This page will list real instruments that are available in “soundfont” (sf2 or sfz) and – of cause – free.
You can find Instruments as own VSTi here
The New Horizon Orchestra piano and percussion.
The Steinway is just amazing, the Yamaha is also very good and the percussion too!
If I see this is hosted again, I will add the link!
The “small” (~3GB) community library is free! They provide is as sfz (and other.)
The other stuff they have is either already an own VST or sometimes you can even get the raw samplepack for creating own patches.
Ah, the early internet. This french site has some history as it already started 2005 (and by the looks has never changed the design). This is nothing bad at all – in fact in this case it is authentic:
They provide mostly historical instruments like harpsichords sampled form 17th and 18th century instruments, a house organ (1988) and an accordion.
The grandfather’s clock gives you authentic “ticktock” and the strokes.
All these instruments come as compressed sf2, you will need the sfark decompressor by melodymachine (link can be found below each download).
Yeah well. A more or less complete orchestra for free. (sfz)
Karoryfer provides a big collection of different instruments and effects. Most of them are really good. Especially the Pastabass (comes in different “flavours”), the emilyguitar, acoustic double bass (meatbass) and much more.
The synthesizer have some really nice sounds, too.
You should definitely check this one out.
Ethnical and weird stuff. Some interesting sounds!
More orchestra! (sf2)
These are moslty guitars, bass’, banjo and alike. Acoustic and electric (the latter are rather rare and hard to find)
A good collection of very diverse soundfonts. Not hosted by them! I already mentioned some of these above.