White noise is the random non-descript static sound produced by various electronic devices, water falls, running water, the sound of a fan etc. The sound covers and combines all wavelengths and frequencies. In this way it is like the color white which is really a combination of all colors. Hence the name white noise – the combination of all sounds. Examples of common white noise sources are the radio or television static when set to an empty channel, the hum of an electric fan motor and the babbling sound of a fast movie stream or brook.

There are two theories on the use of white noise for EVP ghost investigations:

Theory 1

Using white noise during  EVP investigations relies on the random sound reorganization theory of EVP formation. That theory holds that entities take sounds in the ambient environment and somehow reorganize them into coherent words for us to hear. By providing a white noise source (or at least investigating near a white noise source) you are providing a base of raw sound (“raw material”) for the entity to use to form communication. However, a significant drawback to use this technique the white noise can be hard to filter out later when you analyze your recordings and can thus contaminate an otherwise good EVP recording.

White noise can be made from many sources. As previously mentioned, a radio set to an empty channel, an electric fan or similar motor, the babbling of a stream or a running faucet are all good sources of white noise. Additionally, there are white noise generators available (often sold as sleep aids) and software that will generate a white noise signal from a PC.

Theory 2

This theory is that white noise can be used to filter out background noise or enhance EVPs when listening to recordings. To use white noise in this manner place the EVP recorder player (or speaker) on one side of you and the white noise source on the other sides. Stand (or sit) in the middle and turn both on. As you listen to the recording the white noise source will either filter out background noise on the recording and/or enhance any EVPs captured.

There is some evidence this may work. Noise canceling headphones is based on a similar principle. These types of headphones play low levels of white noise through the speakers to filter out surrounding noise and enhance the quality of the audio. Some EVP researchers and paranormal investigators use noise-canceling headphones and find them very helpful.


The effectiveness of white noise for EVP recording is debatable. Some paranormal researchers insist it acts like an attractor, immediately drawing in any entities in the area like moths to a flame. Other researchers claim no significant increase in EVPs or other paranormal activity while using white noise and feel it’s more a distraction than anything (the white noise has to be filtered out later while trying to find possible EVPs). Further research is continuing.


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