Nokta Makro Impact Pro Pack Metal Detector
- Product Review (submitted on April 30, 2018):
Nokta Impact Pro-Package Review
First off, I HATE when people give reviews of something they have only used a few times. I understand their excitement, but It misleads people… So I waited for almost a year of heavy usage before posting this review.
I think it's important to know, I live in Upstate NY and have thrown every season and temperature at this machine. I bring it to work every day and get at least a 45 minute dig in at lunch or after work and countless hours on the weekend. I do it all seasons too, in the winter when the ground is frozen I use my GPS and mark target locations to return in the spring or I’m in the deep woods looking for the sounds of civilization (iron). I wear cold weather insulated waders and detect the creeks (when they’re not frozen solid) I even detect at night time with a head lamp or with the built in flashlight on the Nokta. So, when I tell you I put the IMPACT through its paces, I sincerely mean it!
First, I have been insanely passionate about detecting for over 25 years. I have used everything from the old White's Coinmasters to the AT Pro, E-TRAC. XP Deus, X-Terra 705, White's Prism series detectors and even the old and new Radio Shack Bounty Hunters… Hands down the Nokta Impact is the absolute best all around detecting workhorse I’ve ever used and here’s why.
Weight and balance are beautiful! It balances perfect; even without using the cuff strap.
The separation is absolutely INSANE and easily on par if not exceeding the XP Deus and the CTX-3030 in heavy iron (I’VE USED BOTH). It’s insane! The separation and unmasking ability of this machine, to me is where the power lies. If the gain is set under 90 recovery and separation are wicked fast! Over 90 and you lose separation and recovery speed, but gain depth… So remember gain over 90? Swing slower!
The standard coil is the best standard coil I have ever used! It’s light, sturdy and has the potential to go crazy deep. I believe the U shape at the front and back of the coil is the secret to its separation abilities inside the double D. On stock Coin Modes you will have little problem pulling dime sized targets at around 7”- 9” depending on ground conditions. Want it to look deeper? Get into deep mode, raise the gain past 90 and slow your sweep speed. If you want to really KILL IT in heavy trash, use the small sniper coil they send with the pro package. It’s like the difference between a steak knife and a scalpel when it comes to precision… you will still cut through the crap, but you’ll do it with ease with the small coil. You wouldn’t even believe the stuff I find in heavy iron and trashy parks using my settings and the sniper coil!
My personal favorite feature on the unit is the ability to lower the Ferrous Volume. It allows you to still hear the iron but it allows good targets to JUMP out of the earth even with iron EVERYWHERE in the ground next to it. I prefer to swing wide open with Zero Disc so the ability to lower the ferrous tones is a godsend in trashy parks.
My favorite trashy park setting: DI3 Gain: 70 / Discrimination: O / Fe. Volume at 2. / Frequency 20KHZ. Why? Well, I almost always hunt in Zero Discrimination. I want to hear everything under the ground. Zero Discrimination is essential for the trashy areas if you want to get the silver others (using discrimination) have missed. Sometimes you will hear a high-tone in one direction, but when you swing the opposite 90 degree angle, it disappears. Most will continue walking, as this is believed to be junk or iron falsing. However, if you can hear the iron along with the high tone, a pro detectorist will know it is possibly an iron nail resting above the coin, so they dig it and sometimes find silver next to a nail. Discriminate iron out and you won’t even hear the high chirp, as the discriminated nail will be choking off the tone. This has been the case for me at least 30% of the time.
Why I Use the DI3 program with the gain set to 70. Lightning fast separation and less depth. Why would I want less depth? The park is old and the garbage is deep. Therefore even more of a cacophony of sounds to drive you nuts. Lower gain keeps me at about 6” of detection depth and a ferrous volume of 2 lets me hear the iron, but just faintly. Enough to know it’s there, but not enough to drive me nuts with mixed tones. One I’ve cleaned a spot out of the chirps I turn up the gain and listen for the deeper chirps…This has helped me pull some of my finest finds!
I love the 3 frequency options. Some days I’m in the mood to dig everything and look for jewelry and Gold using the 20 KHZ in VLX2 with Zero Disc, Zero Notch and Ferrous Volume at 2. Using this program I can close my eyes and hear the smallest high-tone, deep targets may not get the VDI to show, but if it’s consistent at all, I dig it and usually find a coin or something good. Maybe it’s because I’ve used it so much, but I rarely get fooled with the falsing of bent iron nails. If I’m looking for Septic tanks or other deep underground object like old farm equipment and tools I flip it over to Deep or DI2 (depending on soil and mineralization), max gain possible without noise is usually around 94-95 around here, disc zero, Notch 10, Ferrous Volume at 2 and 5khz. I’ve pulled ax heads at over 2’ deep and with these setting, when it hits a target it’s incredibly obvious!
Ground balancing and pinpointing are beautiful and super easy with the gun trigger design; it’s out of the way and perfectly placed so you don’t need to look at the machine searching for the corresponding GB/PP buttons. I was worried the design would be cheesy and break easily… nope, rock solid and perfectly placed!
The bipod attachment is pretty useful since the detector isn’t water proof, so when I’m digging in the crap weather, I don’t have to worry about setting the detector in the water and mud while using it. If you don’t have it deployed in crappy weather you do run the risk of resting the speaker in the wet. The folks at Nokta must have realized that, so the pro package gives you a really nice heavy canvas like protector for the speaker/battery area and one for the brain and screen and that seems to work fine… though if using the protection cover you will have to use headphones or the speaker gets muffled and hard to hear. The only solution then is to crank it up, but then you lose battery life. Another alternative is to bypass the sound, use the vibration in 2 tone…it is very responsive and I love it in farm fields and anywhere I need stealth from other hunters.
I do like the fact that the coil wire is snuck inside the arm, but don’t be fooled this is NOT the collapsible king of portability (XP Deus). It will allow you to reduce the arm length by about 3 inches but after that you're stressing the coil cable inside the arm. On the positive side it is better in wooded areas, as you won’t be getting caught up with weeds and branches, but for me it is more of a novelty than a super functional addition to the machine. There have been some issues of bad coils due to the way it comes out the side of the coil arm. I personally have had no problems to date, but all the folks I have read having the problem say Nokta will fix the issue in future machines and send out a new arm and cable to these users if still under warranty. Now that does rock…however, the company is in the Ukraine and shipping back and forth will have you out of the game for at-least 3-4 weeks. However, I say again, I have put this machine through its paces and have had ZERO issues.
My favorite headphones for this unit is a pair of wired Grey Ghost headphones and this is based solely on the reproduction of tone sounds. I have the wireless red edition, but much like the Makro Multi Kruzer phones, I feel like the tones are compressed and not as easy to identify the difference between the deeper iffy tones. The wireless 2.4 red edition give a bit of a popping sound, especially if you use disc. Not sure why, but perhaps one of the updates will clear that up a bit. For now I use the wireless in 2 tone Di2 or Deep as there isn’t a problem once ferrous volume is dropped to F2. The ability to change the break-point of tones is great and once you know what you’re doing you can really dial this machine into a sniper rifle of detectors.
As for after-market coils, I Just bought the Mars 15” Goliath and will update with my thoughts. I wish NEL would start making some for the Impact and the Kruzer… I’ve grown to love them!
In closing there are few things I would change about this machine. It does exactly what it says it does in bringing old sites back to life and I can swing it all day without much fatigue. Whether you want to coin shoot, find jewelry, relic hunt or just find property markers with ease, this machine is one hell of a treasure tool and I’m sure once you try it… you will agree. I can’t see buying a replacement for it…Though I did get the Multi Kruzer for the waterproof feature and the same core abilities of the Impact.
I know many of you read reviews like I do. You should know I do NOT work for a company and I haven’t been paid for any review I write, no kickbacks…Nada. This is just to help all of you to decide, weed through the hype and get the machine that works best for you and your hunting style. Good luck folks and happy hunting!