*Editor's note: This article was updated in September 2021 with new insights and information.
So you want to compare Soundstripe vs PremiumBeat?
You’re in the right place.
I researched and wrote this entire article to help you make a more informed decision about where to license royalty free music.
In the following paragraphs I’ll compare the following:
- 3rd party reviews of each platform
- Audio libraries
- Music licensing and usage terms
- Plugins, integrations, or add-ons
Sound like what you’re looking for? Then let’s get to the good stuff.
Whenever you read a side-by-side comparison of anything on the internet, a healthy amount of skepticism is warranted.
Everyone has biases, many of which are hidden from the people who possess them. Even the most stringent side-by-side comparer is susceptible to their own personal opinions.
I’m no different. I’m only human, and I work as a writer for Soundstripe. I am inherently biased. There, I said it.
However, I have taken measures to mitigate my partisanship. I’m only comparing Soundstripe vs PremiumBeat on objective measures, e.g., the number of songs in each catalog, the respective pricing model, and so on.
Of course, opinion is important too. The quality of the music and the usability of each platform are both important factors. But they are subjective. So I’ve gathered some reviews from YouTube creators to cover those topics.
Right, so let’s start with the most important stuff: the music.
Everyone has different priorities, so I can’t tell you precisely what you should look for in a music library. Only you know whether the number of songs, quality of music, or ease of use are most important.
But I can compare the size of each library, the number of genres, and other features so you can come away more informed than you were before.
Soundstripe audio library
At the time of writing, Soundstripe has over 6,000 exclusive, royalty free songs. Our music team is adding a little over 200 new songs a month, and our library contains over 20 genres, from go-to picks like cinematic music to niche things like industrial rock.
To find a specific type of song, you can navigate our library using eleven different filters, like beats per minute (BPM), key, instrument, and mood.
If you’re not sure what you’re looking for, or you just want to skip all the searching, we have loads of curated playlists by our music team.
Playlists are organized around mood (like ambient or epic), genres (like indie or jazz), or use cases (like music for Twitch or podcast music). You can also check out each week’s most popular playlists to see what’s trending with other creatives.
Want to browse a few playlists? Listen for free here.
PremiumBeat Audio Library
PremiumBeat has a music library of around 21,000 songs, which is a pretty extensive collection.
Their library is categorized into 27 main genres, each of which branches into multiple subgenres that push their total number of genres to well over 100. For example, Classical Music can be further sorted by 20th Century, Baroque, Classical Period, Medieval, Original Compositions, and Romantic Period.
You can also filter by mood, BPM, song duration, and artist — all handy filters that you would expect from a music licensing platform.
Instead of playlists PremiumBeat has “collections” with themes like working out, vlogging, and nostalgia.
PremiumBeat is also owned by Shutterstock, so if you're also looking for stock images or videos, there's a partnership there. But it's a different provider and service, not something included in a PremiumBeat subscription.
Simple music licensing is critical for creators.
Companies like Soundstripe and PremiumBeat began as alternatives to traditional music licensing, because traditional music licensing sucks. It’s expensive, time-consuming, and unpredictable.
But I digress. You really want to understand how each platform licenses their music, i.e., the usage terms, because that dictates how you can use each song in your projects.
Soundstripe Music Licensing
Our licensing process is designed for simplicity. If you sign up for Soundstripe, you get unlimited licenses. That means you can download as many songs as you want from our library.
We only have one type of license: a single-use, perpetual license, which lets you use a song in your video or podcast for as long as you want. You’re protected legally until the end of time, amen.
We don’t put any restrictions on what channels you can use the songs on (so if you make a video that gets played on broadcast TV, that’s cool) and we don’t upcharge you if your work starts getting a traction.
When you license a song, we do ask that you tell us what kind of project you’re using it for, like a documentary, podcast, or vlog. That way we know which type of songs are most popular, and we can add more tracks that are similar to what you love and remove tracks that aren’t being used as much.
PremiumBeat Music Licensing
PremiumBeat’s licensing is project-based and perpetual. Once you download a song, you can use it as many times as you like in that particular project.
The main difference is that PremiumBeat divides licenses into two levels: Standard and Premium.
The Standard license covers web, corporate, and personal use. For apps, DVDs, and video games that. generate revenue, this license covers you for up to 1,000 downloads. It does not cover you for advertising on TV or radio.
The Premium license beefs up what you get with the Standard license.
It includes all the web, corporate, and personal use stuff, while also covering unlimited app, DVD, or video game downloads. TV and radio advertising are covered as well. You can even use a Premium license in any film or theater production with a budget below two million.
Soundstripe uses a subscription pricing model that gives you unlimited access to our library. We have different pricing tiers to accommodate a range of creator needs.
Here’s a breakdown:
A Music subscription opens the door to our curated library of 6,000 songs, and can choose either a monthly or yearly payment plan.
You can also add additional libraries onto your subscription, which also adds 55,000 sound effects and/or 70,000 stock video clips.
Here’s a visual aid:
PremiumBeat operates on one of two paths: a single-song licensing model or a monthly subscription.
With the single-song model, you can download any of their songs for $49 or $199, depending on whether you choose the Standard or Premium license.
The monthly subscription only costs you $13 to license a track, but you're limited to 5 tracks per month. It comes out to around $65 a month.
It’s pretty straightforward:
Plugins and integrations are an essential part of technology. Without them, we’d be transported back to the 1980s when software was developed in isolation without much thought for how it would interact with other programs.
Let’s not go back to the 1980s. The fashion and music were great, but the software scene left something to be desired.
Case in point: Royalty free music is essential to good video production, but it’s probably not where you start. More likely, you’re doing some filming and adding music in later.
Your footage is already in another piece of software, so it would be objectively better if the software you use for editing worked with your music licensing provider. Your life would become that little bit easier.
Here’s a look at Soundstripe and PremiumBeat’s plugins.
With the Premiere Pro integration, you can preview, license, and import royalty free music from Soundstripe’s library directly 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 out before you actually license the music.
Our Twitch extension gives streamers easy access to our library of royalty free music so they can stop worrying about copyright claims and still play good music while they stream.
At the time of writing, PremiumBeat doesn’t offer any plugins.
However, PremiumBeat is owned by Shutterstock, which offers a plugin for Premiere Pro. With that installed, you can access ShutterStock photos in Photoshop and their vector images and graphics in Illustrator and InDesign.
So there you have it: two music licensing platforms enter, one leaves. Ok, not really.
Still, I hope this side by side comparison has given you better insight into Soundstripe vs Premiumbeat. Both platforms are excellent choices for royalty free music, but the real difference lies in the model.
If you need a lot of music Soundstripe is probably right for you (unlimited downloads and all that). If you only need a few songs, PremiumBeat is probably the way to go.
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