Active Noise Canceling In Cars – Vehicle ANC Work?

Active noise canceling is mostly associated with headphones these days. However, there are more and more people who are looking to reduce sound when they are driving down the road in their car.

Active Noise Canceling in Vehicles? Instead of wearing headphones, which can be dangerous when driving, some companies have active noise-canceling (ANC) technology already installed in the car. ANC technology takes full advantage of your car’s speakers to send a frequency in the cabin that cancels out the constant white noise your engine and road noise creates. 

How Active Noise Canceling (ANC) Work in Cars?

As one might expect, the noise-canceling ability of a car works very similar to headphones, only on a bigger scale. Some microphones are installed inside the cabin of the vehicle that will pick up any sounds and send them to the computer.

This creates sound waves, which can be used to cancel out unwanted noise. When the system figures out what noises are unwanted, they can cancel things out by using an opposite wave.

The beauty of active noise canceling is that a person does not necessarily have the sound system on to use this new type of technology. It will still put out a sound to stay as quiet as possible for those in the cabin.

When there is a wave that cancels out the other, it creates a very flat noise that really does not sound like anything at all to most people. Some active noise canceling setups are better than others, but they all make a pretty big impact on the type of sounds people hear.

Is Noise Canceling In Cars Safe?

The short answer is yes, Active noise canceling in cars is safe, otherwise, it simply wouldn’t be installed in a vehicle. 

Active noise canceling technology in cars is only able to cancel out constant white noise like road noise and engine noise. Horns and emergency vehicle sirens are unable to be canceled out because that type of sound is ever-changing, it is not a constant white noise and will NOT be canceled out. 

ANC technology can actually make your commute safer because you will be able to hear sporadic noises like a police car or ambulances sirens clearer now that you got rid of your own white noise. (Source)

What Also Helps With Active Noise Canceling In Vehicles?


Many new cars that already include active noise canceling will also use acoustic glass for the windshield and side windows.

This is to ensure that everything is maximized inside the car, and people get the best sound possible. This is also available as something to do aftermarket, but keep in mind that it gets to be pretty expensive. 

Another available option is that there can be a seam sealant (Amazon) applied that goes between the body panels of the car. This helps to reduce vibration, sound, and even act as a way to waterproof everything. Once again, this is something that people can do after the fact, and it shows some pretty positive results overall.

The technology used to be limited in that it could only work for a tiny device like headphones. Now, filling the entire cabin with active noise canceling can genuinely be the game-changer plenty of people are looking for.

Will Active Noise Canceling Cancel out the Car Sounds You Like?

Engine noise canceled?

A quiet interior sounds like a great idea for many, but what about those who want to hear the engine roar? Will all the other noises be locked out?

Some automakers are going the route where they are playing music that matches up with certain sounds through the speakers.

For example, recording the sound of an engine and playing it simultaneously as the engine is doing work is one way around this.

Drivers can hear the sound and still feel the satisfaction, and everyone else and outside of the car can listen to it normally.

When a person does not want to hear this, there is an option to turn this feature off. It seems like a good option to have at this point, but it remains to be seen just how much of a demand there will be outside of the sports car world.

Why Is Active Noise Canceling Important In Vehicles?

Driving In Peace With Active Noise Canceling

It might not seem like a big deal when driving, but it is a bit of a luxury feature for many people who simply want to hear what they want to hear.

Instead of having a lot of different distractions while driving down the road, active noise canceling can allow a person to focus and feel like they are in the best setting possible.


Audiophiles are always going to love having the ability to hear music as crystal clear as possible. Sound systems have gone through some overhauls over the years, and people are always looking for the type of music they can really enjoy.

While driving down the road, the experience is truly a great one with solid music choices to rely on. It is more about hearing things clearly with active noise canceling rather than going as loud as possible.

So many people went with very loud sound systems in the past because it was the one way to be able to hear everything. It became a little obnoxious, and some people even received tickets for listening to music too loudly, but now that is not as necessary with active noise canceling.


Whether it is a business or personal call, many people have important conversations while driving down the road. It just makes sense to hear not only the person on the other side but to have spoken word go through as clearly as possible.

It can sometimes get to the point where people can’t talk on the phone in the car if it is too noisy. Active noise canceling can help remedy the situation, allowing for a little more productivity while driving.

The Sound of Silence

Some people use driving down the road to relax and really take everything after a hard day of work. Having many distractions can easily get in the way of a very important time for some people.

This might be their one time to relax and have an easy time driving home, but it gets out of hand in a hurry if different sounds are coming from all around the drive.

Yes, some people will use active noise canceling without any other sounds going on. They want to have things as quiet as possible, and this is the best way to achieve that.

Conversations With Others In The Car

Finally, road noise can get to the point where people have difficulty talking to one another while in the car. An excellent way to fix the situation is to invest in active noise canceling.

It will make for a quieter cabin overall, which means people do not have to scream to each other to have a conversation.

It has always been a problem in certain scenarios where people can’t hear each other, especially if one person is sitting in the back.

Being able to use normal voices instead of having to scream to each other can make things a lot less stressful while driving.

Other Ways Of Canceling Noise In Your Car 

Noise canceling, to some degree, has been around for quite a while. It is just that some of the methods are a little bit more cumbersome than others.

It comes down to how much money a person has, as some of the old methods still do work, but active noise canceling is the best way to go.

While some companies still use a few methods out there, the world has largely changed as time goes on. It still helps to have some of these methods in place, but active noise canceling puts less stress on these features.


Many people know all about adding thick insulation (Amazon) to any car to help with noise to some degree. This insulation can look a little different when installed, it adds quite a bit of bulk to a car as well.

While it works to a certain degree, it is not a type of active noise canceling that some people are looking for in today’s world.

The good news is that for people who want an inexpensive way to help with noise cancellation, this might be the way to go. There are a lot of reasons to look in this direction, as it saves money and is relatively easy to install.


Kilmat Sound Deadening Mat

One of the easiest ways to get rid of the noise in the car is to throw some mats down on the ground. A lot of the noise comes from below, and mats do not even need to have a way to securely stay in place.

Many people will still use soundproofing mats (Amazon) to keep it a little more temperature-controlled and sound from getting out of hand, but active noise canceling is making them irrelevant.

Going The Electronic Method

Active noise canceling is made possible by going with electronic methods of controlling everything. Instead of just muffling the noise the best way possible, it actually cancels out outside noise so that a person gets a clearer sound overall.

Is Active Noise Canceling Inside Cars The Future?

There has been a lot of positive feedback from active noise canceling inside cars so far. People love the fact that they could have a much quieter ride, while still being able to pick up some of the more essential sounds around them.

No one wants to have everything completely shut off when driving because that can feel a bit unsafe. What active noise canceling does is filter out some of the non-important sounds and allows people to hear everything essential.

As technology becomes cheaper, it seems like this will be a feature that shows up with many different cars out there. Some people will not wait and instead install it on an older model, which is fine.

People have long complained about all of the different road noise issues they have. This might be the most effective way to handle things.

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