Best Metal Detector for Gold

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Buying Guide
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Ever since James Marshall said “there’s gold in them there hills” at Sutter’s Mill in 1848, the United States has been obsessed with prospecting for gold. Prospecting for gold is an exciting and rewarding pastime and can be a lucrative hobby for the dedicated enthusiast.

Even if it’s just the thrill and fun of a family day out, having a suitable metal detector that targets gold, could help turn an afternoon of prospecting into a lucrative expedition.

If you don’t want to spend most of your day digging up quarters or discarded screws, having a metal detector specifically for gold is a fantastic investment. With so many different metal detectors to choose from, with a huge variety of prices and features, it’s difficult to decide which is the best metal detector for the job. So, let’s take a look at 3 of the best metal detectors for gold.

Best Metal Detector for Gold Reviews

The Teknetics Delta 4000 Metal Detector

The Teknetics Delta 4000 Metal Detector Is an accurate metal detector with a good all-around performance and a detecting sensitivity up to 12 inches. This detector is simple to use and an effective metal detector that is perfect for relic hunting, gold prospecting and coin shooting. 

Featuring an 8-inch waterproof and open-face search coil this detector can be submerged in water for prospecting streams and lake beds just as effectively as land.

This detector is easy to operate and features a padded armrest, a comfortable hand grip and a three-pole adjustable shaft to ensure you get the correct height to suit your body position. Weighing only 2.6 lbs., this will be a comfortable detector to hold for long days scouring the beaches or Fields.

The Teknetics Delta 4000 Metal Detector features a large LCD visual display that uses both numerical and visual depth read out. The two-digit numerical target ID system allows for easy identification of different metals and the three tone audio ID supplements the visual detection system.

This is a fully adjustable metal detector for both sensitivity and also metal, it also features a running depth indicator from 0 to 8 inch, to help you more accurately discover your bounty. Power is generated from one 9-volt battery, with a runtime of 25 hours operating at the 7.8-kilohertz frequency.

The Teknetics Delta 4000 Metal Detector is made in the US and comes with a 5-year limited warranty against defects and quality, so you can rest assured this is a quality purchase.


  • Made in the US
  • Easy-to-read LCD
  • Running depth indicator
  • Metal discrimination mode
  • Lightweight and easy to use


  • No accessories included

Fisher Labs Gold Bug Pro

The Fisher Gold Bug Pro is a high-performance metal detector specifically designed for gold prospecting. It is an advanced version of the Fisher Gold Bug model, which has been a popular choice among gold hunters for many years.

The Gold Bug Pro is equipped with cutting-edge features that make it easier to detect even the smallest gold nuggets in a wide range of soil conditions.

One of the standout features of the Fisher Gold Bug Pro is its ability to detect small gold targets with high accuracy. It has a high sensitivity level that can pick up even the tiniest gold nuggets.

The Gold Bug Pro operates on a high frequency of 19 kHz, which is ideal for detecting small gold targets.

Another great feature of the Fisher Labs Gold Bug Pro is its lightweight and ergonomic design. It weighs only 2.5 pounds, making it easy to carry around for extended periods without causing fatigue.

The handle is also adjustable, making it comfortable for users of different heights to operate.

The Gold Bug Pro is also equipped with advanced ground balancing technology, which is essential for detecting gold in mineralized soil.

It has a manual ground balance control, which allows users to fine-tune the settings to suit the soil conditions in their area.

This feature helps to eliminate false signals caused by ground mineralization and improve target accuracy.

Its advanced features and high sensitivity level make it an excellent tool for finding even the smallest gold nuggets.

In addition, the Fisher Gold Bug Pro comes with an easy-to-read display screen that shows important information such as target ID, depth, and sensitivity level. The screen is also backlit, making it easy to use in low-light conditions.

Overall, the Fisher Labs Gold Bug Pro is an excellent choice for gold prospectors who are looking for a high-performance metal detector that is easy to use and lightweight.


  • High-Frequency VLF Technology
  • Advanced Discrimination
  • Dual-Filter Iron Discrimination
  • Large LCD Screen
  • Lightweight and Ergonomic Design
  • Waterproof Search Coil
  • Ground Phase Error Indicator
  • Fe3O4 Graphic Target ID
  • Audio and Visual Target Identification
  • Iron Audio Feature
  • Static Pinpoint with Depth Indicator
  • Double Headphone Jacks
  • 100  Hours Battery Life


  • Gives False Signal in Salt Water Area

The Bounty Hunter Gold Digger Metal Detector

The Bounty Hunter Gold Digger Metal Detector Is a budget metal detector that can be used to search for all kinds of metal including gold. This metal detector will identify quarter-sized objects up to 6 inches in the ground and larger objects up to 2 feet.

This is an all metal detector that combines with ground control to help you eliminate unwanted detection. Featuring a 7-inch weather resistant coil the Bounty Hunter Gold Digger metal detector also has a power and sensitivity control to help you reduce unwanted targets, such as iron and focus in on the more precious bounty.

Included in this kit, is a set of headphones but this metal detector can also be used headphone free as it has a built-in speaker system in the handle. The Bounty Hunter Gold Digger Metal Detector Is made in the US and weighs just 2.2 pounds making it perfect for all members of the family.


  • Simple to operate
  • Lightweight
  • Ground control feature
  • Can detect objects up to 2 feet
  • Good value


  • Not many advanced features

Gold Metal Detector Buying Guide

If you are in the market for a gold metal detector, it is important to know what to look for to make the right decision. The following buying guide will help you understand the key features to consider when selecting a gold metal detector.


The frequency of a gold metal detector is a key factor to consider. High-frequency detectors are more sensitive to small gold nuggets, while low-frequency detectors are better at finding large nuggets at deeper depths.

Ground Balance

Metal detectors for gold should have an adjustable ground balance setting to help you discriminate between hot rocks and gold nuggets. Hot rocks are minerals that can give off a signal similar to gold, so having an adjustable ground balance setting will help eliminate false signals.


Gold metal detectors with discrimination features help you distinguish between different types of metal. Discrimination is essential when you are searching for gold nuggets as you want to focus only on gold and avoid other metals that may be in the area.


The sensitivity of a gold metal detector is how well it can detect small gold nuggets. Gold detectors with high sensitivity can detect small gold nuggets even in mineralized soil.

Coil Size

The size of the coil on a gold metal detector affects the detector's depth and sensitivity. A larger coil can detect gold nuggets at greater depths, but a smaller coil is more sensitive to small nuggets.

Audio Alerts

Audio alerts are essential in gold metal detectors, and they come in two forms: tone and volume. Tone audio alerts are preferred by most prospectors, while volume alerts are used by some hunters in noisy environments.


Weight is also an important factor to consider when selecting a gold metal detector. Lightweight detectors are more comfortable to carry and can be used for longer periods without causing fatigue.


Price is a significant factor to consider when buying a metal detector for gold. The more features and advanced technology in a detector, the higher the price. However, there are affordable options available that are still capable of finding gold nuggets.

Brand Reputation

The brand reputation of a gold metal detector is also an essential consideration. Choose a brand that is well-known for making high-quality metal detectors that are reliable and durable.


Warranty is also an important factor when choosing a gold metal detector. Make sure the detector you choose comes with a warranty that covers any manufacturing defects or issues that may arise.

Finally, when selecting a gold metal detector, it is essential to consider the frequency, ground balance, discrimination, sensitivity, coil size, audio alerts, weight, price, brand reputation, and warranty.

With these factors in mind, you can choose the best metal detector for gold that meets your needs and budget.

Gold Metal Detector

Frequently Asked Questions - FAQs

Q: What types of metal detectors are best for gold prospecting?

A: VLF detectors are generally considered the best for gold prospecting as they are sensitive to small gold nuggets and can discriminate against unwanted targets. PI detectors can also be effective, but they are typically more expensive and less user-friendly.

Q: What is the best metal detector for finding small gold nuggets?

A: The Minelab Equinox 800 and Fisher Gold Bug Pro are both highly regarded for their ability to detect small gold nuggets. However, other VLF detectors with high sensitivity and good discrimination capabilities can also be effective.

Q: Can metal detectors detect gold in water?

A: Yes, metal detectors can detect gold in water, but not all metal detectors are waterproof. Make sure to choose a detector that is specifically designed for use in or around water if you plan to search for gold in streams or underwater.

Q: Can metal detectors detect gold in highly mineralized soil?

A: Yes, metal detectors can detect gold in highly mineralized soil, but some detectors are better than others in this regard. PI detectors are generally considered better suited for highly mineralized ground, as they can penetrate deeper than VLF detectors and are less affected by mineralization.

Q: Do I need a special metal detector to detect gold?

A: While there are metal detectors specifically designed for gold prospecting, many standard metal detectors can also detect gold. However, if you plan to focus primarily on gold prospecting, it's a good idea to invest in a detector that is optimized for this purpose.

Q: Is it legal to use a metal detector to search for gold?

A: The laws regarding metal detecting for gold vary depending on the location. In some areas, metal detecting for gold is legal on public lands, while in others it may be prohibited or require a permit. Make sure to research the laws in your area before using a metal detector for gold prospecting.


We have reviewed three great metal detectors for gold in this article, across a range of price points with different functions and features.

The Teknetics Delta 4000 Metal Detector Is an accurate metal detector with good all-round performance featuring an 8-inch waterproof open-face search coil. This detector has an excellent array of features and a solid performance. 

The Fisher Labs Gold Bug Pro Metal Detector is a complete set to give you a true “out-of-the-box” beginner’s metal detecting experience, along with excellent functionality. The Bounty Hunter Gold Digger Metal Detector Is a budget metal detector that can be used to search for all kinds of metal including gold.

4 responses to “Best Metal Detector for Gold

  1. […] is fully controllable and allows for easy setting to specifically target detection of certain metals such as gold. The audible detection mode enables you to set a tone relevant for each different metal across high […]

  2. […] on the market with a vast range of features and functions, so it’s challenging to decide which machine is best for your needs.  When choosing a metal detector its essential to put some thought into the kind of prospecting […]

  3. […] you’re just about to embark on a new hobby as a metal detectorist, a gold nugget prospector or even an ancient relic hunter, then you’re going to want to know how deep your metal […]

  4. […] that run at lower frequencies are not as good at finding gold because of the size of gold and its low conductivity. On the other hand, higher frequency metal […]

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