May 08, 2012, 10:30 AM
Is New Detector technology any better than an older model?
What I want to know is, is a brand new detector a little better or a whole lot better (other than the features) Than a detector from 10 years ago?
May 08, 2012, 12:48 PM
There has not been a lot of detector technology improvements over the past 10 yrs. Just bells and whistles. Heck, the Explorer is already 10 yrs. old now! That was a step forward in coin-hunting machines, as it lended such sweet tones (once you got used to the flock of geese sounds), deep depths, good TID's at depth, etc.....
Contrast to the "10 yr. periods" between, say, 1965 to 1975, then 1975 to 1985, then 1985 to 1995, and so forth. In THOSE decades, you had a virtual dinasour if you didn't upgrade. The advancements were astounding each decade, at those times. But we seem to have hit a ceiling of limits of science & physics or whatever.
But be aware, that even though you accept that there hasn't been much advancements in the past 10 yrs, yet there IS a lot of difference between different machines. So a 10 yr. such & such Whites, compared to a 10 yr. old such & such Fisher or Minelab, is not the same question. There are multitudes of differences and pro's and con's between each different unit, make, model, etc.... So that, for example, some machines from the 1990s will run circles around a brand new machine now. And it will depend on what your objectives are, where you're hunting (the type site, your skill, etc...). Diff. machines for diff. jobs.
Originally Posted by Dirtminer
Metal detecting is my one worldy vice!
May 08, 2012, 01:55 PM
May 09, 2012, 01:24 AM
New detectors tend to be lighter, some are better balanced, most are easier to use. But not much better and in many cases worse than the old classics as long as the older machine is used where it still excels. Old detectors had ground balance you would have to set yourself and then coil discipline had to be maintained ie sweeping the coil at a set height to avoid the detector sounding off.
So a little more effort in set up is needed but the advantages are that the detector will not allow you to detect swinging the coil up and down losing depth.
No filtering as with modern machines so no need to maintain a correct slow (2 filter), fast (4 filter) or extra slow FBS/BBS speed to maintain depth and discrimination.
Consider the end of each arc as you swing. Most modern detectors are S.P.D. designs so motion is needed and at the end of your sweep the motion becomes insufficient for a four filter design and as the coil reaches the end of its arc there's insufficient movement for even the slow sweep detectors to work. So your not detecting efficiently or to the width you might think you are.
True iron see through is limited to some older design's. Crown caps, that so many have trouble with today, were not such a problem with the old type discriminators.
All metal as a mode remains the deepest seeking but most modern detectors have some degree of discrimination in use and so skip over the deeper targets. With many of the original VLF/TR discriminators you would search in all metal and flick a switch or press a button to bring in the discrimination circuit. This would either provide I.D. or not. If not then you knew a possibly good target was deeper than the discrimination could "see" so could then take off an inch or two of soil until I.D. was possible. Your modern motion detector would just not indicate the target in the first place.
Those who didn't want to keep switching modes could select a model with a permanent all metal primary search mode with constant ferrous/non ferrous meter or audio readout.
I think things are summed up in the phrase that new tends to be easier but not always better. The one major exception is twin/multifrequency as the old detectors did have trouble with wet salt beaches where you did need to have a dedicated machine.
May 09, 2012, 09:05 PM
Come out from under your bed today...... DO SOMETHING!
The newer detectors are better than the old... older than 20 years. But I still like my older detectors. TTC
The ground at home was covered with snow and I was covered with sweat. My younger brother called me a killer and my Daddy called me a vet. . Still in Saigon, Charlie Daniels Band
May 09, 2012, 10:30 PM
It's dangerous to be right when those with a thimbleful of perceived authority are wrong.
No. Detector technology has changed little in 10 years. Depth? No. Discrimination? No.
More bells and whistles, fancy displays and computer interfaces to make us THINK they have? Yes.
May 09, 2012, 10:40 PM
what hath god wrought
My buddy just got a silver dime from a hammered trash filled park, the machine was a 1984 garrett. Yes, the new machines are much better than an old machine. Much, much better.
Federal Bureau of Governmental Redundancy Reduction Agency
May 10, 2012, 12:51 PM
They seem to be just a little lighter but I really don't think I find any more today then I did back in the day . ( seems hard to believe, dating back to the 70's . I remember digging very deep silver barbers and buffalo nickels way back then with those old Garrett detectors.)
May 11, 2012, 12:23 AM
Those who push the new is better line always seem to ignore that old time U.S. brand of Nautilus that managed to win the G.N.R.S. year in year out for years with a design that hasn't changed in 25 years ? (O.K. they changed the shaft for better balance). My old Deepstar P.I. still beats the pants off all the Whites, Garretts, Tesoro's etc. Only problem is getting an older machine that still works to spec. rather than something that's been on and off E-Bay every year for the last fifteen years.
The other problem is that if your use to switch on and go you may not like having to work for your finds.
Sep 09, 2013, 02:27 PM
Sep 09, 2013, 02:41 PM
The biggest change that has come down in the latest years is the multiple frequency detectors which are much better at mineral rejection than standard single frequency machines. But even this technology is over 10 years old. Very few companies are using this feature though.
I believe some new leaps are coming for the PI detectors. Minelab has been doing good thing with it for gold hunters and it looks like Garrett is releasing their answer to those. Hopefully a competition will force all the players to take the current machines and advance them.
Sep 09, 2013, 02:47 PM
You also have to consider the goal in mind. If you are looking for simple raw depth, that is one thing. Most detectorists are looking for coins in heavily trashed parks and home sites. Correctly identifying coins among other garbage non-ferrous and abundant ferrous targets HAS improved in many of the newest detectors.
Originally Posted by U.K. Brian
Sep 09, 2013, 04:41 PM
I've posted this quite a number of times. My circa 1985 Fisher 1260X blew the doors off my Ace 250 - not even a comparison there.
And then there was my '81 Garrett DeepseekerADS III, those whispers of silver at 8"-10"....
The key remains, period !!!! = know what your machine is telling you !!!!
The Fisher beat the Deepseeker by the way it handled the mineralized soil. Otherwise, they were equal in depth. There was a park in Monroe, MI where my Garrett couldn't search, the Fisher went right through it, found a Walking Liberty in a spot I'd already tried to cover with the Garrett, but couldn't.
Those are the types of things you find with new technology. Even today, we are not getting all that much deeper. But what we are getting is a clearer understanding of what we are hearing + a better ability to hear through different types of soils.
You can do just about as well with a good antique detector, as with a new one - provided you have put your time in understanding the language of your machine.
But, of course there are the exceptions of cheap technology ......
Sep 09, 2013, 05:11 PM
Oh geez! A good time to rant!
Here is a factoid that all but us really old detectorists will dispute: Assuming non-minerialized soil conditions, a BFO detector will easily out perform a TR machine! The trick is knowing which side of resonance ferris and non-ferrous material will be detected, as well as setting the threshold just right!
The next factoid, is the assumption that digital is better than analog. Well..... Analog detectors have almost infinite discrimination. Digital machines only offer preset selections. Sometimes that difference, in the hands of a skilled operator, will make the difference of rich vs. trash.
Digital machines determine what's under the coil by measuring the shift in frequency and the phase angle change in the transmitted signal caused by the material being detected (ferrous/non-ferrous). This signature is compared to a preset table, and that information is relayed to the operator in a variety of methods. Analog machines require a lot of determination of the signals (discriminating tastes as it were) by the operator. Depending on the skill of said operator, an analog machine can easily out perform a digital one.
Then there is computing power. Most detectorists would steer away from a machine that costs a couple of G-notes, and only got 4 to 6 hours of operation on a battery charge. As a result, manufacturers have to weigh weight, computing power, battery life, selling price, and a dozen other factors when introducing a new machine, whatever it is.
I will stick my neck out a bit. Typically, the price you pay is very close to a logical performance ratio. But lets not forget, that any performance ratio tends to be an inverted function. In other words, doubling the price doesn't double the performance!
Sep 09, 2013, 05:25 PM
I would like to add a few notes to A-As post. Everything he said was correct, however...
There is no such thing as "non-mineralized" soil. Some soil is really low, some is really, REALLY high and most is somewhere in between. The the effectiveness of the bfo ranges from mediocre to terrible for most places. This is why the TR stomped the bfo out of existance.
Analog (non computerized) can give a LOT of information to the well trained ear. I could determine silver from clad with about 90% accuracy on my old Garrett Master Hunter. But the discrimination was highly limited. You turn the dial and eliminate everything below that point. Digital detectors can allow to eliminate any point along the scale without sacrificing target lower on the conductive scale. The Minelabs introduced the conductive grid which meant you could eliminate variations on the conductive scale.
I completely agree with the last statement. You generally DO get more with more you pay, but it is NOT a direct linear relationship.
In the end it all really comes down to 2 factors. Can the machine handle the soil mineralization? and Are you willing to dig when it beeps? Analog detectors let people make some incredible finds because it was a "dig it all" situation. The modern improvements let people ignore a lot of non-ideal signals and miss some great items while at the same time allowing them to find good targets in heavy iron that many older machines couldn't. It's a mixed bag.
Last edited by Jason in Enid; Sep 09, 2013 at 05:32 PM.
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