Best Metal Detector for Treasure Hunting

  • By: Chris
  • Last updated on December 20, 2022
  • Time to read: 8 min.
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Ever since man has walked the earth, there have been those who seek out treasure and riches. Whether it’s a pirate in search of gold or an archaeologist looking for ancient artifacts, they all have one thing in common: The thirst for finding lost valuables is what drives them. 

With the invention of the telephone and soon after, the metal detector, finding treasure has become a much simpler process.

At a Glance – Best Metal Detectors for Treasure Hunting

ImageProduct TitleFeaturesPrice
Best Overall
Minelab CTX 3030

Minelab CTX 3030

  • Item Weight: 5.2 lbs
  • Waterproof: Up to 10 ft.
  • Warranty: 3 Years
  • Power Source: Battery Powered
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Best Depth
Fisher Gemini 3

Fisher Gemini 3

  • Item Weight: 5+ lbs
  • Waterproof:Not Waterproof
  • Warranty: 5 Years
  • Power Source: Battery Powered
Check at Amazon
Best for Pro
Nokta Invenio Pro

Nokta Invenio Pro

  • Item Weight: 6 lbs
  • Waterproof: Only the Coils
  • Warranty: 2 Years
  • Power Source: Battery Powered
Check at Amazon
Best Package
Garrett ATX Deepseeker

Garrett ATX Deepseeker

  • Item Weight: 5+ lbs
  • Waterproof: Up to 10 ft.
  • Warranty: 2 Years
  • Power Source: Battery Powered
Check at AmazonCheck at Kellyco

What Kind of Treasure Can I Find with A Metal Detector?

There is more than just gold to find.

When people think of metal detectors, they often imagine a treasure trove of old coins and long-forgotten bottle caps.  Yes, these are a part of the many things that get dug up throughout a hunting expedition.  But there are many other wonderful finds a metal detector can uncover, including buried treasure.

The type of treasure that a metal detector can and has found includes gold chalices, jewelry, and other valuable artifacts from long ago civilizations. 

The treasure found by metal detectors can also include unique meteorites, old battle axes or swords, and lost buttons from historical figures.  Not to mention your everyday run-of-the-mill gold nugget.

You don’t have to be a 10-year pro in the metal detecting world to find these items, you just need the right metal detector to get you started!

In this article, we are going to take a look at 4 of the best metal detectors you can use for finding buried treasure.  Now, there are many good options when looking for some gold nuggets or a recently lost wedding ring

In fact, we suggest you take a look at our article on the best metal detectors for finding gold.  But for this treasure hunt, we want to focus more on depth.  Because let’s be honest, those lost treasures aren’t going to be hiding just under the surface.

Why Depth is Important

Let’s talk about depth again.  You see, finding anything older than a couple of hundred years is most likely going to be buried a bit deeper than a 1915 S St Gaudens Double Eagle coin.

The deeper the detection, the better your chances.

If you are looking for things that were lost centuries ago, then you need to account for the amount of time it will take for nature to cover up your prize.  This is why we recommend getting a metal detector that can go deeper than 10 inches.  But how deep do you really need to go?

This all depends on where you are looking and what kind of terrain you will be scanning.  For example, if you live in an area with a lot of sandy beaches, then you won’t need to go as deep as someone who lives near the Rocky Mountains. 

The type of ground you are dealing with plays a big factor here.  But as a general rule of thumb, the deeper the better.

Because over time (hundreds of years or more), objects and structures will be buried either through natural processes like erosion or a volcano eruption.  Or, pieces of history get buried through the direct action of civilizations. This is why it is important to account for depth when looking for treasure.

Another thing to consider is the size of the object you are looking for.  If you are scanning for lost keys or other small items, then you won’t need a large coil.  However, if you want to find bigger treasures like cannons or chests, then you will want a coil big enough for better depth and area coverage.

What to Consider in A Metal Detector for Treasure Hunting

There are many important features to consider when shopping for a treasure-hunting metal detector.

Now that we know a bit more about the depth and what to expect when looking for lost treasure, let’s take a look at some of the features you should consider when picking out the perfect metal detector.

Some important elements of a good metal detector for treasure hunting to consider are its reliability, how heavy it is to carry around all day, is it easy to operate, and obviously, the cost.  You also want a machine that can go as deep as possible while still maintaining accuracy.

So, with all that in mind, let’s take a look at the best metal detectors for treasure hunting.

Best Metal Detectors for Treasure Hunting

Minelab CTX 3030

Best Overall
Minelab CTX 3030

The Minelab CTX 3030 is the best treasure hunting metal detector on the market, regardless of your experience level!  If you’re ready to start hunting for lost treasure, this bad boy features a 17" Smart Coil and an 11" DD Smart Coil, allowing for maximum detection of different types of metals. Additionally, the coil cover and armrest strap provide added comfort and protection while in use. The detector also includes UR-30 headphones, a WM-10 charging cable and auto charger, a battery holder, and a universal AC wall adapter. With all these amazing features, the Minelab CTX 3030 is sure to make your next metal detecting experience more enjoyable and profitable than ever before!

This versatile and rugged machine is fully waterproof, so you can take it with you on all your outdoor adventures.  Its updated design includes a brilliant full-color LCD, a new battery sand seal, and an armrest lock.  Even better, the advanced target trace discrimination and built-in speaker with wireless headphone optionality will make sure you never miss the gold beneath your feet. And of course, you get Minelab’s one-of-a-kind integrated GPS location feature, PC mapping, 5 preset search modes, FeCo discrimination, and the ability to turn on the CTX 3030 and start using it right out of the box.

The Minelab CTX 3030 is a high-end metal detector that is packed with features and performance. However, beginners may find the manual a bit complicated when reading up on what all the features do. 

Other key points that may hinder your decision are that this model is significantly heavier than other models and the price is a bit more than an average hobbyist may be looking to spend.

  • 2 smart coils included
  • Waterproof and all-terrain
  • Ultimate FeCo Discrimination
  • GPS and PC Mapping
  • Beginner learning curve
  • Price
  • Wireless headphones sold separately
  • Heavy

The Verdict: If you’re serious about treasure hunting and need a device that works great in all terrains and boasts distinct target depths and waterproof functionality up to 10 feet.  While there is a bit of a learning curve on this metal detector and the price isn’t anything to sneeze at, in comparison to the treasure you are after, it’s a steal!

Fisher Gemini 3

Best Depth
Fisher Gemini 3

The Fisher Gemini 3 is the perfect metal detector for those who want to find buried treasure. With a four-mode operation, this detector can find any large object.  The four modes make sure you are ready for any situation with options like Inductive Trace, Conductive Trace, Wide Scan Inductive Trace, and Narrow Scan Inductive Trace.  Furthermore, the VCO audio target response ensures precision pinpointing of your targets. You won't have to worry about missing anything important!

The battery test push-button switch ensures that you always have enough power to keep detection, while the large knob potentiometer allows you to adjust sensitivity to targets and ground minerals. The Gemini-3 is the perfect detector for those looking for a challenge. With its toggle switch for normal and high sensitivity levels, it can be customized to fit any terrain. And with its deep detection range, you'll be able to find treasures buried far below the surface. So go ahead and explore - with the Gemini-3, there's no limit to what you can find!

This power-packed metal detector also comes with two box settings and boasts a deeper detection than any other detector in its class, finding treasures 20 feet below the surface! I can’t stress how sensitive this machine is.  You will find any large object in the depths below and some ore veins with incredible ease. It also features crystal-controlled frequency for accurate detection and 60 cycle noise reduction circuitry to provide clear audio feedback. Plus, it has a built-in recharge circuit so you can easily power up your detector with the optional recharge kit. With a 5 year warranty, the Fisher Gemini 3 is sure to be your go-to metal detector for years to come!

This is a great product and choice for your hunting needs but there are some drawbacks to this device.  Unfortunately, avid users have complained about false readings compared to similar models, stating that it just doesn’t have the same penetrating power they are used to. 

Another complaint is the quality of manufacturing build just doesn’t seem to provide a sense of security for long-term use.  I should also note, that if you’re looking for a metal detector to find all sizes of objects, this isn’t the option for you. 

The Fisher Gemini 3 is strictly designed for deeper and LARGE objects only.

  • Deeper detection
  • 5-year warranty
  • Four mode operation
  • Recharging available
  • Won't detect small objects
  • Subject to false readings

The Verdict: If you know what you are looking for and don’t need to bother where token coins are here and there, this could be the detector for you.  It’s great at what it does, which is find larger items where other detectors just won’t reach. 

If that is what you need in a device, then the Fisher Gemini 3 is your perfect choice!

Nokta Invenio Pro

Best for Pros
Nokta Invenio Pro

Looking for a metal detector that can go deep and find the good stuff? The Nokta Invenio Pro is your new best friend! This device uses innovative technology to rapidly penetrate down dozens of meters, so you can quickly distinguish between valuable and non-valuable metals. Plus, with the included Search Coil Waterproof DD Search Coil 28x18 cm (INV28), Waterproof DD Search Coil 40x35 cm (INV40), and Waterproof DD Search Coil 56x40 cm (INV56), you'll be able to search practically any terrain.

This amazing device is perfect for deep treasure hunting, as well as finding caches, coins, relics, and even ground anomalies like underground caves and tunnels. In short, if there's something hidden underground, the Invenio Pro can help you find it! As we said, it features excellent discrimination and unmasking ability, unmatched depth, fast recovery speed, and three non-motion search modes.

The Invenio Pro also has a vibration mode, LED flashlight, and screen backlight. Additionally, it is capable of online firmware updates and connecting to a 2.4GHz wireless network. Lastly, this detector comes with a spare 9500mAh Lipo battery, INV56 search coil carrying bag, vest/carrying belt/bungee cord, and is available in 17 languages.  What else could you possibly need?

I don’t have anything bad to say about this Nokta product.  The only real drawback is the price, and it’s only a drawback if you aren’t serious about the craft or your treasure hunting intentions. But to be clear, its high price tag is justified by its impressive performance.

  • Archives target signal data
  • Tons of extras included
  • 3 waterproof coils
  • Uses artificial intelligence
  • Pricey
  • Only a 2-year warranty

The Verdict: Listen, it’s a great machine and does exactly what it advertises.  The only consideration is whether you want to pay the price.  If you are a serious detectorist, the Invenio Pro could certainly be made for you. 

If you’re a beginner, you might want to opt for a different model. We even have a review of the best metal detectors under $100, if that’s more your speed.

Garrett ATX Deepseeker

Best Package
Garrett ATX Deepseeker

Garrett ATX Deepseeker--the metal detector that can handle any terrain and any target! This detector is designed with four settings to accommodate rapidly changing ground mineralization and LED indicators so you always know what mode you're in and the signal strength. The Garrett ATX Deepseeker also has a waterproof speaker for searching without headphones, as well as frequency scan and volume control to limit the response of large signals so you can better hear deep/faint signals.

This masterpiece of a machine has all the features you need to make your next treasure hunt a success, including frequency scanning to minimize RFI interference and an exclusive design DD search coil for enhanced small-item detection. Whether you're hunting in motion or non-motion mode, the ATX Deepseeker is ready to go! And with the quick iron check feature and adjustable discrimination settings, you can customize your experience for maximum performance.

With the advanced pulse induction technology, it provides greater accuracy and sensitivity, making it easier than ever to find any size of the treasure. It's also durable enough to meet military specifications, so you know it can handle any terrain or condition. Plus, the ATX is backed by Garrett's reputation for quality and performance and a 2-year warranty. So you can be confident you're getting the best detector on the market.

What’s even better is this package provides tons of extra goodies, making it the perfect choice for value.  This package includes a 20" (50cm) mono coil that can detect deep targets, headphones for private listening, a Garrett detector sling for easy carrying, and a battery charger. It also comes with AA alkaline and rechargeable batteries, a coil cover, and a soft storage/travel case. Plus, it comes with a military-grade Garrett hard case for safekeeping.

This powerful machine is great for its versatility and durability, but it does come with some concerns.  It is a very heavy metal detector!  You need to be sure you can handle lugging this thing around all day before you purchase.  Also, there have been some complaints about inconsistent signal accuracy.  It’s not common, but just be aware before you purchase.

  • Quick iron check feature
  • Waterproof speaker
  • True all-terrain detector
  • Ground tracking with 4 settings
  • Heavy
  • Occasional false signals reported

The Verdict: The Garrett ATX Deepseeker metal detector comes with so many bonus items and key features, that it’s almost impossible to say no to this device. For people who want to get into treasure hunting and need all the bells and whistles to get started, the Garrett ATX is a great option.

It’s also priced very reasonably for all that you get. This makes it perfect for those who want to spend hours treasure

FAQs About Metal Detectors for Treasure Hunting

So many more questions to ask before starting your treasure hunt.

What’s the Best Metal Detector for Finding Gold Nuggets?

For anyone serious about finding gold nuggets, the Minelab GPZ 7000 is the best metal detector up for the task.

It offers unrivaled performance in terms of depth and gold detection and is capable of finding nuggets that other detectors would simply miss. The GPZ 7000 is also one of the most user-friendly gold detectors on the market, with an easy-to-understand control panel and clear audio signals.

For more information or other options, don’t forget to check out our article on the 6 best metal detectors for finding gold.

Has Anyone Found Treasure with A Metal Detector?

Yes, many people have struck gold (or some other valuable) by using a metal detector.  Some of the most famous finds have been the discovery of the largest gold nugget in the United States and a real-life pirate treasure full of Spanish doubloons and a skeleton to boot!

There have been a number of great treasure finds with metal detectors.

Is Treasure Hunting with A Metal Detector Worth It?

Treasure hunting with a metal detector can be a lot of fun. It’s a great way to get outside and enjoy the fresh air, and it can also be quite rewarding. If you’re lucky enough to find something valuable, it can really pay off.

But is it worth it?

Yes, it is absolutely worth it if treasure hunting is your intended use. If you’re just hoping to find some coins or other small items, then it’s probably not worth your time.

However, if you’re hoping to find something more substantial, like jewelry or artifacts, then a metal detector is a vital tool that you need in your arsenal.

How Do You Find Treasure with A Metal Detector?

Finding treasure with a metal detector doesn’t have to be difficult.  If you follow some careful steps you can certainly increase your odds. So how do you do it?

The best way to find treasure with a metal detector is to do your research, use the right tools and techniques and have patience.

The most important aspect of finding treasure with a metal detector is research your area and history.

To get specific, the first step is to do your research and find out where you are most likely to find treasure. Historical sites, old battlefields, and abandoned mines are all good places to start.

Once you have a general idea of where you want to search, you’ll need to select the right metal detector for the job. Different detectors are better suited for different types of terrain and materials, so it’s important to choose one that will work well in the area you’re searching.

Finally, once you have your metal detector, it’s just a matter of using the right techniques and having patience. Sweep the area slowly and methodically.  If you do all of this with meticulous care and detail, your chances will never be better.

For more tips and tricks on metal detecting, check out our 7 best metal detecting tips article.

Final Thoughts

Treasure hunting provides an unmatched thrill that few people can duplicate. Having a metal detector to help you in your pursuits can make the experience even more enjoyable and successful.

If you’re serious about your treasure hunting adventures or showing an interest in joining the ranks of those who love to find hidden treasures, then be sure to purchase a quality metal detector like the Minelab CTX 3030.

Thanks for reading! And until next time…

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