Truth vs. Fiction PI vs VLF Machines
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Thread: Truth vs. Fiction PI vs VLF Machines

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  1. #1

    Truth vs. Fiction PI vs VLF Machines

    I've been outdug seriously in bad ground by someone using a PI machine. It was ridiculous. Then I put a LARGE loop on my vlf machine and they would get 10 items to my 9, so in my experience, that worked fine. I did buy a PI machine, but it sucked up nails like a tornado, so resold it, and it was an expensive machine.

    I took it to a competitive hunt and got NOTHING with it for the first day, switched to the VLF machine the second day and did ok.

    What is your experience?

    I know we all have opinions but I can't handle the really heavy machines.

  2. #2
    OBN is offline
    Dec 2008
    Mid-Atlantic Waters
    5529 times
    2019.....Gold rings..106..Misc/gold 9.....Silver/Sterling 255
    Honorable Mentions (1)
    I use the PI only deep in the water where there is less trash and weight is not a factor, and only after I have used a Excal and diagnosed the need for a PI. If your hunting shore line or very shallow in then your up for punishment possibly.
    DeepseekerADS and CASPER-2 like this.

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

  3. #3
    Nov 2013
    Long Island
    CTX 3030, Xp Deus, That's it, I'm done.
    2260 times
    Metal Detecting
    Banner Finds (2)
    Honorable Mentions (1)
    Bad ground = PI machine. Putting a larger coil on a vlf in bad ground makes things worse, more bad ground for the machine to try and compensate for. Non-discrimination of a PI is the trade off for raw power. Nothing we can do about it.

  4. #4
    Sounds about right. My decision was I did not need another eagle button if it was 15 inches underground in rocky soil. Did pull out a 3 ringer and a fired gardner from the horrible red dirt today. Short hunt. Some of that rock, if crushed would give up gold.

  5. #5
    Nov 2015
    Western USA
    Garrett AT Gold, AT Max, AT Pro, Ace 350, GTI-2500, Sea Hunter MKII, Infinium LS, Scorpion GS, Pro-Pointer AT, Fisher F75 LTD2, Gold Bug 2, F-Pulse, Whites TM-808, Schonstedt Maggie, Falcon MD20
    506 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    It's all about the right tool for the job, and sometimes that will be a PI, other times it will be a VLF. Sometimes I need a sledgehammer, but most of the time I need a carpenters hammer…

    In the gold fields I use a PI (Garrett ATX and before that a Minelab GP Extreme) for deep large nuggets, and a VLF (Gold Bug 2 or AT Gold) for the really small shallow stuff. I've searched ground so hot that it is difficult to use a VLF at all, and the depth is severely reduced, and in those areas the PI is king. If bedrock is close, then there isn't any need to swing a heavy PI, as long as the VLF will ground balance properly.

    If I'm searching a beach I use my Garrett Sea Hunter MKII for the wet sand and in the surf, and I use my AT Pro in the dry sand. I want the depth and ability to handle salt water that the Sea Hunter provides and I can deal with digging junk, but in the dry stuff with the ability to knock out iron and accurately ID most (modern) pulltabs from rings, and audio that keeps me from digging bottle caps makes the AT Pro my choice in the towel line.

    Weight is the downside of a PI, and the lack of discrimination. Hip-mounting or using a bungee support can help with the weight. The ability to ignore mineralization and gain a noticeable amount of depth is the upside. VLF machines have great trash separation and target ID abilities, excellent discrimination (I use very little however), and typically the machines are pretty lightweight. They also sip batteries, and PI detectors suck them dry quickly. Those are just some of the reasons why VLF detectors are still the top choice for most metal detecting applications. If they ever get a fully discriminating, accurate target ID, lightweight PI detector the VLF will go the way of the BFO.

    Simply put, I use a PI where it is most effective, and a VLF where it is most effective. And I'm grateful to have the option.
    Money may not grow on trees, but it's often found under them!

  6. #6
    Charter Member

    May 2010
    White Plains, New York
    Minelab GPZ 7000; Equinox 600 -- Teknetics EuroTek PRO -- Grave Digger Tools Nemesis shovel, Sidekick hand digger -- Bunk's Hermit Pick
    23054 times
    Metal Detecting
    Honorable Mentions (1)
    I agree with Cactusman. You have to have more than one club in the bag to win a tournament. I dig a lot of bullets, barbed wire, boot tacks, and pieces of of bean cans in the old goldfields of Arizona with my PI machines, but it's worth it. I would think the same would be true for relic hunters. If you want a solid 16"+ on a button or Three-ringer then the Minelab GPX 5000 or GPZ 7000 would be king - in my opinion.

  7. #7
    Charter Member

    May 2019
    5 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Hi Terry!

    Seems like the GPZ 7000 is pretty good all around eh?
    gunsil and Terry Soloman like this.

  8. #8
    Charter Member

    May 2010
    White Plains, New York
    Minelab GPZ 7000; Equinox 600 -- Teknetics EuroTek PRO -- Grave Digger Tools Nemesis shovel, Sidekick hand digger -- Bunk's Hermit Pick
    23054 times
    Metal Detecting
    Honorable Mentions (1)
    Quote Originally Posted by Grom View Post
    Hi Terry!

    Seems like the GPZ 7000 is pretty good all around eh?
    Yes. It is an Amazing machine!

  9. #9
    GPZ7000 best used in a desert. City park, not so much.
    Terry Soloman likes this.



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