*Updated March 2022
So you’re considering Soundstripe vs Musicbed?
Good news: This article is just what you’re looking for.
From pricing to music quality, there are a lot of details to consider when you’re deciding where to license royalty free music. There's also a whole bunch of music licensing companies to choose from, and you probably don't want to waste money or time trying out all of your options.
This article covers the most salient points so you can make an informed decision and avoid buyer’s remorse when it comes to finding the best music licensing company for your needs.
To be specific, I’ll compare the following areas:
- Third party opinions
- Music library (and sound effects)
- Music licensing
- Integrations and add-ons
Sound relevant to your interests? Then let’s dive in.
Third party opinions
Before we move on, let’s acknowledge the elephant in the room: I work for Soundstripe. So naturally, I’m a bit biased.
But to make sure I give you an objective view of Soundstripe vs Musicbed, I’ve taken steps to mitigate my bias.
First, I’ve only stated facts about each platform and excluded any opinion. For example, you’ll notice I don’t analyze the music quality of each audio library, because that’s almost entirely subjective.
The comparisons I make are between facts about each audio library, i.e., the number of songs, the filtering options, etc.
Second, I've included a few reviews from YouTube creators, who in this case are reliable independent sources. You'll get the most value out of their opinions because they're free to say whatever they think about both music licensing companies.
(And if they have a financial relationship with either Soundstripe or Musicbed, they’ll tell you in the video.)
Without further ado, let’s get to some of those reviews.
Here’s Tristan Barrocks comparing several music licensing sites. He gets to Musicbed at 6:47 and Soundstripe at 8:13.
And here’s Matt Johnson comparing a medley of sites. Look for Musicbed at around 5:00 and Soundstripe at 11:58.
Let’s start with the good stuff: the music. Every music licensing company will have an audio library of some sort, but the specifics can vary a great deal.
Everyone’s priorities are different, so it’s difficult for me to tell you exactly what you should care about when you’re choosing where to license from. But I can speak in generalities.
Most creators tend to prioritize music quality, how easy the library is to navigate, and the variety of music. The sheer number of songs available is also important to many people.
Here’s how Soundstripe compares versus Musicbed.
Soundstripe music library
As I'm writing this, Soundstripe has over 7,000 songs, over 60,000 sound effects, and over 100,000 stock video clips. But since we're a royalty free music company, we're committed to adding new music every month (around 200 new songs).
The user experience in our library is designed to help you find the right song as quickly as possible. We have a range of playlists that cover everything from specific moods to project type, like advertising or film. And we have 21 genres to help you browse that way.
If you want to find specific songs, you can use any of our many different music search filters. I won't list all of them here, but some of the most popular include instrument, beats per minute (BPM), key, and mood. You also have a lot of the same music search features for our sound effects library too.
Musicbed music library
Musicbed was founded in 2011, which makes it one of the first music licensing sites to hit the scene.
It's hard to find out exactly how many songs Musicbed has in their library, but they're adding new music weekly, so I have to imagine the selection is pretty large — probably over 10,000. And almost all of it is high quality stuff, which is why Musicbed has remained a popular option for brands and creators.
They also employ filters to make finding that perfect song a little easier. You’ll know the classics like genre, mood, artist, and instrument. Attributes, song length, and build are a few of Musicbed’s more unique filters.
Musicbed also has lots and lots of curated playlists, including a dedicated Filmmakers playlist, which is different but pretty cool.
Music licensing is important — like, really important.
You may love the music in one audio library, but if the usage terms of the licenses are too strict, then you might not be able to use the songs the way you want to.
What’s more, if the licensing agreements are too complex, it might be difficult to even know if you’re using the songs legally. Plus, studying convoluted licensing terms burns time you could spend creating.
With those points in mind, let’s look at what it’s like to license music from Soundstripe and Musicbed.
A subscription to Soundstripe grants you unlimited song downloads from our audio library.
Each one of those music licenses is a perpetual license. That means you have permission to use each individual song in multiple projects, as long as your subscription is still active. The license doesn't expire — even if you cancel your membership.
To license a song, all you have to do is hit the "Download" button and you're all set.
We don’t have restrictions on what type of mediums you can use your licenses for, so if your video hits it big and gets featured on broadcast TV, you’re all good.
And those licensing "rules" apply to everything you can get from Soundstripe: royalty free music, sound effects, or stock video footage. Because we think providing an easy and affordable option for licensing music is just as important as delivering high quality music.
If you sign up for a subscription, Musicbed’s licensing is similar to Soundstripe’s: You sign up for a subscription and get unlimited licenses from their library. (You can also choose to license individual songs without the subscription.) Most of these licenses are perpetual licenses.
The main difference with Musicbed is that the type of usage terms, i.e., how you can use the music, differ based on your subscription.
For example, if you just want to get songs for personal use on YouTube, you can absolutely do that with their lowest tier subscription. If you want to get music for a video your company is advertising on Facebook, you have to move to the Business subscription. And while both offer unlimited music licenses, the price differences start to scale very quickly.
Getting unlimited licenses is great, and knowing that both options provide that is probably a big relief for you. But comparing Soundstripe vs Musicbed is more than just library sizes or even licensing models. (Although both of those things are super important too!)
Obviously the most important factor for a lot of filmmakers, creators, and advertisers comes down to pricing. So let's break down the similarities and differences.
Musicbed's pricing is split along two main categories: business users and individual users. From there, you'll go through a set of choices to help fine-tune the music license options available to you. (It'll also help you figure out if a subscription model makes sense for your process.)
When it comes to subscription rates, Musicbed offers different plans depending on your coverage needs. Here's what you'll see when you land on the pricing page:
To license a song for single use, there's also different rates based on your individual or business needs. For example, if you're a YouTube creator who needs a song for client work (and you have a small client base), here's a breakdown of your options:
You have a lot of different paths to take with pricing at Musicbed, and that can be a blessing or a curse. Obviously, you have the option to avoid paying for certain license converage you don't need for the content you make (and the yearly subscription model does streamline that).
However, knowing which option fits your needs best can lead to a lot of comparisons between different types of pricing plans, and that doesn't always work for creators or filmmakers who take on different projects each month.
Soundstripe has three membership tiers: Creator, Pro, and Pro Plus.
Any of the plans can be monthly or yearly subscription options, so you only have to commit to what you're comfortable with. And more importantly, all three include unlimited music licenses, our sound effects library, and perpetual license guarantees.
Here’s a breakdown:
Integrations and add ons
At its core, an audio library is a software platform. When you sign up to get songs from a music licensing company, you’re essentially leasing their platform.
As a creator, you’re also using other software to produce your work. If the other applications you use integrate with your audio library, then your life will be a lot easier.
Almost all software companies understand the importance of this concept, which is why the successful ones work hard to build integrations with other tools they know their customers use. Just look at Slack. They have over 150 integrations. And they’re basically taking over the world.
So what type of integrations and add ons do Soundstripe and Musicbed provide?
With the Premiere Pro integration, you can preview, license, and import royalty free music from Soundstripe’s library to your timeline in Premiere Pro.
The Frame.io integration allows you to send watermarked versions of Soundstripe songs over to Frame.io projects to try them out before you actually license the music.
And the Twitch extension allows streamers to find and play royalty free music during their livestreams so they can stop worrying about copyright claims.
Musicbed has a two-way integration with Spotify. You can follow their artists and listen to curated playlists in the Spotify app. If you don’t feel like juggling multiple browser tabs, you can also find and follow Spotify playlists from inside the Musicbed application.
And there you have it: Soundstripe vs Musicbed. Two good places to get royalty free music for your latest film, vlog, or podcast.
Who should you choose? Well, that’s up to you. I said before I have my biases, but Musicbed is a good platform, too.
Review the sections covered in this post, and rank which areas are most important to you when choosing between music licensing companies. Then judge Soundstripe and Musicbed on your new list of criteria.
Presto, now you have your answer.
Interested in reading more top resources and getting our best filmmaking tips and tricks? Here are a couple of our most popular articles from across the Soundstripe blog, including other comparisons of music licensing companies:
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