Zero Budget Paranormal investigator Starter Kit: By Heather Jane Metcalf

One is a match and the other is kerosene! Heather Jane Metcalf and Makenzi Oman represent the Salt Lake City team with a review of their most recent investigation, and a discussion about investigator training, energy experiments and what to do when your witness interview gets…out of hand.

What is the scariest thing about paranormal investigating? I’m sure plenty of scenarios come to mind when asked that question. However for me personally, it isn’t the potential encounters with entities or even the possible dangers of venturing into condemned properties that sets me ill at ease. I find most problems of that nature can be solved with a good head on your shoulders and a fair amount of protection and willpower. So what is it you may ask is the scariest thing about paranormal investigating? By far, I would say it is the cost of equipment that often are not even necessary.

Plenty of paranormal investigators in main stream media are seen sporting the most recent, cutting edge technology for spirit communication. The evidence they are able to obtain with these resources are both exciting and riveting. But, is that to say that any would be investigators have to either be rolling in cash or have a mysterious wealthy beneficiary? One would hope not. So what is one who has little to no resources at their disposal to do?

Well dear readers, I will tell you.  The answer lies in the most advanced pieces of technology that most of us already own. Your smart phone! I know that the simple answer I just provided is a lot easier said then done however.

The other predicament amateur investigators face is the high saturation of fake investigation or “entertainment” apps in the store. So instead of having you wade through the copious amounts of fake voice boxes or EMF detectors, the Crypto Science Society Paranormal team has done it for you. Your Welcome.

Here we have compiled what we perceive as the highest quality apps for real life investigations on a low, or nonexistent budget.

#1 The Portal

Created by Paranormal Shadows UK, in collaboration with Steve Huff of Huff Paranormal. This app is a spirit box that, when used correctly, produces extraordinary results. The proper way to use this app to the potential it was made for, would best be described by the man who made it. On his YouTube channel, Steve Huff provides a description of how to make the software work best for you. As mentioned during our investigation, the equipment we use isn’t the device for communication, our bodies and minds are. The equipment is simply a conduit for comunication.

As mentioned by Huff, one would not simply be able to turn the device on without any preparation and get crystal clear responses. To commence comunication start by getting into a meditative state and begin by focusing on the entity you wish to communicate with. This does take time and practice, and if you aren’t used to meditation it might be time to start, or look into a less advanced software. In some cases, those who are more practiced at this will find that the app mostly helps to verify any information gained via meditation.

The app sweeps internet radio stations backward to limit any false positives. The entities can manipulate the audio on the radios to create words and even sentences. Instead of using white noise which hinders communication, the program has no background interference. One of the closest apps you can get to having a phone call with the other side for free! Unfortunately, this app is not available on iOS devices. With any spirit box, it is important to RECORD YOUR SESSION. Spirits use audio to communicate, which means you may detect something else said during playback that you didn’t with your ears.

This app is offered in a “Plus” version for $1.99 on the app store.

The Portal is a free precursor to another of Steve Huffs impressive software the SCD2, which is a highly advanced voice box that unfortunately can only be used on windows or windows emulated devices. In addition to this the SCD2 is not free. It does at this time cost approximately $20 and can be purchased for use at the link in the description below, as it is a program and not found on the app store as of the time of this publication.

#2 Ultimate EMF Detector

A must have software in any investigators repertoire is an EMF detector. EMF (electro magnetic frequencies) are everywhere. Electronics give off EMF, our bodies give off small amounts and most importantly, spirits are made of it. Because of the high potential for contamination and false positives it is extremely important to be as objective as possible. Before any investigation, baseline EMF records should be gathered in every area you plan to investigate in. The biggest false positives come from electrical lighting, so make sure you get a good baseline from those as well.

However, electric lights are also how you can test an EMF detector app for authentication. If you hold it up to a light source and the detector spikes, you know its the real deal.

The Ultimate EMF Detector is a handy app that is awesome if you like various EMF detector interfaces. It has 3 detectors to pick from in the free version. Classic, Simple & Advanced. The classic view shows an analog detector, while the simple & Advanced show a digital view. The advanced view also displays a graph of EMF activity. All versions provide instructions on how the many features work.

#3 Ghost Hunting Tools (Detector)

You’ll know the app by the image of a blue hand print in the app store. Out of all the apps we use, this one is by far the one we get the most use out of. Nicknamed the word box (by us), the app holds banks of words the entities can manipulate and pick from to communicate. It holds a word history for fast access, as well as an EMF detector in the form of a line graph. The graph changes color depending on how strong the EMF is.  While being simple to use, keep in mind the possibility if occasional false positives, but in order to verify simply reference the EMF on the top of the screen. Remember to record your sessions so no evidence is overlooked!

#4 GhostDetector by Talgame

Yes, it’s another EMF detector app, no harm in being overly thorough.  Apart from this detector being wonderfully sensitive, it also has a few different interfaces that I personally find very nostalgic. The first of which looking suspiciously like the handmade EMF detector used by a favorite monster hunter of mine from the tv series Supernatural. The last (which you have to pay for to get) being the PKE Meter used by everyone’s favorite childhood paranormal investigators the Ghost Busters!

P.S. This app was able to pick up the EMF coming off of my Sunshine Aura Quartz necklace, which is an energetic enhancer and helps my chakras/Chi flow best. 

#5 Sensor Box, & Audio Recorder 

The last two and probably most essential apps are going to be the easiest to find, but do not have a specific name because they will be different for every phone company. Most phones come preloaded with a pretty reliable if not simple audio recorder.  It’s important to find one that you can playback at a moment’s notice, and record in the background while using other apps.

A sensor box is an app that will be specific to your phone but can still be found in the app store. It’s an app where you can test all the sensors in your phone all in one place. Things like the sound sensor, magnetic sensor, proximity sensor, etc. Quite a few paranormal investigating apps will require you to have these on your phone anyway, or they simply won’t work. For instance, your phone won’t be able to use an electromagnetic field detector if it doesn’t have the sensor for it.

iPhone Specific Apps

For those who cant download the Portal app there is some iOS offered alternatives fo this specific spirit box. Because it is so highly recommended by not only the Crypto Science Society Paranormal team but also other professional investigators, we thought it appropriate to mention them.

#1 Necrophonic by: ChillSeekers

This app is also co produced by Steve Huff from Huff Paranormal and is used on a few of his more minor investigations. Like the Portal, it does take some meditative focus to use, so dont get discouraged if at first all you receive is a garbled mess of backwards phonetics.

The app uses banks of word fragments called phonetics played backwards that spirits can pick and choose from with their energy in order to communicate.

This app costs $9.99 on the app store.

#2 Spiritus Ghost Box by ChillSeekers

Much like Necrophonic, this app uses banks of phonetics to communicate. This app however has a few extra features. It includes some audio effects options such as echo, reverb, phasers and crusher. The app also includes a visual aspect that other apps do not. When going into Visal ITC the app goes into a cloudy color display screen where supposedly spirits can use the graphics to attempt to manifest visually.

This app costs $12.99 on the app store.


The most important thing to remember when using any paranormal app is that, even though you download it from the same place you get your games, it is not a toy, it is a tool. Just like any tool, they can be potentially dangerous if used incorrectly. There are a lot of apps on the market made specifically for “entertainment purposes” but can actually be used for investigating. When using any of these apps it is extremely important to be safe both physically and psychically.  Before any investigation or communication session make sure to have all your bases covered. Be prepared, and be respectful. This is never something to be done simply for entertainment. 

In addition, if seeking out other apps not listed here make sure to test them before using them in an investigation. This should be done in an environment with the least amount of contamination.  If you find an app that insists that there is activity when a reliable app says otherwise, it might be fake or poor quality.  

Just remember this is a learning experience. The best way to go into an investigation is with zero expectations. The more you focus on an expectation the more likely you are to unintentionally manifest it. The paranormal is not something to be feared, it is something to be respected and understood. Just remember, be kind, be ready, and be inquisitive! And until next time, keep questioning!

All apps can be found in the app store, and google play or on the web.