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Steve Herschbach

X-Terra 70 & X-Terra 705 As Nugget Detectors?

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Since we have a wide range of experienced people from all over the world here, I was curious about after the fact thoughts about a relatively old detector - the Minelab X-Terra 70 or newer X-Terra 705.

In my experience the coin discrimination modes on the X-Terra 705 rated as “very good” whereas the threshold based all metal prospecting mode is “top notch”. It was interesting to watch at Ganes Creek, Alaska the shift in the latter years. For a long time it was White’s MXT ruled supreme.

In the last few years though the X-Terra models came on strong. The main reasons cited were:

1. Light weight 2.9 lb design

2. Superb ferrous discrimination

3. The ability to compensate for interference from nearby detectors (an MXT Achilles Heel)

The main reason I bring this up is the recent price decrease to $499 (from $699) made me replace the Fisher Gold Bug Pro ($649) on my short list of Steve’s Picks as a recommended entry level “do it all” detector also suitable for finding gold nuggets. The X-Terra 705 is far more than just a nugget detector, with all the features of detectors that literally cost nearly twice as much. The X-Terra series is rather unique in that you can change the detector frequency by using different specially tuned coils (3 kHz, 7.5 kHz, and 18.75 kHz)

It is the nugget prospecting part I am most curious about, having never really employed the X-Terra as a prospecting detector myself outside of field testing. Does it work at all for gold in Australia or does the mineralization slay it? Any other commentary from people in Oz, the U.S. and elsewhere - likes, dislikes - all welcome. What is it best at and where does it fail? I will link to this as a feedback thread later, assuming you all have some responses. Thanks!

Here is an old video of a Kevin Hoagland with the X-Terra 70. The 705 is identical as regards the Prospecting Mode so this is a good introduction for those unfamiliar with the machine.

 

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The 705 was very popular in oz for its all round ability for those who wanted to do a bit of weekend detecting for nuggets and it has found some nice pieces here , ground  tracking was as good as you could  get for  vlf  and it was a great coin and beach detector so it dominated the part timer market here when a lot of people couldn't afford the runaway prices of the Minelab PI machines, its mid frequencies meant it wasn't overly sensitive on the small gold. But it's light weight , good battery life and choice of coils ( frequencies ) made it a winner here . I know of some nice size nuggets found with the 705  allthough most where near the surface and could have been found with any detector.The 705 was clearly a detector made to appeal to the masses and succeeded . I think the equinox is aimed at the same demographic with ( chirp ) technology so it will be interesting to see how that all pans out.  

  PM🇦🇺

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I used the x70 and found some very small bits of gold with it. This was in the dale district where iron-stone rules....I just could not get into the tiny gold/small coil thing...

I found it to be a versatile and fun toy!

fred 

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I started with the 705 and did not like it at all.  I had a lot of difficulty on many types of ground in Arizona.  Much of the shallow ground I have gone over with the 705, I later found gold with the GPX 5000.  I definitely was not an expert on the 705 machine but I studied everything I could on it.  But take my opinion with a grain of salt. It was the first machine I ever used.   But it misses A LOT of shallow gold. 

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Yeah, a PI will normally make any VLF look bad in mineralized ground. The direct equivalent machines to an X-Terra 705 Gold (18.75 kHz) would be the 19 kHz Fisher Gold Bug 2, 18 khz Garrett AT Gold, 14 kHz Makro Racer, 19 kHz Nokta FORS Gold+, 17.5 kHz Tesoro Lobo, and 14 khz White's MXT.

fisher-gold-bug-garrett-at-tesoro-lobo-whites-mxt-minelab-xterra-705.jpg

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I've always used the MXT in prospecting new areas with lots of trash and potential for iron artifacts.  I've been trying the 705 in the same way but miss the vdi when in prospecting mode and when in the relic mode the 705 will give a beep at each side of a large target, like a horseshoe, while the mxt will overload or give a broad sound, which I like better.  In any case once I've found gold its off to the races with a GMT, gold bug 2, ML4500 or other dig it all gold detector.  So I don't know the answer to witch is better on gold, but both detectors are alot of fun.

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Except for a small hand full of people most of you don't know exactly who I am. On these forums I go by goldseeker4000 but my name is Reese Townes and I have been detecting for gold nuggets and coins since 1980. I write articles on gold detecting for ICMJ Prospecting & Mining Journal. I have an ebook out called "Last Chance The Prospectors Field Guide To Finding More Gold". I am currently writing my second book that is strictly on gold detecting. I have a new article in the mining journal that will be out in a few days for December's issue. I bought my 705 in 2009 as a detector to compliment my Gpx4000 to get the tiny gold that the 4000 misses. I sold my 4000 in 2012 and from the time I bought my 705 to the time I sold my 4000, I had only found one nugget with the 4000. I had found many with the 4000 before this period of time but just the one while owning the 705. I sold the 4000 because since buying the 705 all the nuggets I was finding were found with the 705. It is light weight extremely sensitive and is an over all very enjoyable detector to hunt with. A lot of people do not give this detector the respect and credit it is due. When I sold the 4000 I was forced to really get to know how to operate and find gold with the 705. This detector is capable of finding gold as small as the monster and goldbug 2 but will find it deeper than the goldbug 2. It is far more sensitive than most people think and as a result most people will hunt it a little hot but I have found the tiniest piece of gold with it on a sensitivity of 5 at a depth of 3 inches. There is a lot I have to say to all who want to learn the secrets the 705 is harboring.  I will add to this thread this weekend when I am able to do so with my laptop which is where all my photos are regarding nuggets I have found with the 705.  I will be doing some educational videos on detecting for gold nuggets in the spring and one of them will be on finding gold with the 705. So if any of you have questions about this unsung hero in the world of gold detecting , by all means present your questions regarding the 705.

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Excellent Reese, looking forward to your posts. Welcome to the forum!

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Hi there Reese. Yes, welcome to Steve' site. I have a 705 Gold Pack & I have never even used it :rolleyes:  I too look forward to what more you have to say on it. Many thanks & again....welcome aboard.

Good luck out there

JW :smile:

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