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Metal Detecting Gear

FAQ: What is the difference between the Minelab Equinox 600 and Equinox 800?

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We get this question quite often.  Therefore it deserves an article dedicated to it.  By looking at the Minelab Equinox 600 and the Minelab Equinox 800, even the trained eye has difficulty quickly telling the difference.  Although there are a lot of similarities in these two metal detectors there are a few differences.

Similarities of the Equinox 600 and 800

Both metal detectors are waterproof up to 10 feet making them a viable option for an all terrain metal detector. 

Both the 800 and 600 offer the same adjustable sensitivity, target volume and threshold level. Both detectors have automatic and manual ground balance. Both detectors offer 50 segment notch discrimination (Ferrous: -9 to – 0 | Non-ferrous: 1 to 40).  Both have the same 5-level depth indicator, come with the same standard 11-inch double D smart coil, and both are the same size, weight, and length (2.96lbs and 56.7").

Both detectors provide 12 hours of run time with a full charge on their mutual build in rechargeable Lithium-ion battery and both can have their software updated via a USB connection when hooked to a computer with Windows or OSX.  Additionally both detectors come with the same 3 year manufacturers warranty.

Difference Between Equinox 600 and 800

Now for the differences between the Equinox 600 versus the Equinox 800.

The Equinox 600 has three detection modes (Park, Beach, and Field).  The Equinox 800 has four (Park, Beach, Field, and Gold).  Next, the Equinox 600 has 6 custom search profiles and the Equinox 800 has eight (2 per detection modes each).  

Both detectors use Multi-IQ technology.  This means they are simultaneously use multiple frequencies.The Equinox 600 offers a choice of 3 single frequencies (5,10, and 15kHz) and the Equinox 800 offers the choice of 5 single frequencies (5,10,15,20 and 40kHz) . Both detectors are capable of covering a much broader range of targets when operating any one single frequency can, however, if excessive ground noise is present in a particular detecting location, switching into a single frequency can help to eliminate this. Low frequencies typically give more depth on large targets than high frequencies, which are usually more sensitive to small targets. With the Equinox detectors you are operating across the full spectrum of frequencies maximizing both depth and accuracy in determining what a target may be.

Both metal detectors have noise cancel but the Equinox 600 is automatic and the Equinox 800 has both auto and manual (some people don't want to cancel noise).  On the Equinox 600 the threshold pitch is fixed whereas on the Equinox 800 it is adjustable.  This allows you to hear that "hum" in the background if you so desire.

Both detectors have a back-lit LCD screen but with the 600, it is either on or off.  With the Equinox 800 it has four options (low, medium, high, and off). Both detectors offer ground balance, however the Equinox 800 has manual and auto.  The Equinox 600 has only automatic ground balance.

The Equinox 600 comes with a set of wired 3.5mm (1/8") headphones (non waterproof).  The Equinox 800 comes with Bluetooth and aptX™ Low Latency headphones (non waterproof).  The Equinox 600 however does have Bluetooth technology, you just have to buy the WM 08 wireless module and headphones separately.

Speaking of audio, both offer different target tones (1, 2, 5, 50) and the Equinox 600 offers tone break, pitch, and volume but only for ferrous metals whereas the Equinox 800 offers it for both ferrous and non-ferrous metals. 

Now for the big difference.  The Equinox 600 metal detector carries a price tag of $649 and the Equinox 800 is priced at $899.  As a detectorist you have to decide if the differences are worth an additional $250.  In my opinion they certainly are.

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