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Joined: 16 November 2018
Posts: 9
10 March 2019 05:52 pm

Hi you guys,
At 66 and retired I've just bought my very first detector, a CTX3030. (I can't shoot and hunt as much as I used to, so I have a new hobby) It's been a steep learning curve for an old fart but its starting to come together, slowly. My main interest is parks etc. and occasionally getting to the beach.
I'm still working out how the Co and Fe Id number placement on the Pattern actually means something but the one thing I haven't quite got yet is how do you work out where the Tone ID profile and Pitch sections are placed and why?
I've buried some pre-decimal and decimal coins in my yard from 2" to 8" deep and some with rusty nails etc. to learn what things sound like and id. numbers they display.

I live in Toowoomba and it seems the soil here is quite mineralised as it's very crumbly and red and sticks to a magnet. ( Does that mean it's mineralised?)
Any help with some info. would be great.

How does Response, Recovery and Target Separation work together? Does one effect the other? Or do they work without effecting the other?
Being an old mechanic I want to understand how and why things work as this will help me learn more about detecting.

I've read the manual and Andy Sabisch's book a number of times but still would appreciate some practical help with modification to patterns and understand the reason for the modifications. Do any of you guys live around Toowoomba?

Cheers Bob.
PS I've never written on a forum or done a post before at all and I just realised this is on the Member Meet ups and not sure how to get to the right column!!!

Last edited by Mackoutback (10 March 2019 06:00 pm)


From: Central Coast, NSW
Joined: 29 April 2013
Posts: 13,802
10 March 2019 06:19 pm

G'day Mack and welcome to the forum. To be honest I really think as a beginner on the CTX the stock standard programs are very good, the way I learnt to use the CTX was just with the stock programs and then after a while started changing a few settings such as the target separation settings and then enabling say the fast setting in trashy environments or enabling saltwater on the beach..

90% of the time I just use the standard coin setting for parks and on beaches just use the standard beach setting. I turn on the saltwater setting if I start getting false signals on the wet sand for instance. I also nearly always use the high trash target separation on beaches or parks with the fast setting enabled also. In saying this the ground I usually detect is quite benign, seeing you have mentioned that you are detecting quite mineralised ground then maybe changing to groung coin target separation could be an option worth investigating..

I pretty much always use auto sensitivity too as the detector will work out it's optimum gain for the ground it's running over. I never need to ground balance in the spots I detect but maybe you'll need to do that also in the iron rich ground you're hunting.

Factory reset is your friend too when making major setting adjustments, sometimes it's good to do one just to get back to standard before changing things again.

You'll get plenty of good info here and this is just basic stuff I've mentioned but it will hopefully help. There are a lot of good operators here and hopefully others will offer more info.

I've been using the CTX quite a while and can get into some complicated settings and editing of discrimination patterns but start of basic mate and work your way up to the more advanced stuff. The CTX is not difficult to use but can be confusing at first.

Combined target tones were my favourite for quite a long time too when I first started with it, ujust listen for the tones and you'll get used to what the numbers are telling you after a bit of practice.

Hope that helps a bit.

Minelab GPX 5000, SDC2300, CTX3030, Equinox 800, patience, lot's of patience.

1 user likes this post: Mackoutback


From: Newcastle, NSW
Joined: 04 June 2014
Posts: 4,441
10 March 2019 09:16 pm

Gday Mack, welcome to the forum.
I did get your email, as it was in my spam folder , i wasnt sure if it was legit.
Sorry about that
Im pretty much the same as Heatho
I hunt mostly in the standard coin patern, i use 4 tones
You can adjust the pitch so that each of the 4 tones are noticeably / progressively different
Each coin(for example) will have a different id number, you can shift the pitch column to include the range of id numbers you want in it
That way you can tell by the tone what group of items you have detected then in time looking at the numbers on the screen you will have a pretty fair idea exactly what the item within the group is under your coil.
I also have a custom patern (like most people do) specifically for $1 & $2 coins.
The tatget seperation (ground coin? Is what i generaly use) i dont think makes any difference to detecting it just displays differently on the screen... I THINK.
I generally use auto , but will increase or decrease the sensitivity depending on conditions
Hope this helps , ive read it back to myself a couple of times and think it makes sense.
Have a play with the settings (you cant break anything) if you think youve over done it , do the factory reset and start again
When you are playing around ... do it outside the house , you will get too much interference inside

1 user likes this post: Mackoutback


Joined: 15 October 2016
Posts: 141
10 March 2019 10:11 pm

The soil in and around Toowoomba is a shocker and plays havoc with all detectors, even the mighty FBS/FBS2. Depth is the main casualty (expect to lose about 70%), and TIDs go out the window. The upside to this is that most detectorists give up and look for somewhere easier to detect. Toowoomba is a target rich environment, so if you can hang in there and persevere, follow the above advice, and do lots of target testing, you’ll do well.

2 users like this post: Mackoutback, Trash


Joined: 16 November 2018
Posts: 9
14 March 2019 12:19 pm

Thanks Guys,

Will continue using suggestions and comments, have half a jam jar of coins from parks in Toowoomba and Brissy, my grandson is hooked after finding a couple of
2 cent pieces in his backyard and a 5" rail spike in my driveway.

3 users like this post: Heatho, Sandta, AngerManagement


Repairs + X-pointers
From: 4030, QLD
Joined: 31 August 2014
Posts: 1,135
Repairs + X-pointers
15 March 2019 12:13 am

Have a chat to David (from the Open Range) and he may be able to put you into contact with Simon ( Brisbane Metal Detecting Club member) as he is local and uses his CTX out that way a fair bit if I recall.

And remember every setting impacts on every thing... Some more than others.

But the biggest problem is YOU and trying to run before you can crawl...

Stick with the standard profiles and practice and practice on known targets in you yard etc... Then after you get good at calling a target and or depth... Change a setting and get to know the impact.

PS. If you get out of Toowoomba, lots of settings that may suit your area will be useless in another area. But if you understand teh basics... Easy to work out what to change.

OH. And get XChange2 installed - much easier to make audio changes and to test.

Best find - The Wife # Equipment - X-Pointer x 4, Nokta Fors Gold Plus, Excalibur II, CTX3030 and a Minore III with custom wood - and lots of other stuff

2 users like this post: Mackoutback, ctxkid


Joined: 16 November 2018
Posts: 9
15 March 2019 12:33 pm

Thanks AM,
Will check out the contact at The Open Range

1 user likes this post: AngerManagement