Soothing audio salvation for those who hate noise.
If you work in an open office, the struggle is real.
Noise is stressful. It hurts productivity and makes you miserable. For people who suffer from misophonia, noise can be a living nightmare.
Luckily, help is at hand. Ambient sounds like white noise create a buffer between your ears and your immediate environment, blocking out distractions without overwhelming the senses.
Not only that, but according to a study of 65 people published in the Journal of Consumer Research, listening to ambient noise of around 70dB can not only block out the hassle, but can make you more creative.
Whether you want to work or sleep in peace, here are a few websites you can use to drown out unwanted noise. They are best experienced with headphones:
1. Rainy Mood.
As any pluviophile will know, rain makes everything better. Rainy Mood is my go-to ambient noise app. The best part is they let you add a YouTube video to the URL and create your own rain/song mix with your favourite relaxing song – here’s one I made.
Perfect for: The anxiety-riddled / silencing Karen, who nobody fucking likes by the way, and who is determined to make you listen to every last fucking bite of whatever shitty lunch she’s smacking her mouth around at her desk. How do you not know you’re making that fucking noise, Karen?! HOW DO YOU NOT KNOW?!
For fans of white noise, White Noise Player offers a whole spectrum of colours to choose from; white, grey, brown, pink, blue, and violet, each a different frequency of noise. Choose one, or a combination of colours, and block out the ambient hassle.
Perfect for: The over-stimulated / when you’re about to murder the shit out of whoever is crinkling packets of chips right now I swear to fucking god I’ll kill every mother fucking last one of you.
Silence is figuratively deafening, and Coffitivity solves that problem by providing the relaxing background fugue of a coffee shop. There are several audio scenes to choose from, depending how many voices you want murmuring in the distance.
Perfect for: Hipsters / putting a damper on Mike the intern, who hits his fucking keyboard like each key is a repressed childhood trauma that he needs to punch to feel something. That fucking guy.
4. Simply Noise.
Does what it says on the tin, but with a neat trick. Select either white, pink, or brown noise, set your preferred volume, and hit the ‘oscillate’ button. Simply Noise will then adjust the volume in pleasing waves. You can even hit the sleep timer to turn it off if you plan to doze.
Perfect for: The highly caffienated / dulling the laughter of whoever the fuck in the room next door keeps laughing at their screen like it’s the funniest goddamn thing in the world. It isn’t. Fuck you, chuckles.
5. Rainy Cafe.
Like Rainy Mood and Coffitvity in one place, though providing fewer options.
Perfect for: The lazy browser / slight of tab / when June the temp is cracking her knuckles right in your fucking ear. Fuck off, June. Okay so it might not make you arthritic, but it does make insufferable.
Yes but is there an app? No.
Find the sound of waves soothing? How about a crackling fire? Soundrown lets you create your own ambient orchestra, mixing together chatter, rain, birds, fire, and wave sounds to create your perfect productive atmosphere.
Perfect for: Daydreamers / Shutting down Hugh in HR, who has been nursing a fucking cough for the past six-months. What the fuck, Hugh? Is it tuberculosis? Cough yourself to death somewhere else, tosser.
Yes but is there an app? No.
Featuring dozens of sound options, from ambient nose, atmospheric noise, and voices, to sound patterns, tonal drones, and binaural tones (which are trippy as fuck), each with settings to change bass and treble pitch, MyNoise is a goddamn pro-level suite of auditory defense tools.
Perfect for: Meditative types / silencing the fuck out of Pam in accounts, who’s mouth-breathing makes you want to stab out your own eye balls with a fucking ball point pen.
Yes but is there an app? iOS.
Some day you’re going to snap. All the clicking and the crunching and the tapping and the slurping and the coughing and the sniffling is going to get to goddamn much and you’re going to fucking snap. And when that happens you need to activate mother fucking Auditory Response Sound Emergency plan X, and listen to the greatest noise on the internet: a disco cover of Four Non-Blonde’s hit song “What’s up?” by He-Man and friends, because fuck if it isn’t just glorious.
Perfect for: When you’re standing alone in the blackest depths of your soul surrounded only by the maniacal laughter you can’t seem to stop bellowing from your throat, and the only hope left in this cold and desolate world of noise and confusion is to sing the fuck out of one of the greatest songs ever written / Fridays.
Yes but is there an app? NO BUT EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE OKAY, YOU’VE GOT THIS.
Bonus: Here’s a 10-min mash-up I made of all the ambient noise websites at once:
Is it good? No. Are you going to listen to it anyway? Probably. Do we have to thank you personally? Yes.