Music Trackers

8 Best Free and Open Source Music Trackers

Linux is an attractive platform for professional audio production. It is an extremely stable operating system that has good support for audio hardware. Using a Linux machine as the focus of your recording setup opens a world of possibilities for an affordable price.

A music tracker (short version tracker) is a type of music sequencer software for creating music. The music is represented as discrete musical notes positioned in several channels at discrete chronological positions on a vertical timeline.

A music tracker’s user interface is usually number based. Notes, parameter changes, effects and other commands are entered with the keyboard into a grid of fixed time slots as codes consisting of letters, numbers and hexadecimal digits. Separate patterns have independent timelines; a complete song consists of a master list of repeated patterns.

Here’s our verdict on the best music trackers captured in one of our legendary ratings chart. All of the software is free and open source.

Ratings chart

Let’s explore the 8 music trackers. For each title we have compiled its own portal page, a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, a screenshot of the software in action together with links to relevant resources.

Music Trackers
MilkyTrackerFT2 compatible music tracker
FamiStudioNES music editor
FurnaceMulti-system chiptune tracker
RadiumMusic editor sporting a sleek interface billed as a next generation tracker
Schism TrackerReimplementation of Impulse Tracker
OpenMPTAudio module tracker (needs Wine to run)
klystrackTracker for making C64/NES/Amiga-style chiptunes
BassoonTrackerBrowser-based old-school Amiga music tracker

This article has been revamped in line with our recent announcement.

Best Free and Open Source SoftwareRead our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.

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