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Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: January 13, 2016 10:28AM
Hey guys. I have a Garrett AT Pro and I had an Etrac. Foolishly I sold the Etrac because I needed cash but I feel I should have hung on to it. I'm thinking to replace it but Im looking at the Minelab Safari very closely as well.

I know it shares the same FBS multi frequency technology and coil as the Etrac. i have read all the threads on the machine and from what I understand some have said its a repackaged Quattro. Some have said it an entirely new machine with much faster recovery than the Quattro. Some have said it pales in comparison to the Etrac. Some have said it can keep up with the Etrac. To add to it there aren't any videos on Youtube doing a real world comparison of the two. It seems to me that this machine has become a victim of much speculation and is highly underrated.

The Etrac I owned was a very good machine. It went deep but it wasn't a magic wand for silver in my experience. You still had to get the coil over the silver and it couldn't make silver appear where there was none...lol. And when I was over silver dimes it was not like "oh 12-46 guaranteed silver" many many times it was a penny. And silver dimes would come in anywhere from 12-43 to 12-46. A silver quarter was a 12-47 usually but that was no guarantee because many times it was a piece of copper tube or some other junk. So in essence you still had to dig everything in the 12-40's to get silver. In a heavily trashy park going slow through the trash you would have to dig many convoluted iffy high tones masked and altered by the trash but she could sniff the silver out nonetheless. Again though there was no guaranteed silver.

So that brings me back to the Safari. From what I've read silver comes in from 35-39. With 39 being the magic number. You still get that sweet Etrac silver high tone but you need to dig all the pennies to be sure its silver. Same as the Etrac. I am also wondering how much slower the recover is on the Safari compared to the Etrac? Is it really $600 slower? Then theres the discrimination...when I had the Etrac I could mask everything out and just hunt silver and the machine was quiet unless I hit silver. Can the Safari disc all the junk out and stay quiet until it hits silver?

So has the safari been underrated because beginners would go for a cheaper machine and more serious detectorists would just jump right to an Etrac without giving the Safari a chance? I know the Etrac has more "bells and whistles" lol but all I care about is finding silver. I have seen a lot of speculation and opinions about this machine without any hard evidence. Like some said it has a Quattro PC board inside...but wheres the pictures? I did manage to find a Youtube video where a guy puts a backlight inside and has the control box apart. I looked very hard on the PC boards and didnt see "Quattro" anywhere. And theres no direct video comparisons at all showing depth, discrimination and target ID accuracy ofvthe Etrac and the Safari.

So in the end the same question prevails....Etrac or Safari?? :shrug:



"Women might be able to fake orgasms. But men can fake a whole relationship." - Sharon Stone

"The more I know people...the more I like my dog" - Mark Twain

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCt5w7O14KJVZymZ0ue__Dag/videos



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/13/2016 10:35AM by cashmole.

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Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: KinTN
Date: January 13, 2016 10:42AM
I cant speak to the eTrac but when the Safari sees silver, theres no mistake whatsoever. 99%+ of the time its a 39 and 100% of the time you get that sweet silver sound ime. Whatever shortcomings others may think it has, no one who has used one for any length of time faults a Safari's silver abilities.



Minelab CTX 3030
Minelab Excalibur II
Minelab Safari

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: January 13, 2016 10:59AM
I notice that you have a CTX as well. Can the Safari stay quiet over trashy areas like on a CTX and just hear the high tones? How much slower is the recovery?

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Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: KinTN
Date: January 13, 2016 12:37PM
Noticeably slower. But you'd expect that for the price difference. Its a factor in a buying decision, but it isn't all that bad imo. I have read on forums that Minelab intentionally clocks back the Safari to fill a niche- take that fwiw. pls note that slow only means slow relative to other FBS machines. I don't know enough to judge other brands.

One thing chiseled in stone for me is that if you are in a prolonged null (but not an OVERLOAD) and sweep over a piece of silver, the Safari sings the silver song and does so with authority. I think of it as the machine's Prime Directive: "if you see silver, stop EVERYTHING else and signal silver". If I was simply going to cherry pick a site of silver only, I would not be undergunned with only a Safari + the appropriate coil for the site. I am also of the opinion that allowed targets will override the null as well. I used to get within inches of hurricane fencing(sweeping parallel, stock coil), running a complete null, and still have allowed signals punch thru.

One advantage that I think you will have if you go with a Safari is that you had an eTrac. My understanding of what my Safari was trying to tell me was exponentially increased when I started using the CTX. Seeing the screen + hearing the tones + digging the targets really cleared up in my mind many of the ambiguous sounds I was hearing with the Safari. I am a much better Safari user because of it (tho I rarely take it out anymore; just keep it as a backup machine).

Again, this is just my opinion, but other than the waterproofing of the CTX, the decision of which FBS to buy is more about economics of an individual's wallet (and maybe how seriously he wants to be in the hobby) than anything else.



Minelab CTX 3030
Minelab Excalibur II
Minelab Safari

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Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: KinTN
Date: January 13, 2016 12:42PM
btw, I have a great deal of respect for the ATP. If I couldn't have a Minelab FBS, its what I would buy.



Minelab CTX 3030
Minelab Excalibur II
Minelab Safari

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: January 13, 2016 01:53PM
Thanks for that great reply KinTn. The fact that this is coming from a guy that runs a CTX and a Safari gives it an experienced comparison. This clears up a big unknown for me as I wasn't sure if the Safari can run quiet (nulling) all the iron and foil mid tones out and still hit silver while in a null. Great to know and Im sure many others would like to know this as well.
That was how my Etrac ran...quiet and only hit high tones.

As for my At Pro I feel its a great machine that once you learn becomes a weapon. I dig almost zero bottlecaps, pull tabs, foil and iron. Its gets fooled by old twist off caps occasionally. But it has got me about 85 percent of my silver this year with 120 silver coins, plus rings, necklaces etc. I was cherry picking with it and it works well at that. And I can still hit nickels. I never was looking for gold so no gold unfortunately. For 2016 it will be my rain and gold hunting machine.

Another thing. I used my ATP more because I left it in my trunk ALL summer in 100+ degree temps in my car cooking for hours on end with no issue. I didnt want to leave my Etrac in the car in the heat. I wonder how the Minelabs take extreme heat for long periods?

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: January 13, 2016 05:05PM
Speaking of the AT Pro I was shocked to see it did better on Monty's nail board test than a CTX, Etrac AND Safari!

ATPro. http://youtu.be/ZmmsGTtN6O8
SAFARI http://youtu.be/LCy71k2yVY8
ETRAC http://youtu.be/X6X4uY98hkU
CTX http://youtu.be/djaAuDvdWpo

Kind of shocking to watch all three. The Safari fared about as well as the Etrac.

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Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: KinTN
Date: January 13, 2016 07:07PM
Yeah, FBS don't do well in air.
+, as many before me have said, the most important detector is organic and his time/experience with his machine. Watch people hunt side-by-side and see who switches to the other fella's machine. That is more of a true test to me.

Haven't really left a detector in the truck for a long time in the heat, so I cant speak to that. I'm too paranoid about frying all that money I guess.

btw, when hunting with experienced ATPers, they ALWAYS bring home a great deal more wheats than me. Those ATPs are wheat magnets!



I hate throwing you a curve, but if it was me, I'd either keep the ATP or save up for a CTX. If you get outhunted by a FBS it wont be by much since you already know your machine so well.

Also, as a disclaimer, while I keep the Safari as a backup, I plan on selling it when my wife retires and takes up detecting with me. For weight reasons (the machine's, not her's!!!), I'm going to get her a Deus and wont have a need for the Safari at that point. I got into the Safari to test the FBS waters and was pleased. My plan was to get the CTX when wife retired but a hunt buddy got one, hated it, and went back to his ATP. I kept telling him you have to learn/study FBS and it just takes some time, but he has less patience than I do. So I bought his with maybe 20 hours on it.



Minelab CTX 3030
Minelab Excalibur II
Minelab Safari



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/13/2016 07:08PM by KinTN.

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: petew
Date: January 14, 2016 05:57PM
Quote
KinTN
Noticeably slower. But you'd expect that for the price difference. Its a factor in a buying decision, but it isn't all that bad imo. I have read on forums that Minelab intentionally clocks back the Safari to fill a niche- take that fwiw. pls note that slow only means slow relative to other FBS machines. I don't know enough to judge other brands.

One thing chiseled in stone for me is that if you are in a prolonged null (but not an OVERLOAD) and sweep over a piece of silver, the Safari sings the silver song and does so with authority. I think of it as the machine's Prime Directive: "if you see silver, stop EVERYTHING else and signal silver". If I was simply going to cherry pick a site of silver only, I would not be undergunned with only a Safari + the appropriate coil for the site. I am also of the opinion that allowed targets will override the null as well. I used to get within inches of hurricane fencing(sweeping parallel, stock coil), running a complete null, and still have allowed signals punch thru.

One advantage that I think you will have if you go with a Safari is that you had an eTrac. My understanding of what my Safari was trying to tell me was exponentially increased when I started using the CTX. Seeing the screen + hearing the tones + digging the targets really cleared up in my mind many of the ambiguous sounds I was hearing with the Safari. I am a much better Safari user because of it (tho I rarely take it out anymore; just keep it as a backup machine).

Again, this is just my opinion, but other than the waterproofing of the CTX, the decision of which FBS to buy is more about economics of an individual's wallet (and maybe how seriously he wants to be in the hobby) than anything else.


That was a very informative post,and your spot on from my short experience with the Safari.I recently bought a xterra 705 because the weight of the Safari really seemed a tad much.Even though the xterra is no doubt lighter,I feel the Safari is better balanced.You really make me wanna pull my safari ad,and keep it.One thing about KinTN,,he's always very honest,and knows what he's talking about.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/14/2016 06:00PM by petew.

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: January 15, 2016 06:22PM
Thanks to both of you guys for the great info. The weight on my Etrac was a bit much, Im guessing like the Safari, so I made my own harness from a Condor battle belt and H-harness. I used a bungee cord from the shoulder D-ring and attached it to both ends. The end at the Etrac had a climbing caribiner as a quick way to disconnect from the harness. It all works great to support the detectors weight.

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Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: KinTN
Date: January 15, 2016 08:00PM
Sounds like that ought to work well. Good Huntin!



Minelab CTX 3030
Minelab Excalibur II
Minelab Safari

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: February 03, 2016 09:27PM
Quote
petew
That was a very informative post,and your spot on from my short experience with the Safari.I recently bought a xterra 705 because the weight of the Safari really seemed a tad much.Even though the xterra is no doubt lighter,I feel the Safari is better balanced.You really make me wanna pull my safari ad,and keep it.One thing about KinTN,,he's always very honest,and knows what he's talking about.

Just curious...how come you sold the Safari after such a short time? You had an Etrac and sold that for the Safari. Was it just the weight? How did the Safari compare?

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: petew
Date: February 04, 2016 03:10PM
I liked he safari and the etrac,and yes it was a weight issue.i have a 705 gold now,and it's unbelievable light.But,I do miss the fbs,they just work,hit hard and without even trying.i have a docs swingy thing,and it's great for weight reduction but it gets in the way.Im not a fan of small coils because I usually hunt fields and big yards,but that might hafto change .I think the safari is just as good as a etrac,just lacks settings.Some say those settings it lacks make it a lesser machine,I call it easier.

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Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: The Magician
Date: March 17, 2016 05:19AM
Quote
cashmole
Speaking of the AT Pro I was shocked to see it did better on Monty's nail board test than a CTX, Etrac AND Safari!

ATPro. http://youtu.be/ZmmsGTtN6O8
SAFARI http://youtu.be/LCy71k2yVY8
ETRAC http://youtu.be/X6X4uY98hkU
CTX http://youtu.be/djaAuDvdWpo

Kind of shocking to watch all three. The Safari fared about as well as the Etrac.

These type of nail board tests are charlatan level poor because they have the object perfectly level with low conductive objects.

1 Most of the time, junk is going to be above than the old coin that you're trying to get, the more shallow the junk object is over the good target, the more of an "umbrella" masking effect it's going to have.
2 The higher the conductivity, the more it's going to mask, the lower the conductivity, the weaker it is at masking. Iron is actually weak at masking it's just that there's lots of it and some are large.
3 Minelabs don't do well in air tests, everyone should know that by now.

These tests only give a false understanding, in-ground the exact oposite is often true as I have found in my experience. I have seen $60 Kmart detectors do well in these "targets are comfortably parrallel to each other" tests. I use both Tesoros and an Explorer and FBS and BBS machines constantly do poorly in these tests and Tesoros do well. In-ground, it's a different story.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/17/2016 05:26AM by The Magician.

Re: Another Minelab Safari vs Etrac thread :shrug:
Posted by: cashmole
Date: March 24, 2016 11:36PM
Thanks for that reply Magician. :smile: I did end up buying a Safari after all but I haven't got around to putting it together yet and there's still snow on the ground here. Once I get out into the field I will write my impressions here.

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