The 10 Best Metal Detectors For Kids
This wiki has been updated 17 times since it was first published in October of 2019. These battery-operated metal detectors make great holiday or birthday gifts that’ll keep kids entertained for hours, and could inspire a life-long hobby. The most simplistic selections beep and light up as your youngster hunts for hidden treasures, while our advanced choices allow the user to alter the probe's sensitivity, perceive depth, and discriminate between high- and low-quality materials. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
November 24, 2020:
During this round of updates, we wanted to increase the range of our suggestions to include some more advanced offerings rather than only covering what are effectively just toys. With this in mind we've added the RM Ricomax GC-1028, which is a great beginner selection for those who wish to get a little serious about their treasure-hunting expeditions. The user interface is more straightforward than a regular adult's device, however, it still displays a lot of relevant information, such as sensitivity, depth, and metal discrimination. This allows youngsters to get to grips with the various functions of these machines while keeping the display quite simple. Another addition to our ranking comes in the form of the Bounty Hunter TK4. This is technically not marketed at kids, and it has a minimum length of 44 inches, so you'll need to be sure that your nipper is tall enough to control it. That said, for children who really want to learn the ins and outs of metal detecting, this one offers an array of advanced functions and has a good level of accuracy, especially considering its price. It will take some getting used to though, so it's best for kids who are truly keen on this hobby.
If the aforementioned selections are a bit advanced for your aspiring treasure hunter, opting for a more simplistic device is the best way to keep their enthusiasm growing. The National Geographic Junior is a great choice as it comes with an interesting learning guide, but if your kids are more hands-on apprentices then the RM Ricomax Junior or the Tacklife MMD03 might be a more suitable choice. The former is the best pick for accuracy, but the visuals on the display of the latter might be more engaging to a child. For very young kids we retained the Kidzlane 2-in-1, which is useful as a nice toy to play with. Parents can scatter some coins on the surface of the ground beforehand and let their little ones go out on the hunt.
November 08, 2019:
I wanted to highlight what I thought to be the most suitable metal detectors for kids (with ‘kids’ being the operative word) here. This essentially meant that selections were heavily weighted in favour of criteria like ease of use, simplicity, functionality as a toy, and most importantly, ability to engage a child or capture his or her attention (which I felt was the top priority with any of these products).
It goes without being said that these are functional but less sophisticated detectors, intended to capture a child’s attention - and if you’re looking for a professional model, you can check out the best metal detectors, or if you're looking for a more adult-appropriate entry-level model, you can have a look at the best metal detectors for beginners.
I would mention another sub-category of detectors and that’s those for adolescents, I’d define a suitable age to use these as anything between 10-15, but some parents may like to start early. This is the sub-category full of entry-level /semi-professional models and Bounty Hunter in fact makes some great entry-level products here (like the Quicksilver and Tracker IV). I may have to do a separate list on detectors for adolescents some other time.
Here though, I wanted to focus specifically on very young children and the market has its fair share of toys that may often produce a lot of inaccurate readings like false positives and false negatives. Both the Kidzlane 2-in-1 and Explore One Junior Blue are certainly built and marketed as toys – I wouldn’t expect any sophisticated level of metal detection with either, and they lack a visual interface (screen) that would otherwise notify you of, at the very least: (a) the type/quality of metal, and (b) depth of the metal.
Nevertheless, they are very good at keeping a child’s attention, especially with very young kids, with all the lighting and beeping- this is particularly true of the Kidzlane 2-in-1.
On the other end of the spectrum, the New Home Innovations Relic Hunter is a more bland and serious model that was certainly marketed for a slightly older age-bracket and even for adults as a rudimentary entry model, which is why I wanted to mention it. The detection capabilities of the New Home Innovations Relic Hunter, while better than some of the previously-mentioned toys aren’t necessarily better than some of the other more child-friendly models in the list.
Note that most of these devices have a detection depth of 4-6 inches, with larger metal objects being detectable by up to a foot.
In terms of an engaging and child-friendly visual interface, the Bounty Hunter Junior Target ID and Tacklife Junior Treasure Hunter are certainly at the top of the list (followed by the Intey Junior Yellow). However, I haven’t put the bounty hunter top because I felt that it fell short on other measures like suitable levels of detection accuracy (the Bounty Hunter Junior Target ID can be a little too sensitive here), sturdiness, ease of operation.
Ultimately, I feel that the Tacklife Junior Treasure Hunter is ultimately the best combination of operation simplicity, accuracy and user(child)-engagement (or attention-keeping).