White noise is a common remedy for sensitive sleepers and easily distracted writers on deadline, but it’s not the only option for drowning out the attention-diverting sounds of life. No, we’re not talking about music or a nature-sounds machine; we’re talking about other sound signals on the color spectrum.
In the above installment of SciShow, host Michael Aranda shines a light on two lesser-known types of static noise: pink and brown. Like white noise, pink and brown noises contain sounds from all frequencies. The difference is that they turn down the volume on higher ones to make the overall pitch deeper and more balanced. If you find white noise too tinny, consider pink or brown (which is the bassiest) as soothing alternatives.
Other color noises include blue, violet, and grey, all of which help to counteract our brain’s tendency to perk up when there’s a change in sound in the surrounding area.
For more, check out the video above, which even touches on something called a “brown note” which is sometimes wrongly rumored to cause a rumble in your bowels (the name is coincidental).
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