As I looked on the website of my french md-dealer I saw an adapter to fold the grip/pod of the EQX into the armcuff. Not for me, but maybe something of interest to some of you who like to take your EQX travelling in a small case...
FYI: Here's the link: http://www.shop-lefouilleur.com/v2/fr/nouveautes/842-bascule-poignee-equinox-7861560031186.html
€ 39 = us$ 43,80
There is a thread on "other sites' asking about recovery speed and depth? With SALT WATER. The only question was do you loose depth, in a higher recovery? I would say with the NOX at 6 there is a balance with quiet running and depth in salt water.[esp with black sand] With a machine like the Sovereign in all metal Pinpoint mode it is doubtful you can overswing or swing this too fast on ANY salt beach. Yesterdays take with the sovereign in all metal pinpoint [for those who never had a 186 coin day]. [347 pesos]
By Gerry in Idaho
I hunted a 20' x 30' site 5 years ago using CTX-3030 with small 6" coil and pulled 2 Barber Quarters, 1 Seated Liberty Quarter, and 2 Barber Dimes.
I hunted the exact same 20x30 spot 2 days ago with EQ-800 and stock coil, as Lunk had my 6 sniffer. Here is what the $2500 CTX-3030 missed.
1903 V Nickel, 1883 Indian Head Cent, 1897 Barber Dime and 2 early Wheat Cents I didn't take pics.
The only thing I can contribute is the Multi IQ Technology and faster recovery of Equinox is superior for this type of site, high iron trash content.
By Mark Gillespie
This might not seem like much but this small school (built in the late 30’s) has been hunted for over 10 years. With machines like the:
Garrett AT Pro
White’s DFX, V3i
Fisher F75 and LTD
Minelab Etrac, and CTX 3030
And now the Equinox 800
Countless hours hunting from three guys including myself. Now I will say we’ve found some nice stuff from this site over the past 10 years and we all thought it was cleaned out but surprise, it’s not, yea I know they never are. But I was not expecting this many nickels and some over 6” deep. Then the silver nickel at maybe 5” and tilted to maybe a 45 degree angle.
I will say this machine has a very good audio response but one has to listen and learn. I did the usual noise cancel and started off with park 1. I wasn’t really happy so I tried each of the park/field programs and ended back with park 1 with one change, I set the iron bias to 0. It didn’t take long and I knew this was the settings for the day. Numerous times I tried park 2 and the two field programs but it seemed like park 1 was the very best at both a good audio and stable ID on located buried targets. After a while I started wondering why these targets had been missed. Taking my time, I stared rotating around each target and I was quite amazed at how stable the audio/ID was. These were absolutely dig, dig signals, no doubts about it, with the exception of the silver nickel. If the silver had not given a double beep I might have walked away but I’m glad I didn’t. Well, toward the end of the hunt I purposely moved to the trashy area of the school and wow this machine, even with the 11” coil separates very well. I might add, the old Minelab wiggle I used with the Etac and explorer works with the Equinox too. Found a somewhat nice signal that I thought might be a nickel. Did the wiggle and marked the spot. Called my buddy over to check the spot. He gave no indication it could be a good target but at 5” comes another nickel (gave a solid ID of 13) and surrounded by heavy trash. Well, we had to leave and to be honest I felt sorry for him because he had not dug anything but trash. Now I’m beginning to wonder if I should buy the 6” coil and hit the trash again.
Extremely satisfied user
By Andy Sabisch
Wanted to see who was using the Equinox for prospecting and if you are, woudl you be willing to share settings and some find photos for the new Equinox Handbook that is getting ready to ship to the printer . . . will send a copy of the book when they come in if we can use them in the book.
Send prospecting find photos or settings to email@example.com
Thanks in advance,,
By Steve Herschbach
These tips are based on my personal use of the Minelab Equinox 800 at a few locations in Nevada and California. That means you have to take this with a grain of salt for other locations as far as exact settings but the basic process is the same. I will probably update this in the future as I learn more, including hopefully any observations and tips people may provide on this thread.
The Gold Mode is only available on the Equinox 800 and features a VCO boosted audio that is quite different than the other Equinox modes. It is very powerful, especially in Multi frequency, and will detect very tiny pieces of gold. The downside is that in highly mineralized ground you will encounter hot rocks and even the ground itself that wants to react and create signals. The basic secret of nugget detecting with a VLF detector is in tuning the detector for the best performance possible, while accepting that air test type results are not possible in bad ground. A balance must be obtained between sheer power (sensitivity) and the false signals generated in difficult ground.
The key default settings for Gold Mode 1 are:
Ground Balance: Tracking
Recovery Speed: 6
Iron Bias: 6
Accept/Reject: -9 through 0 rejected, 1 through 40 accepted
When I hit new ground when nugget detecting I want my detector to be running with manual adjustments. Initially knowing how the ground responds is very important and I want to make any settings that affect anything myself. Therefore, the first thing I do is turn off the ground tracking and use the Auto (pump coil over ground) method of ground balancing instead. Ground tracking can also track out faint nugget signals, so my preference is to run with it off if possible.
Frankly, I have not experimented with Iron Bias much. In theory at least reducing this setting will reduce the possibility of tiny gold being misidentified as ferrous. Since I am mistrustful of filters I have been running the Iron Bias at 0. Starting out however people may want to leave it alone since adjusting too many things at once may not be productive for beginners.
Recovery Speed is highly misunderstood. People latch onto one out of context statement "lower recovery speed equals more depth" and too many people therefore are immediately going to lower settings. Higher recovery speeds allow the detector to better separate trash targets from good and minimises any masking effects. "Masking" is where bad targets overwhelm and hide good targets. Mineralized "hot rocks" are really nothing more than a large target that can mask (hide) nuggets not just under but next to them. Reducing the recovery speed will often add no depth due to ground conditions, and mask nuggets next to hot rocks. Higher recovery speeds will reveal those nuggets, and so you are often getting more "relative depth" with higher recovery speed settings. I basically stick with the default setting of 6 and will not go lower unless the ground is relatively low mineral and free of hot rocks. Most importantly, in some ground you will find that the coil will tend to give false signals when bumped. This is directly affected by Recovery Speed. Going to lower recovery speeds will generate more false signals due to bumping on rocks.
With all that said however, reducing the Recovery Speed can add extra sensitivity to very deep or very small targets. A setting of 4 is easily manageable in low mineral ground and can work for the Equinox in higher mineral ground with a skilled operator. It is possible to go even lower though the detector will typically become less stable at the slower recovery speed settings.
Sensitivity is one of those “set it as high as you can without making the detector too unstable” type settings. My settings normally range from 18 to 25 but could go lower in bad ground.
Now, the extremely important Accept/Reject settings. Weak gold signals in highly mineralized ground will definitely run into the ferrous range. Starting out, I am going to toggle the Horseshoe button to remove all rejected settings so that the detector reacts to everything.
My starting point for Gold Mode 1:
Ground Balance: Auto (pump method)
Recovery Speed: 6
Iron Bias: 0
Accept/Reject: -9 through 40 accepted
The first thing I want to do is see how the ground responds with these settings. Find a place hopefully free of trash, and run the coil over the ground and observe what happens.
In most gold locations you should see lots of target responses at -9 and -8 plus possibly -7. These are ground responses and are giving you direct feedback on your settings. The first thing I want to try and do is reduce those ground responses as much as possible by employing a mix of ground balance, sensitivity, and recovery speed. Simply ground balancing should cause those signals to alleviate somewhat. You will want to note hot rock readings especially. The ground will balance out (ground noise reduce) at one ground balance setting, but it may make some hot rocks worse. Sometimes you can manually tweak the ground balance to also reduce the hot rock response while not really making the ground itself worse by trying intermediate settings. You can only do this when not in tracking since tracking decides for you where the settings will be. I always will stay in manual until forced to use tracking for this reason alone.
Reducing sensitivity is also a good thing to do in many cases, yet people are very resistant to doing so for fear of losing depth. The thing is, unless you can get the detector to settle down and run relatively smoothly you will struggle with hot rocks and false signals. Reducing sensitivity will reduce hot rock signals faster than it will reduce metal signals in most cases, so back it down as needed to get stable performance.
If the ground is mild enough you should be able to find settings that reduce or eliminate the readings in the -9, -8, and -7 ground range, plus hopefully alleviating any hot rocks that are present. However, in very bad ground you may still have a lot of signals in that region. If so, try a couple things. First, go ahead and try out the tracking. Tracking has an advantage in that it will typically tune out a hot rock in a single swing or two, while being extremely resistant to tuning out metal objects. If you can get smoother performance over the ground than with any reasonable manual settings, it may be the way to go.
In the worst ground and hot rocks the magic ability to switch frequencies can be a serious aid. I have found that Multi is very powerful... more powerful than any single frequency. That does mean that by simply going to 20 khz a lot of ground and hot rocks that are noisy in Multi settle down and become manageable.
One of these options may allow you to go detecting without rejecting any target id numbers. That would be ideal. However, do not be surprised if residual signals remain in the -9, -8, and -7 region. If they are still too prevalent, then hit the Horseshoe button again to engage the Accept/Reject function, but go in and open up everything except the offending signals. That for me commonly means blocking -9, -8, and -7 but accepting -6 and higher. Or maybe you need to block -6 also. You have to listen to what the detector is telling you and adjust accordingly.
If you do end up blocking out some low negative numbers you may find you can also bump the sensitivity back up a point or two as long as everything stays quiet.
Again, the goal is to try and shut down ground and hot rock responses to the greatest degree possible while retaining as much detecting power as possible. It's a balancing act.
Tiny nuggets will often read as solid hits at target id 1 and 2. The larger the gold, the higher the target id reading. Gold can appear anywhere on the meter all the way up into the 30's if the nugget is large enough. I have not had it happen yet but be very suspicious of 0 and -1 readings as also being possible gold readings.*
This is just an example of where I end up at on my ground a lot so far:
Gold Mode 1
Ground Balance: Auto (Ground pump method)
Sensitivity: 18 - 23
Recovery Speed: 4 - 6
Iron Bias: 0
Accept/Reject: -9 through -7 rejected, -6 through 40 accepted
Note: the following works as well on both Equinox 600 and Equinox 800. Since Gold Mode lacks target tones, going to Field 2 and using the solutions above plus the additional possibility of tones is another alternative. Instead of using Gold Mode and blocking the lowest target id numbers they can be left open to signal as ferrous or mixed ferrous targets. And you now have 5, 10, and 15 kHz options that Gold Mode lacks. Be very careful because the default rejection pattern for Field 2 rejects target id 1 and 2. This will reject most small gold nugget readings and reduce signal strength on larger gold by blocking part of the signal. Field 2 set up properly is quite close to Gold Mode performance and a perfectly acceptable nugget detecting alternative.
Field Mode 2
Ground Balance: Auto (Ground pump method)
Sensitivity: 18 - 23
Recovery Speed: 4 - 6 (default is 7)
Iron Bias: 0
Accept/Reject: Everything accepted, rely on tones (alternative reject -9, -8, and -7 if too much ground feedback)
In closing, I want to say that gold nugget detecting demands far more expertise from the operator than most detecting. People who rely on canned settings provided by others will never be expert unless they really understand what the settings are doing. It is imperative that you be able to observe ground responses as I have noted above, and know how to best alleviate them while losing as little depth on gold as possible. It is a very fine balancing point done correctly and can only be done properly by a person who genuinely understands how the detector operates. The only way I know to become proficient is lots of experimenting in the field with different settings on test targets and hot rocks. The settings above are less important than the methodology, and if you want to truly become a proficient nugget hunter you do need to work at it.
I hope that helps somebody out - best of luck to you!
Updated Nugget Detecting Tips 9/2018
*This article recommends keeping as many negative numbers set to accept as is possible. It has been confirmed that as I suspected that nuggets range well into the negative numbers.
First gold nuggets found with Minelab Equinox from Jonathan Porter report...