EVP - Is it real or is it false?

Are you a believer in spirit voices, or do you think it is all just noise?

Date: 2nd June 2018

“So if I load up an EVP to an audio programme and filter it and enhance it, you can clearly hear what was responded to our questions on an investigation!”

"Really? Are you sure?"

What did you hear?

Reasons for this response are many in the grand scheme of things regards to any audio noises and sounds captured on a digital voice recorder.

First of all it would need identifying on what format medium are you recording at...

The two main types of format used are mp3 or WAV. Now either one is fine but before you consider using mp3 for any EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomena) recordings you must understand the quality, formatting, resolution, sampling, frequency and type of recording...

I won't go on as that is too confusing and non-relevant to what we are trying to inform you all about. I'm sure you guys and gals out there just want the bare-bones basics... so that is what I'm going to deliver for you!

Whichever format one uses, it is safe to know that all formats will use up memory on your storage devices - Higher resolutions will undoubtedly be higher quality but use more space on your devices... in other words “higher quality = less recording time”

Lower recordings will not deliver the best recordings and therefore one will experience 'audio pareidolia'


So Why not mp3?

I can only stress this time and time again that using mp3 format for your hopeful capture of EVPs will only lead to frustration and stress at over-enhancing your recordings via an audio software program like Audacity, etc.

This will eventually conclude with a lost version of what was actually recorded to the extent that almost anything left might be mislead as being an EVP capture.

Mp3 is what is generally classed as a lossy format. This means a lot of the natural raw sound is lost during the mp3 recording as the raw data is compressed to enable saving as a lower memory size.

So when you start messing around with the mp3 file you must realise that it is in some way a photocopy of an original in the first place... so in a matter of fact whatever you do will be a photocopy of a photocopy.


So why WAV?

WAV format is classed as a lossless format. This means that the whole real-time sound is captured and recorded “as is” in raw sound and so nothing is lost when recording and saving.

So this should give you an idea of why WAV on a high quality setting must be used when trying to record EVPs. That way when you open your recording into Audacity, etc. you should only need to amplify what has been recorded in order to ascertain what it is.


Classes of EVP?

Don't get me started on this one! Well we all know the 3 classes of EVP that are Class A, B or C. Now really one must remember the cast-iron rule around EVPs... If any EVP falls into anything other than Class A then it's worthless as evidence of the paranormal!

If you can not easily discern any real clear and concise full vocal tone in any supposed EVP then just get rid of it as it is not an EVP and more likely to be some other natural noise and/or sound made at the time of recording that is not of a vocal inclination - whether voluntarily or involuntarily made at the time.

It is claimed by some that what is deemed 'Class A' EVP does not require any form of amplifying from PC software... understandable as it ought to be really clear to ascertain without any enhancement.

That said, one must never ever playback an EVP on the recorder in a “live” session as the speaker output of those devices are basic to say the least and always sound tinny. I'm not saying not to playback the recording... I'm saying get a better playback device to that which you recorded it on.

Whenever Zak Bagans on Ghost Adventures undertakes a live “burst session” EVP it always sounds tinny and incredibly non-vocal noise amid the natural background sounds they obviously make during the recordings. Play it out on a superior sound system with a bit more bass it will become apparent that they made the noises themselves without even realising it!

It is becoming more and more common place that many ghost hunters are claiming they have captured EVPs when in fact it is just noise and not vocal in intent. These alleged recordings are what causes a huge stigma in the paranormal field... especially when they post them up on social media pages and the like.


Conclusion?

It is wise to remember the following points with regards to EVP:

  1. 99% of all alleged EVPs will be nothing more than noise or accidental contamination at point of capture
  2. Never playback on a live session basis as your perception will be thrown off
  3. Always record using WAV and on the highest quality setting to prevent, as far as possible, any contamination issues
  4. If you can't hear anything clearly then it's probably nothing at all
  5. It has never been proved that we can communicate with the other side so do not believe everything the believers say

Although it is not possible to prove that all EVPs are due to natural phenomena, many skeptics will always maintain that they are more likely due to things as interference from plausible sources like radio and TV transmissions, mobile phone towers, etc.

While it is a huge given that the vast amount of transmitted frequencies these days by mobile phones, AM and FM radios, TVs, baby monitors, walkie talkies, short-wave transmitters, microwaves, etc., we must realise that it isn't strange to unexpectedly hear voices on other electronic equipment like digital voice recorders.


And a last word from...

Thomas Edison was an American inventor and was classed as America's greatest of all inventors.

It was claimed that Thomas was quoted as saying:

“I do believe that if our personalities do transcend death and continue to exist in another dimension or sphere of existence, then it should be possible to construct an instrument to record the voices of these dis-incarnate people”.

Also quoted by Thomas in the October 1920 edition of Scientific American™:

"I don't claim that our personalities pass on to another existence or sphere. I don't claim anything because I don't know anything about the subject. For that matter, no human being knows. But I do claim that it is possible to construct an apparatus which will be so delicate that if there are personalities in another existence or sphere who wish to get in touch with us in this existence or sphere, the apparatus will at least give them a better opportunity to express themselves than the tilting tables and raps and Ouija boards and mediums and the other crude methods now purported to be the only means of communication."