This is an ongoing list of video equipment needed for ghost hunters and paranormal investigations.



Fluorescent Ultraviolet Light (Black Light)

There’s been a lot of work done in the paranormal using infrared lighting, but the use of ultraviolet light is still a relatively new practice. If you intend to use ultraviolet lighting, PLEASE follow this advice. Use the fluorescent bulbs that you can buy at Spencer’s in any mall for 20 bucks. Don’t use the little incandescent bulbs that you can get in the grocery store. They suck. At the same time, don’t get more expensive, or stronger UV lighting because it can be dangerous to your eyes, and cause skin cancer. That also sucks.


Infrared Illuminator

Infrared is a frequency that the naked eye cannot see. Fortunately, a camera CAN see this frequency. It can reflect off of OTHER things that the naked eye ALSO cannot see. KnowhaddImean? If you look in the picture to the left, you’ll be able to see all of the tiny little LED bulbs on the device. The more LED bulbs, the more light the illuminator is gonna emit. Buy them where surveillance equipment is sold. I’ve seen cheap illuminators for less than 50 bucks, but more often than not, you’ll be paying more.




Basic Camcorder

Video evidence of the paranormal is the most compelling evidence that any paranormal investigator can capture. You need a camera to make that happen. Any video camera will do, but with the way technology is today, you’re best bet is to go digital. With digital you can erase, re-record, and most importantly, you can digitally upload your video to a computer, and scan through every detail to find your truth. Go to Bust Buy, or Circuit City, or some place like that. They start at about 300 bucks, but shop around. You might get lucky.


Bullet Camera

I like bullet cameras. Their only real problem is that they have no internal way to save you’re recording. You need a VCR, or a DVR, and most of the time, they can’t record audio. You need to add a microphone to the setup, and you’ll also wanna buy some BNC cable. They come in different sizes and different features from B/W to color, and different resolutions. You can even buy them with infrared LEDS built in! The more features, the more expensive, but I’ve seen infrared bullet cameras for only 30 bucks. Look online for a good deal.


Thermal Image Camera

HOLY CRAP IS THIS THING EXPENSIVE. I figured I’d start with saying that. It’s at least 8000 dollars. The only way your team is getting this is if you have a LOT of donations, you charge for investigations, you have some sort of corporate backing, or you have members that either don’t care about money, or are SUPER committed. This thing detects heat in the air, and then translates it into visible images on the screen. It’s very simple. All the hot and cold spots can be SEEN. I want one. :(


Recorders & Systems


Video Cassette Recorder (VCR)

VCR’s have been around for about 30 years. I’m sure that you have one, and if you don’t, you can buy them in any department store for 50 bucks, or less. Honestly, living in the middle of the digital age, a lot of investigators have upgraded to DVD recorders, or even Digital Video Recorders. On the other hand, some investigators don’t want to spend all that extra cash to go digital. You can easily hook a bullet camera up to this thing at a fraction of the price, and hit record.


VHS Tape

If you’re gonna go the route of using a VCR then you’re going to want to buy an AMPLE supply of blank VHS tapes. You also want to keep in mind that these work the same way as audio tapes for recording E.V.P. Once you’ve used a tape, and gone over your evidence, you should NEVER use that tape in the field again. Images from the previous recordings can show up and give you false positives. ALWAYS use brand new tapes. Good thing that they’re only a couple bucks for a few tapes. They’re sold everywhere.


Video Monitor

When you’re setting up your cameras, you NEED to know which direction that they’re pointing, and that you’ve got them set up correctly. To do this, you have to have a monitor set up at your base of operations. A monitor can be anything from a computer screen to a television set. All you have to do is make sure that it has the right inputs, and outputs for your audio and video. You know what I like to use? I bought a few 20 dollar Memorex 5 inch television sets at K-Mart. They’re black & white, but were perfect for the price. Unfortunately, that particular model isn’t available anymore, but I would recommend going small, and handheld for this item.


USB DVR Adapter

These are freakin’ cool. They have a lot of potential to make our lives a lot easier in this field. Unfortunately, the frames per second recording is still a little low on most devices like this, and the technology has room for improvement. All it does is, you plug it into your USB port on your computer, and then you can plug a bunch of cameras into it, and record the video directly to your computer. You’ll need a fast processor, a buttload of hard drive space, and RAM. I’ve seen them for less than 20 bucks on New Egg. Compare that to a DVR system.


Laptop Computer

If you’re gonna use something like the USB DVR Adapter mentioned above, you’ll need a computer to run your camera system. Honestly, I recommend having one there at your base of operations anyway just to keep everything organized. Laptops run anywhere from 400 dollars and up. If you’re going to get one to take the place of a DVR then you’re going to want to own a higher end model.


Digital Video Recorder (DVR)

Here’s where things can get a bit expensive. If you don’t know what this is, think ‘VCR’ but only digital, and a lot more complicated. TIVO for example is a version of a DVR. The DVR’s you use in the paranormal field are the ones used for surveillance, and not for recording movies. They’re designed to connect to multiple cameras. and a monitor specifically for this sort of stuff. You’ll want to do some shopping around for something like this, and you’ll be spending 500 bucks or more.


Closed Circuit Television System (CCTV)

Alright! So, now you know about VCR’s, Cameras, DVR’s, monitors, and all that other crap. A Closed Circuit Television system is basically all that crap, all rolled into one package. You have a choice with a system like this, to either go digital with a DVR or analog with a VCR. I’d DEFINITELY recommend going digital. You better do your homework, and shop around to get EXACTLY what you want. Blowing more than 1500 bucks on a system that doesn’t work the way you want it to, would be a BIG mistake.


Other Stuff


Black Sheets or Curtains (Again)

On our Equipment Basics Page, this is already listed to cover things up that reflect the flash from your camera back at your lens, and create false positives in your pictures. The same can be said for when you’re recording video, but sometimes you can’t even tell until it’s too late. See that Infrared Illuminator mentioned above? Even though we can’t see it with the naked eye, it is VERY bright, and WILL reflect from everything, and anything. Your camera WILL pick it up, and ruin your shot if you aren’t careful. Cover reflective surfaces.


Extension Cords

Ya gotta be able to plug shit in, man! Seriously tho, this is elementary stuff here. You must have plenty of these on hand. You can get them anywhere for next to nothing. The thing is, you NEVER know where you’re going to want to set up your base of operations in the field. At the same time, you have no idea where the power outlets are going to be. Be prepared. If you have enough of these, you don’t have to worry. You can supply power to all of your equipment from anywhere.


Power Strips

Just like the extension cords mentioned above, you can get these pretty much anywhere for just a couple of bucks. Again, have many of these on hand just in case. If you can, get some with surge protectors.
I’m just typing this here because the page won’t look right with a place with no text next to an icon. I wish I had more to say about Power Strips, but unfortunately, there’s really no more to them.
Whaddya want me to say?



This is an optional item. Some people use them, and some don’t. If you can get your cameras where you want them to be without tripods then obviously, you don’t need them. Personally, I like them because they make camera placement easy, and you can be confident that your cameras are gonna stay where you put them. Also, they don’t HAVE to be super expensive. I’ve seen nice ones at discount stores for only 20 bucks or so. On the other hand, you can spend hundreds if you REALLY want to go the full nine. It’s all up to you.


Cord Reels

When investigating in the field, wires tend to be everywhere. You got extension cords, audio cords, BNC cable to go to each one of your cameras. It can be a bit overwhelming, and hard to manage. The best thing to do is keep things organized by using a cord reel. For those of you that don’t know, it’s a pretty simple concept. Its a reel… For cords. Duh! When you use your equipment you pull the cord out of the thing. When you’re done, you reel it all back in. An empty one is not expensive. We’re talkin’ 5 to 10 bucks at Home Depot.


BNC Cable

BNC stands for “Bayonet Neill Concelman “. But, Who cares? All it really is is coax cable connecting your cameras to your VCR or DVR. You’re gonna need a buttload of it. When you buy some make sure that it is “Siamese”. Siamese is BNC cable that is also attached to a power cable which will connect to the 12 volt power adapter that MOST bullet cameras operate on. Having Siamese makes you need one less extension cord per camera. That’s a beautiful thing. Shop around I’ve seen 150 feet of this stuff for only 25 bucks.





Taken DIRECTLY from Wikipedea… “VirtualDub is video capture and video editing software for Microsoft Windows, written by Avery Lee. It was originally created for the purpose of compressing anime videos.”
For us in the paranormal field, the program can come in handy for capturing images from AVI files recorded in the field. The program is completely free, and can be downloaded from the VirtualDub website.


Adobe Premiere

Adobe seems to have all artistic markets cornered with their software. For Images, they have Photoshop, for audio they have Audition, and for video, they have Adobe Premiere. This is widely considered to be the best video editing program on the market. Adobe has it as a subscription that starts at about 20 bucks per month. Go to their website to rent it from them.

I hope you found this page useful. If you didn’t then I guess I suck.