Frank’s Box – Reviewed

Frank’s Box is a device optimized by Frank Sumption, sometimes described (but not by Mr. Sumption) as “the telephone to the dead.”

Is “Frank’s Box” a telephone to the dead?

Frank Sumption wasn’t the first to work with this concept, but results from his research have been among the most impressive so far.

Others have tried variations of the concept — a radio receiver that scans a wide range of stations, “grabbing” snippets of sounds and words, to form messages — with some success.

(The popular “Shack Hack” was one attempt, but – as some designed it – it lacked the clarity or durability of its higher-quality counterparts.)

Frank – now deceased – seemed to make these boxes, one at a time, and no two looked the same or produce identical results.  (The photo above is symbolic.  As far as I know, no Frank’s Box looks like an actual telephone.)

I read the EVP-ITC list online for several months, and I exchanged correspondence with Mr. Sumption, but — even — I’m uncertain of what was (and still is) going on.

I tend to take things at face value and… this seems to be a fairly complex subject with conflicting opinions.

(There’s been a lot of static on the EVP-ITC list, due to very vocal skeptics.  That said, I have heard recordings on that list that claim to be genuine and — if the recordings truly represent what a Frank’s Box can do — they’re groundbreaking.)

I haven’t worked with a Frank’s Box myself.  If and when I do, I’ll happily provide a review.  (The boxes are very difficult to find in the wild, and I’m not sure how or why Mr. Sumption decided to offer them to people. I know both genuine researchers and questionable personalities who own them.)

For now, I try to keep my critical thinking skills engaged, and remember that absolutely anyone can fake “results” to support or dispute what others are saying.  Particularly if money is exchanging hands… well, as the TV show used to say, “Be careful out there.”

However, it would be impossible to mention what’s popularly called “the Frank’s Box” without talking about Christopher Moon’s work.


Chris Moon is a paranormal researcher. He was the founder of the controversial magazine, Haunted Times.  I’m not sure it still exists; it was on hiatus after publishing at least one article that, to me, seemed entirely false and misrepresented professional ghost researchers.

But, when I first met Chris, I thought he was a funny and sincere guy. I still believe that he can achieve remarkable and authentic results with the Frank’s Boxes that he owns. I want to like him, but I have some significant, unresolved questions.

A historical note

I used to link to archives of Chris’s website, instead of his current sites. Then, even the archive sites (like the Wayback Machine) removed their links.

At the time, I said, “I can’t recommend that website. It could be dangerous to your computer.  It was a continuing problem, since I first wrote this article in 2010.  Here’s a screenshot from Google on 4 Nov 2013, showing Google’s warning.”

Haunted Times site - viruses?

So, given that history, I’m cautious about linking to, but my concerns could be unfounded. I want to give him the benefit of the doubt.

Chris’s successes with the Frank’s Box brought the device to the attention of serious investigators.

Some people believe that much of that success is due to Chris’s own gifts as a medium, as opposed to the device he’s using.

At a 2010 conference, my own experiences left me with no doubt that something extraordinary is going on with Chris Moon or one of the Frank’s Boxes he owns, or both.

The box “said” things that no one could have known, except me. And, it “spoke” using words – and an accent – that Chris couldn’t have predicted, even from unguarded hints I might have given.


The credibility of Frank’s Boxes open doors even wider to problems we already have in this field: Charlatans and con artists.

People can be very vulnerable when they’ve lost someone dear to them, or have fears related to death.

After all, if you could pay a certain fee or fulfill a request, and you could talk directly with someone on the other side — via a “telephone to the dead” — well, I think most people would.

Would a Frank’s Box work in the hands of an unscrupulous medium?  I’m not sure.  I haven’t seen anyone except Chris Moon use one.  I don’t have enough experience to confidently endorse either Chris or the Frank’s Box.


Another high-profile researcher says she owns several actual Frank’s Boxes (acquired from Frank Sumption). I’m not sure if that’s true.

When I spoke with her, she insisted that Frank’s Boxes aren’t reliable for ghost research. She said that a Mini-Box is a better choice.

But, I can’t trust that information, either.

Here’s why I’m skeptical: She promised to return in two or three weeks, to demonstrate the Mini-Box. It was kind of a quid pro quo for information I gave her, for one of her next books.

She never honored that promise, and has avoided me, ever since.  (But, to be fair: she listed me in her book as one of her resources.)

Until I’m more confident about these kinds of devices, I recommend experimenting. Try every real-time communication device that you can. (Borrow them, or spend time with someone who owns one. Do not spend money you can’t afford to lose, on devices that may not work.)

Compare your results at home (or at any single, stable location) against results at “haunted” sites.  Frank Sumption seemed pretty adamant that the box works anywhere you have it. He’s said there’s no point in taking it to a “haunted” site.

So, from what I’ve seen, a Frank’s Box can be remarkable.

Is it always…? I have no idea.

I am 100% convinced that it can work in the hands of Chris Moon.

The voice I heard on it would have come through in any location.  The deceased had no connection with the location where Chris made contact via the Frank’s Box. As far as I know, during her lifetime, she’d never been within 100 miles of that site.

However, I can’t claim that Chris always uses integrity with the Frank’s Boxes. At the time I met him, and shortly afterwards, there were some very big red flags related to how he ran his business.

One was a message Chris said he heard through the Frank’s Box. Supposedly, the message was an extraordinary claim (prediction) that came from a famous, deceased scientist.

That claim was about me, personally. (A couple of days later, I learned that Chris had made the exact same claim to another woman at the event. I’m not sure it was a coincidence.)

To date, I’ve seen no evidence that the claim valid. That makes me uneasy. But, as you can see, everything I’ve seen in connection with Frank’s Boxes has been unsettling.

Are those boxes fraud magnets? Do they cause the owners to say things that aren’t trustworthy?

I haven’t a clue. Frank passed away some time ago, before he had time to give me one of his Frank’s Boxes.

If you’ve had experiences with a Frank’s Box, especially if you’ve used one yourself, I hope you’ll leave a comment below.

4 thoughts on “Frank’s Box – Reviewed”

  1. I recently acquired a “ghost box” called the P-SB7 — invented my Gary Galka. Gary lost his young daughter to a car accident, and has had success communicating with her through the P-SB7.

    I have only used it a couple of times, and no where that was “actually” haunted, yet. I have so far only gotten real results at my work – where a deceased employee is thought to stick around. We got several responses all in the same voice — some with multiple words. It is not as clear as hearing an evp with your own ears alone, but it seems to work under certain conditions.

    So far, my experience is that you have to be in the right mindset. You have to be calm but serious. You have to speak clearly and the louder the better. And be patient. Sometimes it takes five or ten seconds for a response. I don’t pay much attention to anything that sounds too much like radio static.

    If someone is being silly, either the spirits express disapproval or don’t talk at all. When a coworker asked a silly question, “Were you a pretty girl?” and the male voice who had been talking to us said, “That’s it” and stopped.

  2. In regards to the Frank box, the idea to invent new means to contact spirits is good, but the frank box in our opinion has a fatal flaw. It uses man made radio signals. Skeptics (magazines & websites) claim that all EVP’s are stray radio or TV signals. A recorder does NOT have the technology built in to receive these broadcasts, and because of this, when you get an EVP it is not a man made signal, but a sprit trying to communicate. You can prove this to a skeptic that your EVP’s are authentic.

    When you use a frank box and you hear a voice, is it a spirit, or a DJ, song or ad from the radio station? Can you REALLY say that it’s a voice of a spirit or a radio broadcast, and how do you prove it? Using pieces of equipment that are known to be susceptible to interference from manmade signals, and then trying to pass its results off as paranormal evidence makes non-believers laugh at the paranormal community. (Skeptics groups/magazines LOVE to call out paranormal groups on this one. Let’s stop making it easy for them!)

    We built our own frank box, and then made 100 index cards with colors, shapes, pictures of animals & objects. We would hold up a card and ask the Frank box “what is on this card.” All we wanted to hear was a one word answer of what was on the card. In all the hours of research and out of 100 cards it failed 100%. We never heard any answers and we gave it 3-5 minutes per card. We passed it off to other members over time to do their own research and experiments and log the results. No correct answers were ever given to any members at any location (house or cemetery).

    It was once said “For the frank box to work there must be a signal from an AM or FM” why, they record on a recorder without man made transmissions just fine.

    I feel that the frank box is just a random form of audio matrixing and you open yourselves up to false positives.

    In the end you cannot prove that your recording from the frank box is not just a radio brodcast. Like I said skeptics groups/magazines LOVE to call out paranormal groups on this one. Let’s stop making it easy for them!

    1. Brian,

      Thanks for sharing your opinions and your experiment results.

      I don’t see why man-made radio signals are a “fatal flaw” in Frank’s boxes. Technically speaking, voice recorders are not supposed to have the capability of picking up radio signals. However, there is (admittedly slim) evidence that, under the right conditions, any metal — including dental fillings — can pick up radio signals. So, don’t feel too complacent about the reliability of your voice recorder. The evidence is not wholly conclusive.

      I have yet to prove to a skeptic that EVPs are authentic. If you’ve persuaded a genuine skeptic that your EVP recordings are actually spirit voices, I’d love to know how you did so.

      We’re not trying to “pass off” anything. We’re reporting evidence — for and against certain techniques and equipment — and keeping the discussion open. Frankly, skeptics are perfectly happy to call out the paranormal community at large, when skeptics perceive something as in-house squabbling among us. So, if your goal is to avoid ridicule by skeptics, it’s best to avoid polarizing phrases such as “fatal flaw” regarding equipment with which some of us have had positive experiences.

      If I were to wield that kind of phrase, I’d point out one big problem with your research: You made your own Frank’s box. Many people believe that Frank is in tune with something — I have no idea what — that makes the boxes he personally builds different and more receptive than those built by others, even when they closely follow his plans.

      Some people are going to ridicule us, no matter how compelling our evidence. You’ll still find Flat Earth enthusiasts ridiculing the concept of a round earth. Some people believe no one has landed on Earth’s moon, and others are convinced that different, generally-accepted historical events were false.

      There will always be detractors, no matter what beliefs you’re discussing.

      As of 2009, about 20% of Americans admit to believing in ghosts. Other surveys suggest that the actual number believers may be higher. (The highest I’ve seen is between 60% and 70%.)

      If your campaign is to prove the existing of ghosts to others, you’ve adopted a lofty goal. I applaud you for that. Personally, I’m focusing on research techniques that might clarify the true cause of anomalous activity we call “ghosts.” Towards that end, I’ll keep experimenting and encourage others to do so, as well.

      In my opinion, any experiment in any field is open to false positives. If you know a way to remove them, 100%, I’d be interested in hearing your technique.

      Talking in terms of scientific “proof” is futile. There is no such thing as scientific proof… of anything. We can only demonstrate that some theories are more credible than others.

      For now, experiments with Frank’s boxes are inconclusive. We don’t have adequate laboratory conditions for consistent testing.

      Those of us who’ve had positive, extraordinary experiences with Frank’s boxes and similar devices, are certain that at least some of the boxes produce results best explained as the voice of a spirit.

      Those who haven’t, like those who’ve never encountered something that was clearly a ghost, will remain skeptical.

      Fiona Broome

  3. There is much at stake in this site so unlike the meandrings at mandela effect,i will keep to meaningful findings.A couple of days back i got an indication of spirit activity,as a hobby i tinker with batteries,there were 3 of them lying here and there and by some quirk they all drained off simultaneously two of them irrevocably.It is well known that dc power sources are a favourite food for spirits,what’s new is that only those batteries drained that were unattached to any equipment,those in phones or lights or clocks were unaffected.

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