Which noise machine do you recommend?
April 14, 2024 9:44 AM   Subscribe

The first unannounced park concert (recorded, not live music) is happening in my neighborhood, and I want to find a way to mitigate the noise experienced in my house as the season unfolds. I hoping noise machines could work. I figure I need several of these, for multiple rooms. But which ones to buy?

Looking for your specific recommended models or feature set on noise machines that you think are best able to somewhat mask the sound of loud, bass heavy music played on speakers less than 100 meters from my house, loud enough where we can make out the lyrics. Smaller units preferred as we will have to store when not in use.

I recognize that completely cancelling out the music is impossible, but am looking to take the edge off.

Broader context: I expect as many as 10 festival/concert days a year, and since we rarely get any notice of when they are happening, planning to not be home is not viable. New windows are not viable. My city councilman and noise bylaw folks are not at all helpful with respect to ensuring notice is provided to residents or working to see that or music volumes are managed.
posted by walkinginsunshine to Shopping (16 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I can vouch for this wee thing, and the trick is to put it in your biggest mixing bowl or a plastic plant pot or something to serve as an acoustic sound-booster. You also may want to experiment with moving it around the room to see how it bounces best for making a screen between you and the noise - sometimes it's not the obvious spot by the window, sometimes one of the corners of the room works even better.

I am pretty certain any of the much cheaper knockoffs would also be fine, using the same methodology.

I also use my devices with an app called myNoise, which is fine in the free version but absolutely worth the $20 for the paid options. When we travel, I usually end up with noise playing on my phone on the nightstand and my iPad plugged in on the hotel room vanity/counter to bounce off a corner there, so I am being insulated from noise from outside and also from the hotel hallway.
posted by Lyn Never at 10:05 AM on April 14 [1 favorite]

Also buy foam earplugs.
posted by saturdaymornings at 10:08 AM on April 14 [2 favorites]

I think noise-canceling headphones/earbuds would be the best solution.
posted by credulous at 10:26 AM on April 14 [7 favorites]

I've played around with noise machines, foam earplugs, and noise-canceling earbuds. The best solution I have found is apple airpod pros, using the noise cancellation, and also playing some relaxing/ambient music through them...
posted by ManInSuit at 10:35 AM on April 14

We've relied on this particular brown noise video played at different volumes to drown out sound from outdoors through our speakers for almost a decade now. We also live near a park that hosts concerts. The channel has a number of other ambient sounds that might be better suited to match your particular environment - although there are not only useful ones, there are also some, uh, pretty weird ones.
posted by eschatfische at 10:36 AM on April 14 [1 favorite]

I have both the LectroFan Micro2 that Lyn Never mentioned as well as LectroFan's big brother. I would give an edge to the full size version since it has more white noise options. I also find the full size version a bit more comfortable to listen to since it is lower pitched. Thus, I would suggest purchasing at least one full size option if space permits.
posted by oceano at 10:38 AM on April 14

>> Also buy foam earplugs


>> I think noise-canceling headphones/earbuds would be the best solution

= a devastating, **mobile** noise-evaporating combination
posted by superelastic at 11:01 AM on April 14

Response by poster: Thanks so much for all the suggestions! There are both people and pets bothered by the noise, which can last 9+hours. Hence, the interest in room solutions as opposed to personal use solutions.
posted by walkinginsunshine at 11:40 AM on April 14

We have had the old version of this one for over 10 years now. The sound is amazing. And full and rich.
posted by Snowishberlin at 1:17 PM on April 14

I have the classic lectrofan and I love it for sleep, though I will say one of my dogs seems to hate the setting I use and leaves the room the second I turn it on at night.
posted by obfuscation at 2:34 PM on April 14

I have a LectroFan classic in every bedroom and I think they go a long way to making me forget about airplanes, ambulances, and our town’s summer concert series. They really do seem to drown out everything but I don’t know how dogs and cats feel about them.
posted by paris moon at 3:15 PM on April 14

I use an ipad or a laptop with an mp3 of some white noise set on repeat. (My favorite is an hour long recording of a rain storm.) The built in speakers are enough for me, but of course you could hook them up to external speakers instead.

Actual physical fans work pretty well too and they also cool you off (I'm guessing the concerts will mostly happen in summer). The higher the fan setting, the more white noise they produce.

Hope this helps!
posted by DrumsIntheDeep at 3:56 PM on April 14

Not a machine, but I really like the white noise app/website MyNoise. What's nice about it is you have so many options of different sounds to choose from, and each sound has multiple "soundscapes" and then you can customize the individual levels of the bass, treble, etc for each sound to find what seems to work best to cancel things out.

So a laptop/tablet/phone connected to blue tooth speakers would be my preference. I've also tried white noise machines, but I really like the ability to customize the noises.
posted by litera scripta manet at 5:55 AM on April 15

I love my Loftie alarm clock - was skeptical at first, but it has a pretty good library of sounds, and you can adjust it so that the lights go completely dark, which is important to me.
posted by honeybee413 at 10:02 AM on April 15

And for what it's worth you can ask Siri to play white noise, and I suspect most of the other assistants have similar capabilities.

I would honestly find white noise more grating than just getting used to the music, but the less sibilant white noise adjacent noises from my Lectrofan are awesome and mostly let me sleep through the worst of hotel neighbors when I'm on vacation.
posted by Kyol at 11:25 AM on April 15

This is the one I love: https://www.amazon.ca/Rooster-BRRC107-Sound-Machine-Sounds/dp/B01H6WXUX8/ (it's also on US Amazon)
posted by meepmeow at 5:17 AM on April 18

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