Characteristics of EVP
The following list of characteristics will provide a sense of how EVP sounds and the nature of the phenomenal voices.
The first group of characteristics are specifically for transform EVP, which are thought to be formed by the transformation of audio frequency energy into a simulated voice.
EVP are Distinctive:
EVP have a distinctive character of cadence, pitch, frequency, volume and use of background sound. The voices have a distinctive sound to them that is difficult to describe. For instance, EVP messages often have an unusual speed of enunciation; the words seem to be spoken more quickly than normal human speech. Regarding this peculiarity, Konstantinos2 wrote, “The best way I can describe it is that it’s almost as if each word is spoken quickly, yet the pauses between the words are of a natural length. The combination of these two speed factors makes for the peculiar rhythm and perceived speed.” You may also notice that the paranormal voices often have a hollow and/or monotone quality.
EVP are sometimes received at higher or lower time base than normal speech. The enunciation of words is not just faster, but the frequency range of the phrases is sometimes higher than normal human speech.
Italian researcher, Paolo Presi,4 has reported that spectral analysis of EVP samples has shown that the fundamental frequencies of voice associated with the human voice box are sometimes missing in EVP. He describes the typical EVP as a “thickening” of the background noise to form the voice.
Sounds are often heard prior to an occurrence of EVP. Although these vary in nature, they tend to be within tenths of a second of a phrase and are a “popping” or “clicking” noise reminiscent of the “squelch” sound caused when the automatic gain control engages as the “push to talk” button is depressed on a Citizens Band radio.
EVP Show Evidence of Being Limited by Available Energy:
Alexander MacRae5 has noted that the utterances tend to have about the same amount of audio power in their associated sound wave from one EVP sample to another. That is, a short EVP will tend to be louder than a long EVP. A very long phrase might be composed of two or more average-length phrases separated by minor pauses. Also, an utterance may trail off at the end, as if the energy is being depleted before the message is delivered. Again, this is as if the communicator is attempting to manage available power as “packets” of energy. The evidence is very strong that EVP are energy-limited phenomena.
EVP are Complete Words or Phrases:
Researcher Alexander MacRae has also conducted considerable analysis of EVP messages, determining that a message is typically one to two seconds in duration and is not truncated at the beginning or end. If EVP were crosstalk, they would often begin in the middle of a word. EVP messages are usually complete thoughts, as well.
EVP are Found by Playing the Soundtrack Backwards:
One of the more bizarre characteristics of EVP is that CPS does not recognize is an EVP that seems to be garbled, but that makes perfect sense when the soundtrack is played in reverse. By this, we mean to say that the sound track is played so that the voice of the experimenter can be heard speaking backwards, but the EVP can be heard speaking forwards. As with the ability of communicating entities to anticipate questions by placing answers into recording media before the question is asked, the phenomenon of reverse track EVP provides important hints as to the nature of time.
The Voices in EVP are often Recognizable:
It is common for an EVP to contain the recognizable voice of the discarnate person thought to be speaking. It is also common for that entity to say something that was typical of what he or she would have said while in the physical. Their personality clearly remains intact even though the person no longer has a physical body.
Mundane Voices are Sometimes Transfigured:
A communicating entity will sometimes remodulate or transfigure the experimenter’s words into EVP. In one striking example, the words of a French-speaking radio announcer were changed, mid sentence, into an English spoken EVP. The EVP was clearly inappropriate for what the announcer had been saying.
Some EVP sound as if they are comments intended for someone other than the experimenter. This is much like momentarily listening in on a party line telephone call. It is not uncommon in both field and controlled recording situations to record comments that seem as if unseen people are discussing the experimenter’s actions in much the same way that you might discuss the activity of someone that you were watching.
A Need for Background Sound Sources:
Research has shown that the voice in EVP is formed as “a thickening” of ambient sound energy. This is an opportunistic use of sound energy that often results in no or largely missing voice box frequencies and an unnatural arrangement of other frequencies usually formed by the passage of the fundamental frequencies through the mouth.13 Also, EVP has been recorded by audio-recording devices or processes which have been isolated from ambient sound by such techniques as removing the microphone, and in some instances, acoustically isolating the recording device.” Because of these characteristics, it is standard practice to assure in some way the availability of ambient sound for voice formation, even while isolating the recording device or process from uncontrolled ambient sounds, such as crowd noise.
Experimenters often complain about having several layers of EVP in the same location of the recording media. This is especially common when more than one background sound source is used during the experiment. For instance, if a fan and radio static is used for background sound, a message might be found in the fan noise and a second message might be found in the radio static—both in the same segment of sound track.
EVP is Found Wherever the Experimenter Listens:
This suggests that the source of audio noise is not a factor for EVP, so long as the audio energy is suitable for voice formation. In practice, the majority of techniques for recording EVP involve sound conditioning, rather than unique forms of psi detection. For instance, upscaling infrasound so that it can be heard by human ears or downscaling ultrasound, really constitute techniques of sound conditioning, and the resulting EVP is not evidence that the utterance was formed beyond human hearing, but that it was formed when the audio energy was made available to the recording process.