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  1. The White's Goldmaster 24K is a new 48 kHz gold nugget detector released in the fall of 2018. Production models started shipping in September and White's forwarded one to me to check out. What follows are my thoughts after a couple days of detecting for gold on several northern Nevada nugget patches. The Goldmaster 24K marks a break with the past as White's moves from the older metal box designs of the past to newer plastic cases. The Goldmaster 24K physical design is the latest in the evolution of the MX series. The control box itself is derived directly from that used on the White's MX5. The control pod / display originated with the TreasurePro and later used in the MX Sport and MX7 designs. Basically the Goldmaster 24K is in the same housing and rod design as the White's MX7. Manufacturers face a difficult design choice these days. In general users want metal detectors to be as light as possible. However, weight is not everything - balance matters every bit as much. The problem is that a metal detector search coil is basically a weight on the end of a long stick. Coils can only be made so light due to engineering constraints requiring a certain amount of copper wire and a reasonably robust coil housing. The coil then has a lot to do with determining the final ergonomics of the detector. If the coil weight is not balanced at the other end with some kind of offsetting weight, the detector is nose heavy. This in turn creates torque everytime the detector changes directions which puts stress on the operators arm. The detector can be made as light as possible, or can be perfectly balanced, but it is almost impossible to do both in one detector. Any detector that weighs less than 3 pounds is almost certain to be nose heavy because enough weight does not exist to balance the weight of the coil. In order to have enough weight to work with it appears the minimum is about 3.5 lbs for detectors that are well balanced. The extra weight is almost always in the form of a battery box located under the elbow. White's has gone this route is the MX series designs with a battery box holding 8 AA batteries under the elbow acting as a balancing weight. This results not only in a well balanced detector but a detector with enough batteries to operate for multiple days between charges or battery changes. White's Goldmaster 24K metal detector for gold prospecting Another big choice manufacturers have to make these days is whether to use a straight rod or a "S" rod design. Users tend to be evenly split as to which they prefer, and so this is a choice the manufacturer cannot possibly win. About half the people are going to be unhappy whichever way you go. Industrial type users like beach hunters and prospectors tends to prefer straight rods. Coin, jewelry, and relic hunters seem more inclined to "S" rods. I have used many detectors with either setup and have been happy with both or unhappy with both. The deciding factor for me has been more about the exact size, shape, and angle of the hand grip than the actual rod design. I do not have over-sized hands, and so I tend to prefer a smaller diameter grip. Other people like a larger grip. I went into all that detail to be sure the reader understands that weight and balance is very much a personal preference item. Getting a detector to fit right for everyone is like making a pair of boots that fits everyone. You can't do it. Therefore when I say that the MX physical design as employed in the Goldmaster 24K is a very good fit for me don't take that as meaning it will be great for you. Yet it is a very good fit for me and quite comfortable on my arm, with just enough forward weight to keep my elbow in the arm cup without having to use the arm strap. The design is also lighter than the White's GMT by nearly half a pound, so the Goldmaster 24K is both well balanced and lighter than what came before. The Goldmaster 24K with 10" elliptical coil and with batteries installed weighs 3 lbs 7 oz (3.4 lbs) or 1562 grams on my digital postal scale. The Goldmaster 24K has an IP54 rated enclosure that has a high level of protection against dust particles, and a fair amount of protection against water. The coils are waterproof but the detector itself is not submersible so keep that display pod out of the water. The "S" rod is a three piece design with excellent quality twist locks that create a firm, wobble free rod assembly when fully engaged. The armrest position is not adjustable but it is well placed. The 24K is powered by eight AA batteries in a battery holder that pops out of the rear of the battery box. The 24K is supplied with eight alkaline AA batteries but rechargeable batteries may be substituted for use in the battery holder. The 24K can get up to 40 hours operation using high quality alkaline batteries and while using headphones (external speakers use more power). The Goldmaster 24K does have a speaker built into the rear of the display pod, and there is a female 1/4" headphone jack directly above the battery door. White's thoughtfully includes a small plastic plug to insert into this hole when not in use. White's 24K battery holder and headphone jack location The Goldmaster 24K is available in two versions. One comes with a 5.5" x 10" DD coil as the stock coil. The other package also adds a 6.5" round concentric coil for a two coil package. Scuff covers for the coils are not included with the detector. The 5.5" x 10" DD search coil weighs 14.5 oz or 412 grams. The coil is 1" thick. The 6.5" round concentric coil is 3/4" thick and weighs 13.1 oz or 370 grams. Therefore the 24K when outfitted with the 6" concentric weighs in at 3 lbs 5 oz (3.3 lbs). White's also has a 13.5" x 8" DD available soon that weighs 1 lb 8 oz or 682 grams. Finally, a version of the 4" x 6" Shooter DD is in the works also. Do note that all pre-existing coils for other White's Goldmaster or GMT models are not compatible with the Goldmaster 24K. The 24K pumps about 50% more voltage to the coils than previous models, requiring tighter tolerances in the new coils. The coil connector has been changed to prevent confusion. 5.5" x 10" DD search coil and 6.5" round concentric coil for White's Goldmaster 24K The Goldmaster 24K shares many functions with the White's GMT model but there are differences. The most obvious being that the GMT uses knobs for control adjustments. The 24K uses a sealed touchpad which is more water and dust resistant, but some controls have secondary functions that necessitate having the Quick Guide near at hand when learning the detector. The 24K like the GMT does of course have a sensitivity control, and like on all hot VLF detectors it is a critical control. The solution to most problems regarding metal detector instability or interference is to reduce the sensitivity. The 24K features both automatic ground tracking or a fixed ground balance adjusted via a tap of a "ground grab" button - in this case the pinpoint button, which doubles as a ground grab when given a quick tap. Ground tracking can be a great function for variable ground and people new to detecting. Personally I prefer to lock the ground setting (via the "Lock" button) and update it manually via the ground grab function. I did use the ground tracking however, just to try it out. It is lightning quick, taking just a pump or two to track into the ground. Ground grabs are instantaneous. The White's GMT allowed for a locked ground balance to be tweaked up or down manually via plus or minus buttons on the control pod. The 24K takes a slightly different route by allowing a "ground balance offset" to be dialed into the detector. The ground balance offset is a powerful feature and so deserves some explanation. Prospectors often prefer manual ground balance because they can choose their own setting that for various reason might be different than what a machine will choose using a preset function like ground grab. Ground grab may be set to deliver a very neutral ground balance. The prospector may prefer that the balance be slightly positive to help enhance tiny nugget signals. They may want to choose a ground balance setting halfway between the ground itself and some pesky hot rock, which may mean adjusting either positive or negative from the neutral setting. This might require that the operator first do a ground grab, then hit the plus button a couple times to manually offset the ground balance. The 24K has a "Follow The Black Sand" mode like on the GMT but it is now called Ground Scan. Ground Scan is enabled by pushing and holding the ground balance "Lock" button. While in Ground Scan the "Up" and "Down" buttons create a ground balance offset. This offset is retained when you leave Ground Scan mode and will be applied both when doing a ground grab and even while in ground tracking mode. The Ground Scan / Follow The Black Sand thing is intended to allow a prospector to locate and trace shallow magnetic sand deposits that might indicate potential gold concentrations. This is a rarely used function, but including the offset ability means this function may be accessed much more often just to create these ground balance offsets. With the GMT you could ground grab and then manually tweak the setting, but the tweak had to be applied every time the ground grab is performed. Now the offset can be dialed in and automatically applied. The real zinger however is that this also allows the 24K ground tracking function to be directly tweaked - very, very rare indeed. Almost every detector I have ever used has a preset ground tracking circuit that puts the ground balance where it wants, end of story. With the White's Goldmaster 24K you can create a tracking offset to deal with hot rocks in a way that simply can't be done with most other ground tracking systems. Really cool White's! White's Goldmaster 24K with 13.5" x 8" DD coil (prototype lacking decal) The 24K has the volume control the GMT lacks which is quite handy for those who want to run without headphones but not necessarily at full volume. There are 8 levels of volume plus two boost settings, Boost 1 (b1) and Boost 2 (b2) that kick in when you adjust the volume control above 8. The GMT features a Variable Self Adjusting Threshold (V/SAT) control that governs the rate at which the audio resets itself when passing over a target or ground variations. The GMT has a knob that runs from 1 to 10 and on the Goldmaster 24K the SAT setting has been simplified to three settings - off, medium, and fast. The default setting of medium is all most people will ever need. However, in extreme low mineral ground the off setting can enhance weak signals, although the detector may need very careful coil control and slower coil sweeps to allow the circuit to keep up. Conversely, extreme high mineral variable ground may require the fast setting to smooth out variations in the ground signal. The threshold control itself is interesting. Normally on an old school threshold based all metal detector the all metal mode and threshold are one and the same. The Goldmaster 24K like some newer digital models appears to employ what is referred to as a "reference threshold". The threshold may be adjusted, but appears to be disconnected from the all metal channel and is instead layered on in parallel. The SAT control above does directly affect the all metal channel as described above. Yet it does what it does whether the threshold is present or not. Reference thresholds often exist for the sole purpose of nulling or going silent when passing over items that have been discriminated out, but this does not happen when the Iron Cancel (see below) is engaged. While bench testing in all metal with the SAT set at zero I thought I might just be able to hear a waver in the threshold. I would be interested in hearing from other nugget hunting experts on this matter, because in my opinion the threshold as it exists on the Goldmaster 24K is not coupled to the all metal channel in the manner one would observe on the GMT for instance. The only effect seems to be with threshold completely off the 24K will no longer give any ground feedback at all if out of ground balance. Based purely on what I am observing in actual use I would say the 24K is a silent search detector with a reference threshold added as opposed to a true threshold based all metal circuit like on the GMT. The difference is subtle but there for my ear at least and if there is a connection there between threshold and all metal channel, it is too minimal for me to discern while in actual use. Now we get into the real meat of where the GMT and Goldmaster 24K part ways. The GMT has an iron (ferrous) probability meter as does the Goldmaster 24K. The GMT meter is merely a bar graph - far left means 10% chance of ferrous and far right means 90% chance of ferrous. Somewhere in the middle means 50% chance of ferrous. The Goldmaster 24K puts a blacked out block at the top of the screen with similar positioning, but the actual percentage numbers display out as a "target id" number. This is not a target id number as thought of on coin detectors, but instead intended to be a display of the odds that an item is non-ferrous. White's Goldmaster 24K controls and display screen If you look at the display above there is a colored bar at the top of the 24K LCD meter - red on left, wide yellow middle, and dark gray on right. The three colors taper one into the other to indicate overlap. The red on the right indicates the probable ferrous range, and dark gray indicates items reading too high to probably be gold, but more likely a copper, brass, or silver item (high conductors) or certain ferrous items that "wrap around" and "read high". These include hardened steel items like large bolts, almost any washers, ax heads, etc. In theory this scale could be used for coin detecting but the coins with few exceptions like a nickel tend to bunch up all on the right. The intent really is to be more of a ferrous/non-ferrous meter but I do think I could make do with this for some general detecting scenarios. In air tests a nickel read 88, zinc penny 95, dime 96, and quarter 97. The Goldmaster 24K has an Audio Mode button that engages and disengages something analogous to the "Iron Grunt" feature on the GMT. Engaging the Audio Mode replaces the normal VCO type "zippy" audio with a simple high or low beep. Any meter reading below 50 will deliver the low "ferrous" beep and anything 50 or higher a high "non-ferrous" beep. Since the gold probability range runs much lower this is helping the operator concentrate only on the high probability targets - anything with over a 50% chance of being non-ferrous. This "over 50% equals non-ferrous" audio mode could be useful for direct hunting in some situations. However, when pushing the detector hard in all metal mode and then switching the Audio ID mode on I found that I would have to reduce sensitivity or encounter quite a few false signals in mineralized ground. That being the case I was more prone to using this as a ferrous check by engaging the button for a quick audio reading, then back again to all metal mode. The Audio Mode as I described it above acts much like the Iron Grunt feature on the GMT, but on the GMT the ferrous audio alert only kicks in when there is an 85% or greater chance of the item being ferrous. It is not a certainty on how the percentages correlate, but the 24K audio ferrous tone does kick in at readings of 50 and below (greater than 50% chance of being ferrous). Borderline gold targets can read lower than this however, down into the 40s and even lower. A 30% chance of gold is still pretty good odds. So what to do now except read the numbers? White's has addressed this with another control, the Iron Cancel button. Engaging Iron Cancel activates an adjustable iron rejection setting. The default is for anything reading 15 or lower to simply not beep. This corresponds to the solid red area on the bar graph display at the top of the meter. Borderline or mixed content items will break up or give erratic readings. The best part however is that the setting can be adjusted from 0 all the way up to 62. This allows the operator to completely block out a chosen range of low end readings that is either more conservative or more aggressive than the Audio Mode preset. As noted before, the threshold, if any is used, will not blank over rejected items - they are simply ignored. I noted above that highly conductive items and some steel items can read at the very high end of the scale, typically 95 and above. If the goal really is gold it is very unlikely that readings this high will be gold and so White's also offers the ability to block out this high end range. Tapping the "lock" button while in the ferrous adjustment mode will automatically block all readings of 94 and higher, which is where most iron high end false signals will occur. Other controls on the Goldmaster 24K - a pinpoint function, frequency shift to help avoid electrical interference or for running two 24Ks close together, a backlight for the meter for low light conditions, and finally, a factory reset. White's Goldmaster 24K with stock 10" x 5.5" DD coil Now for the part everyone has been waiting for - how does the Goldmaster 24K at finding gold? When I test nugget detectors I tend to concentrate on smaller gold. First, because it is more plentiful and easier to find in limited time frames for testing purposes. Realistically small gold also challenges the detector the most. A metal detector must be tuned as hot as possible to find very small bits of gold. Yet this also causes problems with mineralized ground and hot rocks. It is not so much the small gold sensitivity that matters but how the metal detector handles the ground while tuned up for tiny gold. This is why air tests are minimally useful for nugget hunters. They can reveal theoretical information about how small or how deep a detector can find gold under perfect conditions. Air tests give no indication however of how the detector will handle bad ground and hot rocks when tuned to the max. A detector can air test extremely well and fail completely in the field. Therefore when you see my metal detector test reports, pay attention to the smallest nuggets I find, not the larger ones. The 10" DD coil is a good all around nugget hunting coil, with DD coils having the advantage for handling difficult ground. It was the 6.5" round concentric that wowed me however and after I got it on the detector I really did not want to take it off. The 10" DD will be a better choice for really bad ground, but lacks that magic edge on the tiniest bits of gold. I also appreciate that concentric coils are easier to pinpoint with, and generally have better ferrous identification performance compared to DD coils. One nice thing about the 24K being well balanced is the 13.5" x 8" coil is less nose heavy than would be the case for an unbalanced detector. This is the coil to use for covering ground in search of larger gold nuggets. For medium to milder ground and the smaller gold however I really do like that little concentric. In particular there is a lot of grass growing in some desert areas, and the 24K with 6" coil was perfect for mowing through the grass to keep the coil on the ground. This is another area where an "S" shaft has the advantage. A straight shaft detector wants to roll to the side when forcing the coil against resistance, where a balanced "S" shaft being in line with your arm does not produce that kind of rollover torque. The 10" x 5.5" DD coil was a little more prone to false signals when bumped hard than the concentric coil, to the point where I could run higher sensitivity with the concentric on this particular ground. The ground in lots of Nevada is rather mild, often with alkali (salt) content, and it may or may not have bad hot rocks. This particular location had two types of hot rocks to deal with. The bottom line is I was able to run the concentric at full sensitivity of 10, and in audio boost 2 (b2) while in all metal mode and SAT set at medium (default). Even with the machine maxed out like this the detector ran well, and as I said before falsed less than the DD coil would if I attempted the same settings. White's new XGB ground balancing system really does seem to do a good job finding a setting that works well with both hot rocks and the ground by tracking multiple ground balance points. I liked to engage tracking, run over a mix of ground and hot rocks, and then lock the setting. I was scrubbing and pretty much digging everything. The Goldmaster 24K with the little concentric is hot as a pistol and as usual if you give me a hot detector I was able to find some really tiny gold. The eight nuggets below weigh a total of 8.3 grains (not grams - 480 grains per Troy ounce). The largest nugget is 1.8 grains and the smallest are in that under 1/10th gain range. Now, none of these were super deep because you can't find tiny gold super deep, but they were all good zippy targets - and I was not using headphones! Gold nuggets found by Steve with new White's Goldmaster 24K - smallest under 1/10th grain The proof is in the pudding and there is no doubt the Goldmaster 24K can find the gold, and some really small gold at that. I am not going to try and convince anyone that there is some kind of magic breakthrough here - at the end of the day the 24K is a hot 48 kHz single frequency metal detector just like the GMT in many regards. Some oldtimers may still prefer the GMT for its threshold being tightly connected to the all metal channel while the threshold connection on the 24K is much weaker. Although the Goldmaster 24K can be run hot and noisy, all it's design features point to a detector that is intended to be set up as quiet as possible, and this may even mean running without a threshold. I did not see any evidence that this would really hurt the performance at all. This kind of quiet hunting tends to appeal more to people new to nugget detecting, especially those who cross over from coin detecting. Add this to the lighter weight and lower cost package and White's has done a great job producing an alternative to the admittedly long in the tooth GMT. Steve Herschbach DetectorProspector.com White's Goldmaster 24K Information Page White's Goldmaster 24K & GMT Compared Little gold nugget on coil fresh out of the ground
  2. Testing on a piece of Colonial gold I found.
  3. Hi Everyone. I am new to this forum but have been gold prospecting and metal detecting for many years. I have used machines from just about every major maker of metal detectors with except XP. I recent bought a Equinox 600 and have been testing it out. I have been making a lot of test comparisons with my fishers etc. And I realized today that the 600 does not have a true all metal mode like my fishers. Closest setting is Park 2' with iron detect turned on, but thats it. The 600 is not as sensitive as my F70 on small gold either when using the 15 hz setting. It says in the manual that single freqencies (machines) may have an advantage over multi freqs in certain situations. That fact really Shocked me. What's the point of using a multi freq machine if it is not superior in all situations? I tested the 600 against my Fisher F44 and F70 using the standard 11 in Dd coils on the fishers and the standard 11 in dd on the eqnox 600. The fishers out performed the 600 in just about every test. The one exception was on wet sand saltwater beaches, The 600 was slightly better there using beach 2, but that's it! The F44 with sensitivity turned down was almost as good. The F44 is lighter by a half pound, which matters a lot in all day hunts And finally it may be my familiarity with Fisher products but the fishers handle much better then the minelab 600 (coil wabble) That said, The minelab is not a bad machine but I'll take the fishers over it any day.
  4. Head to head shootout of the 9 inch coils...Steve if this causes to much drama I understand.
  5. What features should be standard in a 21st century metal detector? Going forward I have a couple basic features I would like in any new detector model I get. Given the current state of the art, the detector may as well be waterproof. This used to incur a penalty by way of limited features, increased weight, or lack of coil options, but those days are past. And at this point built in wireless headphone capability is a must for above water use (hardwired phones are required underwater). The following detectors are all waterproof to at least ten feet, and all have built in wireless headphone capability. All have built in waterproof speakers and optional interchangeable search coils. Click chart for larger version. 21st Century Metal Detectors - Waterproof and Wireless Headphones 21st Century Metal Detectors (Waterproof & Wireless) Quest 40 Makro Kruzer 14 Minelab Equinox 600 Garrett AT Max Makro Gold Kruzer Quest Pro Makro Multi Kruzer Nokta Anfibio 14 Nokta Anfibio 19 Minelab Equinox 800 Nokta Anfibio Multi Minelab CTX 3030 All these models although waterproof feature coils that can be swapped out. Back in the day waterproof detectors usually came with only a single hardwired coil, but there is no need to settle for that now. All these models have three or more coil options available. If a detector is truly new, less than a year on the market, then I want it to have the ability to be updated via the internet. Once a detector has been on the market over a year this is not quite as important but still desirable. All these models except the Garrett AT Max and Quest 40/Pro may receive firmware updates via the internet. All the models listed have built in sealed rechargeable batteries, except for the Garrett AT Max, which uses removable AA batteries. Sealed batteries provide for better waterproof integrity, but eventually the batteries will have to be serviced. The operating frequency options vary with these detectors. If the detector is to be used in or around saltwater very much, do consider multifrequency as the preferred option for most saltwater use. The Makro Gold Kruzer is a special case, with a very high 61 kHz frequency making it more an option for gold prospectors, jewelry hunters, or relic hunters looking for very small non-ferrous targets. Because of this high operating frequency the Gold Kruzer is the least saltwater friendly detector in this roundup. Although all these models have built in wireless, they all feature proprietary systems with the exception of the Minelab Equinox, which has a proprietary system but also offers standard Low Latency Bluetooth. Right now proprietary solutions can offer less audio lag but at the price of being locked into using the proprietary headphone options, which tend to be limited. Low Latency Bluetooth is fast enough for most people and no doubt will be faster in the future, so look for proprietary offerings to fade away. 21st Century Metal Detectors - Waterproof & Wireless
  6. Smaller coils attached in pic. For gee whiz, longest section with coils removed both detector is the lower rod on Equinox. It measures 24 1/8”.
  7. Handheld Underwater Metal Detectors Assessment Report - February 2014 FOREWORD The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) established the System Assessment and Validation for Emergency Responders (SAVER) Program to assist emergency responders making procurement decisions. Located within the Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) of DHS, the SAVER Program conducts objective assessments and validations on commercially available equipment and systems, and develops knowledge products that provide relevant equipment information to the emergency responder community. The SAVER Program mission includes: Conducting impartial, practitioner-relevant, operationally oriented assessments and validations of emergency response equipment; and Providing information, in the form of knowledge products, that enables decision-makers and responders to better select, procure, use, and maintain emergency response equipment. SAVER Program knowledge products provide information on equipment that falls under the categories listed in the DHS Authorized Equipment List (AEL), focusing primarily on two main questions for the responder community: “What equipment is available?” and “How does it perform?” These knowledge products are shared nationally with the responder community, providing a life- and cost-saving asset to DHS, as well as to Federal, state, and local responders. EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Handheld underwater metal detectors assist public safety divers with locating metallic objects underwater by providing visual, audible, and/or vibration alerts when these objects are detected. In August 2013, the System Assessment and Validation for Emergency Responders (SAVER) Program conducted an operationally oriented assessment of handheld underwater metal detectors. Eight handheld underwater metal detectors were assessed by public safety divers. The criteria and scenarios used in this assessment were derived from the results of a focus group of public safety divers with experience using handheld underwater metal detectors. The assessment addressed 18 evaluation criteria in four SAVER categories: Capability, Deployability, Maintainability, and Usability. MODELS EVALUATED JW Fishers Mfg. Inc. – Pulse 8X Garrett Electronics Inc. – Sea Hunter™ Mark II Fisher® Research Labs – CZ-21 QuickSilver Aquascan International Ltd. – Aquapulse 1B Minelab Americas Inc. – Excalibur II Tesoro Electronics Inc. – Tiger Shark White’s Electronics Inc. – Surf PI Dual Field Kellyco Metal Detectors – Viper Hybrid Trident Download the full pdf report here
  8. I myself didn’t buy but just one detector and that was a Equinox 800 . I found it to be a great detector for coin hunting and that’s the reason I bought it . The first thing I done was print the owners manual full size for easy reading. I never found the Nox a problem to run . If you had the instruction manual and you could read plus understand you were good to go . The only trouble I did have was with the on and off switch. I’d had it having to wait on the 6” coil so I sold it . I told the guy about the switch when I sold it . He used it for a while but called Minelab and they fixed it . I guess it was in trouble from day one . Right now I’m just going to sit back and see what 2019 has to offer. Chuck PS Everyone who post here puts their name in for a hard cover book on Rocks and Minerals. I will ship free to anyone on this earth. You can post as much as you want but your name only goes in one time for the drawing This will end on November 16 at 6 PM CST
  9. Which metal detectors have the most reliable target ID numbers? Target ID is a function of depth - the deeper the target, the more difficult it is to get a clean target ID as the ground signal interferes. Other items directly adjacent to the desired target can also cause inaccurate numbers. The more conductive the item, the higher the resulting ID number, but also the larger the item the higher the number. Silver is more conductive than gold, so a gold item will give a lower number than the same size silver item. But a very large gold item can give a higher number than a small silver item, so numbers do not identify types of metal. Gold and aluminum read the same and vary in size so to dig one you dig the other. Only mass produced items like coins produce numbers that are more or less the same over the years but a zinc penny will read lower than a copper penny due to the change in composition. In general iron or ferrous targets produce negative numbers or low numbers. Aluminum, gold, and US nickels produce mid-range numbers. And most other US coins produce high numbers. Other countries coins, like Canadian coins with ferrous content, can read all over the place. The scale applied varies according to manufacturer so the number produced by each detector will vary according to the scale used. The 0-100 range for non-ferrous targets is most common but there are others. Minelab employs a dual number system on a 2D scale with thousands of possible numbers, but they are now normalizing the results produced to conform more closely to the linear scale used by other manufacturers. Increasing ground mineralization has a huge effect on the ability to get a good target ID. Ground mineralization is nearly always from iron mineralization, and this tends to make weak targets, whether very small targets or very deep targets, misidentify. The target numbers get dragged lower, and many non-ferrous targets will eventually be identified as iron if buried deep enough. Small non-ferrous readings and iron readings actually overlap. That is why any discrimination at all is particularly risky for gold nugget hunters. If you want target ID numbers to settle down, lower sensitivity and practice consistent coil control. The target number will often vary depending on how well the target is centered and how fast the coil moves. Higher sensitivity settings lead to jumpier numbers as the detectors become less stable at higher levels. The interference from the ground signal increases and interference from outside electrical sources also increases, leading to less stable numbers. Higher frequency detectors are inherently more sensitive and are jumpier. So lean lower frequency for more solid results. Multi frequency detectors act like low frequency detectors and tend to have more solid target numbers due to the ability to analyze a target with different frequencies. Another issue is the number of target categories, or ID segments, or VDIs, or notches, or bins (all names for the same thing) that a detector offers. For instance here are the number of possible target id categories or segments each detector below offers: Fisher CZ-3D = 7 Garrett Ace 250 = 12 Minelab X-Terra 305 = 12 Minelab X-Terra 505 = 19 Minelab X-Terra 705 = 28 Minelab Equinox = 50 Fisher F75 (and many other models) = 99 White's MXT (and many other models) = 190 Minelab CTX 3030 = 1750 Fewer target categories means more possible items get lumped together under a single reading, but that the reading is more stable. Many detectors will tell you the difference between a dime and a quarter. The Fisher CZ assumes you want to dig both so puts them under one segment along with most other coins. People who use detectors with many target numbers usually just watch the numbers jump around and mentally average the results. Some high end detectors can actually do this averaging for you! But I think there is something to be said for owning a detector that simplifies things and offers less possible numbers to start with. The old Fisher CZ method still appeals to me, especially for coin detecting. So do detectors like the Garrett Ace 250 or Minelab X-Terra 505 for the same reason. The problem is that as people strive to dig deeper targets or smaller targets the numbers will always get less reliable. But if you want to have a quiet performing metal detecting with solid, reliable target numbers look more for coin type detectors running at lower frequencies under 10 kHz or at multiple frequencies and possibly consider getting a detector with fewer possible target segments. And with any detector no matter what just back that sensitivity setting off and you will get more reliable target numbers. ads by Amazon... Detectors often use tones to identify targets and often use far fewer tones than indicated by the possible visual target id numbers. The X-Terra 705 for instance can use 28 tones, one for each segment. However, most people find this too busy, and so simple tone schemes of two, three, or four tones may be selected. I think it is instructive that many people often end up ignoring screen readings and hunting by ear, using just a few tones. This ends up just being an ultra simple target id system much like the simpler units offer. Reality is that most people do not need or care about huge numbers of target numbers. For many just three ranges suffice, low tone for iron, mid tone for most gold items, and high tone for most US coins. The meter could do the same thing, but for marketing purposes more is better and so we get sold on detectors with hundreds of possible target ID numbers. Perhaps that represents a digital representation of an old analog meter with its nearly infinite range of response but the reality is we do not need that level of differentiation to make a simple dig or no dig decision. Finally, a picture often says it all. Below we have a shot of the White's M6 meter. I like it because the decal below illustrates a lot. You see the possible numerical range of -95 to 95 laid out in the middle. Over it is the simplified iron/gold/silver range. Note the slants where they overlap to indicate the readings really do overlap. Then you get the probable target icons. -95 is noted as "hot rock" because many do read there. The M6 can generate 7 tones depending on the target category. I have added red lines to the image to show where these tones sit in relation to the scale. It breaks down as follows: -95 = 57 Hz (Very Low) Hot Rock -94 to -6 = 128 Hz (Low) Iron Junk -5 to 7 = 145 Hz (Med Low) Gold Earrings, Chains - Foil 8 to 26 = 182 Hz (Medium) Women's Gold Rings/Nickel - Small Pull Tabs 27 to 49 = 259 Hz (Med Hi) Men's Gold Rings - Large Pull Tabs 50 to 70 = 411 Hz (High) Zinc Penny/Indian Head Penny - Screw Caps 71 to 95 = 900 Hz (Very High) Copper Penny/Dime/Quarter/Dollar Note that the screen reading of +14 is noted as being a nickel or ring but it can also be the "beaver tail" part of an aluminum pull tab or the aluminum ring that holds an eraser on a pencil, among other things. The best book ever written on the subject of discrimination is "Taking A Closer Look At Metal Detector Discrimination" by Robert C. Brockett. It is out of print but if you find a copy grab it, assuming the topic interests you. Always remember - when in doubt, dig it out! Your eyes are the best target ID method available.
  10. More Equinox data. On another forum the detector’s ground tracking circuit was mentioned. I had made some comments about this early on when my Equinox arrived. So I will share some data here. This particular data here is using the small 6” coil. I will do 11”stocker to make sure there are no large differences. Anyway Equinox tracking circuit SLOW compared to some other detectors. For my testing over clean ground (area) I obtained a pumping ground balance using Nox using park 2 and multi freq. Speed 6 iron bias 0. Even did a noise cancel. I intentionally dialed GB 10 points high. Ground read 38 so dialed to 48 manually, Turned tracking on and started the stop watch. Sweeps were speed wise a rate a medium speed with coil close to ground just like if Inwere detecting. It took Equinox a full 6 minutes and 30 seconds to finally track to a ground reading of 38. I got curious and went to same settings above except 15 kHz single freq ops. Again dialed GB to 48 turned on tracking and started the stop watch, Seemed Equinox beat the tracking time here vs using Multi by approximately 2 minutes around 4 minutes and 30 seconds. So what about Deus and the new X35 9” coil? I did the same experiment above as I did with Equinox and small coil. Deus would track to actual ground phase in under 4 seconds. I even dialed Deus 20 points over actual ground setting and detector was tracked to actual ground in under 6 seconds. What about Nokta Anfibio while wearing 7”concentric coil? Maybe Dilek won’t fire me. Lol It acts very Deus like. Doing the same experiment Anfbio wastes no time tracking to actual ground phase. With detector dialed 10 points high it would track in while sweeping in less than 4 seconds. I disn’t try dialing it 20 points high as I was very satisfied. I am wondering why is Equinox so slow. As a side note , I even dialed Equinox 10 points over and tried pumping coil to see if it would speed tracking up some. I disn’t see anything based on my tests that indicates it helps at all. I also dialed Equinox just 2 points high and timed it. After one full minute of constant sweeping the detector still hadn’t tracked to actual ground reading achieved when sweeping coil. Thought I would share. Minelab Equinox vs XP Deus X35 vs Nokta Anfibio
  11. rled2005

    Detecting 365

    Has anyone read the review on Equinox 800 at detecting365.com website? Nothing good to say about the Equinox. http://detecting365.com/honest-review-minelab-equinox-800-warning/
  12. This is a quick comparison of 14 khz waterproof single frequency metal detectors. 13 - 15 khz has proven to be an excellent frequency range for all around metal detecting. For those seeking bang for the buck in a single frequency metal detector these models offer excellent performance at affordable prices. Click on chart for larger version. 14 kHz single frequency waterproof metal detectors compared To see other frequencies compared go here Makro Kruzer, White's MX Sport, Nokta Anfibio, Garrett AT Max
  13. The following is a compilation from my Rutus testing and useage. Very long, but anyone wanting some info, this here may help folks. Btw to my knowledge currently no dealers for this detector line in USA. They can be purchased from abroad. The Rutus Alter 71 may not be very well known, but make no mistake a very good detector for what they cost. There is some comparison info too with other detector models. Enjoy Overall weight and feel of unit is IMO nice,,not heavy feeling. Both coils. Btw. Concentric measures 8.125" outside to outside diameter. Supposed 11" dd measures 11". I even with little time I have run this unit,,this unit designed to be a Deus killer for the $$$. Question is, is it?? Using concentric coil user likely not to dig steel bottle caps, hodograph paints a good pic of junk target,,a backwards C in the meter. Haven't tried DD coil yet to see what happens here. Depth is dependent on mask setting,,meaning for fringe depth the lower the better. Interesting how they gave a user options here to have their targets ID in the meter. Three choices real-- ID is directly reflective of frequency run and conductivity of target. Then 2 other options,,you can select either 6khz or 12khz for target ID normalization. So with saying all this here is some data using each of the above selections for target ID. I should say the Rutus uses a different scale when comparing to most other detectors-- 0-120. Some data Real ID option selected and frequency selected on detector at max 18.4khz Nickel....79 Clad dime..110 Zincoln penny..103 Copper penny..110 Clad quarter..114 Normalized setting of 6khz selected,,detector still set to 18.4khz Nickel..52 Clad dime..94 Zincoln penny..80 Copper penny..94 Clad quarter..105 Normalized setting of 12kh selected,,detector still set to 18.4khz Nickel..66 Clad dime..105 Zincoln penny..95 Copper penny..105 Clad quarter..112 Frequency changed on detector to 7khz,,real ID option selected Nickel..55 Clad dime..99 Zincoln penny..86 Copper penny..99 Clad quarter..107 Frequency still at 7khz,,6khz normalization selected Nickle..54 Clad dime..98 zincoln penny..85 Copper penny..98 Clad quarter..107 Frequency still at 7khz,,12 khz normalization selected Nickel..68 Clad dime..108 zincoln penny..99 Copper penny..107 Clad quarter..112 Preliminary test using 3D test with coin and nails,,detector seems above average with what I see,,,Deus like results,,,not giving either detector yet no advantage,,with time maybe. Audio,,,Rutus audio not as smooth as Xp Deus,,not as blendy sounding,,leans more toward what I call beeps. This is not meant to say Rutus audio is terrible or anything. I am still trying to nail down how I want my tones set up using the user programs,,,not there yet. Does take time though,,user must select each number TID wise and singularly adjust,,,no blocking of groups of tones to adjust. I do reserve the right here to correct anything I say about this detector in the future. From what I can tell right now,,Rutus will retain settings when turned off. Turn back on,,user will need to ground balance though. Also what ever you have selected,,this is where the cursor will be when you go back in and open menu-- not sure if this happens if you turn detector off though. Now,,here is where other manufacturers like White's should be paying attention,,Xp as well. I have read countless Internet forum threads and post associated with just when does the White's V3i and even the Vx3 model need to be ground balanced. Rutus depending on what you change setting wise will give you ground balance prompt. This is exactly what White's should have done on the 2 models I mention here. Xp Deus,,you change freqs,,ground balance doesn't carry over,,should be a prompt.. Now detector companies,,if they do this for future models,,,they could offer a way to override the prompt,,so it doesn't appear in screen. This might be more handy for someone say who is more experience with the detector in question. Emi,,this detector ranks right up there as being one of the quietest I have run for Vlf,,,even runs as quiet IMO as CTX and etrac,,and DST Fisher units. Now this from judging in 2 different places with loads of light wires,,and a few transformers. I should also say,,this concentric coil I received with Rutus is the very first one I have ever owned,,I did run a gents White's XLT with concentric some 6 years ago for around 15 minutes. Navigating around using Rutus is different,,but not hard,,just gotta get used to it. Unit seems to ground balance nicely here in my soil. More to come.
  14. Steve Herschbach

    Makro Gold Kruzer Review

    The following is a very detailed review of the new Makro Gold Kruzer... but first a little back story. I was asked to review a new gold detector in the fall of 2014 from a company I had never heard of before then – the FORS Gold by the Nokta company based in Istanbul, Turkey. I was pleasantly surprised to find the Nokta FORS Gold to be a very capable 15 kHz VLF detector that could serve well not just for nugget detecting, but almost any detecting tasks. The FORS Gold did have some odd design quirks, like the use of mechanical rocker switches instead of touch pads. I listed a few of these things, expecting that would just be the way it is. I was almost shocked when within a short period of time Nokta fixed or changed every item I had mentioned in my review as possibly needing improvement. This was unusual as normally once a machine has gone into production manufacturers are extremely resistant to design changes, especially changes in the physical design. It was a sign of what people have now found to be fact – that this company is serious about listening to their customers as a prime driver for product improvement. New Makro Gold Kruzer It was revealed that Nokta had a sister company called Makro, and the two officially combined forces shortly after I made my review. In other words, both Nokta and Makro now share the same ownership and management, but continue to be marketed separately under the two brand names. The detector models that each sell are unique, but there is an obvious sharing of the underlying technology between some models that the two brands sell. I had commented at the time that I would prefer a more standard configuration for a LCD based detector rather than the non-standard configuration as presented by the FORS Gold. By the fall of 2015 I was using the new Makro Gold Racer, which incorporated many ideas I had lobbied for over the years with detector manufacturers. I had been trying for some time to get somebody to create a metal detector that ran at nugget detecting type frequencies over 30 kHz but with a full target id system. It seems strange now but at that time nobody made such a detector. The Makro Gold Racer was quite unique in 2015 by offering a detector running at 56 kHz that also offered a full range LCD based target id system and dual tone based audio discrimination modes. This made it a detector useful not just for nugget detecting, but low conductor hunting in general for relics and jewelry. It is even a halfway decent coin detector for regular park type scenarios. The versatility and well thought out control scheme scored points with me, and I still have the Makro Gold Racer even after selling most of my other detectors. It seems that the moment the Makro Gold Racer hit the streets, that everyone else was working on similar ideas, as other detectors running over 30 kHz but with a full feature set started to appear on the market. High frequency detecting is suddenly in vogue for more than just gold nugget detecting. The one thing obvious now about the Makro / Nokta partnership is that they never sit still, but continue to work on and release new models at a pace that puts all the other manufacturers to shame. The companies are also big believers in seeking public feedback and then implementing the suggestions to create better products for their customers. This is readily apparent in the progression I have personally witnessed in going from that original Nokta FORS Gold to the new 61 kHz Makro Gold Kruzer just now hitting the market. In less than four years the company has gone from “catching up” to meeting or surpassing detectors made by other companies. The Makro Gold Kruzer has a full suite of functions, is fully waterproof, incorporates built in wireless headphone capability, and can be firmware updated over the internet. That short feature list alone puts the Makro Gold Racer in a very select group of detectors offering those same 21st century “basic features” that were lacking in almost all detectors made in the last century. The Makro Gold Kruzer obviously builds on the Gold Racer feature set with the following key differences. The Gold Racer runs at 56 kHz and the Gold Kruzer at 61 kHz, one of the highest frequencies available in consumer metal detectors. This continues the focus on detecting small low conductor targets. The Gold Kruzer is waterproof to 5 meters (16.4 feet) whereas the Gold Racer is not waterproof at all. Finally, the Gold Kruzer adds a three tone hunt mode, taking things up another step from the dual tone modes available on the Gold Racer. Now let’s look at the Makro Gold Kruzer in detail. Makro switched things up in that the Gold Kruzer comes with two coils, a 5.5” x 10” concentric coil, and a 4” x 7.5” DD coil; both include scuff covers. The 5.5” x 10” concentric coil, which was an option offered for the Gold Racer, has been redesigned and cut from 1” thick to ¾” thick and the weight reduced to 384 grams (13.5 oz). The coil is hollow and therefore slightly buoyant, so the 25% reduction in thickness is quite welcome in reducing that buoyancy to where it is basically unnoticeable underwater. The little 4” x 7.5” DD coil is a solid epoxy filled coil which works extremely well in smaller coils where epoxy filling does not result in too much weight. The small DD coil weighs 368 grams or 13.0 oz. There is one accessory coil available at this time, a 5” x 9.5” epoxy filled DD. This coil weighs 14.3 oz or 404 grams. It should be noted that because of the frequency change and with the Gold Kruzer using waterproof connectors, that Makro Gold Racer coils will not work on the Gold Kruzer. Makro has also learned lessons as regards coil ear durability. The coil ears on the Gold Kruzer are about twice the mass of those on my older Makro Gold Racer. Taller, wider, and thicker – these extra beefy coil ears should all but eliminate breakage issues. 4” x 7.5” DD coil showing beefed up ears The Makro Gold Kruzer employs a fairly standard “detector pod on an S rod” design forgoing the underarm battery box used on the Gold Racer. This confers a large advantage when it comes to waterproofing the detector in that only the pod has to be sealed. The change from AA batteries to a built in sealed LiPO rechargeable battery also aids in eliminating battery doors, which are always at risk of leaking. The three piece S rod itself is quite stout with no flex or wiggle. The cross hatch carbon fiber lower rod is not only strong, but lends an air of high tech quality to the look of the detector. The Gold Kruzer does not have the separate underarm battery compartment and in handle vibration mechanism featured on the Makro Gold Racer. This means the pod is totally self contained and can be removed from the handle assembly. This in turn allows for other rod options and the ability to break the detector completely down fitting in a small backpack or carry on bag. When the stout rod is combined with the beefed up coil construction you have a design that should survive those spills a person can take when working in the surf and there the detector ends up acting like a walking stick for support. It has been interesting to watch the company experiment with different handle designs. It is a thankless task because you never can please everyone. For me at least the handle / rod may be the best yet from Makro, with a molded hard rubber grip that will serve very well for a detector that may see underwater use. I personally found the Nokta Impact handle to be large for my hands and the smaller Gold Kruzer handle near perfect. Others may feel just the opposite so there you go. The arm cuff is a little different. It is narrower than some – good for me but maybe not so much for somebody with huge forearms. The adjustment is non-standard, with the arm cup sliding up and down the upper rod over a set of threaded holes. A small screw inserted into the top of the armrest and into one of these threaded holes secures the armrest in place. Kruzer upper rod showing cuff adjust holes and hand grip (control box removed) A unique feature on the Gold Kruzer is an optional external AA battery pack that can provide extra operating time in the field should the internal rechargeable battery go dead. The pack is designed to be held into the bottom of the detector armrest / stand by a separate plastic cover bracket that is held in place with two screws. I found the holes these screws go into will fill with sand if this bracket is left off, so I advise installing the bracket even if the external battery pack is not in use. The external battery pack with bracket is an option and so dummy screws or plugs should be installed to keep the screw holes clean and free of debris by those who down not have the bracket. I don’t think most people will ever need the external battery pack as long as the detector is regularly charged after use. It is a very nice touch however, especially for off grid use, as all you need is the external AA battery pack and a box of AA batteries to off grid for as long as the batteries will last. Some people may want the optional battery pack for travel into the field just in case the battery runs short on power in the middle of a hunt. The port where you attach the external battery pack also acts as a port to attach a USB style charger cable. The detector is charged using this cable by employing the included USB wall charger. You may also use most USB charging adapters and newer computer USB ports. The USB cable also allows the Makro Gold Kruzer to be attached to a computer so that updates can be made in case any bugs are found in the future. This update feature is very nice insurance that should be standard on all new detectors. Another item that should be standard on all new detectors is built in wireless headphone capability. Makro uses a proprietary low latency system that exhibits no discernible lag at all. A really nice thing about being proprietary is there is no pairing process. All you have to do is enable the wireless feature on the control box, turn on the headphones, and boom, you are in business. The downside is you only have one choice of headphones – the included Makro wireless headphones. These are a nice, light set of phones but they are just a bit too small to fit over most people ears. I have fairly small ears and they still rest on instead of over my ear. The sound quality is good, but like most wireless headphones they seem less “bright” than wired headphones. All in all the wireless headphones are quite good however and a pleasure to use. Makro wireless headphones The Makro Gold Kruzer does have a waterproof speaker with decent volume that can be used instead of the wireless headphones. If you prefer other headphone options, be sure and get the optional waterproof port to ¼” headphone adapter cable. This cable attaches to the same port used for charging and software updates and allows any wired headphones to be adapted to the Gold Kruzer. The LCD display is well laid out with a very large target id number displayed. The other setting indicators might be a little harder for those with poor eyesight to make out, but should present no issues once the layout is learned. One big change from the Gold Racer is that the four large navigation buttons, trigger switch, and rotary dial power / volume switch have all been replaced by ten small buttons on the control panel. All the buttons can be reached and controlled by the operators thumb, but the small size and closeness of the buttons may make for some navigation errors early on, and especially when trying to change settings underwater or with gloves on. Makro Gold Kruzer display and controls The Makro Gold Kruzer User Manual is available for download so I will refer you there for all the little details. What you have in the Makro Gold Kruzer is a hot 61 kHz metal detector waterproof to 5 meters (16.4 feet). The Gen (General) mode is a fairly standard VCO audio all metal gold nugget detecting circuit. The Gold Kruzer in Gen mode is very reminiscent of other hot gold nugget detectors running in the all metal prospecting mode. The Gen mode acts exactly like one would expect a threshold based all metal mode to function. There is a nice smooth threshold that gives feedback about the ground and reacts to hot rocks with classic nulling signals and small nuggets with that classic “zip-zip” VCO audio. Voltage Controlled Oscillator (VCO) audio increases both in volume and pitch when a target is detected, giving a distinct response very common on many gold detectors. The only thing different here is that since the Gold Kruzer has an LCD readout; you can get target id number results while running in all metal Gen mode. The audio is far more sensitive than the meter however, so do not be surprised if the deepest and smallest of targets give no target id information. In a break with the Gold Racer the Fast and Boost modes are not dual tone modes, but instead are silent search (no threshold) single tone modes. Items either signal audibly or not based on the current discrimination settings. The discrimination setting, like that of the Gold Racer, is a simple up and down control. Everything above the setting gives an audio signal of “beep”. Anything below the discrimination setting level is rejected or ignored with no sound at all. The Gold Kruzer has no notching capability i.e. the ability to pick and choose individual target id numbers for rejection. Fast mode is just what it sounds like – a fast setting for working in really dense trash. Target recovery speed has been increased at the expense of outright depth, but sheer depth is useless where target masking is the main problem. Boost mode is exactly the opposite. Boost is the deepest discrimination mode on the Gold Kruzer but due to the increased sensitivity is more suitable for less mineralized ground and sparser targets. It should be obvious that the Makro Gold Kruzer is all about gold. This explains the shift from dual tone to monotone audio in the Fast and Boost. Dual tones as employed in the Makro Gold Kruzer can be problematic when hunting the smallest gold targets, especially in highly mineralized ground. It is hard for a detector to get a clean separation of ferrous and non-ferrous targets when the targets are very small. This is because the actual dividing line between ferrous and non-ferrous is not a line at all, but a zone. The Makro Gold Kruzer uses a fairly standard discrimination scale that ranges from 0 – 99. The range from 0 – 40 is considered to be the ferrous range, and 41 and above non-ferrous. Yet the discrimination default for both the Fast and Boost modes is 25. This is because if you bury small gold in highly mineralized ground or large gold extra deep in mineralized ground, the ferrous ground signal can overwhelm the very weak non-ferrous signal. It really is not about the object size. A deep large nugget is a very weak signal just the same as a shallower small nugget, and either can end up reading as a ferrous target. The solution is to lower the discrimination setting into the ferrous range and accept that you have to dig some ferrous items to get all the gold items. This actually applies to any metal detecting. If you dig absolutely no ferrous trash, you are almost 100% guaranteed to be passing up some non-ferrous items reading incorrectly as ferrous. This can be acceptable of course depending on what you are doing, but passing on a deep six ounce gold nugget because it reads ferrous can be an expensive mistake. The Gold Kruzer default discrimination setting for Fast and Boost is 25 instead of 40 for this very reason. Dual tones have issues for this same reason, with decisive results on the weakest targets difficult if not impossible to obtain. The difference is quite small, but monotone is slightly more stable and proficient at working with the tiniest and faintest of signals right at the dividing line between ferrous and non-ferrous, wherever you have set the control to tell the Gold Kruzer where that line is for your particular situation. There is no pat answer as the where to set the discrimination control. It is a judgment call based on experience, but when in doubt, use less discrimination and dig more trash. Welcome to gold detecting! Makro chart showing gold occurring in 0 – 40 ferrous range The Makro Gold Kruzer has a new control that relates to this overlap between ferrous and non-ferrous readings. The Extra Underground Depth (E.U.D.) control acts to directly impact the tipping point between ferrous and non-ferrous readings. The E.U.D. control only works in one of the three discrimination modes and when used on a suspect target that is reading ferrous may reveal by a different tone that it is actually non-ferrous. It is noted in the manual that it can reveal some targets misidentified as ferrous, but it will also give more false positives on ferrous targets. I was unable in the time allowed to figure out just how efficient this control is. In theory you can just set the discrimination lower, digging more ferrous but getting those missed non-ferrous items. Or set the discrimination a little higher, and now examine suspect targets individually by engaging the E.U.D. control momentarily. Finally, you can run E.U.D. on at all times. Is higher disc with E.U.D. on at all times going to get better results than just using a lower discrimination setting? Sadly, I just do not know at this time. I do know it is no magic bullet so the efficiency of employing the E.U.D. control will have to be determined over time by users around the world What? You say you wanted tones? Well, the Makro Gold Kruzer has you covered. The new Micro mode is a three tone mode similar to that on other company models, but running at that hot 61 khz. The 0 – 40 target id range produces a low tone. The 41 – 66 range produces a medium tone, and 67 – 99 range a high tone. Micro mode allows the “ferrous break point” to be adjusted. This is that magic point where you decide what is going to read as ferrous and what reads as non-ferrous. Note that unlike the Fast and Boost modes, the default ferrous breakpoint is set at 40 instead of 25. This is good for coin type detecting but again may be too high for other types of detecting. While in Micro mode you may use the Tone Break control to vary this all important setting. You could mimic the other two modes by setting the Tone Break at 25. Now 0 – 25 will be a low tone, 26 – 66 a medium tone, and 67 – 99 a high tone. Tone Break can only be used to set the ferrous breakpoint. The upper high tone region of 67 – 99 is preset and fixed by the factory with no adjustment possible. You may use the Ferrous Volume setting to control how loud the low tone response is. The medium and high tone responses are set with the main volume control. The discrimination control still functions in Micro mode, with a default setting of ten. Hot rocks and ground responses occur this low on the scale, and so having at least some of the low end blocked or rejected with reduce the number of low tone responses generated by the ground itself. The control can be set as high as you want and will override the other settings, blocking all targets below the desired target id setting. The Makro Gold Kruzer does have a tone control, but it does not allow the tones to be changed in Micro mode. Those are factory preset, with the Tone Break between ferrous and non-ferrous plus Ferrous Volume as the two adjustments you can make. The Tone setting allows the tone of the audio response and threshold to be changed in Gen, Fast, and Boost modes only. Micro was designed first for hunting micro jewelry. Micro jewelry is a loose term that applies to all very small jewelry items, like very thin chains, single post earrings, tie tacks, etc. Micro is perfect for hunting tot lots and beaches and focusing on the “gold range” targets represented by the mid tone reading in Micro mode. Many jewelry hunters consider digging coins a waste of time, and so ignoring high tones can save digging pocket change when the real goal is a woman’s diamond and platinum ring. The Makro Gold Kruzer has a nominal non-ferrous range of 41 – 99 which is a 59 point spread. Normal U.S. coin responses are 63 for a nickel, 83 for a zinc penny, 84 for a copper penny, 86 for a clad dime, and 91 for a clad quarter. The high 61 kHz operating frequency acts to push target id numbers higher and most coins will respond at 83 and higher. I was surprised a zinc penny and copper penny for all intents read the same. The good news is the low conductor range is expanded, which offers the ability to help discern different pull tabs and other trash items over a wider range. This in turn may help eliminate at least a few pesky trash items while hunting gold, although ignoring gold range items of any sort can be risky. Still, with a U.S. nickel reading at 63 and most women’s rings reading under the nickel, you get the 40 – 63 zone as a 23 point range where much of the most valuable jewelry will turn up. The default high tone breakpoint of 66 – 67 is clearly focusing the Gold Kruzer mid-tone on this very important gold range. Do note that large men’s rings and nearly all larger silver jewelry will read above 66 and therefore give a high tone reading. The Gold Kruzer has some obvious applications but there are a couple catches. First, it is running at 61 kHz, which means it is very hot on low conductors, but that it will have just adequate performance on high conductors like silver coins. Second, its extreme sensitivity to low conductors means it will not work well if at all in saltwater or on wet salt sand. Saltwater is a low conductor and will respond quite strongly on the Gold Kruzer, and getting it to not respond to saltwater gives up all the sensitivity to small gold. The Gold Kruzer will work very well around freshwater or on dry sand, it is not intended as a detector for use in or near saltwater. I would suggest the new Makro Multi Kruzer as an alternative to those who want to hunt in and around saltwater on a regular basis. Makro Gold Kruzer with optional 5” x 9.5” DD coil There are many features I could delve into but at over six pages this report is getting long, so I will again refer people to the User Manual for the details. Suffice it to say that the Makro Gold Kruzer has a full set of features like frequency shift for reducing interference, temporary audio boost for the Gen all metal mode, adjustable backlight, and the ability to save settings when the detector is powered down, and more. I got the Gold Kruzer prototype during a period when I was quite busy and the weather was not helping. I did have time to do a few tot lot hunts plus make a trip to the goldfields to evaluate the machine. The Gold Kruzer is well behaved in urban locations, with only a little static from electrical interference sources. I found the new Micro mode to be just the ticket for quickly blasting through a tot lot recovering prime gold range targets. I dug everything as is my practice when learning a detector, and ended up with the usual pile of aluminum foil, junk jewelry, and coins. Nothing special found but no doubt in my mind that the Gold Kruzer acts as intended in this type of setting. There were no surprises in the goldfields. At 61 kHz and in Gen mode the Gold Kruzer is a real pleasure to run, with all the response and nuance one expects from a great threshold based all metal circuit. Boost Mode also works very well as an alternative for small nugget detecting. I had no problem at all finding a couple little bits of gold weighing under a grain (480 grains per Troy ounce) on my first and only nugget hunt so far with the Gold Kruzer. Two tiny gold nuggets found with Makro Gold Kruzer To sum up, the new Makro Gold Kruzer once again ups the ante at Makro. It comes standard with two coils and is fully waterproof for about the same price as the Makro Gold Racer so I would have to assume the Gold Racers days are numbered. The one thing I am not sure about at this time is that the Gold Racer has a 15” x 13” DD coil option. The Makro Multi Kruzer has the 15” coil option, but no such accessory has yet been announced for the Gold Kruzer. This is probably not a concern for very many people, but it bears mentioning. I have no problem at all recommending that anyone interested in a detector with a focus on gold take a very serious look at the new Makro Gold Kruzer. It’s performance on low conductors of any type means that the Gold Kruzer is not just for prospectors and jewelry hunters but may also see favor with some relic hunters who focus of low conductor targets like buttons and bullets. This is a solid detector with 21st century features at a very attractive price. Makro Gold Kruzer Information Page Makro Kruzer Color Brochure Download a pdf copy of this report Steve Herschbach DetectorProspector.com
  15. Tried out a new detector on Saturday:Due to some unavoidable delays, I finally made it out with my Makro Gold Racer on the weekend to see what it could do.I don't know about where you live, but winter here just didn't want to let go this year. I mean, we had one of the coldest, longest winters we've had in forever, and snow, snow, snow (we're about four feet over the average mountain snowpack at the higher elevations as I write), but Old Man Winter finally took a breather, and so I got a chance to head to the mountains to swing the coil again.The place I picked was one that didn't have a lot of exposed bedrock, just a small section really, with the rest of the ground covered with six to eight feet of overburden on top of the bedrock, and that's just too much overburden for the size of gold I commonly find.As for the weather that day, it was a true mixed bag. I mean this time of year, we can get all four seasons in one day! Saturday was no exception. It rained early in the morning, then the sun came out and it was nice and warm, then it clouded over, started to rain again, then turned to snow, then the wind blew a cold blast of air for about an hour, then the sky turned blue and the sun came out once more, the wind stopped, and the weather did its best spring imitation for the next three hours.I unlimbered the Gold Bug Pro first, and you can't make this stuff up, within three minutes, I'd found a three gram nugget, one my wife said looked sort of like a four-leaf clover. And, Nature indeed had made it look kind of like one. The nugget was sitting in some tough clay that held a lot of former river stones, so it seemed to me that it was likely what used to be the bottom of a crevice long ago, as the surrounding bedrock had been cut down at least a couple of feet by the former placer miners whose actions would have left the sort of deposit I've described.I kept working the exposed bedrock and any places I could find where bedrock had been tossed out in case some gold had ridden out with it. (I have found nuggets this way before.) I really took my time and went slow, because I wanted to be sure I'd cleaned the area before I broke out the Gold Racer so I'd have as accurate a comparison as I could. By the time I'd finished with the Fisher, I'd gathered another gram and a half of small stuff that I'd thrown in the bottle.My wife had wandered off, and I found her panning near the foot of channel wall, but she wasn't having much luck; however, she pointed out something to me that I'd have completely missed. To the north and east of where she'd been panning, there was a short section left of what had been a bedrock drain, and there were small sections of bedrock still exposed that the boulder clay hadn't reclaimed.Nevertheless, I headed back to the original bedrock I'd worked with the Gold Bug Pro, and I broke out the shiny new Makro Gold Racer. The ground balance worked flawlessly, and setting the sensitivity was a breeze. The ground was moderate to a little hot, so I didn't have to worry about adjusting the ISAT, and I was pretty familiar with the types of hot-rocks I'd likely find, so I knew most, if not all, of them by sight. I started by running the coil slowly over the areas I'd hit with the Bug Pro, and after a few sweeps, I had several quiet but distinct signals. When I dug down, the signals got louder. I called by wife over, and she took the dirt with the signals and panned them out. Neither one of us could believe the tiny gold in the pan! The Gold Racer really did deliver on finding small gold. However, the first bedrock area was not where I realized how good the Gold Racer could perform.Remember I mentioned the bedrock drain? I headed over to it with both detectors. First, I scanned the small exposed areas exceptionally carefully with the Bug Pro, and I got a few small pieces, then I ramped up the sensitivity on the machine as far as I could, fought the background chatter, and all in all, liberated about half a gram of gold from the bedrock. I swapped out the Bug Pro for the Gold Racer and covered the same areas again. Almost immediately I had a signal. I couldn't believe it, but the signal was clear, and I could see a previous dig mark where I'd nailed some small stuff with the Bug Pro, and the Racer was giving a crisp signal, quite unmistakable, right in the same dig hole! To make a long story short, three inches of bedrock later, a nice picker was in the bottle! This blew me away, as the Gold Racer had found the target while running nice and quiet, with the sensitivity not ramped up, yet the signal was very clear.I kept at the small sections of bedrock, and kept getting quiet, but clear, signals until I'd added another gram and a half of small gold to the vial. (Sometimes I'd get a break in the threshold too, but when I dug down, the signal either disappeared or it turned out to be a target. [Some heavy iron deposits in the bedrock did give a weak signal, but I soon learned that due to the broad nature of their signature exactly what they were.]) What this weekend's outing made me realize is that if I'd have given the Gold Racer a run the end of last summer, I'd have undoubtedly recovered a lot of small gold, and I do mean a lot, that the Bug Pro just couldn't see (this test was carried out with virtually the same coil sizes on both machines, elliptical shapes and DD's as well), and knowing now what I likely left behind last summer makes me a bit sad. (Out of six grams of gold for the Saturday, a gram and a half was fine stuff from the Gold Racer, and that's a pretty good added portion of gold recovery I'd say.) In fairness to the Gold Bug Pro, let me say this: I've found lots and lots of gold with that great little machine, and it's super easy to learn how to use making for a quick learning curve. In addition, I don't have an unkind word to say about the Fisher as it's paid for itself many, many times over, and I will continue to use it, and I'll continue to train others how to use it as well. Moreover, let me say that the Bug Pro doesn't run at nearly as high a kHz, so it's unfair to compare apples to oranges that way, but I wanted to see what I was leaving behind, that's all. So, I learned my lesson well on Saturday, and I gained a whole lot of respect for the little Gold Racer for how sensitive it is to small gold, how good it punches into the ground to find it, and how quietly it goes about its job of doing so. Furthermore, The Makro is a great little gold machine I can swing all day long, and I'm looking forward to really taking it for a long, dedicated run this summer to add more gold to the poke because it sure gets the job done in style! (How I wish some fine company would produce a light-weight gold-hungry pulse machine with excellent capabilities or that Minelab would find a way to lighten the technology package of their GPZ 7000. Wouldn't that be great?) (I'd like to thank Steve for pointing me in the direction of the Gold Racer, and I'd like to thank Dilek at Makro for her exceptional customer service.)All the best,Lanny
  16. I just got back from DIV 40 and wanted to give a quick report on how the Equinox 600 performed in the hot Culpeper soil. Mind you I am not proficient with the detector yet. In addition to the Equinox I took my GPX. I used the Equinox for a total of about 8 hours in the three days I was there. I did find some good stuff with the Equinox which included an Eagle coat button, minie ball and a New York coat button. For me I found that the Equinox ran quietest using the beach mode in five tones iron bias one and everything notched out up to 5. If not in the beach modes the machine was really chattery. It can accurately ID a Target to about 5 inches but has a real hard time with low conductors in that soil. With the adjustments the 800 offers you might get better results. At one point I buried a nickel at 6 inches in one of the fields and could not get it with the equinox, the GPX easily picked it up. Overall I thought the detector performed well and was very helpful in the iron infested areas. I know there were other Equinoxes there and some good stuff was found by those using them. I know of at least 1 breast plate found with the Equinox.
  17. Except for about 15 minutes in the back yard, Saturday's 4 1/2 hour hunt is my first experience with the new detector. I've decided (unless some chance I can't pass up comes along) to do several hunts in previously searched sites. I started with probably my easiest site that has produced old coins. I've described this previously -- a small lot the city acquired early last summer and promptly raized the 1920's house, but did a great job leaving most of the yard alone and just backfilling the house's footprint. Fairly certain I'm still the only person ever to metal detect this property. My notes show I've been here 7 times, mostly with the Fisher F75. With a few exceptions (more on that below) I've searched the entire area at least twice, and in some spots 3-4 times. Previously it's produced 50+ Wheaties and 5 silver coins. For the most part it's fairly clean in terms of iron trash, with more/less the usual amount of aluminum. Park 1 default was my plan for the day, including the default ground setting, mostly in 'all-metal'. Right off the truck I was having trouble with EMI. I forgot how to auto-adjust the frequency so I just went manual, 19 channels to choose from but none was perfectly quiet. Switched to other modes with qualitatively same result. I was getting the least noise at the extreme values (never good in the [-5,5] center region). Having also forgotten how to adjust gain (won't ever again!) I decided rather than walking back to my vehicle and consulting the operations manual I'd just try and hunt with the EMI noise in the background. That started out OK but by the end of 1.5 hours it was getting worse. Before reconfiguring I covered some previously hunted ground, finding mostly ring&beavertail pulltabs (at least 2/3 of the day's catch) one copper cent, one squeeze tube, a bronze threaded bushing, and a few other 'interesting' but non-valuables. Most of the non-pulltabs were along an alley where I had not previously searched. The penny was from a lightly searched spot as well. Turning down the gain to 17, the EMI noise disappeared so on to the next 2 hours. My next dig was the silver Roosie (1954), only about 3 inches deep. Then I hunted the part of the lot which had been used to dump/hide/burn trash. Amongst a lot of noise hits I got a decent high signal and 1 inch deep uncovered a copper penny. Next I found the nickel (1949-D), only about 4 inches deep. The ID was solid 12-13 in one direction but 90 degree angle-of-attack gave less steady values, 11's and even 10's. I guessed some kind of aluminum (slaw?) and was pleased to get the nickel. The last hour I moved to another part of the park (not on the house lot) where I (and others?) have hunted many times with multiple detectors, best find having been an Indian Head penny. I shifted to cherry-pick mode and dug a crown cap (not shown) which ID'ed steady near nickel. The badly corroded zinc read 18 (was hoping for another IH!). Two more coppers were 5 inch and 6 inches deep, sounding a bit iffy but giving repeated high conductivity ID's. One photo below shows the 'trash' -- ring&beavertails plus iron -- those latter were biproducts of digs which contained higher conductors, not mid/high tones by themselves. I did dig a bit of other trash not shown, including some aluminum bits of roof flashing, a total of 3 crown caps plus of couple pieces of aluminum foil. The 'goodies' photo didn't come up so well, but four of the five copper pennies are Wheats (1925, 1945-D, 1952-D, 1954-D). The top row in that photo all read in the 23-25 ID range. I don't know what that is in the lower left (jewelry?) -- it had an ID of 11. The bronze bushing hit at 32 and the copper ring thing (some kind of electrical connector??) signaled a solid, strong 33 -- I was hoping for a large coin . Why did I miss all of these mostly shallow targets previously? Likely a few I missed because I just didn't get the coil over them. However, that doesn't explain the full story. I may be a bit premature in my conclusion but I'm thinking superior target separation with the Eqx. And note all this running Park1 with a gain of 17. The other thing I noticed is that anything above 20 very likely is non-iron and worth digging, no iron wraparound or vertical nail high tones so far. Those theories will be strongly tested as I next move to trashier sites.
  18. Well, we finally got some decent beach conditions today so I could really try my 800 out on the sand. Five hours of pure beach detecting fun! And I feel like I have to say this, even if I get raked over the coals by my fellow PI Club members. My Equinox 800 goes practically as deep on the wet and dry sand as my Garrett Infinium. There, I said it. Shocked the hell outta me too. I say practically because I gave up digging stuff 2 feet down a while ago. It's almost always a big piece of crap anyway. That Equinox was locating stuff a foot down easily, with the added benefit of target ID. I started out digging everything so I could learn, but then found that I could eliminate some can slaw and bottle caps by using all metal mode. If I got an little iron grunt on the edge of the coil along with varying ID numbers and tones, it was trash every time. Every single time I got a 19 or 20, it was a rotten zincoln, so I started weeding those out too. I think when I start to really get to know my Equinox and learn it's quirks I'll be able to weed out lots more of the trash. The pull tabs are what they are and you just gotta dig 'em. I think that whoever invented those things should be tied to a chair and forced to watch every single "Oak Island" episode 10 times in a row. I had forgotten how fun it is to hunt the beach with a VLF! I just thought it was the price I had to pay to find anything on my barren beaches. I honestly think my Equinox got every good target that my Infinium would have gotten on depth, plus way more of the smaller shallow stuff the PI would have missed. I do have to crank the disc up to 2 to get it stable in salt water, so that might be the reason. Poor Infinium. I sure hope it finds some gold in Montana that its new sibling doesn't, 'cause Ammie has a new beach machine. I got about $2 in change, the "gold" pendant is plated crap, the token and the lighthouse thingy were junk too. It's always fun digging jewelry though. The marcasite ring is 925.
  19. I went out this morning to a hunted out sports field. I had hit this field hard with my E-Trac and even last week I was hunting there again with the E-Trac based on my theory that you never completely hunt a location out. I knew rain was coming so I knew I didn't have much time. Actually being my 1st time using the Equinox more than 2 minutes I was a bit confused with the different sounds and some light chatter. I went out in Park #1 and never changed a thing. After about 5 mins I hit a good target in the 20's and not knowing the different ID's of coins I did know most numbers in the 20's were good to dig. 1st target was a clad dime. The pin pointer was spot on. Then I hit a tab posing as a nickel with a solid #13. Then I hit 3 quarters from #26 - #30. Finally I had a solid #13 and was skeptical after digging a tab but it was a nickel and the next target was a nickel. All together I found $1.43 in clad in 45 mins before the rain came. I also found a spent cartridge. All together I only dug 3 signals posing as a coin. One was a can at 8", one copper strap and one rusty piece of iron that was the size of a 1/2" nut but it wasn't a nut and couldn't determine what it was. I feel confident the Equinox will live up to the all the hype about it over the last 7 months. This attached pic is very poor because I rarely use the camera on my phone. Tomorrow I will either go back to the location I was today because I barely scratched it or a hunted out soccer field. The rest of today will be reading posts on the forum and the users manual
  20. As I have mentioned in various posts, I was on an early pre-order list for the E800… and I will remain on that list until my E800 is available. Based on several of the threads and comments by Steve H. and others, when an E600 came available, I had to act, and I am glad I did. Mostly due to the fact that I would be GOING CRAZY reading about all the early experiences from those that were lucky enough to get an E800 in the first two shipment waves. Yes, there are things that I will utilize on the E800 when I finally receive my pre-ordered machine, but I don’t feel like I am leaving any detecting power on the table with the E600. I have had the E600 in my possession for 2 weeks now, and have had it out swinging every day. Some days only 45-60 minutes as my work and family schedule would allow, and other days longer hunts. I have tried to target a few locations that I know like the back of my hand… a few older sites, and a few newer sites, but all I know what to expect from the ground… this is the best way I can measure the performance of the Equinox. Compare it against my numerous experiences on the same ground I have swung the Etrac, CTX, Explorer SE Pro, Tesoro Vaquero and even to some extent the Garrett ATX PI. I am not exaggerating when I say that the Equinox performs as good or better at all these sites than any of the machines I have mentioned above. My settings journey started the same as most new Equinox owners… Stock settings. Park 1/Noise Cancel/Ground Balance/start swinging. Then check targets with AM, or in Park 2… toy with Field 1 and 2… even take a few swings with the beach mode just to hear how it sounds on a target. The Equinox is a feedback machine. It started providing me information almost immediately. Over the past two weeks, I have gravitated to mostly using Park 1 with sensitivity between 18-22 depending on the ground, 50 tones, recovery at 3 (which is maxed for the 600 and equivalent to 6 on the 800) and iron bias at 0. Before I move on, I want to thank some of the early testers for guiding me to these settings, and being open to sharing their testing and experiences with us on the forum and in PM… Steve H., TNSS, SteveG, Cabin Fever, Tometusns to name a few… but not to slight all who share their information through the forum threads. Shout out to all of you! Along with a pile of clad... and more nickels by ratio than I have every dug... and mostly running in the Park 1 settings above, I have been successful in pulling wheats from areas that dried up to me and my other detectors a year ago. One location, I pulled 1-3 wheats from a 25 yard square at an old park in 5 successive days. Then went back and popped a 9.5” Aluminum Washington State Tax Token. It sorts through trash and iron and it goes deep. I should also say I planted a quarter at 7” last spring in this same area as a test. I was not able to hit it with the Etrac, the Explorer gave me a squeaky iffy signal on it, the Vaquero hits it in super tuned all metal only, and the Equinox bangs on it in stock settings. My first extended hunt (2 hours) also gave me my first Equinox silver. At another old location around an old ballfield, I got a solid 14 ID, that I nearly passed on, thinking it was probably a pull tab… but the signal sounded round and smooth… so I turned around, pinpointed, and dug a 6” plug to find a silver war nickel. Last night, I found myself at a school near my house which was built in the 80’s but is a good testing ground for my detectors… with clad down to about 4 or 5”… but last night, I wanted to test out the 2 tone setting. I went into the advanced tones settings and move the tone break up to 19. 18 and below – low tone / 19 and above high tone. I then set out for the trashiest part of the field, just outside the front doors of the school in the playground next to the basketball court pad. All kinds of aluminum targets littered throughout. I usually avoid that area because of the machine gun chatter or nulling from my other machines. Last night, my first target was a clear as can be high tone surrounded by low tones, but easily identifiable. 24-27 on the id. 6” down amongst the trash… 1959 Rosie. Why a silver coin was in a modern school that was orchards before, I can only guess, but the Equinox found it. So, my first “my Equinox experience” post is two fold. 1) The Equinox is for real. I’m not the first to say that, and I won’t be the last. But I share that opinion with all the rest that have said it, and 2) The E600 is a sleeper machine with 90% of the features but 100% of the detecting power of the E800. There have been many great posts outlining the differences between the two machines which are must reads. More important to me than “is the E800 worth the extra $250”… (and honestly, I feel it is worth the additional money for the E800… at least for me), but is it worth waiting for the E800 to become available when you could probably be hunting with the E600 by this weekend… each of us will have a different answer to that… and not everyone is able or willing to buy both like I have committed to doing. But if I had made the choice for only one machine, and opted for the E600 and have it now, rather than waiting for the E800… I would have absolutely no regrets, knowing what I know now having used the E600 for the past 2 weeks. Tim.
  21. I put the official order to my preferred dealer my Equinox 800 on Monday, it arrived about midday today (Tuesday), I was expecting it Wednesday, I didn't realise his free shipping would be overnight shipping from 600 km's away to a Rural address. Very impressed by that. I just had to get one with all the great reports on them, especially from a couple of people I highly respect in the detecting world. I'm sure they know who they are. I had to run around the house trying to find every 2 amp usb phone charger I could as I suddenly had 3 usb devices I had to charge at once as I wanted to get straight out and use it. It's disappointing it doesn't come with a power adapter/usb charger with 3 ports, it surely wouldn't have cost Minelab much to include that. If you don't have a mobile phone usb charger or a computer, you're stuck charging it. Seems so weird to me they wouldn't include a power adapter with usb. I guess I have a small head as every headphones I've ever used have to be on their smallest size, my Minelab Koss UR30 headphones are a pretty loose fit even on their smallest. The GM1000 headphones fit OK but are complete rubbish. The headphones with the Equinox 800 are brilliant, love them and a perfect volume level for my hearing. It was quite windy tonight when I walked down to the river to do my detecting and the volume levels were perfect even with the strong wind noise. I had no trouble pairing the headphones up directly to the detector, and I'm pleased to see after a power off of the detector it pairs up straight away by itself to the headphones on the next power on. Also the headphones seem to turn themselves off if they get no signal for a while, handy as I'd always forget to turn them off. I didn't end up using the WM08 and just paired the headphones directly to the Equinox for true wireless headphones, now I've had that I could never go back to corded headphones. I believe the response time is quicker if you use the cord and WM08 but I felt no negative effects. I used the supplied little cloth to clean the screen before putting on the screen protector, but the little cloth left little bits of hair on the screen so the screen protector looks terrible with bubbles under it where the little hairs are, I would have been better off not trying to clean the screen before applying it. I hope dealers start to stock new screen protectors as I want one already I used one of the foreign language ones and cut it up to size and put one on my Gold Monster 1000. It went on nice and clean as I didn't use the damn cloth to clean its screen. On my walk down to the river I have to walk along under high voltage power lines from some nearby Windmills, and right next to the track I walk down is an electric fence to keep some cows in, the cows were there so I can only assume the electric fence was turned on, I wasn't game to touch it to find out but it usually would be on if the cows are in the paddock. I turned the Nox on and performed the Noise cancel while under the powerlines and the thing was completely unstable in Multi Frequency, tried all the different frequencies to see if it would settle down but not really, the closest to stable was on 20khz, What even made me think of trying different frequencies as a beginner was my T2 is rotten near the power lines, you cant use it, same with my Garrett Euroace, but my Gold Bug Pro with Nel Sharpshooter works perfectly fine right under them. It's 19Khz so I figured 20khz maybe decent, it was OK, a bit of falsing but not unusable, still no match for the GBP in high EMI areas. Once I got down to the river long away from the power lines and electric fences I turned the unit back on again, did my noise cancel and started detecting, the thing ran perfectly, no falsing and hitting on targets (although nothing of value) with solid stable VDI numbers, it's the first time with a detector I've felt confident I can mostly trust the VDI numbers as they were so stable. I cranked the sensitivity right up to max (25) and was in Park 1 mode, no other settings were messed with at this stage as I was just testing it out and there was no knock sensitivity at all, my coil control is that of a person who's drank a good 15 beers in about 10 minutes so I was bumping rocks all over the place, no issues at all with bump sensitivity, so I tried it in all the different modes to see if I could get this bump sensitivity issue, but no, it just doesn't exist in my local soil. I made the mistake of just taking my Lesche digging tool to dig my finds and was grossly unprepared, this wasn't a good idea with the Eq800 as the thing finds stuff so much deeper than I was expecting, one target, a ring looking thing but not a ring although the same sort of size was coming up at 32 on the VDI and I dug it from about 25 cm's deep in gravel and rocks, quite the mission with just a Lesche. When I take the Nox out tomorrow, a small shovel is coming with me. I've never had a fully waterproof detector before so I figured I'd dunk it in the river, and that I did, down it went under the water and I could see the screen on it in the water, it was as happy below the water as above. No issues at all there, I turned on the backlight under water so I could see the screen better. I also got it a bit dirty so I hosed it down when I got home. I like this waterproof stuff. I ended up making a few small mistakes on my detecting, for example I accidently notched out a target by pressing a wrong button, then the target just disappeared, and I couldn't work out why, I changed to Park 2 and it came back again so I pinpointed it and dug it up. It was an old tiny little hinge off something. I still haven't worked out how to bring the notched out segment back, I will read that in the manual soon as it appears to stay even after a power off. As for pinpointing, its amazingly accurate, something else I'm not used to, my other detectors may well be accurate to someone who can work out how to do it with them, but for me with the Equinox, it was simple, smack bang in the middle of the coil will be my target. I love the little meter system it has to pinpoint too, so easy to know exactly when you're on a target. All in all I am super impressed with my Equinox, I can't wait to try it out on the Gold areas, my wife is getting sick of going sluicing and doesn't want to go this weekend so I'm going to drive on up myself to the gold area and just mess around with my metal detector learning the ropes and hopefully finding some gold with it... The Equinox seems like a real game changer for me, it's super simple for a beginner to use and understand. I plan to make myself a chart tomorrow using Steve's template so I can know what local coin and so on is what VDI number.
  22. Fskafish

    Equinox Review

    An interesting interview on all metal modes podcast march 12 show...wow Listen to "George "TEX" Kinsey pt. 2" on Spreaker.
  23. After some button mashing in the back yard and a quick ball field hunt that netted me an earring and some change, I felt like today I could hit a local beach park primarily with the intent to try the beach modes and learn more about the Equinox 800. This local park is hunted extensively and in the off season the pickings are slim so I did not have any expectations that I would find much of anything. In fact I was willing to dig trash because that would just help me continue to learn the tones and get used to the routine of initializing the machine (mode select, noise cancel, GB if necessary, etc.) and get used to the routines associated with target ID, interrogation, and recovery. The beach is nice because target retrieval is easy, just dip the scoop in the sand, shake, grab the target and move on. Little did I know what I was in for. With my multiple test garden runs and short park run, I felt comfortable navigating the menus and doing the routine things needed to run the machine. Ergonomics: I set out for an hour or two hunt, but it ended up being almost 4 hours. I really had no trouble at all swinging the Equinox for four hours straight. I have made no modifications but being short the Equinox is shortened for me and does not have a great lever arm that torques me so I am comfortable with it. I have not even counterbalanced it AND I keep forgetting to install the arm strap. Despite that, the Equinox was really a dream to swing AND that is coming from a Deus guy. I guess I can go all day with the Deus if necessary, but I feel with the Equinox I can do pretty good all day, if I have a nice lunch break. Performance (Beach Mode): I put it in Beach 1, noise canceled and did nothing else to modify the program and started swinging away. I intended to stay high mostly on the dry sand to see if I could pick up old drops near the beach entrances. First target was a pencil (hit the eraser holder). I next hit foil juice pull lid. Third target sounded solid and was jumping a little but oscillated around 10. Dug it and boom. Gold in the sand. It was a small, gold Christ figurine from a crucifix that looks like it became separated from the cross. I could not find the cross. But yeah, Equinox scores gold on the third beach target and I thought well this was worth the trip and I don't mind digging trash the rest of the way. I did not hit much more trash or keepers other than a dime and some fishing tackle and then a few pennies on the high sand. I encountered several random noise bursts throughout my walk and wondered if it was nearby traffic (the park is adjacent to the main thoroughfare across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge). It was weird and I could not figure out the source. I u-turned and started heading back at the tide line but was not going to get myself or the Equinox wet at 45F and a steady 15 knot wind. The tide line is usually a sparky mess for the Deus but I can still hear strong coin targets above the din. Equinox, not a peep except for those noise bursts. I finally figured it out. I had my phone in my right hoody pocket which put it in close proximity to the control head. Moving the phone to my left pocket got rid of the random EMI. I never thought it hindered performance, it was more just weird and a little annoying. Anyway problem solved. As my made my way up the tide line I got a jumpy low 30's signal. Though jumpy, the tone was repeatable and said dig me. I honestly did not think I was going to find anything much on the tide line, just wanted to test the Equinox stability. All I had was my dry sand scoop so digging targets in the wet sand tide line ment I would just have to take several two handed scoopfuls of wet sand out and periodically check to see if I got the target out of the hole. This sucker was deep. A good foot plus and it was still sounding off. I figured I was chasing a phantom until the damn thing finally ended up in the pile. Boom, clad quarter. This scenario repeated itself several times up the tide line for quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies. Each time I pretty much knew I was digging a coin and they were all 7 to 15 inches down. Got fooled once with a sinker. The nickels hit just as hard as the high conductors and tells me this thing will hit some deep gold at the beach. I never worked so hard for a dollar plus worth of clad and never enjoyed it so much. I even dug a wheatie. I know these coins have been sitting there for awhile on this pounded beach and have been missed by a lot of folks because of their depth and proximity to the salt water line. The water hunters don't bother with this area and the sand people's vlf detectors don't work so well at that interface point and now I know what the Equinox can do. Also, lesson learned: always bring my water scoop for the wet stuff, there WILL be deep keepers found with Equinox. Lol. The other thing that was exciting were the very tiny targets that the Equinox had no trouble hitting (but I had a lot of trouble recovering, lol). An earring fastener, a small gear, small small pieces of mid-conductive metal, probably aluminum. These are the types of targets the Deus only hits when using the HF coils at 28khz or above. Very cool. [Note it is even more impressive to think that these tiny targets were mostly mid-conductors hit by the second least sparky program on the Equinox, i.e., lower frequency biased Beach 1. The magic of MultiIQ at work]. Trash was not really a problem, pic of some of it. Expected to dig the pull tab stuff but it was either 12 or 14/15 not 13. Ha! And the "All Metal" iron grunt trick does work on the crown caps. Color me impressed. Up next (hopefully) some colonial era relics in central Virginia. Thanks for reading. Chase
  24. On Sunday 25th February 2018. My first session out with the Equinox using Field 1 & 2 and the finds were quite mixed I found a slither of gold but I don't have a clue what it is off maybe off a watch strap I also had a nice Hammered Silver farthing of Henry 7th, a Victoria silver sixpence, 4 Roman bronzies 3 of which are Minums and a coin slightly smaller than a copper farthing I can't make out what it is. This last week I have been doing quite a bit of setting the Equinox up on my test bed and I thought I had it how I wanted it but when I got on the field I soon found out that I had jumped the gun as I started to get ground chatter and a slow reactivity so I had then to start from scratch and the machine was then coping well with the new settings and I started to pull out a lot of non-ferrous crap the good finds were giving repeatable signals but I will have to change all of the default "Tone Pitch's" and Volumes as they are not suitable for my lugs, I was using my GOG Headphones on the WM08 wireless module. I don't do a lot of screen watching but this being the first real session with the Equinox I kept looking at all of the signals to try and get an identity check of the signals in the grey matter, the slither of gold was hitting 8 but repeatable and was around 6" deep the small hammered silver was hitting 16 - 17 and again about the 6" mark, the Victoria sixpence came through on a solid 25 and was around 9" deep, the Roman minums and the larger copper coin were again giving repeatable signals between 16 - 20. I would almost certainly say that the CTX, the Etrac and the Deus would have got these coins, but with the Equinox it is early days and I feel sure that there is a lot more to be got from this machine. The biggest shock I got was when I got a good solid repeatable signal of 16 and I had to dig a deep hole and at 12" deep I kept thinking it has to be something non-ferrous and it was when I was poking about with the probe in the bottom of the 12" deep hole that I found a 1" ferrous steel screw and I thought that I must have something else down there in the hole but no nothing else, I will have to get better acquainted with the "Iron Bias" settings. There has to be a big learning curve with this machine because the signal responses and settings are nothing like the CTX or the Etrac or the Deus and most of the signals are of the same volume strength in my ears very soft and could be louder and before my next session I will setup the tones differently to get a better pitch and individual volumes as well.
  25. Ok, I've taken my 800 to several heavily hunted places where I had finally stopped pulling anything worthwhile the last couple of visits. I have pounded these places into submission with the Etrac and several large and small coils. Then last January I went back with the CTX and took out a few more keepers using the stock and 6" coil. The trash is light to moderate here, I normally run an open screen with combined tones on the CTX, 2TTF on the Etrac with no disc as well. I had visions of taking the EQ to these sights and finding a few more coins and things I thought I may have missed with the FBS and FBS2 machines. Well, you know what happens when expectations meet reality, disappointment. I spent 3 days and 15-20 hours hunting behind the CTX and I scored a big fat zero, nothing old, deep or worth keeping. I was kinda bummed out to say the least!! I tried using Park 1 and 2 with a low recovery speed, 3-4 and iron bias at 2-3 and as high a sensitivity as possible. I was reading a post by someone on one of the forums about him hitting a iffy target with a recovery speed of 4, he then upped the speed to 7 and he got a nice clean repeatable signal in some heavy trash. Light bulb moment!!! I came to the conclusion that I was trying to force the Nox to perform the same as the CTX and not for the purpose I had bought it(extreme trashy sites) I had sold a Racer 2 and some some coils to buy the Nox for the same purpose I had acquired the R2, fast recovery in heavy trash. So, I set my 800 up in Park 2, 5 tones, full volume on all segments, tone break for high conductors at 21, recovery at 7 and iron bias at 3 with no disc. Yesterday I headed to an an old abandoned baseball field that must have been used as a dumping ground at one point, it is the trashiest place I've hunted in town. I fired up the Nox and did my noise cancel and GB, set my sens at 20 and began swinging. It didn't take long to see where this machine is going to shine for me, the speed and crispness of the tones even in a heavily polluted sight was amazing. I used a moderate swing speed, faster then I would swing my CTX, but, not whipping it. There was no doubt when I hit a target in my high tone zone I ended up taking out 2 Mercs yesterday a 1940 and 44 and one today, 1924, along with a wheat. I zeroed in one the nastiest places on purpose since I had spent hours with the CTX on the cleaner spots and didn't want to waste my time, maybe another day!! I found more memorials today than I had in the last 3-4 trips combined, all intermingled with trash and iron of every kind. The high tones pop compared to the lower tones and left no doubt I had run my coil over a high conductive target. The copper pennies read 25-26 with steady numbers, deep flattened alum screw tops read 29-35, very bouncy. The merc I found today locked on at 28, 4" down and almost straight up and down with a sweet high tone. So, what I now realize is, the 800 will not take the place of my CTX in light to moderate trashy sites, it provides way too much target info on the deeper high conductors. But, anywhere I need target separation and a faster sweep speed, the Nox will take over from there. I just need that 6" coil to really see what this machine can do, I'm sure I'll have another big surprise in store.