We can't think of a better representation of auditory retro nostalgia than synthwave. Synthwave is a genre all on its own, combining the warm analog synths and gated drum loops found in the 1980s media and the electronic dance music trends of the early 2000s, such as nu-disco and French house.
Over the past decade, synthwave has had a major revival, and you can now find plenty of mainstream music that honors the classic sounds of yesteryear. Of course, getting your hands on a bundle of boutique synths is an expensive endeavor and might be almost impossible to manage, depending on the size of your studio.
Luckily, there are plenty of high-end synthwave sample packs available for download on some of your favorite sample platforms.
Let's dive in and take a look at some of our favorite synthwave sample packs!
1. Linndrum - The Drum Machine
Whether you know the name or not, you're likely aware of the Linndrum getting some of your favorite 80s classics. This retro piece of gear is often voted one of the top five drum machines of all time, and can be heard on songs from 20th-century legends, such as Prince, Queen, Michael Jackson, A-Ha, and more.
The team over at Zenhiser did an excellent job recording, processing, and mastering the sounds of the LM-1 and LM-2 units to deliver a deep-dive collection of 80s drum sounds. To this day, we have yet to find a more comprehensive set of Linndrum samples and one-shots. It's clear that making a sample pack like this took a colossal amount of effort, and with 405 loops and more than 800 one-shots, you get everything you need to conjure up a new synthwave tune from your bedroom.
2. Turbo Drive Vol. 2
The way in which someone defines synthwave as a genre will depend on that person, though many people think of the Tron-style aesthetic. Neon lights and night racing are two things that, for whatever reason, have become synonymous with synthwave, whether through the streets of a real-life metropolis or your favorite video game.
From gated 80s percussion to pulsing synth basses to sparkling bell melodies, the Turbo Drive Vol. 2 sample pack from Apex has it all.
There are 137 samples in this electronic synthwave sample pack in WAV format, which was beautifully recorded and refined to deliver that late-night cruising sound we all know and love.
3. MyLoops - Free Synthwave Sample Pack
MyLoops recently released a free synthwave sample pack with more than 300MB of high-quality sample content in WAV format. Here you'll find tons of loops, one-shots, FX, and a luscious synthwave drum kit. You get everything you need to craft a new synthwave tune.
As a cherry on top, the team also included 20 synthwave Spire presets, with leads, pads, plucks, bass, FX, and more.
If that wasn't enough, they also threw in three templates for FL Studio, Cubase, and Ableton Live. It's one of the best free tools around for anybody who wants to elevate their synthwave music production.
It's worth noting that this sample pack was produced by OstAudio’s own Mike Ost, who is very well-known in the sampling community for his retro and synthwave sample content.
4. Loop Cult - Synthwave Sample Pack
The new FUTURE synthwave sample pack from Loop Cult is another neon-tinged synthwave sample pack that can guide you through the blinding lights of the city. You'll find a wide range of authentic and enchanting 80s analog sounds, which deliver the crisp and innovative tonal characteristics of the 21st century.
You get just about every element you need to start making your own synthwave anthem from home, such as reverb-drenched drums, bit-crushed percussion, chunky synth basslines, and lush synth lines.
All the sounds in this pack are available as loops and one-shots, leaving nothing out that you could possibly need in your synthwave journey!
5. Production Master - Retro Wave - Synthwave and 80s Retro
If none of these sample packs transport you right back to the 1980s, then Retro Wave from Production Master will certainly do the job. This 1GB sample pack delivers an authentic collection of instruments and sounds that are sure to ignite your nostalgia. The pack was created with analog synths like the Virus TI, the Roland Jupiter-8, and the Yamaha DX-7. The team even used retro processing techniques to make the pack sound as authentic as possible.
Beyond synthesizers, the sample pack has more than 200 drum loops and hits, which were synthesized and layered from scratch using a mixture of vintage gear, such as the LinnDrum and Roland TR-707, and modern gear, such as Xfer Serum and Virus TI. The combination of new meets old delivers a completely fresh set of synthwave drum and percussion sounds to take your vintage tracks to new heights.
If that wasn't enough, you also get 101 Xfer Serum presets, which you can tweak to your heart's delight. From pads to plucks to sequences to basses, everything is there to take you back in time.
6. Sample Magic - Neon Noir
Sample Magic is one of our personal favorite sampling squads around today. Every sample pack they release is of the highest quality and delivers exactly what you would imagine and more based on the name and aesthetic of the pack.
Neon Noir, as you might expect, caters to the darker side of synthwave, providing cinematic textures and dark melodies perfect for a dystopian underscore or eerie sound design.
Every sample was recorded in pristine 24-bit WAV and comes labeled with the key and tempo for easy searching.
7. Zenhiser - 80s Cyberpunk
The 80s Cyberpunk sample pack from Zenhiser comes with an exemplary collection of powerful synthwave samples fit for a modern take-no-prisoners dance track. With synth-soaked rhythms, dirty drum grooves, and retro gear sequences, this sample pack breaks the boundaries of 80s cyberpunk, delivering a dynamic tonal collection with plenty of song starters.
As with Zenhiser’s Linndrum set, you can expect an array of pristinely-recorded samples, beautifully organized and labeled by tempo and key.
8. Bvker's Aesthetic
Bvker’sAesthetic is a free synthwave sample pack with some of the best vintage drum sounds available, including those from Oberheim, E-MU, LinnDrum, and Roland drum machine units. Saying no to a bundle of free vintage drum sounds or free samples, in general, is pretty difficult, so when we found this free synthwave sample pack filled with 110 beautifully recorded samples, we had to say yes.
Aesthetic delivers all of the best drum sounds of the '80s that one would need to create a retro dance track. Every file was recorded 24-bit/44.1kHz quality and comes organized and normalized to make your workflow easier.
Finding a free synthwave sample pack with quality free samples is difficult. Luckily for us, Bvker was able to provide a killer mix of samples and one-shots that'll no doubt fit perfectly underneath the driving sounds of your synthwave beats.
Finding The Sounds You Need
From synth samples to drum loops, these driving sounds of past and future will fit perfectly with your songs. Try some of these samples out today and unlock the next level in your synthwave productions.