Acetylene is one of the most important precursors of soot and contributes to soot growth by the hydrogen-abstraction acetylene-addition (HACA) mechanism. In this work, we undertake time-resolved simultaneous measurements of acetylene and soot behind reflected shock waves at temperatures of 1600-2200. K and pressures of 3-5. bar. Acetylene mole fraction time-histories are measured from the absorption of a quantum-cascade laser operating around 13.6. μm. The soot volume fraction, particle size and number densities are calculated from the extinction and scattering of a cw Nd:Yag laser at 532. nm. Acetylene and soot are generated from the pyrolysis of 1% benzene in argon, 2.35% ethylene in argon, and binary mixtures of ethylene with propane/methane in argon. We note that acetylene time-histories exhibit a two-stage growth during the pyrolysis of benzene, which can be correlated to the initial rapid increase of soot volume fraction and a later plateauing. In comparison to ethylene pyrolysis, the pyrolysis of benzene results in larger values of the soot volume fraction, particle diameter and number density. We compare the measured data against the values simulated using the method-of-moments routine in Chemkin-Pro and a detailed PAH mechanism based on KM2  and AramcoMech 1.3 . Large discrepancies are observed between the measured and predicted values of the soot parameters. The data obtained from our experiments may assist future validation and development of soot mechanisms.