There is no age, background, or gender requirement for one to become a metal detectorist. All you need is the best metal detector for the money. And luckily enough that you have us. Below are the top 7 best options that we’ve compiled from the market:
- Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV – Best overall
- ToolGuards 2019 Model Metal Detector – Budget-friendly
- Garrett Ace 300 GAR1141150 – Best for coins and jewelry
- Fisher F22 – Best for beginners
- NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PRO Series – Best for kids
- Garrett Ace 250 – Best for beach hunting
- Minelab EQUINOX 800 – Best for gold prospecting
Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV – Best overall
- Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker IV Metal Detector
- Bounter Hunter CBAG-W Bounty Carry Bag
- Bounty Hunter HEAD-PL Metal Detector Headphones
- Be a good performer at all terrains, even in high mineralized ground
- Can detect small targets at 3 feet of depth – higher than the average of metal detectors’ detection range
- Be shipped in Certified Frustration-Free Packaging to arrive in the best condition in front of your door
- The audio mode provides only 2 tones – a bit less to distinguish different kinds of metal
- Bounty Hunter TK4 has been a favorite pick of many people all around the country
This waterproof coil also allows you to detect large targets at 8 inches deep and smaller ones at 3 feet depth.
Thanks to the 3 operating modes that include a 2-tone audio mode and discrimination mode, you can find what you’re trying to find without misleading junk objects. You don’t need to always look at the screen all the time either.
The unit, in addition, provides a ¼-inch headphone jack to keep you stay focus on the tasks at hand in loud places or otherwise in crowded as well as a built-in speaker.
|Operating Frequency||6.7 kHz|
|Audio Frequencies||2 tones|
|Search Modes||3 – Motion All-Metal mode, Discrimination mode, and 2-Tone audio mode|
|Search Coil Size||8 inches|
|Highlight Features||Rugged metal detector, larger objects up to 3 feet, preset ground balance neutralizes response to mineral content in the ground, Disc/notch control|
The rugged TK4 Tracker IV metal detector is perfect for detecting metals in any terrains, even the high mineralization – something that other brands usually struggle with.
ToolGuards 2019 Model Metal Detector – Budget-friendly
- ❗CAUTION: INSERT MICRO-PLUG ACCORDING TO THE ALIGNMENT! An incorrect connection can occur in very low or no signal❗💰LET YOUR TREASURE HUNTS BEGIN…. Are you ready for an adventure of a lifetime? Now you can start enjoying the thrill of finding artifacts like old coins, gold, tools, jewelry, and more with our premium ToolGuards Metal Detector!
- ✅ ENJOY SEARCHING ON LAND & WATER! Now you can enjoy your treasure hunting in the water too! We created our deluxe metal detector kit with a waterproof coil and carrying bag, so you can uncover the mysteries on all terrain!
- ✅ NEWEST 2019 MODEL - GREAT FOR ALL AGES: Metal detecting is a great hobby for men, women, and children of all ages! Our easy-to-use and extremely durable Metal Detector includes an adjustable knob to match your height and preference!
- ✅ FEEL CONNECTED TO THE PAST— Do you love finding buried treasures in the Earth and wondering about the stories of who left them behind? That feeling of excitement is priceless!
- The most affordable metal detector (in this list) with no compromise of quality or performance
- Don’t eat batteries’ life as quickly as the LCD would do
- Durable and easy to use -> suit for adults and kids
- Can’t distinguish a quarter and a nickel
- The instructions don’t show how to find different kinds of metals
My guess is, as there is no LCD display screen in this model and the metal detector itself features minimal settings, it helps to save some precious extra bucks on your hands.
Meanwhile, you can be at ease of battery life drainage as quick as the LCD would.
Compared to the initial versions, the newest 2019 model is designed to be more durable and easier to use, hence, it suits both adults and children.
While the machine comes in a bit heavier weight than the TK4 Tracker IV, it is built to detect on various terrains – either that’s on ground or water.
|Operating Frequency||5.5 kHz|
|Search Modes||3 – All, Target, or Disc|
|Search Coil Size||9.8 inches|
|Highlight Features||Used on all-terrain, great for all ages and metals|
At under $70 price point and featuring many quality features, the ToolGuards 2019 Model Metal Detector is an unbeatable option for budget-minded people.
Garrett Ace 300 GAR1141150 – Best for coins and jewelry
- Garrett ACE 300 Metal Detector with submersible Searchcoil
- Includes 3 FREE Accessories:
- Volume control Garrett ClearSound Easy Stow headphones
- ACE Environmental Coverup
- Give 5 search modes to give you more freedom to use it in the way you want
- Offer many higher-end features than the previous versions while keeping a modest price
- Have the electronic pinpointing mode to show you the precise location of the targets
- The DD coils and digital technology application can’t distinguish between valuable metals and bottle tabs
- The Ace 300 is so to say a quality upgrade of the Ace 250, highlighting some advanced features
It also inherits a few strengths from the previous siblings, such as the 5 search modes and the electronic pinpointing to offer a more accurate location.
According to that, this is best for professionals detecting jewelry and coins.
|Operating Frequency||8 kHz|
|Audio Frequencies||3 tones|
|Search Coil Size||7″ x 10″|
|Highlight Features||Pulse-width modulation, electronic pinpointing, five search modes, eight sensitivity, depth adjustments, coin depth indicator, digital target ID.|
For advanced treasure hunters who are looking for an upgrade for their search game, this Garrett will be the best for coins and jewelry detecting, sure.
Fisher F22 – Best for beginners
- Weatherproof all-purpose metal detector
- Visual target-id by category
- Operates on 2 aa batteries (25-30 hours)
- The control box is water-resistant to stay durable in some harsh conditions
- Can discriminate between non-important objects and valuable metals to avoid false alarms
- Offer a good warranty – a 5-year warranty to ensure the best satisfaction of your purchase
- Can’t protect the control box when it’s submerged in the water
The Iron Audio is a practical feature that can tell valuable metals – jewelry, coins, and artifacts – apart from soda tabs or trash. It synonymously gives you more time to dig valuable metals – like, coins, jewelry or artifacts – and less time digging trash.
The weather-proof feature, on the other hand, helps to keep the coil waterproof and the control box rain-resistant.
It also has 10 adjustable sensitivity levels and a 9-inch depth of metal detecting.
|Operating Frequency||7.69 kHz|
|Audio Frequencies||4 tones|
|Search Modes||4 – Jewelry, Coin, Artifact, Custom|
|Search Coil Size||7 inches Concentric Elliptical Searchcoil|
11” DD Elliptical Open Searchcoil
11” Triangulated ConcentricElliptical Searchcoil
|Highlight Features||Features pinpoint mode, 10 adjustable sensitivity levels, Weather resistant, detects metals up to 9 in. deep|
Overall, this entry-level metal detector is valuable for the money, it is user-friendly to suit beginner while having some features that you hardly find on other brands at this price point.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC PRO Series – Best for kids
- FIND BURIED TREASURE and feel the thrill of discovery when you locate cool artifacts like Gold, Coins, Jewelry, Tools and more!
- EASY TO USE for all ages, sizes and skill levels from beginner to advanced. Just unfold and go.
- COMPACT, LARGE WATERPROOF 10" COIL, LIGHTWEIGHT and collapses to just 22 inches and 2 lbs. Great for travel!
- PACKED WITH PRO FEATURES including 3 detection modes, 4 sensitivity levels and a pinpoint location feature to help you distinguish trash from treasure as deep as 12 inches
- Lightweight and compact to fit average kids’ height and not make their arms or shoulders fatigue when using it
- Can find treasures as deep as 12 inches
- Have a pinpoint mode to locate precisely the metals underground -> the digging will be more accurate and effortless
- Make the fabric at the user’s arms wear out quickly
- Sometimes, it misleads between a dime and junk items
The machine also offers 3 detection modes, including pinpoint detecting to let detectorists locate precisely and find different valuable kinds of metals. Such as cool artifacts, coins, tools, and jewelry.
There are 4 sensitivity levels and a waterproof coil – enough for kids to detect treasures at as deep as 12” on different terrains, whether it’s on the beach, shallow lakes, or ground.
|Operating Frequency||7.11 kHz|
|Search Coil Size||10 inches|
|Highlight Features||Lightweight, simple operation, 3 detection modes, find things as deep as 12 inches underground|
If your kids love detecting things, why not help them make a further step to get into this hobby? This lightweight and simple-setting metal detection is the best gear to start with.
Garrett Ace 250 – Best for beach hunting
- The panel isn’t “fiddly” to utilize in the field
- The controls are easier to reach
- Provide many advanced features compared to the inexpensive price tag
- Can’t handle soil with high mineralization levels
- Not sensitive enough to prospect gold
- The design looks a bit cheap
While giving a budget-friendly price tag, the machine has some features that only the higher-ends provide. For example, its panel isn’t “fiddly” to utilize in the field and the controls are easier to reach.
It, in addition, features an LCD screen, 12-segment graphical target display, 5 five operating modes that include a pinpointing detecting function and Accept/Reject notch.
Explicitly, the machine packs a punch compared to its inexpensive price point.
|Operating Frequency||6.5 kHz|
|Search Coil Size||6.5 inches|
|Highlight Features||Easy to tune and easy to use, recommended for beginners as well as “old pro’s”, Accept/Reject notch, electronic pinpoint for easy target recovery|
For beginners who want an ergonomic metal detector for daily use at the beach without getting arm fatigue, Garrett Ace 250 makes it the best candidate.
Minelab EQUINOX 800 – Best for gold prospecting
- Total Weight: 2. 96 lbs (1. 34 kgs) 8 Custom Search Profiles: Each Detect Mode Features 2 Custom Search Profiles so you can Save your Favorite Settings in Each Mode : 3 Year Limited for Detector, 1 Year for Battery Operating Frequencies: Multi, 5kHz, 10kHz, 15kHz, 20kHz, 40kHz Fast & Accurate Target ID: Fast Recovery Speed with Accurate Target ID
- Simultaneous Multi-Frequency For Maximum Performance, Plus a Wide Range of Single Frequencies Get Even More Control of your Audio with Advanced Settings; You Decide How Much Target Info you Hear Wireless Audio Compatible with Ultra-Fast Wireless Audio with the WM 08, and Fast aptX Low Latency / Bluetooth Headphones
- Gold detecting mode: operates the high single frequencies of 20 kHz, 40 kHz or multi to detect gold nuggets in mineralized soils
- Waterproof design: Equinox is fully submersible, ideal for detecting at the beach and in rivers, streams and lakes (3M/ 10-feet)
- Include the gold detecting mode for gold prospecting (in 4” to 6” deep)
- Give 50 audio tones and multifrequency operation to give more sensitivity on small targets and depth on larger treasures without watching the screen all the time
- Bluetooth headphones for neater and more convenient usage
- Responsive target ID - quickly distinguish between the trash and the targets
- Give a significantly higher price than other counterparts in this list
Never before had such that many advanced featured integrated into a lightweight and affordable machine
This is the very first metal detector in this list featuring multifrequency operation, a gold detecting mode, and 50 audio tones. Besides, the machine is designed to be submersible fully and deliver Bluetooth headphones, using high-speed wireless audio with the WM 08.
Gold nuggets are also allowed saving your favorite settings in each of 2 custom Search Profiles of the unit. The accurate and responsive target ID, on the other hand, helps you discriminate between the trash and your targets with high precision.
|Operating Frequency||Multi, 5kHz, 10kHz, 15kHz, 20kHz, 40kHz|
|Search Coil Size||11 inches|
|Highlight Features||Find gold nuggets in the 4″ – 6″ range, Gold Detecting Mode|
All-in-all, if you are a serious gold nugget, don’t ever dismiss this Minelab Equinox metal detector.
How to choose the best metal detector for the money (buying guide)
Your hunting grounds
The determination of what to do with a metal detector makes it more time-saving when you’re finding the best metal detector for the money. They include the following:
- Where do you want to detect metals?
- How often do you hunt for treasures?
- What is your hunting type?
Key features to look for
A universal metal detector is the best bet for the hobbyists and beginners. They can detect, in general, all kinds of metals at a certain depth range, such as bronze, copper, tin, brass, nickel, lead, iron, and aluminum.
These entry-level models usually offer a single operating frequency within 5 kHz to 10 kHz.
But the higher-end machines, like for serious gold nuggets or professional detectorists, will deliver more options. The Minelab Equinox 800 on our list is a shining example of that. It comes with a multifrequency operation, including 5kHz, 10kHz, 15kHz, 20kHz, and 40kHz.
Complicated metal detectors like that deliver higher sensitivity levels to find small targets as well as more depth on bigger ones.
This is an awesome feature that helps to distinguish between the targets and the non-important objects. It saves you from digging up soda tabs and bottle caps with no single real find.
The more advanced the metal detector, the more additional search coil sizes offered. As a basic rule of thumb, small coins give better maneuverability and greater target discrimination while the bigger ones are ideal for covering larger searching areas.
When considering this feature, ensure the stock search coil of your machine suits for basic detecting.
It’s not a must for beginners to find a complicated metal detector at first because they won’t understand intensively how to use all the provided functions. Instead, a simple-setting option is a better choice to afford and keep up their enthusiasm.
3-mode detectors are a good go-to for kids and novice treasure hunters while the 4-mode to 6-mode is perfect for the professionals.
Who makes the best metal detector for the money?
Established in 1931, Fisherlab has become the most trusted name in the metal detector industry. With other 85 years’ expertise in this field, their products bold unbeatable performance with versatile applications to fit both all detectorists.
The brand was founded by Garrett and Charles, in 1964 and has since been the OG in the detecting world. New customers should be alert that all Garrett detectors are virtually made in the USA, not China or somewhere else.
Aim to produce cost-effective detectors for amateurs to intermediate detectorists make Bounty Hunter quickly becomes one of the most worldwide famous brands.
The best thing is while working hard to deliver only high-quality products, it always tries to offer good warranties and services to ensure the highest satisfaction of their customers.
Despite not a brand specialized in metal detecting, National Geographic has over 130 years igniting their explorers. They are strong in manufacturing user-friendly detectors for kids and beginners.
Last up, is Minelab – the brand, the world leader in offering unbeatable metal detecting technologies for military needs, serious gold nuggets, and humanitarian demining.
Minelab has over 30 years’ experience in this industry, making it the major world manufacturer of handheld detector lines.
Can you make a living with a metal detector?
There are many options to make money from metal detecting, such as:
- Become a YouTuber who exhibits your detecting journeys, sharing experience, and what you’ve found
- Get wise permissions: Some designated parks and beaches require permission and even sharing the treasures’ value that you find, but it’s worth it because you’ll find better targets.
- Offer services to help for underground work: To help people avoid the risks of damaging the underground copper pipes and electrical wires when digging to set up the plumbing.
- Do recoveries (for a fee) what people have lost outdoor on a daily basis
- Underwater metal detecting to help swimmers get back what they’ve lost (normally jewelry) when swimming and usually, you will get high profit from this permission
- Work for museums: You will get a legit metal detector to work in civil war sites or battlefields and receive a certain amount of money for that. Of course, you must be a professional detectorist.
Can metal detectors find gold?
As long as that metal detector is equipped with a gold detecting mode, it can find gold. For example, the Minelab Equinox 800.
Is it legal to use a metal detector on the beach?
It is dependent on the country/state/region where you are going to a metal detector. Each has different rules and stipulations of metal detecting on the beach.
But in general, you’re allowed if detecting metals in the public ground so, try to avoid designated or private beach.
What will set off a metal detector?
Thanks to the application of electromagnetism process, most modern metal detectors can find all kinds of metals, such as bronze, tin, aluminum, brass, silver, gold, nickel, copper, lead, and iron.
Where are the best places to metal detect?
There are several ideal places to start your metal detecting journeys:
- Your front and backyard
- At someone’s yard (with permissions)
- Footpaths and woods
- Public to designated beach and parks
- Bleachers and stadiums
- Deserted towns
How do I overcome interference from other detectors when I am at a rally?
When two metal detectors at the same operating frequency work in close proximity, interference will happen. The only solution for this is getting as far as possible from the others or fitting a “frequency shifter box”
In a nutshell, the 6 first options in our list are the best metal detector for the money of beginners to intermediate detectorists while the last one is perfect for serious treasure hunters.
We hope the included buying guides and other informative pieces of info have been helpful to you. Good luck with your treasure finding journeys!