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How To Capture And Edit EVP
By Mike Sullivan
Copyright/All Rights Reserved
All of the articles referenced in this tutorial are available on the website of Paranormal Investigators Mike Sullivan & Karen Mossey: www.ectoweb.com
Getting Started - Things To Consider Before Atempting To Record
From time to time my friend and fellow researcher, Karen Mossey and I receive emails from people interested in capturing evp's (electronic voice phenomena) and asking for advice on how to get started. So for those with an interest in recording evp voices I've put together some basic information and advice on what you'll need to get started and what to expect once you're ready to record. Before I discuss the various recording equipment and computer software available for capturing and editing your recordings I want to discuss a few things that are equally important.
First, you'll need to enter into this with the right frame of mind because although recording evp is relatively harmless, you are still attempting to contact unknown entities and sometimes the responses you'll receive can be less than friendly and occasionally they can be downright nasty.
While listening to an evp on the web can be
interesting and non-threatening, capturing your first few evp's can be an
unnerving experience, especially if you are working alone. Although I was
thrilled when I recorded my first evp, I was also a bit nervous about what I was
getting myself into. This was back in 1977 and there were no web sites to
consult for more information and no one to ask questions of. All I had was the
book I was reading (Voices Of The Dead by Suzy Smith) that told me it was
possible and how to go about it. Luckily, my apprehension was soon over taken by
my curiosity and I continued on recording. Even today with so much information
available I still hear of people who are a little shaken after they begin
receiving the voices they were initially so anxious to receive. Like myself,
most of them have continued to record happily and successfully but there have
been a few who did not fare so well and had to stop recording soon after they
began. Please understand, I'm not trying to scare off anyone who might be
interested in trying to record evp but I do feel a responsibility to let people
know that, depending on their makeup and emotional state, there is the chance
that it could turn out to be a less then enjoyable experience.
Moving on, the great thing about EVP is that anyone can capture voices, anywhere, anytime and without expensive equipment. You don't need to be in a haunted location and you don't need to have highly developed psychic abilities. In fact, you really don't need to have any psychic ability at all. What you do need, especially when you're first starting out, is patience and perseverance. I've often said that I am as psychic as a stone. In fact, when we go on investigations I sense absolutely nothing. But that doesn't stop me from recording some pretty clear evp's in haunted locations, in cemeteries and while working in the room I've set up in my home to conduct evp recording sessions.
I'm sure it will be the same way for anyone who records on a regular basis because eventually you'll become noticed by the entities and they'll realize that you are not just a person turning on a recorder at a random moment but someone who is seriously attempting to make contact with them. Recording regularly, especially in the beginning, really seems to help establish that you are interested in communicating and with patience they will respond. Try to pick a time when you are relaxed and if possible try to record at the same time and place. It's also helpful to start with a greeting and to say goodbye when you finish. You may feel like you're talking to thin air but believe me you're not and eventually you will get responses. In my regular sessions, which I conduct in my home, I always open with "Hello my family and friends" and close with "Thank you, for trying to come through today along with good bye, good night etc". I didn't do this originally and I was still able to receive evp's but after I started using this greeting I found that the amount of evp increased so I recommend using a similar greeting when doing a general recording session where you are not trying to reach a particular person. Both Karen and I have also found that on some occasions the entities will refer to us by name. They will sometimes call us by our first names only or our last name only and at other times they'll say our full names.
You can hear a few of the evps we've captured that mention our names here: EVPs Mentioning Our Names
You can hear a few of the evp's we've captured of various entities saying thank you, hello goodnight etc here: EVP's From Some Very Friendly Spirits
What it really comes down to is
respect and familiarity. There are people on the other side with feelings and
personalities that are capable of communicating with us and from time to time
will do so. They'll begin to recognize you as you continue to record on a
regular basis and if you treat them with respect (even the occasional nasty
ones) you'll soon find that most of them will treat you the same whether you are
conducting a session in your own home, a cemetery or a haunted location you have
been given the opportunity to investigate.
Karen has written a really informative article
that contains some very good information about capturing evp during
investigations that you'll also find useful wherever you happen to be recording
for evp. Here is the direct link to her article:
EVP and Field
EQUIPMENT – SOFTWARE – COMPUTER CONNECTIONS
Next I'll discuss the types of recorders available for capturing evp. The good news is anything that can record audio is capable of receiving an evp. This includes old reel to reel recorders, cassette and micro-cassette recorders, digital recorders, telephones (voice mail, answering machines) and cell phone recorders. You can also record into a computer as long as you have a microphone and a software program to do the recording. In the last few years digital recorders, also known as IC recorders, have replaced the cassette recorder as the device most often used to record evp.
While answering machines, camcorders, cell phones etc are all capable of recording evp, your best bet is to purchase an inexpensive digital recorder from a local retailer or online. Paranormal voices and sounds captured on answering machines, cell phones and voice mails are rare and are initiated by the other side. In other words, in those cases the entities are trying to make contact with you where as in the case of a digital or cassette recorder the person using it to record is actively seeking to make contact with them.
Here is a link to an
article I wrote which details the pro's and cons of using cassette and digital
A Look at
Lastly, I'll discuss the various software available for editing and filtering the evp's you'll capture, because while it's great to capture an evp on your recording device, you'll quickly find that
you're going to want to transfer it to your computer for a variety of reasons, such as:
1)Editing the recording to remove the portions that don't contain the evp or anything relevant to the evp
2)Putting the evp through a filtering program to remove hiss and background noise (without removing or changing the original evp)
3)Sending it as an attachment in an email or to a web site
4)Storing it on the computer in order to free up space on a digital recorder
Most of the newer digital recorders provide a USB
link and cable for downloading your files directly to your computer. Many,
however, do not, especially the older ones, of which some are considered to be
among the best when it comes to recording evp.
For recorders without a USB link and cable, here are links to two articles I've written that will walk you through the process of connecting a recorder to a computer and setting up your computer to download your recordings:
Configuring Your Computer To Record Audio
Basic Instructions For Connecting An Audio Recorder To A Computer
When it comes to software programs one of the very best, in our opinion and many others, is Audition (formerly Cool Edit Pro). Unfortunately, Audition is very expensive. Luckily there are some pretty good alternatives available online including a very good program called Wavepad that offers a totally free version.
Here is a link to a tutorial I wrote on how to use Wavepad along with a link to download the free version of the program: WavePad Information & Tutorial
In addition here is a link to a tutorial I've
written along with a link to download an excellent program that Karen and I use to remove
excess noise from our recordings:
Clear Voice Denoiser Noise
Reduction Software Program
With patience and perseverance anyone can capture evp voices.
Good luck in your pursuit of EVP.
Copyright 2009. Karen Mossey/Mike Sullivan. All rights reserved.