Tabletop Audio is the premier, advertising free / free-to-use, user supported ambient game audio site on the web. It has been nominated for the prestigious ENnie awards every year since it's launch and to date has won 3 ENnies: The Silver Medal for 'Best Website' in 2015, the Gold Medal for 'Best Website' in 2017, and the Silver Medal for 'Best Free Product' in 2018. Each year millions of tracks are played and downloaded from the site and it is entirely supported by it's users. (Thank You!)
While it was originally developed as a resource for players and GMs of tabletop role-playing games, I have received so many emails from other types of users that I felt it was time to refine this section.
According to you all, Tabletop Audio is for: Role-players, boardgamers, writers, coders, artists, graphic designers, teachers, house-cleaners, lucid dreamers, gym-rats, distance runners, commuters and ANYONE who wants to immerse themselves in the audio-space of one environment, while physically inhabiting another.
On the main page, you will find more than 250 10-minute, situational audio files called ambiences (over 24 hours!). Press play. Listen.
For more control over your audio, try one of the SoundPads
Hi, I'm Tim. I'm a professional composer and sound designer from Brooklyn, NY and I play tabletop RPGs with my kids (
10 and 7 11 and 8 12 and 9 they keep growing don't they?...you get the picture...).
I'm also a musician. I started playing the violin when I was 4 and played classical music in orchestras and chamber groups through college. Post college I played violin and guitar in lots of different bands in Chapel Hill NC and later in NYC. I've done studio and live work with Blondie, Paul Waaktar (A-ha), Eric Ambel (Joan Jett, Del Lords), Susan Cowsill (The Cowsills), Jolene (Sire Records), The Veldt (Stardog/Mercury), Dillon Fence (Mammoth Records), The Lamps (members of The Bangles, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Connells), and Stars of Stage and Screen. During the summer, I coach string quartets at a kids' chamber music day camp.
As any creative professional will tell you, working for clients usually doesn't scratch many creative itches. Tabletop Audio allows me free reign to do whatever I feel like (ars gratia artis!). Also, I really enjoy creating miniature 10 minute films out of sound.
I've found that playing situational audio files - i.e. "you're in a cave!" increases the level of enjoyment, immersion and suspension of disbelief for many gamers. Just as some players like adding miniatures to amp up their games, I enjoy adding some kind of background audio.
Yes! I love working with other people. Send me an email at [email protected] and tell me about your project. I do custom audio for games, escape rooms, installations, audio books, trailers, kickstarter videos, anything that has sound in it.
If your Twitch/Video channel is non-profit, then yes, absolutely, with attribution.
I know a lot of you monetize your videos and here's my basic position: If you're making a little bit of extra money on the side to pay for hosting or bandwidth, buy the occasional game, or purchase refreshments for game night, then I'm fine with you using the 10 minute ambiences in your videos. If you're making more than that, (you decide where this line is drawn) then it doesn't seem unreasonable that we discuss some sort of licensing fee arrangement.
SoundPad was designed for those of you who wanted more control over your sonic environments. Instead of fire-and-forget 10 minute ambiences, each SoundPad is made up of a few dozen sounds, divided into categories. Many of these sounds are designed to loop and are loop enabled when the page is loaded. Additionally, most of the sounds can be layered on top of one another. The music tracks are slightly different in that they can be layered over any of the sounds but only one music track can play at a time.
Each of the over 25 Individual SoundPad's audio content is less than 6MB total so it is bandwidth friendly for those who wish to use it on cellular networks.
SoundPad development is ongoing. There are currently over 900 sounds available. More features and new SoundPads are planned.
YES! You can now use the new Custom SoundPad Tool which lets you mix and match up to
32 36 40 sounds from any of the released SoundPads. There are over 900 sounds to choose from. These custom SoundPads can be saved on your device for quick recall or shared with friends via custom links.
Yes, it is possible to do this. I wrote a blog post which shows you the steps you need to take. This is for desktop/laptop browsers only.
Anything you want!, the goal for the site is to accommodate a wide variety of games, environments and settings. I've had more than a few writers tell me that they listen to these for inspiration when they work. Whatever you're playing or working on, new ambiences are being added all the time.
I've tried to categorize each piece of audio into basic groups: Ambience: Implies background noises, sound design elements, something to put you in 'the place'. Minimal music: Is usually simple tones and musical elements that have been added to increase the effect of whatever I was going for. Music: is just that, a few of the pieces are either straight up music, or have a larger musical element.
I create all the sounds as high fidelity,lossless, 24 bit/44.1khz uncompressed audio files before dithering and encoding for the web. The 10 minute ambience files are eventually compressed into 192kbit/sec mp3 files, which for me are the best balance between file size (cost) and fidelity. SoundPad files are compressed a bit more and converted to both .ogg and .mp3 (your browser will automatically select the right format - e.g. Chrome chooses .ogg)
Noticed that did you? I wanted it to be a) not too long and b) long enough so the GM could click play and have some time before having to deal with the audio.
Each ambience is 10 minutes of non-repeating sound. The player will loop the playlist by default, i.e. when it gets to the last track it will start again with the first track. If there is 1 track in the playlist, it will loop. There is a new loop toggle for individual tracks in the playlist. When this is selected, the track with loop turned on will loop until the switch is turned off. This way you can fill the playlist with tracks and select one track to loop until you choose not to. (This new feature negates the old hack of adding the same track to the playlist multiple times)
Yes! Saving of playlists has now been implemented. Load up some ambiences and click Save to store your playlist. Note: this is machine/device dependent, so if you save a playlist on your laptop, it won't be available on your phone. The easiest way to sync them is to use the new Link button see below at the bottom of the player which will generate an HTML link of your playlist which you can email to yourself, load up on another machine and save it again.
Sure, I'm happy to take requests. Working on a super-cool campaign and have a perfect scene for situational audio and I don't have it? Let me know! You can email me at : [email protected] or find me as "Tabletop Audio" on: or
This site has been designed to work on all modern browsers and devices. If there is something that doesn't work on your device/browser and you feel like it should, please let me know! (The few issues people have can often be caused by a misbehaving browser extension. Try disabling these as your first troubleshooting step.)
All of the 10 minute ambiences on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
SoundPad sounds are not meant to be downloaded and are not for use outside tabletopaudio.com.
Any art that is not my own or public domain is under Creative Commons license. I've tried to link back (attribution) to the artists (see below), however, if I've screwed something up, or I'm using your artwork and you're not happy about it, PLEASE let me know and I will take it down or fix what is needed as soon as possible.