Who sells the best high tech equipment?

“Where do I find the best high tech equipment for ghost hunting?”

If you’re asking this question, I hope you’ve been involved in ghost hunting for many months.

Until you’re sure ghost hunting is for you, don’t invest in specialized equipment.

This is important: Don’t try to impress others with fancy equipment. Instead, learn to use basic tools well. That impresses fellow researchers.

Sometimes it’s the equipment. Sometimes, it’s the investigator.

shack hack
A “hacked” Radio Shack radio, used for ghost hunting.

I used to raise an eyebrow at “Shack Hacks,” until I saw John Zaffis talk to one. Suddenly, it talked back, clearly and in context.

It wasn’t his Shack Hack, and it was at least a dozen feet away from him. It just responded to him, as if it recognized him.

(Since then — around 2009, long before he became a TV star — I’ve never seen anyone achieve the same results with a Shack Hack. Maybe I just haven’t seen others as skilled as him. I don’t know.)

Where to shop – online and off.

Where you find ghost hunting equipment will depend on how specialized the devices are.

For example, cameras and voice recorders can be purchased at any electronics store or online. Amazon and Overstock offer low prices for basic and backup-level equipment. Other retailers do, too.

Ovilus or real-time EVP devices require an equally specialized shop or online retailer.

It’s important to feel confident about your purchase. You may need to discuss your options with a store clerk or seller who’s familiar with ghost research.

It’s equally important to check reviews by professionals who’ve tried that equipment. It helps if they’re also experienced paranormal investigators.

Some electronics wizards specialize in dedicated equipment for paranormal researchers. Digital Dowsing — the website featuring Bill Chappell’s custom-designed equipment — is one of the best-known.

Others keep a lower profile. You’ll see their equipment at ghost-related events, but not in stores and rarely online.

To find them, go to events, especially off-the-beaten-path events where high-profile investigators get together. That’s where you’ll find the most experimental tools… devices you may see on TV shows, several months later.

Spend with caution.

Investing in experimental devices can be risky. Generally, they have a 50/50 chance of working as well as hoped. Some will work great for a short time, and then break. (Most designers/manufacturers will replace the item.)

Never spend money you can’t afford to lose if the seller turns out to be completely clueless about this field. (However, I rarely run into that.)

In many cases, the best, specialized equipment is made in small batches, as few as two or three at a time. Expect to sign up for a waiting list. It may take months to receive the high-tech tools you want.

Like the “high rollers” tables in Vegas, this is a risky area for beginners.

How do video cameras show ghosts?

Videos can show the same kinds of anomalies we see in ghost photos.

The difference is, those anomalies move in most ghost videos.

The most popular — and reliable — anomalous images in ghost videos are orbs and shadow people.

Apparitions are highly suspect in ghost photos or videos. They’re so rare, you’re more likely to win the lottery than capture one in a picture.

Apparitions

Apparitions are ghosts that look like people. They might seem solid or translucent.

In photos, most “apparitions” are people who stepped into the frame when no one noticed. Enlarging the frame usually helps the team identify who it was.

If possible, one team member should take a photo of everyone at every investigation. That includes staff members, visitors, and so on. Each should be a full-length photo. That way, you have a reference if someone’s arm, leg, or foot shows up in the frame.

Orbs

“Floating orbs” are among the most common and controversial images.

To rule out normal dust, experiment with your video camera in dusty attics and basements. Also film outdoors in fields and dirt roads.

orb at Gilson Road Cemetery, Nashua, NHDust, dirt, insects, and pollen may be easy to detect. Gravity causes them to sink slowly towards the floor or ground. The exception is when a fan or ventilation duct creates an updraft. That keeps the dust (etc.) to continue bobbing along in mid-air.

Sometimes, orbs float in a steady line, or even seem to climb or bob up and down. If the activity can’t be explained, those videos are some of the most interesting evidence we have.

Shadow People

Shadow people are unexplained, shadowy figures. Usually, we see them moving. Sometimes, they show up in our photos and videos.

If you want to study those unexplained shadows, video footage is much better than still photos.

When we see an unexplained shadow in a regular (still) ghost photo, we must return to the site. We have to see what might have cast that shadow.

When a video camera captures a moving, shadowy figure, it’s far more compelling evidence of paranormal activity.

Other Anomalies

Learn what’s normal (but sometimes weird-looking) for your video camera.  Just like regular cameras, it’s important to experiment with video cameras, too.

Test them with dust, pollen, dirt, and in locations with lots of insects.

bug in ghost photo
Two photos taken seconds apart. The lower one shows an insect, not a ghost orb.

Moths and mosquitoes are the leading culprits when you see an orb in your photos or video recordings.

They’re also the easiest to identify, once you know what to look for.

After dark, take lots of photos and video footage of different insects.

Learn the irregularities that separate highlighted bugs from anomalous orbs.

Usually, I try to take two photos in a row. I don’t move between photos. I try not to breathe. My goal is to capture two nearly identical photos.

Comparing the two photos, I can usually see if an orb was a flying insect.

Tip: If you’re not sure if the site has a lot of bugs, wait until dusk or slightly after it. Then, look up at nearby streetlights. Usually, if insects are nearby, you’ll see them highlighted by the streetlight.

If you think you’ve filmed a ghostly anomaly, run tests. Try to recreate the effect.

If there’s no normal explanation for what you photographed, then — by definition — it’s paranormal.