For those of you not familiar with the Treasure Baron series of detectors from Discovery Electronics Inc., they are the first true modular metal detectors. By this I mean, if a person is uncertain of what type of detector they want, they can purchase a basic turn on and go detector that has both discrimination and all metal modes.
Then, if at some point they want to change their detector, they can simply purchase one of several modules that insert into the control housing that will transform the basic detector into a significantly different unit. In essence one can create the detector of their choice.
With the new Millennium Baron, Discovery Electronics Inc., has added their sophisticated SST (Smart Scan Technology) microprocessor controlled Coin Trax ID module to the basic unit and then gone one step farther. Discovery has introduced a new lightweight Control housing and a new 3-piece breakdown rod. Altogether, this combination is a truly versatile metal detector designed for both the novice and the serious treasure hunter.
This new Millennium Baron is much more comfortable to use over extended periods of time than its predecessor. In a nutshell, this new instrument is 50 percent lighter and breaks down to a 30 percent smaller instrument that is designed for the serious treasure hunter on the go.
With the addition of the Coin Trax ID module, the Baron Millennium is a full featured detector. By this I mean this detector has almost all the lights, bells, and whistles found on top line machines. To make the detector even more versatile, an operator can adjust almost every feature of the detector, and almost all of these adjustments are computer controlled for precision.
The basic adjustments and features provided by the Coin Trax ID module include the following: True automatic ground tracking, All Metal Ground Tracking Speed control, Ground Tracking offset, Adjustable Visual Target ID including Notch Discrimination, five discrimination preset modes, All Metal Sensitivity control, Motion Discrimination sensitivity control, All Metal Autotune speed control, Turbo Ground Balance, and others.
The beauty of the Millennium Baron is, as complex as it may be, it is also a simple true, turn on and go, type of detector. A new owner can ignore all the adjustments, just turn the instrument on and begin hunting. The presets built in allow for excellent depth and effective discrimination and target ID.
The new lightweight control housing is a pleasing jet black in color that enhances the appearance of this machine. The detector comes equipped with a standard 8 inch concentric search coil, but accepts the optional 5 and one-half inch concentric and 9 inch elliptical wide-scan coils. Like the previous models, this new detector is powered by 8 AA batteries (not included).
Testing And Evaluation
My first reaction to the new lighter weight detector was great. The Treasure Baron series of detectors have always been excellent performers. However, they have always been heavier than most, making them somewhat more tiring to use for long periods of time. The new control box makes all the difference in the world.
My initial testing began at my home where I ran the detector through a series of tests I normally give all detectors. This initial testing includes evaluating the detectors response to the ground as well as its ability to detect some targets buried at predetermined depths.
One thing I have found is that over the years I have been giving advice about detectors, the ground balance adjustment has been the most difficult for me to explain, and it seems to be the most difficult for new owners to fully master. With the Millennium Baron this problem is completely solved.
With the Millennium, this process was as simple as turning the detector on and moving the search coil for a few seconds. In almost no time the detector was perfectly balanced. Because of its simplicity and accuracy, I believe this true automatic ground-tracking feature is worth its weight in gold.
Next, it was time to test the depth capabilities of the detector. With the factory preset settings, I was able to find both of my deeper test targets, a dime buried at 6 and one half inches and a penny buried at 5 inches. I found this quite impressive for such a quiet detector.
The target ID indications on the deepest targets were respectably accurate. The dime registered a dime about half the time on the 10 LED indicator. Other times it read higher, which is quite normal because of the dimes depth. The penny did about the same thing except it was accurate about 80 percent of the time. On most other shallower targets, the ID indications were extremely accurate.
Next I adjusted the notch settings, which is part of the Coin Trax module, and the discrimination level knob that is part of the basic Baron. By turning the manual discrimination control one way or the other, I was able to have a notched out target give no response, or I could have the notched targets respond with a low tone. I mentioned this little feature because I didnt notice it in the manuals and because it does add another level of versatility to the detector.
One weak feature of the Millennium Baron is the fact that when the power is turned off, all settings made by the operator return to the factory preset values. In cases this can be an inconvenience if a person is turning the detector on and off frequently and wants to run the detector at other than preset settings.
However, it also can be an asset to a new user. If one gets confused or makes an adjustment they do not want, they can simply turn the detector off, wait a couple of seconds and turn the detector back on and have everything reset to normal.
Additional testing of most of the adjustments available took only a few seconds to do. Threshold adjustments were as simple as tapping either the left or right pointing arrows to decrease or increase the threshold. Some of the features required that I first select the feature using the MENU button, move the red LED to the appropriate selection, pressing ENTER, making my adjustments, and pressing ENTER again.
I will say that initial adjusting of this detector will probably be somewhat confusing for a new operator to master at first. This is partially true because of all the controls and adjustments that can be made. Once a person gains familiarity with the detector, and has adjusted some of the settings, such as the notch, and sensitivity a couple of times, it should become second nature.
In The Field
While coin hunting, I never adjusted the ground tracking system. However, I did take this detector on one outing to hunt for gold nuggets. At that site, I let the tracking system adjust itself over some of the more severe hotrocks, and then turned the tracking off. The detector was then set to minimize signals from those rocks that usually respond with a strong negative signal. Hunting for gold was done in the All Metal Mode
This same procedure would also be my recommended procedure when hunting for meteorites since the automatic ground tracking will try to adjust to give minimum response to many types of meteorites.
Also, at sites such as around old foundations where there are a lot of old cans or other large pieces of metal, I would also recommend turning the ground tracking off, especially if the detector seems to be acting strangely.
The reason for turning the ground tracking off is, like all other true ground tracking detectors I have used, this detector will adjust the ground tracking somewhat when over iron objects, which can make the detector respond strangely and interfere somewhat with the accuracy of both the discrimination and all metal modes.
I didnt find any gold, but did recover several small pieces of iron and small pieces of lead including some coming from very respectable depths. All were done using the preset settings of the detector and using the All Metal Mode. Even at the preset settings, the detector would give a nice response to a 1 to 2 grain gold nugget.
One point I would like to mention is, this detector has an all metal mode sensitivity range that can be too great for most locations when adjusted to or near the maximum setting. Usually, increasing the sensitivity one notch is more than sufficient. On my coin hunting trips, I primarily left the detector at the factory preset settings and relied on the accurate target ID feature to let me know what to expect. Testing was done in a couple of old yards, an old foundation site, and a couple of parks.
The results of my outings produce a large number of new coins, several keys, one silver dime, several wheatbacks, and several non-iron objects. None of the finds were spectacular, but all were definitely keepers. Targets were recovered from depths ranging from near surface to about 9 inches. In most cases, the ID feature registered accurately, and the depth indication was very accurate.
Like the previous Treasure Baron models, the sensitivity, target ID accuracy, and automatic ground tracking are some of the best in the industry. Now, with the new control housing and breakdown shaft, this is definitely a more comfortable and versatile detector.
Whether a person just wants a turn on and go type target ID detector, or is looking for a very versatile detector that works very well for almost all aspects of treasure hunting, the new Millennium Baron will fit the needs, and, as such, is an easy detector to recommend.
One can get more information about this new detector or the Treasure Baron series by contacting: Discovery Electronics Inc., 1415 Poplar Street, Sweet Home OR 97386, Phone 1-541-367-2585, or Fax 1-541-367-6690.