The great thing about audio is that it takes your video and makes it totally amazing. If you want to add production value to your video, you need to make sure the audio is excellent. Read my in depth article about recording good audio.
Recording good audio can be a bit expensive. You need an audio recorder, a microphone (most digital recorders come with poor mics) and headphones for monitoring. A small setup can run you a couple hundred dollars! Luckily a ton of people have done the work for you by recording sounds, and sharing them for free.
Before we get started, you should know that you can install plugins/apps/extensions/whatever you call them on your web browser that allow you to download audio and video files that you access on websites. The particular plugins I use on Firefox are NetVidoHunter and FlashGot. Between these to plugins I can download practically and video or music file that I encounter on the internet. I am sure there are equivalent plugins for Chrome and Safari. What does this mean? It means that technically you can download lots of audio without registering or paying for it. I should point out that you should not use this trick on websites that charge money for their sounds because that would be stealing!
Without further ado, there are four websites that you absolutely should use:
Without question, there is one website that is the king of free high quality audio. I almost exclusively use freesound.org because I can usually find every single sound that I need. And if I can’t find a sound on freesound.org it probably means I will not be able to find it on any other website (in which case I go out and record it myself). freesound.org has the most clear and professional looking site of the bunch. Its simple to use, and in order to download the free sounds you need to register (free). If I were you, I would quit reading this article right now, and go listen to the high quality stuff on freesound.org.
If you want free music this is your spot. FMA has tons of genres, tons of artists, tons of everything. All the music on this site is free as long as you use it the way the author wants you to use it (maybe they want credit, or don’t want it used in commercial work, etc…). You won’t find much on FMA in terms of commercial sound, it’s pretty much all independent. I use this website second most frequently after freesound.org.
Soundcloud has tons of music and sound effects. Unlike freesound, not everything is free to use. You need to browse groups that specialize in royalty free sounds. This is a great site if you need royalty free or creative commons music (freesound.org is better for sound effects and field recordings). If you find a song that may or may not be free, just contact the artist.
Okay, I know this article is titled “Free Sound etc…” but I have to squeeze in soundsnap.com because in my opinion it is the second best website for downloading sounds. It is easy to navigate, has tons of sounds, and is basically a paid alternative to freesound.org. You will find thousands of sounds on this website, and if you couldn’t find the perfect sound on freesound.org maybe it is worth paying a little for a sound on soundsnap.com. The prices are fairly cheap as far as paid sounds go; you can buy 5 sounds for $9, which is not bad if you need a particular sound that cannot be found on freesound.org.
mobygratis.com: Get Free Commercial Music for Your Film
And here is one last website. Do you want free Music from the world renowned Moby? Well then, just head on over to mobygratis.com and download free music that he has created. You are free to use this music for noncommercial ventures.
No Need For Anymore Free Music or Sound Effects Websites
That’s it. No need for more. These five website have everything you need. Now go. Go download all the music and sound files your hard drive can fit.