Starting out - what equipment

I’m looking for something suitable for beaches/mudflat, tracks, even my backyard. (I live in an urban area, but I manage to escape every now and again.) I’ve got a max of $300 to spend. What could I get for that / would it be worth it / who should I deal with? I’ve done due diligence in “Google”, but that someone can get themselves in the top search result rankings doesn’t cut a lot of ice with me . . .

I would be patient and save your money for something that’s actually worthwhile. $300 wont even get you a reasonable second hand detector.
If l was you l would aim for a second hand Minelab equinox.
If you were lucky you could possibly pick up a late 1970s early 1980s big old transistor detector - Whites 6000 or Garrett Deepseeker. They are actually good detectors for coins and so on. I filled a couple of two gallon clay crocks with coins, jewellery (junk mostly but a bit of good stuff, gold and silver rings) keys, pendants etc with a Garrett Deepseeker which l still have. I asl have access to an as new Whites 6000 BUT they are pretty heavy.
Equinox rules, Fisher Goldbug is also good and a second hand one would be cheaper than a second hand Equinox.

Don’t get stung with a cheap Chinese knock-off. Tempting but a waste of money.

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Vanquish 340 isn’t too far out of your price range, running with the same brains as the Equinox but heavily cut back on features and settings. Does the job though and will work well enough for your needs. Works in wet and dry sand at beaches due to being multi frequency which most other detectors even much higher priced won’t. Great on coins and jewellery, very accurate target ID’s. Obviously Equinox is your best bet, but if you want low price and good performance Vanquish will do the job just fine.

Vanquish 340

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Yer Good call Simon. My thoughts straight away was a Vanquish for his price range, then I see you have mentioned it. :+1:

JW :cowboy_hat_face:

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Thanks, all, for your advice. Much appreciated.