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Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: grumpy
Date: December 06, 2010 09:33PM
Can someone please inform me about the Minelab PI gold machines like the sd2100 an all the way up to the 4500 ; Is there really an advantage to get the new and blue machine? Or do the older like the sd2100 and such do a good job of gold detecting??
We want to get a pi machine but keep our budget within reason if possible, but we dont want to sacrafice performance if it is a great deal of diffeerence.
Thanks very much

Re: Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: UK Brian
Date: December 07, 2010 04:49AM
You should ask your question on one of the Aussie Gold forums. Many will say that if you add all the percentage depth gains claimed the new machines will be twice the depth which they are not. There's also a lot of one step forward and one back with many "improvements".

More important might be the repair situation. Little point saving money on a ten year old detector if you can't get it repaired.

Re: Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: grumpy
Date: December 08, 2010 01:05PM
UK Brian;
I thank you very much; I would say of all the years i have been metal detecting (not with pi)and posting on forums that your response to my questions were the best and most thoughtful and logical answers I ever received. Thank you.
Considering the dif of say 500 to 5000 purchase price to get started prospecting with the older PI technology would you agree it might be a good place to start?
Thanks again I appreciate your input much.

Re: Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: Reg
Date: December 08, 2010 07:21PM
Hi Grumpy,

You might want to read something posted on the nuggetshooter forum about the cost of repair of the older detectors before making a decision of going that route. One guy sent an older unit in for repair and the cost of repair was quite expensive ($461). Here is the link;

Drop down to the discussion about the GP 3500 and what the owner was told. It could make a difference in what you decide.

At least, it is something to think about.

Also, keep in mind that there are other PI's available that will work fine for nugget hunting.


Re: Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: UK Brian
Date: December 13, 2010 03:12AM
Thanks Grumpy....I'll put a cheque in the post !

Re: Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: grumpy
Date: December 13, 2010 09:57AM
Your welcome UK; BY the way do you or anyone know what the big dif between the 4000 ; 4500, 4800 and 5000 ; seems like to many numbrs playing with our heads? Is there really a dif in all the big $ machines??

Re: Minelab older PIs vs newer PIs ??s
Posted by: fredm
Date: December 17, 2010 09:16AM
What are the differences between a phone of 30 years ago versus now...every model improved in some way...but I still like using my Bell telephone with a rotary has the best sound quality of any available phone...

back to Minelab Pi's...the 2000 was the first and opened up the modern pi gold rush in Australia and here. The 2100,2200, GP Extreme, 3000, 3500, 4000, 4500 and now the 4800 and 5000...each one improved some things in the tuning and sensitivity areas. Every one is "better" than the previous the 4500 and 5000 are touted as being extremely sensitive to sub-grain nugglets ( goldbug stuff)...if that is what you want from a 5500 buck detector and you have the money...go for it.
Hot ground, Emi, descrimination, ease of use and sensitivity are where the newest minelabs shine...for depth on gram or bigger nuggets I doubt much has changed in detection ability, the ability of the detector to sort the gold signal from the ground matrix is a different matter....
this is getting too long...........
as was mentioned there are repair issues to beware of...check with Minelab before you buy a used unit...also there are Modders with spare parts you can find...
In case you are wondering, I have used the 2200, gp extreme, currently have a finally fully functional 3500, have used the 4000 and 4500...anyone of them has found me is not just the machine....
Now, my unasked for suggestion...
if money is no object buy a 5000 and learn to use it like your favorite toy...or, buy a good used minelab and practice, practice, practice...or, if you are into beach hunting, coin hunting and occassional nugget hunting consider the Whites TDI Oz version...if available...yes, I know they say you don't need the expanded Gb, but you may and you may want to stop by Oz on your way to ShangHi...who is Whites to limit your options??? Oops, there I go...
anyway you asked, I answered and I hope this helps...
merry christmas

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