Welcome to our Common Questions page.
Please select from any of the main topics listed above. If you want to search this page, simply hold down Ctrl-f (Windows) or Command-f (Mac) and type your search words into your browser. If you do not find your answer here, please post your question in our forum and we will promptly reply.
Q: What do I need, at a bare minimum to run Satellite on my computer?
A: Windows XP/2000/ME/98: 1 GHz processor, 1 GB Ram, ASIO compatible soundcard, VST or RTAS host (if not running standalone)
Mac OSX Tiger: 800 MHz processor, 1 GB Ram, Core Audio, VST, AU, or RTAS host (if not running standalone).
We recommend at least 2 GB of RAM as well as a recent model CPU to take full advantage of Satellite. We recommend an Intel Mac or at the very least a dual 1.8 GHz G5 processor. Disc storage and disc speed is not an issue with Satellite.
Because Samplebase SoundBlocks are downloadable in file sizes up to 200MB,
we HIGHLY recommend a fast broadband connection. If you can get speeds higher than 512 kbps, your wait for downloads will be minimal. We also recommend the latest browser technologies for the best
experience with Samplebase. We use Flash to stream audio demos and in some of the site navigation (especially the home page). If you do not currently have the latest version of Flash installed, please update it now. As always, we recommend the latest computer technologies in order to get the most out of Samplebase.
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Q: What is Samplebase™?
A: A very easy to use website for finding and downloading professionally sampled (and affordable) instruments and loops.
Tips For Using the Samplebase Website
1. Use a valid email address. Samplebase download links are sent to the email address you have registered with. That's why it's important to make sure you are entering an address you have access to. We're not going to share your email address with anyone, so you don't need to worry. Visit your "My Account" page to make sure the correct information is listed.
2. Add Samplebase to your SPAM filter . We send all download links from our automated friend, Spaceman Spiff. Thus it is important that you add the following address to your "allowed sender" list: firstname.lastname@example.org. Otherwise you will always need to check your SPAM folder for download links (if using a 3rd party web-based SPAM filter you won't get any email at all). If you have an account with providers like Earthlink or SPAM Arrest, they offer SPAM Blocker protection that must be administered through a special control panel on their website.
3. Make sure you have the latest browser. We use the latest web technologies to help make your experience a pleasant one. Please make sure that your browser is up to date to get the most seamless experience. We've tested the site with Firefox (OSX Intel, Windows and Ubuntu Linux), Safari (OSX) and Internet Explorer (Windows). We recommend against using "modified" browsers that come with your Internet service provider's installation package, such as the AT&T/Yahoo browser. These types of browsers do NOT work well with the Samplebase service.
4. Make sure you have the latest version of Flash installed. We use Flash to deploy our audio and video demos. This is actually a much better method than using any other technology. Flash is cross-platform, and allows you to quickly audition the sounds from our SoundBlocks, all from the same page without popping open new windows.
5. Use a broadband connection. The SoundBlocks we offer are relatively small in size, and optimized for quick delivery...that is if you're using a broadband connection. Sorry modem users, but you'll get frustrated pretty quickly here. Our audio demos are delivered in 192 kbps MP3 format, so again you'll need AT LEAST that speed in order to even stream those. Obviously the faster the connection, the better. However, we recommend not using anything slower than a 512 kbps connection. To find out what your connection speed is, try this handy link.
6. Add Samplebase.com to your AD blocker. If you don't you will miss out on some key features, like audio demos and video tutorials. Flash is used by many sites to serve advertisements. Samplebase does not serve advertisements (other than for Samplebase related stuff), so you can feel safe allowing our Flash movies to pass through your AD blocker.
Troubleshooting the Website and Email
Q. Why is the download link in my email not working?
A. If you click on the email link that is sent to you and you get an error message, your computer is not reading the entire link. The cause for this is still unknown, but we have found a work-around for this very rare situation. Simply highlight the entire link, copy it and then paste it into your browser window. You should then be prompted to log in, and finally your request should begin downloading.
Q. Nothing happens when I click the link in my email, what's wrong?
A. If you don't get an error and nothing at all seems to be happening, here are some likely causes:
1. Your browser is blocking the download (security settings are too high). Internet Explorer will pop up a very small, yellow bar just below the address bar which you must click to start your download. We have also had reports that some browsers that are supplied with internet software (from AT&T/Yahoo for example), install added security features that are hard to disable. We recommend against using these "hold your hand" type browsers as they cause more trouble than they are worth.
2. Check your firewall to make sure it is allowing you to download .exe files from Samplebase.
3. You may have already downloaded the file to the "default download location" on your computer. Firefox, for example defaults to downloading to the desktop. Satellite is very small and can download so fast that you may not realize it.
Q. I'm not getting any email from Samplebase. When I choose the version of Satellite I want, or place an order, no email arrives. What's going on?
1. First, if you are downloading Satellite it can take up to 5 minutes for the link to arrive. Please be patient. If you are downloading SoundBlocks, depending on the size of the SoundBlock you are downloading it can take up to 5 minutes per SoundBlock. Usually it's a bit faster than this, but please be patient.
2. If you still do not receive an email link after the appropriate time has elapsed, check to make sure you have entered the correct email address by visiting your "My Account" page. If you see the correct email address, the problem may be with your email service. Some free email providers like AOL, Hotmail, Yahoo!, and GMail may flag your download links as SPAM. Check your SPAM folder to see if it ended up there.
3. Another problem could be with your internet service provider, such as Earthlink or Spam Arrest, who filter email BEFORE it gets to your inbox. These tools need to be accessed via a special control panel that they provide. Contact your internet service provider to allow all email from "samplebase.com". As a last resort, please contact us and we'll work with you to resolve the issue.
Q: I'm having trouble logging into Samplebase. Can you help me?
A: Of course we can! First, remember to allow cookies from Samplebase (no we don't track you). If you've forgotten your user name or password, please go HERE to have them emailed to you. If you've tried all of the above and are not having success, please do not create another account if you already have one. ESPECIALLY if you have already downloaded Satellite and SoundBlocks. The repercussions of this are...well, not good. We'll help you get back in! Simply contact us!
Q: Can I re-download a SoundBlock that I've purchased?
A: Yes! Simply visit your "My Account" page and you'll see it listed there. All you have to do is click on "Request Download Link" and you'll get an email with a link to the SoundBlock within 5 minutes or less, typically.
Q: I'm using Internet Explorer and some of the graphics are "jumping" as I click through the links. What's going on?
A: No, you're not having an acid flashback. Microsoft recently lost a lawsuit whereby they were required to "detach" the ability to load plug-ins automatically into IE. Needless to say, the "new method" doesn't work as well as the "old". This "jumpiness" is a fault with the way the browser handles the Flash plug-in and nothing can be done about it. We deeply apologize and suggest you use Firefox if it becomes bothersome.
Q: What do the "instrument", "loop", and "one-shot" icons mean?
A: These are the types of sounds in a SoundBlock. To better explain, let's break them out by type:
1. Instruments consist of multi-sampled sounds that can either be played chromatically, or in context of a drum pattern. Instruments allow you the most flexibility if you want to create and perform your own melodies or rhythms from scratch. Some drum loop SoundBlocks consist of drum kits. These are considered instruments, because you can use your sequencer, or import a MIDI loop to perform each hit and create a rhythm.
2. Loops consist of REX, WAV or AIF sounds that loop after a certain number of bars. Loops don't offer as much flexibility as instruments. However, they offer instant gratification. There are many musical phrases and drum loops on offer at Samplebase that will help you create music quickly. Many organic instruments like guitar, vocals, orchestral sounds, etc. are extremely difficult to reproduce convincingly when in instrument form. This is where loops come in handy, as they are performed and recorded by professionals to give you the authenticity you need.
3. One-Shots/Phrases generally consist of sounds that are typically not played chromatically as an instrument, and do not loop. Some examples would be vocal shouts, sound effects, transitions, etc.
Q: Do your audio demos show all the sounds within a SoundBlock?
A: Nope, our demos are only the tip of the iceberg for each SoundBlock! We do the best we can to show just enough to help you decide if this is what you're looking for. We don't use any audible watermarking. This is so we don't intrude upon your auditioning experience. However, the way we present our audio demos exposes the sounds to piracy. We feel that this is a worthy trade-off however. It just prevents us from showing you everything that is contained within a SoundBlock.
Q: Can I make a request if you don't have something I'm looking for?
A: Absolutely! We're very interested in hearing what it is you'd like to download from Samplebase. If we don't carry the type of sounds you're looking for, please don't hesitate to put in a request via our online form, HERE. All requests will be taken seriously, unless you're looking for fart noises, or the like.
Q: I'm looking at the patch list on each SoundBlock page to see what's inside. Why are some of the patches listed with the name ".2", ".3", and so on?
A: Often times we will duplicate patches so we can change voicing and effects on one without affecting the other. We don't want you to get any misconceptions so we've named duplicated patches with a period and number that represents how many times said patch was duplicated. What's cool is that we can make one patch sound completely different with its duplicated version. It also helps to conserve space in RAM, download size, and storage size.
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Q: What is Satellite?
A: Satellite is a free sampler that can be downloaded from Samplebase. It features a high quality, multi-timbral synth engine that includes premium effects, pitch and time stretching, and host tempo sync. It will load into any VST, Audio Units, RTAS DAW (Digital Audio Workstation or sequencer). It is also available as a stand-alone application. Users may upgrade to SatellitePro for $149.
Q: What is the difference between SatelliteFree and SatellitePro?
A: It's better to show you. Click here and you will see!
Q: Does Satellite use disc streaming?
A: No. Satellite loads directly into system RAM. In fact, many newer sample libraries are streaming from system RAM and getting away from solely relying on streaming from hard disc because of polyphony issues.
Q: Does Satellite use copy protection?
A: Yes, but you'll hardly know it's there—no dongles, no serial numbers, no challenge-response. When you download Satellite, you can make copies of it along with your SoundBlocks and take them with you wherever you like. The standalone version even works on most forms of removable media.
Q: How do I install Satellite in my DAW (Digital Audio Workstation)?
A: This is an excellent question, and we have put together a guide to help you. It's located in our forum: here
Q: Do I need a MIDI controller to use Satellite?
A: We highly recommend that you use a MIDI controller to get the most out of Satellite (preferably with assignable knobs and sliders). If you don't have one (keyboard/drum pads) you can use your DAW's MIDI editor to draw in the midi information, but this isn't ideal unless you simply want to trigger the sounds and export them as loops to use outside of Satellite.
Q: I'm trying to load in a SoundBlock but it seems to take a long time. Is something wrong?
A: Satellite loads all of the sounds from a SoundBlock directly into RAM. Because SoundBlocks utilize up to 50% lossless compression for quicker downloading and smaller storage size, when you load one into Satellite for the first time it can take a few seconds. Don't worry, this is perfectly normal and only happens once.
Q: When I try to switch to a new Multi in one SoundBlock, it takes a while. What's wrong?
A: The first time you switch to a new Multi, our time stretch algorithm needs to analyze the audio within each patch. Depending on how many patches are in the Multi and how long the samples are, there may be a brief pause before you can start playing that Multi. It usually doesn't take more than a few seconds, and after the calculations are completed you will then be able to blast through all the Multis in your SoundBlock without delay.
Q: Why does my DAW/Satellite crash when I try to load or save a SoundBlock on my Windows computer?
A: The issue has been isolated to an antiquated "PC Audio Optimization" technique. Specifically when you turn off the paging file or set your own values. This causes your RAM to do all the work and has proven to be problematic. To change this setting back, go to START + SETTINGS + CONTROL PANEL + SYSTEM and click on the ADVANCED tab. Under PERFORMANCE select the SETTINGS button. Now click the ADVANCED tab and at the bottom under VIRTUAL MEMORY click the CHANGE button. Make sure that SYSTEM MANAGED SIZE is selected and be sure to click the SET button BEFORE you click OK. You will then be prompted to restart your computer. After restarting, you should no longer experience this problem. If you do, you may have a problem with your RAM, or not enough of it. Make sure you have at least 1 Gig in your computer before trying to load SoundBlocks.
Q: How do I turn off the effects?
A: Click on the "Main" tab and then locate the "FX Info" button at the top right. You will see 4 effect "modules". Click on the "lit" numbers to see them change to an "unlit" state. Now your effects are off. You'll have to do this for every respective multi, and you must save the SoundBlock if you wish for it to retain those settings. In Satellite Pro you can can click on the "Effects" tab and either click on "FX Bypass + All Off" button, or click on each effect module's "On" button to disable them individually.
Q: How do I load in Patches or Multis from other SoundBlocks and use them together?
A: For this you will need to use the "Browse Screen". First, make sure you are working in an empty Multi on the SoundBlock display (far left window). Click on the "Main" tab, and then select "Browse" from the button in the middle. Next, click "Choose File" and locate the SoundBlock you wish to obtain sounds from. The SoundBlock will take a few seconds to open and will show you the available Multis by default. If you highlight each Multi, you will see it's respective patches listed in the right column. If you load in the entire selected Multi (by either double-clicking or selecting "Load Selected") you will over-write the current Multi listed in the SoundBlock display (far left window). You can select any of the patches in the right column to load them individually, but make sure you've highlighted a slot in the SoundBlock display that is blank or you will over-write the current loaded patch.
Q: How do I unload all the other multis (except the selected one) in a SoundBlock to conserve RAM?
A: Click on the "Global" tab and then select "Delete All From Memory Except Current Multi". The selected Multi will remain and the rest will be cleared from RAM.
Q: How do I unload an entire SoundBlock from memory?
A: Click on the "Global" tab and then select "Delete All (Entire SoundBlock) from Memory".
Q: Do you offer returns on Satellite Pro?
A: No. We treat Satellite Pro like opened software once downloaded. If you have not yet downloaded it we will gladly return your money. We highly suggest you download the free version of Satellite and the Ignition SoundBlock before you purchase anything from the site to make sure everything works as expected.
Q: Where can I get Tech Support for Samplebase and Satellite?
A: Tech support is offered free of charge from the Samplebase website by various means. If you are a SatelliteFree user, you are welcome to utilize our support forum, or check out our knowledge-base for common issues. SatellitePro users have priority support using our online ticketing system, where they can receive help from one of our qualified support team members.
Q: Can I make a feature request for Satellite?
A: Absolutely! Your feedback is much appreciated. Please leave us your recommendations in our forum's Wish List, here.
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Q: What is a SoundBlock?
A: SoundBlocks contain high quality audio loops, multisampled instruments, sliced (REX'd) loops, and one-shots. They load exclusively into the Satellite™ player. Unlike most other sample formats, SoundBlocks do not use pointer files and folders. Each SoundBlock is a self-contained "block" of audio, MIDI data, effects and filter settings, key and tempo information, LFO, ADSTR envelope settings, images, comments, and MIDI controller assignments. When not loaded into Satellite, SoundBlocks are up to half the size of the original materials found inside it. Our proprietary lossless compression gives you the benefit of quick downloads, small storage requirements, and excellent manageability that is perfect for most forms of internal and external storage.
Q: How do I buy SoundBlocks?
A: All you have to do is browse the site, listen to demos, and add the SoundBlocks you like to the shopping cart. Then click on the Checkout button in your cart to complete your order. We accept Visa, Mastercard, American Express and PayPal.
Q: How do I download the SoundBlocks I purchased?
A: You will receive an email containing a link to download your purchased SoundBlocks, usually within five minutes of placing your order (or up to an hour for larger orders). You will have 48 hours to download your SoundBlocks before your download link expires. However, you may visit your "My Account" page at any time and request another download link to be sent to your email address, automatically. After downloading, your SoundBlocks will be wrapped in a compressed Zip file on your computer's hard drive. After uncompressing them, launch Satellite and then click the Load button to find and load your new SoundBlocks.
Q: What am I allowed to do with my SoundBlocks?
A: Make music! For detailed information on licensing, please click here.
Q: Will SoundBlocks load into any other sampler?
A: No. This is actually a good thing. We know that, thanks to Satellite, our SoundBlocks will sound just the way they were meant to. You never need to worry about the integrity of the original production across various sampler platforms. This is how Samplebase provides a consistent user experience and great programming with every SoundBlock on the site.
Q: Can I mix and match SoundBlocks in Satellite?
A: Absolutely! The trick is in Satellite's Browse screen. See "How do I load in Patches or Multis from other SoundBlocks and use them together?" under "Satellite FAQ" for instructions.
Q: If I lose a SoundBlock, can I re-download it?
A: Absolutely! Simply visit your "My Account" page and find the SoundBlock listed under your credentials and then click "Request Download Link". You'll be sent a download link within minutes to your registered email address.
Q: Do you offer returns on your SoundBlocks?
A: No. We treat SoundBlocks like opened software once downloaded. If you have not yet downloaded it we will gladly return your money. We highly suggest you download the free version of Satellite and the Ignition SoundBlock before you purchase anything from the site to make sure everything works as expected.
Q: Can I make a request for a SoundBlock?
A: Absolutely! We'd love to hear what you'd like to see on Samplebase so please don't hesitate to send us an email using our online feedback form, here. You may re-download your purchased SoundBlocks as many times as you like!
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