10 Best Quiet Generator: Definitive Review (& Buyers Guide) (2020)

Join Us In This Journey To Pick A Quiet Generator Here Are The Best 10 On The Market Today

Champion 3400-Watt Dual Fuel Generator
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Yamaha EF2000iSv2
topnotchoutdoor award

Honda EU3000i
28

Models Reviewed

174

Hours Of
Research

124

Field Test
Hours

83

Users
Surveyed

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This is the Ultimate TopNotch Comprehensive Review and Buyers Guide to the Quietest Generators of 2020.

We checked out 23 of the best generators on the market and after much deliberation we honed this down to ten. We researched for 12 hours, spent 96 hours in the field testing these generators and we surveyed 7 users.

To put it mildly, we did our homework.

In this guide we’ll discuss the following topics:

  • Three best most quiet generators to choose
  • A comparative review of the top products
  • What the TopNotch experts think of these generators and how they performed in our side by side tests
  • The best features of each
  • Expert tips for buying
  • Lots more…

Do you want to know about the noise levels before choosing a generator for your next camping trip?

We’re here to tell you all that and more.

So hold on tight as we start the journey.

Silence, peace, stillness.

Three things to look forward to if you’re heading outdoors for a camping trip.

But deep down you know, there’s more to it than that.

So when the TopNotch team went out to review ten of the quietest generators on the market our objective was simple.

For us, it wasn’t just about the lowest noise level.

But, also about getting the right balance of the best features needed in an outdoor generator.

So what’s my point?

It’s simple. The main purpose of portable generators is to deliver the right supply of juice to use when you need it.

Even the best quiet generator won’t be any use if the power supply isn’t reliable.

Also, there are features like durability, price, and portability. Each has an important role in the overall selection of a dependable generator.

Handling ten different products and testing each parameter – especially noise levels – wasn’t easy.

In the next stage, we compared and analyzed the data to select the top 3.

But…

When you enjoy doing something it always turns out to be a lot of fun in the end – and this was no exception – helped along as we were with a few beers and a bit of banter of course.

The objective of our effort was to provide a means for choosing the right product in a few simple steps.

And that’s just what we did.

So stick with me here. I’ve loads of interesting stuff coming up for you.

Best Quiet Dual Fuel Generator

1 – Dual Fuel Inverter Generator – Champion 3400-Watt Dual Fuel Generator

Editors Choice Award Winner
Dual Fuel Inverterir?t=topnotch096 20&language=en US&l=li3&o=1&a=B01FAWMMEY

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Value for Money
9
Output Power
9
Durability & Workmanship
8
Dependability & Reliability
8
Noise
8
Overall Score
84
  • Manufacturer: Champion Power Equipment
  • Dimension: 18.30 x 25.10 x 17.30 in
  • Weight: 95.70 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 7.5 Hours
  • Wattage: 3400

Bottom Line : A great package with solid power delivery offering excellent value for money

Pros


  • Dual Fuel – Runs on GAS or PROPANE straight out of the box
  • Push-button electric start
  • Top class durability
  • Steady power delivery

Cons


  • Weight is pretty high
  • Noisier than the other chart toppers

One reason we love Champion portable generators is they offer excellent value.

And you know what?

They also offer TopNotch durability and superb performance.

The Champion 3400 ticked all the boxes in terms of performance and practical features.

We loved the fact that it’s a dual-fuel generator. You can use gasoline or liquid propane gas to run it.

Next, there were advanced features like a smart economy mode and cold start technology.

Also, it’s parallel ready.

Beyond that, you get an electric start that makes operation super easy.

The portable inverter generator was also RV-ready and overall operation was very simple

Even with the high power output, noise levels were well controlled. It’ll easily meet the noise restrictions in National Parks at moderate load.

Champion offers 3-years of limited warranty with the device.

Now even with the wheel and the foldaway handle, it might not be the best portable device for campers out there.

But for use in your home, RV, or even a construction site, it’s simply a superb generator.

Read Full Review: Champion 3400W Generator

Quiet Generator For Camping

2 – Yamaha EF2000iSv2

Best Value Award Winner
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Value for Money
9
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
9
Dependability & Reliability
9
Noise
9
Overall Score
90
  • Manufacturer: Yamaha
  • Dimension: 17.90 x 19.30 x 11.00 in
  • Weight: 44.10 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 10.5h
  • Wattage: 2000 watt

Bottom Line : A TopNotch all-rounder that comes with the trademark Yamaha dependability and excellent versatility

Pros


  • Dependable generator
  • Very good portability
  • Superb engine performance
  • Advanced features

Cons


  • Power delivery is moderate

Yamaha is another brand that really scores high in terms of product reliability.

And the EF2000iSv2 portable inverter generator proved the point well.

Quite simply, you can really depend on it to give you a smooth output – with its eyes shut.

Trust me. It’s that good.

Yamaha has equipped it with a whole range of advanced features that we loved.

For example, there was the smart throttle technology and the pulse width modulation (PWM) control.

The Yamaha OHV engine was an excellent performer that made the generator super fuel efficient. Even with a relatively small fuel tank, it’ll run for hours.

This is another generator-on-wheels and one of the lightest products we tested.

And the result is…

Excellent portability.

Besides, this generator won’t bother you with noise even if you stretch it to its limits.

It’s also parallel ready. If you need more juice, just join two of these generators with a special cable.

What about the warranty?

You get a 3-Years of limited warranty against part defects and workmanship.

On the whole, if your power requirements are moderate, this is one of the best choices for home use or camping.

Read Full Review: Yamaha EF2000iSv2 Generator

Best Small Quiet Generators

3 – Honda EU3000i

Top Pick Award Winner
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Value for Money
7
Output Power
9
Durability & Workmanship
9
Dependability & Reliability
9
Noise
10
Overall Score
88
  • Manufacturer: Honda
  • Dimension: 16.90 x 19.90 x 18.20 in
  • Weight: 131.00 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 20 Hours
  • Wattage: 2800 watts

Bottom Line : With superb power delivery and super quiet performance, it’s one of the best generators available

Pros


  • Superb efficiency.
  • Excellent range of feature
  • Great fuel efficiency
  • Honda reliability

Cons


  • A pricey device
  • No electric start

Without a doubt, Honda is a brand that bats it out of the park in terms of reliability.

The Honda EU3000i isn’t just one of the best generators that are quiet but also a top performer in other important metrics.

Also, the advanced technology makes it one of the best inverter generators you’ll find.

It’s designed to provide a pure sine wave output that’s perfect for all your electronics.

The TopNotch Honda GX160 engine delivered solid fuel-efficiency. Moreover, the 3000 watts of peak power can easily handle larger equipment.

Yes, it’s good enough for that 15,000 BTU air conditioner in your RV too.

The power to weight ratio was TopNotch and, here’s the best part…

The device came with a recessed wheel and folding handles.

Was it silent?

You bet!

It gave us super quiet performance even at high load.

Obviously, it comes with a high price tag but you do get superb value for money.

In addition, you also get a 3-year long domestic and commercial warranty.

Now, I can go on about this prince of portable generators, but check out our detailed TopNotch product review to find out more.

Read Full Review:  Honda EU3000i Generator

Go to Analysis, Comparisons & Ratings

Best Quiet Inverter Generator

4 – Atima Generator

atima

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Value for Money
7
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
7
Dependability & Reliability
8
Noise
9
Overall Score
78
  • Manufacturer: Atima
  • Dimension: 19.31 x 20.88 x 12.21 in
  • Weight: 47.41 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 10.3h at ¼ load
  • Wattage: 2000 watt

Bottom Line : A well-designed portable inverter generator that’s easy to use and reliable

Pros


  • Great Portability
  • Easy to use
  • Good fuel efficiency
  • Easy to maintain

Cons


  • High price
  • Customer service isn’t the best

Now, Atima wasn’t a brand we were overly familiar with.

But it turned pretty much all of the TopNotch reviewers (myself included) from doubters to admirers.

And that begs the obvious question – how?

Quite simply, Atima has done a smart thing here.

They’ve used a TopNotch Yamaha MZ80 engine in their generator.

As a result, the overall performance and fuel efficiency were top-grade. It also throws in the smart throttle technology that delivers a high running time with a modest fuel tank capacity.

We loved the smart design and rugged aluminum outer frame that keeps it lightweight.

In case you need more juice, it’s also parallel ready for connecting with other generators.

The product is also backed by a 2-year warranty.

Last but not least, the noise levels were well controlled. Thanks to the Yamaha engine.

We only wished it was priced slightly lower to offer a bit more value for money.

3500 Watt Super Quiet Inverter Generator

5 – Predator 3500 Generator

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Value for Money
7
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
8
Dependability & Reliability
7
Noise
7
Overall Score
74
  • Manufacturer: Predator
  • Dimension: 20.00 x 22.75 x 17.30 in
  • Weight: 110.00 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 11h at 25% load
  • Wattage: 3500 watt

Bottom Line : Easy to use and efficient, this is among the best portable generators providing a high and clean power delivery

Pros


  • Ideal for powering RVs and home emergencies.
  • Smooth electric start
  • TopNotch running time

Cons


  • Weight is on the higher side
  • High maintenance requirements

While you can’t expect Honda-level of efficiency from all portable generators, the Predator 3500 makes a good effort.

Here’s why.

The 3500 Watts of surge power is great for running heavier equipment.

Next, the air-cooled OHV gas engine delivered a powerful and efficient performance.

In addition, it had an LCD screen displaying all the important information.

The portable inverter generator had the right range of features when it came to safety.

You get low oil shutoff, an overload indicator, and an inverter that makes it safe for small electronics.

Also, a 90-day long warranty period is offered against material and workmanship defects.

Admittedly, it wasn’t the quietest generator. But, the sound levels are within the 57dB rating when output is at the lower end.

However, it was a heavy device and even with four casters, not the best choice for the rugged outdoors.

Quiet Propane Generator

6 – Sportsman Generator

sportsman generator
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Value for Money
7
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
7
Dependability & Reliability
5
Noise
6
Overall Score
66
  • Manufacturer: Sportsman Series
  • Dimension: 17.50 x 23.00 x 17.00 in
  • Weight: 88.00 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 10h at 50% load
  • Wattage: 4000 watt

Bottom Line : A generator that hits the high power band and is a good choice for buyers on a budget

Pros


  • Powered by propane
  • Very high surge output
  • Great safety features
  • Affordable price tag

Cons


  • A heavy device
  • Not CARB compliant

Not everyone has the budget for a Honda or a Yamaha.

The Sportsman GEN4000LP generator is a good choice if that’s the case.

And most importantly, it runs on propane.

Here’s why that’s important…

Firstly the engine stayed clean and fuel efficiency was great. Next, the overall carbon emissions are very low, resulting in a better engine lifespan.

In terms of safety, you get a low oil shutdown along with an automatic voltage regulator. Two very important features to safeguard the engine.

And the best part is…

The low price. It’s one affordable generator that offers a high power output.

The generator is covered by a 1-year limited warranty. However, for commercial and rental use, the warranty is just 30 days.

Coming on to the noise levels, it wasn’t super quiet. But the performance was acceptable at 25% load.

All in all, if you prefer propane as fuel, take a good look at this one.

Quiet Generator

 7 – Smarter Tools Generator

smarter tools
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Value for Money
6
Output Power
7
Durability & Workmanship
6
Dependability & Reliability
6
Noise
7
Overall Score
64
  • Manufacturer: Smarter Tools
  • Dimension: 18.25 x 19.75 x 11.25 in
  • Weight: 47.00 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 10h
  • Wattage: 2000 watt

Bottom Line : A generator that offers excellent noise suppression and a range of practical features

Pros


  • Comes with a Yamaha engine
  • Lightweight design
  • A parallel ready device
  • Advanced muffler design

Cons


  • High price
  • Issues with customer service

This was another generator that came with some excellent features.

The first thing is…

It has a USB port. That’s one rare feature of generators in this category.

Next, it’s well-designed and easy to use. In addition, there are features like LED indicators, a fuel petcock, and a USFS approved spark arrestor.

One more thing…

This was the second option to come with a Yamaha engine. Yes, it’s the dependable MZ80 again.

The pure sine wave in the output means a safe power supply for sensitive electronics.

The noise level at lower loads was well controlled.

Not to forget, you get a 3-years of limited warranty with the generator.

But the problem was…

At higher outputs, it wasn’t the quietest generator.

In addition to that, according to user feedback the customer service can be unreliable at times.

Still, if you want to look beyond our Top Picks, it’s worth checking out.

Quietest Generator

 8 – Westinghouse Generator

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Value for Money
8
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
6
Dependability & Reliability
6
Noise
8
Overall Score
72
  • Manufacturer: Westinghouse
  • Dimension: 17.80 x 20.30 x 12.50 in
  • Weight: 43.00 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 13h at 1.3-gallon tank
  • Wattage: 1800 watt

Bottom Line : A feature-rich generator that offers great value and excellent noise suppression

Pros


  • Extremely Quiet
  • Highly Fuel Efficient
  • Good noise insulation
  • Affordable price

Cons


  • Power output is limited

The name Westinghouse has been around a long time and this generator has the right features to maintain the brand’s reputation.

After all our tests, we agreed on one thing…

The price to performance ratio was simply TopNotch.

To start with, the Westinghouse OHV 4-stroke engine gave a reliable power supply.

The specs mentioned 13 hours of run-time on a fully loaded fuel tank. In our tests, we found the performance touching that mark.

Then again, the excellent portability made it a good choice for camping.

Coming to the warranty period…

You get 3-year long and 1-year long limited warranties for residential and commercial use respectively.

For what it’s worth, the generator gave good quiet operation.

However, on closer inspection, we did note some issues with workmanship and durability.

If your power needs are moderate, this portable inverter generator is a good pick.

Read Full Review: Westinghouse Generator

Quiet Generator For RV

 9 – Champion 3100-watt Inverter Generator

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Value for Money
8
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
7
Dependability & Reliability
8
Noise
9
Overall Score
80
  • Manufacturer: Champion Power Equipment
  • Dimension: 18.30 x 22.40 x 17.30 in
  • Weight: 94.80 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 8h at 25% load
  • Wattage: 3100

Bottom Line : Another great product from Champion with great fuel efficiency and solid reliability

Pros


  • Good engine performance
  • EPA and CARB compliant
  • Great ease of use
  • A 3-year warranty

Cons


  • Weight was on the higher side
  • The wheels were a bit smaller

This is the second product from the house of Champion.

The good news is…

It packs all the good features of the first model that we loved.

In fact, it’s a great choice for people with slightly lower power needs.

The 171cc single-cylinder engine from Champion was a top performer.

To make the best use of the fuel tank capacity, just shift to the smart economy mode.

Also, the overall design made it super user-friendly.

The noise levels stayed well below 60dB at 50% load making it a good choice for home use or campsites.

It comes with the standard offering from Champion- a 3-year long limited warranty and lifetime long free technical support.

On the other hand, the power to weight ratio was on the higher side. Even the U-shaped handle and the wheels didn’t make the handling any easier really.

Quiet Diesel Generator

 10 – Durostar Generator

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Value for Money
7
Output Power
8
Durability & Workmanship
8
Dependability & Reliability
7
Noise
8
Overall Score
76
  • Manufacturer: DuroStar
  • Dimension: 30.30 x 37.80 x 22.00 in
  • Weight: 305.00 lbs
  • Load Run Time: 12h at ½ load
  • Wattage: 6000 watt

Bottom Line : A great choice for those who need more power as a complete backup for their home or construction sites

Pros


  • High power output
  • Comes with remote start feature
  • TopNotch safety features
  • Superior quality alternator

Cons


  • Only for heavy users
  • Low warranty period

If more power’s what you need, this mini-monster from Durostar should do the job.

With 5500 Watts of continuous power and a 3.83-gallon fuel tank, it can easily power heavy loads for a long time.

Other than that, you get a top-class alternator and features like an automatic voltage regulator and low oil shutoff.

With this much power, we expected a high noise level. But surprisingly, Durostar has done a great job with the muffler design and soundproofing.

And guess what?

There were anti-vibration pads to reduce the vibrations of the heavy engine.

In addition, choose between a wireless remote start and an electric start.

One more thing…

It’s backed by a 3-year long limited warranty.

However, size and weight didn’t make it totally suitable for camping.

Also, it’ll be simply too big for most RV owners.

The point is, it’s designed for a specific band of customers.

Read Full Review: DuroStar Generator

Why Trust Us?

The goal of the TopNotch team is simple:

To test, analyze, and rate every product in the best possible manner to provide accurate and honest ratings.

While the most challenging part (the most exciting too) is the testing phase, it’s just one of the many steps we take.

In this case, we took out the faithful RV again.

After a lot of debate, Blue Ridge Parkway National Park was our chosen destination. It’s tough work but someone has to do it.

After our weekend trip, we had all the data we needed to judge the performance of each of the quiet generators.

Smallest Generator FI

The winter chill gave an edge to the morning data collections, but as a bonus, we got some awesome views.

While our review team tested and compiled the data, the in-house team was just as busy. They gathered customer feedback, sifted through many reviews, cross checked the details, and compiled the data to give shape to the review.

We have a variety of experts in our team who are also outdoor enthusiasts. Yours truly is one with close to two decades of hiking and camping experience.

Also, we had our own DIY expert for this trip who is a veteran in handling generators and IC engines.

All this effort to provide a means for our readers to make the right choice.

At the end of the day, it’s all about you.

Skip Buyer’s Guide – Go to Analysis, Comparisons & Ratings

Buyers Guide:

How To Choose The Best Quiet Generator

10 Best Quiet Generator

What are the different types of quiet generators?

Generators provide a means to get the topside of frequent power outages or to keep your gadgets juiced up at the campsite.

But they sometimes aren’t the quietest of machines.

Point to be noted: there are no set standards to measure the acceptable noise level of generators.

Now, quiet generators can come in various types. So let’s look at some common ones.

  • Portable generators come with an internal combustion engine that’s mostly powered by gas or diesel. Naturally, the best part is you can carry them around anywhere, on and off your property. At the same time, they’re mostly plug-and-play without any need for installation.
  • Inverter generators convert AC power to DC and then back to AC. Basically, this is done through the combination of alternator and rectifier. More importantly, the output power has fewer harmonic distortions, making them great for sensitive electronics. The portable inverter generators are not only more efficient but also quieter.
  • Standby generators are larger units that automatically take over when the grid power supply fails. They are large capacity generators with special muffler designs. Mostly, they are used in apartments, hospitals, and various commercial establishments. For even larger places, ruggedly designed industrial generators are used.
  • Lastly, we come to solar generators that generate power through solar cells. The truth is, they’re the quietest generators of the lot as they come without any engine. The main component is a battery to store the power and the same is delivered through an inverter. However, they don’t give the same power levels as gas-powered generators.

Features to look out for

When you’re looking for generators low on noise level, set your priorities right. To start with, establish your wattage needs. Next, fix a budget. Then read our guide and choose yours.

With a variety of options on the market, things can get confusing for a first-time buyer. That’s why we’ve provided options from a wide price range in our Top Ten List.

So let’s take a look at some important features.

  • The first step is to understand how noise level is measured and what values define loudness. Normal breathing is just 10 dB and a soft whisper is around 30dB. Normal conversation is usually around the 60dB mark. Any noise beyond 70dB can be uncomfortable. In case it crosses the 80 dB mark, it can cause hearing damage. Generally, with a higher engine speed the noise level will rise.
  • Keep a note of the decibel levels. Most sound levels are measured at a distance of 23 feet (7 meters). As a basic rule of physics, sound levels decrease by 6 dB, every time the distance from the source doubles. Does the decibel levels of a generator tell the entire story of its noise level? Not always. In many cases, the quoted numbers are at a fraction of the power capacity. So, make sure to check the noise levels at full power.
  • Check out the features used to control the noise level. Most portable inverter generators have low noise levels. Some brands use special muffler designs to limit the noise. In many cases, the casing is lined with insulation, or anti vibration pads are used.
  • The simple truth is, noise levels will depend on power output. Still, even at the same power output, the noise level of two different generator brands can vary. The reason? The engine quality and muffler design. A top-class Yamaha engine will definitely operate at a lower noise level. At the same time, the load placed on the generator will also determine the noise output.
10 Best Quiet Generator

Product and specifications explained

Obviously, there are some details that many buyers may not be familiar with. To make the right choice you need to know the most important ones.

Let’s start with the unit of noise level measurement- the decibel. The higher the decibel (dB) value, the louder the noise level.  The scale starts with 0 dB which indicates total silence. Basically, when the decibel level increases by 10, the sound is 10 times more intense.

Now, engine specifications are an important part of inverter generators and “OHV engine” is a term you’ll come across a lot. It stands for overhead valve engine and these valves are located at the top of the engine combustion chamber. This allows the fuel mixture to enter the chamber more smoothly and results in better combustion. Final outcome – better fuel efficiency and enhanced engine lifespan.

As I already mentioned, the noise levels will vary according to engine power output and load placed on it. In reality, most engines are specified by two power output figures – peak and continuous. The peak or surge power is the highest power a generator can deliver in short bursts. This is useful for running equipment needing high starting watts. The continuous power is the output a generator can supply for longer periods.

10 Best Quiet Generator

These are things to consider

Many first time buyers must be wondering…

What exactly are the points to consider before buying a portable inverter generator? Here, we list the most important ones.

  • Basically, inverter generators are electro-mechanical. So, to get the best performance, periodic maintenance is a must. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to keep yours in tip-top condition.
  • Make sure to use the right type of fuel. Also, check the oil levels periodically and refill as needed. Choose portable generators that come with integrated oil gauges.
  • Weight is an important consideration for portable generators. At the same time, it’s directly proportional to power output. If you want to use a generator at home as well as for camping, consider picking a product with wheels.
  • Safety is one aspect you simply can’t ignore while running generators. Even a quiet generator will need to be operated in an open environment to prevent any chance of carbon monoxide poisoning. Operating in wet environments is also a strict no-no – to prevent electrical hazards.

Jargon Buster

Honestly, jargon can make any buying process complicated. I’ve been there. So to make the process of buying a super quiet generator simple, here’s our TopNotch jargon buster for you.

Electrical overload breaker – This is a common term related to the safety of portable generators. Any electrical circuit design is based on a specific current flow. If more current flows through it, the wiring can overheat and create a safety risk. A circuit breaker is designed to trip when the current exceeds a certain level. As a result, the power supply is cut off and the circuit stays safe.

Fuel petcock – This is a fuel valve used to control the fuel flow to and from the carburetor. By regulating the valve you can prevent any fuel flow to the engine when the generator isn’t running. This’ll prevent any issues related to stale gas jamming up the carburetor.

Spark arrestor – Bear in mind that even the most fuel efficient engines release unburnt carbon particles through the exhaust. Warning: they’re a major cause of fire hazards. The spark arrestor is a small mechanical device to trap such particles before they come out of the exhaust. Even though their design may vary, the basic function of spark arrestors remains the same.

Pure sine wave output – You already know that an inverter converts DC power into AC. The AC voltage moves up and down like a standard sine wave curve moving smoothly. Due to low harmonic distortions, this output is great for sensitive electronics. But keep in mind, portable generators with a modified sine wave aren’t so good for delicate electronics.

Top Tips

Lastly, a few top tips to round off our TopNotch quiet generator buying guide.

  • Even though the concept of noise is subjective, all outdoor lovers need to bear in mind the NPS guidelines. As per this, operating a motorized generator that crosses the 60dB limit is prohibited in a National Park environment.
  • Try to choose a generator that has an acoustic enclosure. What’s that? It’s a special casing with a design that reduces the engine noise. It may be constructed of materials that reflect or absorb the noise.
  • If you find a generator with Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI), go for it. You’ll be avoiding a carburetor. They also have a smooth start even at freezing temperatures. However, it’ll cost you a few more bucks.
  • Selecting a quiet generator for camping isn’t enough. You need to make sure it follows the EPA guidelines regarding emission levels. For frequent travelers, inverter generators meeting the CARB regulations are the best choice.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q.What is the quietest generator on the market?

A: Now, there’s no one answer to that question. The fact is, the quietest generator may not meet your power needs. Ignore one over the other and you’ll be making a big mistake.

Having said that, this review is for users seeking the right balance between overall performance and noise. On top of that, we chose portable generators offering the lowest noise level. So the Honda eu3000i was our Top Pick as a super quiet device. The Yamaha EF2000iSv2, was the Best Value product in this segment.

Q.What is the quietest 3000 watt generator?

A: The advantage of a 3000 watt generator is, it has a solid peak power output to deliver high starting watts. It’s perfect for running equipment like refrigerators or chain saws. It will deliver an emergency power supply to your home. But in many cases, the large output leads to higher noise levels.

After a thorough set of tests, the Honda eu3000i is the TopNotch team’s favorite choice as the quietest generator. Finishing in the second place is the Champion 3400-Watt Dual Fuel Inverter Generator. Another superb generator that’s not only fuel efficient but super quiet too.

Q.What dB level is considered quiet?

A: As mentioned before, the decibel scale starts from 0 dB. When the noise levels are above 80dB, it’s considered damaging to hearing. The important thing is, children can be more affected by noise than adults. Noise restrictions may be in place depending on the local and environmental guidelines.
The concept of a quiet environment can vary between people. However, a quiet natural spot with no wind measures around 20dB. A whisper can be anywhere between 25dB to 30dB. The best quiet generators are designed to provide a noise level of around 50dB to 55dB at 50% load.

10 Best Quiet Generator

Round-Up

There you go…

… All the details you need for choosing a quiet generator are here at your fingertips.

My thanks go to the TopNotch office team for gathering up all the data for this in-depth review.

Whether it’s an off-grid location or a sudden outage, your comfort, and even survival can depend on the availability of power. The good news is, technology has made even the use of gas-powered generators super quiet.

So, can you really afford not to choose one?

Moreover, we’ve done all the legwork to present the top three best choices in this category to you.

Now, you really don’t want to miss this next part…

Here’s the comparative analysis of the products under all the metrics.

Our Analysis, Comparisons & Test Results

10 Best Quiet Generator

Value For Money

I’m sure you’re with me on this one…

Everyone loves a great value buy.

Then again, the concept of value is relative. For example, Honda or Yamaha generators usually come with a high price tag. But they’re designed to provide superb performance and can offer great value.

10 Best Quiet Generator

Value For Money Rating

Yamaha EF2000iSv2
9
Champion Dual Fuel Generator
9
Champion 3100 Watt Generator
8
Westinghouse Generator
8
Honda eu3000i
7
Atima Generator
7
Sportsman Generator
7
Durostar Generator
7
Predator 3500 Inverter Generator
7
Smarter Tools Generator
6

For us, the price versus performance ratio matters most. We love camping generators with great features. But overall reliability and durability are equally important.

So let’s take a look at how our competitors stand against each other.

The Yamaha EF2000iSv2 and the Champion 3400 watt generator were our chart toppers. We loved their outstanding performance and excellent features.

Undoubtedly, the Honda eu3000i is a superb choice with a low noise level. But its high price may be a turn off for a few buyers.

The Champion 3100 watt generator and the Westinghouse WH2200iXLT offered great value. The price to performance ratio was excellent for both.

If propane is your choice for fuel, the Sportsman Generator is a good choice. With a fuel efficient engine and quiet performance, the Atima generator was equally good.

The price to performance ratio of the Durostar makes it a good choice for delivering high starting watts.

Output Power

Honestly, judging generators under this metric is tricky.

Why?

Simply because power requirements aren’t the same for everyone.

However, generators with a high peak power provide the means to deliver high starting watts.

On the other hand, more power and higher engine speed can lead to more noise.

10 Best Quiet Generator

Output Power Rating

Honda eu3000i
9
Champion Dual Fuel Generator
9
Yamaha EF2000iSv2
8
Champion 3100 Watt Generator
8
Durostar Generator
8
Atima Generator
8
Predator 3500 Inverter Generator
8
Sportsman Generator
8
Westinghouse Generator
8
Smarter Tools Generator
7

So in most cases, you’ll need to run inverter generators at a lower power band to get a quiet performance.

The Honda eu3000i and the Champion Dual Fuel inverter generator stood at the top spot. Their excellent power output is matched with a fuel efficient performance.

The Yamaha EF2000iSv2 and the Champion 3100 watt generator are equal performers in the second spot. The Yamaha makes up for the slightly low power levels with its excellent handling of high load.

On the other hand, the DuroStar DS7000Q is a power-monster that can easily handle any load or any starting watts.

Lastly, we loved the power delivery and the performance of the Atima generator and the Westinghouse Generator

The Smarter Tools generator emerged with the lowest score as the performance wasn’t reliable.

Durability & Workmanship

One thing’s for sure…

Portable generators need to be durable. That allows you to use them anywhere you want.

Next, comes the portability factor. Dragging a heavy power source around your campsite isn’t fun.

Trust me, I know.

While everyone loves a fuel efficient generator, ease of use is another factor that can’t be ignored.

10 Best Quiet Generator

Durability & Workmanship Rating

Honda eu3000i
9
Yamaha EF2000iSv2
9
Champion Dual Fuel Generator
8
Predator 3500 Inverter Generator
8
Durostar Generator
8
Sportsman Generator
7
Atima Generator
7
Champion 3100 Watt Generator
7
Smarter Tools Generator
6
Westinghouse Generator
6

This is where the overall workmanship comes into play. So let’s find out how our portable generators performed in this metric.

The Honda eu3000i and the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 prove their supremacy by occupying the top spots. The excellent durability and design features make them great choices for powering small electronics.

The Champion 3400 delivered a great performance but its higher weight was a drawback.

Surprisingly, the  Predator 3500 put on a very good show with tons of practical features and great versatility.

The DuroStar DS7000Q is another well-designed generator. It has top-class safety features and great stability at higher engine speed.

I do accept it’s very heavy. But the overall power to weight ratio works in its favor.

The Champion 3000 underperformed in this segment. Quite simply, its durability wasn’t as good as its older brother.

The Smarter Tools generator and the Westinghouse generator couldn’t put a good show as durability issues arose from our user feedback.

Dependability & Reliability

Let me come straight out with it…

A quiet generator that’s not dependable isn’t worth your hard-earned money.

This might surprise you, but quite a few portable generators that come with high-end features aren’t great in the long run.

Now, this is where the top brands steal the show with their superior quality and TopNotch service.

10 Best Quiet Generator

Dependability & Reliability Rating

Honda eu3000i
9
Yamaha EF2000iSv2
9
Atima Generator
8
Champion Dual Fuel Generator
8
Champion 3100 Watt Generator
8
Predator 3500 Inverter Generator
7
Durostar Generator
7
Smarter Tools Generator
6
Westinghouse Generator
6
Sportsman Generator
5

Take a look at the table to find out how the generators measured up.

There’s no stopping the Honda eu3000i and the Yamaha EF2000iSv2. They don’t deliver the same starting watts but you can count on their performance anytime you need.

Next, the Champion brothers scored the same under this metric. Their performance was equally reliable when we put them to test.

The Atima generator has a trick up its sleeve- it uses a Yamaha engine that delivers great reliability. In addition, the user feedback worked in its favor

Now the Predator 3500 never missed a beat in our tests but the overall efficiency wasn’t the best.

What worked in favor of the Durostar Generator was the sheer volume of surge power supply to meet high starting watts. It’s dependable but exclusively for users with very high needs.

Honestly, we were disappointed with the Sportsman Generator as it doesn’t deliver a pure sine wave output. It’s not our TopNotch recommendation for sensitive electronics.

Needless to say, it ended up at the lowest spot.

Noise

Last but not least, we come to the noise factor.

When you want to use gas-powered generators in an outdoor environment, they have to be quiet.

Planning to head for a National Park? 60dB is the sound limit to keep in mind.

Manufacturers have their own ways of generator noise suppression, but…

Not all of them are equally effective.

10 Best Quiet Generator

Noise Rating

Honda eu3000i
10
Yamaha EF2000iSv2
10
Atima Generator
9
Champion 3100 Watt Generator
9
Champion Dual Fuel Generator
8
Westinghouse Generator
8
Durostar Generator
8
Predator 3500 Inverter Generator
7
Smarter Tools Generator
7
Sportsman Generator
6

Let’s see how the generators fared in terms of the noise level.

The Honda eu3000i is our best quiet generator in this category. If you’re heading for a noise-restricted zone, use it without a second thought.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 was also super quiet. But for handling more load, the eu3000i is an obvious choice.

One that surprised us was the Atima generator. The low sound level makes it a great choice for camping. The Champion 3100 watt generator did equally well.

The Champion 3400 and the Westinghouse Generator did well in terms of noise level suppression at higher engine speed.

Even with its heavy output, the Durostar generator keeps noise under control. That’s one TopNotch job by the design team.

The rest of the generators were only quiet at the lower end of the power band.

Our Final Verdict: Best Quiet Generator

Finally…

We’re almost done.

Yes, I know. It took some time to get here but it was worth it.

We have the final scores ready for you to choose a super quiet generator from our top ten.

While there were three top generators in terms of performance, it took a thorough set of tests to determine the exact rankings.

These are our results.

Ta-da….

Honda eu3000i
88%
Yamaha EF2000iSv2
90%
Champion Dual Fuel Inverter Generator
84%
Champion 3100 Watt Inverter Generator
80%
Atima Generator
78%
Durostar Generator
76%
Predator 3500 Inverter Generator
84%
Westinghouse Generator
72%
Sportsman Generator
66%
Smarter Tools Generator
64%

Conclusion: Best Quiet Generator

So here you have the complete TopNotch buying guide for the best quiet generator.

I know that’s a lot to take in, but now you should be confident to choose a quiet generator that’s right for you.

Whether you want to head outdoors or power up your home, we’ve got you covered in terms of performance, value, durability, and dependability.

In addition, we dug deep to highlight the tips and tricks of buying quiet generators.

Coming back to our results, here’s a recap.

Say hello to the Honda EU3000i, our Top Pick. It was simply unbeatable.

The Champion 3400 was the Editor’s Choice. Definitely one of the finest quiet generators out there.
Lastly, the Yamaha EF2000iSv2 stood as the Best Value product. It’s another TopNotch Yamaha generator. Need I say more?

Most importantly, we loved bringing this buying guide to you. If you enjoyed this, look out for more TopNotch reviews to choose the best kit for your next outdoor adventure.

Now it’s time for you to make your choice – which is right for you today?

topnotchoutdoor award

Champion 3400-Watt Dual Fuel Generator
topnotchoutdoor award

Yamaha EF2000iSv2
topnotchoutdoor award

Honda EU3000i