6 of the best freeware drum machines

Free beats, whatever your genre, from machine to human…

1AudioSpillage MiniSpillage

AudioSpillage MiniSpillage

A returning drum favourite and must inclusion is MiniSpillage, a synth/drum plug-in. It’s still Mac only, we’re afraid, but an essential download for that platform. It’s a cut-down version of AudioSpillage’s DrumSpillage with three drum pads for kick, hat and hollow drum. It comes with several kits and synth features – LFO, filter, modulation and distortion – to stretch those kit sounds far and wide. It’s been around for aeons, but several updates keep this as one of the best Mac drum/synth freebies.

Mac (AU), 64-bit. More info here.

2Beat Factory Drums

Beat Factory Drums

Some of our free drum plug-ins do dance music, some rock – and Beat Factory Drums is designed to fill in the gaps, since it’s aimed primarily for hip-hop, dubstep and more. It features 10 kits, limited but essential sonic tweaks and hands-on MPC pads. It sounds great and is very well worth the 50MB download, which gives you the kick sounds and a plug-in that runs on any system, old or new.

Mac/PC, 32/64-bit. More info here.

3Drum Pro

Drum Pro

Make no mistake, Drum Pro is unashamedly a shell drum machine to add paid-for kits later, but it does come with 20 kits sampled from nine drum machines (from Roland, Boss, Novation and more) so you get a very decent start, without paying a thing. You get MPC-style pads and basic mixing and while it won’t quite cover all your drumming needs as developers Studio Linked claims from the off – but will with their paid-for packs – it still delivers a great variety of beats, for free.

Mac/PC, 32/64-bit. More info here.

4MeldaProduction MDrummer Small

MeldaProduction MDrummer Small

Melda doesn’t seem to be shouting about MDrummer Small as much as it once did, but you can still download it from the download/archive part of the company’s website. It’s well worth it, featuring hundreds of drum sets, components, multisamples, rhythms and loops and some of the features from the larger, paid-for MDrummer. So it might be worth downloading fast before it (possibly) disappears.

Mac/PC, 32/64-bit. More info here.

5Manda Audio’s MT Power Drum Kit 2

MT Power Drum Kit 2

It was all getting a little bit too electronic around here, so how about a piece of freeware to rock your world? This will still shake your cones like any TR drum machine, though, because MT Power Drum Kit 2 is all about power sounds, albeit from a pop, rock or metal perspective. You get plenty of kit sounds and groove, fill and rhythm MIDI files to get you up and running. It’s a great real and acoustic option if your world is to machine led.

Mac/PC, 32/64-bit. More info here.

6Synsonic BD-909

Synsonic BD-909

You didn’t think we could possibly do a freeware drum-machine round-up without including at least one TR emulation, did you? This is (obviously) a 909 emulator, but only the actual kick drum from that machine. Okay, that’s not a lot, you might think, but the 909 kick has backed tens of thousands of dance tracks and there are plenty of controls to shape it into just any incarnation of that sound you can imagine. There are 16 presets, too, if you think you need them.

Mac/PC, 32/64-bit. More info here.

For more buyer’s guides, check here. Looking for more freeware? Head this way.