These free tools will give you nice sounds while you work

 

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These free tools will give you nice sounds while you work

Listening to minimalist music helps me get into a working groove. In this post I’m sharing some of my favorite free listening resources. They don’t require you to register, download or buy anything.

Get into a work rhythm with nature sounds

  • Defonic lets you play nature sounds in a browser tab as background for your work. Listen to rain, birds, fire, forest, or evening crickets. Pick one or create your own combination. Defonic’s Ocean Noise Generator has watery soothing sounds like seagulls and waves. Avoid the distracting seal and whale noise.
  • A Soft Murmur also offers a range of sounds. It also lets you set timers and save sound mixes you like. Here’s my waves, wind and white noise mix.

Work as if you’re in a cafe, without leaving your office

  • MyNoise Cafe Restaurant gives you “the noise without the social distraction.” You can even adjust the volume of chatter vs. the amount of kitchen noise.
  • Coffitivity lets you pick a morning murmur, lunchtime lounge or other such coffeeshop atmosphere. The site links to research in the Journal of Consumer Research published by Oxford University Press about how “a moderate level of ambient noise is conducive to creative cognition.”
  • Coffee Shop Sounds is a YouTube video you play in a background browser tab while you work. It’s one of many from the Nomadic Ambience channel, which also has sounds of IcelandJapan, and rain.

Work as if you’re in an office, without leaving home

  • The Sound of Colleagues lets you aurally simulate a corporate workplace without the commute. It was created in response to the pandemic work-from-home period in Sweden. I like the simple sliders for adjusting the audio mix.

Take a break by making music

  • Paratap gives you a micro musical work break. Just tap the screen to make your own sounds. I find it oddly relaxing and it beats doom-scrolling or refreshing my inbox.
  • Sampulator puts 40 different sounds and instruments on the screen, mapped to your keyboard. You can tap keys to mix sounds. Each key you press makes a different sound. Someone made this little song (press play after clicking the link). Think of Ferris Bueller’s sickness keyboard, but without the coughing noises.
  • Chrome Music Lab has 14 delightful music games. I like Kandinsky, which lets you paint onscreen, rendering your strokes as musical sounds. Song Maker is also great. You compose a little song just by dragging the mouse across a grid. Brilliantly simple.

Send someone a musical smile

  • Jazz Keys turns a short message you type into a little melody you can send a friend or colleague. Here’s my message today for you.
  • Typatone lets you send someone a little message with bell-like sounds. Here’s a little tune I typed for you. You can also listen to brief musical messages others have recently added. Here’s how the makers describe their idea: “The act of writing has always been an art. Now it can be an act of music. Each letter you type corresponds to a specific musical note putting a new spin to your composition.”

This article is republished with permission from Wonder Tools, a newsletter that helps you discover the most useful sites and apps. Subscribe here.

 

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