Tunecore Vs CDBaby: What are the Differences?

In today’s contemporary music landscape, it appears that most music distribution platforms such as TuneCore or CD Baby are promoting a similar offering to artists: "free distribution, no royalties fees."

However, beneath this marketing slogan lie distinct features and pricing structures that these platforms don't always explicitly outline.

If you’re contemplating signing up with a music distribution service, understanding the differences between TuneCore and CD Baby is crucial before making a decision. In this article, we’ll juxtapose CD Baby and TuneCore to assist you in determining which platform may be the better fit for your needs.

What is TuneCore?


TuneCore is a digital music distribution platform that enables independent musicians and artists to distribute their music across various online platforms, including major streaming services and digital stores.

Founded in 2005 and headquartered in Brooklyn, New York, TuneCore has become a significant player in the music industry, offering a wide array of services designed to help artists reach a global audience while maintaining full control over their music.

What is CD Baby?


CD Baby is a comprehensive music distribution tool that enables independent musicians and artists to distribute their music both digitally and physically.

Founded in 1998 by Derek Sivers, CD Baby has become one of the most trusted names in the independent music industry, offering a wide range of services to help artists sell their music, manage their royalties, and reach a global audience.

For more detailed information, read our guide on CDBaby Review.

Tunecore Vs CDBaby: Distribution Features

Let's compare Tunecore and CDBaby side by side.

CD Baby

As a pay-per-release music distribution service, CD Baby offers distribution to over 150 online platforms, including major streaming services and digital stores. Additionally, CD Baby has partnerships with Alliance Entertainment, Super D, and Amazon to provide broad physical distribution, including CDs and vinyl records.

CD Baby empowers artists with the choice of selecting the platforms on which they want their music to be available, offering greater control over their distribution channels.


TuneCore operates on a pay-per-year model, allowing artists to pay a single fee to stream an unlimited amount of music on over 150 platforms. Similarly to CD Baby, TuneCore enables artists to choose the specific platforms for their music distribution. Once selected, TuneCore reviews the music and ensures its streaming on the chosen platforms.

One of the notable advantages of TuneCore is the absence of restrictions on the amount of music an artist can release, providing flexibility and freedom in the distribution process.

TuneCore vs. CD Baby: Customer Support


CD Baby

CD Baby offers 24-hour chat support with a virtual agent and live chat with the artist services team, available from 9 am to 4 pm PST Monday to Friday.

Additionally, users can submit requests for assistance with a response time of up to five days. However, there have been complaints from some CD Baby users regarding the responsiveness of their customer support system.


TuneCore provides a comprehensive support system where users can specify the type of assistance needed, whether related to music distribution or publishing royalties.

The support page addresses various potential issues and offers solutions. Additionally, users can expedite the resolution process by providing their UPC code to TuneCore for quicker and more effective support.

Conclusion on Tunecore Vs CDBaby

Both platforms offer valuable tools and services to help independent artists succeed in the music industry.

By considering your specific goals, budget, and needs, you can choose the platform that best aligns with your career aspirations.

Whether you go with TuneCore or CD Baby, you’ll be joining a community of artists who have taken control of their music distribution and are reaching audiences around the world.

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