Spirit Box

Is a Spirit Box Real?

Can spirits make contact through radio frequencies?

The Spirit Box has become a must-have piece of equipment in the kit bag of all paranormal investigators. Since its launch on Ghost Adventures, the world famous P-SB7 T Spirit Box, has been used regularly used by Zak Bagans and his team. But what is a spirit box and can it really communicate with the dead?

What is a Spirit Box?

A spirit box is a device that is used by paranormal investigators to communicate with the spirit world. There are a number of different models available on the market but essentially, a spirit box scans through radio frequencies and static in the hope of the investigator receiving a message from the spirit world.

A spirit box is often used in combination with other ghost hunting equipment in an attempt to communicate with spirits and provide evidence of paranormal activity in a haunted location.

What is the History of Spirit Boxes?

People have been trying to contact spirits for many hundreds of years and the use of spirit boxes dates back to the 19th century. Spiritualists would use a type of device known as a spirit trumpet, which would amplify sound and produce a low, eerie hum in an attempt to communicate with the dead!

The modern spirit box craze began when a paranormal researcher Frank Sumption first attempted to contact spirits using an AM radio receiver, hence why you may have heard this kind of device referred to as a “Franks Box”

The Spirit Box has since become one of the most popular pieces of paranormal investigation equipment and the world famous P-SB7 device, which was designed by Gary Galka, has often provided fascinating evidence on Ghost Hunting television shows such as Ghost Adventures.

Do Spirit Boxes Really Work?

Some paranormal investigators believe that spirit boxes are a legitimate tool for communicating with the spirit world, while others are still incredibly sceptical of the devices.

There is no scientific evidence to support the idea that spirit boxes actually work, however it is undeniable that paranormal researchers have heard words or phrases through the Spirit Box in response to very direct questions and the evidence can be incredibly compelling.

Scepticism and Pareidolia

Whilst many paranormal investigators swear by the spirit box, they are also met with a lot of scepticism, There is a belief that voices that come through a spirit box, or those recorded during EVP sessions, can simply be explained as Pareidolia.

Pareidolia is the psychological phenomenon where humans, by nature, try to make sense of the abstract. In the same way you may see the shape of a dog in the clouds or Yvette Fielding’s face in a slice of toast, it is argued that the brain convinces us we have heard certain words in the static.

This is especially prevalent on group vigils, where one person in the group can easily convince the rest they have heard a specific word in the white noise! One way around this is by conducting an experiment using the Estes method, which we are about to explain!

Yorkshire Ghost Guy, a paranormal investigator, who specialises in EVP recordings told Ghost Mag: “I’ve only recently started using the spirit box and to be honest I’m not 100% convinced by it.

“I think a lot of investigators use them because the answers are instant however I still favour natural or pure EVPs, which are not through a device of any kind, because they are more compelling and there is less chance of contamination.”

How to use a Spirit Box

We find that the best way to use a Spirit Box is always in conjunction with a digital voice recorder. Some spirit boxes will have the capability to record the full session, but if this is not the case we recommend recording the vigil by placing a voice recorder as close as possible to the spirit box.

Whilst recording is important as it allows you to review your responses after the investigation, you may also manage to capture further evidence in the way of Electronic Voice Phenomena. At the incredibly haunted Drakelow Tunnels, whilst the radio waves were quiet, we captured an EVP response that did not originate from the spirit box during the vigil.

As with an EVP session, it is always best to ask spirits questions and then allow a short pause to give any ghosts present time to answer.

If there are no voices coming through the white noise, be sure to check your digital recorder to see whether you may have caught an EVP. Things really start to become compelling if you are receiving similar answers on both devices…

Using the Estes Method

One way to use a Spirit Box that has produced interesting results is a variation of the Estes method. You may have seen this on television shows such as Portals to Hell, where one brave participant is sat alone from the rest of the group and begins to start receiving messages from the spirits!

For this to work, you will need at least two people as well as a spirit box, some headphones and a blindfold!

To begin the experiment, one person from the group should take the spirit box to another room and plug in some noise cancelling headphones. It is recommended the receiver is also be blindfolded so they can concentrate fully on the white noise as the spirit box begins to scans the radio frequencies.

The rest of the group can then begin asking a series of questions of the spirits, as you would during a normal spirit box experiment. The person in the other room should then repeat any responses that they hear in the static. It is a good idea to use two voice recorders during this experiment so that you can play back both the questions and the alleged answers.

With only one person listening it is believed that this removes the audio pareidolia as they have no idea of the questions being asked. If the questions and answers begin to correlate, you have some very impressive evidence!

Where Can I Buy a Spirit Box?

Spirit boxes can be purchased from a variety of online retailers, as well as specialty stores that specialise in paranormal investigation equipment. It is important to do your research before purchasing a spirit box, as there are a number of different types available and the cost can vary. Whilst the majority of spirit boxes do a similar job, they all have slightly different features.

Best Spirit Box

The P-SB7 T Spirit Box is world famous has been used regularly by famous ghost hunters such as Zak Bagans and his Ghost Adventures team. In our opinion, the P-SB7 is the gold standard in Spirit Box technology and is currently the Best Spirit Box on the market. It is really lightweight and compact, with a good battery life which makes it perfect for taking on an overnight paranormal investigations.

The only negative we have encountered is that the built in speaker isn’t the best quality, despite the good work done by the manufacturer to improve the speaker in the newest models. It is possible to plug in an portal speaker and we would recommend that you do this to make it easier to decipher words that may be coming through. The P-SB7 also scans a huge 320 FM frequencies, which is believed to be the most of any spirit box on the market!

Spirit Box P-SB7 For Ghost Hunting, REV5
  • New latest version - the updated P-SB7 Spirit Box...
  • ATDD added = Automated Temperature Deviation...
  • Improved amped up internal speaker and improved AM...
  • 7 different scanning speeds to choose from
  • Night vision friendly red light screen & Built-in...

Another Spirit Box that is very popular in the market is the S-BOX, which comes with a couple of extra handy features for a similar price point.

This lightweight device actually comes with a built in EVP recorder, with quick play back option, so you can also record Electronic Voice Phenomena whilst the device is scanning the radio frequencies. We’ve already stressed the importance of recording spirit box sessions so it’s a pretty neat feature and manages to kill two birds with one stone!

There is also a flash light built in, but we wouldn’t recommend relying on this during an investigation as it isn’t the best and we would advise taking something a little bit more powerful to help keep safe on your ghost hunt!


In conclusion, spirit boxes are a popular piece of paranormal investigation equipment that have been used in different guises for centuries. While there is no scientific evidence to support the idea that spirit boxes actually work, many people believe that they can help to detect and interpret messages from the spirit world.

Whether or not you believe in the power of spirit boxes, they can be a great tool for paranormal investigators and we believe they can provide evidence of paranormal activity!

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