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Old 11-03-2005, 07:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: Where morons reign supreme
White noise machines

Has anyone here ever used a white noise machine, and if so, do they work?

I am a light sleeper. I usually turn a fan on when I go to sleep, because it drowns out the noise my husband makes when he comes home from work; it would normally wake me up if the fan wasn't on. I have a hard time sleeping if I can hear traffic noise and whatnot as well. However, during the winter, the fan dries my nasal passages out and it's very uncomfortable. I need some sort of solution, and I'm either going to have to buy a humidifier for the room and continue using the fan, or else a white noise machine or something. I don't know anything about them though...any advice or suggestions?
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Old 11-03-2005, 07:29 PM   #2 (permalink)
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my wife's sister loves hers. Says she can't sleep without it. I personally find them annoying as hell, but that's probably because I'm not used to them and because I'm a very deep sleeper so I don't need them anyway
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Old 11-03-2005, 07:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You should watch the movie White Noise before buying one...
http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0375210/
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Old 11-03-2005, 07:55 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I prefer a small fan over a white noise machine. The machines always sound "fake." I've yet to hear one that as nice and smooth as a cheap fan.
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Old 11-03-2005, 07:59 PM   #5 (permalink)
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There's white noise, but that's just a description of the type of wavelength. There's also pink noise and brown noise. Here's a link that's informative: http://ccms.ntu.edu.tw/~karchung/Pho...%20sixteen.htm
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Old 11-04-2005, 03:13 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I have a CD player in my room and play sounds of ocean waves, which suits me great. There's all sorts of themes you can get, like sounds of a rain storm, waterfalls, etc. They usually sell those CD's at larger music shops, or New Age places.
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Old 11-04-2005, 05:07 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Medusa99
However, during the winter, the fan dries my nasal passages out and it's very uncomfortable. I need some sort of solution, and I'm either going to have to buy a humidifier for the room and continue using the fan, or else a white noise machine or something.
If you have radiators in your apartment... put water in a heat resistant bowl, the heat will cause the water to heat up and it evaporates -- basically acts like a humidifier..(good for the skin, and staticy hair)

When I first moved to NH, i looked for a white noise machine, because the quiet and the crickets outside drove me crazy (police cars, garbage trucks, etc are like a city lullabye to me) I couldn't find anything that wasnt waterfallish or oceanish (which made me have to pee every 10 minutes) so i have an old clock radio that I pushed to the end of the dial - where there's no signal and use that... either that or I just leave the tv set on all night
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Old 11-04-2005, 05:57 AM   #8 (permalink)
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We love ours. It's pretty weird to travel and have to sleep without it. So much so, in fact, that we bought a travel white-noise machine on our last trip a couple weeks ago.

When it's hot, we use our fan. When it's cold, we use the white noise machine. I'm a VERY light sleeper too--lurkette shifting in bed wakes me up--and our house is right on a busy street. If I didn't have some steady noise to drown out the road noise, I'd never sleep.
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Old 11-04-2005, 06:02 AM   #9 (permalink)
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We love ours. It's a Homedics Sound Spa - you can pick them up for about $20 at Target or WalMart. We never use any of the other sounds on it. We also got a pricy travel one from Brookstone so we can sleep when we're on the road. It's hard enough to get to sleep in a strange bed without also dealing with strange noises.
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Old 11-04-2005, 06:11 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maleficent
When I first moved to NH, i looked for a white noise machine, because the quiet and the crickets outside drove me crazy (police cars, garbage trucks, etc are like a city lullabye to me)
Hmm...a marketing niche, perhaps? I've seen CDs with wolves, loons, thunderstorms, streams...what have you. Never, however, have I seen one with sirens, trash cans, and screaming neighbors. You may be onto something, mal.
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Old 11-04-2005, 06:38 AM   #11 (permalink)
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My daughter cannot sleep without something on in her room. In the spring we use a fan, in the summer is the air conditioner.In the winter, we use a sound machine. It has options for many different sounds, but the one that helps her the most is the white noise. I bought her at Lakeside.com, but I don't see it available anymore. It was only $10!
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Old 11-04-2005, 07:45 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Medusa99
I need some sort of solution, and I'm either going to have to buy a humidifier for the room and continue using the fan, or else a white noise machine or something.?
Whatever you decide to do for the noise, go ahead and get a humidifier. It makes the house feel warmer in the winter. We put a whole-house humidifer on our HVAC system a few years ago, and I can't believe the difference.
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Old 11-04-2005, 08:14 AM   #13 (permalink)
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i use a fan as well and when i dont need it, i rely on a very noisy computer with a fan with a few bad bearings to do the trick. i get nervous and paranoid without sound, thus its a necessity.
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Old 11-04-2005, 08:40 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Perhaps I should get something like this. Leaving my computer on all night seems too wasteful, but like serlindsipity if I wake up in the middle of the night without some sort of white noise I get very paranoid and nervous.

I think I'll try the clock radio thing first though and see how that works out.
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Old 11-04-2005, 09:35 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Anyone who wants some sound while they sleep and also has a computer in their room should check out <a href="http://www.peterhirschberg.com/mysoftware.html">Aire Freshener</a>. It's free, not bloated, no ads or anything, very easy to use. I listen to 'Day Surf' while I sleep and it's awesome. (Problem is the computer fan can tend to drown out the sea noise sometimes.)
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Old 11-04-2005, 11:02 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I use my fan year long.. in the winter, I just move it further away and/or face away from it and I feel fine
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Old 11-04-2005, 11:12 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I'm a big fan person, too. After Katrina I didn't have power for a few days and I barely got any sleep. It wasn't the humidity and lack of air conditioning that kept me up, it was the silence. It drove me crazy.
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Old 11-04-2005, 01:01 PM   #18 (permalink)
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I've got a four-lane highway behind the backyard (at an intersection, no less). It doesn't stop me from sleeping -- double-paned glass works wonders -- but the road noise is so loud I don't like to spend time in the backyard.

I looked into "electronic sound walls" (devices that actually cancel background noise with complementary frequencies) for the back yard, but they don't seem to be the sort of thing you buy off the shelf. Anybody knows of a solution, outside of white-noise or cancelling headphones, I'd love to hear it.
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Old 11-04-2005, 02:00 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cellophanedeity
I think I'll try the clock radio thing first though and see how that works out.
Did that for years...found it to be quite effective. And it means you don't have to go out and buy something else
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Old 11-04-2005, 03:39 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Such an alien concept to me, that you would like and even need that, white noise drives me nuts.
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Old 11-04-2005, 07:19 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Thanks for the tips everyone. I'm going shopping for a humidifier tomorrow regardless, and I'll look into the white noise machines and test some of the soothing sounds
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Old 06-30-2009, 04:04 AM   #22 (permalink)
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The technology behind sound masking came out of the realization by scientists and engineers that "oral privacy" is actually a simple matter of making speech unintelligible. That is, if each of us can't understand what the other is saying, we have effectively established oral privacy - even though we may still be able to see and, to some extent, hear each other.

Last edited by The_Jazz; 06-30-2009 at 04:35 AM..
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Old 07-01-2009, 12:34 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Um ... okay...

Back to the OP ... Grasshopper, 4 years later, what did you find?

I liked my noise machine when I had one. I could set it to ocean waves, rain, waterfall, and something else. White noise (like static) drove me nuts. For me, it works better if it's an almost constant, slightly changing sound that doesn't involve wild animals or sudden noises like thunder.

I tried a couple of CD's. Howling wolves sometimes scared the bejesus out of me when I was almost asleep. The 'sounds of the forest' type cd was okay until I was almost asleep and started to imagine bears coming out of the woods. I don't do wolves or bears. Thunderstorms, a no-no. "Nature" was okay until the birds started chirping; that would eventually wake me up and I felt weird that it was still dark out. The 'rain' and 'ocean' and 'waterfall' on the machine were great for me. On the machine, the rain had no thunder, the ocean had no occasional whale song, and the waterfall had no annoying parrots (or whatever the hell was screeching on that jungle waterfall cd).

But hubby had a hard time sleeping with the noise, so I gave the machine away. Now I use a small fan.
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Old 07-01-2009, 05:46 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Wow...this is a blast from the past.

Never bought the white noise machine. Hubby bought me a CD specifically meant to help people sleep (I don't remember if it was nature sounds or soothing music), but it just didn't do it for me. I still use a fan
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Old 07-06-2009, 10:27 AM   #25 (permalink)
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i have never heard of a white noise machine. i do have to sleep with the fan on though. i have got used to the sound lulling me to sleep, and the temperature is a nice bonus. now i can't sleep without the noisy fan and cool temp. i do want to look into one of those waterfall/rainforest type machines.
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Old 07-08-2009, 06:17 AM   #26 (permalink)
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White Noise more accurately known as "sound masking" is based on the phenomenon that when "low level background noise" is added to an environment.
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