Free Vst Sampler?

The title says pretty all. :P

Jokes apart, I’ve spent more time getting used to an audio program before realizing it doesn’t fit than actually making music!
As I said, I’d like to stick with Renoise but it lacks some MIDI controlled parameters I need for making music . So I’m looking for a polyvalent , good quality and free vsti sampler (used a cracked version of Halion in the past but doesn’t seems very stable on renoise ;) ). In particular, I’d like Soundfont support, key mapping and ability to map pitch bend, modulation , loop editing, triggers. I’m not saying I want to replace Renoise, it seems great for programming sequence and mess up with a sample precisely but I’m not into electronic stuff yet . ;)

Is there such vsti out there? What’s your opinion about these?


Hey Foxer,

I sold my akai z8 after renoise 2.7 as although nativity we don’t have soundfont support, renoise does all the others that you’re asking for… Your controller is what sends pitch bend and modulation, renoise can handle receiving these messages, and renoise definitely has loop editing and triggers!

I feel like a billboard for this software but if you use windows or linux, extreme sample converter will convert any of your soundfonts straight to renoise XRNI files.

I know Renoise already has these features except that I cannot send a pitch bend command to a sample instrument in live recording, so I have go through a vsti that have controllable pitch bend parameter. If only instrument enveloppe could be automated through midi cc , that would work but currently you can’t midi map instrument envelope.

Well, for Windows, Shortcircuit (1) is probably what you are looking for. Crossplatform, there is HighLife anf maybe LINUX Sampler.
Hope this helps.

Shortcircuit is best one I’ve tried and more than most people need for sample manipulation.

If you want to use sfz then Cakewalk sfz (which used to be rgc sfz) is probably your best bet and if it doesn’t work then Camel Audio Alchemy Player, but it still lacks many opcodes afaik.

But Shortcircuit is not suitable for drums. Its slow attack envelope or rather some kind of fade-in destroys attack transient of sample. Check yourself, load some 808 kick and render it from Shortcircuit. Compare it to original sample.

as FLADD said go with Highlife sampler. it`s free and the quality+possibilities are very very good.

but if you need a free simple drumsampler, check SR-202 VSTi which is free too.

Thx guys

Shortcircuit would do the trick for me. As for drums, I suck at live recording it so I will sequence it with renoise.

What? I always used SC1 for my drums, never had this problem.

In the latest v1.1.2 available on the Vember Audio website, the lowest possible attack you can set for the amplitude envelope is 0.977ms. This doesn’t seem like a lot, but it’s definitely enough to add some unwanted smoothing to the start of the sample. You might not detect it in all sounds, but for sounds that rely on the attack being sharp and instantaneous in order to really ‘snap’ (an 808 kick drum, for example), this attack smoothing transforms them into a dull ‘thud’ instead.

There’s even a bit of discussion about it on the Vember Audio forums:,2424.msg8934.html

Tested it a few times myself and can definitely confirm that it affects the sound in a noticeable way.

Zoomed in attack of an 808 kick drum sample:
2968 kick_renoise.png

Same sample after being rendered through Short Circuit:
2969 kick_sc.png

Hey thanks a lot for this info dblue! I really did not know this.
This might explain some others issues I had when starting to use SC, which I attributed to a psychological illusion back then. Turns out it wasn’t! This indeed makes SC less optimal for drum sounds.

but its annoying how you cants preview the drum sound. you have to preview it in explorer then once you find a sound you like, load it into sr202.

best free sampler for now.

Unlimited multi-timbral operation.
128 voice polyphony.
Modulation matrix with 16 modulation slots per voice.
24dB resonant filter.
Two syncable LFO + Two modulation envelopes per voice.
Polyphonic glide.
Built-in sample editor.
Automatic Loop Slicing + slice mapping.
Actually Samples! Record waves straight into the sampler.
Graphical keyboard mapping editor.
Automatic sample layout.
Drag & drop of samples/programs/performances/banks.
Automatic pitch detection.
Loop crossfading.
4 Stereo + 8 Mono outputs.
16 mappable controllers for automation.
48 mappable VST parameters for automation.
Per-sample loop start/end/direction modulation.
Multiple loop definitions per wave.
Individual outs for keyboard groups (drums).
Multiple keyboard scales.
Multiple trigger modes.
Mono/Poly/Legato operation.
8 choke groups per program.
Preview loaded programs and samples in song before loading.
Quick select of sound data via MIDI.
WAV/AIFF/AIFC/SoundFont 2 support.
Reads Typhoon compressed AIF files.
Reads Original Yamaha OS Wave files.
100% documented XML-based sound file format. Anyone can write conversion tools.
Saves data in DAW project directory.
Low CPU usage.
Fully native, optimized for SSE2.
64-bit support.