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Analog vs Screen Machines

Dancer

Well-known member
There's always a debate. So watching the Forum's most of the postings tend to hunting old sites for Silver coins, and relics. Than Beach, shallow water. Park hunting rounds it out. Saying a hunter is past the newbie stage. What than makes someone decide on which one is best. The ole Beep & Dig or the newer Computer reliant machines. On the latter there is quite a hand full of successful machines to pick from. Since the fall of Tesoro Analog buzz has almost come to zero. As for me I've stayed with the Ole reliable AT Pro, The dated Garrett Infinium, but feeling the need for a newer powerful beeper I moved up to The Deep Tech Vista X. I'm 71 and my choices probably seem stale, buts they work well for me. In the end for a good hunt, it's up to the hunter to find a good site, have a machine he knows inside and out, and of course a dose of good luck doesn't hurt. Than choice of the different coils opens up another topic.
 

kittlitz

Active member
You have to understand your own strengths and weaknesses as a detectorist. I used screen machines for years, then tried a Tesoro more or less on a whim. I soon started finding more gold jewelry than I ever had with my TID machines. Not because the Tesoro was better than they were but because it was better for me. With a TID machine I tend to cherry-pick and talk myself out of digging the target. It's nice to be able to cherry-pick sometimes, but make too much of a habit of it and you'll wind up missing a lot of goodies.

Other folks may use TID machines more effectively than I do, and that's fine. I find I do better with audio-only machines, but certainly won't make any sweeping generalizations about how the two styles of detectors compare.

-Ken
 

RavRad

Active member
Ken's response sums up most of my thoughts perfectly. For me, even compared to the detector I have thousands and thousands of hours on which is the F75 platform, a Beep Dig machine produces better and more unique finds. Whether that be jewelry, or deep silver that might not have given the correct info to dig, o just random relics that don't fall anywhere is a typical coin hunters range, they just produce for me. I also like the slot machine part of the equation...I've never been one to thumb the discrim dials, as long as I'm getting clean audio I'm digging it.

I panic sold all my Tesoros when they folded, and finally, have a Deeptech Vista X delivering today. I've been without a Beep Dig for over a year and I miss it. There are times when I'm not in the mood for it, and I have the Equinox 800 and F75 for that also. Detectors for me are like fishing poles, I can't ever have too many.
 

chuck ky

Well-known member
Ken's response sums up most of my thoughts perfectly. For me, even compared to the detector I have thousands and thousands of hours on which is the F75 platform, a Beep Dig machine produces better and more unique finds. Whether that be jewelry, or deep silver that might not have given the correct info to dig, o just random relics that don't fall anywhere is a typical coin hunters range, they just produce for me. I also like the slot machine part of the equation...I've never been one to thumb the discrim dials, as long as I'm getting clean audio I'm digging it.

I panic sold all my Tesoros when they folded, and finally, have a Deeptech Vista X delivering today. I've been without a Beep Dig for over a year and I miss it. There are times when I'm not in the mood for it, and I have the Equinox 800 and F75 for that also. Detectors for me are like fishing poles, I can't ever have too many.
If you're only digging the clean audio signals you're missing a lot of good targets, I've dug at least 3 walking liberty halves that sounded really bad but the meter numbers were in the right range.
 

RavRad

Active member
If you're only digging the clean audio signals you're missing a lot of good targets, I've dug at least 3 walking liberty halves that sounded really bad but the meter numbers were in the right range.

You misread what I wrote. There is no meter to read, I was talking about my time with beep digs.
 

chuck ky

Well-known member
You misread what I wrote. There is no meter to read, I was talking about my time with beep digs
You misread what I wrote. There is no meter to read, I was talking about my time with beep digs.
That was my point, with only the sound to go by if you're only digging the clean sounding audio you're going to miss some good targets.
 

RavRad

Active member
It’s an odds game, and not all detectors audio response and modulation is the same. I’ve never dug a good target with the Vaauero or Mojave that had bad audio, and for the 1 or 2 in a hundred that may turn out to be something good the time wasted digging all the bad isn’t worth the time spent covering more ground and more good targets.

But not everyone is good at seeking permission and has to pound the same grounds, that might be a different story.
 

REVIER

Well-known member
I used both kinds over the years, an F2, an F70 and a Nox plus a Vaq, Compadre and a Mojave.
I found a ton with all of them including old coins and a lot of silver with my Tesoros and gold with the Compadre and Vaq.
I don't use the Mojave a lot so no gold with that one yet but I am sure it will happen one day.
There is no tone in our hobby as sweet as big gold sounds like when you roll over it with a Tesoro...it is that unique and every time I use one I am hoping to hear that beautiful tone just one more time.
I traded away my Vaq for the Mojave because that one had a hard time in my difficult soil but the Compadre and Mojave seem to handle it way better for some reason so they ain't going anywhere and I still pull them out once in awhile.

I have always said hunting with screens and hunting without are both very productive and a ton of fun but in different ways, (for me, anyways), and also that everyone should get some experience hunting by audio only because that actually can make you a better hunter when you use screen units.

I also believe Tesoro buzz has died down on the forums because of several things...nobody complains anymore about why that company won't come out with new products which was a big part of that buzz plus many did sell theirs when the company died but I don't know why since these things are built like tanks.
The rest of us are still out there using that company's products and are so busy finding treasure we just don't have a whole lot of time to post about them. (HA!)

That Vista does look interesting, also.
 
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Ron from Michigan

Moderator
Staff member
The Sovereign is probably one of the best detectors to search parks. The ID is primitive but deep, if you get a blip of a sound on this unit you can get a quick visual ID on a deep target.
 

coinspader

Well-known member
My preferred beep and dig is my Musketeer Advantage, deep high conductors have a sweet high pitched whisper that is unmistakable, it will occasionally hit on deep big iron but it is not hard to size your target with a Musky, when I am out with it I describe the hunt as whispers and shouts, I dig the whispers and I leave the shouts. It is also a very deep detector and with the small TS 800 coil it will pick out good targets in iron infested areas with the best of them.
 

bigtim1973

Well-known member
There is only a small portion of companies still making beep n dig units.
There are more gold machines that do not have a screen than there are relic and coin units now.
 

Sven

Well-known member
This is my current beeper. Blisstool V5. Done a few mods to it and its really an excellent park, schoolyard detector with the smaller 7x9 search coil.
 

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IowaRelic

Well-known member
Sven, that thing is a monster. Have you got it mastered?

maybe I should dust off the vaquero. It was my first machine. I just dug way too much iron with it. It loves deep iron and It wouldn’t disc out square nails most of the time. I think I always ran it too hot for the site conditions thinking I needed it screaming to get the goods. To me a low-hi tone break knob would replace a disc knob. I never caught on to hunting through all the clicks and pops.
When I bought the T2 I fell in love with with just digging all non-ferrous tones regardless of the number. That produced a lot like a beep and dig.
 
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Sven

Well-known member
Really not that big of a control box and with the 7x9 coil, rather comfortable to use detector.
Really easy to use and set-up. The amount of controls make it look intimidating and scare people away from it. Just like the older White's, Teknetics, etc. from the 70-80's that also had a lot of controls.
The problem most had with the Blisstools is adjusting the controls way to hot and it then being unstable. The circuits were over driven, like putting Boeing 747 jet engines on a small Cessna Piper airplane.
Take for instance several controls on the V5 for the most part are not adjusted higher than 2 out of 10 possible adjustments on the dial. Folks have a tendency, used to to running up to full bore on other brands and model detectors. Well, full bore of those machines is equal to settings 3 on the V5. The V5 has extended range which was for the most part unusable but, there for those situations can be usable by adjusting other settings downward. Give and take set-up of settings to make it usable and stable but, not necessarily any deeper performer. First thing to mod was the controls of certain pots to spread out the control settings of 0-2 over the settings 0-7. Another issue was being difficult to ground balance, had to be about spot on. Has a coarse and fine GB pots. A 10 turn pot would have solved the problem, not possible to obtain one in the ohm value. Blisstool used cheap pots like most manufactures, tuning is not precise. When you move the control just a tiny bit it will adjust lets say 10 points, if the ideal setting was at 5 points, you'll never get it. I switched to expensive sealed precision pots. Now just a tiny bit of adjustment will be 1 point. A precision pot is a good alternative to a 10 turn pot. In a nut shell, by spreading the lower control settings over a large rotation of the pot and using precision pots will make the Bliss V5 easier and quicker to set-up with a better range of control. And you still retain the upper end over drive settings if and when they can be used. Like any other detector, it has controls once you find the settings you like, no need to adjust them, leave them be. Can be a turn on and go detector--- set Gain-Sensitivity, ground balance.

Disc controls can be confusing as there are 3 toggle switch positions and Disc control pots. Kind of a notching switching between toggle settings. Works in conjunction with the Disc level control. What the V5 has that most detectors do not is a Disc Depth control. Which have been factory preset and not adjustable in any way. And anything beyond a certain depth will be ID's as iron. The Bliss V5 Disc Depth allows you to dial in how deep you want disc. to function. So you have this extra control that can prove to be valuable in many situations.

If someone can understand how basic controls work and interact on many detectors, then by adding some other adjustable controls to compliment them, as with the Blisstool, it can be an easy to use and set-up detector. With the Bliss, you have to control the urge to over adjust the controls. It's like a timid kid which can be turned into a raging, out of control Werewolf. Hence the name of the Blisstool--The Beast.

With some pot mods and the Bliss V5 using the 7x9 coil, its a wonderful park, school yard metal detector, and stable. Has excellent discrimination settings with the ability to disc out can slaw and still get the good stuff. It has become easy for me to ID targets by the excellent single tone audio and duration of the target audio response. I would venture to say, tamed down it has the "sensitivity and depth" comparable to the Tesoro Tejon with the stock 8x9 coil.

Doubt I have mastered the Bliss, have an extensive file folder with tons of info that helped me digest the operation of the Bliss and see some of its short comings that could have made it a more user friendly detector than most have found it to be. It has a learning curve, once you get your head wrapped around how the controls work and put some time into using the Bliss, its not a difficult detector to use.

Just wonder how many Blisstool detectors currently sit in closets?
 

therover

Well-known member
My preferred beep and dig is my Musketeer Advantage, deep high conductors have a sweet high pitched whisper that is unmistakable

You are so right about that. I had one but sold it...wish I didn't. I can still remember that Musky sound of silver. It even worked well on the salt water beaches I hunted for being a single freq unit. Cool machine.
 

Monte

Well-known member
An older post brought back to life eight months later, but interesting. However, you mixed the categories. Analog would be a reference to circuitry design, such as Analog Vs Digital, or for some models more of a blended Analog/Digital design with some of the older transition models such as the White's XLT. "Screen Machines" is simply a reference to a category of models that have a Visual Target ID display, from simple to complex. A model that lacks any visual display we often assign to a category often referred to as "Beep-DIG!" because the operator is relying only on the Audio response and Discrimination level, with a simple approach to recover or Dig any accepted target that Beeps. In the end we might select either an Analog or Digital circuitry detector that might or might-not feature a visual display.

There's always a debate. So watching the Forum's most of the postings tend to hunting old sites for Silver coins, and relics. Than Beach, shallow water. Park hunting rounds it out. Saying a hunter is past the newbie stage. What than makes someone decide on which one is best. The ole Beep & Dig or the newer Computer reliant machines.
I consider the amount and length of time I have been enjoying this great sport, initially and currently for Coin & Jewelry Hunting, but a huge portion of it as a dedicated 'old-site' Relic Hunter, as being well beyond the 'newbie stage.' Through these many decades I have made it a point of interest to learn all I can about newer models that come n the scene, and evaluate their worthiness to fit into my personal detector outfit. Some do, others don't, and all for an assortment of reasons. Since late '71 and early '72 I have always had at least 2 to 4 detectors in my outfit, and since the latter '90s I generally maintain a group numbering six or more, and often more because i will not only own different makes and models, but duplicates of some models just to keep a different search coil mounted.

As an example, as of early this morning my Detector Outfit is made up of:

2- Garrett Apex
1- Makro Racer 2
1- Nokta FORS CoRe
1- Nokta FORS Relic
2- Nokta / Makro Simplex +
1-Minelab Vanquish 540
2- Tesoro Bandido II microMAX
1-Tesoro Silver Sabre microMAX
1- White's XLT

I'll possibly be adding one or more of the six detectors I just bought to do a multi-model product review, and I might thin out one or two from the above list. Note that some of my favorite models are display-less and are in the 'Beep-DIG!' category, while the bulk of the models do feature a visual Target ID display. However, I rely on, or at least take a look at, a visual TID response most of the time when doing any urban Coin Hunting based upon the type of site and the amount of, and type of, modern trash I encounter. When I am Relic Hunting older, out-of-the-way locations, it doesn't matter which particular detector I have in-hand, i am relying on hearing an Audio response and then I take the 'Beep-DIG!' approach to finding and recovering a located target. I seldom glance at the numeric VDI read-out because too many good targets read bad, and too many good targets are masked or partially masked and give errant read-outs, and i know some bad targets are going to display as a 'good' find. Audio is king.


On the latter there is quite a hand full of successful machines to pick from. Since the fall of Tesoro Analog buzz has almost come to zero. As for me I've stayed with the Ole reliable AT Pro, The dated Garrett Infinium, but feeling the need for a newer powerful beeper I moved up to The Deep Tech Vista X.
As you see, i also like to have some 'old reliable' detectors on-hand, such as my XLT, that I bought first in June of 1994, and my two all-time favorite Tesoro models that were introduced in October of 1997. The others I have added from January of '15 to just the past month or two, and in every case they have each shown me some in-the-field performance as well as physical design that makes them a 'fit' in my detector group. Since late June I did buy a couple of Vista X models with their smaller 5¾" DD coil, and to be honest I really liked the performance they can provide. However, I let them go mainly because I am so comfortable with my Tesoro's and other units. I just had too many detectors, and health limitations are cutting in to how much detecting time I can put in.

I'm 71 and my choices probably seem stale, buts they work well for me. In the end for a good hunt, it's up to the hunter to find a good site, have a machine he knows inside and out, and of course a dose of good luck doesn't hurt. Than choice of the different coils opens up another topic.
I'm now 71 also, and I have no doubt some folks think my detector selection is a bit 'stale' in their opinion, too. But, like you said, what I have I like and they work for me, and in the end that's what really matters. As for search coils, yes, that can be a different topic. I usually only have 1 or 2 coils I keep for each detector. I mount a preferred coil on each model and seldom swap coils. I simply grab a different detector with the coil I want to use. That's one reason I own two of some models, because I like the detector and keep different coils mounted on similar devices. Just waiting for a smaller-size coil from Garrett and Nokta / Makro for the Apex and Simplex +.

Monte
 
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Dancer

Well-known member
An older post brought back to life eight months later, but interesting. However, you mixed the categories. Analog would be a reference to circuitry design, such as Analog Vs Digital, or for some models more of a blended Analog/Digital design with some of the older transition models such as the White's XLT. "Screen Machines" is simply a reference to a category of models that have a Visual Target ID display, from simple to complex. A model that lacks any visual display we often assign to a category often referred to as "Beep-DIG!" because the operator is relying only on the Audio response and Discrimination level, with a simple approach to recover or Dig any accepted target that Beeps. In the end we might select either an Analog or Digital circuitry detector that might or might-not feature a visual display.


I consider the amount and length of time I have been enjoying this great sport, initially and currently for Coin & Jewelry Hunting, but a huge portion of it as a dedicated 'old-site' Relic Hunter, as being well beyond the 'newbie stage.' Through these many decades I have made it a point of interest to learn all I can about newer models that come n the scene, and evaluate their worthiness to fit into my personal detector outfit. Some do, others don't, and all for an assortment of reasons. Since late '71 and early '72 I have always had at least 2 to 4 detectors in my outfit, and since the latter '90s I generally maintain a group numbering six or more, and often more because i will not only own different makes and models, but duplicates of some models just to keep a different search coil mounted.

As an example, as of early this morning my Detector Outfit is made up of:

2- Garrett Apex
1- Makro Racer 2
1- Nokta FORS CoRe
1- Nokta FORS Relic
2- Nokta / Makro Simplex +
1-Minelab Vanquish 540
2- Tesoro Bandido II microMAX
1-Tesoro Silver Sabre microMAX
1- White's XLT

I'll possibly be adding one or more of the six detectors I just bought to do a multi-model product review, and I might thin out one or two from the above list. Note that some of my favorite models are display-less and are in the 'Beep-DIG!' category, while the bulk of the models do feature a visual Target ID display. However, I rely on, or at least take a look at, a visual TID response most of the time when doing any urban Coin Hunting based upon the type of site and the amount of, and type of, modern trash I encounter. When I am Relic Hunting older, out-of-the-way locations, it doesn't matter which particular detector I have in-hand, i am relying on hearing an Audio response and then I take the 'Beep-DIG!' approach to finding and recovering a located target. I seldom glance at the numeric VDI read-out because too many good targets read bad, and too many good targets are masked or partially masked and give errant read-outs, and i know some bad targets are going to display as a 'good' find. Audio is king.


As you see, i also like to have some 'old reliable' detectors on-hand, such as my XLT, that I bought first in June of 1994, and my two all-time favorite Tesoro models that were introduced in October of 1997. The others I have added from January of '15 to just the past month or two, and in every case they have each shown me some in-the-field performance as well as physical design that makes them a 'fit' in my detector group. Since late June I did buy a couple of Vista X models with their smaller 5¾" DD coil, and to be honest I really liked the performance they can provide. However, I let them go mainly because I am so comfortable with my Tesoro's and other units. I just had too many detectors, and health limitations are cutting in to how much detecting time I can put in.


I'm now 71 also, and I have no doubt some folks think my detector selection is a bit 'stale' in their opinion, too. But, like you said, what I have I like and they work for me, and in the end that's what really matters. As for search coils, yes, that can be a different topic. I usually only have 1 or 2 coils I keep for each detector. I mount a preferred coil on each model and seldom swap coils. I simply grab a different detector with the coil I want to use. That's one reason I own two of some models, because I like the detector and keep different coils mounted on similar devices. Just waiting for a smaller-size coil from Garrett and Nokta / Makro for the Apex and Simplex +.

Monte
Very well thought out Monte. Bet you could clear up a question I have a couple posts down. ( maybe you have run across this)
 
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