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Is anyone other than me using a Vanquish?

March 21, 2020 06:19PM avatar
If so, which model(s) in the series do you have?

I bought the Vanquish 540 Pro Pack because that model offered the better features, plus the two versatile-size search coils. Since it doesn't have a Ground Balance feature I anticipated it would have a glitch, similar to one the Equinox has, and by golly, I was right. It took me 10-15 minutes to assemble the detector and isolate the design error. Once I confirmed that weakness in design, I set out to determine any strengths the 540 might have, and there were several.

The first thing was that I really liked the two search coils. The 5X8 DD makes the 540 a really good model to have along on my everyday travels, joined by a Nokta / Makro Impact w/7" Concentric and a Tesoro Silver Sabre microMAX w/6" Concentric. I hunted the week with the 5X8 DD most of the time, as I learned the pros and cons of the different factory default modes, then selected the one I liked, adjusted the Disc. segments I wanted to accept, then 'Saved' that mode function to the 'Custom' mode slot.

On the weekend I also worked a few places using the larger 9X12 DD coil, used the different modes, and settled on the one I felt gave me the better performance with that coil and where I'd use it. I liked the solid build quality of each coil and their performance afield, with the 9X12 being one of only two larger-size search coils that I will use. I prefer smaller to mid-size coils for most of my hunting, and the 5X8 DD makes a really good mid-size coil for my needs.

After the weekend I had the 540 boxed and shipped it off to Minelab USA on Monday, one week after I received it. I sent a 5-page explanation of why I wanted it checked out and pointed out the performance design issues for the different modes. The 'issues', or 'quirks' as I call them, are related to an errant Ground Balance that is apparent in the 'Horseshoe'-activated All Metal Accept function. It was either going to be something 'fixable' with an internal trimmer, or multiple-trimmer adjustment ... OR ... it was something done in software and most likely not something the service technician could repair.

Still, for the bulk of my detecting, I can easily work around the 'glitch' by using my preferred Disc. setting of accepting ALL of the Disc. segments except the first two. I had a few other 'problems' arise at that point which were more easily solvable. One 'problem' was that I really liked the 540's in-the-field performance with the 5X8 DD for many applications, and the ability to work in some places with a lot of crown-type bottle caps and handle the conditions very well.

The second 'problem' was that I seldom use a larger size, or even 'standard' size, coil on most detectors due to the nose-heavy weight and poor balance of the outfit. But the 9X12 coil is much lighter than I thought it might be, and has a properly-positioned rod-mount point. Combined with the very well designed Vanquish rod and grip design, it is one of the more comfortable experiences I have had with a bigger coil in a few decades .... plus it worked very well in more open areas for coverage and depth.

Then there was a third 'problem' and that is that I do not enjoy making search coil changes afield. Too much down-time and always a chance to loose a washer or bolt (or nut with other makes and models). So, after sending my 540 to MInelab USA for possible service, and considering my three 'problems' (I like the 5X8 and I like the 9X12 but I don't like doing coil-changes) I did the only logical think I could to remedy the issue ... I ordered another brand new Vanquish 540 Pro Pack. smiling smiley

When that one arrived I put the new 5X8 DD coil in a small 'Vanquish'-labeled MTM ammunition box with the new set of headphones, battery charger and charging cable to tote along. Then I mounted the 9X12 DD, confirmed that this 2nd brand new model had the same 'glitch' in design as the first so it wasn't a unique thing, then I selected the Relic mode and my desired Disc. settings of all but the first two, and 'Saved' that to the 'Custom' slot on that device. Now I have two 540's with each of the coil sizes I like for it, both set-up and ready-to-grab for whatever type site I set out to hunt.

Is the Vanquish Multi-frequency Multi-IQ the same as the Equinox Multi-IQ? NO, it isn't. It lacks the Automated (pump-the-coil) Ground Balance and Manual Ground Balance. That, to me, is the primary difference in design and performance ability.

Does the Vanquish offer the same adjustability of the top-model Equinox 800? NO, it lacks several adjustment functions .... however, that is just fine with me. By design, and for the majority of the sites people are going to hunt, the Vanquish 540 performs very well, and having a High Iron Bias or Low Iron Bias setting is ample enough for where I've hunted The different modes provide a couple of 'separation' or 'recovery-speed' options, too.

Does the Vanquish provide anything 'better' than the Equinox? YES, it does. The physical package design of the Vanquish is, by far, a better balanced, better feeling, and more stable design. Quite comfortable, and adjustable for comfort, and no need to buy different rods or add any counter-weights. A very well thought-out design with the Vanquish.

What, if anything, do the Vanquish and Equinox have in common? They share the same numeric VDI read-out for target identification, and that's good. And they share the same ML-80 wireless headphones that come standard in the 540 Pro Pack, and that's better-than-good! They are very comfortable and have a good-sounding audio response that is clear and loud-enough. Some of the best wireless headphones I've used.

I have discussed the Vanquish models with a few people on other Forums, those who also bought the 540 as well as some who spent less just to have a 'back-up' or a detector for their kids or grandkids.

The Vanquish 540 did help me makes a few decisions to thin out some of the excess detectors I had, and that was a good thing. There's no perfect detector so I have been adjusting my personal Detector Outfit to have some of the best for different applications I want or need them for, and the 540 w/5X8 DD is one of my versatile two detectors. It joins my Impact w/7" Concentric as being a really good 'Cross-Over' unit that I can use for Urban Coin Hunting as well as many places when Relic Hunting old, out-of-the-way sites.

These two set-ups are also my 'Scouting Units' that can be grabbed to scout some suspected locations for any sign of prior human activity. Comfortable, too, for hunting side-hills and fringe areas (aka 'Scouting') around old townsites, etc. for some remote dwelling, or other structure and/or active use.

Anyway, I like this newer model and look forward to many hunts this year where it will have the opportunity to find stuff, if I do my part and work the coil over some targets. Would like to know who else has one or at least tried one out. For roughly half the cost of a new Eq-800 you sure get a lot with this model for the $$$.


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

Stinkwater Wells Trading Post
Metal Detector Evaluations and Product Reviews
I'm now located in Clyde, Texas
monte@ahrps.org ... or ... monte@stinkwaterwells.com
Detector Outfit: A selection of my favorite makes and models, with the best coils mounted, for the tasks I'll take on.
Pinpointers: Pulse-Dive & ProPointer AT .. Headphones: 'Hornet' & 'Wasp' .. MS-3 Z-Lynk .. N/M Green edition
*** All working well today to make memories for tomorrow. ***
Subject Author Views Posted

Is anyone other than me using a Vanquish?

Monte 383 March 21, 2020 06:19PM

Re: Is anyone other than me using a Vanquish?

Jamie 321 March 21, 2020 08:15PM

Your experiences with the V-340 are also interesting.

Monte 290 March 22, 2020 10:00AM

Re: Your experiences with the V-340 are also interesting.

Jamie 256 April 03, 2020 06:59PM

Re: Your experiences with the V-340 are also interesting.

Monte 228 April 04, 2020 12:32AM

Re: Is anyone other than me using a Vanquish?

diggindeep 296 March 21, 2020 07:47PM

Your experiences with the V-540 are interesting.

Monte 316 March 22, 2020 02:15AM

Re: Your experiences with the V-540 are interesting.

diggindeep 282 March 22, 2020 01:21PM

Looking forward to see what you've come up with thumbs up N/T

UtahRich 251 March 22, 2020 02:32PM

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