The 10 Best Waterproof Metal Detectors
This wiki has been updated 17 times since it was first published in August of 2018. From scuba diving to beachcombing, treasure hunters are sure to find the right underwater metal detector among our comprehensive selection. We’ve rounded up picks appropriate for both salt and fresh water, from completely submersible units any expert would appreciate to budget-friendly options ideal for casual hobbyists. These offerings work equally well on dry land, too. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
December 03, 2020:
For this update, we ended up removing the Fisher 1280X Aquanaut because of its lack of online reviews. Though the Fisher brand is well-respected, this model simply lacked the customer support we needed to confidently add it to our list. We replaced it with the Sailnovo Lightweight, an affordable alternative to the higher-end models on our list. It’s not totally submersible, but its 8.7-inch waterproof search coil still makes it useful for shallow water use.
Due to availability concerns, we also removed our two White’s models, the Whites TDI BeachHunter Extreme, and the White's Surfmaster DF. If you’d like to explore more options from this brand, this collection of White’s Metal Detectors will provide a larger selection to choose from.
We also added an option specifically for kids, the National Geographic Junior. An adjustable telescoping design allows users to adjust it to shorter heights, and by simply beeping and flashing an LED when it senses metal, is easy for kids to use.
If you’re planning on choosing one of the options designed for deepwater use, like the Minelab Excalibur II 1000, or the Fisher CZ-21 -- both of which can be used up to 200 feet deep -- you may want stock up on your snorkeling gear. A new pair of diving gloves might also come in handy when digging through sand and debris.
Or, if you plan on exclusively hunting in an area that doesn’t require the waterproof feature of the options on this list, this collection of general metal detectors should provide you with a bit more variety.
August 02, 2019:
Finding the right waterproof metal detector can be difficult for beginners. While an experienced user might already know what features they want and be willing to shell out a considerable amount of money for a high-performance model, those new to the hobby with limited knowledge may not be. Unfortunately, buying a low-quality unit can often lead to becoming disillusioned with treasure hunting, since they may not discriminate between junk and valuables well enough, or worse, simply not detect anything at all. That being said, we believe we have done a good job of identifying good models for both beginners and old hands.
Beginners who aren't yet ready to make a big investment, but still want something that performs reasonably well, should look to the Bounty Hunter Land Ranger Pro or Bounty Hunter TK4 Tracker. Though these both only have a waterproof search coil and pole, they are budget-friendly and perform better than most other units in their price range. If having a waterproof coil isn't that important to you, then you may want to check out our more comprehensive list of metal detectors for beginners.
If you are a diver, whether a beginner or not, you don't just need a fully submersible unit, but one that can withstand depths of at least 25 feet, such as the Fisher CZ-21, Whites TDI BeachHunter Extreme, Minelab Excalibur II 1000, Fisher 1280X Aquanaut, and White's Surfmaster DF. Deepwater divers will want to restrict themselves to choosing between the Fisher CZ-21, Minelab Excalibur II 1000, and Fisher 1280X Aquanaut, which are all designed for use at depths well over 100 feet. It is worth mentioning that the Fisher 1280X Aquanaut is not ideal for saltwater use, since it only utilizes a single frequency, though it will work well enough for the periodic marine dive.
The Minelab Equinox 600, Garrett AT Pro, and Garrett Pro-Pointer are also fully submersible units, but not designed for use more than 10 feet deep, so they are best for waist-deep wading or perhaps very shallow snorkeling.
Tesoro Sand Shark The Sand Shark is a microprocessor-controlled pulse induction model that is specifically designed to excel in saltwater environments. Whether you are hunting on a damp beach or 100-feet underwater, it offers a high level of sensitivity and has the right amount enough discrimination that you won't waste time digging up junk. tesoro.com