Hunting for metals in beaches can be very productive due to the numerous metals that get washed ashore. You have sunk ships from the 16th century loaded with gold coins that soon find their way to your favorite beach. However, the beach is highly mineralized, and you may find yourself frustrated, catching old tins and insignificant metal objects.
Beach hunting requires a coil that is waterproof and submersible to a certain depth. You also need to identify the right coil; larger coils cover more surface areas but are poor at pinpointing. This is where small coils have an advantage.
The biggest challenge with prospecting in salty water is that it has a very high salt content that results in your metal detector identifying many false signals. In this instance, you need a device that is good with discrimination. A metal detector with an automatic ground balance setting would be perfect, but they tend to be pricier.
This review is your guide to the best beach metal detectors. We will examine some of the top metal detectors to get your beach hunting started. Read on.
Choosing The Best Beach Metal Detector
Beach hunts are complicated due to the highly mineralized salty water. This means your device will constantly be detecting false signals. However, the expansive beach spaces offer fertile ground for discovering some awesome relics, gold nuggets, or lost treasure that is washed ashore.
Dry sands also offer perfect opportunities to test your device. For one, they are not as mineralized as the salty beaches. If you are going to the beach with a beginner metal detector, then it’s going to be frustrating finding something valuable. Beach metal detectors are configured to accommodate the sandy terrain. Here are some features you should be on the lookout for when choosing the best beach metal detector.
Automatic and manual ground balance
If you are going to try out any of the entry-level metal detectors for your beach hunts, then you are going to be frustrated. Firstly, the beach is laden with many metallic objects. Then the salty water is highly mineralized. To mitigate this, the beach metal detectors will come with automatic and manual ground balance settings. This allows your device to ignore irrelevant targets while focusing on high-value targets. The problem is such devices are pricier than standard metal detectors. But, they are worth the time you save prospecting for valuable items.
This is another great feature you should be on the lookout for; with PI abilities, your device is able to ignore the ground minerals hence allowing you to focus only on valuable targets. They also offer great sensitivity in searching for small targets. The problem with the PI indicators is that they are complicated to use. To solve this problem, you will notice that serious metal finders will often carry two devices – PI and VLF indicators.
You can find a variety of items on the beach – from gold nuggets, relics to jewelry. To improve your odds of finding something valuable, then it is prudent to identify a device that has multi-frequency capabilities. With the device, you can use it for prospecting in both dry grounds and salty waters.
There is a difference between a device that is waterproof, and one is water-resistant. When a device is water-resistant, it means it will handle well under rainy conditions. The device can also handle regular splashes without destruction. But, a device is waterproof; it means you can submerge it into the water without destruction. Beach metal detectors will have an indication of how deep you can submit the coil. For the best beach metal detector, get one that is fully submersible. This will allows you to prospect metals well hidden on the seafloor.
Once you have identified the right, fully submersible coil, you then need to consider the size of the coil. It is not always the case that the larger the coil, the better it is. Small coils are effective at detecting highly sensitive targets. They also offer the best pinpointing abilities. If you are prospecting in an area with lots of trash, then go with a metal detector with a small coil. The larger coils are great for providing more depth. However, they make the device heavier and pose challenges swinging. Some devices like the Whites TDI Beach Hunter Extreme come with dual coils – one small other large.
You will also need to carry with you some accessories to make your beach prospecting effective. One essential item you need to carry along is a sand scoop. This helps you extract the sand when searching for items. For rocky areas, identify a scoop with a pointed edge. You may also need a good pair of waterproof headphones. Beaches can be noisy with seagulls constantly increasing the chatter from your metal detector.
When you have a pair of headphones, you can filter out the noise. You can also detect small signals from items like gold. Remember to get yourself waterproof headphones. Lastly, get yourself a pinpointer. Objects in the sea are under constant movement due to rising and falling tides. This means you may detect an object only for it to disappear minutes later. With a pinpointer, you can know where an object is.
The 6 Best Metal Detectors For Beaches
1. Garrett AT PRO Metal Detector
The Garrett is an all-terrain device that improves your odds of finding something valuable in the deep salty waters. To handle the harsh salty water conditions, it comes armed with an 8.5” X 11” DD submersible Proformance search coil.
The Garrett AT PRO is waterproof to the depths of up to 3 meters/10 feet. With the innovative Garrett Pro-Pointer, you are able to distinguish between the various metals underwater. The Garrett operates at a frequency of 15 kHz and offers excellent manual/automatic ground balancing settings. With the feature, you can separate the relics from the trash with ease. In addition, the device comes with a coin depth indicator that allows you to approximate how deep you will dig.
Garrett AT PRO comes with fast recovery time, and this allows you to get on prospecting for cool stuff. Prospecting in beaches is challenging as you having moving tides that can easily move your target around. To mitigate this, the Garrett comes with an orange waterproof pinpointer called the Garrett carrot. This helps you identify your target before it slips from your viewpoint.
The pinpointer is quite revolutionary as it comes with three adjustable manual sensitivity modes. Weighting 6.5 oz, it allows you to detect objects that buried deep into the ground for up to 10 feet. The
AT Pro requires 4 AA batteries to power it up and measures 21.3 X 14.4 X 8.7 inches. At a modest 3.03lbs, this is the perfect device for finding some useful relics in sandy beaches.
What we liked:
- Superb 8.5” X 11” DD submersible waterproof search coil
- Can find items to a depth of 10 feet
- Awesome sensitivity
- You can try out the device in all terrains
- Garrett carrot innovative pinpointer
2. XP DEUS Metal Detector
This is the perfect device for all terrains. The XP Deus comes with a host of features that make it quite accommodative for expert metal hunts. The design is revolutionary, and you get wireless headphones and a controller. Your prospecting is delivered through an 11” X 35 DD wireless search coil. You can even operate the device through a remote control that you can store on your hip.
When it comes to frequencies, you get a total of 35. This allows you to prospect for a variety of metallic objects. The frequencies are categorized into five main subsets – 3.7 to 44 kHz, 7.1 to 8.4 kHz, 10.5 to 12.4 kHz, 15.2 kHz to 17. 8 kHz, and 23.5 to 27.7 kHz. In highly mineralized areas like salty beaches, you get a lot of interference, and the high frequencies will come in handy for the detection of small targets or low conductive ones.
The reason the XP Deus makes it on our list for both the best metal detectors for beaches and experts is due to its versatility. It can be used for a variety of terrain. Whether you plan to do some treasure hunts along the beach or in some at an abandoned land, the XP Deus delivers.
When it comes to ground balance, the XP Deus offers four modes. The control box is very modern and sleek; you can even download software updates from the company. When you are prospecting in the sandy beaches, all you have to do is set the control box to “pre-set wet beach.” You also get a set of awesome features like iron mode, audio response, notch, multi-tone, ground balance, extended discrimination mode, motion & non-motion, and a host of various company pre-configured modes.
The XP Deus is lightweight at 2lbs. Included in the purchase are X Deus specially designed wireless headphones, coil cover, hip mount for remote control, and a five-year warranty.
What we liked:
- Handles multiple frequencies both high and low
- Four ground balance setting modes
- Can handle a variety of terrains
- Comes with a variety of company pre-configured modes
3. Garrett ATX Deepseeker Package
The Deepseeker is specially designed for prospecting in sandy beaches. Firstly, it comes with an 11” X 13” DD coil that improves your odds of finding something valuable. With the Deepseeker, you do not need to worry about switching modes; all you have to do is select the setting that most suits your terrain.
The first thing you notice about the Deepseeker is its sleek design. Once you power it on, you realize it loaded with various high-end features. The speaker is waterproof, so you do not have to worry about destruction from water splashes. Then you have LED indicators that show you information about current settings and signal strength.
Salty water is highly mineralized, which means you are going to experience many false signals. To mitigate this, the Deepseeker comes with advanced ground balance. This gives a wide range without the user necessarily having to switch to any of the special modes. You also benefit from motion and non-motion mode, and this helps you explore various terrains with ease. Also, the Deepseeker comes with an adjustable discrimination mode and an iron check feature.
If you are planning to do some hunting along your beach, then the Deepseeker is your tool of choice. The huge 20” search coil does an amazing job of sorting out targets and can be submersible to a depth of up to 10 feet. While it is not recommended to use the device for surfing the Deepseeker does an amazing job of finding targets during waves. The downsides are that the Deepseeker at 5.5lbs is heavier than most metal detectors in the market; it’s also expensive, but you get value for money.
What we liked:
- You can detect objects up to 18 inches deep
- Comes with advanced ground balance
- Large search coil that enhances the probability of finds
- Adjustable discrimination and iron check feature
4. Fisher 1280X Metal Detector
If you are planning on doing some metal hunts in salty water, then the Fisher is the perfect choice. What made it stand out from other metal detectors in its class is that it is fully submersible to a depth of 250 feet. It is the ideal device for divers looking for some buried treasure deep in the sea. You can also use it in freshwaters to identify lost jewelry or coins.
During purchase, you have the option of either an 8” or 10” coil. The device operates at a frequency of 2.4 kHz, and you get up to 75 hours of battery life. The Fisher 1280X is very simple to operate with easy to understand dials. You can even remove the control box and fix it on your hip if you desire. Once you power it on, it will automatically readjust itself to its surroundings, and all you have to do is pick up the signals. Pretty simple and straightforward!
The simplistic design comes in handy when you are battling ocean tidal waves as you do not have to fidget with the controls. You can adjust the discrimination, sensitivity, and volume with relative ease even when sea diving. To ensure your odds of finding something valuable, it is recommended that you turn your VLF to 3 and sensitivity to 8.
You will need 8 AA batteries to power up the Fisher. At 5.8lbs, the device is heavier than most beginner metal detectors, so you will need to get used to carrying it. The Fisher 1280X measures 12 X 6 X 21 inches.
What we liked:
- Submersible to up to 250 feet
- Detachable control box
- Simple control dials
- Manual and automatic tuning
- Adjustable sensitivity control
5. Garrett Sea Hunter MK II
This is the ideal metal detector for deep-sea treasure hunts. The device comes with waterproof headphones so you can hear signals even when underwater. It is submersible to a depth of up to 200 feet, which is adequate for discovering some lost relics or jewelry.
One of the frustrating things about deep-sea treasure hunts is that the ocean floor is littered with trash. If you have a cheap metal detector, you may find yourself wasting time with trashcans, bottle caps, and oil nails coming up on your dials. The Garrett sea hunter has mitigated this by having a knob that can be set to standard or discrete trash elimination. With the feature, you can sort out unwanted items from your menu.
In addition to the features, you also get non-motion all-metal mode and detection threshold setting. While the user interface of the sea hunter looks outdated, it has all you need to find some valuable items. The device is not just relegated to deep-sea dives; you can use it along the beach for valuable treasure.
Overall, the Garrett sea hunter is a great device for sea dives and beach searches. However, the device is heavy at 5.75lbs, meaning you will get tired if you are searching for long periods.
What we liked:
- Standard and discrete trash elimination
- Detection threshold settings
- Ability to detect items at over 200 feet
- Simple and easy to use dials
6. Whites TDI BeachHunter Extreme Pulse Induction Waterproof Metal Detector
At first glance, the White TDI looks very complicated. But, once you get used to the dials, you will find searching for items a breeze. Looking for targets is through a 12” dual field search coil. The device is waterproof to a depth of 25ft and is powered by 8 AA batteries.
What makes the whites TDI outstanding is its list of innovative features. Firstly, the search coil is very different as it combines two coils. You have a large coil that works well in highly mineralized water as it is able to deep dig into salty waters. Then you have a smaller coil that is highly sensitive for detecting small targets. You can use the dual-tone audio to differentiate various targets. With an adjustable threshold and volume control, you can change settings to suit your unique preferences. Other cool features we noticed in the Whites TDI hunter include optimization for gold, adjustable frequency offset, chest/hip mount, and manual ground balance.
The whites TDI beach hunter also features an adjustable pulse delay setting. This feature comes into play when you are searching for extremely small targets. The whites TDI performs extremely well for beach hunts, but you may have to take a step back inland hunts. This is because the white TDI lacks a serious digital target ID. This may lead you to waste time collecting lots of trash.
We loved how the Whites TDI beach hunter performs in extremely harsh beach conditions. The controls were easy to use, but at 5.2lbs, it is a bit heavy.
What we liked:
- The dual coil that combines a small and large coil
- Waterproof to a depth of 25 ft
- Manual ground balance
- Dual-tone audio
- Great device for salty water hunts
Concluding our Beach Metal Detector Guide
Beach metal prospecting is fun as you get to enjoy expansive open spaces while getting a taste of fresh air. However, due to the nature of the highly mineralized salty water, your chances of finding something valuable are greatly reduced. You may also be forced to go prospecting in deeper waters if you are to find something worth your pursuit. The best beach detectors come with features like a manual or automatic ground balancing, pulse indicators, submersible coils, and multi-frequency. This allows the devices to discriminate against trash.