Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Free Guitars

Continuing with instruments such as you might use in a rock band.

The Guitar!

Acoustic Guitar 
There are some nice options for free acoustic guitar. Definitely check out the first three listings as this will give you a five very nice guitars.

Pettinhouse is the best place for free Kontakt guitars . He has two lovely acoustic guitars, the Classic Guitar and the Acoustic Guitar.

Flame Studios  (Giga & SF2) has a wide variety of guitars including a Seagull and a Washburn acoustic. If you prefer Kontakt here are the bigcat versions.

Natural Concert Guitar (SFZ) or the bigcat version (Kontakt)
Ultimate Guitar Kit 2  or here (SF2) from the guy who owns orange tree samples now
Quartertone Guitar (Kontakt)
Project 16 Sherwood Guitar (Kontakt) 
Spicy Guitar (VSTi)
Indiginus Free Guitar pack (Kontakt) includes the Double Tracked Acoustic Guitar.
Revitar 2 (VSTi) (Acoustic, Electric and Bass)
Richman-2 (VSTi)
MSLP Lil' Nylon (Kontakt)


Electric Guitar
The free electric guitar options are staggering. Pettinhouse is wonderful, Flamestudios has a very nice collection, KMG7 is an amazing instrument and the Hephaestus guitar is very nice indeed.

Pettinhouse (Kontakt) also has lovely electric guitars, the Direct Guitar 2, the Warm Jazz and the Humbucker.
 
Flame Studios (Giga & SF2) has a whopping eight electrics including Fender Jags and Telecasters and Gibson Les Pauls. I converted three over to Kontakt.

KMG7 (Kontakt) is a brilliant 2 gig 'backing metal guitar library'
Hephaestus Clean Guitar (Kontakt) is a wonderful instrument.
Emily Guitar (SFZ)  and bigcat version (Kontakt)
Jackson EMG (Kontakt)
Waves Factory Power Guitars (Kontakt)
Thrash DI Guitar (Kontakt)
DSK Electrik GuitarZ (VSTi)
DVS Guitar (VSTi)
NoiseCrux Peavey Predator electric guitar (SFZ)
Les Paul SG Custom (VSTi)
Suburban Guitarist (VSTi)

Oddities and Chords
Epic Guitar (Kontakt)
Bowed Guitar (Kontakt)
Tiple (Kontakt) lightly sampled guitar like instrument from Columbia.
MSLP Acoustic and Electric Guitar Chords (Kontakt)
Oderions Guitar Steel Chords (SFZ)
DIY Philharmonic Guitar (Kontakt) a wrapper for the Philharmonia guitar samples.

Guitar Amps
Ignite Amps
Guitar Rig Free
Amplitube
Fretted Synth   

Friday, May 30, 2014

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Free Pianos

I love pianos so here is a list of all the full piano freebies I could find.
Right now Piano in 162 and Estate Piano LE are the best.

Yamaha
Maestro Concert Grand CF3 (Giga)
Maestro Concert Grand (Kontakt)
Maestro Concert Grand (Kontakt)
Salamander Piano C5 (Kontakt, SFZ)
Summer Piano Disklavier Pro (Kontakt)
Amore Grand (Kontakt)
Headroom Piano C3 (Kontakt)
Piano One C7 (VSTi)
My Piano CX (Kontakt)

Steinway
Ivy Audio Piano in 162 (Kontakt) (Torrent Free, Donation for Download)
Ivy Audio Piano in 162 (Kontakt) (Sign-in required - Direct Download)
Hephaestus Steinway Grand 3 (Kontakt) Sign-in required
Iowa Piano (Kontakt, SFZ)
Steinway Grand and Bright (Kontakt, Halion, NNXT)
Anthony's Philharmonic Steinway (SFZ, SF2) 

Kawai
Estate Piano LE (SFZ) (Sign up for newsletter)
CV Piano (VSTi)

Baldwin
The City Piano (Kontakt, SFZ, Sampletank 2.5)


Bechstein
Sonic Cat Pop Piano MP192 (Kontakt)

Fazioli
Acoustic Grand (Kontakt) 
Fazioli Grand (Kontakt, Halion, NNXT)



Upright
Skerratt London Piano (sfz and VSTi) or Kontakt
Beskhu Upright (Kontakt)
Upright Piano (pre 1900) (SF2)
VS1 Upright (VSTi)
4Front Piano (VSTi)
Jazz Baby (VSTi)
Prova (VSTi)

Honky Tonk
Shoot the Piano (Kontakt)
Detuned Upright (Kontakt)

Intimate
The Whisper (Kontakt)
Intimate Piano (Kontakt)

MSLP Piano Grand Soft (Kontakt)

Prepare
A Prepared Piano (Kontakt)
Are You Prepared (Kontakt)

Plucked
Plucked Piano (Kontakt)
Beskhu Plucked (Kontakt)

Imperfect
Not Quite Right Piano (Kontakt)

Unknown
Vintage Piano (Kontakt)
Mildon Studios Acoustic (Kontakt, SFZ)
HS Classic Grand (Kontakt, Soundfont, Sampletank, refill)
Sample Modern Baby Grand (Kontakt)
MDA Piano (VSTi)
DSK AkoustiK KeyZ (VSTi)
Sonatina Grand Piano (Kontakt)
Splendid 72 & 136 (SFZ)
WST 25 Stein (SFZ)
General and Le Piano (VSTi)
Flygel (VSTi)

Toy
Beskhu Toy Piano (Kontakt)
MSLP Toy Piano (Kontakt)


P.S. Thanks to Gramofon for his master list, Bedroom Producers Blog, AKingsMercury and Rekkerd.org for listing many of these freebies.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Totally Free Instrument by Type

Totally Free Instruments Organized by Type

There is finally a decent totally free Digital Audio Workstation!  Tracktion 4 is totally free and fairly good, though a bit confusing. It isn't crippled in any way and you can import all your VST instruments into it. It calls them 'Filters' for some reason. To insert them drag the green wide arrow called 'New Filter' from the upper right corner down to the green area to the right of your track. This hurts my brain, but it works.

More good news Tracktion 5 DAW is now free as well. I haven't tried it, but the well respected

There are three instrument formats on the this list VSTi, SFZ and SF2.
VSTs or VSTis simply load into your DAW and don't need special software to play.
SFZ and SF2 files may require a player if your DAW doesn't have built in support.
For SFZ format use Sforzando 
For SF2 use DSK SF2

Multi Instrument Plugin
These VSTs offer many instruments that load into the basic player. Often they are demos, but they are fully functional and free.

Kontakt 5 Player (VST)
Or the Komplete Players (VST) including Guitar Rig and Reaktor Players
Orion Sound Module (VST) (you will be sent email link)
Independence Free (VST)
Sampletank 3 Custom Shop (VST)
Proteus VX (VST)
UVI Workstation (VST) Note this installs Interlok Copy Protection which would be the love child of Sony's Rootkit and Apple's I-tunes if they thought they could get away with it. I won't use it, but it may not bother you. AS Free Collection works with this.

Large Instrument Collections
bigcat collection (VSTi)
Necromare VSTs (Win 32bit VSTi)
DSF Soundfont Examples Collection (SF2)
Free Sounds for ARIA Engine Volume 1 (SFZ) Works with Sforzando
Musyng Kite Soundfont (SF2) 

Entire Orchestra
Virtual Playing Orchestra (SFZ)
VSCO 2 Community Orchestra (SFZ)
VSCO2 Community Orchestra (VSTi)
VSCO 1 Orchestra (VSTi)
Sonatina Symphonic Orchestra (SFZ)
Sonatina Symphonic Orchestra (VSTi)
Bellatrix Orchestra Final and SJ Orchestral GM (SF2) along with others
DSK Overture (VSTi)
DSK Virtuoso (VSTi)
Squidfont Orchestral (SF2) 

String Section
DSK Strings (VSTi)
Sustain Strings SFZ Lite (SFZ) (requires email)
Orchestral Strings One (VSTi)
D. Smolken's multi-sampled double bass  (SFZ)
Karoryfer x bigcat Cello (SFZ)
Meatbass (SFZ)
Cellofan (VSTi)
Solo Cello (SFZ)
Double Bass Pizz (SFZ)
Warm Strings (SFZ)
M-theory (VSTi)

Brass
DSK Brass (VSTi)
NoiseCrux Multisampled Brass Ensemble (SFZ)
Iowa Brass (VSTi) bottom of the page
Mihai Sorohan Muted Trumpet (SF2) 

Woodwinds
RECsoprano (VSTi)
Ixox Flute (SF2)

Orchestral Percussion
New Horizon Percussion (SFZ)

Organs / Church Bells
S30 (VSTi)
Combo Model F (VSTi)
Orgue de Salon (SF2) (a house organ)
AZR3 (VSTi)
Supertone (VSTi)
The Ghent Carillon (SF2)
Carillon (VSTi)

Harpsichords
The Blanchet 1720 (SF2)
The Small Italian (SF2)

Pianos
Ivy Audio Piano in 162 (SFZ) Steinway
Ivy Audio Piano in 162 Alternative Link (SFZ) - Must register
Estate Grand LE (SFZ) Kawai - Must register. 
Sampletank 3 Custom Shop (VST) includes a lovely Steinway
Piano One (VSTi) Yamaha C7
Salamander Piano (SFZ) Yamaha C5
bigcat pianos - Baldwin, Steinway, Upright (SFZ / VSTi)
CV Piano (VSTi) Kawia
VS1 Upright (VSTi)  Upright
4Front Piano (VSTi) Upright
DSK AkoustiK KeyZ (VSTi)
Jazz Baby (VSTi) Upright
New Horizon Steinway & Yamaha (SFZ)
Upright Piano (pre 1900) (SF2) Upright - Must register
Prova (VSTi) Upright
HS Classic Grand (SF2, Sampletank, Refill)
MDA Piano (VSTi) 

E-Pianos
MDA E-Piano (VSTi)
4Front E-Piano (VSTi)
4Front R-Piano (VSTi)
DSK RhodeZ (VSTi)
Mister Tramp 2 (VSTi)

Acoustic Guitars
Flame Studios  (SF2)
FS Ibanez Steel String Acoustic Guitar with Fender Reverb
FS Seagull Steel String Acoustic Guitar with Fender Reverb
FS Kay 5-String Banjo (SF2)
Shinyguitar (SFZ) Archtop Guitar
Ample Sound Lite (VSTi)
Natural Concert Guitar (SFZ)
Ultimate Guitar Kit 2  or here (SF2) from the guy who owns orange tree samples now
Spicy Guitar (VSTi)
Revitar 2 (VSTi) (Acoustic, Electric and Bass)
Oderions Guitar Steel Chords (SFZ)

Electric Guitars
Flame Studios (SF2)
FS Fender Jaguar Electric Both Pick-ups Guitar and Amp
FS Fender Telecaster Both Pickups and Amp
FS Gibson Les Paul Electric Both Pick-ups Guitar and Amp
FS Fender Jaguar Electric Guitar Both Pickups Direct In
FS Fender Telecaster Electric Guitar Bridge Pickup Direct In
FS Fender Telecaster Electric Guitar Neck Pickup Direct In
FS Gibson Les Paul Bridge Pick-Up Electric Guitar Direct In
FS Gibson Les Paul Neck Pick-Up Electric Guitar Direct In
Cute Emily (SFZ)
Cute Emily (VSTi)
DSK Electrik GuitarZ (VSTi)
DVS Guitar (VSTi)
NoiseCrux Peavey Predator electric guitar (SFZ)
Les Paul SG Custom (VSTi)
Suburban Guitarist (VSTi)

Bass Guitars
(note if bass guitar makes no sound, transpose midi 1 octave higher)
Pasta Bass (SFZ)
Flame Studios (SF2)
FS Washburn Acoustic Bass Guitar
FS Ibanez Electric Bass Guitar
FS Yamaha Electric Bass Guitar
Project16 Rick 4001 Bass (SFZ)
Project16 Rick 4001 Bass (VSTi)
GrowlyBass (SFZ)
SwagBass (SFZ)
FashionBass (SFZ)
Ergo Electric Upright Bass (SFZ)
Ample Bass P Lite II (VSTi)
Precission E-Bass (SFZ)
Free Bass (SFZ)
DSK BassZ (VSTi)
4 Front Bass (VSTi)
Tubed Bass (SFZ)

Guitar / Bass Amps
Ignite Amps
Guitar Rig Free
Amplitube
Fretted Synth  

Drum Kits
DrumMic'a (VSTi) Amazing drumset with midi patterns, but you have to register in German. This site walks you through it. It's a pain, but likely the best free instrument in existence.
SM Drums (SFZ & Others)
MT Power Drum Kit (VSTi) note requires free registration 
Salamander Drumkit (SFZ) Download the samples. Then you add the sfz files as instructed.
Free Jazz Funk Drum Sample Library (SFZ) Get the SFZ files here.
Open Source Drumkit (SFZ)
MF Natural Drumset (SFZ)
Easyrider and RuffRider (SFZ)
Pettinhouse Kits (SF)  

Electronic Drum Kits
Da Real 110 (SFZ)
DrumBoxx (VSTi)
EDX80 (VSTi)
GTG DPC 3 (VSTi)
ERS Drums (VSTi)
Impaktor (VSTi)
Pettinhouse Kits (SF)
DSK DrumZ MachineZ (VSTi)
DSK DrumZ 8bitZ (VSTi)
DSK Synth Drums (VSTi)
DSK Mini DrumZ 2 (VSTi) 

Saxophones
DVS Saxophone (VSTi)
DSK SaxophoneZ (VSTi)
Bolder Instruments Mini Sax (SFZ)

Harmonicas
Bolder Instruments Harmonica (SFZ)

World Instruments
DSK World StringZ (VSTi) (Celtic harp, Cumbus, Dobro, Kanun, Koto, Dulcimer,
Tar, Turkish Oud)
DSK Indian DreamZ (Sitar, Sarod, Veena, Tar, Tampura & Tabla)
DSK Asian DreamZ (VSTi) (Pipa, Pipa tremolo, Luan, Guzhen, Erhu,
Ban di, Percussion kit)
Diatonic Accordion (SF2)
FLukelele Ukelele (SFZ)
Varazuvi Indian Flute (VSTi)
Bolder Instruments Thumb Piano (SFZ)
MF Taiko  Drum (SFZ)
Kettle Drum (VSTi)

Struck Idiophones
Alan ViSTa (VSTi) plus gongs and cymbals
PatchArena Marimba (SFZ)
Bowed Vibraphone (SFZ)
Xoxos Phybos (VSTi)
dmiHammer (VSTi)

Music Boxes, Toys and Oddities
The Taijiguy Mellotron (SFZ)
Bolder Sounds DIY Music Box (SFZ)
Bolder Sounds Toy Piano (SFZ)
Baby Piano (VSTi)
MF Tin Whistle (SFZ)
MF Glass Organ (SFZ)
The Grandfather's Clock (SF2)
The Shepherd (VSTi)

Arpeggiator
BlueArp (VST)

Other Resources
Bedroom Producers Blog has a slew of free VSTs including Instruments, Effects and Utilities.
VST4Free is devoted to free VSTis and has many gems.

Welcome

Hi there. My name is bigcat and I'm addicted to free digital musical instruments. I started out making lists of them over on Steam after I bought Cakewalk's beginner's Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) Music Creator 6 touch. Since then I've made more lists and started creating my own free instruments.
This is a place to compile these different lists, point the way to other free lists and get suggestions from you about free instruments I've never heard of. I'll also rate free instruments and do mini-reviews and such, because I like to do that too.

There will be two basic types of lists, those that deal with instruments that require no monetary investment of any kind and those that use Kontakt.

Native Instruments sells Kontakt for $400 bucks, but I got it on sale for half price at $200. Still that is far from free. It is the standard in the modern digital instrument world much like Microsoft Windows is the standard OS. After your DAW, it is the single most important piece of software to own in the musical world. I'm not saying its right or wrong, but if you invest the $200 (wait for the sale) your palette of instruments will explode. Most of the instruments you find on these lists will be for Kontakt simply because their are more of them and the quality is generally better. Though again there will be lists that specifically avoid Kontakt and feature fully free instruments.

At some point I'll probably also point out some cheap alternatives that give you a ton of instruments in one package, what I paid for them (I'm dreadfully cheap) and what they sound like quality-wise.

Most of what I do and my interest lies in the realm of recreating acoustic instruments, but I'll also come up with a list of the more highly regarded free synths and probably take a look at things like sound effects as well.

I hope you have fun!