Top Sound Machines Under $25 to Help You Sleep

Choose Your Sound Machine's Features Wisely

Many sleep specialists suggest buying a sound machine as a drug-free solution to sleep issues because they muffle room noise and help soothe you.

In a Consumers Reports survey of 2,021 problem sleepers, sound machines offering white noise or nature sounds like ocean waves and rainfall were found to work almost as well as medication in getting respondents to sleep and improving sleep duration. Of course, a consumer survey is not the same as a double-blind, clinical trial

Sound Machines Have a Variety of Features

All sound machines are not the same. Before you buy, decide on the features you need to get the greatest benefit from your purchase.

Features of sound machines include:

  • the quality of sound
  • the number of sounds
  • whether they have timers
  • the ablity to operate on batteries
  • whether they play back recorded sounds or produce their own white noise

Which Sound Machine Should I Buy?

The sound machine that's best for you might not be the best for someone else. Here are some of the top sound machines and their features to help you decide.


This is my top choice for price and quality of sound.

  • 10 high-quality recordings including white noise, heartbeat, ocean waves, rainfall.
  • Optional 60-minute timer can play all night.
  • Separate on/off and volume switches, so it remains set at your preferred volume.
  • Works with 4 AA batteries or with AC adapter.


This model offers the convenience of a sound machine and alarm clock in one, for your nightstand.

  • Has 10 high-quality sounds including ocean waves, tropical forest, rainfall, and white noise.
  • The digital clock is blue and has a dimmer switch to reduce light in your bedroom.
  • Sound and alarm work independently so you can sleep with one of the sound settings all night long, and still have either a buzzer or radio set to wake you up. 
  • Operates on 4 AA batteries or with AC adapter.


This one is the most compact model; small enough to tuck in a suitcase.

  • Operates on 3 AA batteries only; no AC adapter.
  • Optional timer for 15/30/45 minutes.
  • Four sounds: ocean, rain, dockside, and brook. No white noise but rain setting is similar.
  • Combines on/off and volume switch, so you must adjust the volume each time you turn it on.
  • Sound quality somewhat artificial and metallic, but hey, it's portable.

HoMedics SoundSpa SS 2000

Use caution for this model if ocean waves with the addition of birds intermittently chirping would be distracting.

  • A timer with six sounds, including rainforest and heartbeat options.
  • No white noise setting, though "rain" is similar.
  • Uses 4 AA batteries.
  • Optional timer for 15/30/60 minutes.
  • Lightweight for travel.


This device is especially for babies but the only model with a headphone jack, which is very useful for a hospital stay. 

  • 10 sound options with the ability to combine additional sounds for a total of 24 combinations.
  • No white noise but there are wind (similar to white noise) and womb settings.
  • Uses 4 AA batteries or AC adapter.
  • Optional 60-minute timer.


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