Very well said Jim!
As a kid I started with Dad's old military looking machine from maybe the late 60's, then eventually moved up to my own Whites Coinmaster circa 1975? (blue case) and have then later purchased the MXT, (DFX, GMT loaners) and now the new 24K, which I absolutely love, perhaps this is due to the broad manual tuning options on the White's 24K.
I have ALWAYS liked White's workflow, physical setup, the way they process data, and have always felt secure that I'm doing well for my skill and abilities.
One thing I have noticed is the that Minelab seems to have been on a long-term "consumer" binge to sell very bling machines that satisfy fanciful ideas and techno-marketing rather than really out-doing Whites or Garret.
Several months I also wanted a good multipurpose machine with above average gold prospecting capabilities. So I bought the Minelab Equinox 800 for my travel road trips and impromptu gold prospecting opportunities. It's decent, but for or an $850 detector the Nox it is NOT a favorite of mine for gold and seems to be a consumer bling machine with a horrible workflow and is perhaps not well suited for me. I should have stuck with the Whites and maybe get an MX7 or new MXT Pro.
I know others seem to love the Nox, it is evidently made by the gods and does everything is perfectly every-time-out, WOW! They often brag of finding unlimited gold microns over 100' deep, massive stash of ancient relics and prehistoric coins; they carry it to bed, tuck it in, kiss it good night.... Not me, I flung that sh** somewhere far out in the yard hoping the dog will eat it or it gets hit by lightening and blows up- no love lost here!!!!
I'm good with the Whites 24K, it's awesome, solid and accurate. I use it for my gold and general purpose park and field detector.
I should mention that I bought the Equinox 800 (and a GPX 5000 which I love) from Gerry McMullin* (a forum member mentioned above) and will be taking him up on the advanced user training this summer on the 5000. As many here know that Gerry is most honorable in the Metal Detecting community, he provides excellent sales and training and in the mean time has assured me the Equinox 800 would probably work better if I actually give it some love and learned to use it...errr, no way! :-/
* Look up Gerry on the forums or go to: http://www.gerrysdetectors.com/