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Filmmaking / Video Editing

Best Cinematic Sound Effects (SFX) Libraries | Tried & Tested

best sfx

We tried and tested so many Sound Effects (SFX) packs to see if they really stand up to their value. Below is our chosen best SFX packs that were were genuinely happy with and felt you would need in your editing library.

Sound effects are sometimes unnoticed, but are vital to exploiting emotions, creating a strong viewing experience and keeping the audience engaged within the content. Regardless of audio effects or high-quality effects, these are the best 4 cinematic SFX packs. After countless reviews and multiple tests, we concluded these suit the Filmmaker best.

We found that many SFX on the market were quite terrible and don’t even want to mention them. Unfortunately there seems to be a lot of copyright issues, companies claiming to have “Thousands” of SFX in a huge bundle, but they are actually just copied from other established locations in a super messy way.

1. Evince | Duende Sounds

This final library is produced by Duende Sounds, it’s called ‘Evince’. This boasts over 400 melodies and SFX that are easily used with the drag and drop system. This pack is specifically produced for filmmakers, this pack includes regular free updates and has proved to be a really good investment that isn’t too expensive.

This is a very unique package that features soundtracks, sound signatures and ambiance sounds. The reason this package is so popular is due to its variety, the variations of cinematic SFX and a new blend of Whooshes have shown a great addition to any production. This is the best value for money investment on our list and they also have a really good set of support staff which is a nice bonus! To really make a difference to your work, investing in a pack like this will be worthwhile.

evince homepage

Positive

  • SFX are really high quality
  • Very good whooshes 
  • It’s great value, top quality sound effects with a great variety
  • Great support

Negative

  • None
Sound Quality96000khz
Price$40
Sound FormatWAV
CategoriesComposition (Dramatic, Hybrid Epic, Inspiring, Intimacy, Sentimental, The Chase, The Time, Together), Evince SFX (Ambiance, Hits, Risers, Rhythmic SFX, Signatures, Whooshes).
WhooshesSub, Windy, Paper, Deep, Dark, Bright, Tonal. Lots of variety and very usable. Some of our favorite Whooshes.
evince best sfx specs

2. Division Cinematic Sound Effects | Bounce Color

First on the list is the Division Sound Effects Library, created by Bounce Color. This package has been created with filmmakers in mind, with a unique twist with regular updates.

This package features high quality 96000khz audio files and boasts that there’s zero fluff or useless SFX included. Every Sound Effect has a purpose.

The sound effects are compatible with all types of editing software and are directed at high quality SFX. The Division pack is a perfect example of high quality, in small quantities whereby all the most important sounds are included within the pack.

division bounce color sfx library

Positive

  • SFX are really high quality and used worldwide 
  • 100% useful sounds, no fluff – all sounds have a purpose
  • Created by industry professionals

Negative

  • Doesn’t have scores, but focuses more on high quality crucial SFX
Sound Quality96000khz
Price$51
Sound FormatWAV & MP3
CategoriesAtmospheric, Bass Hits, Bass Rumbles, Cinematic Risers, Tonal Accents, Whooshes
WhooshesVery nice sub whooshes. Short, Long, Light, Sub, Electrical, Haunting and Windy
division categories

3. Boom Library

Boom Library have quite an extensive list of SFX ranging from car sounds all the way to cinematic scores. Trusted by YouTuber Hillier Smith who used their library to recreate a Fast & Furious scene.

Based in Germany, the company has been creating SFX since 2010, and clearly know what they’re doing. They don’t only just have SFX libraries, they do software plugins that allow you to create your own SFX.

One thing I love about their SFX is that they have ‘tags’ in the files, so if you’re searching for specific keywords for the right SFX, it’s much easier to find. All their SFX are delivered in top quality 96000hz too, the best quality.

boom sfx library
Sound Quality96000khz
PricePricey
Sound FormatWAV & MP3
CategoriesHuge range
WhooshesGot a lot of whooshes available

4. Motion Pulse | Video Copilot 

Motion Pulse is a large collection of tools from Video Copilot, which includes a huge variety from Machine, Organic, Velocity, Impact and Signal. Altogether there are over 2000 effects, all in HD and fully mastered. You can also mix and match across the whole library to create your own combinations.

This package is full of well made transitions and high-quality SFX, with loads of choice, but also a very well priced package. It is extremely easy to use, with a simple drag and drop system and easy compatible with a wide range of platforms. All that is needed for this package is to go through all the sounds and select the ones that will be of use, as there are many sounds here that are specific to a certain genre.

motion pulse sfx libraries

Positive

  • SFX are high quality
  • Great sounds that are very good for transitions and action 
  • A lot of choice but needs filtering the good stuff
  • Reasonable price 

Negative

  • Expensive for the bundle, but a lot of choice
  • Filled with horror sounds unlikely to use unless making a horror film
Sound Quality96000khz
Price$51
Sound FormatWAV & MP3
CategoriesImpact (Bass Drops, Crashes, Debris, Distortion Wave, Dramatic Hits, Metal Slicers, Quick Impacts, Slams, Sonic Pulse, Sub-sonic Impacts, Trailer Hits), Machine (Attachments, Gear Up, Gears & Cranks, Locked Down, Metal Blades, Micro Madness, Mini Bots, Pistons, Robotic), Organic (Abstract, Air Pressure, Disintegration, Lifeforms, Liquids, Meat Slices, Medical, Splashes, Stress, Wind), Signal (Analog FX, Beeps, Distorted Signals, Electrical, Glitches, Noise, Pulses, Record, Transmission), Velocity (Atmospheric, Doppler FX, Drones, Epic Swishes, Gleams, Power Downs, Power Whooshes, Reverse FX, Risers, Space, Spin FX, Waves).
WhooshesAction style (car/jet flybys) and trailer whooshes (titles)
amazing sfx by video copilot motionpulse

5. Anticipation | Len Distortions

Lens Distortions have created a brand new pack of high-quality cinematic sound effects, featuring the very best and essential and most needed SFX. One of the smaller packs for sale is ‘Anticipation’; this pack contains 80 files full of 96khz audio effects, which can regularly be used in four variations to find that perfect sound for any film. However, this pack is rather expensive. For the price there is a wide range of high-quality features throughout this library; including unique Whooshes that are combined to reach the right sounds for any audience.

Positive

  • SFX are really high quality 
  • Beautiful composition of sounds 
  • Created by industry professionals 
  • Unique and great whooshes 

Negative

  • Expensive
  • Pack isn’t big for the price
  • Filled with lots of sounds rather than unique sounds
  • Can buy multiple packs for the same price as this one
Sound Quality96000khz
Price$149
Sound FormatWAV & MP3
CategoriesRisers, Hits, Whooshes, Moments, Atmospheres. Each category has a different variation of sound – Standard, Distortion, Space and Tube
WhooshesBig variety, usable in many types of films. Sub, windy, subtle and powerful. Also unique city timelapse style sounds which are amazing and unique

Where can I get Free SFX?

There are quite a lot of free SFX on the market, but most of them are rubbish if I’m honest. If you’re looking for free SFX then it’s best to get the sample packs from the companies above. I will list below some of the best free SFX that I know of.

Best subscription service for Sound Effects (SFX)

Subscription services are a great place to get individual sound effects. But I wouldn’t recommend them for your whole library. Take a look at some of the best SFX subscriptions.

Soundstripe

Soundstripe have created a wonderful platform for music and SFX. I find them on par with Artlist in terms of availability. Soundstripe use a yearly cost strategy, so you pay a subscription per year.

soundstripe home

Artlist

Artlist are similar to Soundstripe in terms of platform. Featuring a wide selection of SFX for a yearly cost.

artlist.io homepage

Pond5

Pond5 have been established for many years now. It’s one of the main places I used to go to for individual SFX. There is a lot of rubbish on there, but it has a great platform for searching for a specific sound effect. It runs smoothly without lagging.

pond5 sfx libraries

Summary

There you have it, the best cinematic SFX libraries I’ve used, and I’ve used a lot! These were always my favourite to go to.

If you’re interested in finding free SFX, go take a look.

About Author

Will is a professional Filmmaker/Video Editor from the Isle of Man, UK. He also is an E-Commerce expert using Shopify/Wordpress & is experienced in SEO.

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