Tech Time with Brock and Doc: Paranormal Starter Kit

Tech Time with Brock and Doc: Paranormal Starter Kit

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There is a plethora of equipment to choose from but what does someone who is new to paranormal investigating actually need?  Before you go crazy and spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on your new hobby, there is one thing you need to know.   Probably 99% of most paranormal “evidence” comes in the form of audio.  That said that is where we should put most of our investment.  Beyond that you may want to purchase a low cost point and shoot camera to document the location, and a low-cost EMF meter to look for Electro-Magnetic Fields.

Zoom H2n

Zoom H2n

This is the new Zoom H2n.  It is a Digital Voice Recorder and also be used as a USB Microphone with most computers.  As a digital voice recorder it has awesome capabilities, quality sound and amazing pickup capability.  The recorder stores on SDHC cards and can handle up to a 32GB card of storage.  This will enable you to make high quality recordings for many days on end if needed.  It records ­up to 48khz (48,000 samples a second) in WAV format or up to 192kbps as an MP3.   It comes with several accessories, the most important of which is a foam windscreen.  It has three amplification settings Low, Medium and High.  When set on high it can detect the slightest whispering even at 40-60 feet away from the microphone.  Originally designed to do live performance recordings, it has 4 electret condenser microphones.   The two microphones located on front are phased in 90 degrees and the two on the back are phased in 120 degrees.  This is useful depending on the distance from and size of the performance you are attempting to record.  The microphones are selectable as front pair, back pair, combined stereo and 4-track recording (WAV format only).  The 4 track recording is useful to identify the direction from which a sound originated.  So if you are looking for a high quality microphone to use with your computer and to use on investigations the Zoom H2n is for you.  This little jewel of a recorder can be obtained for the low price of $160.

Sony ICD-PX333 4 GB Voice recorder

Sony ICD-PX333 4 GB Voice recorder

Perhaps that’s a little too high for your budget.  Then maybe something like a Sony ICD-PX333 4 GB Voice recorder is more for you.  Priced at only $49, this recorder offers excellent storage and audio quality.  Although this recorder only records monaural audio, it has excellent audio quality when recording in its SHQ and HQ modes.   It stores recordings in MP3 formats and has 4 recording modes: SHQ (44.1kHz, 192kbps): Super High- Quality monaural mode HQ (44.1kHz, 128kbps): High-Quality monaural mode SP (44.1kHz, 48kbps (Mono)): Standard Play monaural mode LP (11.025kHz, 8kbps (Mono)): Long Play monaural mode.  The recorder also has two levels of microphone sensitivity, Low and High.  The low setting is excellent for taking verbal notes while the high setting enables you to amplify sounds and hopefully EVP’s.  This recorder has 4GB of internal memory and Mini USB connector that allows you to connect it to your computer to download the files easily.

Digital Camera

Digital Camera

Next you may want to invest a few dollars in a low-cost point and shoot camera.  While the more you can afford to invest when purchasing a camera the better, a low-cost point and shoot digital camera can still provide a lot of value on an investigation and not for the reasons you may think.  If you are investigating in a residential home, it is important to document everything before and after the investigation.  This can help protect you and your team from accusations of stealing or breaking their belongings.  Plus, if you get lucky you may catch some visual anomaly in a photo that could be paranormal.  Most cameras use Flash memory like SD (Secure Digital) cards or Sony Memory stick to store images.  Most of these cameras can also be connected via USB cable to your computer to download your images.  You will want to ensure you get a camera that has at least 8MP (Mega-Pixels) or higher.  You can find these cameras online pricing anywhere from $30 – $100.

EMF Meter

EMF Meter

You may want to include a small EMF Meter.  An EMF Meter detects Electro-Magnetic Fields.  These fields can be given off by electrical wiring, appliances and basically anything that runs on electricity.  It is believed by many the spirits can manifest EMF fields that can be detected.  Most teams use them prior to beginning the investigation, to determine the base levels of electromagnetic fields in a home or location.   Then during the investigation they use them to locate instances of EMF that were not present previously and try to trace it’s source to identify whether it is coming from something physical or perhaps something spiritual.  The detector depicted here is an EMF-822a and is available online for about $60.

First Aid Kit

First Aid Kit

Another thing to consider having handy is a First Aid Kit.  Safety first always! Although investing in the dark is certainly not a requirement as you can experience plenty of paranormal activity with the lights on as well, most people like to do it in the dark.  You never know if you are going to bump into something, trip and fall and get some scrapes and bumps.  It’s always best to be prepared for all occurrences, so at least someone on your team should have a first aid kid handy.

Aluminum Carrying Case

Aluminum Carrying Case

And lastly, you will want a nice equipment case to safely store your equipment in and protect it from damage during transport.  For only $29.99 you can get this nice aluminum hard case that has pluck foam inside.  The pluck foam allows you to remove only the sections creating cubby holes to store each piece of equipment snug and secure.  They are available at Habor Freight stores near you (in the US) or online!

If you would like to know more about any of the equipment discussed here, please check out the Tech Time with Brock and Doc podcasts available at http://techtime.paramaniaradio.com/.

To read the Paranormal Galaxy Magazine version of this article, click on the title Tech Time with Brock and Doc: Paranormal Starter Kit

 

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