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Rank 7: Minelab Vanquish Series

Overall Rating

Overall Rating: 85.2/100

Capability Rating: 49.4/60

Minelab Vanquish Resources

1.) Purchase This Detector 
2.) Target ID Bible Video (Soon)
3.) Target ID PDF (Soon)
4.) Best Settings (Soon)
5.) Merrill's Vanquish Playlist

Sand Texture

Merrill's Thoughts

Equinox light. In other words, a stripped down version of the Minelab Equinox. Albeit one with a higher relative value than the Equinox. Capable, but anyone who claims that the Vanquish can outperform an Equinox is wrong. There are three versions of this detector and I am mostly speaking about the 540 because I own that. Minelab has brought the benefits of simultaneous multi frequency at 3 affordable price points but each version gets more stripped down.

Depth: You will get the majority of the deep targets that an Equinox finds but not all. I found it more difficult to identify and lock in on deep signals "in traffic", meaning that the lack of spacing a trashy park throws at you can and will affect what you dig. 

Separation: What the Vanquish lacks is the special separation sauce that the Equinox has.. It feels like there is a slower and more clunky response in ground when used in an area with a high volume of targets. 

Sound Inference: With practice, you can hear size and shape of targets. The Vanquish is capable of getting the smaller targets that the Nox pulls and you get a short response when you swing over something tiny and a full response when you swing over a large target. Both cases listed in this section are relative to the depth of the target.


Target ID Inference: There is something slightly off with the target ID of the Equinox, and it is even more prevalent in the Vanquish. You don't buy this machine for a perfect target ID though. And I have tested many machines Target ID responses to various objects, what I have learned is that coins (especially pennies) minted the same year in the same condition at the same mint can have slightly different Target ID's. I would consider the target ID extremely "workable" and the audio that you get can help a user infer more about targets.

Ergonomics: The ergonomics are excellent. It is light enough to swing for hours

Build Durability: It comes with a telescopic shaft. BETTER than the Equinox. The battery compartment is pop off to easily install batteries. It is not a detector that was built to be submerged. You have to make sure that the cover is put on correctly but I actually like that it could take AA batteries (or rechargeable AA batteries). Its always possible to run out of battery during a hunt and you can pack some extra batteries just in case. Its a great failsafe. I took a point off because it is not completely water proof but it more than made up for that in the value department.

Battery Life: This is going to sound contradictory to what I wrote about the utility of having an open battery pack above, but the rechargeable Minelab batteries don't give the same use duration as other options on the market. Deus 2 has 27 hours of run time (although at a much higher price). 

Swag (Add On's): There are additional coils but there is less of a market for Vanquish add ons.

Pinpoint: The pinpoint is very Equinox like. It gives the user clues about the shape of the target.  Deep non ferrous items have a more localized pinpoint than deep ferrous items. 

Navigation: So easy. Everything is stripped down but you have buttons for volume, buttons for sensitivity. You have to hold down the iron button to get to iron bias. Fair enough. Iron volume can be adjusted after a computer update.

Handles EMI: The noise cancel happens when you turn on the detector. It is hit or miss but I have had more good days than bad ones with EMI on the Vanquish.

Utility In Water: This detector box cannot be submerged in water which is a limit. The coil can but I don't consider that worth the risk with better options at hand. It is a very capable beach detector in the wet sand and the dry sand. Just know it has limits in the water.

Saltwater Beach: I have had some very good days with the Minelab Vanquish 540 on the beach. It is capable and the best value for a saltwater capable detector.

Trashy Park: Somewhat overmatched in a trashy park where you need separation but the V8 coil helps a bit. 

Handles Iron: Ive taken it to sites with a lot of iron and I almost threw the darn thing, Iron tricks the user in to thinking its a good signal if he/she is swinging over the edge of the iron. Interestingly when the sensitivity was down it was a more manageable detector. There are better options out there for high iron settings.

Relative Value: The Vanquish is an unbelievable value for the price.  The 340 makes simultaneous multi frequency  technology available at less than 200 dollars. Personally I prefer the 540 at $379. If you think about it, one gold ring can get you a free metal detector.


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