XP Deus Team USA | video podcast

We are pleased to announce the XP Deus Team USA metal detecting podcast is now live, the show will be online every month with new guests and a range of XP topics form technical advice to comedy.
The Show is hosted by Mike Counter and Dave DiNatale backed up by their strong team behind the scenes.

XP Deus Team USA banner
Show number 1 features a wide variety of topics and videos from some of the XP Deus Team USA members,
XP Soya talks about her finds and why she chose an XP Deus.

XP Sonya talks about metal detecting with the XP Deus
Carol also known as the She Detector talks about hunting on a Florida beach.

Using the XP Deus on a Florida beach
Hollywood comedian Todd Roy shows us how important research is and never to bring a non detecting friend along with you.

Todd Roy offers advice and metal detecting tips
Gary from XP talks about the history of the company and how they got started. He also interviews Darcy Fear who was on vacation from Canada to the UK and found an amazing civil war hoard.

Gary interviews Darcy who found ancient coins while metal detecting in the UK
Later in the show it’s back to the UK to catch up with Gary Cook and Steve Murtey as the live dig some interesting coins.

UK metal detectorists hunt for Roman treasure
Steve Graap, one of the shows producers talks about the best way to make detecting videos and gives some interesting tips.

Steve Graap talks about filming your metal detecting adventures

Enough said guys here is the show, and remember if you want to be a part of the XP Deus Team drop them a line via Facebook or e mail.
XP Deus Team USA Facebook link

SJCam SJ600 Legend the my experience

SJcam SJ600 legend, this is my experience and my personal opinion.

Having watched excellent video reviews, I decided to buy an SJCAM sj6 Legend, on paper it looked perfect, but before I purchased I wanted to ask a few questions about it and will it be suitable for my needs.
At that point I should have taken the warnings, the UK number for aftersales just rings on to an answerphone.
So your only support is forums and social media, and as we all know that is a minefield, who is genuine and who has been given products in exchange for glowing reports.


I eventually purchased a camera from Amazon for around £135, plus the extra batteries, a remote controller and an external microphone.
The plan was to find a small camera that I could carry around and film my metal detecting videos, with good image quality and stabilisation, plus the external microphone should enhance the audio quality. This was not intended to replace my Sony PXW X70 or my Sony NX30, I was under no illusions that this camera was going to set new standards, what I wanted was a Go pro replacement for a fraction of the money, just like the reviews had stated, but what I eventually go was a headache and a lot of waisted time and money.

I upgraded the software to the latest version and made some necessary changes to the menu settings.
My first time out into the field was a total disaster, the battery only gave me 15 mins filming time, the plastic mount snapped in half, and when I arrived home and downloaded the video.

The lens
I could not believe the fish eye distortion even in narrow view,  all my footage was unusable, so that was my first trip scrapped.

The Accessories I purchased

The wrist mounted remote control connected well, but you never know if it’s filming or not, the only way is to look at the front screen, while I am on the subject of the front screen, the reviews I watched gave me the impression that the front screen would show the image, like the rear screen, this is not true, it only shows the film timer. So if you are doing a piece to camera, be prepared to have your head chopped off because there is no way of telling if you are in frame.
Once again, if there was a chance to talk with someone on the telephone this would have been one of my questions.


The rear screen is very handy and the settings can be easily reached, the FOV (field of view) option is greyed out when you have certain settings enabled, I did find on several occasions the camera had a mind of it’s own and switched from video to stills, so you thought you were filming but you actually took a picture.

The monitor at the rear is pretty unusable in sunlight, there are lots of shadows.

The buttons on the unit are pretty self explanatory, the external microphone plugs in to the Mini USB slot, and to the side is the Micro SD card slot

While we are on the subject of pictures, the picture image quality is on par with a set of crayons.

Stills of my XP Deus

This is set to the maximum size, which I feel is simply not good enough.

Stills of our vehicles

Today I decided to give the SJCAM a second try with the external microphone, and armed with an extra 2 batteries, and once again another epic disaster, once again, I had a bunch of stills when I should have had video and the audio quality from the external microphone was either choppy or clipped.

I will let you decide if the audio from the external microphone is acceptable.

That’s it for me, the SJCAM SJ6 legend is not the tool for the job, what really annoyed me was the lack of customer support, if there is support out there it needs to be made more accessable.
I refuse to give it any more head space, this lesson cost me just under £200.

Klaas John Botas a detectorist and artist

Gary interviews Klaas John Botas

Many of you may have seen or personally know Klaas, he’s a dedicated detectorist and always follows his heart and soul, Klaas John has such a presence you cannot fail to enjoy his company.
Although living in The Netherlands he visits Englands detecting fields on a regular basis and has been doing this for over 25 years.
Pic Klaa and Gary

Klaas John has a very special relationship with the UK. He regularly attends rallies and meetings all over the country.

He is Born from an English father and a Dutch mother, who met in the Netherlands just after the second world war.
In the Netherlands Klaas John is involved with the Dutch Detecting Association, who work very closely with the PAN, the Dutch equivalent to our PAS. He started as a member of board and nowadays he’s a writer for the Dutch Detecting magazine. Although officially retired as a member of board, he’s still involved in the clubs well-being; whenever there is a problem, he is always around to help.

Recently the Dutch Detecting Association knighted him as a honourable member. Klaas John is one of only 6 Honourable members in the Netherlands.

I managed to grab a coffee with Klaas John while visiting the Netherlands and wanted to share this interview.

Gary : Klaas John when did you start detecting?
For me detecting started at  a young age, I must have only been around 10 years old, I saved up to buy my first detector and was hooked on the hobby immediately. Throughout the years I have worked with all kinds of detectors from various brands.

Gary : I Know the answer but please tell the readers what your “Go to” machine is”
Nowadays my workhorse is the XP Deus with the 11 inch coil or the HF coil. I really love the machine, and think it’s almost perfect….. I know, almost !
Yes, there is always room for improvement, but for me that’s mainly on small things. I really love the way XP got things figured out. With the right program and settings you can go on almost any kind of terrain. When people ask me what kind of detector I use or what is the best program, I just return there question. I see a lot of ‘uncertain’ detectorists out there, and in many cases uncertainty can bring failure.
If the person detecting next to you finds a Gold ring.. It doesn’t mean you’ve got the wrong settings or machine. Just take your time to learn what your machine is capable of. If a program or detector works for me, it doesn’t mean that it will work for you. Give it, and yourself time to learn how to detect with what detector and which setting.”


Gary : What has been your most memorable find?

Over the years I have been lucky enough to make many spectacular finds; Silver, Gold, Hoards.

“My Anglo Saxon coin of Cynethryth, wife of King Offa is my most memorable. I still remember when I found it many moons ago. When I first held it in my hands I knew right away this was something special. When I recorded it they told me that it was only the second one known to exist, the other one was in the British museum, being in a more poor state. That’s when I get a buzz, knowing that you have added something to the heritage of the country. The fact that afterwards an object may have to be sold doesn’t concern me, It’s the feeling of recovering it after a long day of stubble bashing that will always be in my heard. The find after recovering it simply becomes an object, the feeling of finding it stays with you for life.”

Gary : I would love to know more about what do you do for a living?
I work as an artist under the name Botas. I am a painter and a sculpture. My paintings can best be described as modern symbolism; I like to combine elements of Cubism and Pop-art and in my paintings you see old symbols, which we can also see in our hobby, they can used to tell the story of the painting.

Gary: Why painting?
Painting has become my form of expression. Over the years I have taught myself various techniques and even invented some. Some of my work is recognizable by its bright colours and the use of powerful black outlines.

These powerful black outlines are painted in the traditional Japanese Shodō style;  “There is only one chance to create the perfect line with the brush. The brush strokes cannot be corrected. Even the smallest lack of confidence shows in the work. These brush strokes write a statement about me at that moment of time”. One of my latest works is ’80 years after’ Picasso made in 1937 his work about the bombing of Guernica during the Spanish civil war on the town of Guernica, this painting tells us 80 years forward, that not much has changed in the world.

“In this painting I wanted to express my feelings about the of the civil war in Syria, not only for the country itself, but also the consequences on a global scale. While the Arab spring flows like a wave over the Arab countries, these freeing waves are becoming bloody civil wars. Various groups in Syria are killing each other on the basis of their religion or origin. The major powers start to interfere in the fight, because they fight a war against terrorism and these terrorists have their Caliphate in Syria.”
The painting is painted in Symbolist style and tells you about the fight in Syria against its own people and foreign countries. The Arab spring is visible on the basis of the tottering ‘hand of Fatima flowers’. The three-unit soldiers stand for murder of opponents, suppression of the people (the veil) and attacks abroad. While the Sun is going down as a sign of a dark age, the effects are also noticeable in the West. The attack on the Office of Charlie Hebdo also enables our freedom of expression. In our own country the anti-Semitism seems to grow again. Many boats full of refugees making the journey across the Mediterranean in the hope (anchor) of a better future. The great powers, America and Russia are opponents again, America seizes over this war against terrorism with great force Russia puts its sickle onto the neck of America because they are supporting the reign of president Assad. This massive work, size: 245 x 110 x 4 cm is painted in Acrylic on Canvas.


Gary : Tell us about the Spooneys?

Besides painting I work on little sculptures called Spooney’s. It all started with a wood block and some spoons and  the first Spooney was born. This first Spooney gave me the idea to literally build my own world. A happy, positive and colourful world was to be.


Since then, there have been many Spooney’s made. Each Spooney’s is unique and is part of SpooneyWorld. A world full of fun, crazy, surprising, exciting and fun events. The Spooney’s are made of wood, metal and kitchenware.

In this SpooneyWorld you can see that I have even included my beloved detecting hobby along in it, as you have seen Gary detecting Spooney’s are being born on a regular basis. The detecting Spooney’s are collected by many of my detecting friends across the world.


John Spooney with his XP Deus metal detector is our latest addition, I am very pleased with the way he has turned out.

Gary : What are your dreams / goals for the future?
“For the hobby I hope I and It will be possible to go out detecting every now and then and see my friends here and across the pond, basically just having a good time. My biggest dream for my work is to make a animation movie with the Spooney’s, for young and old. Tell people great stories about life itself with humour and a tear. A bit like you can see what the Aardman studio’s are doing. Maybe I should get in touch with them” Klaas John smiles.

Gary : As always my friend it has been great talking with you, I very much look forward to meeting up again very soon.

If you like to follow Klaas John Botas or want to know more about his artworks or Detecting Spooney’s, please feel free to use one of these links below.

 

Official website Artworks: www.botasart.com

Official website Detecting Spooney’s: www.spooneyworld.com

Instagram Artworks: https://www.instagram.com/botas_art/

Instagram Spooney’s: https://www.instagram.com/spooneyworld/

Facebook Spooneyworld: https://www.facebook.com/spooneyworld/

Facebook Klaas-John: https://www.facebook.com/spooneyworld.botas

XP Deus the ultimate test

Not quite the Holy Grail of tests but a series of interesting metal detector tests you can try at home, we have used the XP Deus to demonstrate.
The video uses some standard test items to demonstrate the difference between 14Khz and 54Khz.

A Gold  earring used in the test

We all have our own views on air tests and quite rightly so, the video below demonstrates how the different frequencies perform with mineralised soil thrown into the equation, and proves why you must take site conditions into consideration when metal detecting.

Highly mineralised soil tests.

Even coins and artefacts on the surface can be overcome with the ground signal.
Using a higher frequency can lift the signal back into the good signal range.

Please try these tests at home and discuss it on the Detecting 101 Facebook page or  join our forum.

Here is the Deus High Frequency test video.

Metal detecting video tips part 2

OK so you have the equipment and you are ready to make your first metal detecting video, what happens now !
Just remember Whatever it is you’re producing, you’re not likely to be the first one to do so. The biggest challenge you will face is standing out from competitors in your field. What can you do to set your production apart from the rest out there ?

Times are changing I would be confident in saying approximately zero potential customers will likely read your thousand-word written explanation about why your metal detector is better than the next guy’s.
Visual content is so much more digestible, accessible, and shareable to the average person.
If you can, figure out a way to showcase your product or just yourself in a way that’s relatable and memorable.
Let’s go back a short step, I just said “why your metal detector is better than the next guy’s” which is something to give careful consideration, there is a very important question you need to ask yourself……What am I promoting ?

I am pretty sure you will be promoting something, that’s why you are making a video, are you promoting a product ?, are you promoting a particular skill, are you promoting a club ?…..Are promoting yourself !. If so this is the hardest thing to get right and if you get it wrong it will be a sure way of your viewers hitting the fast forward button.
As someone once said : Are they laughing at you or are they laughing with you ?


Ask yourself how many You Tube video’s are out there based on self promotion, sure some people are masters at this and do it in such a way you feel a connection with them, take Todd Roy for example a fast and witty comedian who you just love to watch, he is promoting himself but also telling a great story.

If you can pull it off, you will have them eating out of your hands and I wish you the very best. However if you don’t have Todd’s skills and charm…find another niche market.
Have you ever made a purchase just because you liked the personality of someone? this can be the same with visual content—perhaps a video—You instantly feel connected with them because they are just so likeable. Aim to create that kind of video content. If people decide they like you, they will be returning viewers.

Let’s not even go to the other side of self promotion : Glory hunters with a runny nose swearing and screaming down the camera on a windy field, yes we have all seen them. And I am not suggesting for one moment you are one of these people, but please be aware of what message you are portraying to younger viewers and possible future sponsors.


So basically to sum up this section, try to work out what you will be promoting and do it to the best of your ability,  try to think how the viewers will  interact with you.

Your ability

Be honest with yourself about your on-camera skills, if they are not great ask a friend who is more charismatic? Put him or her in front of the camera as the main character, you can still work as a team, but let them take the lead.
Talking into a mic and speaking to an unseen audience may seem easy, but it’s not. Do several takes, upload them all, and edit out awkward pauses and glitches afterwards. Practice trimming and splitting clips until your transitions look natural. Remember to keep continuity during filming, don’t change your shirt half way through.

The product

Make sure you know your product well, also never assume everyone else knows the ins and outs of your product, keep it simple and try to communicate with a wide range of skill levels.
If you’re marketing a metal detector try to create quality screen captures on video. Demonstrate the typical use of your product, but don’t jump right into it—use screen captures to demonstrate each point. If the viewer can identify with the item you’re showing them on-screen, they’ll be much more engaged.

Also let the viewers listen to the audio, rather than just showing you digging the target.

 Viewer retention

Believe it or not, not everyone will like you or want to sit through your video, even if it is short. Why should they? There are millions of other videos on the Internet, and some of them even have large breasts in them.
Figure out what value your video is going to offer to your audience. Does it tell a great story? Does it explain how to use the product ?
Think back to the last video you shared. Why did you share it? Chances are, if you’re like most people, you wanted to establish your authority on the topic. You wanted to be the first to present that piece of information to the people in your hobby. It’s why most content is shared—for the social credibility.

It all depends on the type of video but it is generally said the ideal length of time your video detecting video should run is 8 minutes with an intro of around 10 seconds. This is the ultimate viewer retention time…which I partly agree with but not always, if you have changing content the video can hold a longer audience retention.

Here is an example of a great video with interesting content, although it has nothing to do with metal detecting, it’s not even in English,  I am sure you will agree that the way it is filmed retains your attention.

Get out there

You’ve created a great piece of video content that showcases your personality, explains what you’re doing, has a clear benefit, and tells a great story. What do you do next?
Okay, this one is painfully obvious—you promote the heck out of it right !……Yes and no, please be respectful where you post it, don’t spam forums and other social media sites, try to be discrete.
Export your video to more than one platform. Some people watch on YouTube, some will only watch videos on Facebook. Don’t limit yourself to one platform, or you’ll miss out on a huge number of potential viewers.

Metal detecting video tips part 3 will be available soon, so stay connected to Detecting 101

Roman pig / Ingot bids reach £38.000 at auction

This little piggy went to market !!

Sadly the item did not reach the reserve price, the auction lasted about 45 seconds, there were very limited bidders.
Bidding started at £28.000 and the 4th bid was £38.000, so the hammer went down at £38.000.
The Roman ingot
Earlier this year the Roman lead ingot or “PIG” was unearthed on a farm in Somerset.
The dig was organised by the Southern Detectorist club, some other nice finds were made on the same day, such as Dan Stevenson’s Silver Roman Hoard.

Jason Baker discovered the “very rare” find – known as a pig, and like most of us had no idea what it was.

jason-2

The two foot ingot dates back to 164 AD and is inscribed with the name of emperor Marcus Aurelius Armeniacus.

Jason Baker had been searching with a faulty erratic search coil but had not replaced it, he said when his detector gave a loud sound I knew it was something good, “ I bet you did mate”.

When the Romans invaded Britain 2,500 years ago, they mined the lead, cast it into big lead blocks and put the emperor’s name on it and sent it back to Rome.

The ingot of Roman lead weighing six stone and two feet long  is believed to be dated from around from 164 AD and is inscribed with the name of emperor Marcus Aurelius Armeniacus.
We would like to wish Jason all the best for the future.

Metal detecting video tips part 1

Basic rules and equipment

There are so many metal detector users uploading metal detecting video’s to You Tube these days it is very difficult to stand out from the crowd, OK none of us are going to be film stars but there are some rules to follow in order to make your channel interesting to the public…Remember :  The You Tubers worst enemy is the fast forward button !.

I am by no means an expert on the subject and my experience is very limited compared to professionals, but hopefully with a bit of luck this article will give you some ideas and give you an insight into the correct set up and more importantly how to create interesting work and hold on to an audience.

Structure

Before you even go out with your camera you need to have a rough idea what your metal detecting video  or channel will be about…will it be based stories, technical items, will it be about you, your detector, your club and so on.
Remember you are trying to stand out from the crowd so some discipline and a professional outlook will be required, not to mention financial input.
You will also need to be prepared to go in front of the camera, initially to introduce your work, then some pieces to camera as your video gains momentum…A video showing a coil swinging and a muffled voice is not really what the public want to see, try to interact.

Look what I have found video’s
These are video’s that show the coil swinging and then someone holding a coin or artefact….What happened in between the sweep and the find ? the most interesting piece of work has not been shown !. Try to engage with your audience by showing the sweep, let them hear the tones and see you excavating the item.
OK now you are getting a rough idea what needs to be done in order to make your masterpiece, and you are probably thinking this is beginning to sound like hard work….You are right video making, even on a totally armature level is hard work but worth the effort.

Cameras

 A reasonably good HD video camcorder will be the one to go for, If you are serious about your video making find one with a hot shoe and an auxiliary microphone outlet.

ext-mic-socket
Why not use my smart phone or tablet  ?

A phone camera is not very good, focus is slow and the shaky footage is not going to get you many clicks. Remember the first rule of filming…Rubbish in = Rubbish out.
If your video sounds rubbish and looks rubbish, it will finish rubbish.

We use 2 camera’s the Sony PXW X70 and the Sony NX30, both are great units, the NX30 is smaller and much easier to travel with, both have fantastic stabilisation systems. These camera’s are overkill for You Tube video’s but are also used for promotional film work within the company.

how-to-make-a-metal-detecting-video
GoPro

Yes these are action camera’s, they have no zoom, and can be fiddly to operate, but on a plus point they have several accessories available. Providing they are set up and mounted correctly they can obtain good results. If using these action type camera’s we strongly recommend you invest an external audio source, which can get a little messy when editing in post.

This video was shot using a Gopro and an external sound recorder and joined together in post.

Sound quality

We can not emphasise how important good sound quality is to your video.
Sound quality is equally as important as video quality, nobody wants to watch a video with the wind howling in the background or the subject sniffing because he has a runny nose.
Earlier we mentioned the importance of a microphone outlet on your camera, this allows you to plug-in external microphones from powered Lavalier to radio microphones.

mic-range
Shotgun microphones can be used if you want to capture the ambience such as a rally or trade show, but for most videos a lavalier / lapel mic is the best choice.
If you are filming outside always use a wind shield on the microphone, this is known as a “Dead Cat”, these are quite expensive to buy but worth the investment.

sound-recording-options

External audio source

You can always record your audio on an external audio source, some people use their smart phone, this way works but is harder work as the audio and video must be exactly synchronised together in post.

If you want to go down the radio microphone route look at the Sennheiser radio models,  but take care of frequencies, some are forbidden to be used without a licence, find out about the free frequencies and licence laws for your country.

rad-mics

Tripod – Always try to use a tripod whenever you can.

The footage is much cleaner, walking around with go pro’s strapped to your chest or your machine are fun but not ideal, remember you want to be professional. This set up is ideal for “B” roll which we will be talking about in another article.

tpodVideo editing software

You need a good video editing software so you can edit your footage, commonly know as post production, or post.
You can get away with cheaper software, but what you can not get away with is a slow or under powered computer, windows lap tops can really struggle with video editing, unless you are prepared to spend £1000 plus.
You really need something with an i7 processor, at least 16GB of Ram and a high spec graphics card such as an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060, and at least 1TB of storage.
Top video editing suites are Adobe Premier Pro CC and for Mac users Final Cut Pro

pp

That’s just a very small insight into what equipment you may need to make semi professional video’s which will hopefully soar up the You Tube rankings and say goodbye to that fast forward button forever !.
Next we need to look at presentation and location.
Part 2 of our Metal detecting video tips will be available soon.
Latest news !!!
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Top metal detector dealer web site review

Building a metal detecting web site – a quick guide

Looking through hundreds of metal detector dealers web sites is now a part of my job, some are good while others are still stuck in the 90’s.
Occasionally there is a web site that ticks every box and gives the wow factor,  the Maison De La Detection web site in France really impressed me, these guys have a good eye for design and know how to engage with the public it hits an easy score of 10 / 10.

Maison de la detection our top choiceIt’s no surprise that these are probably the biggest dealer in France, just look at the work they put into it and the attention to detail.
http://www.maisondeladetection.com/

So what makes a good web site ?
Several things : For example if you are selling products you need to get all the important information up there without your site appearing cluttered, after all it is your shop window.
Above you can see how this is a perfect example, clean and precise.

Interacting with your public
Facebook and Twitter is a good social media platform but don’t rely on it solely as your empire, always put your web site first…Remember Facebook and Twitter can be removed in seconds…think about it.. you have no control over it. You can’t call Facebook to discuss problems, all you get is a generic Q&A, so it’s always good to remember this phrase – “Never build your empire on rented ground”.
It may also be worth noting you can spend a lot of time deleting Facebook comments and irrelevant posts, which is time that could be spent on your web site.

The guys at Maison De La Detection have got a good balance and a very active following.
This all takes time but in today’s world of social media it has to be done.

maison de la detection screen shot
Regular web site updates
Always keep the web site fresh with regular updates and special offers. Video’s are king, the public would much rather watch a video than strain their eyes looking at a large block of text, however the video’s must be good quality with interesting content and if possible no longer than 8 mins long.

Impressive pictures
It’s worth investing in a good camera and photo package, spend time watching video tutorials on how to use it’s features, learn about depth of field and special effects, these all make your pictures stand out from the rest. Don’t be tempted to upload super high quality images, Google does not like web sites that are slow to load, so try to find a sweet size for images.

Maison-de-la-detection-logo

So congratulations to Maison De La Detection, you get my top vote, sadly I can’t understand a word of French but I can see it’s a fantastic piece of work.

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Mirak Metal Detecting Boots

I am always in the market for good metal detecting products

Goot footwear is a very important part of my kit, most of the time I like to use lightweight metal detecting boots, they must be light – strong – water-resistant.
Over the years I have always used Brashers, my recent two pairs have fell apart within 6 months, I really don’t want to bad mouth the company but for me the Brasher relationship has ended.
I met up with a friend of mine who is the manager of Hildreth’s Stores in Prestwood, Buckinghamshire, 01494 862720,  he always gives me good honest advice about outdoor clothing….in exchange for good honest advice about metal detectors. You may see me wearing the Regatta Fleeces in my video’s, once again great advice from Martin, they have served me well.

hildreths prestwood
Hildreths Garden Centre Prestwood

Mirak Nebraska Boot information

The Subject got onto boots and the name Mirak Nebraska Boots came up into the conversation, he went on to say that the customer feedback so far was very good and priced at only £56.00 I decided to give them a try as I was no longer going to pay over £100 for another pair of metal detecting boots that fell apart after 6 months.
Brasher-boots-fell-apart

So what about the Mirak Nebraska Walking Boot

I am usually a size 8, but found the 7 fitted better, they are lightweight and feel really good, even better when you fit Scholl gel insoles, which I highly recommend.

Mirak Nebraska Boots

The in step is slightly raised and very solid I’m confident it will take spade pressure with ease, the tread is very chunky and looks like it is built to last.

Mirak Nebraska Boot tough tread

Time will tell I guess but for that price if I only get 6 months out of them it will be money well spent compared to my recent metal detecting boot purchases. So far all I can say is they are very comfortable and just “Feel right”

Mirak Nebraska Boot waterproof construction

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Metal Detecting – Dinosaurs

Metal detecting has been a part of my life for over 22 years

I have so many conversations with my friends reminiscing about the old days and how we made more finds with our old machines, some of it was very true…we did make some great finds,  how much is simply looking at the old days through rose-coloured glasses, was that hammered coin in 1992 really 14 inches deep and so on.

metal detector tests tesoro Minelab Whites
I am lucky enough to still have some of the old detecting dinosaurs mothballed in the cupboard, and true enough, each and every one has made some very impressive finds over the years.

metal detector tests old machines
The Minelab Explorer II
This has done some work, I got it from a guy in the club, who has now sadly passed away, he regularly had find of the month with this machine, it was worked every weekend and never cleaned, I gave good money for it as it was a “finder”…I have a theory on well used machines, to me it is a sign of someones first choice, a well used machine is normally a good one, or a lucky one depending on how you see things.

my trusty old Minelab Explorer II metal detector

The Whites XLT
Another well used ugly duckling, the guy before me had found two hoards with it and I wanted some of his luck, once again, never cleaned but a good finder, I can remember having a pocket full of Roman coins with this very XLT along with some fantastic artefacts.

my trusty old xlt metal detector

The XLT still has a Hinkley Search Society rally sticker on from 2001

Hinkley search society rally 2001

The Tesoro Silver Sabre
Void of any original paint and held together with camo tape, I fitted a manual coil tune control to it many years ago which I never used. This machine really did the business years back and found stuff the modern machines had left, I did a review on it Here is the review

metal detector tests tesoro silver sabre

OK so what is this article all about ?
I wanted to go down memory lane and see if I could re kindle my old love affairs with these machines, each machine would have 30 mins detecting time…followed by 30 mins with a modern metal detector, I chose the XP Deus lite with the WS 5 headphones.

My task was to see if these Dinosaurs could compete with today’s modern metal detectors.

Site conditions : Not a great field for finds, the stubble was well-rotted with bare patches, iron contamination pretty bad.

testing metal detectors

First off was the Explorer II, using an open screen, conductive and 28 sensitivity.
I thought the weight would be a problem, but it was fine, the Explorer II picked out some nice small targets with a low grunt, overall I was pretty pleased with it and thought to myself I should use this more often.
Then it was time for the XLT, Relic plus program
This machine really did show it’s age, finds were noticeably less and the audio very twitchy and uncertain, it really was not happy on this site.
The Silver Sabre, using disc 0 and sensitivity maximum
Once again it really showed it’s age, I just couldn’t get the feedback from it, which is something I have become comfortable with over the years, it was so silent to use and the experience can only be described as cold and un inspiring.

XP Deus lite test Ws5

Then I fired up the XP Deus Lite with the WS5 headphones, program 2 (Gold Maxx Power ) and changed to 2 tone

xp deus lite 2 tone
Instantly the whole field started talking to me, lots of Iron grunts and the non ferrous targets came through like switching a light on, I felt that I had to work very hard for signals when using the older machines, but the XP was like a magic carpet ride, it was literally doing everything for me, all I had to do was dig !

metal detector tests xp deus

My conclusion based on todays test
As you can imagine there are so many factors to take into account, coil size, frequency, price, are my machines past their best, etc, and no dis respect to them, they all have places where they would really shine, but on this field the only one that inspired me was the XP, followed by the Minelab Explorer II… So are modern machines better than the oldies…..you bet !….the oldies are still fun and will find stuff, but if you really want to get your head down and maximise your finds rate, based on my tests today, I personally think modern machines are King, with better feedback and information, better target separation, the overall experience is far more engaging.

Detecting finds after 30 minutes with each machine.

metal detecting finds

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