Experienced Beach Hunters Only - My Equinox 800 sucks, What should I replace it with?
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Thread: Experienced Beach Hunters Only - My Equinox 800 sucks, What should I replace it with?

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  1. #1

    Aug 2013
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    41 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Experienced Beach Hunters Only - My Equinox 800 sucks, What should I replace it with?

    Before all the EQ800 owners mob me please hear me out. I am a lot more mature than my title. I think... Anyway I have been silver hunting for many years and would consider myself one of the best. My primary silver seekers are the ctx and etrac. My last push to find a lot of silver netted me 136 silvers in less than 3 months using the CTX. I believe the key to being productive while metal detecting is detecting efficiently. By hunting efficiently what I mean is:

    1. Ability to distinguish ferrous from non ferrous targets easily at any depth. This is accomplished using the FE numbers on CTX and Etrac. (detector and user)
    2. Ability to define desired target and discriminate out unwanted targets with minimal loss of performance (depth, signal consistency, etc...). (detector)
    3. Ability to identify targets using audio and visual information to ďskipĒ unwanted targets. (detector provides info, user deciphers info)
    4. Quickly determining if a site is productive or not and moving on quickly if itís not. (user)

    Using the above info I have had a lot of success and Iím content with my abilities to hunt on land. Now that my horn is tooted I could really use some help with beach hunting. I recently moved to Florida and would like to find gold. If life was simple I would be able to take my CTX and kill it on gold but life is never simple. The CTX is a great machine on silver but to say it kindly it sucks on gold. I understand why but no need to go into details on that.

    Now I am on a mission to find the CTX equivalent for lower conductivity targets such as gold. When the Minelab EQ 800 was released I was super excited and optimistic. Now that Iíve used it for a while I am in search of a new machine. The main issue with the eq800 is that is cannot distinguish ferrous targets from non ferrous targets (ie rusty bottle caps). I know I know someone will chime in and say the following:
    - You can change the hunting frequency and the numbers will jump. Yes this is true for a mode such as park 2 which works great on dry sand. Even using Park 2 I do not want to check every target by changing the frequency. That is extremely inefficient. Park 2 is also too unstable to get any real depth on wet sand. On wet salty sand running beach 1 you canít change the frequency since it is stuck in multi. New and Deteriorated bottle caps will give a solid signal.
    - You can pump the coil up and down and see the numbers jump. Iíve seen the Youtube video, try doing that on a 12 inch target. Any 12 inch target will be all over the place you say? My response - the CTX and Etrac can easily distinguish ferrous from non ferrous targets at maximum depth capability. It is possible.
    - The signal is different. I have seen solid tones on bottle caps, soft tones, scratchy tones, short tones, long tones so they have no consistency. A steel bottle cap can read #3 all the way up to the high teens on the eq800. There is no discriminating them out.

    Now that Iím done ranting Iíd love to get input from experienced beach hunters about what machine is the most efficient for low conductivity targets such as gold on the beach. What Iím looking for:
    1. Ability to distinguish non ferrous from ferrous easily.
    2. Detector is higher frequency so good on lower conductivity targets. Not looking for too high or I will be digging tiny aluminum pieces. Would like to find a sweet spot where it will pick up small earrings but not pieces so tiny my pinpointer won't even find them.
    3. Excellent depth capabilities. If it can reach the same depths of eq800 I would be happy with it.
    4. Ability to set discrimination to eliminate zinc pennies and up. Iím not interested in digging silver or coins. Just looking for gold.

    The CTX and Etrac are the best of the best for land hunting silver. Is there a detector that is equivalent for beach gold detecting?
    Hawks88 likes this.

  2. #2
    us
    Mar 2011
    San Diego
    Equinox 800, Treasure Probe IV, E-Trac, 3 Excal 1000's, White's GM3 V-sat. White's TM808, VibraProbe, 15" NEL Attack, 5X10 Joey, Steath 920ix and 720i, TRX, etc....
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    If you find such a machine, let me know! I started on the beach over 49 years ago. The machines have greatly improved over that span, but, none are perfect yet. I find the Equinox is the best waterproof machine I've used for small gold. In dry sand, the XP Deus works good on small gold too, and is better on disc'ing out bottle caps. Not waterproof though, and not optimal in the wet sand and water. Yup, the Nox sure hit's hard on bottle caps, but, I don't find that to be a big problem here. Pull tabs IMO are worse. Big gold, just use your CTX, Excalibur, or CZ21. If you're really a masochist, get a PI machine. You'll find the gold (both big and small) along with every bit of ferrous junk.
    "jus cuz it's wrote down, don't make it so"

  3. #3
    OBN
    OBN is offline
    us
    Dec 2008
    Mid-Atlantic Waters
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cutaplug View Post
    Iím not interested in digging silver or coins. Just looking for gold.
    "Just looking for gold", that's me. But I never turn down a silver either.

    I think the best advice I can give is, put yourself where the best chances of find gold is... it's not just the machine.

    Someday the New Fisher "AQ" will be out, I would check in on that also.

    Effort is Important, But knowing where, can make all the difference!





  4. #4
    Charter Member
    us
    Only boaring people get board

    Nov 2018
    The Thumb
    Mine Lab Equinox 800, Mine Lab Pro Find 35, Garrett ATpro, Garrett Pro Pointer 2, Whites ID5 Classic
    852
    1957 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Typically when I start a new area of a hobby I ask the guys that have bin in that area of the hobby for their advise, to say the Nox sucks is not validated with your experience since you dont have any in that area of the hobby...

    Sounds like you need more time with your Nox and some gold...

    Make yourself a test bed using some gold and start learning what the Nox can do...
    I'll sleep when I'm dead

  5. #5
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
    XP Deus, Tesoro Cibola
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    I'm primarily a relic hunter, that said, I look for shipwreck coins on the beaches when in season. Right now there is too much sand. My XP Deus does extremely well in dry to moderately wet sand, it has found quite a bit of gold. With that said, on occasion I get fooled by an ALUMINUM lined screw cap. That also gets in the gold range, gold can go all over the place depending on size, karat quality, etc.

    I don't know what to tell you. I hear the Excalibur is great in the water, but, I don't go in the water. The most and biggest gold I ever found was with my Tesoro Cibola. That's what found my 1774 Gold Guinea and my biggest gold and diamond ring at depth, I guess 12" in salt water.

  6. #6
    Charter Member
    us
    Tommy

    Dec 2015
    Ann Arbor
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    All aboard were all on the same ship a little luck a little experience and gold under the coil

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  7. #7
    us
    Mar 2011
    San Diego
    Equinox 800, Treasure Probe IV, E-Trac, 3 Excal 1000's, White's GM3 V-sat. White's TM808, VibraProbe, 15" NEL Attack, 5X10 Joey, Steath 920ix and 720i, TRX, etc....
    9,565
    7104 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Honorable Mentions (3)
    When I talk about big vs. small gold, small gold is going to read 12-5 or less on a CTX or Etrac. 5 or less on an Equinox. Anything bigger should be picked up by just about any machine in good ground. An Excalibur and CTX will pick up most items 12-4 (or a 4 reading on a Nox) and up. Sometimes lower numbers won't be seen by an Excal or CTX (and many other machines). The Nox (and Deus) will see it, and usually report a good signal in good ground. Naturally, gold machines will see those small gold targets too, but, many gold machines (and the Deus) do not work well at a salt water beach, except in the dry sand. Now, the Equinox Gold modes don't work well in the wet salt sand or water either, so, you need to use another mode. Sometimes you can get away with using the Park and Field modes, sometimes it's just too noisy. Unfortunately, when you're in the Beach modes, the small gold targets tend to not be seen again.....especially Beach 2. It still works better than most other machines on small gold, but, not as good as it's other modes in dry sand. If you want the best machine to find small gold, get a PI machine and just put up with the iron targets. I find the Equinox gives me the best balance of finding small gold, and eliminating most iron targets. If I really need the extra couple of inches in depth, I use the Excalibur Or CTX with a big coil and just resolve myself to the fact that I will miss some small gold. Maybe when the Fisher Aquamanta comes out and can discriminate out iron while still finding small and/or deep gold, that might be the ticket. Right now, there is no free lunch. There's usually a trade-off or compromise when trying to find small gold in a salt water environment.
    Last edited by cudamark; Jul 17, 2019 at 03:20 PM.
    "jus cuz it's wrote down, don't make it so"

  8. #8
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
    XP Deus, Tesoro Cibola
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    I'm with Cudamark, and if I were in the market and were going IN salt water, I'd get the Excalibur.
    dsdigger and DeepseekerADS like this.

  9. #9

    Aug 2013
    46
    41 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Quote Originally Posted by cudamark View Post
    If you find such a machine, let me know! I started on the beach over 49 years ago. The machines have greatly improved over that span, but, none are perfect yet. I find the Equinox is the best waterproof machine I've used for small gold. In dry sand, the XP Deus works good on small gold too, and is better on disc'ing out bottle caps. Not waterproof though, and not optimal in the wet sand and water. Yup, the Nox sure hit's hard on bottle caps, but, I don't find that to be a big problem here. Pull tabs IMO are worse. Big gold, just use your CTX, Excalibur, or CZ21. If you're really a masochist, get a PI machine. You'll find the gold (both big and small) along with every bit of ferrous junk.
    I agree EQ is great on small gold. Sometimes it gets a little too sensitive for me especially in Park 2. Pull tabs don't bother me because I expect any machine to hit hard on a pull tab since it's in the gold range. What I don't expect is a minelab machine to hit hard on a rusty deteriorated bottle cap that even an AT Pro can discriminate easily =) I guess we'll just have to wait or pester minelab for some more firmware.

    Quote Originally Posted by OBN View Post
    "Just looking for gold", that's me. But I never turn down a silver either.

    I think the best advice I can give is, put yourself where the best chances of find gold is... it's not just the machine.

    Someday the New Fisher "AQ" will be out, I would check in on that also.
    In Missouri my best chance for finding gold was in the swimming holes. Now there are no swimming holes here cause of gators lol. So the ocean becomes the swimming hole and I have no idea what I'm doing. I agree that location is an important factor. Where should I go?


    Quote Originally Posted by Toecutter View Post
    Typically when I start a new area of a hobby I ask the guys that have bin in that area of the hobby for their advise, to say the Nox sucks is not validated with your experience since you dont have any in that area of the hobby...

    Sounds like you need more time with your Nox and some gold...

    Make yourself a test bed using some gold and start learning what the Nox can do...
    I started this thread to ask for advice in the beach hunting area of the hobby because of my experience with the equinox, not because of my lack of experience with the equinox. I have yet to hear an experienced user say that they can distinguish a deep ferrous from non ferrous bottle cap on the eq. If anyone can I'm open to knowing the exact method and then I would investigate it myself. Have you ever hunted exclusively for gold targets with the eq for a significant amount of time and NOT came home with a bag full of bottle caps? Aluminum bottle caps and pull tabs = acceptable. Rusty deteriorated iron bottle caps = not acceptable.


    Quote Originally Posted by cudamark View Post
    When I talk about big vs. small gold, small gold is going to read 12-5 or less on a CTX or Etrac. 5 or less on an Equinox. Anything bigger should be picked up by just about any machine in good ground. An Excalibur and CTX will pick up most items 12-4 (or a 4 reading on a Nox) and up. Sometimes lower numbers won't be seen by an Excal or CTX (and many other machines). The Nox (and Deus) will see it, and usually report a good signal in good ground. Naturally, gold machines will see those small gold targets too, but, many gold machines (and the Deus) do not work well at a salt water beach, except in the dry sand. Now, the Equinox Gold modes don't work well in the wet salt sand or water either, so, you need to use another mode. Sometimes you can get away with using the Park and Field modes, sometimes it's just too noisy. Unfortunately, when you're in the Beach modes, the small gold targets tend to not be seen again.....especially Beach 2. It still works better than most other machines on small gold, but, not as good as it's other modes in dry sand. If you want the best machine to find small gold, get a PI machine and just put up with the iron targets. I find the Equinox gives me the best balance of finding small gold, and eliminating most iron targets. If I really need the extra couple of inches in depth, I use the Excalibur Or CTX with a big coil and just resolve myself to the fact that I will miss some small gold. Maybe when the Fisher Aquamanta comes out and can discriminate out iron while still finding small and/or deep gold, that might be the ticket. Right now, there is no free lunch. There's usually a trade-off or compromise when trying to find small gold in a salt water environment.
    I agree with most of what you're saying. I hunt in Beach 1 most of the time on the beach in the wet areas and part 2 in dry. I'm not sure the CTX will even come close to the EQ800 on gold rings as far as depth. Have you tested them side by side? If I could have an eq800 running ctx circuitry except tuned for lower conductivity targets instead of higher then I'd be in heaven.
    sprailroad and dsdigger like this.

  10. #10
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
    XP Deus, Tesoro Cibola
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    Bottle caps...The big screw on solid aluminum ones I dig. Just because in that range on my machine it could be one of several good targets. I rarely dig an older bottle cap. I sometimes deliberately dig a newer one, the ones with foil lining, just to make sure I'm doing it right.

    Depth isn't everything. If I were you I'd take some time to do some experimenting with the 800 to see if you can perhaps notch them out.
    Toecutter, dsdigger and Truth like this.

  11. #11
    OBN
    OBN is offline
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    Dec 2008
    Mid-Atlantic Waters
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cutaplug View Post
    I recently moved to Florida and would like to find gold. If life was simple I would be able to take my CTX and kill it on gold but life is never simple. The CTX is a great machine on silver but to say it kindly it sucks on gold. I understand why but no need to go into details on that.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cutaplug View Post
    I agree that location is an important factor. Where should I go?
    Florida, in the water...at a high traffic beach, or do some research on the history of the area and see if any places that once were on the shore are now gone, like hotels...casinos...school hang outs....old beach clubs...old swimming holes.."the list goes on"


    ...
    Last edited by OBN; Jul 19, 2019 at 06:46 PM.

    Effort is Important, But knowing where, can make all the difference!





  12. #12
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
    XP Deus, Tesoro Cibola
    13,379
    22879 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Banner Finds (7)
    Honorable Mentions (1)
    OBN probably does better than anyone on this!

  13. #13
    Charter Member
    us
    Only boaring people get board

    Nov 2018
    The Thumb
    Mine Lab Equinox 800, Mine Lab Pro Find 35, Garrett ATpro, Garrett Pro Pointer 2, Whites ID5 Classic
    852
    1957 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    ""I started this thread to ask for advice in the beach hunting area of the hobby because of my experience with the equinox, not because of my lack of experience with the equinox. I have yet to hear an experienced user say that they can distinguish a deep ferrous from non ferrous bottle cap on the eq. If anyone can I'm open to knowing the exact method and then I would investigate it myself. Have you ever hunted exclusively for gold targets with the eq for a significant amount of time and NOT came home with a bag full of bottle caps? Aluminum bottle caps and pull tabs = acceptable. Rusty deteriorated iron bottle caps = not acceptable.""

    So when you find a machine that "doesn't suck" let us all know because we dont like diggin those pull tabs and bottle caps either.... good luck!!
    dsdigger, smokeythecat and Truth like this.
    I'll sleep when I'm dead

  14. #14
    OBN
    OBN is offline
    us
    Dec 2008
    Mid-Atlantic Waters
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    Quote Originally Posted by smokeythecat View Post
    OBN probably does better than anyone on this!
    Thank You, You would think but put me on a fresh drop beach and everyone kicks my butt.

    Effort is Important, But knowing where, can make all the difference!





  15. #15
    Charter Member
    us
    Nov 2012
    Maryland
    XP Deus, Tesoro Cibola
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    22879 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Banner Finds (7)
    Honorable Mentions (1)
    I kick everyone's butt on a fresh drop beach! Dr. says another couple weeks before I can put my Super Cape back on and hit it. This "healing" stuff is getting old.
    OBN and DeepseekerADS like this.

 

 
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