Splice vs Loopcloud – Which Is Better?

Splice is a cloud-based royalty-free sample library that focuses on sample quality and simplicity, whereas Loopcloud offers much-better DAW integration and sound-previewing software. Both services are very similar, but what’s the best?

In a nutshell, it’s all about your needs as a producer. If sample quality and selection is your top priority, then I have found Splice to have a slight advantage. However, Loopcloud features make using, editing, and auditioning samples so much easier.

Both Splice and Loopcloud offer millions of cloud-based samples that can be quickly browsed and downloaded to your computer. However, there are major differences between the two services.

Note: Splice has released “Bridge”, which likes draws inspiration from Loopcloud’s DAW-integration plugin and makes for a powerful new tool for Splice users.

Overall differences between Splice and Loopcloud

Some dilemmas cannot be solved with a straight ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer. Before knowing whether you should go for Splice or Loopcloud, you should ask yourself: what kind of producer am I?

As someone accustomed to editing samples in Ableton Live, I find Splice to be very simple and easy to integrate into my workflow. However, I have to recognize that Loopcloud’s sample-previewing features and integrated VSTs are much better than Splice’s all-too-humble Max app.

Whereas Splice offers a simple Max app with no DAW integration, Loopcloud’s software allows you to preview and edit samples while listening to your music project. Loopcloud’s samples can even be automatically linked to your project’s tempo and tone—a feature so unique it’s not included in some DAW players (Ableton Live, for instance, doesn’t allow for automatic pitch-shifted sample preview).

Interface

Fundamentally, Splice and Loopcloud allow you to browse through a massive cloud-based sample library and download only the sounds you want to. Both services let you browse through their entire catalogs without paying, which means you’ll never be forced to waste money on sounds and presets you don’t even need.

Splice and Loopcloud’s websites are very similar. You can search sounds using a comprehensive list of tags ranging from one-shots/loops to tones, genres, and even length.

DAW Integration

When it comes to DAW integration, Loopcloud is far superior. Splice’s interface was described by YouTubers such as Dirty Secretz as “annoying” and offers limited playback possibilities. Good luck trying to link your potential new loop sample to your Ableton Live project: your best shot is trying to click ‘play’ on time!

On the other hand, Loopcloud’s interface is a sound editing software on its own. You can chop sounds, change their length and pitch, and adapt their tempo. Crucially, you can also preview samples while listening to your music project. And yes, such samples can be automatically adapted not only to the tempo on your DAW, but also to your song’s tone.

This makes it a lot easier to pick the right sample. Even though Splice offers a simple and intuitive interface with quick previews, Loopcloud feels like a fully-functioning extension of your DAW.

Available Sounds

A sample library can only be as good as its sounds. And this is where Splice takes a slight upper hand. Don’t get me wrong: Loopcloud’s massive library is powered by Loopmasters’ unique catalog and features samples in every genre and style. But when it comes to sound quality and diversity, I have found Splice to take a slight edge.

Plugins

In addition to their excellent DAW VST (which allows for the aforementioned real-time sample preview), Loopcloud comes with two other VSTs: Loopcloud DRUM and Loopcloud PLAY. If yo’ure looking for convenience then these are a great option, other than that, loopcloud DRUM is effectively like Ableton drum racks with an easy-to-load catalog of presets. Still, it’s a nice additional feature that can convince some producers to choose Loopcloud over Splice.

Splice’s max app hardly feels like a plugin—it’s simply a way of using Splice to make music without needing to access their website.

Splice as a company allows you to buy some of the world’s most popular virtual instruments on a rent-to-own basis. If you’ve always wanted to get a Serum, Analog Lab, or Ozone license on a budget, you should check out Splice’s rent-to-own. However, this certainly does not come free with a Splice sounds subscription.

Splice

Splice is a music-creation platform launched in 2013. While Splice’s best known for its eclectic sample library, it also serves as a music collaboration software, allowing musicians to work simultaneously in cloud-stored DAW projects.

Splice’s library is cloud-based, which means users are only required to download the samples they will use in their productions. All the samples available on Splice are royalty free, and their catalog includes numerous packs carefully designed by well-known electronic music artists.

Splice is a subscription-based software. Users are given a certain amount of credits that they can use to download sounds. In Splice, you can also find a rent-to-own VST store, which allows you to rent licenses of popular music plugins that can eventually be yours for good.

Loopcloud

Made by the same company that brought us Loopmasters, Loopcloud is a sample library manager. Loopcloud’s library contains all the famous sounds and packs from Loopmasters, plus additional files.

The software also comes with a handy loop editor, which allows users to chop, cut, and edit sounds before download. This software can also be used to preview samples in real time, offering flawless DAW integration—meaning you can listen to how the samples fit with your productions before committing to a particular sound.

Loopcloud is a subscription-based service, but you can audition all the samples before downloading your preferred royalty-free files.

Ongoing Updates

Splice and Loopcloud are always trying to improve user experience, and they listen closely to the reviews and comparisons made by producers and reviewers over the years.

In June 2021, Splice announced the release of a new plugin called Bridge. Bridge draws inspiration from Loopcloud’s DAW-integration plugin and makes for a powerful new tool for Splice users. According to Splice, it allows samples to be auditioned in real-time alongside any music project, syncing effortlessly to your DAW’s tempo.

As for Loopcloud, they have announced the release of Loopcloud 6 in April 2021. The updated software introduces AI integration to the music platform. Other updates include a new array of effects and patterns and more detailed exporting preferences.

Storage

Both Splice and Loopcloud are cloud-based services. That’s why it’s so easy to browse through their gigantic libraries without glitches and lengthy loads, even if you’re using an average computer.

Once you commit to one of the samples in Splice’s or Loopcloud’s library, you can download the file, which will then be stored in your computer’s hard drive. An automatic folder is created in your computer and all the downloaded files are automatically stored in it.

Summary

Splice and Loopcloud are both very high-quality music platforms that can make your life as a producer a lot easier. In my opinion, Splice takes a slight edge on sample diversity and quality, whereas Loopcloud’s app and plugins are leagues ahead of Splice in terms of features.

Either way, both contain high-fidelity sample libraries and millions of sounds, that’s certainly way better than my old, limited .wav folder! Splice and Loopcloud are also perfect for inspiration, especially if you feel like you’re running out of ideas.

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