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  • Garrett ACE 300

  • Fisher Research Labs F22

  • Garrett AT Pro

  • XP Deus RCWS5

  • Minelab Vanquish 540

Product image of Garrett ACE 300
Garrett ACE 300

This reasonably priced metal detector from Garrett offers five search modes, depth adjustments, and a good balance of beginner-friendly controls and advanced performance. Its search coil is submersible, so you can safely hunt in the water, and it’s got a range of up to eight inches. It measures for copper, silver, and gold levels, and it comes with a pair of Garrett ClearSound headphones. It’s a popular choice among Amazon shoppers, with hundreds of rave reviews.

Pros

  • Five search modes and depth adjustments

  • Can detect treasure up to 8 inches deep

  • Includes ClearSound headphones

Cons

  • Requires some fine-tuning

Product image of Fisher Research Labs F22
Fisher Research Labs F22

This affordable Fisher offers weatherproofing, 25 to 30 hours of battery life (on a pair of AAs), and some useful features. It has modes for jewelry, coins, artifacts, and customizability, and will let you know when it’s found iron. The search coil is submersible, and it’s extra lightweight at just over two pounds. Reviewers found that it didn’t work well on wet beaches, and it can be a little tricky to dial in what you’re looking for, but most users were thrilled with the value here.

Pros

  • Waterproof search coil and lightweight body

  • Modes for jewelry, coin, artifacts, and more

  • Up to 30 hours of battery life

Cons

  • Not ideal for certain metals and settings

Product image of Garrett AT Pro
Garrett AT Pro

At $599, the Garrett AT Pro is a midrange model from one of the most trusted brands in metal detection. It comes with a pinpointer, a digger tool, and headphones, giving you everything you need to get serious about your new hobby in one handy package. Reviewers have praised its accuracy, the flexible yet intuitive controls, and the beginner-friendly present modes. It runs on four AA batteries, and its all-black design looks fantastic.

Pros

  • Flexible yet intuitive controls

  • Beginner-friendly presets

  • Impressive accuracy

Cons

  • None that we could find

Product image of XP Deus RCWS5
XP Deus RCWS5

The XP Deus comes with a waterproof coil, flexible controls, and a five-year warranty, offering high-end performance in a sleek, simple package. “This is the one to get,” one reviewer wrote. “It gives you a ton of useful information before you decide to dig.” The Deus comes with a remote control, a hip-mount case for the remote, and full-sized wireless headphones. It’s got a variety of detection modes with a high degree of sensitivity (across 35 frequencies).

Pros

  • Variety of high-sensitivity detection modes

  • Waterproof coil and five-year warranty

  • Superb quality and performance

Cons

  • None that we could find

Product image of Minelab Vanquish 540
Minelab Vanquish 540

Another mid-priced model, the Minelab Vanquish 540 is fully adjustable, collapsible, lightweight, and comes with everything you need to dive into your new treasure-hunting hobby. It’s got a pair of wired headphones, a pinpointer, and other accessories, and the coil is waterproof—though you’ll probably want to stay out of heavy rain. “I was amazed,” one user wrote of “its ability to ID different metals.” It offers three modes tailored for jewelry, coins, and “relics.”

Pros

  • Can detect treasure up to 10 inches deep

  • Adjustable, collapsible, and lightweight

  • Presents for coins, jewelry, and relics

Cons

  • May have a learning curve

Meet the tester

Alex Kane

Alex Kane

Editor, Search & Updates

@alexjkane

Alex Kane is an editor at USA Today’s Reviewed.

See all of Alex Kane's reviews

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