I want a nice pop in my explosion sounds, especially distant. I want to feel the "P" and I want to hear/feel massive release of energy/air. But most videos of explosion sounds that I have watched have a loud annoying hollow "BOOOM". I don't feel the B... It doesn't sound like something compressed bursting and releasing energy. Most burps I hear have more pop sounds to them than explosions sound effects that I find online, I dont know.

Here is how my quest went to find good pop explosion sound:

1) First I search for fireworks videos and got few nice results, but most of them sound like loud noisy "PAAAAHHHH", or noisy "BOOM" I can hardly feel the "P" or "B"

2) Second I search for distant firework/explosion sounds. These tend to have more of a pop to them than most close range ones. Some of them I manage to hear an actual pop. (Especially in real life). But most of them online still sound like tiny "Ticks" and "Clicks".

3) I search for good quality burp sound effect with a lot of pop in them. I use my newbie skills to try and analyze the sound waves in audacity but still I am not getting anything.

ANSWER I AM SEEKING: I want to learn how to create a perfect short pop sounding explosion in Audacity, OR understand what makes me feel the deep powerful "B" or "P" with a pop explosion. I want to feel like air/energy is being released from something extremely compressed/tight... or some deep actual powerful force is being released

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    A perfect explosion sound does not have a pop like you describe, unless it is very small. So you may need to superimpose a real explosion sound with a pop. – Rory Alsop Jul 18 '17 at 9:26
  • Maybe it doesn't have a pop, but I want to at least feel the "P" or "B" thump against my ears. I recently discover something called impluse-noise (noise which includes unwanted, almost instantaneous sharp sounds (like clicks and pops)), and they say it is usually heard during explosions? But I hear none of these in explosion effect videos, how do I get them? – Girlbackshot Jul 19 '17 at 3:02

What you are looking for doesn't really make sense. The pop of something like a balloon is because of a high change in pressure with no real power behind it, so it isn't sustained. It makes a very short duration pressure increase and then things go back to normal.

An explosion has much more power behind it and produces a longer pressure wave which is why it has more of a boom sound to it (plus the reverberations that are made by the pressure wave bouncing off things.)

What it sounds like you are looking for isn't what an explosion sounds like, so your best bet is probably to combine the sound of an explosion with the sound of something like a balloon popping to get the sound you are describing, or possibly record popcorn and try to combine that in.

You might also have luck with frequency shifting an explosion.

  • So you are saying in a real explosion I would not feel the "P" or "B" thump against my ears? Most explosion sounds I find are just a long rumbly booooooom which are noisy and low quality. Look at this youtube.com/watch?v=0FaSDt94cEY (disliked by me), compared to this youtube.com/watch?v=6wlFgl37zfI (much better, but still not perfect) – Girlbackshot Jul 19 '17 at 2:58

As mentioned, combining sounds is probably the best way to get the result you want. You could layer in a bass drum with a hard thump, you should be able to blend it so it's indistinguishable from the rest of the explosion. You could also try something like a pitched-down basketball bounce.

Additionally, boosting EQ a bit at around 60 Hz can bring out the thump a bit more.

  • ill try this and see if i get better results – Girlbackshot Jul 19 '17 at 2:59

Everything depends on the quality of the recording, as well as the conditions present during the recording. The reason Watson's explosions sound so powerful is because he and his team took the time to choose the proper microphones, place them at the proper distances, and select the correct caliber of ordinance -- so that the resulting explosion would sound great!

Now, of course, not everyone has the resources to coordinate a recording session of that scale. But you can see the processes at work and try to recreate some of that in your own recordings. The ordinances don't have to necessarily be that large or destructive - I've had great luck recording off-the-shelf fireworks, but so much depends on the choice of microphone(s) and the environment in which you explode stuff (a firework blowing up in a room may not sound as dramatic as one that explodes in a parking lot or a small canyon).

I encourage you to get out of the studio, grab a mic and a recorder, find a friend and go out and record stuff! You'll learn a lot and hopefully get some very usuable recordings at the same time. Just be sure to exercise extreme caution at all times.


I always have to add various layers of diferents explosions, and even sometimes i add a gunshot, to get what i want for the sound on a particular explosion in a promo or even a tv show.

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