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Test Report - Tesoro Compadre

Tesoro Compadre - Field Test by A.Dealer
(reproduced by kind permission of Searcher magazine)
After a break from detector retailing due to pressures of a day job, I recently decided to take early retirement and run Coinshooters full time, with the prospects of a shop in the Buckinghamshire area.
It was while out detecting with two friends Dave and Gary after the long break that I realised how much can change in the detecting world in a short time and how new technology is making machines smaller. My friends invited me to a site that they have detected for a few years and which has turned up thousands of Roman coins and artefacts. This site is particularly difficult to work as it has many iron fragments and nails. It is a real test of a machine - you can walk over an area 5 feet square, not find anything then walk back and find a coin.
I was using a top of the range machine costing nearly one £1,000, so you don't think you are going to miss anything. Well, that's what I thought! Try as I might, I could not get a threshold, even in all metal, and pinpointing was a real problem due to contamination of iron. I found five coins and was quite pleased with myself, until we got together and I found the others had found 25-30 each, plus a couple of brooches. Just luck I thought, till it happened on the next visit.
I decided to use a small coil and this did improve things, but still I was losing out due to the high iron content of the soil and experiment's proved that any iron in the vicinity of the coil would mask a good signal. Trouble was, I didn't know it! It was only the fact that the others were pulling out the coins that showed it up.
I had got in some stock of new Tesoro/Laser machines from Frank Mellish at Treasure World so I took the cheapest the Tesoro Compadre to try, as I didn't want to spoil my expensive new stock. The machine I used only has one control, an on off/ discrim control, and sweeping it over the site I was surprised how quiet it was. I put this down to its price, thinking I wasn't picking up much as it was a basic machine. How wrong I was! This machine reminded me of the legendary Silver Sabre as all of a sudden in the most contaminated area the coins started coming, with good sharp signals. Two small Roman pinheads, the main part broken off, then a clipped silver siliqua, followed by a few bronze and finally a silver denarius. I was staggered to say the least. There I was with my £1,000 arm breaker not finding anything, and this machine at a fifth of the cost was wiping the floor with it.
Now I am not condemning expensive machines, but it just proves you have to be careful, don't rely on the machine to do it for you, use the right tool in the right place. If you find that finds aren't what they should be, try another machine. I know that we can't all afford it, and being a retailer I do have an advantage, but this machine is so reasonably priced and does an amazing job. So it's one to chuck in the car as a back up - it's BRILLIANT!