Updated: Mar 25, 2022
I have often mused upon the mysteries of how some days recording will yield far more than others. Generally I keep to the same amount of time on site, unless it's for a sleepover sort of event. So I have begun to lay out my information for each visit: Date, how long I recorded for, number of captures, and the average per visit (100/time x captures) and I began to notice something. If I recorded for an hour, I would/will get (on average) 35 captures. If I record for two hours, it's as expected, usually around 70 captures. Yet anything over two hours, two and a half say, the average drops rapidly or at least doesn't increase at the same rate as you'd expect.
In the early days of all-nighters and sleepover events at the prison, I'd go giddily into the shadows with my recorder primed and ready to rock and roll. Twelve hours of recording! Well...I could expect around 420 captures surely?! Okay, so omit a few minutes here and there for toileting, coming across noisy guests, stuffing one's face etc, so let's realistically bring it down to eleven hours of recording time. That would still be a whopping 350 captures!
In actuality though, the most I've garnered on a long-haul investigation is 190, and that was for Night Behind Bars on May 12th 2018. Other sleepover events have given me treasurable counts, such as 109, 135, and 105 to name just a few, but it does make me ask the question - WHY does the average drop off? Here are the sleepover averages:
OCTOBER 27th 2017 = 39ph
MAY 12th 2018 = 64ph
SEPTEMBER 18th 2020 = 29
JULY 2nd 2021 = 28
These are considerably less than the average captures per daytime visits. Why?
What factors could well affect activity or at least the capturing of my own brand of evidence?
Sorry if this is my most deadly dull blog to date, but there's all sorts mulling in my mostly latent brain right now, and these things must be addressed if I am to progress within this field, which I fully intend to do!
Here are some of the possible factors that I feel could well affect evidence gatheration.....
* Location - what sort of place is it, is it modern, historic, what sort of activity is it known for?
* Energy drains - manmade (electrics etc) - electrics are known to produce considerable electromagnetism, something that often accompanies manifestation of phenomena. But what if it actually saps energy too?
* Energy drains - natural. Is it possible that the very high number of sleepover guests on a night event say, literally sap the activity levels? On the flip side what about natural energy providers? Running water etc? These (esp' running natural water sources) are often present during high-level haunt cases.
* Bioenergetics of investigator - am I tired? Am I moody? Am I ill? Mental attitude I feel plays a massive part in successful sessions. Literally giving off bad vibes!
* Sensitivity of recorder. I get told off by sound pro's who think that my recorder is too basic as it 'lets in too much noise'. You know what? I'd rather record EVERYTHING in the wing and not just what's in front of my nose. I don't want to filter out noise because in some cases (many) EVPs are distant, not always up close and personal. However some recorders will have different settings, meeting mode, outdoors, you know? Always make sure of your settings before heading out on location. I recently purchased as 2nd hand recorder from a student on EBay, and he'd set it to dictation mode. What I got post-investigation on plugging into Audacity was a wave form so miniscule it was virtually pointless to analyse at all.
I want the white noise, the hiss, I don't want to trim the audio fat. I want it full fat or nothing! Warts an 'all please. And don't use an external microphone unless you have played with it first. I did on site for 6 hours and was SO excited for what I might find. Turned out that it blocked everything and I had 6 hours of silence, which was gutting to say the least...
* Who I'm with - if working with anyone (rare but not unknown) are they affecting the investigation in some way? Being with a sceptic, being with an all too eager-to-believe, how could this change things?
* Other equipment - I've often found that if I'm half focused on my phone for example, if I'm receiving texts or intent on taking photos as I'm recording, captures are rare and of poor quality. If I've got other items of my kit out working, a K2 for example very rarely do I manage to record anything. There are only two times that the K2 and recorder have produced the goods and that's during poltergeist activity at home when the K2 stayed on red for well over an hour, during which time I captured a clear man's voice, and again at home after returning from a job interview at a funeral home. I felt weird, recorded and got the K2 out and it flickered orange to red briefly whilst EVPs were successfully nabbed.
If I'm with my ghosting buddy Chris, he's generally using cat balls or the Boo Bear. On these occasions I may be recording constantly but I'll get naff all. When Chris and I are 'on fire' we get amazing captures, but this is when he's not using the bear or cat balls and when I'm not recording. Perhaps energies don't like being divided...
* The weather - Temperature, humidity, natural fluctuations in electromagnetism, all plays a part. I've found that the icier it is the more EVPs I usually capture, and they're often although not always, of better quality than those recorded on a sultry summer's day. That said I've had some absolute crackers in summer too, so who knows. All I do know is that two of the three times I've recorded in Greece up in the 30s I've got nothing. The one time I was successful was down a damp dark tunnel shielded from the sun, not out in the hot dust of a leper island (or illegally mooching around inside the now boarded-up hospital on said island) or on the site of a mass murder.
* Time of day - I'd say that my best captures are evenly spread, day and night. The child's heart-rending scream in B Wing was captured at 10:10am, and my 'knock knock, comin' through' little boy was at 11pm. Is it a case of how long is a piece of string?!
* Footfall - I find that the more people on site or visiting throughout the day, has the ability to drain evidential activity. Certainly this is true of the old gate lodge at the prison where I would without fail, capture clear loud and personal EVPs. As such, the commercial ghost tours now talk about my Mr Grumpy (they've nicknamed him Bob) and consequently many visitors flock upstairs to the little rooms where I've had so many experiences. These days I'd be lucky to get a clear capture up there, which is sad. But hey... maybe I've just used up my gate lodge juices?! Maybe like heartbeats, EVPs are finite.
* Regularity of investigating - is it possible to get Burn Out?! Initially my visits were once or twice per month. Gradually I increased my sessions, and now that I'm working one night a week at the prison, captures seem to be getting less and less, and certainly of a lesser quality. I may be getting them - but there's fewer Oh WOW! moments coming through my headphones! Let's hope that this changes..
Does energy, either the investigator's or that of the entities, dwindle after a time? I think that this is a distinct possibility! Time between sessions must be allowed to rejuvinate energies, otherwise I think personal input will just diminish anything coming through, ultimately blocking communications mentally or phyiscally. They may be talking, but I'm not hearing!
I'm looking at various graphs that I've put together about my EVPs over the years, looking at the Why factors and trying to see patterns. It's all I've been doing today actually, hence why I'm totally at odds to write anything vaguely witty or funny. My brain is fried!
It's all worth a ponder though isnt' it?
So for now, I'm still musing.... but I have to sign off or I'll bore you to tears.