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Buying Guides

How to Choose a Minelab Metal Detector

Choosing your first metal detector can be a daunting task, there are many different ones which offer different features and prices can vary a lot! These useful questions are used to help provide a guide and starting point for anyone looking to purchase a metal detector.

1. Would you like to find treasure/coins/relics or gold nuggets?

There are typically two different types of metal detectors, those which are designed to find gold nuggets and those which are designed to find coins / relics / jewellery and other treasure. The one key difference between the different types of detectors is the treasure detectors offer discrimination settings which can help you avoid digging junk. However gold prospecting detectors need to have a manual or automatic ground balance which will stabilise the detector, preventing false signals in heavily mineralized ground.

2. Where would you like to use your detector?

In knowing where you would most commonly be using your detector can also help decide which type of detector to buy.

Gold detectors are best suited to be used where the ground is heavily mineralised. Most goldfields are normally associated with ground containing high levels of mineral. Good gold detectors will have the ability to compensate for these minerals and only give a target signal of a metal target.

Treasure detectors are more suited to beaches, parks, campgrounds - anywhere people have been.

3. Who will be using the detector?

In knowing who will be using the detector can help you identify features which may be important. Features such as ease of use, weight of detector, visual target identification, size of detector, height adjustable & portability. 

4. Are there any special features you would like included?

Different detectors can offer different features. Thinking about who is using your detector and where you will be using your detector can help work out any additional features you would like included. For example if you are detecting on the beach considering a waterproof detector or coil may be of importance. Would you like to track your finds via GPS - then a GPS feature maybe useful.

5. How often would you like to use your detector?

Next to consider is how often you would like to use your detector. Would you like to be a casual hobbyist or serious prospector? Detectors can vary a great deal in price, looking at how often you would like to use your detector can also help you gauge your price point.

6. How much would you like to spend?

After considering the previous questions it's time to ask, What is your budget? Your budget can be a very heavy influencer in your purchase decision. Once you have answered the previous questions you can then try and match as many features on your wish list to a detector in your budget. At times you may find it will better to save a little longer to get the detector which will really suit you or other times you may find you don't need to spend as much as you first thought.