Nox 800 Ground Balance Always Set At 0 With The Tracking Off

Eastender

Sr. Member
Mar 30, 2020
304
1,814
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I'm a New England USA forest colonial hunter who never uses the ground balance circuitry in my Nox 800. I don't have signal stability issues, falsing issues, threshold changes, and find a wide array of coins and relics at depth. I do run the auto noise cancel function every hour or so and when I move to a new area. I'm happy and successful running in Field I factory defaults the entire time. And I've gotten good enough to guess the little bit of trash which bothers me. I can usually accurately guess whether I am hitting a paper shotgun shell brass base, lead bullet, and am able to sort nails from iron relics before digging. Since I don't get bogged down in metal saturated areas, I dig up most solid signals. Two tones and no notching works for me. The one truism I've discovered is good targets have repeatable unchanging numbers. Plus the signal is not diffuse while the coil passes over it in several directions.

I've always run my sensitivity at 20. But given the stability of my search area's low mineralized soils, I am going to try to run it at a full 25 next Saturday and Sunday. I usually run the stock 11" coil even though I own the ML 15." I can swing the 11" all day without complaint plus have no problems hiking trails and hills for a full 8 hour day with a backpack on. The 15" increased weight is noticeable to me, but maybe I'm just not used to it. I usually swing the 11" stock coil fully extended well out in front of me, but drop back a notch or two to choke up on the 15" which makes a difference. I had the 15" on my last outing and was surprised to find out how sensitive it is to very small objects. This confirms what I previously discovered and what many others have said. Plus the signals seem stronger and sharper than the stock 11" although I can't say I am pulling up metal from any deeper. I just bought a PWR NOX battery pack for under my armrest so if the big coil with max sens suck my battery on an 8 hr. outing I will have reserves.

The remnants of Hurricane Ian arrived on the NE coast last Friday night and we have been under high wind with occasional lashing rain which will continue through tomorrow. It morphed into a Nor'easter. I'm not a beach hunter but conditions are ripe with extensive coastal erosion. My area had a good spring but as soon as July hit we entered a drought with water restrictions. I've lived in my area for 25 years and have never seen wetlands so dry that I could walk out onto them. Looking forward to the sun and getting out detecting this weekend. Deer bow season opened up on October 1st so I need to be careful. I bought an orange backpack to match my hat and coat.
 

Jorgeke

Sr. Member
Oct 13, 2021
475
1,548
I'm a New England USA forest colonial hunter who never uses the ground balance circuitry in my Nox 800. I don't have signal stability issues, falsing issues, threshold changes, and find a wide array of coins and relics at depth. I do run the auto noise cancel function every hour or so and when I move to a new area. I'm happy and successful running in Field I factory defaults the entire time. And I've gotten good enough to guess the little bit of trash which bothers me. I can usually accurately guess whether I am hitting a paper shotgun shell brass base, lead bullet, and am able to sort nails from iron relics before digging. Since I don't get bogged down in metal saturated areas, I dig up most solid signals. Two tones and no notching works for me. The one truism I've discovered is good targets have repeatable unchanging numbers. Plus the signal is not diffuse while the coil passes over it in several directions.

I've always run my sensitivity at 20. But given the stability of my search area's low mineralized soils, I am going to try to run it at a full 25 next Saturday and Sunday. I usually run the stock 11" coil even though I own the ML 15." I can swing the 11" all day without complaint plus have no problems hiking trails and hills for a full 8 hour day with a backpack on. The 15" increased weight is noticeable to me, but maybe I'm just not used to it. I usually swing the 11" stock coil fully extended well out in front of me, but drop back a notch or two to choke up on the 15" which makes a difference. I had the 15" on my last outing and was surprised to find out how sensitive it is to very small objects. This confirms what I previously discovered and what many others have said. Plus the signals seem stronger and sharper than the stock 11" although I can't say I am pulling up metal from any deeper. I just bought a PWR NOX battery pack for under my armrest so if the big coil with max sens suck my battery on an 8 hr. outing I will have reserves.

The remnants of Hurricane Ian arrived on the NE coast last Friday night and we have been under high wind with occasional lashing rain which will continue through tomorrow. It morphed into a Nor'easter. I'm not a beach hunter but conditions are ripe with extensive coastal erosion. My area had a good spring but as soon as July hit we entered a drought with water restrictions. I've lived in my area for 25 years and have never seen wetlands so dry that I could walk out onto them. Looking forward to the sun and getting out detecting this weekend. Deer bow season opened up on October 1st so I need to be careful. I bought an orange backpack to match my hat and coat
Estender

Well done!

You showed a very good narrative style, you caught my attention since the begining to the end.

Good luck, in your next adventure, keep in touch, keep detecting 😎👍🏽
 

callmez

Jr. Member
May 25, 2014
92
142
East Tennessee
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Tesoro Vaquero
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
I am still new to the Equinox 800, moving over from a Tesoro Vaquero which required that I stay on top of ground balancing with the ground I hunt. Often I would check the ground balance a handful of times per hunt -- every time I started hunting, and anytime the chattering made me suspicious that the ground, EMI, etc. had changed.

I am still getting a handle on all of the controls and settings for the Equinox -- again, I'm coming over from a machine with 4 knobs and no screen! When I started hunting with the Nox I decided to put it in ground tracking mode to keep things simple. Somewhere along the way I accidentally switched it over to manual ground balance but did not set the ground balance, so it was set at 0. I spent all day hunting a site I am getting very familiar with, and maybe a couple of other hunts too -- I don't know when I changed things, but I finally realized that the settings had been changed. Up until that point I had my settings as you have yours.

Ground balancing at this site gives a number generally in the 50s or 60s, depending on where you do it. That's a number I can't equate to my experiences twisting knobs on the Vaquero, but if I was a half-turn off with the Vaquero (which liked to be 1/4 turn to the negative), I was not getting the best out of the machine and my ears told me so. My experience with having the Equinox GB 'off' by 50 or 60 -- whatever 50 or 60 represents -- was NOT like that. It didn't sound like there were GB issues and I did not notice any lack of depth, though it would be hard for me to tell given my lack of experience.

That's a lot of words to get around to my point and my question. I agree that the Nox seems to hunt just fine at a zero GB setting even when the ground rings up at 50+, and I know others hunt that way, but I wonder why we would intentionally choose to NOT ground balance other than not wanting to mess with it. Is there some reason I'm missing here?

I understand that the Nox is a completely different animal from my old Tesoro, but under no circumstances would I ever choose to hunt without adjusting the ground balance on it and I assumed that would be true of any machine from any manufacturer. Doesn't a detector benefit from knowing what the baseline is? Isn't that why we have the ability to control it in the first place?

I'm not wishing to be critical of anyone or their methods here -- I appreciate Eastender's original post and agree that the Nox did not noticably sound out of GB to me when set at zero. Still, I am trying to understand why one would purposefully NOT ground balance.
 
OP
Eastender

Eastender

Sr. Member
Mar 30, 2020
304
1,814
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #5
I began this thread because my ground balance settings may seem counterintuitive to many. This is why I recommend reading the latest "The Equinox Series Handbook" by Andy Sabisch (2021-2022). He writes about this topic in several areas including the "General Tips and Techniques" with a section called "Ground Balance...To Use or Not?" He goes on to say: "Ground Balancing the Equinox is one of the most contentious topics when it comes to how to best set it up for the field." In my almost three years of experience with the Equinox I have had no problems running with this circuitry off. I see no need to further process the signal and it could work against me

The MultiIQ Circuit copes well with ground mineralization. The problem with tracking ground balance is that when sweeping across the target several times a weak signal can be nullified. But again, my soils are not heavily mineralized, I'm not dealing with trashy areas, and my signal is quiet and stable. Worth reading up on and experimenting with.
 

Gare

Gold Member
Dec 30, 2012
5,179
9,955
Canton Ohio Area
🏆 Honorable Mentions:
2
Detector(s) used
Presently using Deus's have Minelabs, Nokta's Tesoro's Have them all . Have WAY to many need to get rid of some
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
I'm a New England USA forest colonial hunter who never uses the ground balance circuitry in my Nox 800. I don't have signal stability issues, falsing issues, threshold changes, and find a wide array of coins and relics at depth. I do run the auto noise cancel function every hour or so and when I move to a new area. I'm happy and successful running in Field I factory defaults the entire time. And I've gotten good enough to guess the little bit of trash which bothers me. I can usually accurately guess whether I am hitting a paper shotgun shell brass base, lead bullet, and am able to sort nails from iron relics before digging. Since I don't get bogged down in metal saturated areas, I dig up most solid signals. Two tones and no notching works for me. The one truism I've discovered is good targets have repeatable unchanging numbers. Plus the signal is not diffuse while the coil passes over it in several directions.

I've always run my sensitivity at 20. But given the stability of my search area's low mineralized soils, I am going to try to run it at a full 25 next Saturday and Sunday. I usually run the stock 11" coil even though I own the ML 15." I can swing the 11" all day without complaint plus have no problems hiking trails and hills for a full 8 hour day with a backpack on. The 15" increased weight is noticeable to me, but maybe I'm just not used to it. I usually swing the 11" stock coil fully extended well out in front of me, but drop back a notch or two to choke up on the 15" which makes a difference. I had the 15" on my last outing and was surprised to find out how sensitive it is to very small objects. This confirms what I previously discovered and what many others have said. Plus the signals seem stronger and sharper than the stock 11" although I can't say I am pulling up metal from any deeper. I just bought a PWR NOX battery pack for under my armrest so if the big coil with max sens suck my battery on an 8 hr. outing I will have reserves.

The remnants of Hurricane Ian arrived on the NE coast last Friday night and we have been under high wind with occasional lashing rain which will continue through tomorrow. It morphed into a Nor'easter. I'm not a beach hunter but conditions are ripe with extensive coastal erosion. My area had a good spring but as soon as July hit we entered a drought with water restrictions. I've lived in my area for 25 years and have never seen wetlands so dry that I could walk out onto them. Looking forward to the sun and getting out detecting this weekend. Deer bow season opened up on October 1st so I need to be careful. I bought an orange backpack to match my hat and coat.
Great post with a lot of information :)
Thanks
 

pepperj

Gold Member
Feb 3, 2009
28,753
95,890
Detector(s) used
Deus, Deus 2, Minelab 3030, E-Trac,
Primary Interest:
Relic Hunting
I'm a New England USA forest colonial hunter who never uses the ground balance circuitry in my Nox 800. I don't have signal stability issues, falsing issues, threshold changes, and find a wide array of coins and relics at depth. I do run the auto noise cancel function every hour or so and when I move to a new area. I'm happy and successful running in Field I factory defaults the entire time. And I've gotten good enough to guess the little bit of trash which bothers me. I can usually accurately guess whether I am hitting a paper shotgun shell brass base, lead bullet, and am able to sort nails from iron relics before digging. Since I don't get bogged down in metal saturated areas, I dig up most solid signals. Two tones and no notching works for me. The one truism I've discovered is good targets have repeatable unchanging numbers. Plus the signal is not diffuse while the coil passes over it in several directions.

I've always run my sensitivity at 20. But given the stability of my search area's low mineralized soils, I am going to try to run it at a full 25 next Saturday and Sunday. I usually run the stock 11" coil even though I own the ML 15." I can swing the 11" all day without complaint plus have no problems hiking trails and hills for a full 8 hour day with a backpack on. The 15" increased weight is noticeable to me, but maybe I'm just not used to it. I usually swing the 11" stock coil fully extended well out in front of me, but drop back a notch or two to choke up on the 15" which makes a difference. I had the 15" on my last outing and was surprised to find out how sensitive it is to very small objects. This confirms what I previously discovered and what many others have said. Plus the signals seem stronger and sharper than the stock 11" although I can't say I am pulling up metal from any deeper. I just bought a PWR NOX battery pack for under my armrest so if the big coil with max sens suck my battery on an 8 hr. outing I will have reserves.

The remnants of Hurricane Ian arrived on the NE coast last Friday night and we have been under high wind with occasional lashing rain which will continue through tomorrow. It morphed into a Nor'easter. I'm not a beach hunter but conditions are ripe with extensive coastal erosion. My area had a good spring but as soon as July hit we entered a drought with water restrictions. I've lived in my area for 25 years and have never seen wetlands so dry that I could walk out onto them. Looking forward to the sun and getting out detecting this weekend. Deer bow season opened up on October 1st so I need to be careful. I bought an orange backpack to match my hat and coat.
Good write up review

As with every detector, and with the previous models of ML, a larger coil will throw off the balance just enough to start weighing heavy after long periods of swinging.
Chocking up on the stem is what I do most of the time on all the machines, just far enough out to balance the swing, as I really see no advantage in long swing.
Sure one might cover a wider arc-but it's also like holding a broom handle straight out swinging it back and forth.
In a forested area a shorter swing has been preferred to navigate around trees, and brushes.
Ground balance? Never have really used it on any machine-just let the brain of the machine take care of that one.
Away from EMI, in the forest, really the best place to open everything right up and listen to the sounds.
 

callmez

Jr. Member
May 25, 2014
92
142
East Tennessee
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Tesoro Vaquero
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
" In my almost three years of experience with the Equinox I have had no problems running with this circuitry off. I see no need to further process the signal and it could work against me

The MultiIQ Circuit copes well with ground mineralization. The problem with tracking ground balance is that when sweeping across the target several times a weak signal can be nullified. But again, my soils are not heavily mineralized, I'm not dealing with trashy areas, and my signal is quiet and stable. Worth reading up on and experimenting with.
I can understand the concept of wanting to keep the processing to a mimimum -- you can hear a lot of useful nuance in the Tesoro's sound. By comparison there's a TON of processing going on in that little Nox box, with the different frequencies and all -- no getting around that. I am using my old wired Killer B headphones to get everything I can get out of the Nox's sound, and I feel like the nuances aren't nearly as clear as I get with the low tech single tone Tesoro. But they are there still.

I have been paying attention to the tracking ground balance to see if it will null a signal, and have not yet seen it actually happen even though I have been spending a lot of time doing the jitterbug on some signals, pinpointing without using the pinpoint mode. Maybe Minelab has developed a good methodology for identifying what is background noise vs. when a user is going over the same target again and again.

Thanks for the post and response, it is good to think about such things and keep one's mind open.
 

callmez

Jr. Member
May 25, 2014
92
142
East Tennessee
Detector(s) used
Equinox 800
Tesoro Vaquero
Primary Interest:
Metal Detecting
Good write up review

Chocking up on the stem is what I do most of the time on all the machines, just far enough out to balance the swing, as I really see no advantage in long swing.
Sure one might cover a wider arc-but it's also like holding a broom handle straight out swinging it back and forth.
I've been choking up on the 11" coil myself, and extending the 6" coil a couple of notches for wider arcs. It's not the best balanced machine with the 11" coil, but choking up helps me.
 

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