The Equinox Infatuation

How’s Yours Working for You?

As long as I’ve been involved with the pastime there’s always been excitement when rumors surface that a manufacturer would soon be introducing a new model. Not long ago we had the XP Deus, the MX Sport, the AT Max and most recently the Minelab Equinox.

The advance hype for the Equinox was over-the-top and a job well done for the company’s marketing department. We waited with bated breath for the unveiling at Detectival 2017 and then witnessed it’s delivery via skydivers. I mean jeezus, what could be more dramatic?

Well here’s my take and my response to that last question. Why introduce something that was not quite ready for market?  Apparently there were glitches, deficiencies and/or parts problems and all that excitement resulted in long waits and grumbling for those who ordered early. Well here it is ten months later, they’ve been shipped and I’m still waiting for all the accolades.

I understand the need, dumb as it is, to have the newest, coolest looking detector, no matter the cost but face it, the hype, the anticipation and the actual performance rarely ever meets our expectations. At least that’s been my experience

So what will be the next big, have to have, meanest looking, bad ass detector on the market? Which manufacturer are you putting your money on (pun intended) and can you wait or is your hard-earned money burning a hole in your pocket? I’m guessing it’s the latter.

I’ve been there, done that, spent money I didn’t have, and learned from it all. As I’ve aged it has become easier for me to understand that patience is indeed a virtue. On the other hand it’s your right and your prerogative to spend your money any damn way you see fit. I hope however that just maybe the Equinox experience will make you a little more discerning and a little wiser.

Now, shoot me down and tell me how that Equinox is killing it and forcing you to retire years ahead of schedule. Who knows I just might take my wine money to buy one?  No, hold on, wait a minute, forget it, that’s not going to happen….


I’ve said before that you will find new items at old sites with a new detector, but you will also find them with the old model if you pretend it’s new.  

Is it the Detector or is it You?



Filed under Metal Detecting

27 responses to “The Equinox Infatuation


    Hi Dick. How true. I managed to assuage my desire to own one mainly due to the over the top marketing. What’s amazing is that actually the only additions the Equinox has over a V3i is two more frequencies and it’s waterproof. It’s only taken 10 years for Minelab to catch up.:):) After overcoming a mental aberration I ditched one of my new detectors (not a Minelab) and have gone back to a V3i. It was, after all responsible for my best early finds despite me not knowing what I was doing. Now that I nearly know what I’m doing I realise,as you’ve wisely said, that learning your machine is crucial. It’s been beneficial to me to gain insight from someone who’s been there, seen it and done it. The humour helps too.
    Got to love Texas. If a sign like that was put up here in the UK it wouldn’t be the trespasser who got arrested.
    All the best from an unusually sunny Eastbourne.

    • John, I know I revisit this subject a lot but the current Equinox craze just got to me. Yes it’s a “new” machine, a “spiffy looking” machine, a “lightweight” machine, etc., etc., but will it outshine all the others on the market? I somehow doubt it and as soon as the next new model comes on the scene it will be relegated to just “another very good detector” and there’s nothing wrong with that label.

      Old age and a very limited income makes my stance even easier….

      Glad you’re seeing the sun. I’ll send you all the damn sun you want. Just ask. We’re entering that long, hot and dry period where you get sick of it. As for the sign, I once approached someone here to ask about his neighbors property and he told me to stay away from him because he’s crazy and would shoot me first. Here’s the link…

      Damn Glad I Asked

  2. heavymetalnut

    you spelted perogative rong!

  3. heavymetalnut

    oops no you didn’t lol I hated English!

  4. Yo Ricardo:
    Will it find coins that aren’t there? If it can, it’s worth the money, but as WC Fields once said, “Never give a sucker an even break.” Its launch certainly was a great PR job let’s hope it can live up to the promise.

  5. Ed B.

    Wow ! Skydivers !!! That alone might make me want to rush out and get one but I would be afraid of getting trampled to death in the stampede. Excellent points Dick….

    • I give them credit Ed….great hype, great launch but bad delivery.

      Having experienced the marketing thing at Garrett I’m guessing the big wheels were saying “we need to get this to market” while the engineers and field testers were saying “hold on, we need to fix it first”…. Guess who won out?


    Too hot for me Dick so I’ll decline the offer of your sun but thanks for the thought. :):) Well or short hunt with the V3i yielded a 1948 sixpence and a 1957 shilling so I won’t be doing the gold dance just yet. However it was good to feel comfortable with the machine. Just like meeting up with an old friend. True to form I only adjusted the rx gain, discrimination sensitivity and switched on vco. I now need to drink lots of tea before I evaporate.

  7. Tony

    Dick, I bought into the hype and wanted to buy one really bad so I emailed a dealer that I thought I knew really well, only because his store was closed that day of the release. I never heard back from him but assumed I was on the pre-order list. Low and behold I find out maybe a month later that he doesn’t do emails! To me this was crazy – then why have it as an option on your web site? Now I am waiting for the Equinox 2 to come out and see what additional new options they put into it to making it new and improved?

    • See? They got you Tony. Best thing since white bread…. If that money is burning a hole in your pocket send it to me and I’ll be sure you get the next updated model when it comes out. And would I lie to you?

  8. Joseph J Sherrod

    I think that I will stick with my Fisher 1266X and my Tek Turbo. I joined a lot of forums and have asked a lot of questions and so far I only see the Nox as being a good coin and ring detector. One thing that I noticed in all of the pics shown of the finds is the absence of iron artifacts. I mean there are some but not many. I have been asking if the Nox can tell the difference between an iron nail and a iron horseshoe. (I could have said iron stirrup, iron sword, etc.) So far the answer has been no. Most say that is not a problem for them since they are not interested in the iron artifacts. That is a big problem for me since I like finding the iron artifacts but not necessarily want to dig all of the iron nails.

    • Joe as a coinshooter the opposite would be my preference but it doesn’t matter anyway. Haven’t the need nor the money.

      Again I have no doubts this detector is very good…just that we have very good detectors coming on the scene every few months and once the next one comes out it too will be the greatest thing since white bread, and as you said the Equinox doesn’t “appear” to be a good relic machine. I guess maybe I’m waiting on that earth shattering technology that sets the pastime on it’s ears and so far nada. I’m also disappointed that the manufacturers haven’t figured out the wireless thing yet.

      Loved the Fisher 1266

  9. Bob Sickler

    Something I’ve learned in the 50 years I’ve been swinging detectors is that nothing finds better coins and relics than a well researched huntsite that hasn’t been hunted before.

    When I buy a new detector, it has to offer me features I’ve not used before. My latest purchase is waterproof; it has wireless headphones and a wireless pinpointing probe that works as advertised; a well thought out simple control interface; excellent target separation via very fast processing speed; and available depth more than I’ve been used to… But again, all this and a parachute means nothing without a great location to use it.

    • “nothing finds better coins and relics than a well researched huntsite that hasn’t been hunted before…”

      And therein lies my problem. Thanks Bob.

  10. “nothing finds better coins and relics than a well researched huntsite that hasn’t been hunted before…” therein lies the answer, succinctly put, but, for some inexplicable reason, overlooked by the YOOTOOB generation thank God!

    Well said Bob.

    • Bob Sickler

      Thanks Guys… It’s just something you learn when you start to become as old as the dirt you dig in ! 🙂

  11. The Equinox fiasco has indeed, been “sticking in my craw” since one of the disgusted Minelab reps threw it out of a plane, thought twice, then sent a skydiver after it, as one of it’s characteristics (one of it’s best, as far as I am concerned) is poor resistance to falls from thousands of feet in the air.

    As you frequent one of the Facebook pages that I Admin, you will notice I had very few nice things to say about the “Nox,” as the newly anointed call it reverently. It’s mostly a small Frankenstein machine that is way behind its time technically and figuratively. When I first heard the “Nox” reference I immediately thought “What an ob-nox-ious term for an untried machine still dripping with hype.” The two models, the 600 and 800 have both been very difficult to get for the True Believers, and many have canceled…and done so angrily after paying cash, then waiting 8-9 months for nada.

    As fate would have it, I happened to be present in a large metal detector dealers showroom, here in Florida, (who shall remain nameless)and my very first encounter with a truly angry “Non Nox Fan” in action. I was standing near the checkout area when an older gentleman walked in rather stiffly with a category-9 frown fully displayed. He said, “I’m here to pick up my Minelab Equinox metal detector I ordered LAST YEAR!” The clerk looked up and said “Did we call you?” and he bellows “NO, I’m here for the Equinox and you’d better have it!!!” I put down the magazine I was thumbing thru and backed up a bit, thinking “I’m glad I don’t work here”

    An ongoing give and take at ever higher volume ensued, until the customer finally said “I want my money back and cancel the order, right now!!!” The two clerks behind the window looked at each other and one said to him “We can cancel your order, but it will take TWO WEEKS to get your money refunded.” I backed up a bit more…toward the pulse machine displays. The man yelled “You didn’t have any problem taking my money, did you?!?!?!” Then the clerk made the fatal mistake. “Well, it’s not my fault, you need to talk to the company about that.” The customer practically screamed “YOU ARE THE COMPANY!!!!!!!!!” It got so quiet you could have heard a pin drop. The customer looked at the two clerks and said, calmly “You two are shit…and so is the Equinox!” and walked out the door fuming. I looked back at the clerks and one says sadly, “We’ve had almost thirty cancellations this week…it’s not our fault Minelab won’t ship enough to us to fill orders!” From reports, this drama was repeated all over the country. I drove to a park right after, and pulled out my Nokta Impact and started to hunt. Found a silver dime..and without a “NOX” either.

    • Yeah the advance hype on this detecctor was over the top and I wonder whose idea the skydiver bit was. Couldn’t imagine someone in the marketing department presenting it to the boss.

      Jim the rush to get new models out is in the extreme and you would think the powers to be would remember the past. There’s always a glitch or problem that a little more field testing would have found but of course it’s always about money. I hope too that those who paid upfront are a little wiser.

      Thanks Jim. Hope it’s a little cooler in Florida…

      • Actually it IS cooler here in Florida, mostly because our sun-rain cycle has been restored, despite the ongoing wholesale destruction of our forests, tress, lakes and rivers. The average temp here is around 73 to 85 degrees…a few summers ago, average temp was 114 degrees!

        The “Nox” is a newbies dream…a waterproof Minelab machine for about $800 bucks. Several owners gave me the surprising skinny on their machine after they received it. First out of the box, it was discovered that a battery charger was NOT include, but one could be purchased separately from Minelab for about $40 bucks. A manual is NOT included, not even a DVD…you need to download and print it yourself. The rechargeable battery is “fixed” and not removable or replaceable by the owner…it needs to be shipped back to Minelab for replacement or servicing. The VDI screen seems to flicker and go out on the machine on a regular basis, with only audio available (like the old days!). Overall, in my mind, a spectacular fail. I have a sneaking suspicion it was Minelab’s answer to the Garrett AT-Max machine, except it was more of an embarrassed whisper than an answer. Stay cool Dick!

  12. Stephen Stewart

    I’ve been detecting for 16 years, I’ve owned several machines from different manufactures. The Equinox is the best detector I’ve owned so far. My soil is mineralized here in Eastern Tennessee
    and the “Nox”,as you guys seem to hate it called, has found coins and relics like no other detector I’ve owned hunting the same sites. I don’t really care what anyone thinks about it, call it hype or what you will, but I have confederate bullets, buttons, Union bullets and buttons, and silver coins sitting in my display case that it has found for me. It runs circles around it’s overpriced brother the ctx, and lays the smack down on the over hyped xp deus. The proof is results, when I get a machine if it performs I keep it, if it doesn’t then it moves on, I’ll be keeping the Nox for a loooong time.

    • Hi Stephen. Thanks for sharing your experience. Glad the machine is working out for you. I don’t doubt it’s a pretty decent detector, just that the hype and promotion was over the top, especially when it wasn’t even ready for general use and/or shipping.

      Happy hunting and don’t be a stranger here….

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