Native Instruments expands Sounds.com to UK and Europe, adds free trial mode

NI’s sample subscription service also has a new pricing model.

Native Instruments has expanded its sample subscription platform, Sounds.com, to 21 new territories including the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Germany, Italy, Spain and “the majority” of Europe.

Sounds.com launched earlier this year, offering producers the opportunity to pay $9.99 a month for access to all the samples they can download up to 1GB, with a free tier providing a smaller number of downloads.

As part of Sounds.com’s expansion however, the platform has drastically changed its pricing strategy, with a free trial mode and three different pricing tiers replacing the previous model.

Each tier now gives users access to a different number of credits, each of which can be exchanged for individual samples. The free trial mode lasts for 14 days and offers 75 credits, while the paid tiers – an “essential tier” at $9.99, a pro tier at $19.99 and an “ultimate tier” at $29.99 – offer 150, 500 and 1000 credits per month respectively.

Though existing paid users – who previously got 1GB sample downloads for $9.99 a month –  may be disappointed at the relative price increase, Sounds.com is attempting to sweeten the deal by offering existing Pro users 150 bonus credits.

NI says: “We quickly learned that our Free and Pro price plans did not provide enough flexibility for our users. Without tools to track their usage, our subscribers were sometimes surprised when they found out that they had hit the 1 GB limit. We also had plenty of users who loved the service and were willing to pay more, but we didn’t have price plan options to allow for this upgrade.”

Sounds.com offers access to samples from NI’s Expansions range alongside content from third-party sample providers such as The Loop Loft, MVP Loops, and Symphonic Distribution.

However, the market for sample-based subscription services is getting increasingly crowded. As well as similar services from Splice and Noiiz, LA’s Output studio recently launched a combined sample subscription service and VST instrument called Arcade.

Read next: Native Instruments’ new subscription service is Spotify for samples

This article has been amended to include addition info on the Sounds credit system