Secrets of Scientology: The E-Meter

Devil Meter

John Travolta

Priscilla Presley

Tom Cruise & Katie Holmes (parody)

Welcome to the Internet's most extensive E-Meter site. The device above is a Hubbard electro-psychometer (E-meter): a crude lie detector used by Scientology auditors (counselors) to examine a person's mental state. Scientologists claim the device allows people to "see a thought". In the hands of a trained auditor, they believe it can uncover "hidden crimes". John Travolta swears by it. And so do Jenna Elfman and Priscilla Presley. Here you will learn the truth about this device.

How The E-Meter Works

Auditor Training



``By itself, this meter does nothing.'' -- Excerpt from a disclaimer found in every E-meter book, and on the device itself.

In this photo, a course supervisor monitors the performance of student auditors at a Scientology training facility. Notice that the meter's tone arm is worked with the thumb of the left hand; the right hand is used to take notes. Left-handed auditors must purchase a left-handed E-meter, where the positions of the dials and knobs are reversed.

Schematics for Early E-Meters

Embarassing E-Meter Facts

Look Inside the Mark Super VII E-Meter

What's Next? The Mark VIII Ultra!

The Mark VIII Ultra E-Meter shown at left (click for larger version), was manufactured in Japan in 2004, on a production line that once made Sony Walkmans. It was finally released in November of 2013.

Some folks think the new meter looks a lot like the Easy Bake oven, a popular kid's toy.

Here's a drawing of the meter that came out several years before its release. Look at those cans! The TA counter is visible behind the dark plastic wedge at the top center of the meter. This is Russ Bellin's baby. Too bad he stuck with an old-style serial port connector instead of putting in a USB port. Those all had to be replaced before the meter was finally released.

There were 20,000 of these white elephants sitting in the Bandini warehouse in Los Angeles, awaiting the day when DM decided to release them to the world. That day finally came in November 2013.

For more juicy background details on the meter, read this and this and this.

Here is US Patent #6011992, System for Measuring and Indicating Changes in the Resistance of a Living Body, which covers the Mark VIII Ultra and perhaps some of its predecessors.

E-Meter Maintenance


E-Meter Humor

A Fictional E-Meter

Peter Alexander's Scientology parody, an independent film called The Profit, features a device called a "mind meter" that is modeled after Scientology's own E-meter. You can see more pictures at The Profit: the Movie Scientology Won't Let You See. The movie's official web site is

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David S. Touretzky
Computer Science Department & Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3891