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Gold Testing with XRF Analyzers: fast, nondestructive, accurate

Gold Karat AnalyzersOf all the precious metals, the one that is most sought after is gold (Au). As the price of gold continues to climb, more and more organizations are offering "buy-back" programs. Sometimes it is the refiner but very often it is a jeweler or a 'middle man' business - the more "we buy gold" signs that show up means more competition in the market.

Originally developed as a measurement device, X-ray Fluorescence was most common in quality control laboratories. However, developments in the technology have lead to new applications including precious metal and gold content analysis. Technological developments also allowed for XRF instruments to be lower in price and they no longer require liquid nitrogen (LN2) for accurate precious metal identification - factors that created more interest for gold buyers looking for the best accuracy from a nondestructive test.

Quickshot XRF Solutions:
     QSX-79T: when gold buyers are only concerned with the gold content this low-cost XRF is a strong consideration
          
     QSX-79Tplus: new to the line but the best value on the market...offering high accuracy on gold and silver
         
     QSX-295T: the most popular solution because it offers high accuracy for a wide range of precious metals

     QSX-295Tplus: expanding on the QSX-295T, this model offers highest accuracy and 10-second measurements

XRF Sales for Gold Testing Equipment

Method/Technolgy Capability Sample Size Accuracy Limitations Approximate Costs
Fire Assay Only Gold destructive ~250mg 0.02% modifications for Ni and Pd High $50,000
ICP Complete 
Analysis
destructive ~20mg 0.1% time consuming High $150,00
XRF Gold Tester 
(QSX-79T)
Primarily Gold Content NDT nondestructive 0.5 to 1% surface layer, 
flat samples
Moderate
$12,000 +
XRF Full PM Test 
(QSX-295T)
Complete 
Analysis
NDT nondestructive 0.25 to 0.5% surface layer, 
flat samples
Moderate
$25,000 +
Touchstone Only Gold Almost NDT 1-2% unsuitable for high 
karat and white golds
Low $100
Electronic Pen Only Gold NDT 4-8% not consistent Low $250
Density Only Gold NDT Poor only for binary alloys Low $500

Benefits of XRF compared to lower cost gold testers
XRF AccuracyMany buy-back organizations invest in x-ray fluorescence systems to show that their process is a legimate approach and that they are operating a serious business. XRF information screens show the person selling an item the numbers that a pay-out will be based on; making the seller more comfortable and providing assurance that they are working with a serious organization. Lower cost test kits do not provide this feeling to the seller and can not meet the accuracy of an XRF system - allowing for you, the buyer of gold, to limit the inaccuracy of payouts and increasing your confidence when reselling to a refiner, etc.

Benefits of XRF compared to higher cost gold testers
Cost is a major factor; as noted below, an accurate XRF gold tester from Quickshot XRF can be available at a third the cost of a higher end system - and it does not require time, accessories or any expertise to operate. X-ray fluorescence also offers a nondestructive method of gold testing that lets you test a sellers sample quickly and show them the results on an easy to read screen before paying out.

Why Choose a Gold Tester from Quickshot XRF?
As noted above, the QSX-79T provides an excellent middle ground for organizations purchasing gold. It provides higher accuracy and more consistent results than various test kits while also providing your buy-back business with a higher degree of legitimacy.
          Learn more about the benefits QSX Instruments line offers over other desktop analyzers for gold testing

Related Reading
     - XRF-Blog Entry: Standing Out From Other Gold Buyers
     - XRF Blog: FAQ's from gold buyers about XRF Technology
     - Precious Metal Analysis Overview Page