This article will discuss white noise and the best plugins for generating it.
Let’s start with knowing what white noise is. White noise is a type of noise that contains equal power across all frequencies within a specified range. It is a random signal with a flat frequency response, meaning it has the same energy at every frequency. This type of noise is often used in audio engineering, acoustics, and other fields as a reference signal or for testing purposes.
White noise can be generated using various techniques such as digital signal processing algorithms, analog circuitry, or simply by recording the sound of natural phenomena like waves crashing on a beach. The sound of white noise is often described as a hissing or static-like sound, and it is commonly used to mask other sounds or as a sleep aid to help people fall asleep more easily.
Why do I hear Music in white noise?
Hearing Music or other patterns in white noise is a common phenomenon known as “apophenia,” which refers to the human tendency to perceive meaningful patterns or connections in random or meaningless data. Our brains are wired to make sense of seemingly random sounds by searching for familiar patterns or melodies.
Additionally, some types of white noise may contain harmonic frequencies or other patterns that can create the impression of Music or other sounds. For example, pink noise, which has equal energy in each octave, can sound like a natural waterfall or rain, and some people may interpret these sounds as musical or soothing.
Ultimately, the perception of Music in white noise is subjective and varies from person to person. Some people may hear melodies or patterns that others do not, and individual differences can influence the experience in auditory processing and personal preferences.
4 Tips To Use White Noise When Making Music
- Use white noise for transitions.
White noise can be used to smooth out transitions between different track sections or create a build-up before a drop. By gradually increasing the volume of white noise or opening a filter, you can create tension and anticipation before the next section of the track kicks in.
- Layer white noise with other sounds
White noise can be layered with other sounds to create more complex textures. For example, you could layer white noise with a snare drum or hi-hat to add a sense of brightness or airiness to the percussion.
In addition, by layering white noise with other sounds, you can create a powerful and explosive impact that can signal a change in the track.
- Use filtered white noise for tonal effects.
By applying a filter to white noise, you can create tonal effects that can be used as a background layer or lead sound. You can create interesting sweeps and evolving textures by modulating the filter cutoff.
- Use white noise for spatial effects.
By panning white noise across the stereo field or using it to create a sense of space, you can add depth and dimensionality to your tracks. By experimenting with the placement of white noise, you can create interesting and immersive soundscapes.
5 Best Plugins For White Noise 2023 (And Other Noises)
1. Denise Noize 2
Denise Noize 2 is a plugin designed for music producers and audio engineers to add realistic vinyl and tape noise to their digital recordings, emulating analog recordings’ natural imperfections and character.
The plugin is developed by Denise Audio, a software company specializing in audio processing tools. Noize 2 allows users to adjust the amount and character of noise added to a track and control the frequency range affected by the plugin. It also features a mix knob for blending the processed and unprocessed signals and a limiter to prevent clipping.
The plugin includes various types of noise, such as vinyl crackle, tape hiss, and white noise, as well as the ability to customize and create unique noise profiles. Additionally, it includes a saturation module that can add warmth and harmonics to a track, further emulating the sound of analog recordings.
- Realistic noise emulation
The plugin is designed to accurately emulate various types of noise, such as vinyl crackle, tape hiss, and white noise. It can add these noises to digital recordings, giving them a more authentic analog sound.
- Customizable noise profiles
Noize 2 allows you to create and edit their noise profiles, providing greater control over the type and character of the added noise. This feature allows you to tailor the noise to your needs and preferences.
- Frequency control
The plugin allows you to adjust the frequency range the noise affects, ensuring that the noise does not interfere with the desired sound. This feature is particularly useful when applying the noise to specific frequency ranges, such as the high-end or low-end of a track.
- Saturation module
The saturation module can add warmth and harmonics to a track, further emulating the sound of analog recordings. This feature can provide additional depth and character to a track.
- Mix knob
The mix knob allows you to blend the processed and unprocessed signals, providing a more subtle or prominent effect as needed. This feature allows you to balance the noise level with the original sound.
The plugin includes a limiter to prevent clipping and ensure that the noise is controlled and does not negatively impact the overall sound quality. This feature ensures that the added noise does not cause distortion or unwanted effects.
- Visual feedback
The plugin provides visual feedback through a noise waveform, allowing you to see and adjust the noise profile in real time. This feature can help you fine-tune the noise settings to achieve the desired sound.
Denise Noize 2 is a plugin compatible with Windows and Mac OS operating systems and supports VST, AAX, and AU plugin formats. It is compatible with most major digital audio workstations (DAWs), including Ableton Live, Logic Pro X, Pro Tools, FL Studio, Cubase, Pro Tools, and Studio One.
However, compatibility may vary depending on the specific version of the DAW and operating system being used. You should always check the plugin’s compatibility with its specific setup before purchasing or installing it. Ensure that the plugin and its DAW are up-to-date to ensure continued compatibility.
Denise Noize 2 is a plugin that emulates the sound of vinyl crackle, tape hiss, and white noise, providing a realistic analog sound to digital recordings. It is compatible with Windows and Mac OS and supports VST, AAX, and AU plugin formats. It is compatible with most major DAWs, but compatibility may vary depending on the specific version of the DAW and operating system being used.
The plugin allows you to customize noise profiles, adjust frequency range, and add saturation for added warmth and character. It also includes a mix knob and limiter for greater control and provides visual feedback for real-time adjustments. The added noise may not be suitable for all genres or styles of Music and may not always sound completely natural or authentic.
2. AudioThing Noises (Noise Generator)
The latest plug-in from Hainbach and AudioThing investigates the art of noise.
There have been several plugins in the past that introduce noise to a pure signal. These may include the needle sound on the recording, saturation distortion, or tape noise. Noise is unique because it provides far more than simply an auditory effect.
When you initially launch the plugin, it has a lovely appearance. Some of us are obsessed with anything with a retro aesthetic, and this GUI is straightforward yet has tons of personality. The eight buttons that form a row below the pseudo-illuminated center dial function together. The noises are samples that are kept in banks of eight.
The pitch is unaffected by keyboard notes. However, it is affected by the note’s gate. The noises may be activated from the keyboard to produce rhythmic pulses that fit your Music, or they can be set to a permanent trigger state, in which case they rumble away. The interface generates much of the pitch and its rhythmic content, but you may also play rhythms simply using the keyboard.
Its middle keypad trip is the focus of the Trip segment. When the dial is in Pendulum mode, it swings back and forth while playing triggered noises. Selecting the note value with the Speed button may be synchronized to your DAW. Additionally, a synchronizable random mode causes the dial to hop between different positions.
It has a simple envelope that allows for more creative control. Still, its filter component also offers four other types of filters in 2-pole configurations that let you alter the incoming noise. The highly effective downsampling and bit-crunching portion allow you to combine unaffected and altered data.
Noise has a huge range of presets and 22 different noise banks. The banks include noise, such as radio transmissions, traffic recordings, and military signals. Synthesizers also use noise banks to produce noise or notes inside a specified chord. Additionally, you may create and import your banks of whatever sound you like.
This plugin is available for Windows 10 or higher and macOS X 10.11 or higher, 64-bit. It comes in VST 2/3 and AU formats.
This results in a really specific plugin that is excellent for producing textures and pulses. If you thought the noise was monotonous, reconsider! Noises add a great new way to mess up your sound. A distinctive plugin that works well for making textures and pulses. If you thought the noise was monotonous, reconsider!
3. MeldaProduction MNoiseGenerator
MeldaProduction MNoiseGenerator is a plugin that generates various types of noise for music production and sound design.
It includes a range of customizable parameters such as noise frequency, amplitude, stereo spread, filtering, and modulation effects. The plugin also features randomization and morphing capabilities, allowing for the creation of unique noise patterns.
Its user-friendly interface and compatibility with most major digital audio workstations make it a popular choice for sound designers and music producers looking to add noise-based sound effects to their productions.
- Various noise types
The plugin can generate different types of noise, including white, pink, brown, and more. You can select the type of noise they want to generate from a dropdown menu.
- Customizable parameters
MNoiseGenerator provides a range of parameters for controlling the generated noise, including frequency, amplitude, and stereo spread. You can also apply filtering and modulation effects to shape further and manipulate the noise.
- Randomization & Morphing
The plugin includes a randomization feature that generates new, randomized noise patterns with the click of a button. You can also adjust the degree of randomness to fine-tune the resulting noise. The plugin also allows you to morph smoothly between two different noise patterns, creating new, unique textures.
- User-friendly interface
The plugin features a clear and intuitive interface that makes it easy to navigate and control. You can adjust parameters using knobs, sliders, and other graphical elements.
MeldaProduction MNoiseGenerator is a plugin compatible with most major digital audio workstations (DAWs), including Ableton Live, Logic Pro X, Pro Tools, and more. It supports Windows and Mac operating systems and comes in VST, VST3, AU, and AAX formats, making it highly versatile and accessible to users across different platforms.
MeldaProduction MNoiseGenerator is a plugin for generating and manipulating different types of noise in music production and sound design. It offers various customizable parameters, including frequency, amplitude, and stereo spread, and features randomization and morphing capabilities for creating unique noise patterns.
Lastly, it has a user-friendly interface compatible with most major digital audio workstations.
4. AudioThing Wires
The response of this recorder produced an exceptional and infrequent delay effect that became a magic lo-fi-maker.
Wires feature a distinctive set of controls, effect modules, and a clipping limiter for the output. In addition, the plugin has a resizable window and includes start and stop effects, a preset randomizer, and more. This plugin is like a holy grail for lo-fi producers, so let’s check it out!
- Sound design tool
Use Wires to create several textures, tones, and effects, adjusting and combining each section. For example, you can add analog distortion and harmonic excitation and tailor an analog effect or texture in detail. In addition, randomizable settings can make your life easier whenever you get stuck.
- Ideal for lo-fi
The detailed yet straightforward knob-based interface makes achieving lo-fi sounds and textures easy. The plugin includes two unique knobs: drops and clicks, that facilitate the achievement of a nice-sounding lo-fi vibe.
Wires include a soft clipping limiter with prefixed values at the end of the “Master” section, which acts as an output trimmer. The limiter lets you hit the plugin more confidently and get extreme effects without clipping the output.
You have a lot of freedom to get creative and combine different things from every module. Play around combining distortion, delay, and flange with the typical noises of the tape machine’s mechanics and imperfections to create unique textures.
Wires by Audio Thing is available for Windows 7 or higher and macOS 10.10 or higher, 64-bit only. It comes in VST 2/3, AU, and AAX formats.
This is a particularly odd model of an analog piece. The non-linearities of this emulation are incredibly detailed and perfectly achieved, for example, the wow/flutter inconsistencies and the randomness of the drops and other noises.
In addition, the tilt EQ, which can boost high frequencies (to the left) or low frequencies (to the right), is great to compensate for the high-frequency cuts that come with both types of devices.
Overall it produces significant lo-fi effects and can be used for sound design purposes to make cool effects and filters that you probably wouldn’t get if not for this specific plugin. It’s very original, sounds outstandingly good, and is a dream come true for lo-fi producers.
5. CBA Sounds Noisss (Free)
CBA Sounds Noisss is a free plugin that generates different types of noise, including white, pink, and brown noise, as well as synthetic noise and glitch effects.
The plugin features a simple interface that allows you to control the noise frequency and amplitude and additional filtering and modulation effects to shape and manipulate the noise. It also includes a randomization feature that generates new, randomized noise patterns.
- Various types of noise
One of the key features of this plugin is its ability to generate different types of noise, including white noise, pink noise, brown noise, synthetic noise, and glitch effects. This allows you to create a wide range of sounds, from smooth, ambient textures to glitchy, distorted effects.
- Customizable parameters
You can adjust the frequency and amplitude of the generated noise and apply filtering effects to shape the sound. The plugin also includes a modulation feature that allows you to create complex, evolving noise patterns.
- Randomization features
With the click of a button, the plugin can generate new, randomized noise patterns, making it easy to experiment with different sounds and textures. The randomization feature can be applied to individual parameters or the entire plugin, allowing you to easily generate a wide range of unique sounds.
- Intuitive & Free of cost
CBA Sounds Noisss is also designed to be easy to use, with a simple and intuitive interface that makes it easy to navigate and adjust the various parameters. On top of that, it offers all these advanced features free of cost.
CBA Sounds Noisss is a free plugin available in VST format. It is compatible with most all digital audio workstations on Windows and Mac operating systems that can host VST plugins. The minimum operating system requirement for the plugin is Windows 7 (and above) or Mac OS Sierra (and above).
CBA Sounds Noisss is a free noise generation plugin that offers a range of customizable parameters for creating different types of noise, including white noise, pink noise, brown noise, synthetic noise, and glitch effects. It also includes a randomization feature, making experimenting with different sounds and textures easily.
The plugin has low CPU usage, making it efficient and practical for various projects. With its ease of use, versatility, and affordability, CBA Sounds Noisss is a popular choice for sound designers and music producers looking to add texture and interest to their productions.
Serum (Synth with flexible Noise oscillator that comes with lots of presets)
Serum, by Xfer Records, is a favorite among electronic music artists due to its remarkable user-friendliness.
With Serum’s quality-oriented workflow, creating, editing, and manipulating wavetables is effortless. Additionally, whenever you import an audio file into Serum, it will analyze and divide it into unique waveforms that you can use as wavetables within the synth. Then, you can warp and modulate the waveforms to your liking, and when they’re done, the plugin offers a 10-effect rack that eliminates the need for more plugins in your signal chain.
- Filter Types
The plugin offers four filter categories: Normal, Multi, Flanges, and Miscellaneous. You’ll get a large set of filter presets for each, and the numbers beside their names represent how steep the cutoff curve is. In addition to engaging the filter for oscillators, the sub, and the noise engines, you can use note-tracking to keep the filter in tune with every new note.
The plugin lets you see and hear the main wavetable and offers different layers of the same sound, depending on how many Unison voices you selected.
- Copy LFOs and Envelopes
Hold down “alt” (“option” on the Mac) while clicking on the ENV or LFO top bar and dragging it to another one beside it. That will copy the entire shape and its parameters onto the new slot. You can do the same process to copy an LFO or Envelope shape into any oscillator if you want to. That will create a custom wavetable with the same pattern as the source.
Sound & Usability:
With its two main oscillators, plus a sub and a noise generator, Serum provides a wide range of sonic possibilities. Unfortunately, even though its single filter has several presets and attractive controls, such as fat and drive, it lacks in number. If we could have a dedicated filter for each main oscillator, Serum would probably be better positioned on our list.
However, usability-wise, Serum is as easy as they come. Playing around with Serum’s knobs when sculpting your sound is fun. Additionally, the controls are appropriately named, which improves the user experience.
This plugin is available for macOS 10.11 and newer and Windows 7 and higher as a VST, AU, and AAX plugin.
It’s easy to understand how Serum got its famed status. Looking at it, you immediately know what you need to do. And truth be told, you can create great sounds even if you’re not that experienced. Overall, this user-friendly plugin deserves a place in your collection.
We have discussed all the plugins for noise generation and their unique features and capabilities. In conclusion, go for the Denise Noize 2 if you are looking for a plugin that emulates natural imperfections and character of analog recordings, with customizable noise profiles, frequency control, saturation module, mix knob, limiter, and visual feedback.
Plus, it is compatible with most major digital audio workstations and supports VST, AAX, and AU plugin formats. On the other hand, AudioThing Noises focuses on the art of noise, providing rhythmic pulses and a wide range of presets with a simple yet personality-filled GUI. Both plugins offer unique features that cater to different preferences and music genres.
Next, Noisss by CBA Sounds is a great free plugin for noise generation that you can use if you have budget constraints. Lastly, Serum by Xfer Records is a wavetable and granular synth with a great granular synth engine and the ability to load samples and generate noise creatively, flexibly, and musically.
I hope the article was of help. Thank you for reading.
Shaurya Bhatia, is an Indian Music Producer, Composer, Rapper & Performer, who goes by the stage name MC SNUB, and is also 1/2 of the Indian pop music duo, called “babyface”. A certified Audio Engineer & Music Producer, and a practicing musician & rapper for more than 6 years, Shaurya has worked on projects of various genres and has also been a teaching faculty at Spin Gurus DJ Academy.