Best Torrent Sites [2020 List]
Today, we are going to talk about a subject other than VPNs. However, rest assured: it is very closely related to our usual topic! With that in mind, let’s get going.
Sooner or later, every modern Internet user comes across the necessity to download a file, be it a book, a movie, or anything else, from a torrent website. The main reason for the overwhelming popularity of such sites is how fast they are ⎼ anyone who has tried downloading a several-gigabyte file not via P2P technology can attest to that.
So the biggest distinguishing features of torrenting sites are the following: down because it is impossible to delete the file from the computers of all the participants.
- They are fast.
- They are run by users.
- They are not inherently dangerous or illegal ⎼ but still require a great deal of cautiousness when used.
But why is that?
One of the main advantages of torrents ⎼ that anyone can share a file they want on a specific site ⎼ is also a factor that can pose a certain danger. It is easy to stumble upon a malware-ridden file shared by hackers or trolls, especially for a beginner user.
Naturally, when a netizen downloads such a file, their system can and will be compromised.
To avoid such incidents, it is best to keep to trusted and reputable torrent sites. How can you tell them apart from malicious ones?
Luckily, it’s very easy. You just need to read our list of best torrent shares for 2020!
With this quick nav, you can skip right ahead to the section you want to read the most:
- A brief introduction to torrenting
- 10 best torrent sites for 2020
- Precautions to take when torrenting
What makes torrenting so convenient and easy is P2P or peer-to-peer technology. Today. It’s hard to even imagine file sharing without it.
It is called peer-to-peer thanks to its decentralization: there are no privileged users in such a network as well as no moderators. It contributes to the fact that pretty much anything can be downloaded from a torrent website, which sometimes leads to legal trouble (but more on that later).
Unlike a regular download from any other site, where you connect to a server and load a file from it, in a P2P network, you both download and upload parts of the file. The same is true for everybody who participates in sharing.
These two processes are simultaneous so you share what you just downloaded with other people while downloading other bits of the file. It greatly improves the speed of file sharing and makes it more difficult for anyone to shut it down because it is impossible to delete the file from the computers of all the participants.
Technicalities aside, what concerns average users more than anything else is the legality of torrents. Are these sites and P2P technology itself legal?
The short answer is yes, they are. Peer-to-peer is simply a technology used for file sharing and there are plenty of files that are legal to share: for example, movies, books, and music that are in the public domain.
However, we can’t deny that for many people, torrenting is practically synonymous with piracy. And, to be frank, there is a good reason for that even though such an opinion is not exactly right.
Due to the speeds and largely uncontrolled nature of this technology, it’s widely used to share copyrighted content without paying the rights holders. This fact can cause certain distress even to people who don’t use torrenting for any illegal purposes. We’ll talk about it as well as why it is highly recommended to use a VPN for torrenting in one of the following chapters of this article.
One more thing you should know about torrenting is that you need a torrent client to download and manage files. It is an app that you need to install on your system. The most popular one, however, is qBitTorrent. It is free, works on pretty much every operating system and supports all the torrent sites.
Which brings us to…
Most experienced internet users have their preferences already set when it comes to torrent trackers. However, for people who just start to use P2P or want to expand their awareness about this technology and file sharing in general, the following list will be indispensable.
It is also worth noting that popular torrent sites can often go down because of various legal issues so it’s good to have a hefty list of alternatives available for such a scenario.
So in this section I’m going to give you a nice list of working torrent trackers that will suit all your needs.
Without further ado, let’s get into it!
|Important warning: Please be aware that VPN-Review does not condone or encourage any illegal activities using P2P or other technologies. Use the information in the article in accordance with your country’s laws and at your own discretion.|
1. The Pirate Bay
For many netizens, this website is synonymous with torrenting itself. Maintained by the Swedish Pirate Party, thepiratebay.org is the largest tracker out there.
Its functionality allows you to search for specific torrents as well as browse files by category (such as music, movies, software, etc.) as well as by their upload date and popularity. You can also use magnet links or download torrent files to your computer first. Another useful feature is that TPB gives a special icon to the trusted uploaders:
It’s recommended to choose torrents that have it to decrease the possibility of getting malware or simply wasting your time on downloading a poor quality file.
Unfortunately, its popularity and firm stance on copyright issues have made The Pirate Bay a frequent target of attacks carried out with the help of legal and technological means. Therefore, this site often experiences shutdowns and cannot be accessed.
|Useful information: Luckily, even if the main domain is down, it doesn’t mean you cannot use this torrent tracker. Not only are there numerous alternatives to it (which you will find further in this review) but also there are mirrors of TPB itself. To quickly view which ones are up, just go to this address. There, you are almost guaranteed to find a working proxy of the tracker!|
Katcr.co is a site that somewhat rides the coattails of another one that had enormous popularity back in the 2010s. However, that one ⎼ KickassTorrents ⎼ was shut down permanently by the governmental organizations in 2016 so we can assume that the name of its replacement is a kind of reference to that fact.
Although it cannot boast quite the same level of user activity its predecessor once had, there are still enough people using katcr.co to provide fast download speeds on many torrent files.
Among the features of this tracker are search by name and by the categories of the file. For example, you can considerably narrow your search by limiting it to movie torrents of a certain sub-category:
Additionally, you can sort movies by genre as well if you have something specific in mind or just want to find a film similar to something you have already watched:
Of course, it’s not only cinema torrents that have this amount of fine-tuning. As for video games, you can also sort them by the platform they are meant for:
All in all, this tracker provides some very nice search options that are sure to make finding anything you need simple.
3. Tamil Rockers
Bollywood movies are not everybody’s cup of tea. Despite that, it’s impossible to deny the fact that their fanbase is absolutely huge: many Indian films show great results not only in India but also in terms of the worldwide box office.
One way or another, tamilrockers.ws is the best torrenting site for those who do love Bollywood. There, one can find movies in Tamil, Telugu, and Hindi if it is available in those languages. That’s not to say, however, that there aren’t any English versions: you can find them as well, though they are a bit less prevalent here.
Compared to many other torrent sites, Tamil Rockers has a bit of a disadvantage: it’s not very easy to find a movie you want on it because of how the website itself is made. Unlike, say, TPB, it lists all the torrents as separate topics on its forums, which may be slightly inconvenient for those who are used to a different system.
Advice: Use the Quick Navigation button on the website to make your searches easier:
It opens up a menu that will help you immensely:
Another thing to mention is that Tamil Rockers is blocked in India. While this can be bypassed by using mirrors, a more failsafe way to get access to the site is by using a VPN.
1337x is another great source for your torrenting needs. Fun fact: its name stands for “leet” or “elite” spelled with the so-called “leet speak” which is a way to spell words with symbols other than letters for humorous effect. How humorous it is, exactly, depends on the recipient.
Anyway, 1337x has earned its renown not by joking around. It is a powerful website with tons of content that has a comprehensive search and categorization system.
The design on this website is extremely intuitive and if I judged torrent trackers based solely on how convenient they are to use, 1337x would have gotten a straight A+ from me. Just take a look at how many general categories it provides:
But that’s far from it. There are also categories for new episodes of TV shows, documentaries, etc.
Another nice feature is that 1337x has a clear set of rules for uploaders (like on other sites, you need to sign up to upload; however, you can download files as a guest) which is readily available from the main page. Not all torrent trackers are so transparent with their policies and sometimes, you have to do some digging to find out about the rules.
LimeTorrents is yet another service that is easy to use and has a lot of content. The figures are quite astonishing, as you can see in the following picture:
This picture also gives you an idea of how well organized that content is. As you can see, games and applications files are pretty well divided into categories so that you can take a look at everything that interests you in one place. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said about movies, books, TV series, and music torrents so you’ll have to have a more precise idea of what you want to watch, read, or listen to.
LimeTorrents has a few useful quality-of-life additions. For instance, it shows how “healthy” any particular file is. What health means in this case is the ratio between seeders and leechers: the more there are of the former and the fewer of the latter, the healthier the torrent is.
Of course, you can tell it yourself by looking at the seeders and leechers numbers but it’s still nice to have a little bit of visual representation.
What’s also interesting is how LimeTorrents attempts to stay on the good side of the rights holders. As is specified in its FAQ section, the website doesn’t host any copyrighted files but only information about torrents which are stored on users’ machines. Moreover, the service offers to remove any such information if the rights holders think it is posted in violation of their copyright.
While it’s absolutely possible to find many anime torrents on the sites mentioned above, this one is the one every otaku needs to bookmark. Nyaa is a great repository for all your anime and manga needs!
What distinguishes this website among all others is how convenient it is to search for the titles that interest you. For example, the list of categories looks like this:
As you can see, it covers a lot of options in terms of content type, translation, quality, etc.
But where some other torrent sites stop at enabling search by categories, Nyaa goes one step further. There are also filters that allow you to search only for the torrents added by trusted users or exclude remakes from your search results:
Interestingly enough, Nyaa lets you upload your torrent file information even if you are not logged in:
It is a very rare thing on torrent trackers in 2020 and actually, for a good reason. The requirement to register to be able to upload files makes it harder for spammers or trolls to upload fake torrents.
Thus, it is advisable to always sort the files you’re searching for by a trusted uploader to prevent any trouble.
No bonus points for guessing what this site’s main speciality is! Indeed, GamesTorrents is where you come for video games ⎼ and whether it is a new release or a cult classic from the 90s doesn’t matter because youэre going to find what you’re looking for regardless.
The only problem with the site’s layout is that it is in Spanish so if you don’t speak it, browsing may be somewhat inconvenient. However, it’s not a huge issue since you can automatically translate it into English in Google Chrome.
What you have on GameTorrents is a lot of customizable search options:
You can select game torrents of a specific genre, platform, installer format, region, language, or even the group that did the crack for the game. That’s especially useful because almost every gamer has some preference in that due to compatibility.
Another slight issue with this tracker is that there is no easy way to see how many seeders or leechers there are on any given torrent. Though I can attest that most of the time, there were enough for a speedy download, the inability to see the numbers before you start your file sharing is pretty baffling.
If you look for torrent sites that provide 100% legal content, eTree.org is a great choice for you. There, you can find torrent files of live recordings of concerts. The best thing about it is that the artists whose records are shared that way all give their consent.
This practice is known as trade friendliness. The definitions of it can vary but the bottom line is that those artists are fine with at least fan recordings of their performances being shared for free.
You might think that such a thing would only be allowed by smaller, indie bands but that is not quite correct. Though most bands you’ll find on eTree are indeed more niche, there are also very popular ones as well. Arguably, the most renowned example of trade-friendly artists is Grateful Dead.
In terms of functionality, this tracker is very convenient. You can look for a song or album and specify which artist your results should be limited to:
By default, eTree doesn’t show music torrents with no seeders in search results. However, if you want to reseed some files you have downloaded and that have no one seeding them, you can enable this option:
Archive.org is a truly wondrous source of information. It contains literally millions of books, games, software, TV programs, and other titles. And one of the best things about it which makes this website eligible for our list is that there is a torrenting section on it!
It’s true that this is not a traditional torrent website. For example, you are unlikely to find the latest gaming release or the most up-to-date episode of your favorite show there. However, if you are into history, archive.org is a real treat. You can find books, documents, and recordings in many languages - and torrent any of them.
There is also a great collection of movies including silent films if that’s what you fancy:
However, you should be aware that not all content on the platform is entirely family-friendly so some degree of viewer discretion is definitely advised.
In terms of download speed, I have nothing but good things to say about archive.org. No matter what file I checked, there were always enough seeders to provide me with fast speeds:
All in all, this service is incredibly fun to just get lost in and see how many times you will say, “I didn’t know I was interested in this!”
No list of torrenting sites would be full without mentioning torrents.io. While it doesn’t host any torrent information itself, it acts as a combined search engine for numerous other trackers instead. So, by using it, you can get results from several sites at once. Convenient, isn’t it?
To make the things even more convenient, torrents.io provides a list of categories to which different websites fall:
And if you, for instance, go to the Sports category, you will be given this list of sites that may be of interest to you:
As you can see, a lot of them are private, meaning that you have to get an invite to be able to register and use them. However, you have a chance to fix this by proposing more sites to be listed:
This option gives you an email address to send your suggestions to and if they are approved, they will be added to the list.
The search settings here are truly amazing. You get to choose results from what trackers you want to see and have a large selection of sites to add to your personal list:
Despite all of its pluses, torrenting is not without its fair share of minuses. I should delineate the most pressing of them.
First of all, it is the legal concerns related to P2P. As I have mentioned already, due to the abundance of copyrighted content on many torrents websites, this technology is frowned upon by many entities including governments, ISPs, and copyright holders.
Though in all likelihood, you won’t probably get sued for torrenting a movie (and in some countries, that is fully legal as long as you don’t distribute the file), the risk is still present. After all, it isn’t unheard of.
Second of all, even if you are sharing perfectly legal files, your ISP may take notice of the abnormally high bandwidth usage and decide to throttle your speed. The reason for that is simple: to free more bandwidth up for other customers so that their speed can be higher.
And the third danger you may face when torrenting is fake files that can contain malware or, in less extreme cases, just something irrelevant to what you thought you were downloading.
To help you protect yourself against the first two issues, I recommend using a good virtual private network. All the best VPN services are capable of hiding the fact that you are engaging in some P2P activity.
As for the third one, alas, a VPN isn’t going to cut it. A good antivirus should help you more here but it is worth mentioning that, just like with VPNs, a free one is almost always insufficient.
Additionally, it’s recommended to download torrent files shared only by trusted users as those are the least likely to be malicious in nature.
But the most important precaution is to use your common sense. It is always better to spend another five minutes looking for a reliable file than to download it from an untrustworthy resource and then waste five hours fixing the problem it caused.
With that in mind, keep safe and stay tuned for more VPN reviews and articles!