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☠ Cipher

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  1. Which Frequency Is Running In Each Mode?

    I should probably explain that my curiosity about what any machine is doing, or doing differently extends beyond a brain teaser. There's that element too, and I'm sure I'd wonder regardless, but I have a background in building and repairing electronics, mostly computers and drones. This had been up to recently just dealing with preprogrammed parts. Some time ago when Radio Shack was going out of business I bought out the electronic components of a couple local stores when it got to be pennies on the dollar, and so I've been studying electronic engineering and experimenting with prototype boards, breadboards, arduino, Raspberry Pi and learning kits. I've ordered Carl's book Inside the Metal Detector. I've built some simple, very basic metal detectors. So it's something I have a growing interest in, and the resources to experiment more and more as time goes on. One thing I've not seen on the DIY side, are any multifrequency kits. We have single frequency and pulse, but nobody has ventured into that area. Where it will eventually lead, I have no clue. I've taken a similar interest in auto mechanics, home renovation, paralegal/PI studies, cosmology, social sciences, political science, earned varying credentials, and then I'm happy to know as much as I can. I always have to be learning something, and the magic that goes on inside these boxes and behind these buttons has always captivated me. I was like a kid in a candy store when I programmed my first micro controller. Over the next few years I want to soak up every bit of information as I can and by the end of it, have a deep understanding of how these machines function. I have as much fun with this as I do actually using them, maybe more.
  2. Which Frequency Is Running In Each Mode?

    On the receive/processing side of things I have no doubt that Multi-IQ is doing something fundamentally different than Spectra and even BBS/FBS as you're describing and I've been wondering if the Equinox having its fundamental frequencies so closely harmonically related gives a boost, particularly on the high end, which was the weak spot of BBS/FBS.
  3. Which Frequency Is Running In Each Mode?

    That's an equally good hypothesis. I just don't know that I can see how the V3i and Equinox machines transmit in a similar way. I'm still very early in my study of these concepts and it's very possible I don't quite have this down so, I have to defer to your knowledge and I think anyone else here reading this thread should too, but let me explain why I think a bit different on it. With the V3i, we know for sure that it transmits concurrently because Carl has told us so. We also see evidence of that in multi, with the transmit power behind 3 signals, there's a noticeable depth loss. When it is focused on one signal we see a gain. This is described in the V3i manual. This has been, up to the Equinox, generally accepted as how concurrent multifrequency stacks up against a single frequency when power is focused rather than divided. In my mind, there should only be two ways around such a power difference. One would be amplifying the multifrequency tx signal in some way. The other would be to fire each frequency in a sequence so that there's not a constant division, but rather an ultra rapid firing of the signals. Sequential Multifrequency. They are then demodded in a sort of time domain analysis without filters. The use of time domain is where I believe Multi-IQ builds on FBS/BBS. The way in which they almost act like a pulse machine, while preserving the best of VLF discrimination. Below are the basis for how I'm currently thinking on it. The first is a quote from Carl Moreland. The second is a screenshot from Tom's forum. “A square-wave drive TX produces a triangle-wave current and magnetic field, which produces exponential eddy responses in targets. You can sample the RX response with early/mid/late sample windows and effectively get X and R from this. In a sequential multifrequency (SMF) where short & long duration TX drives are temporally separated, you can easily use parallel demod channels with proper timing to extract the X & R for the different frequencies. No pre-filtering needed since the responses are not intermixed. In a concurrent multifrequency (CMF) where short & long duration TX drives are intermixed, the RX signal is bandpass-filtered into each frequency channel for X & R demodulation. Then the signal is closer to a sine wave and can be demodulated using continuous-time methods, exactly the same as a single-frequency design. The White's V3 demonstrated that when the channel filtering isn't good enough, frequency cross-talk makes ground balancing exceptionally difficult. That's why the V3 GB doesn't work as well as it should. - Carl- Geotech forum..”.
  4. Which Frequency Is Running In Each Mode?

    Not at all lol. I think your position is the most prevalent. Most people just want to use any given product whether it be a metal detector or a phone etc. I'm the odd man out in this scenario. Jumping into the engineering behind electronics requires a few elements. One is the desire to understand it. Two is the ability. Three is a sustained effort. You could have element 2 but if you have no desire to get into it, it's no reflection on intelligence. I'd never read into that at all. Where we probably start making judgments about that is where people have element 1 without 2 or 3 and use "a little bit of knowledge" to base or start an argument on without qualifiers in areas of uncertainty.
  5. Value Of E-trac

    I personally think the prices of all machines not named Equinox have nowhere to go but down. Now is the best time to unload machines like the etrac and CTX-3030. Once those 600s and 800s reach enough hands and production is keeping up with demand, values will begin the plummet. In line with Steve's comment about old computers, I remember when I first purchased my 2012 MacBook Pro. With its maxed out specs it was once a $3,200 machine. Now I think I'd be lucky to get $500-$600 for it. Metal detectors hold value longer than that obviously, but that downhill slide is coming very soon with the Equinox meeting most people's expectations, and other machines about to hit the market over the next year or two. I've spent significant time with many FBS machines, including the CTX-3030, and countless hours in research about any machines that matter. and my personal opinion is that the Equinox is every bit as deep as those machines, and not just with silver. But the Equinox is also more sensitive and deeper on Gold than the FBS machines. It's faster than the FBS machines, lighter than FBS machines, and better balanced across all conductors. All it lacks is access to some of the playthings. It could very well be possible that Minelab's marketing did not expect the Equinox to be as good as it actually is against machines in its own stable. But in neither case do I think they are shooting themselves in the foot. The Equinox is a huge success. The high demand for it is something you usually only see in mainstream tech devices. You look at the CTX and it has to be expensive to produce. The Equinox looks comparatively much cheaper to produce and they are better off selling boat loads of machines at $649-$900 (mostly $900) than a few CTX and etrac at $1,500-$2,500.
  6. I'm used to the word "obsolete" being thrown around as a complete all things tech nut. In tech parlance it can carry different connotations. It's most often used by users themselves rather than the actual tech companies. It seems to automatically follow from a statement by Apple for example that they will no longer support or issue updates for a certain product or platform. The end user, following the lead of tech bloggers, then calls the product or platform obsolete and it is then avoided like a plague but for some stubborn old timers and cult followers. Minelab was I'm sure very aware of the connotations of their chosen verbiage and how people would run away with it, because as I alluded to, you generally don't hear that word from a company directly, so it hits harder when you do. I understood immediately what it would have to mean for their purposes though. That they had packed into one machine what it would take several single frequency machines to accomplish. General use single frequency machines can no longer stand on their own as proximate competition to their new models. And that is what it has meant in the tech sector too in reality. That the gap in ability has so widened between the new innovative product and the old that disposable capital being equal, no reasonable person would choose the older "outdated" or "obsolete" products, though they will still work at a base level.
  7. My Folded Equinox Modification

    These arm rest covers for the Sovereign etc fit the Equinox well and look nice. $25-$30 on eBay, Amazon, Serious Detecting etc.
  8. A little tip for everyone. You can use all the screen protectors that come in the pack if you take and cut the optional languages off with a razor if it bothers you. All are best applied using lens cleaning wipes to prepare the surface, then leaving a spritz or two of water on the screen. Apply right on top of the spritz. Then take a credit card to squeegee it. It will come out bubble free.
  9. Very exciting. I look forward to hopefully going back to First Texas for my best gear. For now, I'm having a lot of fun with my V3i and getting better daily with my Equinox, but I had a feeling in the back of my mind that my time with the Nox may be short lived when I bought it. I have no doubt FT has the talent to make the best products.
  10. I'm still pretty early in my comparison of each, but I will say that after today I'm very impressed with the depth of the Equinox. It runs like a multifrequency F75 LTD in terms of depth and speed. I do find myself still reaching for my V3i often. It's worth noting that the V3i is no slouch in the recovery area either. It's processor is plenty powerful for what it is tasked with. It also has 200 points of recovery/reactivity adjustment and when you begin experimenting with it, it's a surprisingly quick machine. The weakness of the V3i vs the Equinox is partly going to come down to the ground balance systems. The poor ground balance system of the V3i kind of relegates it to being best suited to mild-moderate inland soil or dry sand conditions. In those conditions though, I have a hard time imagining the Equinox will ever be my go-to outside of the water. I do enjoy the extra information, and so far the V3i to me is just more fun to use. There are so many ways to minimize or monitor junk, which to me is the primary purpose of running a VLF over a pulse induction machine. I find myself digging much more junk with the Equinox. But I also do not discount that my current position and preferences could evolve with more experience. I haven't yet dialed it in the way I like to run like I have the V3i. It's an entirely different setup than I've gotten used to. Once I've gotten all my little tweaks in place it might be an entirely different story.
  11. Which Frequency Is Running In Each Mode?

    To me there's nothing wrong with wondering about how it works so long as a person has the mental faculties to process the possible answers. Metal detecting technology is far more complex than most people would imagine. So whether out of curiousity, out of hopes that deeper understanding will make one a better detectorist, or whether you'd rather not know and just focus on the product, all positions are valid. I'm in camp one and two, and I figure that even if it doesn't make me a better detectorist, I love wrapping my mind around complex issues. To me multi-IQ is just a smarter and more balanced approach to multifrequency. FBS is a successful platform, but it lacked sensitivity to small, low conductors. I believe what Minelab has always done with multifrequency is run it in a sequential pulse like manner (utilizing time and frequency domain). This has an advantage over concurrent multifrequency, like the V3i, where there is very little depth loss vs any single frequency and it doesn't require filters. The dead giveaway that multi-IQ is using a sequential approach is the reports of no loss of depth between single frequencies and multi-IQ, and the way Multi-IQ seems to perform as well as single frequencies in nearly any scenario. This probably wouldn't be the case if the frequencies were run concurrently. I believe in multi-IQ Minelab has taken their FBS approach and expanded on it. I don't believe every mode uses 5 frequencies. But the system is able to utilize the best of the available frequencies for the task at hand. For example, in gold mode, frequencies 5 and 10 would be of little value . It's quite possible these frequencies are not utilized at all in Gold mode, and if they are, they are likely run or processed at a lower ratio in the sequence than 20 and 40. Conversely, 20 and 40 would not be as stable in beach mode where lower frequencies handle conductive salt better. It is possible they are not utilized at all in beach mode or if they are, then at a much lower ratio than 5 and 10. This is what they mean by weighting. The frequencies best suited to the task at hand are given the most repetition in transmission and/or in the processing algorithm, whereas with FBS it appeared that at least in terms of transmission, the same two frequencies were fired at every task (3.125khz and 25khz.) with the higher frequency a bit underpowered.
  12. Too Funny Not To Share!

    In my case it would be the V3i. I rejected and sold the Deus as not for me a while back. I just think that there's something about multifrequency that no single frequency machine can compete with, even if there are many individual to pick from. Minelab has a winner here that has balanced out that FBS preference for deep silver, while overlooking small gold. I've always been tempted by the CTX-3030 too, almost solely for the pinpoint target trace feature. I hope Minelab builds on this kind of imaging in the future. Absent that, the even the mighty CTX is hard pressed to do much of anything it's sparky little brother can't.
  13. Why Dig Nickels?

    I agree with you. I often start out on a site cherry picking silver. I crank up discrimination and Max out sensitivity etc. Then I'll go back when I'm in the mood to try to sort out nickels and gold on my V3i. Cherry picking silver is a very quick and low trash process that ensures I'll walk away with something. But in the end, if I only hunt silver I could just use any lower cost powerful machine. All those bells and whistles would be wasted. Machines aren't good at sorting trash, but I've seen the people behind the machines get good at it using those bells and whistles like polar plot, spectragraph, Fe:Co numbers, variable notching and variable tone break etc.
  14. Call me crazy, but I really like the grip and pinpoint trigger on those Ground EFX machines. A couple of times I thought about scooping a MX300-400 up to play around with and see if I could integrate it with another Whites machine. Next to that I like the pistol grip on an S rod, but some machines have a nice S rod grip by themselves like the Deus and MX Sport.
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