The Best Free Beat Making Software for Beginners [June 2020]
It’s never been easier to make your own music than it is in 2020. You don’t need to drop a huge amount of cash on a physical Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) or rent out a music studio. As long as you have a computer within arm’s reach, you can start diving into the world of beat making. Open-source, free, and freemium software have helped users develop their skills for years, and for any beginner looking to get started in the music scene, spending next to nothing is the best way to get started.
While there are some paid audio apps that are relatively cheap, some can run you hundreds of dollars for their professional suite of tools. While it’s worth upgrading to those apps once you have some experience under your belt, it’s tough to justify spending that much money before you know whether or not your skills make it worth it. That’s why it’s best to start by experimenting with some of your free options, like the ones in this list. Let’s take a look at some of your best options.
FL Studio is widely regarded as one of the best beat making programs out there. It’s a full Digital Audio Workstation, providing a complete music production environment for you. FL Studio has everything you need as a beginner and plenty of room to grow, including tools to compose, arrange, record, edit, mix, and master high-quality music.
FL Studio offers a free trial that’s limited to MP3 format. The full version is $199 or the full-full version is $899. So trying before you buy is definitely key here!
FL Studio is a fully featured DAW program that will take a little while to learn but once you do you could be creating professional standard music ready for broadcast.
While the learning curve is steep, the program is so popular, there are hundreds of tutorials, how-to videos and help out there to assist you should you need it. The interface is busy but you soon get used to it. The program includes lots of tools to create, sample, edit, and play.
Apple GarageBand does a credible job as a free beat making program for beginners who use a Mac. It has been redesigned, tuned for newbies and works very well on almost any Mac.
GarageBand has been around a while so there is a huge community who are very helpful and welcoming to newbies and a bunch of videos showing you how to make beats and more with this program.
The interface is clean and contains everything you need to begin creating beats or entire tracks. GarageBand includes a good beats section with session drums, beat producer, lots of samples and over a million combinations of sound apparently.
There are lots of other tools too including a new sound library, lots of effects, samples, mixing options and the inevitable iCloud and sharing. If you are a Mac user, then GarageBand is an outstanding option!
Tracktion T7 DAW is a little different. Rather than offering a limited trial or program the company offers older versions of the full DAW for free. That means you can try a fully featured DAW without any investment except time and if you want to upgrade to the newer shinier version, you can.
I will freely admit that Tracktion T7 makes it on to this list because it is a free, fully-featured DAW rather than being beginner friendly. However, there are few other options as powerful or as unlimited for the money. That said, Tracktion has always been simple to navigate and very intuitive to use.
There is still a learning curve but there are tons of resources out there to help. Tracktion T7 DAW has good documentation, training videos, technical support, and a helpful community in the Tracktion Software user forum.
LMMS deserves its place in the best free beat making software for beginners list. LMMS stands for Let’s Make Music and tries its best to allow you to do just that. It looks and feels a lot like FL Studio but is completely free and open source. It has been around for many years and still has a huge helpful community which is yet another reason to try this program.
The learning curve is long but not too steep. LMMS is a cross-platform tool that works on Windows, Mac, and Linux, enabling you to create, edit, mix and play with music as much as you like.
The software has a rich suite of tools and effects, including MIDI playback VST instrument bridge, built-in synthesizer and a lot of other features. It will take a while to master LMMS but as a free and open source program, it offers amazing value. If you are a beginner, LMMS is an excellent choice that you can continue to use as your beat making skills increase.
LMMS lives up to its tag line: “Making beats has never been easier.”
MuseScore is apparently another open source beat making program that is suitable for beginners. As a full DAW, there is a lot more to it than beats and was recommended by a friend of mine who composes classical music. The interface is similar to the other free beat making software in this list.
It takes a little while to master but there are lots of resources to help. It is fully featured but oriented more towards traditional music rather than electronic or new music. MuseScore’s tag line is “Create, play and print beautiful sheet music” pointing toward its emphasis on musical notation.
As well as composition, editing, and mixing, MuseScore has another trick up its sleeve. It can create sheet music to reflect your creativity. This may be of limited use to many, but if you play an instrument, you can create something, create a sheet, print it and play it outside the program.
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Those are what I think are the best free beat making software for beginners. Got any other suggestions? Tell us about them below if you do!