Nokta Makro The Legend – An Equinox beater?

  • Time to read: 8 min.

Nokta detectors

Nokta detectors as a company started their journey in 2003 with a goal to produce great metal detectors at an affordable price point.

Nokta thrive on technology and want to be the vanguard of innovation for their customers. Attention to detail is paramount for them but they also claim to see the bigger picture.

Described as an ambitious but humble company, they strive for perfection but accept they are human and make mistakes as well. When they do, they acknowledge their mistakes and make up for them.

They most definately don’t stand still and listen to their customers.

Nokta Engineering introduced themselves to the world as an independent manufacturer of metal detectors and are based in Istanbul, Turkey.

Obsessed with electromagnetism, electronics, electro mechanics and physics, Nokta brought them all together to develop and manufacture detectors and make a name in the global arena. 

In a saturated market, it sounds hard but they succeeded. Not only that, but they became a strong global brand and Nokta Makro Detectors export to more than 100 countries across six continents.

Nokta Makro The Legend

When Nokta Makro Metal Detectors introduced their Legend metal detector to the market, it was blatently obvious from their marketing who they were targeting.

Minelab had previously pioneered multi frequency VLF technology called “Multi-IQ” and had launched it in their Equinox 600 and 800 series of detectors. (Also now in their Vanquish range)

The Nokta Makro Legend

From a business point of view, you would target the best selling multi frequency detector.

So, they went after the Minelab Equinox market share and targeted the best selling detector.

Since then, and very interestingly I might add was the introduction of the Minelab Vanquish range.

Was the Vanquish concept a result to compete with the newcomer for Nokta?…..I think it was.

Well, the Minelab Equinox 600 and 800 still perform incredibly but they’ve been out for quite some time.

Long enough for someone to match it and better it at a lower price. That was their goal. We’ll look at a side by side comparison between the Nokta Makro Legend vs Equinox 800.

Nokta Makro Legend Price

Looking at the direct comparisons between the Legend and Equinox series is quite interesting. Give or take a few quid, the base pack Legend comes in around £679. (at the time of writing this article!)

The Minelab Equinox 600 comes in around £699 and the Equinox 800 (which is a detector I own!) comes in around £949. (again, at the time of writing this article)

So, you can see the price difference between the Legend and the 800!

Where things start to get really interesting is when you start comparing the Legend price to the Minelab Vanquish range!

Minelab Equinox 800
The Minelab Equinox

The Vanquish range consists of the entry level 340, then the 440 and finally the 540.

Now, it’s important to remember here that the Vanquish range all contain the same fantastic Multi-IQ multi frequency technology.

The Multi-IQ technology as the Equinox 800. (Note: The 600 uses 3 frequencies, not 5.)

The functionality and adjustability increase through the range of course but the Vanquish 340 can be had for around £230 which looking at the technology inside it is unbelieveable.

The 440 can be had for around £299 and the 540 for around £399. Now….here is the dilemma. Compared to the Equinox 800, the Legend looks like a bargain.

However, compared to the Vanquish 540, the 540 looks like an even bigger bargain, especially with the full Multi-IQ technology!

Minelab Vanquish 540
The Minelab Vanquish 540

So, which one to choose? We’ll continue with the Nokta Makro Legend vs Equinox 800 comparison but here are my recommendations.

If your budget is the key thing here, I would definately go for the Vanquish 540. Pound for pound, it’s the best in its class.

If your budget is really tight, look at the 340 or 440 models. These are still crammed with the same amazing technology for their price points.

You’ll miss very little with them and they can be a “switch on and go” machine. You can find a Minelab Vanquish on Amazon here.

The Equinox 800 and Legend are very evenly matched from a technology point of view which we’ll cover now but the Legend is approximately £270 cheaper. Feedback from Legend users is really good too!

You can find a Nokta Makro Legend on Amazon here.

Nokta Makro Legend vs Equinox 800

Nokta Makro Legend Coils

Both the Legend and the Equinox 800 ship with 11 inch DD type coils which makes them evenly matched. This size and type of coil are perfect for all round performance.

Nokta Makro Legend 6 inch coil

They perform at depth and also provide great target separation in target busy or mineralised ground conditions.

Both Nokta and Minelab also provide additional coils depending on your detecting needs or environment.

Smaller coils help on very busy, target infested, mineralised ground or stubble fields as they have a smaller footprint.

Larger coils gain greater depth and ground coverage on more quiet fields.

You can read more about metal detector coil types in my article here.

Minelab offer a 6 inch DD coil and a larger 15 inch DD coil for the Equinox. Nokta offer a 6 inch DD coil and a slightly larger 13.5 inch DD.

Nokta Makro Multi Frequency

Multi frequency
Multi frequency technology

Both the Minelab Equinox 800 and the Nokta Makro Legend boast multi frequency technology.

Both can use 5 VLF frequencies simultaneously and also be switched to use a single frequency if necessary.

The only difference is the base frequency on the Legend operates at 4 KHz and the Equinox 800 operates at 5 Khz.

This difference is negligable and it won’t make a difference. This makes both machines even matched again. (In fact, the latest Equinox software update adds an extra 4 KHz frequency!)

Nokta Makro Search Modes

Both machines suspiciously use 4 search modes which consist of Park, Field, Beach and Gold field. In reality, the Gold field will never get used…unless you’re in the Australian outback nugget hunting!

Park is used for the more trashy areas and although sometimes nice to use, is catered more towards the US detectorists that hunt around play areas for modern coins.

In the UK, more often than not, the Field and Beach modes will be most often used. The Legend offers 2 sub modes within Field and Beach. The Equinox offers 2 sub modes in every main mode.

What this means is that you can choose either Field 1, Beach 1 or Field 2 , Beach 2. The difference is subtle but it changes the search algorhythm weighting slightly on both machines.

One option will lean being more sensitive to low conductors and the other option will lean towards being more sensitive to higher conductors. Don’t worry though, the differences are marginal.

Nokta Makro Legend Weight

Both machines are a whisker apart in the weight department. Whilst in general use, no differences will be felt.

Nokta Makro Ferrous Check

This feature on the Legend is a nice feature but in reality is a copy of the Equinox “Iron Bias” function. The Legend will show it in graphical form which is great, whereas the Equinox will show it audio form.

In simplistic terms, some iron targets depending on their shape, size and orientation in the ground will give off various tones.

These are ferrous and non ferrous tones. (Non ferrous are the ones you want!)

Both machines can carry out some complicated maths to filter through returned data from the frequencies.

This gives you a better idea of the target type. The Legend will show it on the screen and the Equinox will alter what you hear.

It’s good but not always correct so try to train your ears and dig everything at first in case you miss that good target.

Nokta Makro Legend Software Update

Both the Legend and Equinox can have their software updated via a cable and a computer. It’s a credit to both companies that continual research and development improves their performance.

They listen to feedback from users and improve the software from time to time which is true for both machines. Early versions most always get a knock from users but are soon improved.

The latest software versions for both machines are currently making them perform great.

Nokta Makro Legend Target ID

The target ID on the Legend consists of a Ferrous range of 1 to 10 and a non ferrous range of 11 to 60. Continual use will get you used to where certain targets come in on the scale.

The Equinox’s ferrous range is -9 to 0 and non ferrous range of 1 to 40. Both have the ability to be adjusted and have certain parts “notched” out.

Ultimate Tactical Packs!

Carry everything you’ll need for a detecting day like a First Aid kit, detector spares, finds boxes, batteries, snacks and drinks to rehydrate.

Never forget anything again with a belt pack!

Nokta Makro Legend Connectivity

The Legend offers connectivity to headphones via a Bluetooth or an “AptX” connection. The Equinox also has this but in addition offers something called “Wi-Stream”.

Wireless connectivity speeds differ depending on which technology you use. Standard Bluetooth will be the slowest. Bluetooth is handy because it means you can use headphones you might already have.

Depending on the use, listening to music is fine but sometimes when detecting, a lag between the transmission and receiving could, in extreme cases cause you difficulty locating a target.

AptX and Wi-Stream technologies offer much faster connection speeds with super low latency. (Signal lag) You can read more about wireless headphone technology in my article here.

Nokta Makro Legend Manual

The user manual for the Legend is a great place to really drill down and find out more about its functionality and adjustability.

You can find the Nokta Makro Legend user manual here.

Nokta Makro Legend Field Test

Feedback from Nokta Makro Legend users is exceptional and more people are now getting them. My detecting partner has a Legend and matches my target signals all of the time.

There really is not much that separates my Equinox 800 and his Nokta Makro Legend. I’ve included here a video by a quality detectorist called Sid from Englands History.

Sid loves his Legend and it’s a good watch!

Final thoughts!

So, the bottom line is, if you’re looking to start detecting and want a detector that you won’t have to upgrade for a long time or are looking to break into multi frequency, what do you go for?

Why note read my article on how to find a metal detecting club near you or if you want your own land, how to find a farmer who allows metal detecting here.

As we’ve talked about previously, budget can be a major factor. If it is, I would absolutely look at the Minelab Vanquish range. It has exactly the same powerful Multi-IQ engine as the Equinox 800.

I’ve had my Equinox 800 for some time now and the Vanquish wasn’t available at the time. Given the choice today, I think I would of saved some money and gone for a Vanquish.

Find the lowest priced Minelab Vanquish on Amazon here.

As a choice between the Legend and the Equinox 800?… my mind there is nothing in it, just nearly a £300 saving with the Legend.

When I bought my Equinox 800, there were no other multi frequency machines available. Given the choice again today, I feel I’d lean towards the Legend even though I love my Equinox 800.

Both machines will perform better than any other single frequency machine prior to the technology being available, both on land and on wet or dry salty sand.

Find the lowest priced Nokta Makro Legend on Amazon here and also the lowest priced Minelab Equinox 800 on Amazon here.

I hope this article has sparked your enthusiasm into what multi frequency technology can do in making previously hunted out land come to life again.

As always, take care and happy hunting!

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