These are my thoughts, you may agree/disagree with my comments but detecting like all hobbies is all about opinions!

I do not have favourite manufacturers, I am totally neutral.  I choose to use whatever I think is the best detector for the type of detecting that I do.

20/4/18
The Minelab Equinox seems to have dominated the detecting scene for 6 months now.  I received mine 2 weeks ago (thanks Craig).  I have been trying to get my hands on one for months, mainly so that I could get covers made for it.  At this time of writing they should be available week starting 22/4/18.

Not had much time to play with the Equinox yet - I have used it twice.  I detect on permanent pasture mainly so all I am interested in is depth.  After a quick go on my test bed I found that Park 2 was the deepest I could get it to detect, with the sensitivity on the maximum of 25.  It was not as lightweight as I thought it would be but that doesn't bother me as I use a harness on all detectors I use anyway.  The other Detectors I use are a Deus, Minelab CTX 3030 and a Minelab GPX 5000.  I also have a Minelab E-Trac, however that will probably be going now and be replaced with the Equinox.

As I said, I have used the Equinox twice so far, on pasture (ridge and furrow), and I have also spent several hours on my test bed.

Like most of you out there I have heard all the hype for months now and spoken to a few people that now own one.  Most people were positive, one or two negative.

Most people thought it was going to be better than the CTX/E-Trac etc; this would never happen surely!  Minelab would never release a new detector at £879 that was better than a detector costing twice as much.  This would no doubt kill the CTX and E-Trac sales and would change the entire market.  It's already had an affect on the market since its release was announced.  It's the detector most people want and the back orders are growing faster than the supply!

Because dealers are not  currently taking part exchanges against the Equinox, I am getting twice as many phone calls than normal.  I am having to pick and choose because I do not want to be stuck with a load of none selling detectors.  If the Equinox is the best detector out there? and it sells at £879 new, everything else has to be less second-hand.

So how does it perform?.  I took it up to my test bed within 10 mins of putting it together.  I try dozens of detectors every week on my test bed so I know what to expect from every detector.   The first target was a Bronze Age axe head at 18'', it just about got that.  There is iron down the hole somewhere so nothing gets it except my GPX 5000.  Iron tests went as expected no different than most detectors, the only difference being is that you can swing the Equinox faster.  I am slow anyway so it is no particular benefit to me. 

Then on to the cut quarters, I have one very low conductive cut quarter that's buried at 4''; the CTX gets it about 4'' above the ground, the Equinox gets it about 6'' above the ground, hmmm.

Onto the 5 pence pieces.  My CTX gets 5 pence at 12'' with a dodgy but 'digable'; signal; the Equinox gets it at 15'' with a loud signal - very impressive, but this again is above the ground as my deepest 5 pence is buried at 12''

First impressions In the field it's awesome on small targets, deep on all targets.  All the signals seem to be amplified so you don't seem to get ''dodgy signals'' - it's either a signal or not.

The downside is it loves big iron targets.  So far I find it is a nightmare among iron if there are big objects involved.  Big iron targets on their own with a bit of practice you can recognise.

I find among iron I can get my CTX or E-Trac to work better, but it is early days yet!

If you are the sort of detectorist that runs across ploughed fields on club outings, rallies etc, where it's all about covering as much ground as possible, then this is a very fast detector to use.  It was originally being compared to, and in competition with, the Deus - no competition in terms of performance; the Equinox is far superior - it's deeper, Faster and the discrimination is better.

I've had my Deus for 6 years and I'll not part with it.  It's great in the first few inches  - it's lightweight, it's wireless, great on bank sides and ideal for taking on holiday (fitting into a rucksack really well).  The downside for me is that the signals are mixed and dodgy (unless the target is shallow) and I'm sure there is some way of using it on wet sand but I haven't discovered the secret yet!

I can get my Deus to go as deep as my CTX but the trade off is the discrimination.
I find the 9'' round HF coil is the best and have now sold all my other coils.

Back to the Equinox, it's not going to replace the CTX but I think it will seriously devalue it, after all the Equinox is a replacement for the X Terra - simple menus, limited info on the screen.

I presume Minelab will eventually create a similar detector to replace the CTX with a similar performance to the Equinox or better, GPS, and more information on the screen.  If so put me down for one!

To be continued ....

27/4/18
There are a lot of very good detectors out there at the moment at good prices so whatever you choose you should get some success.

I used my Equinox last Sunday all day and although I dug more than I would normally dig, none of it was very exciting.  I would sooner use my CTX but I have seen the results on my test bed, so will continue to use the Equinox.  I just need to get to get used to it.

The silly season is here again, loads of people buying covers off us thinking they are getting a Deus or whatever for £9.95.  It's all done on e-bay, people see a picture and buy what they see without reading the description.  It normally happens at this time of year (Summer hols) and Christmas, these people do exist!

So, if you see a cover for sale with the words 'detector not included' you know why!

29/5/18
Back from hols in Scotland to a load of orders and plenty of phone calls!
I took 3 detectors on holiday with me  - the Deus, Minelab GPX 5000 and Equinox.  I did a couple of hours a day on several local beaches but as normal on Scottish beaches I found nothing of interest.  Best find being 2 pence, but I did dig a lot of targets.  I only used the Equinox and it worked very well on the wet and dry sand.

Out all day on Sunday again using the Equinox on a rolled and seeded field, dug the most targets I have ever dug in one outing - 116 non ferrous items.  I have recorded every detecting session for the last 20 years so have all the stats available.

1st signal was half a Denarius, went on to dig 14 buttons, an 1889 silver 3d, a 1949 shilling and a 1806 halfpenny, best find by far being a Bronze Age knife at 15''.  Not used anything else since I got the Equinox.

4/6/18
Back out again yesterday with the Equinox.  We (myself and Lee) chose to have a go on a very worked out DMV, a load of people have detected on there in the past including clubs etc.  It's full of very large pieces of iron most of which were giving a very good signal.  I was getting a few other non ferrous finds as well and found a Cartwheel penny (how had that been missed?), a George V penny and a few more bits - all high conductive targets.  I was finding it a nightmare to use among the iron and at dinner time changed to my Minelab GPX 5000, this of course is a pulse detector which most people would think was an iron magnet, but I can work it very well amongst the iron and I started to find a few of bits of lead etc.  Gave it an hour then back to the Equinox.  I had to make it work amongst the iron and I also wanted to see if I could get a bit more depth out of it by learning what a 'dodgy' signal sounded like.  Up to now it had either been a definite signal or not, so I asked Lee to give me a shout when he got a signal and I would go over it and see if I could get it or not before he dug it up.  This is the best way to see what a detector can do.  Natural targets in permanent pasture can never be reproduced on a test bed.

Lee is using a Minelab GPX 5000 - not a standard one.  It's had £1000 worth of tweaking done to it to make it better and it's fitted with a 15'' Detech coil which is awesome so I would expect him to get signals I couldn't get with the Equinox.

So the first signal I tried with the Equinox was a very loud signal on the GPX, all I got on the Equinox was an iron grunt.  I have set it up on Multitone with -9 to +2 rejected.  The target was dug out and there sitting at 10'' was a very nice Henry 111 Penny.  The Equinox should have got that but there was iron down the hole so it took the hammered out.  This happens a lot on my test bed - if I have a nail on the surface and a non ferrous target at say 8'', then no detector will pick it up except a GPX (this is the only detector I have tried that will do it).  The amount of finds we are all walking over every time we go out is frightening!

I will be doing a lot of tests on this in the future and it will be featured soon on my new test bed results graph.  How many times have you planted a find in a field then cannot pick it up again?

Lee shouted me over for the next signal.  It gave me a mixed signal - ferrous/non ferrous and that's exactly what it was, a piece of iron down the hole and a lead pot mend at 15'' ... hmm, more experiments needed.  I tried a number of other signals and I got them, some hardly gave a signal but that taught me what a deep dodgy signal sounded like.  First mission completed.  May need a lot of experience to perfect!

Now i needed to find a way of sorting the signals out amongst the vast amount of large pieces of iron on the field, that was quickly done although it was more luck than judgment.  I changed from Multitone to 2 tone, slowed down and bingo!  The field suddenly became alive with signals.  I was easily able to identify the iron and pick loads of non ferrous signals out amongst them and did not dig another piece of iron all day.

Having spent several hours on my test bed I can easily see how some detectorists out here may think the Equinox is not that great and resell it.  Unless you get the correct settings it's very average.

26/6/18

I have spent loads of time creating our new test bed, using my Minelab CTX 3030 and Equinox to help me out, hopefully it will be up and running in the next two weeks then i can start to publish the results on our website.

I am getting a few surprises using just the two detectors during the set up so who knows what will follow?

I will be testing every detector i get my hands on , with every coil option i can find.

One result i found surprising today was  my George 111 Halfpenny test, i have buried them at 6'' though to 14'', before today the CTX was getting the Halfpenny at 12' and the Equinox at 10'' so i presumed the CTX was deeper on high conductive targets, wrong , i planted a  halfpenny at 13'', the CTX and Equinox both got it, the reason the Equinox did not get the 11'' and 12'' George 111 Halfpennies is that there is a small piece of iron down the hole, the Equinox homed in on the iron and rejected the coin, the CTX ignored the iron and got the Halfpenny, interesting!

I spent  ages down one hole  removing all the bits of iron that the Equinox picked up and i still missed a bit, resulting in the Equinox not finding the target.
4/7/18
Finished my test bed now and have started to test detectors today, results will be announced soon and will be on going.

10/7/18
Should be getting the first results published in the next few weeks, testing loads of Detectors, i am finding some of the so called 'top end' detectors are not that great!

28/7/18

Just got back  from a week on Anglesey (North Wales) did about an hours detecting every day
I took several detectors but as normal ran out of time to use them all.
I mainly used the Equinox, total items dug up for the week was 102 pieces of junk (Aluminium e.t.c, finds were , one Silver chain, a lead fishing weight, 3 x £1 coins,a pair of Calvin Klein Glasses, a Silver ring, and a purse containing 5 pennies a Shilling and a Sixpence ,all George IV, the purse was about 12'' down in the black sand.

03/8/18

I find the Equinox a very interesting , quirky detector, it's fairly unpredictable and you get quite different results depending on what program you use.

One of the things that jumped out from the advertising campaign was its ability to find chains, there must be tens of thousands scattered around our coastline waiting to be found, there has never really been a detector made that will find them.

Before we went on holiday recently i thought I'd do a few experiments on my test bed, a Gold Chain was buried that i thought was about average, at 2'', i tried several more and they all gave me a VDI number of 1
This is the area where Coke is detected and i would be rejected on the fields i go on, not a problem i thought, because on a beach there would not be any coke so i could accept all the number ones.

I use field 2 on land and thought i would use the same on the beach, wrong, it gave false signals everywhere all the false signals were number ones.

Not a problem, i will just put it in Beach mode, great, no false signals but in Beach mode it will not pick up gold chains???? it totally rejects them?

Surely chains will normally be found on a beach but it will not pick them up in beach mode? and i cannot use it in any other mode.
Please let me know if i am missing something here?

All Minelabs reject Coke and none of them with give a signal on a Gold Chain, you do not have the option to accept coke and Gold chains,  the Equinox has now given you the option to accept coke and Gold chains on land, how many pieces of Coke do you think you might have to dig up before you get a gold chain, i think if you have been detecting for a while you will know the answer to that one!


16/8/18

Nearly in a position to list the first lot of test results, i have started with the Minelab Safari/Explorer 11/ Explorer SE and E-Trac, mainly because i have them all in stock at the moment and i have 10 coils in that will fit them all.
So after over 900  tests i will be listing the results in the next few days.

After will be Garrett Ace 250/300i/400i because i have them all in stock and 5 coils here at the moment. These tests will shock you!
So my tests are decided by my stock at the time.
If you are in to stats/comparisons e.t.c  you should find it all very interesting, the coil tests will be a very useful guide and will help you decide which coil will make a difference to your detector, and will probably save you money!

30/8/18

Due to a large influx of detectors and bits and pieces in the last week or two i have not had much time to list many test results but hopefully i will be able to this week.
Tested about 40 detectors so far , just found two detector/coil combos that give better all round performance than the top end Minelabs!
One was the Nokta Impact fitted with the 15'' Coil, and by far the best is the Nexus Standard MK11 , i tested this with the 6'' coil and did not have targets on my test bed deep or challenging enough to test it to it's full potential ,i didn't even bother with the 9'' Coil !

I also tried two very popular , big selling detectors that i have not really tested before on a test bed, they  were dire, totally over priced and uninspiring,
In fact one was so bad i could not understand why some detectorists used them, i spent two hours testing it because i did not believe it was so bad, i went online to see how other users set them up, seems i had already sussed out the best settings, maybe i had a dodgy one ? so i tried another i had in stock, just as bad.
I am not saying they will not find  it's what a Detector misses is what i am looking  at,
If you are in an area that is full of targets and it's all ploughed, then most detectors will do the job and you will wonder what all the fuss is about, unfortunately that is not the case where we go detecting , we need every signal we can get!

Another observation , while testing all these coils and detectors, i did not realise that small coils were fairly useless among iron, i'm not saying all of them are. just 90%, it's always been my belief and most people's that small coils were great for winkling targets out among iron, although i personally have always had more success with larger coils.
So it looks like the only use for small coils is for use in areas where it is difficult to use a larger coil

As for elliptical coils i have never understood what the point of these are, not great among iron and no depth!

2/9/18

Just a thought , if an after market coil is better than the original stock coil (which it normally is) then why can't the manufacture of the detector make one as good in the 1st place? why can't they make a larger range of coils? they designed the detector in the 1st place so surely they have the technology.

What happened to the trade descriptions act ?  just tested a detector today that claimed on the box it would 'open up all my worked out sites' no it won't , it was dire.

I remember on the Fisher F19 box it says something like ' the best relic detector ever ' no it wasn't, not ever close!
4/9/18

Larger coils are definitely better among iron than smaller ones, that seems like a weird statement  but that is what i have found during my testing.

I tried a detector on my old test bed about a year ago, alarm bells sounded in my head, there was something special about it, i sold it before i could test it properly.
Then my test bed went belly up and i never did get a chance.
Anyway, new test bed, just had another one in, so time to try it again.
What a awesome detector, effortlessly picked up most of the targets on the test bed.
Then i remembered i had a 13'' Detech Ultimate coil in stock, i put it on and it just got better, it is now is the best detector i have tested
I have only spent 20 mins on it so it could be even better once i have gone though the settings, all i have done so far is to put it into the coin and Jewellery program and wack the sensitivity up
This one will be joining me one my next outing!

Bet you can't guess which detector this could be, it's not an odd ball detector made in someone's shed
It's a mass produced detector made by one of the big detector manufacturers , it seems to have gone under the radar, maybe the manufactures don't know how good it is ? No advertising campaign , no claims of awesomeness
this is it, click here
8/9/18

We have decided to take a break from detector sales for a while, we have two very successful and growing companies unfortunately this leaves us with very little spare time to live!
So in the near future we will be concentrating on covers and reducing the numbers of detectors we have for sale
Thank you for your continued support.

We will of course be continuing the detector tests.

12/9/18

Spent a while today with the Equinox and the Gold chain /Coke problem i had before, i found that Field 1 allowed me to get a gold chain whilst rejecting most coke, also i changed the iron bias from 6 to 2 on the beach mode, this allowed me to also pick up the gold chain, result!

Did an Equinox versus Deus test today, the Equinox was better overall but the Deus had a 9'' HF coil fitted so it will be a fairer test when i have the 11'' Deus on to match the Equinox.

The Deus did not let me down, and continued to drive me mad and further convince me it's the detector i least trust out of any detector i have ever used. sometimes i take it out and it's awesome, next time i can take it out the same site it's useless?

Today during my George 111 halfpenny test it managed to miss the 9'' 10'' and 11'' targets and it picked up the 12'' Halfpenny?? why? How? The Deus will find you plenty but i think it misses loads.
as for discrimination the new 'deep program' which features squiggly lines all over the screen when deep iron is located, yes it does that but you also lose all the low conductive stuff as well that also give you the same squiggly lines.In terms of discrim, stick to the horseshoe.

I tried the Whites MX Sports again today having declaring  last week it was awesome, i only tested it for 5 mins at the time
Today i gave it another hour to try to get more out of it, and decided i got it right first time and Coin and Jewellery was the way to go, it's better than anything thing i tested so far.

14/9/18

I did the Equinox update today, quick and easy to do, not sure it's any different than before. not 100% sure what it was supposed to do, someone told me it improved it's ability to find coins on edge.

I have no idea why i have never done any tests on coins on edge before, seems to be an obvious thing to do , so that's going to be one of my next projects.

15/9/18

Tried the Equinox on my Test bed today and the update seems to have made a difference, it finds 2 targets that it did not find before, a Cartwheel Penny at 16'' and a Gold earring at 2'' that only 3 Detectors have managed to detect before.
21/9/18

I had a Whites XLT in today as a part ex, i used one myself for 5 years in the 90's, i did find loads with it, but it's frightening what i used to miss, took it on the test bed, Whites are normally totally useless anywhere near iron so it was not too surprising to see the results, it managed 2 out of 10 on the iron tests and one of those was hit and miss!

I don't see many Whites , considering the amount of different models out there
I can get a good idea of the best selling most popular detectors out here by the amount of covers i sell, best seller by far at the moment is the Equinox, followed by the Minelab CTX and Garrett AT Pro also selling a lot of Tesoro 
U -max at the moment and Garrett ace.
Worst selling covers are the AKA Sorex about one per year compared to the Equinox at about 70 per week , one extreme to the other. are Sorex's a bit thin on the ground or do AKA owners not buy covers?

23/9/18

Had a good day today used my Equinox, 1st signal was a Henry V111 Half groat following within a hour two medieval buckles.
This was on a field that had been battered for 20 years by us, using several different top end detectors
On this particular field i dug 9 holes the last time i was on it 2 years ago, dug over 20 today using the Equinox, no Coke on the field so was able to dig number 1's and 2's these targets were mainly small pieces of lead and sliver paper, we are told if we get a dodgy signal then test it by trying it on 10khz if the signal is not stable it then reject it, i tried that, good job i ignored that info otherwise i would have not dug a lot, and there would be 2 medieval buckles still in the ground!
The Equinox takes some getting used to in terms or what to dig and what not to dig, if in doubt dig it!

29/9/18

Having a big sort out at the moment of all the stuff i have knocking about, most of it is being put on e-bay,
I have decided in the future i will be just selling Detectors and Covers, so anything else i have is up for grabs., I will still take anything in part ex but will not buy anything in unless its a detector and before i do that i need to get the stock level down to around 15 but it's one in , one out ,at the moment due to part ex's

16/10/18

Just back from a week on Anglesey ,we are currently walking the coastal path (very slowly) problem is when you go away you totally forgot what you have in stock and you return to a barrage of phone calls and e-mails asking you questions you have forgotten the answers to! it takes a few days to get back into it again.
Detected a bit while away but as normal did not find a lot, loads of Aluminium and similar, i do like detecting on beaches but it seems you have to dig 100 bits of junk up to get a find.
Only saw one person detecting while on Hols , you could tell he was an Equinox owner from a mile away, he was standing in the same place for about 10 mins trying to correct his headphones!
28/10/18

Just need to quash rumours that we are packing up, we have stopped buying in at the moment to allow us to catch up with the vast amount of stuff we have in stock which we do not have up for sale, no point in continually buying everything that is offered to us if we do not have time to do anything with it.

We have over 100 coils in stock , they are getting more and more difficult to sell with not a lot of profit, same goes with most other accessories, they need to be sold on e-bay to get a sale, 10% e-bay fees, free postage,VAT,Paypal fees and there is nothing left!

We have no intention of packing up but there will be be a bit of tweaking to create time and space

Once we have caught up then we will start to buy again, but we only be buying detectors not accessories, All accessories will be taken in part ex as normal

Only detectors that will sell will be purchased , we will not be buying in any 'odd ball' detectors.
We will not be having a vast amount of detectors in stock , probably about 25, instead of 50 to 80 which as been the norm in the past.

There is just too many detectors to choose from nowadays , some companies seem to bring one or several out every month, must be a nightmare for anyone coming in to the hobby with all manufacturer's claiming their latest creation is the best thing since sliced bread.

3/11/18

Bought myself a new Nokta/Makro Anfibio it arrived today along with two 15'' Equinox coils, one for me one for Lee (who i detect with), so i got a couple of new toys to play with!
Two reasons why i bought the Anfibio
1/ I need to get covers made for them
2/ I have heard that they are better than the Equinox or is that another of the many claims made by manufacturer's, we shall see!

I shall be detecting tomorrow (Sunday) with my Equinox complete with new 15'' coil fitted and also i will be taking the Anfibio out for a run.

1st impressions  today (10 mins on test bed) having used the Equinox since March and having put a lot of hours in on a test bed i know exactly what it is capable of with the stock 11' coil fitted, i attached the 15'' coil to see how much difference it made, most noticeable was it was better at detecting non ferrous items among iron than the 11'' coil, in terms of depth about 5% better , it got the same targets only slightly better.

Thought I'd give the Anfibio a quick go (5 mins), not knowing what i was doing or trying to find out the best settings or even looking at the manual i found it was noticeably better than the Equinox on low conductive targets but not as good on High conductive targets.
So more to follow on that when i have time to test it properly.

10/11/18
I had a go with the Anfibio, it lasted all of 20 minute's before being thrown back in the car!
reason being i could not see the menu without my glasses and because i had gloves on i pressed 2 or 3 buttons at the same time because they are so small and close together, so not ideal for those of us who wear gloves and cannot see.
I shall have another go when i have my glasses on and it's warm enough to not wear gloves!

I also tried the Equinox 15'' coil in the field, i do not like big coils so it had to be a lot better /deeper than the standard 11'' coil to convince me ,it was neither after an hour i put my 11'' coil back on again.

24/11/18

My Anfibio as gone to to have covers made up for it so hopefully i can get them up for sale soon.
I am selling everything i have lying around at the moment , i am putting it all on e-bay , some at a buy it now price and some on auction, i have 18 years of bits and bobs so have a look to see if there is anything you need
http://www.ebaystores.co.uk/staffordshiremetaldetectors

I have decided to keep the Anfibio for a while or longer if i get to like it, when i get it back.
My own personal detector armory will then consist of Minelab Equinox.E-trac,GPX 5000, CTX 3030, Deus and the Anfibio.

All the detectors i have offer something different, unfortunately there is not a detector out there that does everything, although the Equinox is close.

I tried the Minelab GPX 5000 on my Test bed for the first time the other day, it was of course better than anything else , but it did miss a low conductive cut quarter and a gold chain ,both are the same conductivity as coke, this is the same throughout the Minelab range of detectors, they all ignore coke but reject everything in the same conductivity range, the Equinox can find similar items but only if you accept coke, no problem on most of my sites (no coke) but a nightmare for most other detectorists

Even a Garrett Ace 250 can reject coke and find something in the same conductivity range

So what we are doing now is detecting on all our old detecting hot spots that we have battered with Explorers,E-tracs,CTXs and GPX's with the Equinox and are getting results!


5/12/18

Still having a big clear out, most of the stuff i have is now on e-bay, maybe another 50 items to list then i can just concentrate on Covers and a few detectors, still not created any extra time by cutting back but i'm sure we will get there, loads of covers going out at the moment, ideal Christmas presents!
Still using the Equinox every week despite having 6 other detectors, managed to get 40 signals on a small area that had been battered with all my other detectors over the last year,not the best among iron, just different.

11/12/18
Found another 300 plus metal Metal Detector related items i forgot about ,so loads more ebay listings to follow mainly low cost bits and pieces, battery doors, decals, battery pods , mounting brackets and the like so if you are after something have a look, there are some rare items for sale.
after i have put everything up for sale i plan to have a rest from  Detector sales for a while to concentrate on the  'Pro-tectors' Covers side of the business and to free up some time.
I will be putting loads of info on the website, field tests, manuals , tests,  all sorts of things. hopefully i will be able to start all this over Christmas, hopefully you will find it all interesting.
Sorry to see Tesoro have recently disappeared off the detector map, not surprising really they never really moved forward , in fact they got steadily whose,  the Silver Sabre that appeared in 1984 or thereabouts was about as good as it got, in the 90's we got the Laser B1 (Bandido) and Laser B3 (Silver sabre 11) the Rapier (Silver Sabre U-max) the Eldorado, Golden Sabre, Conquistador , there were loads of them all exactly the same in performance, just sprayed a different colour and  the knobs were moved around! then came the high freq versions Cibola/Vaquero/Tejon that became the Trident 1 /Trident 2 and Tejon pro which were sprayed black and had £100 put on the price tag and are magnets with a horrible tone (my opinion) i know there are loads of detectorists out there that still use them, lightweight, simple to use are the two pluses ,downside is they are not very good by today's standards, i used a Laser B1 in the 90's on some good sites it's frightening what i walked over, If i had to use one now i would give up detecting.
One of the last detectors Tesoro made was the Mojave. what an embarrassment, its dire.

12/12/18

Bought a XP ORX today, it will arrive tomorrow so look out for my thoughts on it!
I chose the 9'' Version with Wireless headphones.
I just need it to model detector covers on, they use the same covers as the Deus so at least we don't have to create a new cover.
I used to just wait until i got a second-hand one in but now i have slowed down to a snails pace on the Detector sales it's easier to just buy every new one that comes out, gets the covers sorted then sell it again, of course after testing!
Not had any feedback at all yet on the ORX, don't know anything at all about it
Watch this space!

17/12/18

Got my ORX on Friday, unfortunately the stem is different to the Deus, so i need a new upper stem cover made, life would be so much easier if manufacturers used the same stems and control boxes on similar detectors.
Looking at it from a cleaning point of view , it's a nightmare, ( i spend a lot of time cleaning second-hand detectors) 
See picture below, imagine trying to get mud out of all those holes in the stem!

it looks set to replace the Teknetics T2/Fisher F75 coil as number one cleaning nightmare!
Not had a go with the ORX in the field yet only 5 mins on my test bed, i instantly liked it, may be a keeper! although i can't really justify keeping all these detectors, i have only used the Equinox since March.
Hopefully in the near future i will have the chance to use them all.
just spent the last 12 months trying to down size, business wise, probably got around 50 items left to put up for sale then i can start to move forward and hopefully will have time to do other things, i want to get all the detector tests i have done put on the website, hopefully over Christmas.

24/12/18
We'd Just like to wish all Detectorists out there a very Merry Christmas, hope you manage to get out there and find a few bits over the next week!
Went out last on Sunday (yesterday) to another battered area where every detector has been used in the past including my GPX 5000, dug 35 non ferrous targets and one ferrous with the Equinox, 90% of the none ferrous were bits of lead/copper half the size of an air rifle pellet , i got one Fibula and the none ferrous find was a Saxon Knife.it was found in a 5 square yard area where we have previously found around 12 other Saxon items, Saxon finds are very rare around here.
Lee found a Denarius, Roman Iron bell and half a fibula
A lot of the iron artefact's we find are in excellent condition, we detect on permanent pasture that as never being disturbed and as never had any fertiliser's put on it.
The iron Saxon Knife i found only gave a signal from one direction this was because it had a small copper hilt

 Not quite sure why the Equinox is opening up all our old 'hot spots' again, need to do some more tests.

It just seems to be different to anything else out there.

I took my newly acquired ORX out for a trial but it never stopped raining all day and it was just like a mud bath, not much pleasure in testing new detectors when it's like that.

Silly season is in full flow, just received first negative on e-bay of the season from a Russian guy who was a bit cheesed off because the £24 set of covers i sold to him did not include the £800,00 AKA Sorex, ironic really as the Sorex is Russian !

03/01/19

Happy New Year everyone

My last outing of the year gave the worst percentages i have every had on a finds to rubbish ratio, 65 holes dug,  i got one button , everything else was a cartridge case or a piece of lead, lets hope we all get great results on the 1st outing of this year
My very first signal of last year was a James 11 half groat, then it all went down hill from there!
I used my Equinox so my ORX is still waiting for it's first outing, maybe this Sunday, 

Detector tests will be updated in the next couple of days

6/01/19

Let me explain how we detect , we have thousands of acres to go at, 99% permanent pasture, we wander around until we find a hot spot, this may be a Medieval /Saxon /or Roman dwelling, we then batter the area until we consider it empty then we move on .in between finding these hot spots we of course find isolated , random finds these keep us going until we find the next hot spot which could be 6 months away, meanwhile a new all singing all  dancing detector may be available , meaning we can go back to all our old' hot spots' and find stuff we missed before, this is what we are doing at the moment with the Equinox's.
Amazing really how so many targets can be missed, i was detecting on a field on Sunday i dug 45 non ferrous targets in an area  that is probably our most battered   ever, every detector has been over the 50 sq yards i spent all day on, several times, nothing great turned up mainly bits of lead , 2 buttons , a fragment of a Fibula and a musket ball. All my detectors are chosen because they do a different job, next up the XP ORX!
First time i had used it, it had to be different so i put it on deep coin program and 54khz, thought id try it on the top of the field first , this area is full on iron but not much top soil, the field came alive , there were signals everywhere, nice two way clear signals the id's coming in at 60/70/85/95 all high conductive  signals , now there would never be anything on the field that would be high in conductivity so i dug the targets up being pretty sure the signals were iron, yes they were , i dug about 10 really good signals up , all bits of horseshoe or flat iron, the iron probability meter at the bottom of the screen failed to notice the iron so i started to ignore the high conductive signals and started to look for the low conductive signals i got two bits of foil so that was the way to go!
After a spot of lunch i went out of the iron infested area and continued with the ORX i was really enjoying using it thought id do a depth test, i found a couple of very vague deep signals with the ORX , these were signals that were pushing it to it's limits, very scratchy faint signals , no target id, went over them with the equinox and got a nice clear two way signal with a VDI number on the screen, one was a musket ball , the other an air rifle pellet needless to say the ORX went back in the car, not much point using it when the Equinox is clearly better on the deeper soil
The Deus and ORX would be really good detectors if the discrim worked beyond 6'', detectorists who use these these machines must be leaving so much stuff in the ground, but I'm trying to get it to do something that it's not happy with, it probably excels on ploughed land and dry sand.

I'll take it out again this week on normal ground where i think it will be fine with normal iron conditions , we don't have too many areas on our permissions that have loads of flat iron on them , i have to avoid these areas with my GPX as well, the Equinox E-Trac and CTX seem to handle it ok.
Got my wireless headphones today for it, great! The Wireless headphones on all XP detectors are probably the best i have used.

13/01/19

We went back to one of our hotspots on Sunday , windy and raining , the 'hotspot' consists of  Medieval fish ponds in the middle of nowhere ,we found a few Tudor bits there down the steep bank side  so over the last year we have been digging the bank side out to the depth of 3 feet then detecting though the spoil , not much Tudor stuff around here so it's a bit of a novelty ,we have not found vast amounts but everything we have found is Tudor, mainly spectacle buckles , a couple of hammered, several jettons, an earring and quite a lot of Tudor Pottery and a few more bits.
I dug for 3 hours yesterday without a single signal, i ended up with 3 unidentified items and a Large Tudor pin.
The soil is full of nails and  not many non ferrous bits, the Equinox and ORX were used and the ORX probably gave the best results, it's very hard hitting on shallow low conductive targets.
The ORX gave me a reading of 26  on the Tudor pin ,on the Deus 26 would have been a piece of coke so i had to investigate it further today, i ran the ORX over a piece of coke on my test bed it gave me a read out of 2, so it is a lot different than the Deus discrim wise.
I did a full test on it while i was on my test bed , it was as deep if not deeper than the Deus, and it actually made a difference when i ground balanced it.
Discrim (screen wise) was inaccurate beyond  8'' so you need your ears to work out what your target may be, signals beyond 8'' could be anything, it's easy on a test bed because you know what the targets are.
Another thing i noticed was when i was going nice and slow over my test bed and was able to pick out the low conductive signals with a nice  clear loud two way signal as soon as i speeded up to what i would say was a normal detecting speed 90% of the test bed targets were lost, frightening !
I found the only targets to be detected were the deep signals?

23/1/19

 Out on Sunday as normal, went on a pasture field i have detected on for the last 20 years, off and on to see if the Equinox could open it up again , two halfpennies and 6  buttons and overall 40 none ferrous signals were found, the Equinox was having a bad day with EMI's until the fog cleared so had to use the ORX in between, what a nightmare, , no idea what i was digging, half the 'good signals' were iron, 90% of the low conductive signals were non ferrous, 90% of the high conductive signal were ferrous, bought the X35 11''coil for it today, did a few tests and found he 9'' High freq coil was better when run at 54khz than the 11' run at 25kz, so the X35 Coil will be up for sale soon, i also found the 9'' round High freq coil was he best on the Deus

28/01/19

Best find on Sunday was a William 111 sixpence love token, and loads of other bits and pieces, i was using the Equinox , the field we were on was very busy and there were signals everywhere , i prefer to use the Equinox on sites that are well battered. the average field just has too much going on and there are signals everywhere it was very erratic for most of the day, EMI's, then the back light packed up , so it's off to MSR today for a repair/replacement , Steve's super quick so hopefully i will have it sorted by next weekend, if not i have a back up Equinox to replace it.

Spent a while on my test bed yesterday with the Makro Anfibio my thoughts below

Pros

Well made, all the options are on the screen instead of having to scroll though menus, excellent depth , better on low conductive targets than high conductive targets

Cons

Passed all the iron tests but not too convincingly , had to be made to find several of them, all the menus are on the screen instead of having to scroll though menus, great if you have good eyesight or detect in glasses ,loads of buttons on the front because of this they are too small and if you have big fingers or wear gloves you will hit several of them at the same time , that is if you can see them!

Like most detectors the readout on the screen disappears after a certain depth, you do not get a readout on deeper targets , so it’s ears only.

Is not able to find very low conductive targets without digging coke.
The bigger coil like on most detectors does not really improve the depth but will of course covers more ground, trade off is the weight.


8/2/19
Over the last 10 years or so we have had numbers flashing upon our screens giving us an incite in to what the actual find might be (or not) i am often asked what number is a hammered on a CTX or whatever ,my normal answer is a hammered can be anything from zero to 50 or whatever your maximum score may be,all depends on the size of the coin and the conductivity of the metal ,Metal detecting is not an exact science all a Metal detector does is to give you a readout on the conductivity of a piece of metal, the higher the number the
higher the conductivity, so a Charles 1 Halfcrown is going to give you a much higher tone/number than a cut quarter of a Medieval penny (this example is one extreme to the other)
It's not rocket science but apparently escapes a lot of people
So if you get what you think is a non ferrous signal , dig it up it could be anything! 

There are of course exceptions , if you are on a beach or Park , whatever and the last twenty signals you have dug are a number 24 and they were all ring pulls then there is a good chance that the next one will be a ring pull as well, but it could also be a gold ring or a 20 pence, both give similar readout, so it's a trade off really depends if you want to dig a 100 rings in the hope that one may be a gold ring, there are only so many things you can find on a beach so numbers on screens may be of some use, put not on Farmland where a signal could be anything., i have had detectors in and when i look at how they are set up to reject loads of targets it's frightening, there must be be so much being left in the ground  

 

17/2/19

My detecting friend Lee has retired from the hobby; we have only missed a handful of Sunday’s in the last 10 years or so, he had been detecting for about 30 years or so

So on my own now, no shortage of land to go at i’ll just keep on plugging away, someone’s got to do it!

It’s nice to go detecting with someone like minded, but i don’t mind detecting on my own.

I have other detecting friends that are nice enough to invite me out, but it’ on their land which does not mean the same, it’s not so much about the finds, i just like to detect in an area that has been a ‘project’ to us for years, if i find something it’s a bonus.

I will accept the odd invite, so i will not become a total recluse!

One such invite was followed up on yesterday thanks to the kind invite of a Blog reader!
A friend and i travelled 100 miles to see how the other half detect!

Steve (not real name) and two detecting buddies had a far greater journey than us to get there but they had been there for the weekend, land in question is in Lincolnshire


We started out on a few permanent pasture fields (a bit rare in Lincs) the soil was very sandy and very deep, cartridge cases were a foot down, so no idea how deep the older stuff was.

I then wandered across a grass field that had been ploughed and reseeded and remembered why i hate reseeded pasture, took me half an hour to extract a jam Jar lid though thick clay at 18’’

I’m sure it does not bother most Detectorists but i will only detect on Permanente Pasture or Plough/Stubble, i hate it when it’s in between e.g. Silage fields.

They seem to always be full of junk, not so bad if they were last ploughed in the War because most of those fields around here were only ploughed to a depth of 7’’ or so and there were not loads of aluminium about to bury, but I’m sure it depends whereabouts in the country you are.


We then went on a pasture field near a Church/Centre of the Village, i love fields like this the field had produced loads of hammered coins in the past, so i presumed most, if not all of the obvious signals had gone, leaving just deep and dodgy signals, i see this as a challenge, a field such as this could never be emptied so there will without a doubt be loads more stuff on it, it’s just about finding the technique and detector to unlock it.

So off i went using the Equinox, my friend was using an E-Trac.

Steve had found a Mary Groat the day before at 14’’ with his Equinox on the field.

I wandered very slowly across the field, this normally brings it to life, got a couple of coke cans at a foot and realised it had probably been ploughed about 30 to 40 years ago, i was expecting low conductive deep signals to jump out but nothing?

Next i tried the ‘’get as close to the fence as possible’ method, this area is normally untouched so i get a chance to see what the field was like before it was detected on several times, i got a 4th Century Bronze, 2’’ down, probably having come to the surface as the coke can went in the opposite direction, i got a few other signals, but not a great deal.

Most of the detectorists out there will be used to this and not really know any different.

Where i detect the ground as never been disturbed so the Coke can is on the surface and the Roman bronze at a foot, Victorian stuff at 5’’ Georgian at 6’’ and Medieval at 10’’, all give or take an inch or two. Everything in the correct order, so the deeper it is the older it is, the deeper the better!

I have over the years spoke to many 1000’s of detectorists and a lot of them say they are not interested in depth and only want to dig in the top few inches, never really got my head around that one, until now, not spent a lot of time detecting in Lincs, maybe a couple of days, but the vast amount of huge fields , most of which are ploughed or have been in recent times is mind blowing, you could never cover some of them in several life times, and every year it’s ploughed again and becomes a different field, of course you still have to wander around and try to find the hot spots, which will be few and far between i’m sure, so to get a very kind invite out and to be put on a field that has produced good finds in the past cuts out the years of leg work and puts me in with more than a fighting chance of taking something nice home is great and very much appreciated.

I just need to change my mind set for the day,

So the next trick i use is the ‘next to the road ‘one, where you go as close as possible to the road , which everyone avoids with good reason normally, main reason is of course that all the coke cans and similar chucked out of car windows with be sitting there, and in this case will have been ploughed in, i stuck that for 10 mins, nightmare, if i was there for a year i would get them all out but, i have only a day to find something, so the next trick ‘under electric cables’ the Guys that have been detecting on the field for years have used Deus’s so the chances are all the stuff anywhere near the cables will still be under the ground, Steve had just found another Hammered under the cables with the Equinox, they don’t seem to be bothered by electrical interference as much, he also got his Mary Groat in the same area the day before, so i spent the next half an hour under the cable, i got a few bits of Lead and Musket ball.

Normally with more time i would have tried another detector, probably the GPX 5000 to see if that opened it up, i knew i was walking over finds, just never found the key on this occasion, when it does happen normally the field comes alive and you cannot move for signals, it can be something simple like changing your sweep speed.

Time to have a go on another field before we went home

Steve took us to a recently turned over stubble field where loads of hammered and similar had been found in the past, from all periods of time.

I love it when someone puts me on a field like that; all i needed was a signal then i stood a good chance of getting my 1st hammered of the year.

Steve pointed out a small area that many Elizabeth Hammered had been found in the past, i put the Equinox in all metal and just got bombarded with mineral and iron signals, i slowed down to a snail’s pace and bang, 1st hammered of the year about 1’’ down, i was not going to get much depth on the field due to mineralisation and iron which would have masked the non ferrous signals, a few seconds later a Rose Farthing, then a piece of lead followed 10 mins later a Charles 1st Half Groat, meanwhile my friend found an Edward Penny in another part of the field.

Normally the GPX 5000 at this stage would now be kicked in, ideal conditions for it, but time to go home

Great end to a pleasant and enlightening day

Thank you Steve and friends

1/3/19


last Sunday I decided to go to a farm we got permission on about 18 months ago but have never detected on,i  used the Equinox as per usual , this Farm is in the back of beyond and no one in their right mind would ever bother with it, like most of the land i detect on really.
Got my first signal after an hour, it was a 1921 penny, followed by a few 17th Century buttons, then i hit a hoard of 303 cases and bullets this theme continued throughout the day, time to go home, there was a small rocky limestone outcrop next to where i had parked the Freelander and i had a feeling about it all day , thought i would end the day on it,  first signal  a Denarius of Marcus Aurelius, half an hour looking for more resulted in zero signals.
I need to go back next week me thinks!

 

3/3/19

Just done a test on he XP ORX, resuts with be up loaded tomorrow, using the 9'' HF coil and the 11'' X35 Coil

I bought an ORX a few months ago to get covers made for it, i do this with most new detectors that hit the street.

Even lighter than the Deus, but i don’t like the new stem, looks cheap and the holes in the plastic at the back will be a pig to clean.

Mine is fitted with the 9’’ HF coil , this is what I consider the best coil, and is what I use on my Deus

I like the no frills, hard hitting performance and i used it several times with good results, i decided to keep it and to sell my Deus, it actual gave consistent results the first two times i took it out, my pet hate with the Deus is that it seems to have its own agenda and can work differently every time i take it out, even when using the same settings on the same site.

The third time i took it out, same field, same settings, i could not stop finding coke, i had never dug any before with it? And i could not stop digging iron the week after?

Thought it was too good to be true

So the honeymoon period was over and i started to think logically

It’s got 4 programs on it, two are for Gold Prospecting, the other two, ‘Coin fast’ is completely useless and will seriously reduce your finds, leaving the ‘Coin Deep’ this is great and gives top performance without having to twiddle with loads of settings.

So here i am about to sell my Deus to replace it with ORX with exactly the same performance as my Deus with less options, hmmm

Looks like the Deus is staying, if I were buying an XP for the 1st time then it would be the ORX, because I don’t need the multiple setting options the Deus gives me, although some might, when I get a detector I tend to set it up to its optimum performance then not really touch it again, except for the odd tweak.

If you have an XP Deus then pointless changing, if you are an XP 1st timer then save a load of £’s and get the ORX , unless of course you have loads of money and like to twiddle with settings!

19/3/19

I used my CTX last Sunday , 1st time for over a year, on the same farm i found my Denarius on a couple of weeks ago,i have been on the same farm for the last two weeks, and found loads of 303 shells, presume it was used by the home guard for practice, also loads of 12 bore cartridge ends, 22 shells and bullets, no doubt there will be a few nice bits amongst the ordinance, but how much of this stuff can you dig in the hope of one of of the signals may be something of interest ?
Then i start to ignore signals, the 303  shells give me a readout of 26, the bullets 23, the 12 bore ends 13/14 15 , the .22 shells 4 , this is where my head goes  , i never leave signals ,but i cannot cope with digging another bullet up, we have all been there, time to go home.

Equinox owners make sure you dig some of the weird signals you sometimes get , mostly they are non ferrous signals, the Equinox seems to find odd ball items that other detectors miss.
I much prefer using the Equinox on totally worked out hot spots on normal sites that have not been battered most detectors will do the job, the Equinox is the next detector i would use as well as the GPX 5000

11/4/19
Not a lot has been found since my last entry
The week before last i went on a 100 sq yard area where i had previously been detected on many times, i have founds loads of bits from Roman though to modern, the area is popular with tourists so lots of Silver paper and ring pulls to detect.
I used the equinox in the morning and was trying to not dig anything under a readout of 10 because it is 99% Silver paper, i hate leaving signals but on certain sites it's got to be done otherwise it will drive you mad, I found a few pre-decimal coins and a few buttons. but zero Silver paper
In the afternoon i used my Deus, loads of iron was being dug with the odd non-ferrous find, i went on the Silver paper hot spot and i decided to dig everything above a read out of 40 under (40 is normally silver paper or similar) that’s when I remembered how bad the discrimination is on a Deus, I dug about 30 pieces of foil coming in at numbers from 40 to 90, the Deus can be deep and match most detectors on the market but the discrimination Is dire and that should be where XP try to improve , also an 11’’ HF coil would be a good addition because the 9’’ HF coil at the moment is the best of all the coils