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Traffic Noise
Frequency-Shaped Traffic Noise Generator
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The Traffic Noise, without the pollution

Traffic noise is considered as a nuisance, and possibly one of the most difficult sources of noise to avoid in many places around the world. One way of reducing the annoyances of traffic noise is to mask it using more pleasant sounds - such as our rain and stream noises - or even this traffic noise!

If you can't beat your enemies, join them

When the frequency characteristics of the masking noise differ too much from the noise you are willing to camouflage, higher masking levels will be needed to cover the nuisance. When the masking levels become too loud for comfortable use, we suggest trying a strategy inspired from a well-know proverb: if you can't beat your enemies, join them!

In our case, this strategy consists of using one traffic noise to mask another. Of course, the masking traffic noise must be carefully designed such as to offer a better alternative to the original nuisance. Instead of using a simple traffic recording, we use re-synthesis to create an artificial traffic noise, which sounds like static - think of a waterfall - yet retains the important characteristics of the original sound. By sharing the same acoustic properties as the nuisance, our masking signal now achieves higher efficiency and can be used at quieter levels than any other masking sound. And because of the particular nature of our masking noise, even when the nuisance spikes above the mask, it will still be camouflaged.

Try listening to our traffic noise for a quarter of an hour, and see if your brain slowly learns how to filter it out from your conscious perception. In most cases, it will do so after a couple of minutes. Then, you will realize that not only has the masking noise been wiped from your perception, the unwanted noise has as well.

Published on April 12th, 2013

User Stories

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  Just watching the world go by... I was feeling exhausted until I took my time to drop everything to listen to this for the past few hours. I don't wanna end this moment.

  17th floor condo with the windows open, december night in Istanbul.

  One of my favorite bedtime mental scenarios is to imagine I'm on a long road trip, I've been driving all day, and finally I've pulled off to a cheap little motel by the freeway. I'm so tired, but I'm safe and still, and outside I can hear cars still passing in the lonely night, and I hope each of them gets to sleep as safely as I do, soon. Goodnight.

  This is close to what I used to hear decades ago in my moms car on a windy day, thinking: This sounds cool, I wished I somehow could record this. Today I'm glad that someone else made this gen to give me a great flasback - Mr. Pigeon. :) This is definitely my noise.

  This is quite possibly one of the coolest generators on this site, and I love listening to it for inspiration when I'm writing! I like to crank up the bass and pair it with healing water, for those scenes under a bridge by a riverside. My set right now has me sitting on a distant rooftop in a big city, looking down at the lights of cars below as they roll on through the night. Absolutely perfect <3

  This noise, paired with Thunder & Rain or Car Interior, is great when I need to write or edit photos on my laptop. It's not too distracting and blocks out other people talking or the TV in another room.

  I enjoy traffic sounds a lot. It would be even better if it had some car rumbling or even car honking sliders. I go to NYC every year. It's my favorite place to go to, and the sound of traffic makes me happy thinking about NYC.

  It has a great atmosphere and it is also good with Osmosis. Reminds me when I was young, when were having a road trip. It makes me relax.

  This is the sound. I can hear it right now when I step to my door: traffic on the Interstate highway that I have lived next to all my life. At this distance the lows and the highs are inaudible, but that solitary mid slider is spot-on -- an unbroken stream of distant cars traveling at a steady rate of speed. Where are the people going? Where have they been? The lullaby of my dreaming. Thank you.

  I live in a very quiet place these days, and it's driving me nuts. I miss the constant noise and activity of city life. This setting reminds me of my childhood when I visited my grandmother in a high-rise suburb next to a motorway, and would fall asleep in the guest room to the sound of distant engines going past outside.

  For the casual listener, my personal settings are not impressive, but they are in meditation mode. If you met someone like Dr. Pigeon in a local pub there would be no hesitation to put one of his pints on your tab. So for less than the average pint, try open your wallet and discover what you've been missing ;-)

  This reminds me of being in a park nearby a highway, like when I was younger as my local park was just 50-100m away from a highway.

  I've lived near traffic highways all my life. This sound is comforting to me rather than being a nuisance. Sometimes I lie in bed at night and listen to the distant sounds and wonder where the travelers are going. It stimulates my imagination. Thank you for this site.

  They somehow managed to make a bearable traffic noise! It's so homongenous and continuous that it's not annoying at all! Beautiful! Add some instrumental hip hop to your atmosphere, and you've got an all-nighter kicking!

  It's been 3 days I'm working with this generator with a low background looping music, like if I'm on a perpetual road trip with my car stereo.

  Thanks sooooo much for this. This really helps me sleep at night, because I sleep easier in moving cars for some reason and God knows I need sleep.

  I suffer from insomnia, but these ambient soundscapes help me to drift off to sleep. They are soothing and relaxing. My favorites are traffic, thunderstorm and rain. Thank you for this!

  This is absolutely fantastic, so well modulated/designed to provide perfect relaxation to help my anxiety and concentration.

  I thought I was the only person in the world who was comforted by the sound of a distant highway. Thank you so much for this! Another distant sound that would be wicked to add would be a distant night train horn with the accompanying chugga chugga harmonic noise of a distant passing train.

  This one reminds me of when a storm just landed in the area and the trees are swaying erratically against the wind. I kind of like it.

  I enjoy being out and about and this gives me that feeling. Thank you, Stephane!

  This sounds like traffic as heard from afar; it's quite smooth and slips into my subconcious almost instantly. I close my eyes and I can envision myself while working in my imaginary penthouse office, with the wonderfull skyline of a futuristic city out of my window.

  This is really amazing. My family moved to a quiet place and I seem to be the only one who actually enjoys and misses the sound of city traffic. Helps to block out unnecessary thoughts and focus.

  I have had pretty severe anxiety problems for most of this year. Honestly, the rhythmic noise of traffic is very therapeutic. It reminds me of where I grew up.

  Highway rest stop after a long drive...let the drone of traffic lull you to sleep.

  This goes very well with all of the songs by Daughter. It's like they were made for each other.

  When my brother is playing violin, and life is just plain hectic, it's nice to know that I can escape my house and go to the big city to get some work done!

  I moved to Ohio for high school, and lived down the road from HW18. The sound of the cars on the road was the soundtrack to the nights I sat in bed replaying the events that took part that day. It reminds me of when I was kid, when all there was to worry about were broken hearts and bad grades. Thank you for putting this up.

  Damn, it is amazing!

  As much as people seem to hate these kinds of noises, they actually relax me as they remind me of drives out to vacation spots, seeing the sights of the cities.

  As I grew up near a motorway, using the traffic noise in this way makes me feel calmer, more at home; on more windy nights, my room would end up sounds pretty much exactly like this, and it would lull me to sleep.