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Hello all, I'm new to this and almost never do a lot of online forums.

I currently have an old Goldmaster V-Sat and a MXT. Even with these I have very little experience actually using these.

We have recently retired and now really wish to start detecting (and especially gold).

I am at the point to of investing in some newer units, (specifically the Minelab Equinox 800 and the Gold Monster 1000).

First, I would like to know if anyone thinks it is worth trying to compare the older units I have with the newer ones that I am considering to purchase.

Second, if I do decide to buy the new ones, would I be better off buying 2 Equinox 800's or one Equinox 800 and one Gold Monster.

My wife and I want to find gold but we also want to have at least one detector that can search for multiple targets (i.e. coins & jewelry, relics, beaches, etc.

I look forward to hearing from you all, and hope I can find some goodies worth sharing pictures of with you.

Best Regards,


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Walt, to be honest about it, for nuggetshooting with VLF machines, in terms of depth for all size nuggets, and senstivity on sub-grain nuggets, there has not been significant improvement since the MXT and Goldmaster V-Sat. Where modern machines show improvement is in terms of features and ease of operation. For example, a properly tuned Equinox 800 can detect 0.25 grainers, but so can an MXT. At pretty much the same depth. Both the Goldmaster V-Sat and Gold Monster 1000 can sense 0.01 grainers. But, again, newer features make tuning, and operation easier/better. As for choosing between 2 800's or one 800 and one 1000, for your needs mentioned above, I would opt for 2 800's. Hope this helps. HH Jim

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I started off in the late '70s with Whites detectors and they would be as good as any modern detector for finding coins and rings. I even found very deep gold nuggets with a Whites 6DB, but the nuggets were plentiful in those days. I would still have that machine but it died on me. 

I didn't really start finding nuggets in mineralized ground until I got a PI machine. Then I found hundreds. 

I had a GoldBug 2 which was brilliant for small stuff on or close to the surface. Because it was high frequency it had no depth as such. I sold it as I got sick of digging tiny stuff and a mate wanted it. 

It sounds like you are primarily a coin hunter so as Jim suggests, go with the 800, You can find a lot of gold (rings, bracelets, chains etc)  on the beaches too. Probably easier to find gold there than in the hills. 

Good luck to you and your wife Walt. Have fun. 



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The following are relevant posts you should read regarding gold detecting with a vlf from an expert gold detectorist who also enjoys just about every other aspect of the detecting hobby as well and knows the equipment he sells inside and out:

I think Steve Herschbach who runs this site would echo these sentiments. 

In short - the answer to your question is "2 Equinox 800's".

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Hello and welcome Walt,

   I'm not in an area to nugget hunt; Florida! But I have both the MXT and the Equinox, as well as a few others! 

    Bottom line! Both good detectors! But Equinox is light! Waterproof(ish)! Its multi- Frequency! Turn on and go via preset programs! Or almost infinitely adjustable if you want to customize the settings in multi, or turn to a single frequency! And the service and warranty are great! Online detector updates also!

   Not to say it's perfect! No detector is! Some POD's have had leaking issues! Broken coil tab's have plagued their coils! But Coiltek just came out this month with three new sizes! And it is one of the most versatile vlf detectors on the market today! 

    There are others in lower price ranges that also have some mult- frequencies! But not as many as the Equinox! And your ability to customize settings is very limited! Much depends on what and where you detect, and what your budget is! Especially if buying two units!

    I don't have near the experience as those above! But that's my two cents!

   Glad your here! And I hope you and your wife have great luck detecting again!👍👍




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Welcome to the forum Walt.

I am new to detecting as I inherited my grandfathers detectors, but will tell you that I am finding some very nice items with them.

The one I use the most is the 800 and I have only been able to log about 40 hours on it so far, but have enjoyed it greatly.

For this newbie I have found that the factory setting have worked very good for me, and until I am more used to what it is telling me I will remain with those settings.

Good luck on your decision that you need to make, and happy hunting.

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I would put location is well above detector model (80%), then experience with the chosen detector (10%) and finally the brand of detector in your price range. Remember that if you get hooked by the gold bug, you can always up grade to a high price detector, that can be covered with your finds. I have not used an Nox 800 but after picking one up with dealer I know and having a swing of it all I can say is at the end of 10 hour days I would not know how many time my gold yield would have gone up, way back in the 1980 till the PI came out. 

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19 hours ago, Walt Easley said:

We have recently retired and now really wish to start detecting....

When a young person swings a heavy, out-of-balance detector it's called 'macho'.  When an old(er) person swings one there are other (less complimentary) adjectives that are used.

I have an alternate suggestion to buying two Equinoxes.  Get one Equinox and an XP Deus.  They are both multi-purpose but still complement each other.  The Deus is widely hailed as the lightest weight full format metal detector ever made, particularly when used without the control unit (but even with the control unit mounted).  The XP ORX is its sister model and preferred(?) by gold detectorists but not quite as full featured for coins.  But both can be configured for success in either coin hunting or native gold detecting.  (Jeff McClendon here has written about the differences -- he has owned both and used both in these two situations, with success.  Steve Herschbach -- site admin -- is another source of reliable info on these and pretty much every detector ever made for gold prospecting/recovery.  Chase Goldman owns both Eqx and Deus for use in relic hunting.)  Besides weight (although Eqx is lightweight compared to MXT, for example), the Deus/ORX is acknowledged to be better at unmasking in trashy iron environments.

Clearly from a diversity standpoint, one of each is preferable.  I guess the argument for two Equinoxes is that it would be easier for you and your wife to 'compare notes' when you are both using the same device.

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14 hours ago, GB_Amateur said:

Clearly from a diversity standpoint, one of each is preferable.  I guess the argument for two Equinoxes is that it would be easier for you and your wife to 'compare notes' when you are both using the same device.

I like the two of the same, that way if your breaks you can use hers without learning another machine. Remember to tell hers, that her detector is better than yours and go deeper. That way you can save face when she get more targets (gold) than you. 😁 

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