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auminesweeper

My White's 5900 Di Pro

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Steve, It is funny you say about a BFO machine late last year I bought an old Whites 5900 Di Pro Plus that had never been used, the owner had bought it and put it in his loft and then bought a waterproof detector so this one got forgotten about, anyways I bought it and I put batteries in it and fired it up and It has brutal power and it has a threshold that is even better than the TDI SL,

I tested it and you can ground balance highly magnetic ground and if it still makes the threshold waver slightly you can adjust the Disc and knock it out all together, When it comes to power what modern machines do with a 15" it can exceed them using the standard "old" 950 coil,  and it has no problem discing out large Iron, and it has  stacked two stage GB control knobs,

I since found out that these thing have almost a cult following in the US, I phone Whites in Inverness and they told me it was made in July 1989

John.

 

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19 hours ago, auminesweeper said:

...Late last year I bought an old Whites 5900 Di Pro Plus that had never been used....

Quite a find!  (Bet you got a good deal, too, but are too modest to brag.)

Interestingly, last week I was on vacation in Colorardo (hunted 6 days out of 6!) and went to two club events (monthly meeting and annual members-only competition coin hunt).  Since I have very few face-to-face interactions with people who know what they are doing with metal detectors I took the opportunity to ask as many questions as I could squeeze in when I was around these detectorists.  One in particular, who has been swinging an F75 black a lot over the last several years (I could tell this by all the tape on it -- probably an extra pound :biggrin:), took me under his wing and fed my ravenous info appetite for over 45 minutes.  In passing he said something I've read here from many of you -- that there were IB/VLF detectors back in the 90's which are just as powerful (i.e. deep) as the best today.  When I asked him for examples he said the White's 5900 and 6000.

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To be honest about it, many years ago I was on one of the forums and someone posted a picture of an old Bounty Hunter Red Baron and it was taken back when they were new and I was in awe of it and it stuck in my mind because it was the all singing dancing model and from that day on I searched every where and then last year I saw this one on ebay and because it was a Whites I just had to have it, Anyways I was determined that I was going to win the bidding it got up to about £120  /$156.00 USD so right at the last couple of seconds I bid about £260.00  /$338.00 and I actually won the bidding and got it for £170.00 /$221.00USD.

It was around mid winter when it got here and I was not going to go out testing it in -10* degrees and so it was down to indoor testing and the US Quarter seems to be the standard so everyone would understand what I was talking about So I fired up every machine I have here and used them in mixed mode audio (Third Tone) with the quarter as my test piece it turns out that the 5900 using the standard 950 coil has in excess of 37%+ more horsepower than some of the best modern machines at the bare minimum when other machines are also fitted their factory coils, So what modern machines can see at 15 to 17" the 5900 can see at 22" + and the bigger the target the bigger the difference,

I believe that where some of the horsepower comes from is part of the reason of Minelabs success at prospecting with using that Velvet type threshold, because the 5900 does not chatter or waver when maxed out and it has the best ever threshold,  The 5900 has the edge over the 6000 because the 5900 was the last in the series to have manual GB, and at the time of purchase I did not realize that I was actually buying the better model so that was more luck than judgement,

Keith Southern plays with these quite a lot and he has adapted them to use a straight shaft which makes them more like what we are use to, I was going to post a link to it but photo bucket has removed all the photos and you have join or do something to see them,

I took the 5900 out side for some proper testing and I found all the targets my PI machines could find even through the heavy clay layer that is usable enough to make clay pots if needed, It's discrimination works pretty well and it is very accurate in the above soil conditions and in Air tests it ID's all targets perfectly, Below my apartment there is a huge subway tunnel that is about 5 or 6 feet deep and like the PI's it has no problem seeing it due to its size,

Weight wise people keep saying the 5900s are wrist breakers, But the thing is it is a Porker weighing in at 6.3 lbs but the way it is set up it naturally sits at a 30* angle so no matter what you do the coil is always hovering about 2 inches above the ground so the weight is very easy on the arm etc, The 5900 can easily be adapted to a belt or chest mount because if you look at the picture where it is in the box you could make a belt mount out of pipe and mount the coil on a modern shaft because the coil lead is over 8 feet long without destroying the originality of the machine,

I phone Whites and they gave me all the info about this machine and I asked them why was it so powerful compared to what we have today and he told me that when we changed over from analog where components were use to make things happen that something got lost in translation when converted to digital, So this is why modern machines can't keep pace with machines that we had in the late 1980s and with the birth of the digital age detector companies have basically had to start all over again, Target ID and recovery speed is very useful but speed does not go hand in hand with depth, just ask any CTX or GPX user about that. and It has a lockable pinpoint non motion mode just like Whites added to the MXT Pro and All Pro which is useful for tracing Items under ground. 

As old as this old timer is, It is living proof of what Steve was saying on another thread about BFO/TR machines, Are they any better ? I don't know but it does make me smile when people start talking about deep machines and bragging rights,

My final thoughts having compared such a classic machine to the modern greats is that I wish Whites would use the exact threshold and fit it to modern machines because being able to pick out the faintest of wavers or signals from that threshold is the secrete to such depth and making modern machines chatty where we have to reduce the gain in order to get them to run smooth is an instant depth loss baring in mind when modern machines are maxed out and these old machines are maxed out the older ones already have that 37%+ depth advantage so when you turn down the modern machines so they are stable it makes you think and ask just how much depth are we loosing , and the Ground Balance system with the aid of the Disc to wipe out ground noise is another thing we have lost too,  Our modern machines can do a heck of a lot too and they really deliver but modern machine reached their peak years ago but if a company could put back what we have lost from the old machines then we would see what a VLF can really do,

hope this helps.

John.

 

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John,stunning machine and just proves that some of the older machines can keep up with modern day detectors and even exceed them,always wanted a 6000 but never really found a decent example,but if one did come along then a i could well be very tempted.

 

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15 hours ago, auminesweeper said:

Weight wise people keep saying the 5900s are wrist breakers, But the thing is it is a Porker weighing in at 6.3 lbs but the way it is set up it naturally sits at a 30* angle so no matter what you do the coil is always hovering about 2 inches above the ground so the weight is very easy on the arm etc, The 5900 can easily be adapted to a belt or chest mount because if you look at the picture where it is in the box you could make a belt mount out of pipe and mount the coil on a modern shaft because the coil lead is over 8 feet long without destroying the originality of the machine

I speculate if it would be possible for a 'garage mechanic' to retrofit one of these into a modern case/housing, similar to what Steve did with a Garrett ATX.  Yeh, the circuit board is still moderately heavy compared to today's, but that steel housing and, I'm guessing, handle and shaft getting replaced could make a significant difference.  I'm assuming the coil isn't much heavier than the modern White's 950s, but maybe I'm wrong there.

15 hours ago, auminesweeper said:

I phone Whites and they gave me all the info about this machine and I asked them why was it so powerful compared to what we have today and he told me that when we changed over from analog where components were use to make things happen that something got lost in translation when converted to digital.

Hmmm.  Makes me wonder if there isn't some headroom, still, for the modern IB/VLF.  Hopefully I'm not insulting the entire field of engineers with this next statement, but I've noticed over the years that some designers/etc. are more interested in using the latest, coolest devices and tools and not caring as much about performance, at least in terms of depth.  (For sure other performance characteristics such as TID have improved.)  This happens often in the software world.  E.g. the C-language and its offspring, C++, outperform most of the modern high-level languages, and it's not close.  The rationale is "processors are so much faster now we don't need execution efficiency like we used to...."  Sound familiar?  It's unfortunate more engineers aren't end-users as well.  Now I better duck while Carl and sidekicks reply with guns blazing....  :unsure:

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The Coil is a bit lighter than the modern X-Type 950/9.5.

This coil weighs 18.931oz or 536.7 grams and the new version for the MXT V3i etc weighs 20.61oz or 593.00 grams which does not sound like much but you can feel the difference, So the new one is 1 and 3/4 ounces heavier.

John.

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I find it interesting that the meter is black/grey. I have the same machine and seen others all have the blue background with yellow numbers/letters.  That is so great that you found one brand new. I love mine. The four filter design blows away all my other machines except my Fisher CZ 6a. The 5900 ignores iron better though, the CZ6a gets fooled on deep nails.

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On 9/15/2017 at 7:37 PM, auminesweeper said:

To be honest about it, many years ago I was on one of the forums and someone posted a picture of an old Bounty Hunter Red Baron and it was taken back when they were new and I was in awe of it and it stuck in my mind because it was the all singing dancing model and from that day on I searched every where and then last year I saw this one on ebay and because it was a Whites I just had to have it, Anyways I was determined that I was going to win the bidding it got up to about £120  /$156.00 USD so right at the last couple of seconds I bid about £260.00  /$338.00 and I actually won the bidding and got it for £170.00 /$221.00USD.

It was around mid winter when it got here and I was not going to go out testing it in -10* degrees and so it was down to indoor testing and the US Quarter seems to be the standard so everyone would understand what I was talking about So I fired up every machine I have here and used them in mixed mode audio (Third Tone) with the quarter as my test piece it turns out that the 5900 using the standard 950 coil has in excess of 37%+ more horsepower than some of the best modern machines at the bare minimum when other machines are also fitted their factory coils, So what modern machines can see at 15 to 17" the 5900 can see at 22" + and the bigger the target the bigger the difference,

I believe that where some of the horsepower comes from is part of the reason of Minelabs success at prospecting with using that Velvet type threshold, because the 5900 does not chatter or waver when maxed out and it has the best ever threshold,  The 5900 has the edge over the 6000 because the 5900 was the last in the series to have manual GB, and at the time of purchase I did not realize that I was actually buying the better model so that was more luck than judgement,

Keith Southern plays with these quite a lot and he has adapted them to use a straight shaft which makes them more like what we are use to, I was going to post a link to it but photo bucket has removed all the photos and you have join or do something to see them,

I took the 5900 out side for some proper testing and I found all the targets my PI machines could find even through the heavy clay layer that is usable enough to make clay pots if needed, It's discrimination works pretty well and it is very accurate in the above soil conditions and in Air tests it ID's all targets perfectly, Below my apartment there is a huge subway tunnel that is about 5 or 6 feet deep and like the PI's it has no problem seeing it due to its size,

Weight wise people keep saying the 5900s are wrist breakers, But the thing is it is a Porker weighing in at 6.3 lbs but the way it is set up it naturally sits at a 30* angle so no matter what you do the coil is always hovering about 2 inches above the ground so the weight is very easy on the arm etc, The 5900 can easily be adapted to a belt or chest mount because if you look at the picture where it is in the box you could make a belt mount out of pipe and mount the coil on a modern shaft because the coil lead is over 8 feet long without destroying the originality of the machine,

I phone Whites and they gave me all the info about this machine and I asked them why was it so powerful compared to what we have today and he told me that when we changed over from analog where components were use to make things happen that something got lost in translation when converted to digital, So this is why modern machines can't keep pace with machines that we had in the late 1980s and with the birth of the digital age detector companies have basically had to start all over again, Target ID and recovery speed is very useful but speed does not go hand in hand with depth, just ask any CTX or GPX user about that. and It has a lockable pinpoint non motion mode just like Whites added to the MXT Pro and All Pro which is useful for tracing Items under ground. 

As old as this old timer is, It is living proof of what Steve was saying on another thread about BFO/TR machines, Are they any better ? I don't know but it does make me smile when people start talking about deep machines and bragging rights,

My final thoughts having compared such a classic machine to the modern greats is that I wish Whites would use the exact threshold and fit it to modern machines because being able to pick out the faintest of wavers or signals from that threshold is the secrete to such depth and making modern machines chatty where we have to reduce the gain in order to get them to run smooth is an instant depth loss baring in mind when modern machines are maxed out and these old machines are maxed out the older ones already have that 37%+ depth advantage so when you turn down the modern machines so they are stable it makes you think and ask just how much depth are we loosing , and the Ground Balance system with the aid of the Disc to wipe out ground noise is another thing we have lost too,  Our modern machines can do a heck of a lot too and they really deliver but modern machine reached their peak years ago but if a company could put back what we have lost from the old machines then we would see what a VLF can really do,

hope this helps.

John.

Here is a pic of the 5900 Di Pro Plus  mod that Keith Southern sold me last year.

The rod makes the machine swing a lot easier. The Minelab arm-cuff is gel padded, but lacks a strap. The rubber grips he installed help a lot to tame thisbeast LOL. I am in awe of this machine. I just got a 6000 Di Pro SL with a hip mountat a steal of a price - 150.00 .... ah, detecting heaven :)

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