“Which gold detector machine is the best metal detector for me?” That’s a question I’m asked quite frequently. My answer is always the same. There are at least a dozen top-notch gold detectors from different manufacturers that outperform the others. I’ve listed a few below. But before you choose one. Be sure you understand that your choice of a gold metal detector will be based on what kind of prospecting you will be doing.
As long as you know what type of gold you’re looking for, and where you are searching, then making the choice of which detector becomes easier.
Searching for a large amount of buried gold, or bullion, vs. prospecting for smaller nuggets and placer gold, means that your detector choice should be different.
For gold bullion searching or a buried gold cache, the Garrett ATX (link) is the best choice. If you are prospecting for small nuggets or placer gold, then the following detectors are highly recommended. They are listed from the more sophisticated detectors, down to the most basic.
Garrett AT MAX
XP Deuce and their GoldField program
Tesoro Lobo SuperTRAQ
Garrett AT Gold
Whites Goldmaster GMT
It really makes no difference whether you have been detecting and searching for gold for years, or you’re buying your first gold machine because you’re a newbie to the hobby. The best metal detector for gold is really the one you understand. That means, how well do you know how it performs. Using and understanding how your gold detector operates is no different than understanding how any detector works. I’ve watched gold prospectors use the most advanced gold detector, and they never found a trace of gold. Yet in the same area, I’ve watched a newbie with a less expensive gold detector, find the tiniest of nuggets. Why? It was because the newbie understood the nuances of his detector, whereby the experienced pro with the high tech gold detector was not familiar with how it worked. In addition, you need to purchase the right type of detector for your gold hunting.
Gold detector machines are either VLF types, which means they are high frequency and are sensitive to gold or the Pulse induction circuits, which means they are less sensitive to gold due to being a lower frequency.
If you’re searching for small gold then you’ll need a metal detector that has a higher the operating frequency. That’s because it’s more sensitive to small gold. However, the higher the frequency also means the detector is more sensitive to iron. So if you’re searching in an area that has high iron mineralization then you may pick up many false, or ghost signals as well.
If you’re concerned about the iron minerals in the area you’re searching, then a lower frequency detector is your best option. They operate more efficiently in high iron areas.
Most are a manual ground balance. This feature allows you to filter out any iron that is in the ground. This becomes easy to do once you learn how.
Automatic ground balance features are usually found on the higher end models.
There are two types of coils used with gold detector machines. The concentric, and the wide scan. If you’re concerned about discriminating various metals then the concentric coil fit’s the bill. The widescan coils allow you to search a larger area at one time. It also is most often used for deeper targets or for larger nuggets.
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