Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP) is the appearance of intelligible voices on recording medium that has no known physical explanation. Many of the voices are thought to originate from deceased people. This is the primary reason that people first began experimenting with EVP.
Others study EVP to better understand how and why it works, and to improve EVP experimental techniques.
The recording equipment need not be expensive or elaborate to work with EVP. As in any field of interest, some people are better at recording EVP than others. With patience, perseverance and good listening techniques, you should be able to record and hear EVP messages.
Characteristics of the Voices:
The recorded voices may be very quiet and are often difficult to hear and understand at first. Most EVP experimenters say that they have developed an “ear” for the sounds, after learning to distinguish them from background noise. The voices can often be recognized as male or female, young or old. Messages usually last two seconds or less and are most often two to four words. The words may be spoken very quickly, and there is often a distinctive cadence to EVP voices.
Basic Equipment Needed:
Audio Recorder - EVP has been recorded on all types of equipment. The built-in microphone on a portable tape recorder tends to pick up motor noise. Therefore, it is best to use an external microphone. It is also best to use a cassette tape deck with mechanical controls that allow easy, repeated review of the voices. Be sure the recorder has a counter. People report recording EVP on telephone answer machines and many other devices that do not have external microphones. Digital Voice Recorders (also known as an IC recorder or digital note recorder) are fast becoming the recorder of choice, but they are best used with a computer to analyze and store the recordings.
Microphone - A microphone will help you make a record of your comments during the recording session, and introduce external sound sources. EVP messages will have more meaning if you have a record of the questions asked and the recording circumstances.
Headphones - Since the EVP voices frequently are not loud, many voices will be missed unless headphones are used. The earmuff type, which completely covers the ear, is usually used.
Tape - A new and any low noise, high sensitivity tape may be used. 60-minute tape (30 minutes each side) is recommended.
Speaker - A separate speaker is not necessary but is good to have. With the speaker, everyone in the room can hear.
Recording Procedure - General but sometimes best performed in the background
Always tape when your energy level is highest!
Scheduling - Entities will speak on tape at any time of day or night. In the beginning, however, it is advisable to record at a regular time and place. By doing this, the entities learn when you will be recording. After making a connection with the entities, you will be able to collect EVP at any time and in any location. Try to find a place that will be quiet and free of interruptions. Background sounds are okay, but it is important that you are aware of these so that you will recognize what sounds are natural and what sounds are EVP. Keep your recordings short. You will want to listen to each part of the recording very carefully and this can take time
Background Sound Source - It seems that the entities use sounds in the environment to help form EVP messages. Most recording situations have some background sounds, but you may wish to add sound to your recording environment. A fan, a radio tuned off-station or running water will work. Some people use foreign language radio or audio tapes. The entity will sometimes remodulate your voice or other sounds in the environment. The lower quality IC recorders have a relatively noisy sound circuit and do not generally require added noise. As a rule, the higher the quality recorder, the more added sound is needed.
Recording - Vocalize your comments during an EVP session. Many experimenters begin with a short prayer and an invitation to friends on the other side to participate in the experiment. It can be helpful to begin an experiment by speaking your name and the date. We have found that the entities will often come through as soon as the recorder is turned on. These beginning messages are often the loudest, so it is a good idea to turn on the recorder and wait a few seconds before announcing yourself and then ask questions. Your questions should be recorded, and you should leave a period of time between each comment for the entities to respond.
Some experimenters make an “appointment” with the intended entity the day before during prayer or meditation. Some also provide feedback before the session so that the entities will know how the last experiment went. It is not necessary to record in the dark. You will find that experimenters try all sorts of devices and energy sources to help the entities communicate. You may also want to put written questions in the EVP experiment area the day before. Quite possibly the entities can read these and may respond accordingly.
Playback - The paranormal voice is usually not heard until playback of the tape. Experimenters report that the voices tend to become stronger and clearer as the entities gain in experience, but at first the voices may speak in whispers. Voices may not be recorded in every session and it may take several sessions for you to discover the first voice. Hearing the voices is a learned ability. The entities seem to learn through practice how to come through more frequently and more loudly.
Keeping a Log - Maintaining a record of recording results is very helpful. Include the date, time, place on the counter where the message is received, the message itself, and the question asked. Be sure to label the tapes. Experimenters report that they feel weather may affect results. TOPSl site has geomagnetic and solar reports. There is also a link for moon phase information.
Classes of Voices -
Class A voice can be heard and understood over a speaker by most people.
Class B voice can be heard over a speaker, but not everyone will agree as to what is said.
Class C voice can only be heard with headphones and is difficult to understand. Class B or C voices may have one or two clearly understood words. Loud does not equal Class A.
You can substitute a computer for the tape recorder if you wish. Your computer should have an audio input jack, speakers, headphone jack and sound player application of some form. Windows comes with a Sound Recorder application that will work. A sound editor like Audition or Audacity is most popular because these applications allow for easy amplification, filtering and reversing of the sound files.
You can either make the recording on a tape recorder and then play the tape into the computer for review, editing and storage, or attach a microphone directly to the computer and use the sound editor as a tape recorder.
When transferring into a computer, make sure the computer is set for “Line In” recording in “Sound and Multimedia” in the “Control Panel” of your Personal Computer. If you must take sound from the “Earphone” jack of your recorder, consider purchasing an “attenuating cord” to match the difference in resistance between the two jacks. Radio Shack can help.
A Note About Digital Voice Recorders:
If you are using a digital voice recorder, we recommend that you listen to the playback in a quality tape recorder or in your computer. You will be surprised at the quality of the sound track when it is not listened to with the little built-in speaker. You need not use an external microphone, as the devices do not make internal noise.
Should you decide to purchase a digital voice recorder for EVP, keep in mind that cheap is good. The less expensive recorders usually use a lower sample rate, which produces more noise and it is that noise we believe the entities use to form the voices. There is one model of the Panasonic line that is now being sold on eBay for far more than it originally cost and very much more than it is worth. The recorder was well liked by EVP experimenters because it was one of the first; however, other models and other brands have since been made available and they work just as well.