of Team Roland Cloud you receive:

  • Membership to a worldwide community of music makers and producers
  • Opportunities to share your tracks on Roland Cloud’s social platforms
  • Events, contests, and special offers
  • Informative, inspiring content like user stories, artist spotlights, articles, playlists and more

If you’re looking to pad out your library of digital production tools Roland Cloud is a great way to liven your toolkit out with a range of high quality instruments. With this great holiday deal, why miss out?

Propellorhead’s new Reason device is made for songwriting inspiration

Working on Reason and stuck for inspiration? Propellorhead’s Quad Note Generator is a new rack extension that helps you lay the groundwork for your music.

Quad Note Generator is the latest software for the makers of popular DAW Reason. It creates an endless stream of musical ideas to fuel inspiration and inform the progression of a piece. Propellorhead’s new rack extension for Reason takes your music and switches it up and turns it around with new melodies or new rhythms.

Create melodies, rhythms and harmonies you wouldn’t have thought of with Quad Note Generator. This new Player Device from Propellorhead Software will help create bass lines, leads lines or other musical phrases to fit your music, based on scale and your preferences for rhythm and variation. It can generate melodies on its own or respond to your keyboard playing.

You can use Quad Note Generator in several ways. Use it as your starting point to help you set off in a direction with your song. Or use it to spice up something you are already working on. If you like, you can record the Quad Note Generator performance into Reason’s main sequencer for final editing. With the freeze function, you can create phrases that are part repetitive and part improvisational in nature.

Features

  • Four separate note generators
  • Creates musical melodies and patterns
  • Control variations for note and rhythm
  • Use freeze function to capture perfect motifs
  • Record performances to Reason’s main sequencer
  • Comes with a variety of inspiring patches to get you started

You can try out the Quad Note Generator on a trial or you can purchase it for £62/$69/€69.

Liven up your DJ sets with visuals from Roland’s new free app

Roland’s Beat Sync Maker app promises beat-synced visual effects that will bring a whole new dimension to your EDM and DJ sets.

Roland’s new app for iOS creates unique and custom visuals for music videos or live sets that can transform your music with professional and impressive visual effects. The app automatically detects beats in performances to “add all sorts of cool video effects that stay in perfect time with the music”.

Using Beat Sync Maker is simple—just choose a movie on your device and then select one of five visual effect types while it’s playing back. That’s all you need to do! Adjust the depth of an effect with the onscreen slider to change up the look, and alternate among the different effect types to create your own variations.

Beat Sync Maker’s 2-Video Mix function allows you to cut in movie clips as well, making your performance videos even more interesting and unique. There are 18 pre-installed clips to choose from, and you can also import personal movie clips stored in your device’s camera roll.

If you’ve ever been disappointed with the sound quality when recording music videos with your smartphone, Roland’s GO:MIXER PRO and GO:MIXER provide an easy solution. These compact and affordable audio mixers feature multiple inputs and dedicated level controls, allowing you to blend keyboards, drum machines, guitar/bass, and vocals together as you and your musical partners perform. An ultra-clean stereo mix is sent to your phone while you shoot, providing a top-quality live soundtrack for your video performance.

In addition to providing great sound for your smartphone videos, GO:MIXER PRO and GO:MIXER also unlock the full video export functionality of Beat Sync Maker without needing to make an in-app purchase.

Roland’s Beat Sync Maker is available on devices running iOS 11 or later for free on the Apple App Store: itunes.apple.com/gb/app/beat-sync-maker/id1434787464?mt=8

Akai return to mobile with iMPC’s powerful, beatmaking sequel

Akai Professional have been making digital music creation quality at an affordable price for years and the follow up to their brilliant beat-making app takes that power on the road.

There are innumerable music making apps on mobile devices these days, putting the power of music creation in the hands of anyone with a smartphone and allowing them to take that potential anywhere. When it comes to music making apps though, there is definitely a cream of the crop and Akai’s iMPC has sat nicely in that category for 6 years.

Now a sequel to the beloved and powerful mobile beatmaker is only a month away and we are very excited for all of the new opportunities arriving in Akai’s iMPC 2. As with the original iMPC the app brings their renowned drum sampling and beatmaking MPC (Music Production Controller) hardware into a smartphone that is surprisingly capable of replicating it’s dedicated forefathers on a small touchscreen.

The iMPC 2 brings audio track recording, powerful production tools and the iconic MPC workflow to iOS devices better than ever. The app has evolved into a fully fledged song creation tool with it’s second generation thanks to the addition of vocal tracks bringing a whole new layer to your mixes, the integration of Audio Units, a sleek new design for the best performance, and much more.

An entirely new sound kit is included with iMPC 2 , designed just for the iPhone app. The sounds included cover some of the most iconic sounding beats throughout history through to cutting edge new percussive noises. Their expansive sound kit all comes for the Akai Professional vault with samples from punchy 808’s to melodic hits and stabs, designed for the best user experience possible.

Not just new sounds and features are being added in iMPC 2 though, there is an entirely new platform for creators to revel in and hone their skills. iMPC University is a new tutorial section, unlocking a new producer secret every day. Akai promise “an expansive dive into the world of beatmaking and song editing through these courses” that they promise will be fun and valuable whether your a pro or just getting started.

Here’s the full line-up of wicked features coming in iMPC 2:

Audio Tracks: 

  • Record from built in mic, external mics, audio interfaces, instruments, etc.
  • Record from Inter App Audio Apps
  • Warp Tracks and Clips to match tempo
  • Access several quick editing features on Audio Clips (Pitch shift, Time Stretch, Amplify, Crop, Split, Duplicate)
  • Drag to arrange Audio Clips, snap them to an adjustable grid setting
  • Advanced waveform editing

AudioUnit integration:

  • Audio Unit tweak mode with full keyboard support (including 2 dozen scale modes from Chromatic to Blues to Aeolian)
  • 100% New Sound Set, with 4 additional free Sound Packs
  • Sample sounds from Spotify
  • 64 Track Mixer with EQ and 4 FX sends (Reverb, Delay, Chorus/Flange, and one Inter App Audio Effect)
  • Chop-shop provides intuitive multi-touch editing, trimming, auditioning, splicing, splicing and processing samples
  • Tracks View shows an overview of all the tracks in your song
  • 16 Levels mode with attack, velocity, length, and tuning settings for quickly creating variations of sounds
  • Live Sequence queuing for real-time performance and playback
  • Time correct: 1/8 note – 1/32T with variable swing
  • MPC Note Repeat featuring 1/8 note – 1/32T timing with latch
  • IAA and Ableton Link support
  • Share beats and songs seamlessly to YouTube
  • 4 Mute Groups and custom-designed envelope filters for all pads
  • AudioCopy and AudioPaste support
  • Improved integration and support for iMPC Pro Packs and other Sound Packs from the AudioCopy Content Store
  • Expert MIDI support including expanded options, multiple maps, and more
  • Extensive undo/redo capabilities
  • New Song Arrangement workflow and integrated Song Mode makes song creation easier than ever
  • Drag entire Folders and Sound Packs directly to pads to load many sounds at once

Akai Professional’s iMPC Pro 2 for iPhone is expected to release on the Apple App Store on the 10th December. You can pre-order the app now for $4.99.

The best sites for free samples and loops to download

Loops and samples are a producers best friend, providing endless opportunities to use and rework unique sounds, melodies and rhythms into a new surrounding. But quality samples are hard to find without denting your wallet, so we’ve collected the best places to go where they are free to download.

SampleRadar

SampleRadar loops multi loops samples free download royalty free music production

SampleRadar is a giant hub of free loops, hits, and multis offered by music news and tech publication MusicRadar. It’s updated all the time and full of every type of sample you could ever imagine. Whether you’re looking drum hits, acoustic guitar samples, reggae loops, ambient sounds, or really just anything – SampleRadar has the packs for you.

There are over 66,000 samples available for completely free download with SampleRadar. All of the samples are royalty free and come from the discs included with Computer Music and Future Music magazine. We highly recommend you have a scroll through all the packs that they have to offer and expand your library with a whole host of tasty new sounds and samples.

Converse Rubber Tracks Sample Library

Converse Rubber Tracks sample library samples sampling loops hits music production producer

Converse are best know for their shoes but they also have a wicked audio library full of high quality samples that they’re giving away for free. The Rubber Tracks Sample Library is a bunch of professional samples recorded at Converse’s Rubber Track studios.

There are percussion packs, moog synth sounds, clips, blips, trips and much more. All of the samples in the surprisingly extensive library are free download and entirely royalty free so you can use them however you like with no strings attached.

Producer Loops

Producer loops music production samples loops hits sampling

Producer Loops isn’t inherently a free sample site but it does currently offer 86 amazing sample packs at no cost. And their free offerings may not be as regularly updated as the rest of the website but you can be sure that when a new pack is added it will be a quality treat.

The highlighted pack is currently in theme with next week’s festivities and offers a spooky Halloween selection of loops based on recent tracks from producers like Martin Garrix and Steve Aoki. Every pack is up to a premium standard and offers a wide selection of tasty sounds that are completely free to use

Samplephonics

Samplephonics free samples loops music production sampling

As with Producer Loops, Samplephonics offers a premium library of paid for sample packs. But with premium charges comes premium sample packs, so you know that their free offerings are of real worth and the best quality.

You will need to sign up with a free account to take advantage of Samplephonic’s free library of samples, loops, and packs – even synth presets. With packs ranging from amazing brass recordings, future bass effects, professional vocals and much more, Samplephonics has a lot to offer the producer on a budget.

HipHop Makers

Hip Hop makers samples production music producers

Despite the site’s name HipHop Makers have loads of high quality packs for anyone, regardless of style. That said, if you’re a Hip-Hop producer you may have just found your new favourite site for sample packs.

The bread and butter of this site are the numerous drum kits, drum loops, hits and basically the hundreds of percussive possibilities offered in the multiple packs on HipHop Makers. It doesn’t stop there though with Kanye West style loops for inspiration, heavy brass for some fat melodic beats, piano loops for an old school sound, and much more.


Any sites that you use and love for free samples? Share the love and post them in the comments below.