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50 Best Acoustic Drum Kit Samples
(including lots of great FREE drum samples!)
We all know the big players in the market – BFD, SSD, SD, AD, … But we tried to find some more exotic, less-known drum libraries, samples, sample packs, kits and samplers / drum sampling applications.
Ofcourse, some of you will recognize lot of them, but I’m sure there are names nobody heard of. There’s (as of last update) more than 70 (!) drum sample providers here (hundreds of kits/libraries/bundles) and lots of freebies.
This page is being constantly updated, so be sure to check back again
Last update: January 2015.
Note: Listed in no particular order.
Drumdrops have a great reputation for their live drum tracks. Now they have started releasing Sample Packs. The first kit available is a 1963 Premier Outfits 54 Kit Recorded at Miloco’s The Pool available as a Kontakt 5 kit, or two other packs a multi-velocity pack and a simpler 3 velocity pack. Both of these can be imported into any sampler or drum machine. Update: there are new kits in their pool: Rogers Big R Dub, Gretsch 1960s Round Badge, 1965 Ludwig Super Classic, Yamaha Hybrid, Mapex Heavy Rock, …
More than 10 kits, and even a free one. Up to 16 dynamic samples per key. All snare drums, toms, hi-hats and ride cymbals have separate left-handed and right-handed samples. Compatible with Kontakt.
Fully sampled drum kits or individual sample packs of kicks, snares, toms, crash cymbals, rides, hihats, and percussion – all meticulously recorded, mixed, and edited for use in your music.
The library contains nearly 4,000 samples (4 gigabytes) across three custom drum kits and a set of percussion. There is also a FREE version of this kit. Compatible with Kontakt.
High-end samples of Truth Drums.
Kits like Truth Custom Black and Gold, Masters One [Cymbals] etc. Wav files. Compatible with Drumagog and Kontakt.
Professional sound sample library that captures acoustical sound of various drum and cymbal instruments. Samples are stored in plain WAV format, with MIDI drum instrument files available in NKI (Native Instruments Kontakt 3.5/4; Kontakt Player in demo mode only) and SFZ (Cakewalk Session Drummer 2 and 3) formats.
Use as VST, AU, RTAS Plug-in or as stand-alone application. DRUMASONIC ensures an authentic playing experience. Compatible with Kontakt.
Currently only Metal pack. Drumagog and Trigger formats.
3 high-end drum kits (Gretsch New Classic, Sonor 3007, Ludwig Legacy) with 5 great snares. More than 2500 samples in 44.1 kHz 24 bit stereo with full sustain and dynamics (2.3 GB on drive, ncw lossless format). Requires Kontakt 4.2.3 or above. £19.99
Lots of kit pieces samples; like Peace, Wolf, Pork, OCDP snares; Pearl Vision and Spaun toms. And a bundle for $69.99. WAV, .NKI, .GOG, and .TCI formats.
Contains 17 Kicks, 19 Toms and 18 snares recorded with top of the line microphones, preamps and converters. Presets for trigger and drumagog. 50€
Compatible with Kontakt. Features Pearl Masters Premium Maple kit, Yamaha Maple Custom Absolute kit and Sonor SQ2 Drum System.
Compatible with Kontakt.
Huge Variety of drum libraries. Like Andy Johns Classic Drums, Joe Barresi Evil Drums, Rock Legends QuickPack, … Mostly for BFD, but also for Session Drummer.
6000 sounds, Sound Manager application (for easy sound selection and one-click conversion to 16-bit format).
Kit pieces and bundles. Ayotte and DW Custom Maple kits. Formats: .DRT, .NKI, .TCI, GOG, .WAV. $85 for the complete bundle.
With 145GB of drum samples, this probably THE largest drum sample library. It comes shipped pre-installed on its own hard drive. Works with Kontakt.
Several kits and one bundle pack. Comes with its own sample player, the UVI Workstation 2 (requires v2.0.4 or later).
130 drum kit pieces and more than 50 prebuilt drum kits. Multiple mic positions and multi-track mixing of the kit. $200. Works in Kontakt 5.
Includes close mic and overhead samples, with full control over individual levels, compression and ambience. Compatible with Kontakt.
Kontakt, WAV and TCI files. Each Drum Sample type has Multi Velocities and various Hits. Product programming (for Kontakt), scripting and sample editing.
Snares and kicks and one “Everything Bundle” for $20. Comes with Wav, TCI, and NKI’s.
Nine carefully recorded drum kits played by five outstanding drummers with three different microphone settings, all masterfully engineered and put together by a legendary punk rock producer. For Reason.
Great pricing, pretty good sound. Several kits, including Tea Towel Drum, Brush Drum, Black Toms, … V-Drum ready. Compatible with Kontakt 3.5. Very affordable.
Update: they have a new library called Classic Rock Drums.
48GB drumset library has both ready-to-play GM kits and totally unprocessed multi-mic kits that you mix as if the tracks had been recorded with a live drummer.
The Orbinator/Larson ‘rock’ sample library contains over 100 drum hits (total) of varying dynamics on a four-piece drum kit.
Deeply Sampled Custom Made SJC Drum Kit with 2 different snare drums.
16GB od samples, Vdrum optimized kits included, Dedicated decay & stick-position control, Auto alternate left/right hands.
Drummix is a collection of acoustic drum plugins recorded at a professional recording studio with pristine equipment. The plugins comes in both a stereo and multiple output versions. The user has the possibilities to mix each recorded microphone like a real drum kit.
More than 1200 drum kits classified to 16 different music-styles. Compatible with Kontakt.
Reason Drum Kits 2 gives you masterfully multisampled, perfectly playable, totally recallable multi-output drum kits for Reason’s Combinator.
For Stylux RMX.
Featuring sample packs like Vintage Cymbales, Moneyshot Hi Hats, Remastered Tom Drum Samples …
Edrums VSTi. 8 stereo outputs and an extensive sound library (1.3GB) that can be expanded via expansion Paks.
Complete kit, or just snare, or kick, …
AU / VST Instrument. It has already pre-processed the sounds with compressors and EQs. $50. Free demo available.
Drum set-up with 19 available pieces and over 10 different kits (including DW, Ludwig and Sonor). Recorded in Ocean Way Studios, The Record Plant and Abbey Road Studios. Free demo available.
Over 1.3 Gig of data in over 16,000 single-shot wav files. Plus over 25 playable kits in Kontakt, and Battery formats and over 15 GURU kits too. $24.95.
Including loops and samples (up to 7 velocity layers & 4 round-robins). Channeling the essence, sound, and the swing of great jazz drummers like Max Roach, Elvin Jones, … $179.99
These sample sets are designed for producer’s looking for a very heavy yet natural sound. These samples are all custom made and slightly EQ’d to create perfectly balanced and well rounded drum tones … Bundle: 60$
Includes both stick and brush samples on a vintage 4-piece ’60s Gretsch kit — a popular choice among the best players in jazz. 10 velocities left and right snare hits on a limited-edition, 75th anniversary Noble & Cooley snare. For Reason Refill (NN-XT sampler), Logic ESX24, Kontakt, Structure (Pro Tools) and Garageband Mac (not iPad) $17.95
Bodies and hi-hats have been recorded one by one with three separate microphones, while snare got a nice four-mike treatment. Multiple round robin and velocity levels. $16.
WAV and TCI format. NKI format will be available soon. As well as several new drumkits.
Over 1400 samples of snare drums and 24 NI Kontakt patches. €24. They also have tom, cymbals and kick packs.
Update: That Sound
That Sound is offering two free demo packs featuring sample from its forthcoming commercial drum sample libraries.
+6GB of drum samples. 6x round robin and 6 velocities. Multioutput, remapping function and velocity curve control. Natural bleeding. Requires Kontakt.
4.8GB of drum samples. You can change mics, adjust bleeds, velocity curves, … Requires Kontakt.
1.5GB, 4 Snares, 5 Sets of Toms, 4 Kicks. Includes raw .wav samples. Compatible with Kontakt, Drumagog 5 and Trigger.
Multi-layered kit with up to 30 velocities. GM map. Compatible with Kontakt and Session Drummer.
Vintage Funk, Heavy Metal and Rock and Vintage Pop / Rock Drum Samples. All 3 kits completely free! Wav files. Compatible with Ableton Live.
G&S Custom Drum Kit by Salvador Peláez
Probably one of the best freebies out there currently. Available in various formats.
Jazz Funk Kit by Orange Tree Samples
Together with G&S, this is my favorite free sample kit! Skilled jazz drummers can make a single drum sound very expressive, bringing out its character. SFZ format.
A free 265MB drum kit. Compatible with Shortcircuit, Groove Agent One, Drummagog, Battery 3 and Kontakt 4.
It doesn’t have many velocity layers, but instead many samples per velocity, in an attempt to get a more authentic sound when programming. SFZ format.
Free 65MB drumset soundfont. And here are some SFZ mappings for it.
Available in various formats.
Pretty basic, but free. Compatible with Kontakt.
Less than 5 MB, format SFZ, SF2, POISE drum sampler.
Captured at 44.1kHz/24bit using only a pair of Shure SM57s and an Apogee Duet, Basement Drums captures the authentic sound of an average drum kit with round robin layering and multiple velocities. For times when other drum sounds are too “clean”, “produced” or “even” Basement Drums could be your secret weapon.
Huge library with sfz and other mappings.
The VOXX Sound Laboratory has released some free Acoustic Drum Samples under the Creative Commons license (Sampling Plus 1.0).
A total of 777 samples, 16bit/44kHz mono .wav format (132 MB). Great samples, but sadly there are no patches.
The DrumTAsteFree is a Rick Marotta Signature Hipgig drum set with paiste cymbals.
Several acoustic drum kit multisamples available in16bit/44.1khz AIFF, ReFill, and EXS24 formats.
Requires a full working version of Kontakt 4 (Because it uses scripts from the Kontakt 4 Library) Although you can demo the kit in Native Instruments free Kontakt player, available from their website.
A great acoustic kit that is very flexible. Sonor Force 3001 sampled and painstakingly placed into EXS24. There are at least 4 velocity levels for each sound.
The Culture Collection features 158 drum samples spanning three different acoustic drum sets. Recorded at Urthwurk Labs in Orlando, FL.
A plugin in beta version. Has 3 presets: Rock, Rock Olympic and 70′s.
This is a free edition of the DrumCore player and it comes with 2 free drum kits.
The TinySnare is a 12′ wooden snare drums, We recorded it with a lot of different hits, separated left and right hands. There is even two mcrophones,, one up and one down.
615 Cymbal Samples by Erkan and Epic Drum Samples by TheWinterSnow
Samples: 24bit/48kHz, HALion & lm4mkII Programs. Pearl Masters Studio drumkit.
All samples are Hard hits that will punch thru any mix and all samples are a combination of two mics- one dynamic and one condenser.
For Ableton Live Drum Rack.
Even more FREE samples:
Dozens of personal or freeware drum kits and vsts.