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Freesound.org seems to be the largest and most reliable source of unprocessed field recordings (with a good share of pitch-shifted monster sounds too). I struggle to find alternatives of comparable size and quality.

What other databases exist? (I am especially interested in free/open databases with CC licenses, that may be used for R&D, rather than commercial ends)

  • 1
    You seemed to have answered your own question very well. – user18060 May 9 '16 at 3:51
  • I've been appending my findings since originally posting the question. I'm hoping others will chime in or comment on what I found so far. Any thoughts? – yunque May 9 '16 at 9:49
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here's another one:

freeSFX

+ Easy to navigate thematic organization

+ Curated generally useful incidental sounds

+ Free commercial use, provided not main focus (full license)

- relatively small collection (a couple of thousand sounds in my estimation)

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This is a Community Wiki answer, feel free to add your finds...

Field Recording Databases

Freesound >> http://freesound.org/ (added by yunque)

+ Search by license, format, bitrate, sample rate, tags, etc.

+ Open project, user-based (can search similar sounds recorded by the same person).

- Variable quality.


British Library Sounds Maps >> http://sounds.bl.uk/sound-maps/ (added by yunque)

+ Huge!

- Search by keyword or category only.

- No info about bitrate, etc.

- Mostly complex environments, not isolated noises.


findsounds >> http://www.findsounds.com/ (added by yunque)

+ Search by format, bitrate, sample rate.

- Links to other websites, license info not obvious.


SoundBible >> http://soundbible.com/ (added by yunque)

+ License info.

- Search by filename only.


Geluid van Nederland >> http://www.geluidvannederland.nl/ (added by yunque)

+ CC 3.0 entirely

- Search by tag only.


Macaulay Library >> http://macaulaylibrary.org/ (added by yunque)

+ Huge!

- $ :[


Nature Sounds . ca >> http://nature-downloads.naturesounds.ca/ (added by yunque)

+ Outdoors

- mp3 only


freeSFX >> http://www.freesfx.co.uk/ (added by joseem)

+ Easy to navigate thematic organization

+ Curated generally useful incidental sounds

+ Free commercial use, provided not main focus (full license)

- relatively small collection (a couple of thousand sounds in my estimation)

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