noise cancelling machine for office

Most offices have an average sound level in the 45 – 60 decibel sound range. Not bad at all. Until the person in the next cubicle begins feeding 150 pages into the shredder and cusses loudly because it jammed. Or the electric stapler bangs next door. Marpac, a long-time manufacturer of white noise machines, recommends that a machine is needed for every 300 square feet. Meaning you probably have to take care of yourself, because there isn’t a machine made to service big offices.

Here are some of the best white noise machines to make your workspace more peaceful, less stressful, and make you more productive.

10 Best White Noise Machines For Office of 2022

One of these white noise machines should be able to meet your needs. From machines with 60 different sounds to portable and compact to high fidelity sound, we tried to provide as many good options as possible.

1) Rocam CR1016 White Noise Machine for Office

The Rocam CR1016 White Noise Sound Machine is a little bigger than some of the other machines. It also has a rectangular shape (approximately 7.5″ x 2.5″ x 3″ high) that looks like it belongs in an office. The CR1016 comes with 42 different non-looping sounds divided into 4 categories–6 fan sounds, 6 white noise sounds, 15 lullabies, 15 other sounds such as campfires and crickets–played on high fidelity MP3 audio format dual speakers. 

Powered by a USB cable, an AC plug, or 3 AA batteries, you can use it in your office or pick it up and take it to meetings. The volume control is adjustable from 0 – 14 enabling the perfect sound level and the memory function will automatically restart with the last track played and volume setting. There are 4 timer settings–15 minutes, 30 minutes, 45 minutes, 60 minutes–along with a continuous play option. 

The large simple to operate control panel is located on top of the machine for easy access. It includes a headphone jack for private listening and provides a 12 month replacement warranty along with a 3 month money back guarantee.

The Good

  • 42 different non-looping sounds – 6 fan, 6 white, 15 lullabies, 15 other
  • Dual speakers c/w high fidelity MP3 audio format
  • Powered by USB cable, AC plug, or 3 AA batteries
  • Volume control settings 0 – 14
  • 4 timer settings – 15, 30, 45, 60 minutes and continuous play
  • Headphone jack for private listening
  • 12 month replacement warranty c/w 3 month money back guarantee

The Not so Good

2) Serene Evolution White Noise Machine 

The Serene Evolution White Noise Machine provides noise cancelling and masks sounds for office privacy. Powered by an AC adaptor, it is loaded with your choice of 60 sounds including fan sounds, nature sounds, brown sounds, and pink sounds, among others. The high fidelity speaker has 25 volume settings. Use the touch control or the wireless remote control which is perfect for machines located across the office. (Remote works up to 50 feet from the machine.)

This is a compact coffee mug shaped machine 4.25″ in diameter and 4.5″ high. It will run continuously or preset it for 30, 60, or 120 minutes. When the machine is turned on again after being off, it will automatically return to the previous sound and volume.

The Good

  • Effectively provides office privacy
  • AC powered
  • Remote control – up to 50′. Good for office settings
  • 60 different sound options
  • 5 brown noise sounds/4 pink noise sounds
  • Runs continuously or three timed presets
  • 30 day refund/exchange policy

The Not so Good

  • Some complaints about quality of sound

3) Magicteam  White Noise Machine 

The Magicteam White Noise Machine  is a small, light (0.36 lbs.) unit–good for office, sleeping, or relaxing while it cancels intrusive noise. It provides 20 non-looping white noise, brown noise, and pink noise sounds such as wave, rain, brook, fire, birds, etc. with 32 volume settings. The timer can be set at hourly increments from 1 hour to 5 hours. It also has a continuous play option for all day use. A built-in memory function automatically restores the machine to the previous settings–including volume, sound track, and time remaining–in case of a power interruption

A unique solid state design provides powerful performance in the small (just over 2.5″ square x 2.83″ high), easily portable noise machine. It is powered by either a USB cable or AC power plug. 

Note: Amazon states 2 sizes–6.3 ” x 4″ x 2.4″ and 2.64″ x 2.64″ x 2.83″. The smaller size is correct.

The Good

  • Small, light, and portable white noise machine
  • 20 non-looping white noise, brown noise, and pink noise tracks
  • 32 volume settings
  • Multiple time settings including continuous play
  • Powered by USB cable or AC plug

The Not so Good

4) elesories S3-ECO White Noise Machine

The elesories S3-ECO White Noise Machine  is a compact inexpensive unit that will help bring some quiet to your office. It gives you the option of 24 different sounds, including 5 fan sounds, 5 white noise sounds, 7 nature sounds, and 7 unique sounds such as heartbeat and piano. The 52 mm high fidelity speaker is situated on the bottom of the machine which will increase sound volume if it is set on a hard reflective surface. (A soft surface will absorb sound.) 

The different sound categories are separated on a large rocker button on top of the machine making it easy to go to your preference. An on/off button and up and down volume buttons complete the top controls. The volume control is variable, ranging in frequency from 20 Hz – 20 KHz, which should cover most intruding noises. Timer settings are a pushbutton control on the rear of the machine featuring 30, 60, 90 minute auto off settings along with a continuous run option. 

The S3-ECO is powered by a USB cable or AC plug and comes with a headphone jack for private listening. It has one of the better white noise machine warranties at 2 years with a 30 day return/refund guarantee.

Note: The headphone jack provides the option of combining this white noise machine with a wired sleeping ear muff. Please see our article Best Noise Cancelling Earmuffs for Sleeping of 2022 for some ideas that might work for you.

The Good

  • Inexpensive and compact
  • 24 different sound options
  • Bottom mount hi-fi speaker
  • Variable speed volume control
  • USB or AC power source
  • Headphone jack
  • 2 year warranty c/w 30 day return/refund guarantee

The Not so Good

  • Proprietary power jack design means using only Elesories cable for power

5) LectroFan Evo White Noise Sound Machine 

If you are looking for a machine with cricket and bird sounds, the LectroFan Evo White Noise Sound Machine is not the machine for you. But if you want an excellent noise masking machine manufactured by a USA company (Adaptive Sound Technologies) that only does one thing–sound machines–buy this one. It provides 10 white noise, brown noise, and pink noise variations, 10 fan sounds, and 2 ocean sounds. The safe, solid state design is 100% digital with no moving parts. The non-repeating sounds are reproduced digitally through a high fidelity speaker for better clear sound. It has a precise volume control making it easy to find the exact sound level for your needs.

Ideal for creating a disturbance-free work area, this machine offers an optional timer along with a continuous play option, and jack that can be used with a headphone or portable speaker providing greater versatility for your office. Powered by either USB cable or AC plug, this machine comes with a 1 year limited warranty and a 30 day return/refund guarantee.

Note: ASTI (Adaptive Sound Technologies) manufactures many different white noise machines of various prices and designs.

The Good

  • 10 white, brown, and pink noise sounds, 10 fan sounds, 2 ocean sounds
  • 100% digital – no moving parts
  • Solid state design, hi-fi speaker
  • Precise volume control
  • Headphone or portable speaker jack
  • USA company
  • 1 year limited warranty c/w 30 day return/refund guarantee

The Not so Good

6) HoMedics White Noise Sound Machine

The HoMedics White Noise Sound Machine design reminds me a little of a Star Wars fighter craft. Which may be why this inexpensive, compact, and portable machine is hard to beat. It will run on AC power of 4 AA batteries. The auto off timer can be set for 15, 30, or 60 minutes, and it will play continuously if you prefer. It produces 6 white noise sounds that are easy to access with 6 individual buttons for simple operation. The variable adjustable knob allows you to choose the exact volume of sound you want and/or need for a peaceful environment.

The small flat design (about 6.5″ in diameter and only 2″ high) makes it easy to slip into a purse, suitcase, or even large pockets. And the battery option makes it a ‘use anywhere’ machine. Six soothing sounds including white noise, thunder, ocean, rain, summer night, and brook. 30 day return/replacement guarantee.

The Good

  • Inexpensive, compact, portable
  • AC or battery operation
  • 6 sounds with individual control buttons
  • Variable volume adjustment
  • 30 day replacement/return guarantee

The Not so Good

  • Some complaints LED lights are a little bright for sleeping

7)  Conor High Fidelity White Noise Machine

The Conor High Fidelity White Noise Machine is another small machine with big performance. It provides 24 soothing sounds to mask noise pollution in your office–12 fan sounds and 12 ambient options including white noise, brown noise, and pink noise. It has only 3 buttons to control all of its operations, including precise volume control for the perfect sound. The large 3.5″ diameter high quality speaker puts out stable and consistent sound.

This Conor is powered by a USB cable or AC plug and features 2 USB charging ports that can be used to charge other devices–such as a phone. The timer can be set for 30, 60, or 90 minutes, then will shut off automatically–or set it for continuous play. The built-in memory will resume play with the same sound, volume, and timer settings when it is turned on. It is a little bigger than some of the other machines at 4.14″ in diameter and a little over 3″ high.

The Good

  • 24 soothing sound masking noises – 12 fan sounds, 12 ambient sounds
  • 3 button control
  • Large 3.5″ diameter speaker
  • Powered by USB cable or AC plug
  • 3 timer options (30 minutes, 60 minutes, 90 minutes) along with continuous play option
  • 2 USB ports to charge other devices

The Not so Good

  • Warranty information not available

8) Douni White Noise Machine

Not only does the Douni White Noise Machine have an operating range of 0 – 85 decibels, the woodgrain finish is compatible with most décor. It produces 24 non-looping sounds in 3 different categories – 7 fan sounds, 7 white noise sounds, and 10 classical nature sounds. The timer can be set to run 30, 60, or 90 minutes with an automatic shut off. Or set it to run continuously all day. The memory function will return to the last settings of sound, volume, and timer when turned on again.

The 3.5 mm jack gives you the option of using headphones if you prefer privacy. It has 32 volume settings up to 85 decibels. And comes with a 1 year warranty and a 60 day money back guarantee. It is powered either by a USB cable or AC plug. The powerful speaker drive produces clear realistic sound.

Given that this machine volume goes to 85 decibels, it might be worthwhile to get an inexpensive decibel meter to help get the setting exactly where you want it.

Note: Amazon site states 32 volume levels in 85 decibel increments. This is impossible and not correct.

The Good

  • Operating range of up to 85 decibels
  • Produces 24 non-looping sounds – 7 fan sounds, 7 white noise sounds, 10 classical nature sounds
  • 3 timer settings – 30, 60, or 90 minutes c/w continuous run option
  • Memory function
  • Headphone jack
  • Powered by USP cord or AC plug
  • 1 year hassle-free warranty with a 60 day money back guarantee

The Not so Good

9) SNOOZ White Noise Sound Machine

The SNOOZ White Noise Sound Machine provides peaceful non-looping white noise from a real fan. The fan tone and volume has 10 fully adjustable settings. It is simple to operate with 3 controls on the top for on/off and fan speed. Adjusting for the 10 different fan tones is achieved by rotating the outer shell.

Optional free SNOOZ app can be downloaded to your smartphone to give you remote control programable on/off, scheduling the timer and night light, and nursery calibration. It has a 100 day satisfaction guarantee return policy and a 1 year limited warranty.

The Good

  • Provides peaceful non-looping fan noise from a real fan
  • 10 fully adjustable fan tones
  • Simple operation – on/off, fan speed buttons
  • SNOOZ app for remote control
  • 1 year limited warranty c/w 100 day satisfaction guaranteed return policy

The Not so Good

10) Yogasleep Dohm UNO White Noise Machine

The Yogasleep Dohm UNO White Noise Machine looks like a knock-off of the original white noise Marpac Dohm machines. I chose it because many of the Marpac reviews seem to be going from bad to worse. This machine gets great reviews.

The SL01 features a real moving fan with 4-speed settings and the power of its airflow can be controlled with a simple twist of the outside shell. Complete with multiple timer functions and continuous run option, and a dark screen LED display that does not create light pollution in the room. Excellent sound machine for office privacy–ensuring sensitive topics remain secure and confidential. It comes with a risk-free 101 night trial plan.

The Good

  • Fan only white noise machine
  • 4 fan speeds
  • Multiple timer functions c/w continuous run option
  • Simple to adjust airflow
  • Dark screed LED display
  • Risk-free 101 night trial 

The Not so Good

  • May have a rattling noise

11 Bonus) TMSOFT Downloadable White Noise App

The TMSOFT Downloadable White Noise App is one of many sound apps you can download to your MP3 player, Kindle, or other device to turn it into an office white noise machine. This app features 40 looped sounds to help bring privacy and quiet to your office space. It also gives you the ability to pretend you are a DJ and create your own mix of sounds. Works in the background to allow the use of other apps without interference. It will increase focus and enhance office privacy.

The sound catalog ranges from Air Conditioner to Water Sprinkler and includes white noise, brown noise, and pink noise among others. It is designed to work on all Android based phones and tablets and comes with many advanced settings–allowing you to prevent interruptions such as notifications, adjust volume, balance, pitch, set alarm times, etc.

This is a very inexpensive way to check out white noise and the effects it will have on you, without buying a machine. You may decide that this app does everything you want, or upgrading to a white noise machine looks like a more attractive option.

The Good

  • Excellent inexpensive way of experiencing the effects of white noise
  • 40 different soundtracks
  • Includes brown noise and pink noise sounds
  • Ability to mix and match sounds to your preference
  • Works on all Android based devices
  • Multiple advanced settings 

The Not so Good

How We Chose White Noise Machines For Office

Most of the information and sales pitch about white noise machines will be tilted towards sleeping. With maybe a wink and nod about office noise canceling that leads to a quieter workspace, privacy, and confidentiality. After all, that is what white noise machines were first designed to do.

Benefits of a Noise Cancelling Machine for the Office

Sound masking devices tend to produce noise sounding somewhat like that of an air conditioner. These machines are not usually distracting because of their consistent monotonous sound. This means they will disrupt most voices from other parts of the office; providing privacy for everyone because they will also cancel the sound of your voice.

  • Reduce Stress. Less noise will reduce your stress at work, and at home. Constantly hearing noise from every direction while at your desk, listening to office conversations while trying to work or talk to customers is more stressful than you think. Being able to multi-task is usually considered a good attribute, but mentally fending off office racket is unnecessary if you have a decent white noise machine.
  • Reduce Distractions. Adding to the stress are other minor distractions (if taken individually) such as typewriters, keyboards, copiers, staplers, coffee machines, etc. that can add to your stress, and decrease your productivity.
  • Increased Productivity. If you are not trying to hear what may be said about you, or what Mary-Jane and the girls did on the weekend, because your white noise machine drowns out all that incoming, you should be more productive each day.
  • Increased Privacy & Confidentiality. Even though we live in an email and texting world, many people prefer to get things done on the phone, if not in person. Trying to pump up a big deal with all that clatter makes it more difficult for you to concentrate and could make your prospective client wonder if are sitting in a joint that hustles furnace cleaning by phone. 

How Noise Cancelling Machines Work

White noise machines produce sound that covers a wide range of the audio spectrum, meaning the noise produced can effectively block or cancel incoming noise of the same or lower volume level. This sounds goofy to me–making more noise to hear less. 

It works because, as smart as your brain is, it cannot separate a wide range of sounds–too much input to process. So your brain does not notice distracting noises individually, and so it ignores them. For instance, in the office, having a conversation going on at the same time a shredder is running along with constant fan noise prevents the brain from telling them apart–so they just disappear into a general hum.

What is White Noise?

The human ear can detect sounds in a range between 0 Hertz and 20,000 Hertz. White noise produces audio frequencies that cover this entire range. This gives it the ability to cover most distracting noises you hear at work, or while working at home. It also blocks or cancels disruptive noises while you try to sleep.

White noise is used as a catch-all phrase, but there are 3 main types of sound blocking noises.

White Noise

White noise is similar to white light. White light contains all the wavelengths of the visible spectrum. White noise contains all the frequencies. Both white light and white noise produce equal intensity across the full range of their light spectrum and sound frequencies.

Pink Noise

Pink noise contains all of the frequencies that the human ear can hear. While white noise has consistent strength across all frequencies, the intensity of pink noise decreases with the increase in frequency (higher Hertz number). Examples of pure pink noise in nature are leaves rustling in the wind, waves lapping a shoreline, or steady falling rain. This is why many white noise machines offer those types of sound options.

Brown Noise

Brown noise lowers high frequencies even further than pink noise and is often described as a harsher noise. An example in nature is a roaring river current. Many machines include brown noise sounds in their repertoire because they boost focus and relaxation–good options for the office environment.

White Noise Machine for Office – Buying Considerations

Here are a few machine features you should consider before buying.

  • Size. Although most white noise machines are fairly compact, keep size in mind if you plan to pack it in a purse, bag, or suitcase. They are also not very heavy–usually weighing under a pound.
  • Sound Options. There are many white noise-only machines, but even more that include pink noise, brown noise, and nature or instrumental noises. Some machines do not have good speakers, so check out the sound before buying, if possible.
  • Volume. You want to make sure that the white noise machine has sufficient volume to counteract incoming noise.
  • Headphone/Speaker Jack. While not essential, a headphone/speaker jack provides versatility to your machine. Hook up a sub-woofer to combat bass noise. Or you can plug in standard headphones for privacy or, for even better sound suppression, plug in Noise Cancelling Earmuffs. (Please link to our article for more information.)
  • Power Options. The majority of white noise machines use a USB cable with a power block for optional AC power. Some of them have a battery backup or rechargeable batteries. For something truly portable, having batteries is a necessity. 

A couple of other things you might want to consider are: Timer and Looping/Non-Looping. I do not think these are important in an office setting, but you might want to take them into account if you are planning to use the machine at home. Or if you nap in the office.

White Noise Machine for Office – Best of the Best

Choosing the Best of the Best white noise machine for your office can be a little daunting because of the multitude of options available. But I chose the Rocam CR1016 White Noise Machine for Office because it has more of the options I like in one box than most of the other machines.

It has more than enough sound choices (although lullabies might be the wrong option for the office), along with high quality dual speakers, an excellent warranty, and true portability because it will run on a plug or batteries to make it an excellent choice for an office white noise machine.

The CR1016 provides the versatility of battery operation, the diversity of sound, and headphone or speaker connection if necessary.

The Good

  • 42 different non-looping sounds – 6 fan, 6 white, 15 lullabies, 15 other
  • Dual speakers c/w high fidelity MP3 audio format
  • Powered by USB cable, AC plug, or 3 AA batteries
  • Volume control settings 0 – 14
  • 4 timer settings – 15, 30, 45, 60 minutes and continuous play
  • Headphone jack for private listening
  • 12 month replacement warranty c/w 3 month money back guarantee

I have added an honorable mention below because I really like the idea of having an opportunity to try out white noise before buying a machine. Although the sound quality might differ from machine to machine, downloading a white noise app with access to multiple sound options–and getting immediate access–is an attractive inexpensive option.

White Noise Machine for Office – Honorable Mention

TMSOFT Downloadable White Noise seems like the perfect combination of inexpensive convenience, portability, and white noise experimentation. Although white noise machines are used for treating tinnitus, sleeping problems, and providing quiet, private offices, white noise is not for everyone. So, before plunking down money for a white noise machine for your office and/or bedroom, try this inexpensive download to make sure white noise is the choice for you.

Having white noise on a device you carry with you all the time will let you set it up at the office, and use it for sleeping. Play different types and styles of white noise at different volumes to find the best option for you. (No point in buying a fan only type of noise machine, and then finding out that you prefer nature sounds.) Some people will find certain sounds or noises distracting. This defeats the purpose of office white noise–at least somewhat. 

The Good

  • Excellent inexpensive way of experiencing the effects of white noise
  • 40 different sound tracks
  • Includes brown noise and pink noise sounds
  • Ability to mix and match sounds to your preference
  • Works on all Android based devices
  • Multiple advanced settings

Also, there are many other white noise/sound options available for noise masking and privacy, such as:

This may seem like strange advice from someone who considers successfully turning on his cell phone a victory. And playing Sass Jordan at 100 decibels the best office white noise. But it is by far, and away, the most logical first step towards an office white noise machine that will provide quiet, privacy, and confidentiality.

Where to Place the White Noise Machine for Office Privacy

Noise cancelling machines should be placed closest to those on the receiving end of the noise–in most cases, you. It is your stress that needs to be reduced. But if you are trying for privacy and confidentiality, the machine should be placed a little closer to the listener to be able to cancel your conversation as it is leaving your office or cubicle. 

Some of the machines on this list have jacks included, which will allow you to hook up another speaker inside your office or cubicle, if necessary, to prevent your conversations from getting out of the office.

FAQs About White Noise Machine For Office

Some of the following questions come up when people are considering white noise machines for the office.

How do white noise machines make sounds?

There are 2 types of white noise machines–electromechanical and solid-state electronics c/w speaker. The electromechanical devices are made up of a fan and motor that blows air through specially designed air passages, and covers the full range of frequencies detectable by the human ear. 

Solid state electronic models use integrated circuits and a speaker to drive sound. Although more popular, they may not provide the bass-blocking abilities of electromechanical machines.

Will white noise machines cancel bass sounds?

Sometimes. White noise machines will usually cancel bass voices but will have trouble with things like footfalls, bass-heavy music, compressors, etc. Although electromechanical (machines with fans) white noise machines contain bass-blocking ability because they span the entire range of audible frequencies, their speakers are too small to counter serious bass. White noise machines have to produce noise that is louder than the intruding noise. If the speaker cannot do that, you will have the noise of both, but no bass canceling.

Note: If you work in a bass heavy office, give some consideration to getting a white noise machine with a jack, and plugging in your own sub-woofer.

Is one noise canceling machine enough for an office?

Generally, one white noise machine will work in a maximum of 300 square feet. Any open concept office bigger than that will require more machines. A good rule of thumb is one machine per cubicle or office for truly efficient noise suppression and privacy and confidentiality.

How loud does a white noise machine need to be?

The average office noise is between 45 and 65 decibels. A white noise machine has to be louder than that to mask most of the sounds an office produces. Even then it will probably not cancel one-time occurrences like someone getting fired really loudly.

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Author S Krone

A lawyer never retires. So I would just say that I am not as active as I used to be. Now I simply dedicate myself to fishing, my hobby, and my grandchildren. For Business Finance News I write about legal aspects of mortgage policies, mostly regarding the rights of policyholders. I also have articles about personal injuries.

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