Garret is a highly reputable brand of metal detectors. However, with their ever-increasing range of products and packages, it can be difficult deciding upon which is the best garret metal detector for you.
Needs vary of course, and the good news is whether your a beginner or a seasoned pro, Garrett knows their customer base and has designed a suitable detector to fit the bill.
In this top 5 review round up we have selected 5 of the best Garret detectors across a range of price points with various features. For our findings at a glance just head to the table below. For an in-depth look at each of the chosen products, keep on reading.
Best Garrett Metal Detector – Top 5
Garrett Ace 400
Garrett AT Pro
Bag, Pouch, Hat,
Garrett ACE 250
Coil and Treasure
Garret Metal Detector Reviews
We have broken the review section down to our top picks in each category. From the best budget option, to what a beginner should look for, as well as the most suitable package for an all-out professional, you will find the right Garret metal detector for your needs below.
1. Garrett Ace 400 Metal Detector inc Waterproof Coil, Headphones/Accessories (Best Metal Detector for Beginners)
In our opinion the Garrett Ace 400 is the pick of the Barrett metal detectors for beginners.
Yes you can opt for either the 200 or 300 series however, the ease of use that the 400 series delivers, along with the superior features built-in makes it an excellent starter option. Furthermore, you will not need to upgrade for a long time if you opt for this detector.
The Garrett ACE 400 is superior to other detectors in the Garrett family in that it offers 10 kHz frequency.
This results in better sensitivity to low and medium conductivity targets. (In laymen’s terms you have a tool that is able to hone in on gold and lead with increased efficiency).
Also, the ACE 400 has a Frequency Adjust feature. This gives the user the ability to toggle between frequency shifts with much greater control. This feature allows you to eliminate interference from other detectors or power sources.
Another great feature is the ability to select from five discrimination modes: Zero Discrimination, Jewellery, Custom, Relic and Coins.
There is also electronic pinpointing for more efficient targeting and High-Resolution Iron Discrimination.
The LCD screen is clear and easy to use even in sunny conditions. This can display helpful information such as battery levels, sensitivity indications, and discrimination modes.
The Garrett Ace 400 metal detector weighs only 2.8 lbs (1.27 kgs) which is very light. The product dimension of 22 x 15 x 6 inches also make the unit easy to wield over long periods of time
Being simple to operate it really is a perfect fit for beginners looking for more functionality than the standard ACE models.
If you are looking for a great metal detector as a beginner, Garrett Ace 400 is one of the best options on the market. While it is more expensive than the 200 series, the added functionality means this is a unit that will remain relevant as your skills develop.
Not only is it easy to pick up and use, it also has some advanced features which means as your skill set grows, your ACE 400 will remain the detector of choice.
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2. Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector Special with Pro Pointer (Best Professional Metal Detector)
The Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector is a top end professional detector with an impressive package of accessories included.
It is a complete kit that has all the essentials that you may need to improve the success of your treasure hunting. It is undoubtedly aimed at professional users and is an easy choice for the top pick in this category.
It is also equipped with some of the most advanced technologies in metal detecting. For example, the fact the model comes with a waterproof Pin Pointer is a real bonus for more testing search environments.
The detector features a proportional audio and tone roll system that allows the user to listen to the target as they would in a True All-Metal Mode. In other words, the characteristics of the material are clearly signaled via the audio emitted.
There’s also a high-res iron discrimination function. Amazingly up to 40 levels of precise discrimination can be selected via the easy to use the touchpad.
There’s also the Digital Target ID. Here the user has access to a zero to 99 Target ID scale. The experienced searcher will be able to hone readings in order to distinguish one target’s conductivity from another.
If that’s not enough, the unit also provides allows the user to hear discriminated iron and offers control over the machine’s mid-tone signal range.
A professional user is going to want to operate the detector in all manner of environments. Here the Garrett Pro really does deliver.
The weatherproof, waterproof housing is designed for dusty, humid and of course wet environments. In fact, the detector can be completely water immersed to a maximum 10-foot depth. Not many machines on the market have this ability at the same price point.
And the list of features continues. There’s also a very useful ground balance option that provides automatic and manual adjustability.
A Graphic Target Analyzer (GTA) is built in to help clearly identify the target’s conductivity in visual terms. The display unit also provides target depth via the Continuous Coin Depth Indicator.
Finally, the battery indicator will ensure that you do not run out of power in the middle of the search.
With all these advanced features, this metal detector is a powerful tool in the right hands. If you are looking for a detector that will take your search results to the next level, this is the one to buy.
In our opinion the Garrett AT Pro is the best professional metal detector on the market today.
3. Garrett Ace 250 Metal Detector with Submersible Search Coil (Best budget Metal Detector)
Are you looking for the best budget Garret metal detector? Then the Garrett Ace 250 is the model to go for. Not only do you get that reliable Garrett build quality, you also get a number of features that go far and beyond what you would expect considering the low price point.
Let’s take a closer look.
First off, the Garret ACE 250 comes with a graphic target ID legend that is clear and easy to read even in harsh conditions.
There are 5 search modes built-in which allows you to select a pre-set discrimination pattern (all metals, jewelry, relics, coins and pinpoint) or create your own via a custom mode.
The electric pinpointing function allows the user to precisely locate targets and essentially help speed up recovery. The inbuilt continuous coin depth indicator will also help guide you on how far you have to dig in order to reach the item of interest.
There is a very useful accept and reject discrimination function that allow you to modify discrimination patterns to your own preferences.
The unit also aids use while out in the field with one-touch push button controls, and a clear battery condition indicator so that only the really negligent will run out of juice without realising.
Overall, this metal detector is built for the budget-minded. It is also very easy to use and hence is suitable for beginners too.
As mentioned above, the entire body is not waterproof, only the coil is. This can be risky when in contact with water. Though on the land, be it any surface, it can work very effectively.
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4. Garrett Ace 200 Metal Detector
Are you still looking for a perfect metal detector with simple interface and easy to use control? Then, the Garret Ace 200 metal detector is worthy of consideration. This is another beginner friendly, budget option from this highly reputable metal detector brand.
Aimed at beginners who wish to try out this wonderful hobby, the 200 will aid in your search to find coins and more without getting bogged down in complicated functionality.
With the help of this metal detector by Garrett, you can get started with minimal operation and control. It is packed with some versatile features too.
With a length of 9 inches along with a width and height of 6.5 inches and 5.1 inches respectively, this metal detector is a lightweight yet efficient device.
You can adjust the modes according to your needs. The modes can easily be changed with a simple to use control button.
As with the other Garrett models reviewed above, the 200 comes with the Digital Target ID, providing a 0 to 99 scale of target data. There’s also the new camlock system built-in for increased stem stability.
For superior audio readings, the unit also has pulse-width modulation. The results in sharper, more responsive audio.
The search for a metal detector with the simplest interface and easy to use control may come to an end with the Garret Ace 200 metal detector.
It comes with features specifically designed for the starter level. If you want to try out metal detecting for the first time with out investing to much money, this is a good option.
5. Garrett Ace 300 Metal Detector
If you are looking for a superior metal detector with some highly useful accessories, then the Garrett Ace 300 Metal Detector is one of the best contenders.
With quality accessories in the kit, this metal detector offers great value for money.
However, the most crucial point that you must consider when buying a detector is the amount of features it has. Whether or not the metal detector is versatile and can solve your purpose entirely depends on the in built functionality.
The Garrett Ace 300 metal detector package comes with some great accessories too.
- Easy stow headphone for clearer sound,
- Search coil cover
- ACE environment cover-up to protect your metal detector
It can easily detect the coins and tell you about the exact location with the help of the electronic pinpointing technology.
You can also adjust the sensitivity to ensure that the metal detector can sense the material you are looking for.
Though made from sturdy and durable materials it is extremely light in weight. The unit is therefore easy on the arms as the user conducts their searches.
Overall, the Garrett Ace 300 metal detector contains some advanced features and technologies.
The sensitivity level can be adjusted according to your needs. Also, it comes with various search modes that you can choose for a specific type of metal detection. It is built with one of the sturdiest and strongest material. Hence it can last for a long time.
If you are looking for something which is easy to use and control yet has some advanced features, and comes in cheaper than the 400 or Pro series, then the 300 could well be the choice for you.
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What to look for when buying a Garrett Metal Detector?
1. Detector Sensitivity
Metal detector sensitivity is one of the most important factors you need to consider before you buy. This is also related to the type of detecting you plan on doing and where.
A Garret detector with high operating frequencies is recommended suitable if you plan on searching for light metal, or material that can be found close to the surface.
Many of the budget options listed above will feature such functionality.
However, if you plan on penetrating deeper into the soil, (and know you will be searching in areas with a denser geological profile) a unit with lower operating frequencies will be required.
As a rule of thumb, if you are looking for precious metals, (gold for instance) you should opt for a Garrett detector with a frequency rate between 6.4kHz and 20kHz.
The video below looks at the kind of frequency settings you can expect with the Garrett Ace 250, (a great, budget option for beginners).
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Of course, the larger budget you have, the more versatile machine you can buy.
A Garrett Pro Metal Detector can be adjusted across a range of frequencies in line with the type of searching you are conducting on any given day.
As a final comment on the issue of frequency; even after you have bought your detector you will need to pay attention to the varying conditions you find yourself in.
Whether it’s the type of material you are searching for, the density and mineral composition of the ground, or power transformers standing nearby, your Garrett detector will need to be adjusted accordingly.
2. Calibration of the detector
You should make sure that the Garrett detector you buy has sufficient ground balance for the type of searching you wish to conduct.
This is otherwise known as calibration and is how the detector differentiates the various metallic minerals found in the soil.
Essentially, detectors with low calibration are more likely to pick up interference from unwanted, irrelevant signals. This, of course, makes the detector less efficient and you will find your self digging for false positives.
The good news is that even the most basic Garratt metal detector models feature good calibration strength.
Furthermore, the levels of ground balance are fully adjustable, giving you the opportunity to change the calibration depending on the soil below.
3. The Shape & Size of the Coil (and aftermarket options)
The coil size and shape is another issue worth considering before you buy your Garrett metal detector.
Some units feature Elliptical coils with a penetrative depth up twelve inches. However, the elliptical shape creates more ground cover meaning you can sweep larger areas quickly.
Double D coils have less penetration, but even more ground cover, making them extremely efficient for shallow searching over wider areas.
All that being said, the standard shape for Garret Detectors is the Concentric coils. These feature 12-inch penetration with adequate clearance for most uses.
Finally, there are Spider coils available, (remember you can buy an aftermarket coil even after you have purchased your detector assuming you opt for a model that features interchangeable coils).
These have a similar range to the concentric models, however, their increased bulk and sturdiness make the appropriate for rougher, overgrown terrain.
4. Discrimination Levels
All Garrett metal detectors feature discrimination (and whichever brand you buy you should ensure that they have it too).
This feature allows you to differentiate between metals, which is clearly a very important part of metal detecting.
The system works because metals produce individual magnetic responses. Your Garret detector will be able to sense these waves and give you appropriate reading; this way you will know what type of metal is being detected before you choose to dig.
The level and range of discrimination between metals do vary, with more expensive Garrett devices having greater versatility.
Again, you will need to decide what kind of functionality you need before you buy.
5. Pinpoint Mode
Your Garrett detector will feature Pinpoint mode however; it is good to know what this is before you buy.
Pinpoint mode automatically aligns the response point of the detector so that it remains in the center of the coil. This helps the detector precisely locate positions of objects beneath the soil.
6. Depth indicator
In association with the above feature, you will also fin the depth indicator.
As you would expect from this, the indicator gives you an idea of how deep the object is and how far you need to dig.
The information for both the location and the depth of the object will be found on the LCD output reader located on the detector control box.
7. Radar Function
Some of the top range, professional metal detectors feature penetrating radar. This can be used to determine the size and density of the material hidden within the ground.
As a beginner it is unlikely that you will need this feature, however, the more experienced you are, the more you will benefit by having radar capability.
A word on Metal Detector Technology
There are in fact a range of technologies available in today’s metal detectors, with different brands opting for different methods in line with the market they are targeting.
The three main types of metal detecting technology are:
- Beat Frequency Oscillation (BFO)
- Very Low Frequency (VLF)
- Pulse Induction (PI)
A closer look at the 3 technologies:
Beat frequency oscillation
This is the simplest and most budget-friendly technology that is mostly found in entry grade inexpensive detectors.
This type of detector will use two coils and an oscillator. This is how the machine creates a standard frequency that is then upset by the presence of metal.
The problem with BFO style detectors is that outside interference will often upset the reading giving false positives.
Very low frequency
VLF is what most manufacturers opt for as it balances functionality and cost-effective enough to appeal to the broader market. The Garrett detector you opt for will most likely feature VLF technology.
It works by emitting a low-frequency magnetic field into the ground. The detector will then read the reflection from the field to determine what lies beneath.
Furthermore, VLF technology allows you to tune the magnetic field so that only certain types of metal are detected.
PI technology is used by professionals searching for items deep below the surface. As a result, PI detectors are more expensive.
This technology works via a single-coil mechanism that sends and receives a pulse. This allows the user to accurately pinpoint the depth of the item.
Only top range metal detectors such as the Garrett ATX utilize pulse induction technology.
- Book: The Metal Detecting Bible: Helpful Tips, Expert Tricks and Insider Secrets for Finding Hidden Treasures; by Brandon Neice.
- Book: Metal Detecting: The Ultimate Beginner?s Guide to Uncovering History, Adventure, and Treasure; By Mark Smith.
- Metal Detecting Hobby Talk: Map of USA Detecting Regulations
- Metal Detecting World: Metal Detecting Research 101 – A Complete Guide