There are so many metal detectors from numerous brands that are sold for affordable prices and will give you high-performance on your metal detecting journey. These are our top picks!
There is a thin line between getting a budget-price detector and the device being performance-oriented. To be honest, it is a big chore. And the fact that there are so many metal detectors in the market doesn’t make it easy to curate your best options. Often, people end up getting a low-priced device but with poor performance that is very disappointing.
You do not always have to make that mistake. In this list, we have aggregated, from the heap of detectors, some of the most efficient sensors that sell for remarkably cheap prices. The ultimate bargain detectors, if you may.
The best affordable metal detectors
- Garrett ACE 400 — our top pick from Garrett power ACE series of efficient detectors at budget prices
- Fisher Gold Bug Pro — Best affordable gold metal detector
- Whites Treasuremaster — Best affordable detector for underwater treasure hunting
- Minelab Vanquish 340 — Best affordable metal detector for relic hunting
- Fisher F22 Weatherproof — Best affordable entry-level metal detector
What does an affordable metal detector cost?
The first thing you need to learn is the type of detecting that you are about to embark on. Gold prospecting detectors are usually very highly-priced in the market, so a bargain gold metal detector will typically be sold for a price that is high for an entry-level detector or metal detector for kids. The $400 benchmark is an excellent place to start when looking for all-round devices that are affordable and efficient.
Affordable Metal detectors types
Generally, the most affordable metal detectors are entry-level devices and a few mid-range deals. If you’re looking at massive detectoring, the best devices do not come cheap.
Let’s check out the best affordable range devices then. Sit tight!
Garrett ACE 400 metal detectors (overall best affordable)
The Garrett ACE is a popular series of high-performing metal detectors available for affordable prices, and the ACE 400 is the chief of them all. As the list goes on, we will see more of the ACE series detectors but here’s everything about ACE 400. A high-performance all-round detector for a budget price of just a little above $300. For such a low price compared with excellent performance, you’ll struggle to get a better deal off any other detector. Starting operating frequency at 10kHz, the ACE 400 is significantly higher than its ACE series counterparts and also working at a signal strength recommended for the best coin hunting. Like the rest of the metal detectors from the ACE series, 400 is very lightweight and has an adjustable stem that improves handling during coin hunting. Perhaps the best feature of this metal detector is the frequency adjustment option that allows you to control frequency signals to optimize your hunt. The Iron audio system lets you hear the sound of discriminated iron targets and control the signal only to pick valuable metals. What else is in the box? Precisely what is in the ACE 300: Easy stow headphones that are fully submersible and wireless for standard use, ACE cover-up coil protection, and some recovery tools for hunting across different terrains. The 4 AA batteries also power the device for 20 hours each.
Fisher Gold Bug Pro Metal Detector (best affordable Gold)
Metal detectors for gold do not always come cheap and what is termed ’affordable’ in gold prospecting is actually a price for a high-level detector in other treasure hunting categories. That is precisely why we have started this list with the Bug pro—one of the most affordable metal detectors for gold on the planet. Despite its low operating frequency (for a gold detector) of 19kHz, it will still find small gold nuggets in highly mineralized terrains. And what it lacks in high operation frequency, the Fisher makes up for with technological innovations that few other metal detectors can boast. The V-break Tone discrimination feature—the first among metal detectors—uses an audio ID to detect gold instantly in the ground. The system also uses the same method of discriminate unwanted iron trash without having to dig. 40-point range Iron ID allows it to distinguish between sizes of iron metals; perhaps this is what makes the Fisher Gold bug pro a fantastic utility: adapted to locate almost all kinds of minerals with an accurate display of type and amount in the soil.
Whites Treasuremaster (best affordable underwater)
The tag for the best affordable saltwater metal detector has to go to the Whites Treasuremaster. The name ‘Whites’ on the label of any metal detector is a sure sign that you are getting the best quality, and White’s All-purpose Treasuremaster is a remarkable metal detector that the beginners and professionals all wax lyrical. Few detectors can claim to be truly all-purpose and the Treasuremaster is one of them—it will find anything from gold and silver coins to relic items to jewelry. All this is made possible by its 9.5” concentric search coil and 7.81kHz operating frequency. You can adjust the sensitivity to personalize your signals to fluid targets in deep parts of the ground or in highly mineralized grounds. The treasuremaster’s 8 modes of customized discrimination enables it to identify the majority of junk and thrash metals and to eliminate them from the way of finding valuable metals. The visual target ID is an efficient feature that indicates on a large LCD screen, the depth of metal targets in the ground and how long it will take to get there. Couple the visual target with 4-tone audio ID that uses unique sounds to alert you on finding several types of metals. The Treasuremaster’s is top-of-line performance enhanced and its lightweight feature makes it capable of gong long hours of hunting without having a physical toll on you.
Minelab Vanquish 340 metal detector (best affordable Relic hunting)
One of the most affordable metal detectors in the market that uses a multi-frequency system and 12″ search coil to optimize coin and relic hunting to top standards is the Minelab Vanquish 340. The Minelab’s V10 10×7″ Double-D coil is also included in this product. Minelab, as we already know, are responsible for some of the most technological advanced metal detectors in the world, and this detector, didn’t disappoint. The multi-IQ technology is like combining the potentials of multiple meta detectors and placing them into one body. And when you’re ready, all you need to do is to set the Vanquish to one of the three search modes: Coin, All Metal, and Relic mode. After you locate your metal, the four discrimination segments helps you curate the types of metals you want the device to notify you as valuable or the ones that you want to discard as mere Iron junk. The Vanquish 340 is also considerably lightweight at 2.6 pounds and has a LED backlight for night hunting. It is waterproof – fully submersible up to 3.3 ft underwater, and—with 9 volts batteries—can give up to 30 hours of coin hunting.
Fisher F22 Weatherproof Metal detector
The F22 is not only famous as an entry-level detector; it is so efficient and affordable that it is used by professionals all over the world. Without a split doubt, this is one of the best metal detectors around for coin and relic hunting. Since coin hunting cuts across all age groups, you need a device that is easy to operate and understand—a detector like the F22. One unique feature of this metal detector is that it has four modes of operation for metal detecting. They include custom mode, jewelry mode, coin, and Artifact mode. The F22 also has a visual target identification system to separate junk metals from the valuable ones. While this metal detector is not entirely waterproof, it is weatherproof and, thus, can withstand weather conditions like rain, storms, fast winds, etc. Finally, and perfect for a coin hunter, the F22 has three search coils and sensitivity controls to adjust the level of control, and a 5-year warranty on the product to give customer satisfaction.
Minelab X-terra 305 metal detector
Minelab will continue producing excellent detectors that are available for a budget price but for now the X-terra 305 us still up there as one of the brand’s best deals. The X-terra 305 is a remarkable entry-level detector, ideally suited for young age groups with its easy to operate feature and it is one of Minelab’s in-actual operation VFLEX technology detector. The X-Terra 305 is the perfect tool for you to begin your coin, relic, and gold hunting; it is also used by professionals across the world. It has manual ground balance operation that enables it work in the most difficult of land terrains. The two-frequency operation is perfect to switch from coin to relic hunting. And of all Minelab’s metal detectors that use VFLEX technology, the X-Terra 305 is the cheapest and this makes it a very popular choice in detecting. The depth indicator feature is a useful tool that this metal detector uses to calculate how far it will take you to dig up prospective metals in the ground and display it on the screen.
Nokta Makro Simplex
The Nokta Simplex+ is truly an all-rounder in the metal detecting world for its ability to locate treasure both on land and underwater and what’s even better about the simplex+? It is an affordable metal detector and gives excellent value for its price. An entry-level metal detector that is simple & easy-to-use—just turn on and go—it is available for a budget price. The simplex has an auto ground balancing and comes with built-in search modes which include All Metal, park, Field, and beach. It is waterproof-fully submersible up to 10ft underwater, and the operating frequency of 12kHz makes it a perfect device for treasure hunting. The vibration of the simplex is its own creative way of showing that it has detected a target in a particular area. It has a very simple, adapted for easy and less complicated handling. Not to mention that the simplex is very lightweight at merely 2.9 pounds and, consequently, can be used for extended periods without getting tired from the load. For all its admirable qualities, this metal detector is probably most popular for its lightning. So, when it comes to night-time coin, relic and gold hunting, you know who you’re banking on. LCD backlight, a very bright LED flashlight, and keypad backlight maintain top-quality lighting for this beauty.
Garrett ACE 300 metal detectors
Our second Garrett ACE on this list is the ACE 300. The junior brother to the ACE 400 but still very much rated as an outstanding entry-level detector that gives users an excellent performance; the ACE 300 is an affordable all-purpose device. The ACE 300i has an adjustable operating frequency with a 7” x 10” concentric PROformance search coils to improve sensitivity and also reduce interference. The electronic pinpointing tells you the exact location of targets, depth levels, and how fast you can reach your treasure. Furthermore, the ACE300i uses an advanced and new pulse-width-modulation Audio to hear more precise and more authentic signals from metals. An advanced Iron detector with better visual resolution identifies unwanted metals and uses the discrimination system to discard them. What else is in the box? Easy stow headphones that are fully submersible and wireless for standard use, ACE cover-up coil protection, and some recovery tools for hunting across different terrains
Bounty Hunter Tracker IV
If you know your bounty Hunters, you know how they are the BEST AFFORDABLE BRAND in the metal detecting industry. The tracker IV is their most prevalent metal detector—perfect for entry-level detectors. For its price, it provides remarkable performance nonetheless, and anyone can get it without feeling financial pressure. The simple design and operation of the Tracker IV are also what makes it so appealing to the younger age groups as they do not need metal detectors with complicated keys and display information. Operating frequency is 6.7kHz—that utilizes three search modes—and the waterproof search coil makes underwater detecting a possibility. The three search modes are All-metal (for detecting all types of metal like Iron, gold, aluminum, silver, copper, steel, brass, etc), Tone (automatic Iron rejection and two audio tones), and Full discriminate (single tone to discriminate all types of trash metals). What makes the Tracker IV so convenient for entry-level detecting, is its basic controls. The only adjustable settings in the entire device are the search mode, discrimination, and sensitivity—all of which have a simple switch to control them. Sadly, the tracker IV doesn’t have target ID, Iron Audio and depth indicator that is present in standard metal detectors.
Bounty Hunter Land Ranger Pro
This is a very affordable, easy, and simple-to-use metal detector that is custom made for underwater detecting. Unlike the technical operation of some detectors, the Land Ranger pro has the simplest operation: just power on and you are good to go. This makes it a great entry level metal detector. It comes with 7 preset modes for different levels, terrains, and environment. They include coins, artifacts, jewelry, 2 tones, 3 tones, 4 tones and all metal modes. Ground cancellation adjustment makes it suitable for the location it has been set upon and the advanced notch discrimination ignores junks to find treasure. The land ranger pro has a 7.79kHz operating frequency that works with either an 11” DD search coil or 8” concentric coil to give it remarkable depth and sensitivity during hunting.
Garrett ACE 250 metal detector
The affordable ACE 250 does all kinds of detecting but is tailor-made for relic hunting. It is the third Garrett ACE on this list. The operating frequency of this detector stands at 6.5kHz, which is good for picking up coin signals. A necessary upgrade of this metal detector from the ACE 200 is it’s comes with adjustable sensitivity unlike the former. There are Five search modes for the ACE 250: All metals (this is suited, with a high sensitivity, to locate any kind of metal object), jewelry (objects like rings, earrings, wristwatches, etc, made from valuable metal), Custom (default mode), relics (for artifacts and old objects from a long time), and coins. The operating mode is of types: Full-range, multi-notch discrimination. 4 AA alkaline batteries each have 20 hours of life in each of them; so the ACE 250 is trusted to go the miles with the sufficient power it needs. For children and young beginners in coin hunting, the lightweight and adjustable length of this model in the Garrett GTI series makes it a perfect device to start your hunt, and carry around as you travel. One downside of this entry-level metal detector is that it is not waterproof. Although for $200, you can hardly expect the ACE 250 to have it all.
Quest Scuba Tector
The Quest Scuba Tector is a performance-oriented all-round metal detector capable of extensive hunting underwater and on land. And it is available for an affordable price in case you are on a budget. The Scuba Tector follows the trend of many underwater detector by featuring a pulse-induction technology coupled with a 5×4” mono search coil for powerful sensitivity and to reach incredible depths. It is waterproof, submersible up to 200ft—tailor-made to locate coins, relics, gold, and jewelry that have been buried deep underwater. It is still a mystery how the Scuba Tector sells for its price despite having features that makes it one of the best underwater detectors around. For an entry level detector, you need something that is easy to operate and less complicated to handle; this is why the Scuba Tector uses a simple operation mechanism. With the click of a single button, you are ready for efficient treasure hunting. To switch to dive mode (the suitable mode for underwater deep hunting) all you need to do is to press two buttons for two seconds and this metal detector is ready to go.
Bounty Hunter Lone star Pro
Despite widely regarded as a middle-level metal detector, the Lone star Pro has simple controls and easy to understand LCD screen and controls that every beginner will understand easily. And it is an affordable detector. It features a visual target depth indicator but also tops it up with a sensitivity chart and a multiple notching system. The target depth indicator displays the depth of valuable targets and how far you have to dig to get it in the soil. Everything is clearly display on the LCD screen and the features easily distinguished to ensure easy identification. It has a single search mode and a single discrimination mode that ignores every junk and trash metal for only valuable metal targets. However, the target ID will indicate the exact type of metal it has uncovered in the soil with its unique icons for metals like gold, silver, iron, etc. Adjustable sensitivity for treasure hunting at great depths and also highly mineralized grounds. The lone star pro has an interchangeable coil system with 8.” Concentric waterproof search coil and a 7.69kHz operating frequency to find treasure in the field and the smallest quantity.
Teknetics Delta 4000 metal detector
Teknetics are one of the leading brands in metal detecting, and the Delta 4000 is one of our top picks for its popular easy-to-use features that are convenient for beginners and also very affordable. It has adjustable discrimination and sensitivity that allows it to select the types of metals it wants to target in the ground and also to personality operations by going to considerable depth to find treasures. The one-touch pinpoint mode also determines the extent of valuable metals and how long it will take to dig. Target identification helps it recognize precise metal targets in the ground and a digital chart on the screen to display target features and category icons. The preset ground balance helps it maneuver fields of high mineralization, and it is straightforward to use with a simple switch to turn on, and then you’re ready. The operating frequency of the Delta 4000 is 7.69kHz with 8” concentric standard search coil for high sensitivity and efficiency in locating coins and valuable metals. This metal detector uses a 9V alkaline battery that gives it up to 25 hours of metal detecting. Lastly, the delta 4000 comes with adjustable length of 43”-53” and 5 discrimination modes adjustment.
Whites X-Venture Metal detector
There’s a heap of detectors to try out if you’re looking for something affordable but over-the-roof performance and this metal detector sits comfortably on the list. And despite being a beginner and entry-level detector, the Xventure is an excellent device for all-round hunting. It comes with three search modes: pinpoint, coin, and jewelry. The pinpoint mode detects the precise location of metal targets in the ground and shows you how deep you must dig to access it. Coin mode is custom-made for finding coins of all kinds of metals and across different terrains. The jewelry mode will identify items like rings, earrings, necklaces, etc., that are made from valuable metals. The target identification system of the venture is in 5 segments: Iron, nickel, pull-tap, foil, and coin. The system uses simple icons to represent each of these metals, and a flashing LED light to indicate its presence nearby during hunting. It also comes with a waterproof standard and more depth capacity. Two-year product warranty means you have all the time to enjoy your entry into metal detecting wit this beauty before moving on to more advanced metal detectors.
Bounty Hunter Platinum
An extremely deep seeking detector, the platinum is bounty hunter’s first device in the PRO series, and it is available for an affordable price (to be honest, all Bounty Hunters are). It is an efficient metal detector, highly regarded in the metal detecting world. It is unique with its graphic target depth indicator that digitally displays valuable metal targets and calculates how far you will need to dig. The adjustable sensitivity allows it to go to the extreme depths to find treasure. The ergonomic s-rod handle gives it a very straightforward handling that beginners in metal detecting can easily maneuver. The 11” DD waterproof search coil allows it to search for valuable metals underwater. And with a frequency of 7.8kHz, it is the ultimate detector for coin and relic hunting. The bounty hunter platinum has seven levels of adjustable discrimination—each by category and four audio feedback tones. The automatic ground balance of this metal detector is a needed feature to reduce the effect of mineralization in certain grounds.
The Tesoro compadre is probably the most efficient and affordable entry-level detector in the market. It has simple operation that gives it versatility across all levels of detecting. It is fantastic for coin and relic hunting, and the mode of operation—using a simple switch knob—makes it easy to use by a young age group without extensive knowledge about metal detecting. The compadre offers a silent search 2-mode of operation: all-metal and discrimination modes. The All-metal mode is capable of locating a wide variety of metal targets in the ground. In contrast, the discrimination mode ignores trash and junk metals that get in the way of valuable metals. At 2.2lbs, this is one of the lightest metal detectors on the planet—a necessary option for kids who do not have the energy to wield more massive devices. It comes with an 8.” Standard search coil and 5.75.” standard coil for you to choose from. The quick recovery speed of the Compadre is also pretty impressive; it enables it to adjust operations to pick up every signal from metals. Finally, the Compadre has a lifetime warranty and you will struggle to find many detectors that can offer you that.
National Geographic Pro metal detector
The National Geographic pro is an incredibly affordable choice in the metal detecting world for finding coins and relic items. While it is mainly used by children and people who want to take metal detecting as a hobby, this detector can perform on an even higher level—as some professional metal detectors have found out. When it comes to metal detectors, this one is the absolute bargain. With a three-metal detection mode, the PRO can detect all metals, metals that are not iron, and Metals that are not Iron and Aluminium. It also features four ranges of sensitivity and search-discrimination. They include Iron, Aluminum, Rings (similar types of jewelry), and high-value coins. Like most metal detectors on this list, the PRO is very lightweight; this makes it a popular choice for children—and it is waterproof. All National Geographic toys—a category that this metal detector falls under—have a 100% satisfaction guarantee for customers, so you get the National Geographic Pro for your kids with the assurance that they will love it, and travel with it everywhere they go (since the Pro is very portable, and folds up to 22”)
How much would you pay for a metal detector to give you capable performance? Sometimes, you do not need to break the bank or spend beyond your budget; various detectors will provide you with high efficiency for an affordable price.