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Steve Herschbach

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Everything posted by Steve Herschbach

  1. Depends on what you mean by advantage, as in, is there something special about digital per se? Not particularly. The main advantage is that you can stuff way more functionality in a light package. Hard wired analog circuits are heavy and expensive. It's impossible to get really versatile with analog as far as all the options one can do with digital, where you are changing a program, not an entire hardwired circuit. It's kind of like asking is a digital phone any better than an old rotary phone. If all you are doing is making a phone call, not really. But how many of us still use rotary phones? Some people talk about how the audio is better in old analog machines, or whatever. You can certainly use them and go find stuff, and so more power to anyone who loves and wants to stay with their old analog detector. For me, I have gone down the nostalgia road a few times, but going back to an older model has always disappointed. They were good when I had them, but they are not as good as what I have now. I finally learned my lesson there, and no more looking back for me when it comes to the older models. Some vacuum tube people probably thought things were going downhill with those new-fangled transistor devices. It happens with every shift in technology.
  2. A little more detail. I’ve called the Infinium and TDI entry level devices. ATX lower mid level. SDC and GPX 5000 mid level. Axiom and GPX 6000 upper mid level. And GPZ 7000 the top level device. People crave simple answers. Turns out metal detecting is not quite that simple. Which is better, a GPX 6000 or GPX 5000? The simple answer is GPX 6000. The real answer is it depends on the ground, coils, and settings. Can a GPX 6000 with its largest coil detect a multi ounce nugget deeper than a GPX 5000 with an even larger coil? Well, no, probably not. So I shoot that video and prove the GPX 5000 is better than a GPX 6000, and for half the price. Or I shoot a video, and show a GPX 6000 completely bamboozled by EMI, while a GPX 5000 handles the same EMI with ease. Or, I shoot a video, and show a place with hot rocks where the 6000 signals three times per swing on rocks that sound just like gold, but the GPX 5000 easily tunes them out. I can show all the above. If I do and ask you which is better, the GPX 5000 or GPX 6000, what would the answer be? My answer is the GPX 5000 is one of the most powerful and versatile PI detectors ever made. How it compares to the 6000 depends wholly on the exact situation, with multiple variables taken into account. And the honest reality is that for some uses, some places, the GPX 5000 is the better option than the GPX 6000. If I had to travel the world being plopped into random unknown detecting situations I’d rather have the 5000 because I know it can handle absolutely anything I throw at it. The GPX 6000 is more specialized and high strung, really great most of the time, but pitches a fit in some places and can be difficult to deal with. Real life is not black and white, it’s shades of gray, and detecting is more complex than the simplistic answers some people crave. The GPX 5000 versus GPX 6000 situation above is mirrored perfectly in the Axiom versus GPX 6000 question. They are two devices, both with strengths and weaknesses. Which you may prefer will depend on where you are and what the exact circumstances are. I don’t think either one is better than the other. They are just different, and I like both, would not mind owning both, as they complement each other in some ways, one weak where the other is strong. That’s the truth, that’s the honest answer, not some black and white “this is better than that” pronouncement by some YouTubers with a few hours use under their belts. I respect the people on this forum enough to not offer such pap for the masses, and expect most of you can handle complexity, perhaps even prefer it over dime store approaches.
  3. Yup, big secret. I’ve been posting the link to the above since 2015 every time the subject comes up. From a technical perspective the “tell” is in the audio. A single channel device like the TDI or Fisher Impulse is a single tone response, high tone, or low tone, depending on where the ground balance is set, and whether the response is above or below the ground balance setting. Dual tone devices give you a dual tone, hi/lo or lo/hi, again, depending on where the dual channels are set. Dual channels were developed not because they are more powerful per se, but to fill the dreaded PI hole. Depth of detection and sensitivity is more related to other things in the circuit design, not the mere fact of whether it is dual channel or not. Dual channel processing is simply the PI method most analogous to multifrequency in a VLF. Just being multifrequency does not automatically make a VLF better than the single frequency cousin, unless other factors are done right also. See White’s DFX vs CTX 3030 for the parallel example. DFX is the Infinium of multi, the CTX the GPZ. It all matters as much as what going on inside my iPhone. Either it works or it does not. The Infinium proves there is more to it than just being dual channel or not. ATX was better, and Axiom is better yet. As far as where the Axiom fits in the scheme of things, it sells for more than a GPX 5000 or SDC 2300, and less than a GPX 6000 and GPZ 7000. I’d be calling the 5000 and SDC mid-range models, the Axiom and 6000 upper mid range, and 7000 top end. The White’s TDI and Infinium both were true actual entry level devices, ATX lower mid-range.
  4. Hey Rob, Yeah, the question is legitimate, just not the original social media post that created the question in the first place. But that was probably the goal all along, to cast an aspersion in some way, true or not. All that matters is if users are impressed or not. Honestly, most people are expecting a digital Infinium, and that’s just fine. I’ve gone out of my way to not inflate expectations, as it serves no purpose and gets found out in the end. I’d rather people are pleasantly surprised than disappointed.
  5. A TDI has to be running the higher voltage batteries to have a chance. The 12V won’t cut it. The AQ is basically nothing more than a highly refined TDI taken to the next level. As a TDI fan from way back, it’s more where I had hoped White’s would take the machine. Instead, they watered it down. Long story short I’d still love to get my hands on an AQ done right.
  6. Personally I don’t think stirring the pot as a big this company versus that company grudge match does anyone a bit of good. Ultimately it just sets owners of both brands at each other's throats, nothing I need on these forums. There is no truth in the whole thing and running with it in any way just adds to the perception there is. Garrett has not made Minelabs tech better or worse in any way, because Minelab has nothing at all to do with what’s under the Axiom hood. Again, the Infinium and ATX are dual channel PI. Minelab did not sue over it with the Infinium, so that’s been water under the bridge for almost twenty years, and should be evidence enough Garrett is doing their own thing. There are more than one way to do something, and it’s not like Minelab cornered all of them.
  7. Like I said, nobody now a member would have to pony up a dime. It would just filter new members, and if there are no more because of a dollar, I can certainly live with that. I'm not really seriously considering doing it anyway, as I think this will blow over.
  8. Whatever. You can bet the vested interests will be out in force, people you never heard from will appear to post. I will say that the person involved in this is at best confused. What they are not is accurate. And I love this. "I have nothing bad to say about it and it is a great entry level PI detector." What a typical sly dog type statement, saying you are saying nothing bad while implying just the opposite. My bet would be a multi line dealer, looking to up sell customers into the most expensive model they can. White's licensed the TDI pulse rights from Eric Foster, not Minelab. I can say that with certainly since I helped facilitate the deal. The TDI is basically an improved Goldscan. White's did actually license the base multi patent from Minelab to create the Beachhunter ID and DFX. But as VLF that has no relation to this and is long expired in any case. But even if it was tech licensed to White's and then acquired by Garrett, so what? It's just the same old BS, trying to make something of nothing. Companies cross license constantly. All that matters is how well the Axiom works. But again, there will be plenty of stuff show up from people hiding behind fake names or no names. Sometimes this business has a dark side, and some people no morals or scruples at all when money is involved. Long story short Garrett begat the Infinium, which begat the ATX, which begat the Axiom. All three are dual channel by the way, Axiom is not Garrett's first nor derived from MPS. It's their own stuff developed over nearly 20 years. It's that simple. But hey, now people will say oh, it's just a digital Infinium, can't be any good, blah, blah, blah. Just people mouthing off trying to bring something down without ever having laid hands on it. Everything designed builds on what came before, that's how it works. My Subaru is derived from the Model T, well darn, how sad is that! Hopefully people can see though this kind of red herring smokescreen nonsense for what it is. What if Nokta takes an old expired Minelab patent and gives us a sleek modern improved version at a great price? I'm sure that would be made out to be some sort of crime, but expired patents are fair game, and new players can often take what somebody discarded, and make it better. More power to them. As far as tech goes, I’m not aware of any super duper whiz bang new acronyms being involved. Just taking what they did with ATX and improving on it. If people want to turn a blind eye to the Axiom because of that, no skin off my nose. Go buy a Minelab and be happy. Does anyone except those making a buck off sales really care one way or the other? I don’t. Just ignore all the deflection sure to come, and pay attention only to the people that are buying the Axiom with their money and reporting on it. That's who gets to decide if the Axiom is any good or not - the people buying it. The real zoo will get started any minute now, with the this versus that videos. Somebody will bury a nugget, and say "oh, see" without going into all the other factors involved. Lets see some heavy EMI tests. Some serious hot rock tests. Some salt ground tests. Some "how well does this work in a trashy area tests." The whole picture, not just the tiny part of the picture somebody wants us to focus on.
  9. So people might ask why, if it is a PI detector, does the iron mineralization have such an adverse affect on the accuracy of the Iron Check? My answer is people are complacent in their faith in VLF detectors in bad ground. In iron mineralized soil, as you bury any target, large or small, deeper, the signal gets weaker. As the target signal gets weaker, the ground signal is getting larger by proportion. Every detector with discrimination I have ever used, if you bury the target deep enough, the signal flips from non-ferrous to ferrous. People tend to think this only happens with small gold nuggets. No, it will happen just as much with silver coins and one ounce gold nuggets. The size does not matter, because if buried deep enough all targets sound the same - small and weak. Anyone using a VLF in bad soil is constantly missing targets at depth that are called ferrous, but actually are not. It can happen at ridiculously shallow depths in bad ground. I have seen very good detectors call a non-ferrous target sitting on the ground, in plain sight, a ferrous target! Frankly, people who only hunt turf and mild ground are completely clueless as to how severe this issue is. It makes those of us who work in the worst ground laugh when we see depth testing in YouTube videos showing things like a VLF hitting a dime at 14". Yeah, in some other world, or my dreams, because it sure won't happen where I hunt! Anyway, the Axiom as a PI sees even more dirt than a VLF, so the iron mineralization to good target signal is horrible, and there is far less info for a PI to work with in the first place, since phase is not involved. Mostly it’s all time delay and eddy current retention, so when it comes to targets, PI is only really halfway good at separating large or strong conductive targets, from small or weak conductive targets. Not ferrous from non-ferrous. I don't use YouTube for much besides learning how to fix my washing machine or truck. This video though I have posted quite a few times because it is a great illustration of something you do have to see to believe. Long story short PI discrimination is pretty unreliable in bad ground, where nugget hunters tend to work, but VLF has little to brag about either. It's why, at the end of the day, I always end up going back to my PI detectors. I have tried and tried and tried to be happy with a VLF as a nugget hunting device in bad ground, and it is not happening. Milder ground, sure. But in bad ground, it quickly gets down to digging everything, and if I am doing that most of the time, may as well have a PI. This video is inches on a button. Keep in mind a good VLF can pull targets like these up at over a foot in the worst ground with no problem. Just a note though. At the very end, when he makes it look like the Deus is doing better than the other detectors, he stops waving the coil over the adjacent nail that was masking the other detectors, and just hovers over the target. But the lesson is still there. Bad ground really impedes ferrous vs non-ferrous discrimination, and put some ferrous trash in the mix, it's basically game over.
  10. Duh, I’m stupid. It would not need to be a $1 a year because all I really care about is filtering new memberships. So you all get grandfathered in, and new members have to pay $1 for a lifetime membership, as long as account is in good standing. That just may be the ticket, and anyone not willing to pay a one time fee of $1 can just lurk anyway.
  11. As well as any PI discrimination - anyone expecting VLF type discrimination will be disappointed. PI discrimination no matter how you do it is pretty poor with lots of good judgement necessary by the user. When in doubt, dig it out. But light years better than the 6000 in that regard. I get it. Minelab is saying that PI disc sucks, so forcing the issue by not offering the option at all. There is no doubt we should dig all targets. But I think there is also no doubt many of us still cherry pick when faced with too many targets, most being nails. We simply dig what sounds good. If that is indeed our reality, and I think it is for most of us, then having all the disc ability possible for use is a good thing, and so I welcome the Garrett Iron Check feature as just that. Another way of double checking targets in trashy areas. But do not fall into a bad habit of leaning on it a lot all the time. The more naturally occurring iron ground mineral you have, the more risk the system gets fooled, to the point where in heavy magnetite I'd say it's more likely to be fooled than not. The disc is better for coin and relic hunters in one way. If the system tricks me in bad ground and I miss a nice gold nugget, that is a pretty big deal. If I am relic hunting, and it makes me miss a bullet or two, but gets rid of most ferrous, well, that seems more acceptable deal to me at least. Though the relics hunters may beg to differ! If you want to be conservative and use the Iron Check in the safest way, consider using it as a reverse disc system. In other words, many of us get pretty good at picking and choosing targets with a pulse induction detector. Most gold tends to give sweeter high/low tones. Most low/high tones are larger junk (or larger gold nuggets). So people like myself will sometimes focus more on high/low tones and ignore the low/high as nails. But the low/high can be the largest nuggets! So think about this. You are in a nail pit and decide at some point to skip the low/high as being trash targets. OK, so far, that's normal. But now, go ahead and use the Iron Check to verify this. If it gives a consistent iron grunt on a low/high target, it is almost sure to actually be ferrous. If it does not give the grunt or seems unsure, maybe you better dig that one after all. The Iron Check has limitations, first being it does not work at all on the deepest targets. The tones do, but Iron Check only works at 2/3 or half of the full depth. The deepest nails are not going to Iron Grunt. However, a lot of nails are shallower, so this offers a middle ground. Instead of ignoring low/high signals, only ignore low/high signals that also have a solid Iron Grunt. This double check verification is a much less risky strategy. Yes, it does mean you will dig the deeper nails. Sorry, but you can also with good accuracy eliminate all those much more common nails that are just below the surface. Consider also that a deep low/high is not going to be a small nugget; if it's gold, it might just be the biggest nugget you ever dig in your life. You are looking for a trophy nugget in a nail pit, this might help you better your odds. What I am saying here is to use the iron check to make you dig targets you might have otherwise passed on - reverse discrimination. Now what about the small nuggets, the high/low tones, that by nature will be shallower targets? And small ferrous trash, that sounds the same? The ferrous check is also great for small ferrous in milder soils. But again, if in heavy magnetite, be less trustful. Look for reasons to dig, not reasons to skip targets. If the iron grunt is indecisive at all, dig it! When in doubt, dig it out!! A good super magnet on your pick head is a more accurate and very efficient way of dealing with the shallower smaller stuff. A reminder - the Iron Check only works with the Garrett DD coils. Another reason to consider the 11" DD over the 11" mono for hunting the trashy sites.
  12. Nothing to put up with if a person only lurks - it's some of the posts that need putting up with! Seriously, lurkers are very welcome, they simply do not need an account and space on my server to do it. The membership list is 325 pages long now. Again, nobody need worry as long as the system shows they have a post. It shows you posted twice before Jim, so now your post count is three! Better safe than sorry, and as sodbuster has noted, turned out to be a more fun thread than I thought or intended when I started it.
  13. I don't want to hijack this thread, so started a new one on this subject only here: Notes On The Axiom Iron Check Feature And on another thread I went deep on the question of GPX 6000 vs Axiom, so check it out
  14. I did indeed just throw in the towel, and go to having to manually review and approve every new membership application. There are just too many spammers hitting between 2am and 5am for me to let it ride as is. It will make it take longer for a new person to register, and I may ever accidentally discard a legit person now and then, but it can't be helped. The obvious spammers I just ban and add to the database. The questionable ones I simply delete the registration so they can try again, or maybe contact me to say they are having difficulty, if they care enough to try that hard. People have mentioned paid membership as a way of supporting the forum. A kind thought, but something I've always rebelled at even considering. It occurs to me now that having a very nominal membership fee might solve a couple issues. First, it sorts out inactive accounts on a yearly basis. But mainly it would be a serious block on spammers of any sort, bot or human. I'm nowhere near that now, but a last resort way down the road might be a $1 a year membership fee. I can't see that as an impediment to anyone that cares, and I can't see any spammers ever paying even a dollar to spam a site. Comments welcome on that subject, but don't worry, it's not happening now or anytime soon, unless this gets to be a real problem. My main fear is new AI coming online that can defeat any other possibility. It is all but inevitable I'm afraid. Being winter it's all fine I guess, not like I'm really doing that much anyway, that checking registrations is a big deal. Might be more the issue if I take off to Alaska again next summer, and go off grid a substantial period of time. In that case I may just suspend new registrations for the period involved. Luckily chasing membership numbers is not a huge priority in my life. We have a really great crew here already!
  15. The TDIs can be a little different if you are using the stock White's Dual Field coil. A standard mono is just a simple ring shaped loop. The White's dual design has an inner loop and an outer loop. The intent was to fill that small target hole in the center of a traditional mono coil, and to a large degree it does just that.
  16. Gun to head for gold nuggets I still tend to give the nod to the 6000, but it is a close thing, and on most targets you’ll get the nugget with either detector. Coils matter a lot and having the right coil will make a big difference in how these various tests go. But I think in the end ground conditions will be paramount in deciding which way the scales may tip, and some conditions will favor the 6000, while others will be better with the Axiom. A few operators may end up keeping both around. The 6000 is absolutely my favorite Minelab, no doubt about that. The Axiom will also without a doubt tackle some situations that will have a 6000 owner pulling their hair out. It’s a win win for everybody as far as I am concerned. It is a case where there is no need for anyone who is happy with their 6000 to ditch it and get an Axiom instead. For a new person trying to decide which way to go, I’ll offer this one tidbit. The 6000 is pretty well focused as being just for nugget detecting. You can use it for other things, but in general I’d say it’s the less versatile of the two. But an excellent choice for nugget detecting, for sure. The Axiom on the other hand, will find great favor not just with nugget hunters, but relic hunters, and once we get a good neutral buoyancy coil, the beach and water hunters. If versatility matters, Axiom is the hands down winner in my opinion. Now if we can just get Fisher and Nokta to the table, to make the choices even harder. Me, I love options, and the competition needed to give us the options. It’s better for us as consumers, and ultimately healthy for the manufacturers themselves. Companies need competition to help them be their best, and I’m really glad Garrett has stepped up to help keep that competition alive.
  17. We have it on good authority that the Final Impulse AQ Version will be available by spring 2021. And it was… for Joe! Too bad about the rest of us. I have to say I feel more sorry for Alexandre than anyone. He no doubt really believed he was hooked up with a company that was going to make all these things happen. One of the saddest state of affairs I have observed in my 50 years as an industry hound dog. Mono coils are hottest near the winding. Large deep targets will be in the center of the coil. The closer you get to the coil, the more the signal pulls to the edges. The classic shallow target indication for a PI mono coil is that you have to pay attention to what is a single target at depth, or a shallower target double bleeping, once on each edge. Some people get fooled by a shallow target under one edge, and dig for the center, missing the target. Using a wide sweep and paying attention is critical in preventing this from happening. Tilting the coil slightly on edge can verify suspected edge type targets, since they are shallow enough to hit on one edge. This doubles as a great pinpointing method. As a nugget hunter I constantly find shallow small nuggets that blip under each edge of the coil, so I know they are small and shallow. More mellow centered targets, I know I need to dig a deeper hole.
  18. Yup, I already have a 6” coil, don’t need another. Just another tiny reason why I may get the Manticore instead. Though knowing me, ending up with both a Nox 900 and Manticore is not impossible either.
  19. That's how I like to test detectors myself, so thank you for that, and a great report Keith. Note that on some ground and gold combinations the 11" DD may also be the better choice for the smallest gold. Garrett DD coils are different than people expect. I am not a fan of the MS-3 audio myself, and just posted an article on the subject. Bottom line is the Garrett WR-1 solves the problem, while being seven times faster than Bluetooth, and compatible with the Garrett wireless pinpointer and other metal detectors. Best part is it uses the inbuilt Axiom transmitter, so no need for the separate WT-1 transmitter box, unless you also want to use it with other detectors.
  20. Speed is similar. The module is smaller, and considering the ability to pair a pinpointer with the system, or other detectors, and far lower price, I'd say better.
  21. Wow relentless attack starting at 3:30 am my time. Over 100 spam with 214 reports by the time I was up at 4:30 am. Thanks Wendall Clark and geoff_junk for taking so much time to report them. Looks like I’ll have to moderate new registrations for now.
  22. Thanks. Just goes with the territory. Life is exceeding good in Stevie Land…. this is a minor annoyance at worst.
  23. Yeah, but I don’t want to review every new applicant. The IP address info already goes into the distributed Invision spam system, anytime anyone with an Invision based website flags somebody as a spammer, it immediately blocks them on all Invision sites, so it’s a huge team effort actually. But these guys are a never ending fountain of addresses and emails. I’ve already taken some steps and I’m pretty sure this will abate. My last resort is to go to approving every new registrant, but I’ll avoid that until the bittter end. Most spam is generated by bots, and what makes this different is it’s an army of people, so they can avoid all the measure in place that block bots. The good news is that these are people ,they are doing it to get paid, and if they can’t get paid for wasting time here, they will go away. Spammers talk to each other about where the easy marks are, and who to avoid, and they are getting no joy here, that’s for sure. I nuked two today within two minutes of them having posted a stream of spam, they were here and gone so fast nobody noticed. So they go through the registration process and post, taking 10-15 minutes, and I nuke them in less than a minute. Time is on my side on this.
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