The Best Metal Detectors for Every Hobbyist
Metal detectors are electronic devices that you can use to find treasures. You can use them when walking in a field or on the beach. Treasure hunters and archaeologists use metal detectors to find valuable objects like coins and jewelry buried underground.
If you’re a hobbyist looking for the best metal detector for your needs, you’ve come to the right place. Several of the most effective metal detectors on the market will be discussed, as well as the reasons why they are best suited to specific tasks. Whether you’re looking for a detector in your backyard or want something to help you find treasure buried deep underground, we have covered you! Keep reading to learn more.
Top 13 Best Metal Detectors
1. Garrett ACE 300
Garrett ACE 300 has all the features you need to find treasure. It has five different detection modes: Zero-Disc, Jewelry, Coin, Relic, and Custom.
The zero-pick mode will activate the sensor to detect all types of metals. This will help you find good objects that are hidden near trash ones. If you want, you can add or eliminate certain types of materials in custom mode, which will increase your chances of finding your target object.
The detector has a digital target ID that tells you how conductive the target metal is. The higher the number, the more valuable the jewelry or metal is. This scale can help you determine what kind of metal is buried beneath the surface.
For $250, you will get a great deal. You will receive a detector, a submersible search coil, and headphones.
2. Bounty Hunter Junior
If you want your children to take a break from video games, you can buy them a Bounty Hunter Junior Metal Detector. It is a great way for them to get some exercise and explore the world outside.
The detector has a screen that will tell your child when he or she has found something. The round search coil can be used in water and wet environments.
This device operates at a frequency of 6.6 kHz. It can detect a variety of objects, including gold and coin-sized objects. The discrimination feature of this detector is also quite useful, as it allows you to turn off signals for undesired items with the push of a button.
3. Minelab Vanquish 540
The Minelab Vanquish 540 is a great detector for intermediate users and experts. It is lightweight and comes with a waterproof 12-inch search coil. This allows you to find objects at greater depths.
The Excalibur II is unique in that it uses Minelab’s Multi-IQ technology. This technology allows the machine to operate at three different frequencies simultaneously, so you can find whatever you are looking for.
This metal detector is perfect for finding things in different environments. You can choose between three pre-set modes, each designed for a specific terrain type. It also has a pinpoint mode to help you locate targets very precisely. It works just as well in dryland, wet sand, and saltwater!
This watch model also includes headphones, a red LED backlight, a rain cover, an arm strap, and rechargeable batteries. It is available for under $370.
4. Fisher 22
The Fisher 22 is a weatherproof metal detector that can be used in tough conditions. It performs admirably in both dry and wet conditions.
The model detects small coins, jewelry, and artifacts at 7.69 kHz. On a single charge, it can run for 15-20 hours. All vital information is displayed on the LCD, including the target ID number, depth level, and battery level.
This metal detector has a 9-inch triangulated concentrated search coil and four operation modes. You can adjust the sensitivity to ten levels and the volume to twenty levels. It also has pinpoint functionality so you can easily find your targets.
There is a feature called FeTone that lets you set the volume of objects with iron lower than the volume of objects without iron. This makes finding what you’re seeking a lot easier.
This metal detector has all the features you need for a successful hunt.
5. National Geographic Pro
The National Geographic Pro Series metal detector is light enough for children to use. It has powerful searching features that professionals desire. It’s a perfect fit for users of various sizes thanks to the adjustable telescopic arm, padded arm strap, and comfortable grip.
This device can help you find small metallic items as deep as 30 centimeters and larger items even deeper. You can set it to look for a specific type of metal or exclude certain metals.
The device continuously shows a sweeping pattern to find buried items as you move along. When it finds something, the LCD screen will show what type of material it is (iron, aluminum, rings, coins).
You can take the entire unit with you because it is so light and portable. Bring it to the park, the beach, or on a hike and use it in your yard.
6.RM Ricomax GC-1028
The RM Ricomax GC-1028 has a modern LCD screen that is easy to assemble. You won’t need to read the instructions because it is easy to assemble directly from the box.
This good metal detector is adjustable, so people of different ages can use it. There are three search modes and one pinpoint mode. This will help you find objects that are 8 inches deep or less. The LCD panel shows how deep the target is, so you will know how far to dig.
This machine has a backlit LCD screen. This is great for people who like to do treasure hunting day or night.
Besides the detector itself, a carrying bag and a tiny shovel are included. The manufacturer’s lifetime warranty and free replacement policies are even more outstanding (if you purchase via Amazon). It’s impossible to go wrong with this detector.
7. Nokta Makro Simplex+
Nokta Makro Simplex+ makes metal detecting accessible for everyone. It is simple enough for beginners and has features that advanced users will appreciate.
The device has all the features you need — like automatic ground balancing, multiple search modes, and an easy-to-understand menu design. Plus, it comes with helpful extras like an LED flashlight and keypad backlight.
Simplex+ operates at a 12 kHz frequency. This means it can detect different types of materials. You can also change the frequency to better suit your needs, for example, by reducing interference from other machines that operate at a similar frequency.
When the device finds the target, it vibrates. This is a very important tool for detecting users who are underwater or who are deaf.
Nokta Makro offers firmware updates (which can be installed via USB) at regular intervals to get the most out of your detector.
8. Garrett AT Pro
The Garrett AT Pro is a high-quality machine used on land and in freshwater and saltwater (up to 10 feet). You can use it to find things you want, like coins or jewelry, by choosing which items you want to accept.
The electronic pinpointer has four different settings, which you can use to change the frequency. It is easy to find the exact location with a pushbutton.
The metal detector has a feature that allows you to hear what kind of metal an object is. This helps find things like bottle caps and washers.
This machine is perfect for serious enthusiasts. It can pinpoint where you need to dig within 2 inches. If cost is a concern, you might want to choose a different brand.
9. Fisher F75
The Fisher F75 has advanced features and technology that make it more versatile. It has better depth, target separation, and audio functionality than other devices.
Due to the gadget’s digital shield technology (DST), you can get closer to your target without the device becoming unstable or creating noise.
The detector operates at a frequency of 13 kHz, which means it can find a lot of different targets in different ground conditions. You can also shift frequencies to find specific objects such as coins, gold, silver, and relics. The detector can do this easily, even in regions with high iron levels.
FastGrab is a feature that makes automatic ground balancing possible. To eliminate influence from naturally occurring minerals in the earth, it examines the magnetic characteristics of the soil.
The LCD screen will show the detected item’s electrical signature (target ID). The LCD screen will also show how deep the ground is (mineralization).
The OMMO metal detector comes with a waterproof search coil that can detect small coins and metal objects up to 8 inches deep. It also has three different modes to help you find what you’re looking for. For example, the Disc mode can help you differentiate between different types of metals. The detector works on dryland, beaches, and underwater. Still, it should be avoided in areas with a lot of metal waste or highly mineralized soil.
11. Fisher GoldBug-DP
The Fisher GoldBug-DP is intended to aid in the discovery of small gold items. It features a complex ground balancing system, superior discriminating control, and separate signal strength and threshold control.
This device operates at a frequency of 19 kHz. This means that it can find very small gold nuggets, even in soils with many minerals. The device also gives continuous readings of the ground condition. Like the Ground Phase value, the Fe3O4 graphic shows the amount of mineralization.
The OT-MD03 metal detector is a great choice for beginners. It can search for aluminum, gold, silver, and bronze in multiple terrains. You can tell the difference between these materials by their unique audio signals. The DISC range can be configured to help you ignore junk objects more easily.
A 10-inch search coil, tote bag, folding shovel, and user manual are included with the equipment. The machine needs 8x AA batteries to work. People usually use alkaline batteries instead of carbon ones.
13. Garrett Sea Hunter MK-II
Sea Hunter MK-II is a pulse induction metal detector that can be used to explore treasures up to 200 feet deep. It has 22 frequencies that make it the best choice for harsh environments. The detector is waterproof, and the included headphones are submersible. This makes it perfect for scuba divers and users who like to hunt sunken treasures. It can be assembled into four configurations: short, long, full length, or hip mount.
The Best Metal Detectors Reviews
Metal detectors are devices that find metal buried under the ground, in the sand, or in water. Creating a magnetic field around an electrical search coil is how metal detectors function. This magnetic field spreads out to an average depth of 10 inches. If there is conductive material within the detector’s range, it will disrupt the magnetic field. The detector will give you a visual and audio alert letting you know that you have found something.
Metal detecting can be a great hobby for individuals or families with children. Some people do it as a professional career. The best metal detector for you depends on how and where you want to use it and whether you want a simple model or one with more features.
Types of Metal Detectors
Metal detectors are divided into three categories based on how they work and what they detect. There is very low frequency (VLF) detectors, pulse induction (PI), and specialty.
Very Low Frequency (VLF) Detectors
VLF detectors are the most prevalent and cost-effective kind of metal detector. They work by creating a magnetic field using a transmitter coil. The detector coil will then sense any disturbance in the field caused by conductive materials.
VLF detectors are a great option for beginners and children because they are inexpensive, easy to find, lightweight, and durable. This metal detector is typically used to find coins, jewelry, relics, and other metal deposits. While water-resistant and waterproof VLF detectors are available, pulse induction (PI) detectors are better for underwater metal detection.
Pulse Induction (PI) Detectors
VLF detectors consist of two coils. Pulse induction (PI) metal detectors are equipped with a single-coil. This single coil both transmits the magnetic field and detects conductive substances. The single-coil architecture of PI detectors is less impacted by ground mineralization than VLF detectors. Hence PI detectors are preferable when searching beaches, rivers, or underwater (if you have a waterproof detector).
Because they cannot distinguish between iron garbage, such as nails, and riches, such as money or gold, PI detectors are not the best metal detectors in cities. PI detectors are additionally more costly than VLF metal detectors. Metal-detecting novices may not wish to make such a substantial expenditure.
Some metal detectors can do different things, like finding gold or water. They are called “specialty” detectors because they can do more than just find metal. There are two types of these detectors- the VLF detector and the PI detector.
- Multifrequency metal detectors can be used in a variety of places. They are good for professionals or hobbyists who like to find things in different places. They can be utilized in the city, on the beach, in a river or lake, and even in the ocean. The downside is that they are expensive.
- Gold metal detectors are designed to find gold. They can be either a VLF or a PI detector. They have a higher frequency than other detectors, so they will not set off alerts when they encounter salts and other minerals commonly detected while searching for gold.
- There are different types of waterproof metal detectors. Some have waterproof coils for searching in the shallows at the beach or in a river. Others are fully submersible with waterproof coils and sealed controls that you can use while scuba diving. Make sure that the level of waterproofing you need is available on the product you choose.
Considerations When Selecting the Best Metal Detector
Think about how you will use a metal detector to find treasures before choosing one. Consider the features that would help you do this.
Think about what you will be using your metal detector for. If you are using it near a river, ocean, or lake, you should buy a product with waterproof coils. Or, if you want to use it underwater, find one that is completely submersible.
If you’re looking for gold, you don’t need to worry about waterproofing. You’ll want to find a metal detector specifically designed to find gold. You’ll want a VLF detector if you’re looking for other historical items, like Civil War relics. This type of detector can tell the difference between screws and coins. Some people prefer PI detectors because they will detect most types of metal, which allows the hunter to sort through everything they find.
Discrimination is a metal detector’s capacity to differentiate between various types of metal. For example, a detector with good discrimination would be able to tell the difference between a coin and a bottle cap.
Having a detector with excellent discrimination means you don’t have to stop and dig everything up. You can just go through and only pick up the things that the detector says are worth getting. This saves time because you don’t have to spend as long looking through everything. Not everyone needs this kind of discrimination, but for some relic hunters, it is very important. They would rather find everything and then sort through it themselves instead of letting a machine do it.
There are trace levels of metals and metal alloys in the soil. No matter where a metal detector is used, these traces might hinder its capacity to locate coins, jewelry, and other metal objects. However, metal detectors with a ground balance feature can disregard these metals, resulting in fewer false positives. There are four primary ground balance types:
- Automatic ground balance means that the detector will automatically adjust for interference. This happens without any user input.
- The user cannot adjust the predetermined ground balance. The manufacturer conducts testing and establishes the detection threshold, allowing the device to disregard minor interferences that fall below this threshold.
- You can change the ground balance setting on your detector to match the type of target you are looking for. If you don’t know how to set ground balance properly, you might find it difficult to use a detector that has this feature.
- Multiple ground balance levels let you choose how to set the ground balance. You can do it manually or have it on an automatic setting.
A metal detector with target identification can help you find different objects. It can tell the difference between valuable things, like jewelry, and less valuable things, like coins. This is helpful because you don’t have to dig everything up if you know it’s not valuable.
When a metal detector finds something, it will make a high-pitched sound or show a visual notification. The high-pitched sound means that the object is valuable. The visual notification will show an icon of the object’s type. Most metal detectors contain five or six indicator symbols for common discoveries, such as coins.
The frequency of a metal detector is the number of times per second that the signal is transmitted and received. Low-frequency metal detectors can scan deeper into the earth than medium- or high-frequency detectors. That is why they are so effective at locating massive, buried objects. Most metal detectors have a frequency range between low and medium.
If you are looking for small objects or gold, you might want a metal detector that operates at a high frequency. These detectors transmit at a higher frequency than low-frequency detectors, which means they can identify small objects that would be missed by a low-frequency detector.
The sensitivity of a metal detector is the distance at which it can detect conductive items. Most metal detectors are branded with the sensitivity level suggested for most applications. In certain circumstances, the user may be required to reduce the device’s sensitivity to function properly. It may be necessary to alter the level if, for instance, the search region has a high mineral concentration or is close to electrical lines.
If the gadget does not respond to conductive materials, the sensitivity may need to be increased. Be mindful that if the detector’s sensitivity is set too high, there will be a lot of distortion and static. Reducing the sensitivity should resolve the problem.
Search depth is how a metal detector can detect conductive material. The search depth varies a lot between different metal detectors. Low-frequency detectors can find things at a greater depth than high-frequency detectors.
Your metal detector’s ability to find things is based on more than the model of metal detector you are using. The location of where you are looking, the type of ground, and things above or below ground can all affect how deep your metal detector can search.
The weight of a metal detector is an important factor to consider when buying one. You’ll be carrying it around for a while, so choose a not too heavy detector. That way, you can focus on the readings and your findings.
If you are buying a metal detector to share with others, think carefully about who you will be sharing it with. Children need a metal detector that is not too heavy and can be adjusted to their height. Sharing a metal detector with someone different in size or strength will also impact which detector you select. Adults with back or shoulder injuries should avoid heavy detectors that could worsen their health problems.
Top 7 Best Metal Detectors
1. RM RICOMAX Professional Metal Detector GC-1037
The RM RICOMAX Professional Metal Detector has a discrimination mode. This is helpful for relic hunters because they can use the all-metal and pinpoint modes to find valuable items. This may not be detected by a computerized discrimination system.
RM RICOMAX detector is waterproof to a depth of 4.5 feet and lightweight at 2.3 pounds. It has an ergonomic grip to reduce fatigue over long periods of use. This VLF metal detector can search up to 6 inches deep and has a large LCD display with visual indicators for target identification, discrimination mode, and sensitivity adjustment. Two 9-volt batteries are included with the unit.
2. Garrett 1140900 Pro-Pointer AT Waterproof Pinpointing
Suppose you are looking for a metal detector that is easy to use. In that case, the Garrett Pro-Pointer AT Metal Detector is a great option. It is only 9 inches long and weighs 6.9 ounces, making it easy to maneuver when swimming. It can also be submerged in up to 10 feet of water, so you can easily search the shallows of rivers, lakes, and oceans.
The Garrett Pro-Pointer has a locator alarm that will sound if you lose it. The alarm activates automatically after 5 minutes if the user doesn’t press a button on the detector during that time. This VLF metal detector can scan to a depth of 3 inches, using one of three different sensitivity settings. With its pinpointing tip, scraping blade, and LED light, you can locate objects buried in soft sands and murky waters.
3. Minelab GPX 4500
This detector has SETA technology which means it is immune to interference. Magnetic interference will not bother this detector because it has a special technology called “Smart Electronic Timing Alignment.” There are six timing options, and each one can be adjusted to work best for you.
This detector has many features. The display includes a backlight for nighttime viewing. The stabilizer makes it easier to find faint signals, and the “iron reject” option filters out junk metal.
4. Minelab Gold Monster 1000
The Gold Monster 1000 from Minelab has a gold chance indicator. This means you can know how likely gold is before you start digging.
The controls are easy to use. The coil is waterproof up to 3-feet. The control box is rainproof. You also choose coils, battery options, and shaft configurations.
The intermediate 45 kHz frequency and high-speed signal processor make the detector more sensitive to gold, no matter how small the nugget is.
5. Sailnovo Metal Detector
The Sailnovo Professional Metal Detector is versatile and can be used by both children and adults. It can find metals on land and in shallow water.
This detector can find different types of metal, like gold, silver, bronze, aluminum, and iron. You can use the DISC Model to choose the specific type of metal you want to look for. The detector will then ignore other metals to only find what you’re looking for.
This tool also has an audio mode. This model emits different sounds for different metals. This helps improve precision and accuracy when detecting metals.
The detector has a large LCD screen that shows all the important information. This includes the operating mode, sensitivity level, recognition area, target metal, target depth, and battery status.
The metal detector is designed for people of all ages, from kids to adults. The detector is very lightweight and only weighs 6.59 lbs. It also has an adjustable stem that can be adjusted to different lengths, between 40.55″ and 47.24″.
The search coil is waterproof, which means that you can use it to detect metals in shallow waters and on beaches.
6. Dr.Ötek Metal Detector
The Dr. Otek metal detector is a device that can find metal underwater. It is good for finding things in a specific spot. It is also waterproof, so it can be used in water.
This detector can help you find historic wrecks at ocean depths and riverbeds. It is lightweight and easy to carry, so you can take it wherever you go. It is also completely waterproof, so you can use it in any environment.
The detector has a 360-degree coil. This means that it can find metals and jewelry, even if you are not pointing the director directly at it. It saves you time and makes treasure hunting more fun.
The detector does not make any noise. It vibrates when it finds metal. An LED light also flashes different colors to show how much metal the detector found. Adults and children can use this to locate treasure without disturbing nature. Using this detector, you can find things like antique coins, gold, and silver.
7. Pudibe Metal Detector
The Pudibe Metal Detector is a metal detector used by both kids and adults. It is submersible and waterproof, making it ideal for various settings.
The detector is built to be waterproof and has a battery backup that lasts more than 48 hours. The pinpointer helps you find metals more accurately. You can find coins, gold, silver, and jewelry with great precision.
The Pudibe metal detector has an audio mode, vibrator mode (silent), and vibrator and audio mode. It also has three different levels of sensitivity. Depending on how close the metal is to the detector, it will emit a different sound or vibration.
The pinpointer can detect any metal from a distance of 6 to 19 inches. It has a LED light which is also waterproof.
Frequently Asked Questions about Best Metal Detectors
The Bounty Hunter Tracker IV is the best-selling and most-reviewed detector on Amazon. It typically sells for less than $100. In return, you get a very basic machine that is hard to work with both on its own and when compared to the Nokta Makro Simplex+ and the Garrett Ace 300.
Metal detectors that are less than $500 can be good for most people. If you are just starting, this is a good price range. Metal detectors that cost between $500 and $1,000 have more technology, so the price is higher.
Most Bounty Hunter metal detectors can find targets from 0″ to 6″ inches below the ground. Depending on the model and the mineralizations in the ground, you may be able to go as deep as 11″ inches.
People have different reasons for starting a hobby. When it comes to metal detecting, people do it for different reasons. Some people want to make money from it, some want to get exercise, some want to explore the outdoors, and some just want to make new friends. No matter your reason, metal detecting is a hobby worth trying.
The most popular metal detectors are the Nokta Makro Simplex, Garrett Ace, and Fisher F series. If you’re a beginner, don’t let adjustable ground balance or advanced features scare you. These features will help you grow into a hobby.
You can make money from mining, but you need to learn the trade first. You need to be in the top 20% of miners to make a good living. This isn’t like going to college, but research is involved and finding a good location. You’ll also need to know how to build your mine and extract gold.
In 1874, inventor Gustave Pierre Trouvé from Paris built the first metal detector. People started to use it to find things like guns and knives. Mr. Bell made his metal detector a few years later, probably an induction balance type.
Pulse induction metal detectors are different from other detectors. They use one coil as both the transmitter and receiver. This coil sends short bursts of electricity into the ground near the target. These bursts last for milliseconds and then repeat.
The most popular metal detectors are the Nokta Makro Simplex, Garrett Ace, and Fisher F series. These detectors are easy-to-use. You don’t need to worry about the ground balance or advanced features. You can grow into these features if you want to.
The AT Pro is an all-terrain detector used on land and underwater. However, the headphones that come with it are not waterproof and cannot be submerged.
The Ace 400i has a function that lets you know there are multiple objects. The elliptical and waterproof 21.5 x 28 cm DD search coil (8.5 x 11 inches) will help you find things at different depths. You can locate objects as little as a coin, as deep as 35 centimeters, or as huge as 1.25 meters.
The Garrett Ace 250 is a portable metal detector locating buried coins, jewelry, gold nuggets, and metal garbage. It is a great detector for the price, but it is important to use it correctly to get the most out of it.
Garrett Ace detectors are the most popular for beginners in the Garrett lineup! They are dependable and inexpensive while being well-made and simple to use. A simple interface is ideal for novices (both young and old).