How to Get Great Sleep While Traveling:
Pack a Mini Sound Machine

By: Emily McCrary-Ruiz-Esparza Sleep

Disclosure: House Method was provided with free product in exchange for our review. All thoughts and opinions expressed herein are those of our editorial team.

The Marpac Rohm

Marpac, known as maker of the newly designed Dohm sound machine and now the Yogabed mattress, makes two portable sound machines: the Rohm and the Hushh.

Marpac is the OG maker of sound machines, and they’re clearly good at what they do, but do their mini machines hold up just as well? So on a recent trip to Chicago, I packed the Rohm and put it to the test.

Look and feel: Rohm travel sound machine

The Rohm is small, a two-inch-thick disc roughly the circumference of an orange. The little guy even looks calming: soft white with misty blue accents. It fades nicely into the landscape of my bedroom at home. It packs seamlessly into my carry-on and I had no trouble getting it through airport security.

It comes with a soft blue lanyard so it can be hung on a hook or a doorknob.  

Rohm The Marpac Rohm portable sound machine

The Rohm on the go: performance

I checked into a busy downtown Chicago hotel and discovered that my room shared a wall with the elevator shaft. It was a busy hotel, so every three to five minutes—at all hours of the night—I would hear the bang, grind, and low whir of the elevator pulleying past the head of the bed.

OK Rohm, work your magic.

The Rohm really did serve me well. I was surprised by how loud this tiny device was. At full volume, it was more than enough to mask the noise from the elevator. Higher-pitched noises, though, it did not drown quiet out as well: I could still occasionally hear voices from the hallway. If you live in an urban setting where you deal with all kinds of noise 24/7, you might consider a sound machine with more noise options to ensure you’re masking all disturbances.

I stayed in Chicago for three nights and I could really tell the difference in my quality of sleep. I’m not one to sleep soundly in hotel beds (I do a lot of tossing and turning), but I did notice a difference in how much I moved throughout the night. The Rohm really did help me stay asleep longer, and a fully charged battery lasted all night.

Rohm The Marpac Rohm is compact and packs nicely into a carry-on bag

Marpac Rohm: noise options

The Rohm has three sounds:

Deep white

This one is a easily my favorite. It’s a fan on the windowsill in the summertime. The house is quiet, someone is taking a nap, a bit of sunshine is coming in through window. I’ve taken to bringing the little guy to the office with me and setting him on my desk with deep white in the background. It’s a nice treat with my afternoon tea.

Bright white

This one is reminiscent of being in an airplane at 30,000 feet. I didn’t get a positive reaction when I played it for the House Method team, but I did find two friends (coincidentally, who travel for work), who liked bright white just fine.

Gentle surf

Exactly what it sounds like: gentle ocean waves. This sound is very consistent and steady, unlike most white noise machines or apps with an ocean setting. Highly recommend.

Pros and cons of the Marpac Rohm travel noise machine

Pros Cons
Lightweight, packable
Great battery life No timer
Big sound for such a little guy Masks lower noises better than higher ones
Mini-USB charging (cord included), so no batteries needed!

Hushh The Marpac Hushh portable sound machine

The Marpac Hushh mini sound machine

The sister to the Rohm is the Hushh, which Marpac has designed to help babies and little ones fall asleep and stay asleep. It’s the same size, shape, and weight (less than four ounces) as the Rohm and it also has the same sound settings.

The Hushh is gray with neon green accents, and unlike the Rohm, it has a child lock on the side so little ones can’t change the settings.

The Hushh performs just as well as the Rohm does. If you’re deciding between the two, the only differences you’ll find are the colors, the child lock, and the lanyard. Instead of a soft blue lanyard, the Hushh has a flexible plastic ring, which doesn’t afford quite as many hanging options as the Rohm’s lanyard.

Marpac Rohm and Hushh specs

Price: $34.95

Power: Mini-USB charging

Dimensions: 3.5″ x 1.8″ x 3.5″

Weight: 3.84 ounces

Warranty: One-year limited factory warranty and the Marpac customer service promise


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