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RobNC

Should I Try To Drink The Koolaid Once More

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Ok.. I've encountered some really tough ground conditions in a lot of areas that I hunt regularly. We are talking the red dirt with little shiny particles all in it that also has iron mixed in.  My Teknetics T2 struggles in it. My ORX struggles but will fish things out if you can stand the machine gun blips. I keep reading that the Equinox is more suited to deal with this. Now, I tried an Equinox 600 and found it to also cut up on certain plots of land, and the particular one I had was really horrible in iron. The tones also played tricks on my ears and I found the bleepity bling like sounds to confuse my caveman brain. The ORX has been a decent detector for me, and helped me rehabilitate myself after a car accident this year. However the tones in it are so close together that my ears can not often discriminate high from mid tone. There is no way to adjust it.

Let's fast forward to today. The Equinox 600 does not have the adjustability of the 800 concerning tones, or at least that is my understanding. I walked away from my Equinox 600 ticked off that I could not seemingly bond with it. In my mind there was a single thought - how much better would the 800 be? For those of you that have especially used the XP ORX or the Teknetics T2 and also used an Equinox 800 I'm asking you, does the Equinox 800 do better in contaminated soil than my current 2? It is possible I will trade the XP ORX towards the EQ800. Would that be a "step-up" in capabilities? I've always found this forum and the people here honest and fair with no BS. So I ask you, would it be worth the extra money, hassle and such to truly give the Equinox 800 a chance even though I had a 600 and it didn't quite suit me. It is entirely possible the 600 I had may have had a fault of some type for all I know. And what of depth with the EQ800 vs the XP ORX?

Reaching out to everyone in the know.

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Since your main issue is with audio I don't know if anyone can really answer this for you. Everyone has strongly individualistic opinions on audio, to the point of two people strongly feeling just the opposite about two detectors. The 800 has no more depth than the 600 so you should already know what the performance is like. You can customize the audio more on the 800, but will that be enough to satisfy you? Honestly, I sure don't know.

The DEUS is perhaps more what you are looking for, since you seem to like the ORX, but the DEUS does offer more audio customization features.

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24 minutes ago, Steve Herschbach said:

Since your main issue is with audio I don't know if anyone can really answer this for you. Everyone has strongly individualistic opinions on audio, to the point of two people strongly feeling just the opposite about two detectors. The 800 has no more depth than the 600 so you should already know what the performance is like. You can customize the audio more on the 800, but will that be enough to satisfy you? Honestly, I sure don't know.

The DEUS is perhaps more what you are looking for, since you seem to like the ORX, but the DEUS does offer more audio customization features.

I appreciate your input sir. That is a question for sure, and will not know unless I try the 800. The biggest thing I've gathered so far and also been told in person is how the Equinox is better in our kind of soil (the horrible red clay monster soil) due to there being multiple frequencies at work. For sure the T2 is my favorite with its tones and the ID, but being truthful when I hit a spot of that red clay monster dirt it is really not much good against it and that is with smaller coil. The T2 is one heck of a slayer on coins though down to reasonable depths, granted the red monster clay is not a variable.  I like the ORX, and it may come down to me getting the 800 and keeping the ORX. Still trying to decide.

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I have tried my unit (800) in some red clay near me and I had to turn the sense down to about 15 and use 5 tones.

When I did this it worked rather well, I had done that about 2 months after I had purchased the unit and it blew me away.

Now that I am not near that area and back to my part of the country I have not been able to get back out after doing the upgrade.

Maybe I will have some time on Sunday to get out I hope.

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I have been running into severe iron issues to the point I am going to give my beach Pi unit a go at the areas I want to pick through but what I have done that seems to help using my ATP which gets masked easily by iron and have a pretty good degree of success is I gb the machine so it doesn't false. With the ATP I also drop the gb 5 clicks to run it a bit hotter to gain some depth. Lastly I set my iron discrim so I can just barely hear an iron nail. As many know, the Garretts don't have iron audio adjust and though the machine vid will show the variations, lack of iron audio adjust will obliterate any sense of something else in the pass. Getting the iron on the brink of a sound will give you a chirp of something else as iron can drag your signal down you will be just higher than the scratch. Lastly work a bit slower if you need depending on the frequency of iron targets. Your Orx or Nox 600 should be fine, they have a faster recovery speed which should help quite a bit.

Lower frequency will also get you more depth.

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Hopefully, Chase and TNSS will jump in here and offer their opinions on your question about will the Equinox do better in the red, iron rich rotten granite, gneiss and schist dirt that is tough to deal with in parts of the Southeast USA.

I have used the Equinox, ORX and T2+ in that kind of dirt in the western suburbs of Atlanta. Turning down the sensitivity, adding a little more discrimination and carefully ground balancing made the tiny iron particles less of a nuisance and made it possible for me to use all three. The T2+ (using the 11x7 stock coil) was the least stable but still could hit deeper targets (but with really jumpy numbers) than the ORX which basically reached its depth of detection at about 5 inches (using a 9" X35 coil) with any kind of accuracy on coin sized targets using Coin Fast. Coin Deep was a no-go for me. I didn't try the Gold Modes. The Equinox was the most stable of the three and also was able to easily hit 10" coin targets with good numbers, at least that was my experience.

I'm not clear on what your audio issues were or what audio settings you were using on your Equinox 600. If you use 1 tone, 2 tones or 50 tones the 600 and 800 can be setup very similar in otherwise default Park, Field and Beach modes. The big difference is in the 5 tone preset tone breaks when comparing the 600 to the much more adjustable 800. The unchangeable zinc penny split tone produced by the 600 in 5 tones due to the tone break at VDI 20 still drives me crazy since I'm a musician and listening to the diminished 5th interval on every zinc penny is really unpleasant to me.  I love to find big mens gold rings, so I usually dig every zinc penny!

If I'm using either a 600 or 800 in thick man-made iron I usually use 2 tones with an audible threshold and either turn the iron volume on tone 1 to minimum and/or discriminate out -9 to 0 and let the nulling threshold tell me where the iron is depending on if the machine gun iron is driving me crazy or not.

To me, the ORX and definitely the more adjustable Deus give lots more information through the actual sound of the audio responses about the indentity of the target compared to the T2 and the Equinox.

Jeff

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Thanks to everyone responding so far. As many have said before there is no perfect detector. Not expecting perfection by any means. Admittedly most of the problem is with me I believe. Many have talked about how long it takes to get good with the Equinox, and I probably spent less than 20 hrs total with the 600. That isn't quite a fair shake. There were other factors involved with it also- the first 6" coil I purchased for it was bad out of the box and Minelab replaced it. The shaft was a bit wobbly also. And the audio. I've used more detectors since then and had more time out in the field. Will that change things with another Equinox and me? Maybe so. Still thinking about it. I will say that I have a good price on it from Digger's Den. Brian is a really nice guy and took a lot of time with me yesterday on the phone. Whatever I do, whatever I decide to buy, it's going to come from him.

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Hard to provide advice on your audio perception issues tough ground on a forum, really need to be in the field with you to better understand what your issues are.  But I will say this, the Equinox compliments the Deus/Orx and vice versa.  They are really two completely different animals with their own strengths and weaknesses. 

Of the T2, ORX/Deus, and Equinox - I have owned and used all three and I would personally take the T2 out of the equation for the conditions you cite - a combination of high mineralization combined with iron.  That is tough for any detector and the Equinox is not necessarily going to fare any better than the Deus/ORX.  Regarding ORX vs. Deus.  The Deus does provide some additional tweaking ability when it comes to tones and other parameters but the ORX pretty much covers the bases for the situation at hand.  If I were using the ORX in the your conditons I would be using gold field mode and let the detector tell me everything under the coil audibly and look for the non-ferrous TID that is worth digging.  Using 3-tones/discrimination mode under those conditions is pretty frustrating.  If I was going to use a discrimination mode setup under those conditions I would use the Deus pitch mode with iron volume but I think Gold mode on the ORX with it's iron volume (which doesn't exist on the Deus) is just as effective though I do not have sufficient run time on the ORX to be sure.  Plan on doing some test runs with the ORX at a site this weekend.  Unfortunately, pitch audio is an acquired taste is like all metal mode in that it doesn't really give you an audible target ID, so you are somewhat dependent on the display (same for gold mode on the Equinox) but you really know when you are swinging over a conductive target.

As far as the Equinox is concerned, it really wouldn't necessarily do any BETTER than the ORX but it would be different.  By that I mean, you will find things with the ORX in those conditions you won't with the Equinox and vice versa because they will communicate with you differently about what they are seeing in the ground.  The advantage of Multi IQ is that you might have get slightly more non-ferrous target ID depth with the Equinox whereas the Deus will hear the target perhaps deeper but without a definitive visual target ID.   Furthermore, the Equinox 800 provides a few more advantages than the 600 in these conditions.  Beside the wider range of settings with respect to iron bias and recovery speed, the higher single frequency options, and the non-ferrous tone customization options, one additional not-so-secret weapon that Equinox has in tough dirt/thick iron is Gold Mode.  I use that a lot and it sort of emulates the ORX/Deus pitch tone or gold field mode pitch audio, but not quite as good.  I like having the Equinox user profile button available so that I can quickly switch between modes (e.g., Field 2 and Gold mode) to interrogate iffy signals.  So that is an advantage of Equinox.  I could go on, but not sure I am really helping because I don't fully understand your issues.  But as far as kool aid is concerned, Deus/ORX and Equinox just have different flavors and variety is the spice of life.  How's that for worthless platitudes.  Good luck Rob.

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Is the top soil that loaded with iron or is it just in the clay? Only times I found anything in the clay up here in the northeast is if there was a building or foundation where the ground was disturbed. Other than that general hunting even in farm fields everything sits in the top soil. There was a post about worms and how they cause coins to sink. To me this explains why some the very old coins I find in the pine forests are very shallow, even a merc on the surface and in an adjacent fertile farm field stuff is much deeper. Think that post was in the Simons thread silver spill.

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I hate to comment much anymore about this versus that as my answer is always the same these days. I have probably hunted more bad ground than most people with VLF detectors and there is no ground in which the Equinox is not going to be my choice. That includes anything I have found in the western U.S., with the nastiest being the magnetite laden serpentine bedrock areas of the northern Sierras. I have not bothered with the ORX because XP coils are the detector, and I have already run the XP elliptical HF coil on the DEUS. Switching the controller will not change anything significantly so while I find the ORX tempting just to play with from a practical perspective it would not see much use. Personally I prefer the 48 kHz Goldmaster 24K for the type of detecting that might call for XP HF coil, but that has more to do with coil and battery options more than anything, as I really like the XP Goldfield mode. The bottom line though is between Multi-IQ and the single frequency options plus the Modes and settings I can make the Equinox sing and dance in any ground as well as I can expect from any VLF. I keep a Goldmaster 24K still just to have access to a set of closed coils plus a concentric coil option but I generally still want to grab the Equinox first. If it can’t handle it, I’m pulling out a PI/GPZ type detector.

Whatever an Equinox can’t handle some other VLF is not going to make enough difference to matter in my opinion. Due to that I don’t comment much as it just seems like I am biased towards one detector and at this point that is probably true. I am to where switching horses on VLF detectors just wastes my time. There is benefit to settling on one unit and learning it so well it talks to you and I’ve made that choice. The only world where I perk up much now is at news of something new in the PI/GPZ world.

I can’t see myself ever getting another machine that does not offer true multifrequency operation. I suspect therefore  the only detector that will end up replacing my Equinox will be made by Minelab but I am interested in seeing what Nokta/Makro has to offer for multifrequency. Is anyone else even in the game?

minelab-multi-iq-simultaneous-multi-frequency-technology-logo.jpg

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