In this article you’ll find our top 10 libraries for the full version of Kontakt. We've included all kinds of useful instruments, from orchestras and drums, through guitars and pianos, up to ambient and voice libraries.
If all you have is the free Kontakt Player, make sure to see our selection of the Top 10 Kontakt Player Libraries. They work with Kontakt 6 Full as well, so feel free to check them out - in this article we're listing only the libraries we haven't mentioned there.
Let's get started!
1. Orchestra - Palette Primary Colors
Primary Colors is an amazing, fully free orchestra. It allows you to create entire pieces with full ensembles of strings, brass and woodwinds. Each of the sections has different articulation modes (Sustain, Staccato) and full modwheel expression support. This library is a great start if you’re looking to write anything orchestral. If you just need to add a strings or brass section to a track, it will do the job really well too.
2. Drums - Ivy Audio Scott Drums
Scott Drums is an incredibly well sampled drum kit, which allows you to use it in a very wide range of genres. It’s very dynamic, meaning that low velocity hits are going to have a completely different feel than high velocity hits - just like in a real drum kit. There are some useful microphone adjustment options as well. It’s also very easy to use - if you’re a good keyboard drummer, you can just open the library and start jamming right away.
3. Grand Piano - Piano in 162
“Piano in 162” is a popular Kontakt library for a reason - it’s incredibly easy to use and sounds really good. With its two sliders you can easily adjust the close and ambient microphone positions. Other than that, this grand piano’s sound just speaks for itself.
4. Electric Guitar - Shreddage 3 Stratus Free
The “Shreddage Stratus” gives you an incredible, raw and punchy stratocaster sound in a completely free Kontakt library. While it works really well in “clean” mode, it’s also very easy to get it to sound gritty with its included selection of on-board effects and presets.
5. Bass Guitar - Shreddage 3 Precision Free
The “Shreddage Precision” bass is a very cool bass guitar plugin. Just like the “Stratus”, it has a bit of character - sounds quite raw and punchy. However, it’s easy to tone down the sound with its included “Tone” control. Probably the best free bass guitar library out there!
6. Ambient & Soft - Xperimenta Minima
Despite its very simple interface, Minima has surprised us with its incredibly rich sound in the included patches. It offers a wide selection of ambient, cinematic sounding pads, as well as a bunch of very soft sounding instruments. One of our favourites is the included acoustic guitar with its intimate sound and subtle fret noises.
7. Voice - Ivy Audio Clare Solo
“Clare Solo” is an incredibly sounding solo vocalist. The library features perfect legato which allows you to create stunning melody lines. However, you’re not limited to one note at a time - it can also be used in polyphonic mode in order to play chords.
8. Choir - Embertone Ancient Voices
“Ancient Voices” sounds like a very old church choir. The library features both legato and polyphony, as well as two mic positions and a built-in reverb effect.
9. Strings - Embertone Intimate Strings Lite
The “Intimate Strings” library sounds amazing for a freebie. Despite its minimal interface, it gives you both mono and polyphonic options.
10. Woodwind - Embertone Ivory Wind
“Ivory Wind” is a stunning flute-like woodwind instrument that sounds incredibly realistic. Mono and Polyphonic modes included, as well as additional mic options.