white noise

noun

Definition of white noise

1a : a heterogeneous mixture of sound waves extending over a wide frequency range — compare pink noise
b : a constant background noise especially : one that drowns out other sounds
2 : meaningless or distracting commotion, hubbub, or chatter the white noise of policy and politics in America— Joseph Nocera

Examples of white noise in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In fact, the bedroom should ideally contain just the things that contribute to sound sleep, like comfortable bedding, blackout shades, and white noise machines. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "The Right Way to Clean Your Bedroom So You Can Sleep Better Than Ever," 14 Mar. 2019 Turns out, our daughter was powerless against the white noise of the fan above the oven. Marisa Lascala, Good Housekeeping, "3 Tricks That Will Calm a Crying Baby, According to a Researcher Who Surveyed 800+ Parents," 16 Jan. 2019 There were also three bench conferences Monday, which were held with white noise blasting to block the gallery from listening. Catherine Herridge, Jason Donner, Fox News, "Reporter's Notebook: Excitement in Manafort trial courtroom as jury deliberates," 20 Aug. 2018 This relies on wearable sound generators, or small, hearing aid-like devices that emit noises (music, tones, white noise) to help conceal tinnitus, according to the NIDCD. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "What Is Tinnitus?," 30 Jan. 2019 Pick from six sounds: rain, brook, ocean, thunder, white noise, or summer night. Caroline Picard, Good Housekeeping, "I Can’t Sleep Without My Big Red Rooster White Noise Machine," 11 Jan. 2019 Vegas denizens are so accustomed to the sound of slot machines, their brains register them as white noise. Andrea Bennett, Condé Nast Traveler, "Will New Casinos Bring a "MassVegas" to New England?," 17 Dec. 2018 Hair tools drone on like white noise machines, a rack of sequined clothes is wheeled in, music that can be best described as reggae-ish? Mattie Kahn, Glamour, "Bethenny Frankel Doesn't Need to Be Thanked. But She Wouldn't Mind a Little Gratitude From President Trump.," 14 Sep. 2018 Simply plug the unit into any outlet, download the smartphone app, and select from 75 sounds that include white noise, fan sounds, nature sounds, and lullabies. Necee Regis, BostonGlobe.com, "Here, there, and everywhere," 10 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'white noise.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of white noise

1943, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

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Last Updated

25 Mar 2019

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The first known use of white noise was in 1943

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More Definitions for white noise

white noise

noun

Medical Definition of white noise

: a heterogeneous mixture of sound waves extending over a wide frequency range that has been used to mask out unwanted noise interfering with sleep

called also white sound

More from Merriam-Webster on white noise

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with white noise

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about white noise

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