What is the Best Metal Detector?

Welcome to Mr Metal Detector the home of the best metal detector reviews. Please checkout the list that I have compiled, which shows the top 3 metal detectors in each of the following categories:

Beginner | Intermediate | Expert / Professional | Ultimate
>>> Metal Detector Comparison Chart <<<

Top 3 Beginner Metal Detectors

Best Metal Detector for Beginners

1st Place – Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV Metal Detector

1st Place

Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV Metal DetectorBuy
The Bounty Hunter TK4 gets 1st place in our best metal detector list for the beginner category simply because it does a great job for the price you have to pay. It really is about as good as you are going to get for under $100.

The Bounty Hunter TK4 is very user friendly, and offers effective performance in a variety of conditions. It also eliminates the need for ground balancing with its built-in automatic ground trac feature.

Bounty Hunter TK4 Features:

  • Rugged metal detector ideal for detecting treasure in extreme ground conditions
  • Motion All-Metal mode, Discrimination mode, and 2-Tone audio mode
  • Preset ground balance neutralizes response to mineral content in the ground
  • Disc/notch control distinguishes between targets and unwanted metals
  • Low battery indicator
  • Adjustable height design
  • Padded armrest
  • Detector stand
  • Five year limited warranty

Read more about the Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV Metal Detector

 

2nd Place – Garrett Ace 150 Metal Detector

2nd Place

Garrett Ace 150 Metal DetectorBuy
The Garrett Ace 150 metal detector gets 2nd place in our best metal detector list for the beginner category. It is more expensive than the Bounty Hunter TK4, but it also offers a few additional features and even has a great starter pack containing DVDs which are included in the Ace 150 bundle.

The Garrett Ace 150 is very user friendly and comes with a DVD and Book teaching everything a beginner needs to know to get started with detecting – if you don’t want to go looking around on how to get started with metal detecting, then this pack is for you. This detector comes automatically adjusted for ground minerals.

Garrett Ace 150 Features:

  • Rugged metal detector ideal for detecting treasure in extreme ground conditions
  • Coin Depth Indicator
  • Large LCD Screen
  • Light Weight
  • 3 depth levels
  • 4 Sensitivity settings
  • Audio and Graphic target identification
  • Includes headphones, treasure pouch, digging tool and arm strap
  • Requires 4 AA Batteries (batteries included)
  • Low Battery Indicator
  • Length: 42″ to 51″ – Adjustable
  • Weight: 2.7 lbs. (1.2 kgs.)
  • Frequency – 7.2 kHz
  • Detector stand
  • 2 year warranty

Read more about the Garrett Ace 150 Metal Detector

 

3rd Place – Bounty Hunter QSIGWP Quick Silver Metal Detector

3rd Place

Bounty Hunter QSIGWPBuy

The Bounty Hunter Quick Silver Hobby Metal Detector is our 3rd place beginner metal detector. I really like this metal detector as a package as it comes with a handy pin pointer, which after you have been metal detecting for a while, you will understand just how useful these tools can be. I also like that the detector is super simple to use, so it is difficult to get confused if you are a novice.

This detector like most detectors these days has a preset ground balance to neutralize minerals in the ground. The Quick Silver features a great LCD display with 4 segment digital target identification and 3 tone feedback.

Bounty Hunter QSIGWP Features:

  • Requires Two 9-Volt Batteries
  • Depth Detection: 8″ for coin-size objects; 3′ for large objects
  • Operates on Two 9-Volt Alkaline Batteries (not included)
  • Low Battery Indicator
  • Visual Target System: LCD Display
  • Preset Ground Balance: Neutralizes the response to ground mineral content
  • Modes of Operation: Motion all-metal, progressive discrimination, and variable notch system
  • Audio Feedback: Internal speaker or headphones (not included)
  • 1/4″ Headphone Jack: Compatible with most headphones
  • Lightweight: 2.8 lbs.
  • Ergonomic: Adjustable height, padded armrest, S-rod system, detector stand
  • Electrical Specs: 7 KHz
  • Fully automatic ground balance with squelch-tech eliminates false signals
  • Push-button discrimination and 1-touch depth control makes it easier to use
  • Digital target identification display with 3-tone audio feedback for detection
  • Easy-view LCD display is readable at varying distances for users tall and short
  • Ships in Certified Frustration-Free Packaging

Read more about the Bounty Hunter QSIGWP Quick Silver Metal Detector

 

Top 3 Mid Metal Detectors

Best Metal Detector for Intermediate Users

In this category I have rated based more on performance and overall experience. The reason for this is that if you want to get serious about detecting, you have to spend anywhere in that $300 to $600 price range. These detectors still aren’t top of the line, but they are a great mid way point between getting your feet wet as a beginner and going full pro.

1st Place – Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector

1st Place

Garrett AT Pro Metal DetectorBuy

I have awarded 1st place in this category to the Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector. The reason it gets number 1 over the others is because it is so versatile and is almost the perfect mid way point between what a beginner is looking for, versus what the professionals use. The only down site to the AT Pro is the price, which is around about the $600 mark. That can be a little steep for many people wanting to just try their hand at metal detecting, and so it really is perfectly priced in the intermediate range of detectors considering how many advanced features it contains.

Garrett AT Pro Video

The following is a great little introduction video for the AT Pro by Garrett. I recommend watching this video before purchasing so you can get a feel for how many functions it actually contains.

Garrett AT Pro Features:

  • Rugged metal detector ideal for detecting treasure in extreme ground conditions
  • Standard and professional audio modes
  • Coin Depth Indicator
  • Frequency 15 kHz
  • Pro Mode Audio
  • Large LCD Screen
  • High-resolution iron discrimination
  • Iron Audio
  • Low Battery Indicator
  • All terrain versatility
  • Digital target ID
  • Manual ground balance
  • Fast Track ground balance
  • Electronic pinpointing
  • Headphones included
  • Length (adjustable) 42″ to 51″ (1.06m – 1.29m)
  • Total weight 3.03 lbs (1.4 kgs)
  • Batteries 4 AA (included)
  • Two-year warranty

Read more about the Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector

 

2nd Place – Garrett Ace 350 Metal Detector

2nd Place

Garrett Ace 350 Metal DetectorBuy

The Garrett Ace 350 Metal Detector gets 2nd place mainly due to its price. It is a higher end machine when compared to the Garrett Ace 150 and the Garrett Ace 250, but it doesn’t have the really high price tag of some of the other metal detectors in this range. You can expect to spend around $300 to $350 for this model, but it is likely that you will see a quick return on investment with this unit.

The Garrett 350 metal detector has the trademarked “Rhino-Tough” DD search coil. This coil allows you to treasure hunt in highly mineralized areas like ocean salt water and also really tough terrain. The coil is quite large in size and provides quite a narrow detection area, but it goes deep and is very accurate. Note: This detector is great for water use as it almost floats on its own making it very light weight and easy to use.

The main negative for this device when compared to the AT Pro is the 8.25 kHz frequency Vs the 15 kHz frequency.

 

Garrett Ace 350 Video

The following video is a short introduction to the Garrett 350. If you have never used a Garrett before it is worth viewing, otherwise there probably isn’t much new in it for you.

Garrett Ace 350 Features:

  • Rugged metal detector ideal for detecting treasure in extreme ground conditions
  • Enhanced Iron Resolution
  • Frequency 8.25 kHz
  • Standard and professional audio modes
  • Coin Depth Indicator
  • 8.5″ x 11″ Double-D search coil
  • Large LCD Screen
  • Low Battery Indicator
  • All terrain versatility
  • Headphones included
  • Length (adjustable) 42″ to 51″ (1.06m – 1.29m)
  • Total weight 2.8 lbs. (1.27 kgs.)
  • Detector stand
  • Batteries 4 AA (included)
  • Two-year warranty

Read more about the Garrett Ace 350 Metal Detector

 

3rd Place – Minelab X-Terra 305

3rd Place

Minelab X-Terra 305Buy

I know that many people will wonder why Minelab haven’t featured earlier than number 3, but truth be told I really feel like Minelab focuses at the upper end of the market. Their products are all quality, but you would not likely buy one when you are just starting out – unless you are sure you will enjoy it.

The Minelab X-Terra 305 is essentially an entry model Minelab metal detector and it is a beauty. When you buy a Minelab you know you are buying quality and the reason why it only got 3rd in this category is because it just doesn’t cut it as an expert detector and it isn’t as feature rich as the previous 2 Garretts that I reviewed.

 

Minelab X-Terra 305 Video

The following video shows all the standard functions accessible via the display. If you have used a Minelab before then this is nothing new, but if you haven’t and you want to get started with Minelab detectors – then please watch this video.

Minelab X-Terra 305 Features:

  • Minelab’s proprietary “True Digital” VFLEX technology – allows you to change the operating frequency by changing coils.
  • Compatible with Medium Frequency (7kHz) and High Frequency (18.75kHz) coils – 6 accessory coil options offer increased versatility.
  • Ground Balance capability with ability to do manual adjustments of 0-20.
  • 2 preset patterns
  • All-Metal mode.
  • Choice of 1,2 or 3 tone ID’s plus multi-tone Target ID (12) response.
  • Threshold adjustment, with a range of -5 to 25. a
  • Noise Cancel function with 3 manual settings.
  • Rapid recovery Pin-Point with variable tone and graphical indicator.
  • Target Volume adjust (0-10) allowing you to get more definitive audio information on each target.
  • Depth indicator.
  • LCD display.
  • 4 x AA batteries.
  • Weight (1.3kgs).
  • 3 Year Manufacturer Warranty

Read more about the Minelab X-Terra 305

 

Top 3 Professional Metal Detectors

Best Metal Detector for Experts

At this end of the market you expect the very best of the best when it comes to features and detecting capabilities, but you will pay for them as these detectors don’t come cheap. These detectors normally aren’t for your average hobbyist, but rather someone who has been metal detecting for a number of years and knows that they want all the bells and whistles.

1st Place – Minelab CTX 3030

1st Place

Minelab CTX 3030Buy

The Minelab CTX 3030 is a great machine – no one can argue that. It is one of Minelab’s premier metal detectors and you will have no trouble finding hidden treasure with this bad boy. It has a great range of features and is excellent at detecting precious metals – particularly gold and silver.

The CTX will set you back around $2,500, however if you look around for a 2nd hand one you might find one cheaper.

The only negative that I have with this detector (and to be fair I have it with a lot of them) is that the screen can be difficult to see if the sun is in a poor position above you.

 

Minelab CTX 3030 Video

This video gives a great overview of the CTX 3030 and is well worth watching.

Minelab CTX 3030 Features:

  • Full Color LCD
  • Multiple frequencies: 1.5 – 100kHz
  • Waterproof to 10 ft. (3 m)
  • Included GPS Locating
  • Target Trace
  • PC Mapping (with Google Maps)
  • Wireless Audio and Built-in speaker
  • Depth indicator
  • Ferris coin separation technology
  • 10 fully customizable detect modes, including 5 preset (Coins, Beach, Relic, Silver & High Trash)
  • Auto Compensation and Auto Ground Balance
  • Length – Min 37 in. (940 mm) – Max 55.3 in. (1405 mm)
  • Weight – 5.20 lbs (2.36 kgs) including Li-ion battery pack
  • 1 Lithium ion battery required (included)
  • Warranty – 3 years control box & coil

Read more about the Minelab CTX 3030

 

2nd Place – Minelab E-TRAC

2nd Place

Minelab E-TRAC Metal DetectorBuy

Originally I had planned to put the Minelab E-TRAC in 1st place as, it really is a great machine and it is a lot cheaper than the CTX 3030, but price alone isn’t what wins fans. When you are serious about metal detecting you want the best features and the latest technology – a couple of years ago the E-TRAC was that machine, now it has been surpassed by the CTX 3030.

An E-TRAC costs around $1,500 to $1,600 – so it is around $1,000 cheaper than a CTX 3030. So if you are on a strict budget I would still highly recommend the E-TRAC and if you want to get better detection rates then think about buying an aftermarket coil like the 12×10 S.E.F butterfly coil.

 

Minelab E-TRAC Video

There are hundreds of great review videos for the E-TRAC, so if this one doesn’t give you enough information – I would try searching YouTube. Remember that are the time of this video the CTX 3030 hadn’t been released yet.

Minelab E-TRAC Features:

  • 28 Frequencies ranging from 1.5kHz – 100kHz
  • E-TRAC Xchange USB functionality
  • Smartfind
  • 4 pre-programmed user modes
  • 4 personalized modes
  • Threshold adjustment level 1-50 scale
  • Pinpoint with audio and visual indicators
  • 8 “AA” Alkaline Battery Holder
  • 11″ FBS Coil Cover
  • Detector Stand
  • Very large display (72mm x 48mm (2.8″ x 1.9″)) LCD with contrast adjustment
  • Battery 1600mAh NiMH or alkaline batteries
  • Low battery alert Audio & visual indication
  • Length 1060mm -1380mm (41.7″ – 54.3″)
  • Weight 1.6kg (3.5lbs) (ex. battery)
  • 3 years control box & coil warranty

 

 

3rd Place – Garrett GTI 2500

3rd Place

Garrett Metal Detector GTI 2500Buy

I have put the Garrett GTI 2500 in 3rd place for the Expert range of metal detectors. Quite simply I have found that it just isn’t quite as good or as usable as the other 2 models mentions in the category. Now I should state that I do have a preference for Minelab metal detectors, however, if Garrett detectors float your boat then you can’t go too far wrong with this one. It is essentially a top of the line model and it features pretty much everything you could want.

The GTI 2500 doesn’t come cheap at around $1,000 for one of these you will want to be sure you are serious about your detecting.

 

Garrett GTI 2500 Video

This video is the official Garrett GTI 2500 video. It is a great introductory video to help you understand the ins and outs of the GTI 2500.

Garrett GTI 2500 Features:

  • 24 Target ID Cursor Segments
  • Iron Discrimination
  • Accept/Reject Discrimination
  • 5 Search Modes
  • 24 Sensitivity/Depth Adjustments
  • Electronic Pinpointing
  • 7.2 kHz Frequency (user adjustable)
  • 3 Audio Tone ID Levels
  • 9.5″ Standard Searchcoil
  • 40″ to 51″ (1.01m – 1.29m) Length (Adjustable)
  • 4.6 lbs. (2.1 kgs.) Total Weight
  • 8 AA Batteries  (included)
  • Battery Condition Indicator
  • 2 Year, Limited Parts/Labor Warranty

 

 

Ultimate Metal Detectors

I am only listing 2 metal detectors in this category as in my opinion there is only really 2 top of the line models out there. Be prepared to fork out some serious cash if you want to own either one of these bad boys though, they really are the best of the best metal detectors.

1st Place – Garrett ATX

Garrett ATX Metal DetectorBuy

Before the Garrett ATX was released I was hands down a Minelab person – there just wasn’t any other detectors out there that were as good at finding precious metals (in particular gold) as Minelab. However, Garrett have something VERY special here, this metal detector is AMAZING! It can find gold with just the flick of a button. It doesn’t matter if the gold is big or small and it can even consistently find gold at depths you wouldn’t think possible.

This detector is so good, that my own independent tests clearly showed that the stock ATX outperformed the stock Minelab GPX5000 on almost every test I conducted. Not only that, but it is about half the price of the GPX 5000!

 

Garrett ATX Video

If you don’t believe me just how good this detector is at finding gold, then check this video out that pits the ATX against the GPX5000. It is just as conclusive as my own testing.

Here is a video by Kellyco, which runs you through some of the features of the ATX.

Garrett ATX Features:

  • 730 pulses per second Detection Frequency
  • Includes the standard 10″ x 12″ PROformance DD coil
  • 13 Sensitivity/Depth Adjustments
  • All Terrain (Great in water – 10 feet (3m) )
  • Advanced Ground Balance
  • Fully Collapsible
  • Quick Iron Check feature and adjustable Discrimination (25 settings)
  • Motion and Non-Motion search modes
  • LED Indicators
  • Ground Track with 4 settings
  • Frequency Scan
  • Advanced Pulse Induction Circuit Type
  • Length: 20″ to 68″ (.51m – 1.72m)
  • Weight: 6.9 lbs. (3.13 kgs) includes batteries
  • Batteries: 8 AA (included); rechargeable batteries and charger also included
  • Warranty: 2 Year, Limited Parts/Labor

2nd Place – Minelab GPX 5000 Metal Detector

Minelab GPX5000 Metal DetectorBuy

Prior to the Garrett ATX I would have said that this detector is in a league of its own – and it was. The benefit that the Minelab GPX 5000 has over the ATX is that I have found that it is more reliable at detecting metal when the ground is undisturbed and the ground is hot and hard.

Where the Minelab really shines is when you want to change your coil. This is very cheap to do with the Minelab when compared the to Garrett and they have great coils like the mono, which will find pretty much anything.

I have 2 major negatives with this detector. The first is the price tag. At around $5000+ this metal detector is seriously expensive. The second is that this detector is not waterproof! I know, you spend that kind of money and you can’t even take it into the water… Common Minelab get your finger out.

 

Minelab GPX5000 Video

The following a a video that gives a basic overview of what the GPX 5000 is capable of.

 

This video talks about the settings required for the Minelab GPX 5000 if you want to go Gold hunting.

Minelab GPX 5000 Features:

  • MPS, DVT & SETA Technology
  • Fine Gold Timing
  • Salt/Gold Timing
  • Coin/Relic Timing
  • 6 preset Search Modes
  • Automatic Ground balance
  • Iron Reject
  • Motion control
  • Backlight LCD Screen
  • Lightweight Li-ion Battery
  • 2 coils as standard: 11” Double-D coil plus an 11” Monoloop coil
  • Length: 1100mm (43.3”) à 1300mm (51.2”).
  • Weight: 2.4kg (5.3lbs) including 11” coil (excluding battery and accessories). Battery weight 780g (1.7lbs).
  • Warranty: 3 years control box & coil.

 

 

Thank you

Thanks for taking the time to make it all the way to the bottom of this page :) I hope you liked my selections and that it has helped you to make the correct decision for your metal detecting needs. If you think I have made a mistake or omitted a great detector – please send me an email.