Holiday Deals For Digital Musicians In 2016 (UPDATED)

by Doug

MIDI Lifestyle Administrator

DISCLAIMER: The 2016 holiday season is over so most of these deals are over.

DIY MIDI Controller Kit - 30% Off!

For the musician who is also a wannabee do-it-yourself-er, there’s a great Christmas deal that is sure to jumpstart the heart of their inner Tesla.

The limited-edition Holiday Package starts with the DIY MIDI Controller Bible, which, along with its MIDI projects, serves as an electronics project tutorial that teaches alongside the projects.

Books are great, but more than one budding inventor finds their inspiration short-circuited after finishing a book, weighed down by the logistics of acquiring all the paraphernalia necessary to start the projects.

DIY MIDI Controller to the rescue! The Holiday Package includes all the bits and pieces necessary to complete the projects in the books. From solder to soldering iron, electronic components to project enclosure, it’s all here.

With a value over $200, knock $50 off that until the end of December. It’s like getting the book for free.

The wonderful reality of music creation in the 21st Century is that there’s no need to sell one’s soul or win a lottery to create world-class music. Loops, samples, virtual instruments, mics, gadgets and all manner of musical gewgaws can be had for the change you find under the sofa cushions.

Here is a collection of under $100 gems that any computer or tablet-based musician will put to good use.

Orchestral Companion Strings - 99% off! ($1)

Plug-In Boutique has another amazing $1 offer for the SONiVOX Orchestral Companion - Strings package. Save nearly $100 over full price for a library of over 9 GB of string samples. All major plug-in formats come with the package. Really, for $1, you can’t pass this up!

Wave Alchemy Synth Drum Library - 25% Off!

Available through Loopmasters.com, this is a collection of electronic drum sounds, if 5,900 samples and hits can be called a collection. ‘Comprehensive library’ is more like it.

Ten of the most influential analog synthesizers of all time serve as the sources for these programmed drum samples. Three sections feature, respectively, unprocessed, mildly processed and specially processed samples while a fourth section arranges samples into a selection of drum kits, mapped for a variety of software samplers.

Processing is top-notch – 973 MB of 24-bit sounds. There’s a package dedicated to and pre-mapped for the Ableton Live DAW software. That makes it simple to incorporate these sounds into a Live setup, with macros already assigned for on the fly digital tone shaping. A perfect match for Ableton’s Push Controller.

At the time of publication, Loopmasters.com had this collection on sale for a buck. You heard right. Usually in the $50 range, if you can beat the sale deadline, you have an “A” quality gift for stocking stuffer price.

VoxBox Vocal Processing Plug-In - 55% Off

Making vocals stand out is often the most critical element separating the good songs from the great. Even when you have killer emotion and technically strong performances, the singer can sometimes get trapped behind the walls of sound behind them on the track.

That’s nothing new in the recording world, but you can help the music creator on your list with a $30 solution in the VoxBox vocal processor, another offering from the Plugin Boutique. VoxBox is a vocal thickener that works simply, without need for multi-channel processing and banks of additional effects.

Five virtual knobs are all it takes to put a polished sheen on your lead vocal. This plugin beefs up and widens the sound of the singer without weighing down your CPU. VoxBox supports all plugin formats, so there’s no problem matching it with any major DAW.

At less than half-price, this is a budget friendly addition to any digital musician’s toolbox.

Amazon’s Top Deals in Musical Instruments

Let’s face it, you know your musician way better than any cheesy Internet gift-giving guide can. Improve your chances for finding the perfect deal using Amazon’s Top Deals. The Musical Instruments category has many, many great ideas, priced from stocking stuffer to feature gift levels.

Here are a couple of sample Top Deals currently listed:

Akai MPK Mini MKII USB MIDI Controller:  A desktop 25-key synth keyboard with 8 performance pads, 8 control knobs with assignable functions and typical keyboard control buttons such as octave controls. At 60 percent off, it’s more steal than deal.

Marantz MPM-2000U Studio Condenser USB microphone: Save 28 percent on this studio quality USB condenser mic, perfect for musicians with computer-based recording setups, a mic with audio interface capability at an under-$100 price. This package includes spider-style shock mount, cable and carrying case.


Image-Line End of Year Sale

Plug-ins are to the computer-based musician what shoes or handbags are to women, what pasta is to an Italian, what a fire hydrant is to a dog, what a… you get the idea. So when an entire inventory goes on sale, you take notice.

Start working on the electronic musician on your gift list to drop some names about the plug-ins they’re dreaming about. Image-line created over 30 plug-ins for use with their flagship product, FL Studio, one of the leading software DAWs out there, popular since the days it was known as Fruity Loops.

Transient Processor and Transistor Bass are two new products that may be of interest, and the Maximus volume maximizer is a fantastic tool for treating both individual tracks and complete mixes.

iZotope Stutter Edit + Mobius Filter - 80% Off

The reputation that iZotope developed makes it one of the hottest audio plug-in providers on the scene. Stutter Edit is one of those products that defies description. It’s an effect that plays like and instrument, turning typical music creation on its head.

When you see a name brand plug-in like Stutter Edit at an 80 percent discount, you’re allowed to gasp. Gasp away, because until the end of 2016, the Plugin Boutique sells this knockout for $49 rather than its regular $249 price.

There’s neither time nor space to list Stutter Edit’s features here. Rest assured that, despite its complexity, the tool is noted for its feature set and ease of use. You’ll run out of energy before Stutter Edit runs out of options.

As if that’s not enough, the 80 percent off deal includes a free copy of Mobius Filter, an additional $50 value. Mobius Filter gives your sounds movement like you’ve never felt. Use it to pinpoint the perfect static filter setting or use any of its motion options.

This is a killer one-two punch, useful for any digital music creator.

Bitwig Studio+ Bundle 27% Off

It is not confirmed how long this deal will last, but as of Dec. 19, 2016, the Bitwig Studio Plus Bundle is 27% off.

This is an excellent opportunity for new producers to get a jump start in music with this affordable package.​

It comes with a variety of sample packs such as Essential Minimal Techno and Cinematic FX. It also includes the BigKick VST plugin.

Overall great deal aimed at newer producers!​

Xpand!2 - $1!

Xpand!2 is a great synth that usually retails around $100. Now it's only $1 for the holidays!

I like this plugin for it's pads mainly, but it's also great for leads, basses, and more.​

iZotope Trash is only $29!

iZotope Trash2 is, hands down, one of the best distortion plugins out there. 

This holiday, you can get Trash2 AND 2 expansion packs for only $29. This is an awesome deal.​


Ableton Live 9 Sale

More than any other DAW software, Ableton Live moved computer recording into the performance direction. Live, just like its name.

Until January 11, the online Ableton store offers the latest versions of Live and the Push premium hardware controller at 20 percent off.

There are three versions of Live 9: Intro, Standard and Suite. You can match the package to budget with the Push controller included in each.

If your musician was naughty and doesn’t deserve the Push, the discount still applies to each version of just the software alone. The deals don’t end there. Check out the shop for all sale items.

Samson and Hartke Holiday Sale

Kicking off on Black Friday, the Samson and Hartke Holiday Sale runs until New Year’s Eve. These products are likely on hand at your local music store, so if you’re buying for a bass player or performing musician, check out the site then head to the nearest dealer.

In particular, Hartke bass stomp boxes sell under $50 and there are great prices on 12 and 15-inch combo bass amps. Hartke is a leading name in bass amplification.

The Samson brand offers deals on wireless mic systems and active PA speakers. Thousand watt 15-inch speakers under $300? Believe it, but only until the end of the year.

IK Multimedia 20th Anniversary Sale

IK Multimedia has done a lot in its 20 years to shake up and enhance the way we make music. Makers of both hardware and software, they create products that often cap a particular niche.

Their 20th Anniversary Sale has been extended to the end of the year. Nearly all products have a 20 percent discount. Well, except for some software bundles coming in a 40 percent off.

In particular, AmpliTube and SampleTank have the big discount. Many musicians know these from lite versions packed with hardware products. This is a chance to get the big deal on the Big Brother.

Amazon Home Audio Deals

Nope, we’re not done with Amazon yet. The Home Audio section also crams a wide range of musician-friendly gifts into one easy search.

Wireless and streaming audio systems are the next wave in quality listening, both in the studio and the living room. This is the place to find new offerings in Bluetooth speakers, wireless headphones and hybrid technologies such as Amazon Echo.

The analog audio enthusiast is well served too. Turntables, wired speakers and conventional component stereos also turn up through the Home Audio deals. Once again the prices range from affordable to top of the line.

In particular, check out the Home Audio Deals link.

It’s also updated often, so keep a close eye for the ideal offering.

Amazon Warehouse Deals

As the world’s largest online retailer, things don’t stop with just musical instrument deals. Amazon’s Warehouse Deals feature a world of fast-changing electronics offers. Check back here frequently, as the feature products update frequently.

At time of publication, there are deals on Mackie CR3 monitors, Akai Project 50X headphones and the Alesis Recital fully-weighted key digital piano. There’s no telling how long these deals will last, so keep updating until you find the perfect gift.