I made a resolution to simplify or reduce the number of gadgets I take on ghost hunts. This is how I decided to make a kit for my investigations.
Ghost Hunting Equipment Selection
As a solo investigator or duo, you can only bring a limited amount of equipment. So, you need to focus on what you can reasonably carry and what evidence you can capture.
There’s 3 things you can objectively capture:
- Auditory evidence
- Visual evidence
- Environmental anomalies
After a period of reflection, I realized most of the extra gear I brought didn’t help me capture more evidence. Plus, it was a pain in the ass to lug all of it around. I don’t need a van load of gear for these evidence types. It should all fit in a backpack with room to spare.
Also, just use gear you’re comfortable using. There’s no point in bringing the gadgets if you can’t move and edit files for review and distribution.
Let’s take a look at the 3 evidence types and the gear you want to bring with you.
Auditory Evidence Gadgets
I now use Zoom recorders. They’re pretty sensitive, lightweight, and have a good recording area. For the most part, I only bring a H1n Handy Recorder with me. I can keep it in my hand or place it on a table. It does a great job of picking up every little squeak, crack or sneeze down the hall that I’d need. It also records an MP3 to a SD card. You can just pop out the card and put it in your computer to grab the file.
I used to bring 3 or 4 voice recorders on an investigation. Not anymore. For one thing, it’s easy to lose them in the dark or just forget them while you pack up your other gadgets.
Visual Evidence Equipment
I went from 4 or 5 cameras to one. In retrospect, I only need one to capture the experiments I’m running. But I still need one with infrared or full-spectrum, and visible light. So I picked Sony 4K. It goes from visible light to infrared with a flip of the switch. I can also hold it in my hand.
If you use a camcorder, there’s some accessories you probably need. One’s a good external microphone. Camcorders are just okay with audio. An external mic will improve the sound quality. This is also a cheat to the audio evidence gadgets. The camcorder mic will count as a second audio recorder.
Second, I like to put it on a tripod. But you’re not as nimble. I always attach the hot mount, so I can take off the camera by pressing the release. Then I just run to the activity (well, I briskly walk to it).
I didn’t opt to use full-spectrum cameras. The one I had only recorded in full spectrum, not visible light, so it was limited to ghost hunting. Also, there’s the cost with using full-spectrum cameras: They tend to be more expensive.
Other Visual Evidence Equipment
It also helps to have a couple of other gadgets to visualize ghostly encounters. Most people think an apparition will appear or a shadow figure will walk by while you’re recording.
It doesn’t happen often. Most of the time, you won’t even notice a visual anomaly.
That’s why I try to have a laser grid around. It helps show the shimmering effect of a ghost. If you don’t have that, I go with a Boo Buddy. It glows and gives voice responses when it picks something up. REM pods are good to have around too. But my goal is to keep it to a backpack, so I use the laser grid more often than not. The Boo Buddy doesn’t fit in my backpack, so I look a little out of place with it tucked under my arm when I take the train.
One last area deals with changes in the environment. It’s not something you’ll capture on audio. Even visually it can be difficult if you don’t have the right gadget.
There’s 2 gadgets I now use, the MEL 8704R-REM-ATDD and the EDI+. They both have sound alerts and displays to show something is happening. I would lean to the EDI+ because it records the anomalies. You can check timestamps to see if the EDI+ aligns to your audio evidence and other visual evidence.
If you bring a trigger object, then place either gadget next to it. They may pick up the environmental changes during a manifestation.
And, yes, the feature image with the camera bag is my current kit. Everything easily fit in it (except for Boo). It much easier to lug around, and it all captures the most common ghostly activity.
If you have gadgets you always bring, leave a reply. We could get a lot of tips and tricks to share.