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Harold, I had/used both the original and then the revised Golden µMAX.

March 23, 2019 06:49AM avatar
I guess for some people, hunting in some favorable ground environments, they might have worked OK. For me, I was left unimpressed. Partly due to the ground mineral make-up, partly due to the preset Ground Balance, and therefore due to the poor performance I experienced. It was especially noticeable with the 'original' Golden µMAX version.

First I should clarify that, other than the White's XLT, I am NOT a fan of most multi-tone audio functions from different manufacturers. On the White's MXT Pro / All-Pro I either like to hunt in the Relic 2-Tone 'Iron Audio ID' or the single-tone Coin & Jewelry modes, and on their MX-7 I either use the 2-Tone or 4-Tone Discriminate modes. With the Teknetics Omega 8000 I usually use the 3-Tone for most Coin Hunting but sometimes the 4-Tone or 2-Tone modes. On my Teknetics T2+ I favor the 3 Tone or 2+ Tone modes, but in more open areas with sparse targets I'll use the deeper-seeking 'bP' or 'Boost Process' mode.

My turn-on search mode with my Nokta FORS CoRe or Relic models is the 3-Tone mode when using the smaller ±5" DD coils, but most often 2-Tone with their mid-sized 5X9½ DD coils. Only my Fisher F44 do I have the factory default modes and the selected Custom modes operating in either 4-Tone or 5-Tone function and used for typical Coin & Jewelry Hunting tasks.

The only detectors I own and use that only function with a single-tone audio are my Tesoro Bandido II µMAX and Silver Sabre µMAX's. They work well for a few reasons, and I use them quite a bit. The reasons?

They were designed to only function with a single tone.

I only use one coil on them most of the time, and while the Bandido II µMAX provides manual GB for hunting in tough site conditions, the Silver Sabre µMAX units have an internal GB trimmer that I tweaked to provide good, functional performance in the more highly mineralized ground were I live and generally search.

They are a 2-Filter, analog-based circuitry design detector that work well with a single tone. And the former models that provided a Notch-Disc. to set a 2-Tone behavior, like the Royal Sabre, Golden Sabre Plus and especially the Pantera, also usually gave acceptable performance. The Pantera had a bit of an 'edge' over the others because the operator could adjust the manual Ground Balance, and all of these modes were usually separating the audio for targets in the higher-conductivity Non-Ferrous range, such as for rejecting Pull-Tabs, or better still to provide a Tone Break for modern US Zinc Cents.

I was a Tesoro Dealer at the time so I was especially interested in any new model that featured a useful and functional design, but the 'original' Golden µMAX was a real let-down for me. I took it along with several other makes and models on a couple of travels to hunt an assortment of sites, such as ferrous and non-ferrous littered ghost towns in Oregon, Nevada and Utah, city parks and sports fields in those states as well as California and Arizona, and some beach hunting at Lake Havasu, Arizona.

I found myself grabbing other models after shorter hunts with the Golden µMAX because the supposed 4-Tone audio most often produced only 3-Tones, As a Dealer I worked with three specimens and their stock 8" Concentric coils and had unfavorable results with all of them, especially in more mineralized environments and hunting in sandy type conditions at both coastal and inland fresh-water beaches. I only got the few in and had similar complaints from the customers use and didn't want any more of them.

Then, they supposedly 'fixed-the-glitch' and brought out the 'revised' version with improved tones. I only checked out one specimen and was left equally unimpressed. I mostly hunt in very mineralized locations. I have quite a few friends who are also Tesoro fans and have been using Tesoro's since '83, '86, and many since 'the '90 through '97 period' that I sold them. Some other friends who more recently acquired a Tesoro to complement their detector outfit. Most live in various areas of Oregon, Utah, Nevada and Arizona, and none of them who tried a Golden µMAX liked either version.

I would get too many High-Tone targets falling in the 3rd tone range rather than the 4th. As I often state, I mainly get to away locations for Relic Hunting where I deal with dense iron nail infestations and other common iron junk and really appreciate a good-working 2-Tone detector to do well at classifying common iron trash with a good-working lower Iron Audio Tone, and Tesoro couldn't make that happen well, either.

Jack Gifford's best attempt was the Euro Sabre. It didn't sell well in England where it was especially designed to sell, so they put a larger-size coil with it and tried to peddle it here in the USA for the avid Relic Hunting crowd who hunt Civil War era sites or others who mainly deal with dense iron in relic type environments.

It flunked the test. The big coil didn't help it sell well, and even the 8" and 8X9 Concentric coils weren't the fix. I mainly used the 7" Concentric and now the 6" Concentric on my preferred Tesoro's and I had several Euro Saber's. I picked up two in really choice condition back in late 2014 or early 2015 They feature manual GB so I could adjust that important function for any site I searched, and I mounted both 7" Concentric and 6" Concentric coils. I had the two specimens at the same time so I could do side-by-side comparisons and see if one was a notably better performer than the other.

From working simple places like woodchip-filled tot-lots to ghost towns, homesteads, old barn areas and just about anyplace, the Iron Audio function didn't work cleanly. The MXT Pro, T2 Classic, Omega 8000 and Nokta CoRe all produced very functional, very discernible Iron Audio Tone ID performance. All out-performed the Euro Sabre when it came to audibly classifying common nails, wire iron and other ferrous junk that should easily respond with a low-tone iron audio.

The Euro Sabre struggled with some odd-shaped iron junk, with smaller-size iron, and with iron that was located at or deeper than about 3". Compared with other makes and models, I believe it was a combination of problems caused by a very modulated audio, lack of sufficient signal to process, and the circuitry design of a primarily analog circuitry design. Most models that process Iron Audio or other audio tone segments better seem to be more digitally-based detectors.

I still like the concept and really wished the Tesoro Euro Sabre would have worked well to produce just 2 properly assigned audio tones. Perhaps the same sets of issues are what made the 4-tone Golden µMAX models not work well for me and others I have conversed with, along with the added facts that they, like me, hunt in some tough ground conditions AND the fact that model lacks a manually adjustable Ground Balance control?

All I know is that they had enough problems with the first attempt it caused them to go in and make corrections to improve it and try to make it sellable, and their efforts resulted in the revised second attempt which appeared to have an even shorter life and I know it, too, had consumer complaints which might be why they didn't continue offering it. But for a few people, the Golden µMAX did work satisfactorily. It seems like they must have received a better specimen from a production run AND hunt in more favorable ground where the preset GB was functional in the Disc. mode for them in their ground mineral environment.

How many other detector manufacturers offer a 2, 3, 4 or other multi-tone models that work functionally as designed and are using an analog-based circuitry design and not using a more modern, digital circuitry design? I have several of my all-time favorite Tesoro models that work great at what they do, but Tesoro, especially for the last many, many years kept falling short and farther behind all the competition simply because they didn't have a savvy design engineer, and perhaps financial backing, to put into R&D and make products for today's new and different market.

So, for me, they never worked well. For you, the Golden µMAX seems to and that's a good thing. We all need to be comfortable and satisfied with the detectors we choose to use for different applications. I have a friend or two who chuckle at some of the models I have added to my Regular-Use Detector Team, but you know what? They do what they need to do and work for me for the applications I grab them for, and that's a good thing.


"Your EYES ... the only 100% accurate form of Discrimination!"

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Metal Detector Evaluations and Product Reviews
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Subject Author Views Posted

New Tone Golden uMax

Harold,ILL. 594 March 10, 2019 01:13PM

Harold, I had/used both the original and then the revised Golden µMAX.

Monte 397 March 23, 2019 06:49AM

Singing a new tune in 2019 -

UtahRich 398 March 22, 2019 02:42PM

Re: Singing a new tune in 2019 -

Harold,ILL. 416 March 23, 2019 08:43AM

Re: Singing a new tune in 2019 - Attachments

Harold,ILL. 369 March 23, 2019 09:16AM

Re: Singing a new tune in 2019 -

UtahRich 332 March 23, 2019 09:42AM

Re: Singing a new tune in 2019 -

jmaryt 350 March 22, 2019 09:34PM

j.t., I agree with Rich (Utah)'s post below.

Monte 415 March 23, 2019 06:28AM

Re: j.t., I agree with Rich (Utah)'s post below.

jmaryt 336 March 23, 2019 11:20AM

Would I do it again?

UtahRich 368 March 23, 2019 12:56AM

Re: Would I do it again?

jmaryt 333 March 23, 2019 11:02AM

Re: New Tone Golden uMax

GeoW 342 March 21, 2019 04:33PM

Re: New Tone Golden uMax

Harold,ILL. 306 March 21, 2019 09:01PM

Re: New Tone Golden uMax

Harold,ILL. 344 March 20, 2019 11:10AM

Re: New Tone Golden uMax

jmaryt 346 March 20, 2019 01:49PM

Re: New Tone Golden uMax

Kickindirt 453 March 10, 2019 08:11PM

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