I've been looking into the benefits of white/ambient noise on studying lately, and I think it's best to put on some cafe, busy library, study place ambient noise (with people talking in the background). I've been looking for audio tracks of this kind. So far I've found some that are simply "sound effects", which last < 1 minute. But what I really want is an audio track that plays for several hours with no looping.

I've searched several places but haven't found anything like that.
Is there some open data collection of ambient background noise that I described?

  • (Based on a question from geoff on Software Recommendations.)
    – unor
    Commented Apr 23, 2014 at 11:49
  • There are smartphone apps that will generate white noise in real time. We use such an app to put our baby to sleep in public place with a non-ideal sound environment. I am not certain copyright attributes the videos have, but on YouTube, I've watched "ambient" soundtracks such as fireplaces, rain, white noise, etc. Some go on for 10 hours.
    – Sun
    Commented Apr 23, 2014 at 22:05
  • @SunWKim : what you're describing is sometimes called 'Slow TV'.
    – Joe
    Commented Apr 25, 2014 at 19:25

2 Answers 2


nature sounds offers kitchen audio...which may not be close enough. it allows for exporting 30min file

ok. i can't find anything longer than a few minutes. check out some of the results in the open audio community on archive.org:

  • 1
    Coffitivity data is not open. Could you please develop your freesounds.org answer?
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Commented Apr 23, 2014 at 6:22
  • 1
    I went, and all I could find is ~5 sound files that are just a few seconds long, very far from the "several hours with no looping" requirement of the question.
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Commented Apr 23, 2014 at 6:41
  • 2
    @albert I think it's fair to ask to expand the answer, based on meta.stackexchange.com/q/8231/254520
    – philshem
    Commented Apr 23, 2014 at 9:30
  • indeed, tis fair...also, in the time it took you to write that comment, you could have searched it ;)
    – albert
    Commented Apr 25, 2014 at 2:33
  • that's 5 minutes, not 5 hours.
    – Joe
    Commented Apr 25, 2014 at 19:22

Cafe, library etc are known in the audio research communities as "scenes". Automatically classifying based on the audio from which scene it is from is known as "Acoustic Scene Classification". So those are good keywords when searching for this.

This task has been recurring at the DCASE Machine Learning challenge. So you can find several datasets there:

The 2019 edition have classes such as:

    Airport - airport
    Indoor shopping mall - shopping_mall
    Metro station - metro_station
    Pedestrian street - street_pedestrian
    Public square - public_square
    Street with medium level of traffic - street_traffic
    Travelling by a tram - tram
    Travelling by a bus - bus
    Travelling by an underground metro - metro
    Urban park - park

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