A portable generator needs to be more than just small and lightweight.
It should also have decent output power, and should run at low volumes so that any disturbance is kept to a minimum. A quiet generator is particularly important if you will run one at home, or even on a campsite.
We’ve taken a look at some of the very best quiet portable generators that you can buy today, taking into account all of their best features, noting noise output in particular.
If you want to buy your first generator or a replacement generator and you are particularly sensitive about their noise output, then we are proud to present to you our top 10 list.
This will provide you with plenty of options across the range in both power and price.
Wen 56200i Portable Inverter Generator
The Wen is a model that we’ve reviewed in detail at Power Tools Ninja.
During our full review, we found this to be one of the more impressive quiet portable generators, even if it wasn’t the most powerful.
With 1600W running power and up to 2000W for startup and surge, this is similar in power to most other small inverter generators. It has some nice features on it, such as USB outlets, standard household outlets, and even parallel connections for chaining with other generators.
It is simple to use, easy to carry, and features an attractive design that will look great whether used at home, on a job site, or in a camping scenario.
Another important feature to note is that the Wen inverter generator is CARB comliant, so it can legally be sold throughout California. By default, CARB compliance also indicates are more environmentally friendly product.
When it comes to noise, the Wen 56200i is particularly impressive. The engine produces just 51 decibels at 25% load, which is quieter than most air conditioners.
Be sure to check out our full Wen 56200i review if you are looking for a lightweight, feature packed, and highly efficient quiet portable generator.
Interested to learn more? Go ahead and click the button below to jump straight to the product page on Amazon!
Honda EU2000i Super Quiet Portable Inverter Generator
This is a small and lightweight generator, which features the build quality and durability of some of the company’s larger models.
Although it’s not the most affordable generator on the market, and it lacks some features of other small generators, we still recommend it thanks to its good performance and quality of construction.
One of the advantages of using this model is that it is quiet, even when running near to maximum load.
It produces 2000W and can run for almost ten hours on a single gallon of gas. It can be easily carried by a single person, and it has a small footprint of 21x12x19 inches.
If you’re considering this model because you want one of the best quiet portable generators, then you will be happy to know that it produces just 60 decibels at high load, and can be as quiet as 49 decibels when under 0 – 25% load.
This model won’t impress you with fancy features or modern connectors like USB (it doesn’t have any).
Instead, it promises stable performance at low noise, and reliability that Honda is well-known for. If you don’t mind paying a premium price, you’ll get a small and portable generator that will last for decades.
Follow the link below to check the latest price and offers on Amazon.
Champion 3500 Digital Hybrid Portable Generator
Like many of the best quiet portable generators, the Champion uses a digital inverter system and a modern alternator that produces less noise than generators of the past.
Unlike some other portable generators, the Champion doesn’t use a full shroud, and instead has a partially exposed engine which is protected by a steel roll cage.
You might think that this would make the generator louder than normal, however, this is actually one of the quieter generators on the market.
It produces 3500W of continuous power, and can surge up to 4000W for starting equipment. Sound levels are rated at just 64dB, which makes it quieter than some less powerful models.
Although this model doesn’t feature any of the currently popular USB power outputs, it does have the standard connectors that you would need for home or outdoors.
There are two household style 120V outlets, as well as a 120V RV hookup. There are even parallel connectors for chaining this with other generators to provide more power.
This is a capable generator and it even comes in at a good price. Champion is also impressive in the way that they offer a three-year warranty, and they even provide lifetime technical support for owners.
Here’s the link to the product page below.
Generac 6866 iq2000 Quiet Portable Generators
Small, portable, and with an appealing high visibility design that is perfect for residential or even camping use, the Generac 6866 is a reasonably priced generator that has some great performance figures.
It outputs 1600W of continuous running power, and can surge up to 2000W for starting devices like refrigerators and freezers. The Generac is sometimes marketed as being quieter than a Honda, but this does depend on the models that you are looking at.
This model produces around 75dB of noise when standing 2 feet from the generator. This is still a comfortable amount of noise, but there are quieter Honda models available.
This is not necessarily a bad thing (the Generac is still quiet by all standards), but it is interesting that the company chose to compare themselves to Honda, particularly when some Honda models are quieter.
With strange marketing decisions aside, this is a well-made generator that has construction quality and reliability that can approach the level of Honda, Yamaha, and other high quality generators.
The power rating makes it suitable for camping power, running light power tools, or as emergency power during home outages.
Again, click the button below to go straight to the Amazon product page.
Briggs & Stratton Q6500
Need something with a bit of extra power for home backup or even for running outdoor equipment like power tools or construction lighting?
The Briggs & Stratton Q6500 is worth considering. It offers 6500W of surge power, and 5000W of continuous running power.
It can be run for up to 14 hours at 25% load, and it’s relatively lightweight at 128 lbs. This is the type of generator that you would look for if the smaller models just don’t meet your requirements, and, just because it is big on power, it doesn’t mean that you’re going to have to put up with excessive noise levels.
When running at 25% load, the generator will produce around 66dB of noise.
This is comparable to normal conversation, and is quieter than the average busy street, or even most washing machines and dishwashers.
This makes it an ideal residential generator for backup power, or it even has enough output to be used outside on a construction site.
The Briggs & Stratton is one of the best quiet portable generators not just for its power output and portability, but also because it offers a number of useful outlets, including direct USB power outlets for your electronic devices.
Here’s the link to buy below:
Honda 7000W EU7000is
Some of the most powerful generators are also the quietest, as can be seen with the Honda EU7000is 7000W model.
7000W is plenty for any household, and is even suitable for outdoor concerts and other events. Although this is a large generator and would easily take two people to lift, it is actually relatively portable, thanks to heavy duty wheels and a folding handle system.
Moving this around on the ground will only require around 30 lbs. of lift weight, so it’s great for pushing around your home property.
Electric power tools, water pumps, and even air conditioners can be run from this unit.
Many owners have been pleasantly surprised by the quiet operation, which is made possible thanks to Honda’s advanced engine technology.
This is one of the quiet portable generators that uses EFI (electronic fuel injection), this makes it highly efficient and much better than carburetor models. This model can also run for up to 18 hours continuously when under 25% load.
Wondering just how quiet this model is? It runs at just 60dB at full output, and just 52dB at 25% load.
This makes it comparable to generators that have less than a third of the power. This is definitely a compelling option if you are looking for a quiet yet powerful inverter generator.
Another model that we have reviewed in detail, the Yamaha EF2000iSV2 is one of the most interesting designs that we’ve seen.
Before we talk about performance, it’s necessary that we talk about how this device looks.
It is compact, has an ultra-modern aesthetic, and looks more like a portable battery than it does an actual generator. To say that this is a good looking device would be an understatement.
If you are looking for a generator that would look great when used for small outdoor concerts, or for use as a backup generator at your architecturally designed home, then the Yamaha would be compelling based on its looks alone.
Of course, looks aren’t all that matter when it comes to quiet portable generators, and we’re happy to say that the Yamaha can deliver excellent performance when it comes to power and features.
Like a number of the other quiet generators we’ve looked at, it runs 1600W continuous and can do up to 2000W for surge/starting power.
Noise is comparable with some of the quietest generators we’ve seen, and it produces under 52dB at 25% load. It’s a CARB compliant model, and it features two household outlets, parallel connectors, and a battery charging connector.
Although it lacks the USB connectivity of some other smaller models, the performance and solid construction help to offset any disappointment you might feel.
Like Honda generators, Yamaha models are priced at a premium, which is reflective of the excellent build quality and long lasting durability.
Click the link below to learn more about features and the latest price on Amazon.
The Atima AY2000i is another model that looks great and features a modern design.
Encased all in white with black accents, this generator is definitely unique! On the inside, there are a number of similarities to the Yamaha EF2000iSV2, and the Atima even uses a Yamaha engine to produce power.
It features standard household outlet ports and parallel connections, and even has some handy display LEDs so you can check that everything is running smoothly.
Being powered by Yamaha means that this generator should last for many years, and the 1600W continuous and 2000W surge will make it ideal for lightweight tasks.
When running, noise is rated at 52dB at 25% load, which is almost exactly the same as the Yamaha model. This model is also CARB compliant.
Slightly cheaper than the equivalent Yamaha model, the Atima AY2000i is a slightly more affordable alternative, with much of the same technology that goes into the highly revered Yamaha units.
MTN Gearsmith 2000W
Does shopping with a smaller budget mean that you’ll miss out on finding one of the best quiet portable generators?
Not necessarily, and the MTN Gearsmith is a good example of an affordable generator that has features similar to the top brands.
Although it is half the price of some of its competitors, the Gearsmith outputs 1650W of continuous power, and 2000W of peak power.
Although the aesthetic is utilitarian and the features are sparse, it still includes the essentials of two standard household style outlets, and a single battery charger. There are no hi tech display readouts, and no parallel connectors or USB connectors.
If you want something that costs less but that still gets the job done, then this model should be on your shortlist. With a 68 decibel rating, it is suitable for campgrounds and is still within comfortable noise range for use in any scenario.
The Firman WO3083 is the final model in this overview of the best quiet portable generators.
It is slightly more powerful than the majority of the generators we’ve looked at, and it outputs 3000W continuous, or up to 3300W surge power.
This makes it better for running more equipment, and it could be considered a true home backup generator if you don’t require electric cooking or major air conditioning/heating systems to be run.
This model features 120V household outlets, a 120V RV hookup, and even has a USB connector for direct charging cell phones and other devices.
It will run for up to 14 hours at 50% load, and outputs just 58 decibels of noise.
While not the most popular brand or model, the Firman WO3083 does have some interesting features (including an electric and remote start system), and is made from high quality materials that should make it a suitable long term investment.