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Found 282 results

  1. so all you guys know your Detector? Or so you thought maybe or maybe so you thought?  So lots of you may be asking or have been asking or are curious about which Detector is better and probably assuming the 800 is way better and stronger than the 600. Or which is better for the beginner? The Minelab Equinox 600 or 800? What Detector is more powerful? Therefore producing more finds and at better quality? Or are they in a nutshell the exact same Detector besides A extra mode ( Gold ), and 20 and 40 khz are available to be single frequencies on the Equinox 800 and not the 600. Does The Equinox 600 have 20 and 40 khz in multi frequency? And the 800 has more adjustable tone pitches in more tone brackets and recovery speed is more adjustable and iron bias as well. But are as I said in a nutshell are the same exact animal. Truly deep, capable of all types of metal detecting adventures, fully submersible and the actually find amazing finds. Whatever you buy make sure it's a Minelab Equinox. They produce. Just don't go about it like I did and dying to set up most advanced settings and trying to copy someone's program. Let that metal detector talk to you and you'll create a bond with it and only tweak it when you feel the need to be able to comprehend it better. It's preset modes are incredible and this detector is truly worth every penny.... Thanks for listening guys
  2. 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. White's Visual Discrimination Identification (VDI) Scale 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 basic 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 this is 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.
  3. Just curious, how many prospectors are still swinging around a Minelab SD series, GP or even GPX4000?? These models hardly get a mention these days. For those that are swinging these older models, here's a few additional questions do get a bit of chatter happening....maybe Have you tried any of the new flat/spiral wound coils? Have you tried modern boosters, or aftermarket battery options? On a personal note, I still have a SD2100e and a GP3500 but they don't get any serious use. The 2100 is very sentimental model to me as it was the detector I found my first nugget with. The GP3500 was my baby, where Minelab added everything I wished for. It still has the best audio in any prospecting detector I've used to date (admittedly she's a bit on the quiet side).
  4. I have the Simplex + and thinking about buying the Vanquish 540 but do I really need to spend over the cost of the Vanquish to get a great detector? I’ve had and have higher cost detectors but I want your opinion . Chuck
  5. Hey guys n girls I have a doozie of a question for anyone that may be in the know. I'm not sure how to ask this without being negative towards a great detector Minelabs GPZ7000 approx $9000 Australian dollars. I was watching some YouTube videos on the Ajax Segma 3d metal detector. It has an 8m depth. Finds all types of metals, water even under ground caves. The cost is A lot less than a GPZ7000 My main question is why have we not seen or heard more about this in Australia. I mean if not for general gold detecting, but for bigger companies using it to find the depth of the gold they need to mine. Check out the detector by Ajax and I think the other one is a company called Ger from Germany.
  6. any thoughts on the use of a geiger counter instead of a metal detector for prospecting ....U , TH , TE , IN , RB , RE , PT
  7. Hi All I've been hearing rumours of a new gold machine in the works ? Is there any truth in this and if so what are some of the rumours or truths about it. Cheers
  8. I’ll post link here. Folks can comment if they wish. Saves me time by not posting in detail on all forums. I like this forum very much. Hope I am not breaking rules here or am not upsetting anyone. http://www.dankowskidetectors.com/discussions/read.php?2,173272
  9. Well it’s official. The Garrett GTI 2500, the flagship of the Garrett metal detector lineup, was over 20 years old in 2019. The GTI 2500 was introduced in 1999. Twenty years is an awfully long time in technology land, and I’d say it’s well past time for Garrett to do something about that. What would you like to see from Garrett in 2020? Garrett GTI 2500 Data & Specifications
  10. Here is a good Sunday read for you. Reg wrote what is still the best introductory text on PI detectors. Recently he added extra chapters at the Findmall forum. Even if you read the original before it is worth reading again. Understanding The PI Metal Detector by Reg Sniff http://chemelec.com/Projects/Metal-1a/Understanding-the-PI-Detector.htm Deepest PI Detector by Reg Sniff Part One Link deleted since Findmall update broke old links Deepest PI Detector by Reg Sniff Part Two Link deleted since Findmall update broke old links
  11. Hello Guys, I'm new on this forum and like Alexandre Tartar, I live in north of France. I was a young prospector in the 90's and asked my father (electronic engineer with good knowledge in magnetic field theory) to build a PI to hunt the beaches. So we have made, in a few months, an home-made PI metal detector 25 years ago, based on the technology of the old White's Surfmaster PI (mono coil). I remember the use of FETs (Field Effects Transistors to make 200 volts pulses). It worked, but unfortunately, my father was afraid by a so powerful magnetic fields and has continued his research on VLF detectors, until today ! After this short presentation, here's my question : Is the Impulse AQ a bipolar detector ? Le Jag has explained us on the french forum "detecteur.net" this technology developped by Alexandre : Positive and Negative pulse are alternatively sent. The positive one light the gold ring but magnetize the soil. The negative one demagnetize the soil. What about it ?
  12. http://www.dankowskidetectors.com/discussions/read.php?2,172859
  13. From the Codan news release at http://www.codan.com.au/Portals/0/investorpubs/22 AXS Announcement - Minelab awarded $6.7m contract.pdf (copy below): "Cooperating with NIITEK Inc., the HDD will combine Minelab’s new Multiple Frequency Continuous Wave metal detection technology and NIITEK’s advanced ground penetrating radar." 31 August 2016 MINELAB AWARDED CONTRACT TO DEVELOP NEW HANDHELD DEVICE DETECTOR FOR THE AUSTRALIAN DEFENCE FORCE Minelab Electronics, a wholly owned subsidiary of Codan Limited, has been awarded a $6.7m contract by the Department of Defence to develop a new Handheld Device Detector (HDD). The funding received under this contract is to further develop a dual sensor metal detector which incorporates ground penetrating radar. It will partially offset the development costs of the product, and the project is expected to be completed by 2018. The development of the HDD builds on Minelab's success in technology development and product innovation for use in military programmes. Codan is particularly pleased to be of service to the ADF and to provide an enhanced capability that currently does not exist. Once the HDD enters into service with the ADF, we are confident that other militaries will seek the same level of capability, broadening our market for countermine products. The contract supports Codan's stated strategy of growing its profitability by improving and broadening our product offerings while ensuring our value propositions remain relevant and leading-edge. Previous to this award, in March 2014, Minelab was selected by the Department of Defence's Rapid Prototype Development and Evaluation (RPDE) programme to receive $1.0m in funding to further integrate metal detection and ground penetration radar technologies into a lightweight and compact mechanical platform. In December 2014, RPDE provided an additional $1.3m in funding, and Minelab subsequently produced an advanced prototype of the HDD. Cooperating with NIITEK Inc., the HDD will combine Minelab's new Multiple Frequency Continuous Wave metal detection technology and NIITEK's advanced ground penetrating radar. The HDD was designed taking into account the comprehensive requirements of the ADF, supplemented with feedback from Army User Groups. It will include advanced detection technologies as well as new standards of compactness and ergonomics. On behalf of the Board Michael Barton Company Secretary MORE INFORMATION ON THE NIITEK/MINELAB GROUNDSHARK Minelab Mineshark
  14. Show simple targets you swore were gold. These were 12" inches plus in depth (all lead)....... Found with a borrowed GPX 4500
  15. The GB knob on my Tejon is super loose now after the tons of hours I put on it and I get a little waver in the threshold. Trying to find who sells damping grease in really small quantities as the stuff is horribly expensive. Mcmaster has some at $111 + shipping, Amazon has some in the $30 range and all more expensive than the potentiometer itself. I could replace it but rather not start soldering in parts if I don't have to.
  16. HOW MAKE A SERIOUS COMPARATIVE TESTS PROCEDURE First rule Blind tests are mandatory to be serious. Second rule if you do not agree refer to rule number 1 😊 The purpose of this playground, and not to take into account the feeling of the prospector. It is too easy for a participant to indicate that he is correctly detecting the target. But in general he does not detect it or he thinks to detect it. It often detects a ground effect. During our long experience and our meetings with prospectors at the beach, we realized that the prospector was often influenced by the pride placed in his detector. This is why we have implemented this drastic and non-falsifiable comparative tests procedure. Of course for this test you have to be 2 people. A person who hides targets and a person who tries to find them. The depth tests can be done simultaneously. It is obvious that here are static tests. The reality is even more difficult! See for yourself the catastrophic results .... Document here : ******************************* https://www.casimages.com/f/qyqU0eUlCSb ******************************* COMPARATIVE TESTS PROCEDURE.pdf
  17. The "holy grail" of metal detecting has been a detector that can offer VLF type discrimination to PI detector depth. Many years ago I put it as "a White's MXT that can detect as deep as a Minelab GP". I once offered $10,000 for such a detector, back when it seemed ludicrous to think detectors would ever reach such a high price. We have had a lot of progress in the last 30 years on sheer depth of detection, but really not much at all when it comes to how deep a target can be detected and identified with decent accuracy. When it comes to accurate target id at depth multi frequency units set the standard for performance in all soil types. The Fisher CZ and Minelab Sovereign both came out in 1991, and in my opinion other than refinements nothing has really changed since then when it comes down to the classic question of "how deep can you detect and correctly identify a U.S. dime?" For single frequency detectors my old Compass Gold Scanner Pro back in 1989 punched as deep on a dime as anything made today. We need some sort of real breakthrough. What this would really mean is a machine that handles and eliminates ground better to deliver depth as close to air tests as is possible while retaining good discrimination. The long rumored (since 2015) Fisher CZX promises "groundbreaking technology" in the form of a two frequency detector that is "deeper than current VLF, this detector will also see through red dirt, and highly mineralized soil." For even longer we have known about the White's Half Sine Patent that states "A new hybrid metal detector combines induction balance and pulse induction technologies. Target signals are generated from a transmitted wave that has both induction balance and pulse current inducing characteristics and uses pertinent sampling of the receive data. Combining the two data sources provides eddy current target identification while excluding ground permeability and remanence obscuration." Now, the Fisher price target was said to be in the $1000 - $2000 range. Frankly, that seems way too low for something that would knock the industry on its ear if it came to pass, but it may be we are all assuming the CZX to be more than it really is. The talk is mainly about being simple and handling bad ground well, but how well it can identify targets at depth is really not discussed. All the CZX may turn out to be is my long hoped for ergonomic detector that outperforms the White's TDI in the $1000 - $2000 price range. The Mosca machine mentioned on the same thread has different engineers involved and so these are probably two separate projects. OK, long lead in to the AKA Intronik STF as described at http://md-hunter.com/aka-intronik-stf-price-starts-from-12000-the-most-expensive-detector/ and said to be selling for $12,000.00. Another thread here states "AKA succeed working out VLF detector working 2 frequency at once. This detector sees no differance if ground is heavely mineralized or it's a non salty sand or even air, it's not being influanced by mineralisation at all. It's deep as Signum MFT but with right identification at any depth." Looks to be translated poorly from original Russian, or at least I hope that's the excuse for the butchered English! However, what the AKA Intronik is promising is a two frequency machine that ignores ground mineralization, and that sounds a lot like what the Fisher CZX is promising. The White's is a different beast but same basic result being discussed - a breakthrough in the ability to discriminate targets at depth. And in my book all that means is something clearly better than what we have, not results so close that endless videos and arguments on the internet produce no clear winners. We want something that when put up against a Fisher CZ and F75 and Minelab CTX everyone clearly agrees "this thing accurately sees a dime deeper" Many nugget hunters may be ignoring all this, but the applications for a detector that really can get the depth and identify trash better are huge. In fact, I am willing to bet many of the best finds remaining in the United States at least are in those areas that are full of so much trash that PI operators have barely put a dent in them. Clear open trash free patches have been pounded to death, but there are many places where the volume of deep nails alone continues to defeat even the most patient hunters. People are/were will to pay $8000 - $10,000 for a GPZ 7000. How much is a GPZ with discrimination worth? Quite a bit perhaps to many gold hunters. What I wonder however is what the limits are for the coin and relic hunters. My gut feeling was that the coin hunters were not as willing to spend big bucks as the gold hunters. It is easy to rationalize high price gold machines if you are the sort of person who is confident you can find enough gold to pay for your detector. The thing is I never thought the GPZ would sell very well because it as priced so high. Then I opened my eyes. There are people here in the U.S. buying GPZ detectors that have found little if any gold in the past with detectors. There are people that show up at outings with a 24 foot motor home pulling a side by side ATV behind. There are people for whom buying a $10,000 metal detector is no different than buying a high price set of golf clubs or a snowmobile or a boat. Yes, I understand many people have tight budgets, but it is also obvious many people have lots of money to throw at their pastimes and playthings. The GPZ 7000 shocked me with how many people bought them. I was honestly hoping the price would limit the numbers seen in the field for at least a year or two. The relic people seem to be the same way. There was little resistance to moving up to the GPX 5000 back east in the big relic hunts when it became obvious those machines would deliver the goods VLF detectors missed. The GPZ has not has made as much impact there simply because it is too sensitive to tiny trash so a relic hunter is normally better off with a GPX, which has more ability to deal with at least some trash. Lots of beach hunters are using GPX detectors now. And even some park hunters in the never ending quest for more depth. So I am wondering just how much more I would be willing to shell out to be the first kid on my block to have a real leg up on the competition with a machine that could make silver coins easy to find again in U.S. parks by offering better discrimination at depth. I then of course I figured I would ask you all the same question. What is the most you would shell out for such a machine if it really delivered the goods? Me, I looked at the $12,000 for the AKA Intronik and initially thought that was crazy. The more I think about it however I am not so sure - if it really worked. Sure, that would price many people right out of the thing, but oddly enough that would make others crave it even more. There is always something attractive in basic marketing 101 for people having possession of something other people can't afford. What say you forum members? Would you buy an AKA Intronik if it really performed as advertised and for such a high price? If not, what would it be worth to you? Please note - I am not saying the AKA Intronik does do what it says in any way. I truly have no idea. But if it does, what is the "right price"?
  18. Hey everyone, Just curious, has anyone tried lowering the tone break T1 to negative numbers or all the way down to -9 on your hunts? Is it worth it, did anything good come out? Or is it just a recipe for headache? Reason being, I was playing yesterday with the coil and found an old button that is clearly non-ferrous, but gives negative TID in multi-frequency and positive/negative on some single freqs. Thank you
  19. A few afternoons back I went out to a local beach to do my normal searching. It has been a time of few waves and even fewer targets. Everyone hears this from me quite often but I've heard it from other detectorists as well. So, you relax, go slow and just enjoy the beach. A bit down from me I saw a group along the blanket line and there was something different. There was a little kid (older than mine) about 5 or so swinging a metal detector. It had a kinda orange coil and the kid just was playing with it a bit and then running around with the other kids. I decided to go up with my 800 in hand and have a little chat with him and maybe 'show' him how to find things. By the time I got up to where he was he was out near the water and the only one still around was his dad and his dad's friend or brother. We started up a bit of a chat and they said they had bought the detector off of Amazon for $60. I didn't recognize it but it was giving my 800 an EMI fit so I went to a different channel. I told them what I had in mind (quarter in hand) and they called the little boy over. I wish I had taken a picture of the detector but it was a short arm, adjustable with compression fittings, concentric coil detector of a brand I didn't catch. It had a screen that was discriminating and it did 'find' the planted quarter which the kid liked but didn't have that much interest in it. One of the really interesting parts of the story was the friend. He told me it was an Amazon purchase and thought that $60 should make it a very good detector. They didn't really have a clue. They asked me about mine and I told them and I could see their jaws drop a bit on now knowing that 'pros' like me were out with detectors from $500 to $900! It was way out side of their conception so they asked me what did I think of their detector. I didn't really pick it up but I told them there are these new little detectors that could be better than a lot of the detectors just 5 to 8 years old that sold for much, much higher prices. This is part of the new purchaser and market for the detector companies which provide higher end products like Minelab. It is a new reality of buyer and probably the reason for their low end detectors. When I came back and searched Amazon looking for this $60 detector I was flooded with many, many detectors from companies unknown. Minelab is not on Amazon it seems and many other searches for the average buyer. Some of you here see some advertising on this forum for the best metal detectors. I started a thread about it a couple of weeks back. One thing I did happen across when looking for the metal detectors were a few 'board detectors.' These were complete metal detectors on a circuit board that sell for less than $5.00! It becomes more clear that these detector circuit boards placed in a molded plastic handle become the brains for a $50.00 detector that wholesales for maybe $26. Components are cheap. Marketing and R&D are expensive! I didn't find much on the beach that day but I brightened the face of a little kid and I got a good story.
  20. I am looking for some objective non-partisan opinions on what detectors are in use right now. I am seriously not interested in people promoting their favorite brand but just hoping for some honest observations. At your club what are the most prevalent brands and models you are seeing? Same thing at the hunts. What are the top two or three models you are seeing? My last couple trips to the UK it was simple. Now these are groups comprised not of locals, but visitors from the U.S. I’d say 95% were swinging either a XP Deus or Minelab Equinox, plus a few CTX 3030. That seriously was about it. In my circle of the serious prospectors I know it’s pretty much a Minelab PI/GPZ world. For VLF prospecting units lots of Gold Bugs, Gold Monsters, and White’s Goldmasters/MXTs. Garrett AT Golds are pretty rare. But what about general coin and relic across the U.S.? Not the serious forum types but the folks at the clubs and hunts. I’m guessing some regional preferences, and I’d have to guess Garrett is still big with many club type hunters going by YouTube activity. But I honestly don’t know what the masses are using and thought you all might enlighten me on that? This is really nothing other then pure curiosity on my part. Thanks in advance for any comments.
  21. The art of detection shares common issues whether it be audio, optical, rf or electromagnetic. Some of the common issues are: A: Sensitivity B. Noise C. False signals and also the problems that filtering or mixing creates in trying to solve the above issues. A radar detector faces many of the same problems as a metal detector, and has up until this point in time used similar techniques to provide solutions. A radar detector manufacturer named Radenso has now applied AI to solving these issues. And some of their methodology could have applications in metal detecting. They are taking signal samples to identify good and bad targets and feeding them to a Super Computer, that then creates a signature which is programmed into the radar detector. So the super computer does the heavy lifting creating a library, and allowing the processor in the detector to simply do a lookup from a library. Some terms for those not familiar to aid in watching the videos: CW = continuous wave similar to a signal from a VLF metal detector BSM = Blind Spot Monitor are radar based collision and lane change units which emit radar and drive radar detector users crazy(think bottlecaps). Door Openers = Equal microwave(radar) motion detectors to open the automatic doors at retail stores etc https://www.vortexradar.com/2019/11/radenso-introduces-artificial-intelligence-in-radar-detectors/
  22. I do what I can to foster competition that develops alternatives to the all too common VLF detector. There are plenty of options out there, but in my opinion they all weigh too much or cost too much. Usually both. I envision people out there with a popular VLF metal detector for beach, relic, or gold detecting. These machines all sell for around $700 and weigh 2.5 - 3.9 lbs. Perhaps they would like to add a ground balancing PI (GBPI) to what they have. I think that for "normal people" with normal budgets a machine under $2K and under four pounds just makes sense. It would be more than twice what they spent for their VLF, and in this day and age there is no reason why a decent PI should weigh over 4 lbs. To clarify what I am talking about here, I should say that for many people a $700 VLF detector is a great place to start and in many cases is all a person ever needs. However, there are places where extreme ground mineralization and mineralized rocks (hot rocks) severely impede the performance and use of VLF detectors. Alternative technology to deal with these conditions has been developed, by far the most familiar being the Minelab ground balancing PI (GBPI) detectors. These differ from common PI detectors by having the ability to ground balance. Other brands have offered the Garrett Infinium (discontinued) plus Garrett ATX and the White's TDI models. These detectors are used not just for gold prospecting but also by relic hunters, beach detectorists, and others who face challenges regarding ground mineralization and VLF detectors. Frankly, in my opinion GBPI technology is largely maxed out. The main room for improvement comes now in better ergonomics at lower prices. This challenge therefore limits detectors to those that weigh under 4 pounds with battery included, and which sell brand new with warranty after discounts for under US$2000. Detectors need not be ground balancing PI models, but must offer similar ability to ignore mineralized ground and hot rocks that trouble VLF detectors. I am going to rate detectors as to their relative performance using what I call the "Minelab Rating Scale. Details here. 1. Minelab SD 2000 - crude first version, very poor on small gold, excellent on large deep gold 2. Minelab SD 2100 - vastly refined version of SD 2000 3. Minelab SD 2200 (all versions) - adds crude iron disc, ground tracking 4. Minelab GP Extreme - adds greatly improved sensitivity to small gold, overall performance boost. 5. Minelab GP 3000 - Refined GP Extreme 6. Minelab GP 3500 - Greatly refined GP 3000, last and best of analog models 7. Minelab GPX 4000 - First digital interface, rock solid threshold 8. Minelab GPX 4500 - Refined GPX 4000, solid performer 9. Minelab GPX 4800 - Released at same time as GPX 5000 as watered down version 10. Minelab GPX 5000 - Culmination of the series, current pinnacle of GBPI prospecting machine technology. All Minelab models leverage an existing base of over 100 coil options from tiny to huge. I am a very practical person when it comes to detecting. I know all the existing models and options by all brands very well, perhaps better than almost anyone. This is the way I look at it is this. If I personally were to spend a lot of money to go gold prospecting for one month, and needed a GBPI detector, considering machines past and present, what would I get and in what order of choice? Put aside concerns of age, warranty, etc. just assume functioning detectors. Here is the issue in a nutshell. On the Minelab scale of one to ten as listed above, I would be generous in rating the White's TDI SL as a 2. Same with the Garrett Infinium which I will mention in passing as it is no longer being made. If I was going to spend a month of my time and a lot of money going on a prospecting trip, I would choose a TDI in any version over the SD 2000. I might go with a TDI Pro over a SD 2100 but I would have to think real hard about that, and when push comes to shove I would go SD 2100 were it not for the realities of age I said to ignore. A newer TDI Pro might be a better bet than a very old SD 2100 from a reliability standpoint, but again, this would be a tough choice. The TDI SL not really. In my opinion I would be shooting myself in the foot to go on this hypothetical trip with a TDI SL instead of a SD 2100. You see the problem now? The Garrett ATX fares better. I would rate it a 3, roughly analogous to the SD 2200 variants. Still an agonizing choice really and the ATX being new versus SD 2200 being old might again be the tipping point, but from a pure prospecting options perspective the case can be made that the SD 2200 might be the better way to go. The problem for this challenge is the ATX weighs way over 4 lbs and sells for slightly over $2000. The price is close enough really but the 7 lb weight is way off. That's it folks. That is reality. The best of the best that the competition can offer can only go solidly up against models Minelab has not made in years. I am not saying that to be mean or as some kind of Minelab toadie, that is my pure unvarnished opinion as a guy who is pretty well versed on the subject. Let's bring it all home. This person with the $700 machine really, really wants that under 4 lb, under $2K GBPI machine, but if they do their homework they discover that truthfully, they would be better off shopping for a used Minelab than what the competition offers new. With the TDI SL rated as a 2 the ATX in a much lighter box at under $2K is a solid win as a 3. A well designed ATX with standard dry land coils would look very enticing as compared to the GP series Minelabs. But Garrett refuses to budge! White's can certainly do something, anything to improve the TDI SL. A battery that lasts all day would be a good start. In the end they are limited by the basic single channel design of the machine. The SD 2000 dual channel design was literally the answer to and the improvement on the single channel technology used in the TDI, the basics of which predate the SD 2000. Still, White's currently owns the under 4 lb under $2K GBPI category so they have the first out of the starting gate advantage. Anything they do would at the very least just show they have not given up. The Minelab MPS patent that formed the basis of the SD series has expired. Not sure about DVT, which formed the basis of the GP series. Where is the competition? What the heck is going on here? Much gnashing of teeth and pulling of hair is going on here, that's what!!! That is my challenge to the manufacturers. Under 4 lbs, under $2K, on the 1-10 scale I am offering, what is the best you can do? The TDI SL as a 2? Really? Yes, really, that is currently the best of the best in the brand new ground balancing PI, full warranty, under 4 lb, under $2k category. You can pick up a 3.5 lb TDI SL right now brand new for $1049. The White's TDI SL takes the crown. Note that a challenger has a half pound of weight they can add to the TDI SL and still make the 4 lb mark, and retail can be almost double the $1049 of the TDI SL and still come in at the 2K mark. I therefore do not think my challenge is outright crazy. Hopefully we will see more competition in this wide open category soon. I have been beating this drum for years to no avail, but I do have reason to believe we are finally going to see more alternatives soon. I hope. White's Electronics TSI SL metal detector
  23. From Wikipedia: "A long-range locator is a class of fraudulent devices purported to be a type of metal detector, supposedly able to detect a variety of substances, including gold, drugs and explosives; most are said to operate on a principle of resonance with the material being detected." There is more at the link, but "a class of fraudulent devices" says it all as far as I am concerned. I just wanted to post this so people can find it in the search results in case they are looking. For me these devices have always failed the most basic test... the experience of hundreds of thousands of prospectors and treasure hunters around the world. Treasure hunters and gold prospectors will give anything a try that might work, no matter how crazy it seems. If it works, the use soon spreads to other prospectors. You can Google genuine successful results for regular metal detectors all day long. The internet is full of successful people using normal metal detectors to make great finds. Except for a few obvious promotionals, the success stories of people using LRL devices are glaringly absent. All excuses for why this is so flies in the face of the simple common sense answer - they don't work. In almost 50 years of metal detecting and prospecting I have met a lot of successful people, and none of them got that way by relying on a long range locator. Part two of the common sense test is if they did work, there would be at least a few users of these devices that would be fabulously rich. The few I have met are anything but... just the opposite. Again, excuses made about why these rich LRL users are invisible fly in the face of common sense. As if we are not a country that brags about every tiny thing we can think of! The only people getting rich are the people selling these devices. I personally refuse to purchase anything from a company selling long range locators. It says something about the management of the company that makes me prefer to do business elsewhere. More at Geotech
  24. Will 2020 be the year of the cliche product? Will we see products capitalizing on the 'better vision' theme? Have you already seen them? haha 😋 What marketing slogan would you use for a new detector, coil, pointer, pick, pan, 4x4, etc., etc. ??? Here are a couple that come to mind ... White's Detectors ... clearly Better in 2020! Everyone will have 2020 nugget vision with the new Minelab ... New in 2020, glasses for your detector ... get our clear boost signal enhancer.
  25. Since I'm down and out with a broken ankle for a few weeks and have plenty of time on my hands. I decided to do a EX2 chest mount mod that I saw on You-Tube by IDX Monster, thank you sir for paving the way!! I have a bum shoulder that needs to be rebuilt next year, I needed to adapt my machine to extend my hunting time until then. I used a Teknetics S-rod for the stock 11" coil and a White's MX5 S-rod for the 8" coil. I'll be using a Go-Pro chesty to mount the control head and I bought a 3' extension cable to connect the control to the coil. I cut the battery housing from the handle, but, I have a more compact and lighter battery pack on the way. I ordered a 1/4" stereo headphone jack from Amazon and will run my phone cord under my shirt to keep it from getting in the way. This set-up is as light as feather to swing and I can't wait to heal up and take it on it's maiden voyage.
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