Biofuel combustion results in lower soot compared with petroleum fuels. There have been several studies of soot formation measurement in flames of biodiesel surrogates (methyl esters), but few quantitative measurements from real biodiesels. In this study, we obtain laser induced incandescence and extinction measurements from eight different production biodiesels and three pure methyl esters in both pool flames and pre-vapourised diffusion flames. The resulting soot measurement database is compared with measurements from pure methyl ester cases. The effects of the fuel characteristics (oxygen mass fraction and degree of the unsaturation) and burner configuration (pool and diffusion flame burner) on soot formation are analysed and discussed.