Getting into buying an underwater metal detector, like most hobbies, isn’t a particularly easy thing to do. There are a variety of factors to consider, much of which may overwhelm the novice hunter – and even the veteran hunter, too.
Luckily, we’ve picked out some of our favorite, and in our eyes, most capable underwater metal detectors, so that you have a better chance of finding all of those precious goods.
Before we get into reviewing and discussing the underwater sensors themselves, it is imperative users know that these devices are not cheap to buy.
The detectors are usually expert level, so any newbies looking to get into the game may find an entry-level detector more manageable, as well as digging on other terrain.
An Explanation of Underwater Detector Technologies
Here is an explanation of some of the technologies used in metal detectors.
(VLF) Very Low Frequency Metal Detectors
These kinds of detectors operate at very low frequencies, being sensitive to many different precious metals. These VLF devices are able to tell good from bad and can adjust their sensitivity accordingly.
(PI) Pulse Induction Metal Detectors
By transmitting electronic pulses down to the floor, Pulse Induction detectors are easily able to find coins, relics and jewelry, without being affected by sand or minerals. PI detectors are fantastic for diving and beaches.
Our Picks for Underwater Metal Detectors
Down below are our picks for the best underwater metal detectors.
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How would we describe the Minelab Excalibur II 1000 Garden – simply put, it’s amazing! Even though the unit is quite pricey at $1400 to $1600, this is machine that is worth the money (even after just a couple weeks) if you’re experienced and can work out where to dig.
Fully waterproof, the Minelab Excalibur II is able to move from shore, wet conditions, and submerged to depths up to 200ft (66m) without trouble.
It comes with a completely new fluorescent, high-visibility bodywork, powered by its fantastic metal hydride battery, promising a consistent dig whenever you use it.
It has a slimline coil pack ensures that makes directing this machine in any problem simple, while the remarkable signal reaction means you won’t ever get a false alarm when scanning around salt water.
The Excalibur II was crafted with a Receive Coil Boost (RCB), making any target signals amplified.
Like every detector, it is inevitable that you’ll come across some trash while digging. The Minelab does, however, minimize this.
Regardless if you’re working 200ft undersea, digging for treasures beachside or maybe just wading around, the Excalibur II 1000 Garden comes out on top as one of the most capable detectors for under water use you can get on the market currently.
- Circuit type: Pulse Induction technology for automatic cancellation of salt/ground mineralization
- Audio Threshold, Adjustable: adjust to user's preference
- User-adjustable Discrimination/Elimination
Exceptional both underwater or shoreside thanks to its has long stem build, the Garrett Sea Hunter MK II is one of the best metal detectors for underwater use.
Headphones come as standard included with the Sea Hunter, as are convenient straps that enable you to connect it to various wet suits, each one moving the coil to and fro in a much less strenuous fashion than you’d on other kinds of metal detectors.
The Garrett Infinium is among those best detectors you can get your hands on, for both property and below water digging. Like most devices from this particular category, it shouldn’t be used by for novices, with many enthusiasts admitting that learning to use the Infinium LS was a steep learning curve. But it gets going, reports of its precision and consistent reliability over several different types of terrain (as well as submerged) show it really is worth its salt.
This totally waterproof machine works effortlessly in 200 ft. or less, boasting a powerful, fully submersible engine. The box comes with a useful instructional DVD. We think this is a particularly nice touch, and something that needs to be present with many other detectors of this caliber.
The Garrett makes use of PI technologies and will work out differences between good and poor, alerting users what to begin digging for.
Even though the LS isn’t groundbreaking, it does provide a technology which could be hailed as a something new in the metal detection field, with attributes and reliability that make it ideal for diving underwater, as well as prospecting and shore hunts.
Coming with a total of 3 settings off the bat, the Fisher 1280 is fantastic for covering more ground wherever you choose to dig.
It can take on depths up reaching 250 ft. without trouble, and includes a battery in excess of 75 hours, that offers endless time to obtain some serious valuables.
Ignoring tiny pieces of garbage using the rejection controls, the sensor converts them over to the belt mount; impressive underwater headphones come included Aquanaut.
The Aquanaut is one serious underwater sensor, and one that you should look into if you’re searching for a system. It has the prowess to offer you that perfect hunt you’ve been looking for, without involving months and weeks of overtime just so you can pay for the experience.
The Tiger Shark can operate up to 200ft, coming with four different control settings, meaning you can adjust it effortlessly, allowing you to deal with all kinds of terrains and conditions.
And at only around $600 to $800, especially given the get up and go nature this system offers, this is really the nearest thing you could define as something appropriate for newbies.
Crafted for both fresh and salt water searching, the Tiger Shark is one of few devices with the ability to seek out gold chains submerged underwater.
The battery, underwater headphones and pole all come as part of the package, making Tesoro’s Tiger Shark something definitely worth considering when looking for the best detector to fit your requirements.
- WATERPROOF TO 10 FEET OR 3 METERS Ideal for use in both fresh and saltwater AT Pro will ground balance to saltwater.
- Includes NEW Garrett MS-2 Headphones
- Includes Batteries Installed.
Even though the Garrett AT Pro was made to be used on land, it is versatile and strong enough to do serious work underwater, while still working well when submerged.
You can choose from standard or professional search modes. When in use, The Garrett is secured by watertight housing, primarily included for dusty, humid, or moist conditions – although, diggers can use this underwater up to a surprising depth of 10-feet.
Electronic pinpointing, variable discrimination types, and customizable search modes allow for easy detection of coins, relics or other items ridiculously simple, whether you are a novices or a veteran
A Few Things to Consider
It is important that you go your due diligence when investing in a device that you would like to use underwater. Many retailers and manufacturers will say the apparatus is fully waterproof, though in many cases they aren’t and are normally just semi-waterproof at most.
This means that while these detectors include a water-resistant coating, the parts that make up the device are only able to go into very shallow depths, and are not acceptable for diving at sea.
Choosing the optimal device for what you need is an essential factor. Do you have another sensor for a different use? Depth should also be considered and how deep you’re going to go.
Snorkelers should check to find out if the system is complete a brief dip pole as they often do – failing to buy a metal detector for use underwater, without all the needed extras and accessories, can prove to be costly long term.
How to Pick a Metal Detector
Here, we’re going to talk about buying your very first metal detector. The new hobbyist always wants to know what metal detectors should be bought, and as you can imagine, there are several metal detectors to choose from.
The first question you want ask yourself as you are breaking into the hobby is – where am I going to be metal detecting?
Are you going to be metal detecting on a saltwater beach? Are you going to be detecting on a freshwater beach or are you detecting in parks, playgrounds, out in the woods, fields or elsewhere?
And why is this important? It’s because some metal detectors don’t work on wet, saltwater beaches – these metal detectors can’t handle the high mineralization and conductivity of the wet, salt water sand, or the saltwater itself.
Others aren’t waterproof and really aren’t meant to be used in the water, while other coils may be waterproof, but if you get the box wet, then you’ve ruined your metal detector.
The next question is – what are you looking for? If you’re looking for gold nuggets, then you’re going to have to get a specialized metal detector that runs at a higher frequency.
If you are looking for civil war relics or if you are looking for coins and jewelry, these are also things that you need to think about when you’re purchasing your first detector. These different frequencies give you better depths and better responses to different types of metals.
With most machines that you’ll come across, you can expect to have about 8-9 inches of depth on any given target.
Another question, which may be more obvious, is what is your budget? There are a wide variety of underwater metal detectors available to buy, and depending on the budget you have at your disposal, you can get a wider variety of features.
Customization, discrimination, and other useful tools can be optioned for with certain metal detectors, making your preferred way of hunting much more simple and tailored to your activity.
How Do Metal Detectors Work?
The coil in metal detectors are really in charge of the discovery of metal. In reality, you will find two distinct coils inside the metal sensor – the external coil is your transmitter coil, while the internal coil is your receiver coil. This functions to detect and enhance frequencies. This sort of technology is called VLF technology.
When power is supplied for the transmitter coil, a magnetic field is generated around the coil. As you pass the coil over the earth, you’re causing the magnetic field to change. This leads the electrons in metallic items to start moving, resulting in the magnetic field changing.
Besides the magnetic field inside the metallic item, there’s also a tiny electrical current. This usually means that the metal sensor has generated some electrical activity inside the item underground.
What’s happening is that because of the magnetic field of the metal sensor, another magnetic field is created around the metallic item. When this magnetic field is generated, along with the receiver coil is transferred through it, a charge is made. That causes the difference in tone, resulting in a sound being produced.
Obviously, detectors are capable of much more this – they’re also able to differentiate between the varieties of metal they are detecting. This can be done with the assistance of VLF phase changing. A phase shift could be described as the difference in time between the frequency of a transmitter coil and that of the item.
The Best Underwater Metal Detectors
With enough time, research and appropriate consideration of budget, you can get your hands on a brilliant underwater metal detector that will provide you with countless hunts.
So get stuck in, and find your fortune!