TBT – The Very Best Detector…

Nothing new, just lots of rain, hail and scary ass tornadoes in the forecast….a.k.a. springtime in Texas. Here’s a “TBT” post from May 2015.

Have a great day, find one and have one for me!

Finding the Very Best Detector!

Which detector is the best? Which brand or model will outdo all the others on the market? Is it the most expensive one? The one with more bells an whistles? Or is there a lesser expensive one that can perform equally as well? More importantly IS THERE such an animal, and if so, who is it that determines that?

This topic is an old one, and one that’s been beaten to death over the years. I even remember a time when tekkies would try to make a case for this or that model by borrowing detectors from friends and running them over a predetermined course that had specific metallic items buried at varying depths. It was intriguing, but as I remember they would usually proclaim the winner to be the one “they” were using. Funny how that happened….

Anyway, I got thinking about this while reading an excellent article on wine and how proclaimed wine authorities could get it all wrong when doing a blind tasting. That is to say, a lot of lower priced wines were often given much better grades when ingested blindfolded. To put it in even simpler terms, a lot of what you read about wine is just snobbish bullshit.

Wine drinker or not, click on the following and watch the video…very enlightening.



Now, before you jump all over my ass, I know there are more definitive ways to determine winners when it comes to metal detectors.  The problem however lies in how the tester(s) know the particular nuances and characteristics of each model they are using. I suspect comparing the lower end models would be somewhat more accurate in that there are only so many features or controls to set, whereas the mid and high-priced models would offer more varied and more complex settings.

And what about soil? Would not a comparison test be a lot different in extremely mineralized soils, compared to more bland or neutral soils? Then too we now have a wide variety of coils to choose from.  So many it makes my head spin and makes me laugh.  What about depth? Would that be the determining factor in naming the winner, or would it be how a particular detector is able to find the most items amongst the trash. i.e., how fast is it’s recovery speed.

Next, “who” would determine what detector was best?  What would the criteria be that makes them the official tester(s)? How long would it take them to learn each model, and feel confident that they would have them operating at peak performance? Would they be chosen based on how long they have detected, how much they have found, how valuable their finds are, or how many videos they were able to knock out?   So many questions, and so complex that I think trying to proclaim a winner would be a waste of time.

Personally I think the best detector on the market is the one you just purchased. I know for a fact that each detector I bought over the years was always better than the last. Why? Because it was new and I had to take time to learn it’s features and nuances. These learning experiences were always time-consuming, and as a result, I slowed down, listened more intently, and yep, I found more treasure.  At that very moment I had the “best machine” on the market.

So don’t drool over that $2,500 detector.  I know it has a zillion bells and whistles, and that guy on the TV show finds a lot of cool stuff with it, but will it work like that for you and find the kind of treasure you seek?  Remember in order to find GOOD THINGS you have to be detecting GOOD SITES.  Sites that have a known history, and that can produce the type of treasure you are looking for. Finding those places is so much more important than going in debt for equipment.

Having that top of the line metal detector might make you look more professional or hip, but finding old and valuable coins is a helluva lot more fun. Give it a try some time.


Throwback Photos

My friend Archie Ray and a few of his finds, circa mid 70’s

look Ma, no pinpointer, shovel or hair…circa early 80’s




Filed under Metal Detecting

11 responses to “TBT – The Very Best Detector…

  1. John

    I noticed every time a new detector came out, they claimed to be 30% deeper than the previous model. So about now I am sure to find Chinese coins, maybe even pick pocket people on the other side of the planet, the problem is the length of time to dig for the coin through and the machinery needed.

    • John yes indeed. Every NEW detector makes the one you have obsolete. The new one will put you on easy street.

      All kidding aside I think waiting three or four years to upgrade is the way to go and I don’t really see detectors improving that much in the near future. JMO….

      Oh and keep me in mind when you make the big move.

  2. Best Detector?? Bit like asking which is the best fishing rod, or the best golf club. The best type of all three depends on the hand that uses it in the circumstances best suited to its capabilities.

    That said, I don’t blame the manufacturers for ‘bigging-up’ their products, they’d be daft not to! It’s all down to the buyer and buying the right machine for one’s particular requirements is a minefield for the unwary. Especially so if a newbie buys a machine online and without the face-to-face advice of a knowledgeable dealer.

    This reading about wine stuff…was that the label?


  3. John Devereux

    Dick you’re right. The best detector I’ve got is the one I’ve found most/best items with, namely my V3i. This could also be because I’ve used it the most. Go figure. In reality there’s no definitive test due to the high number of variables. In the UK the very expensive XP Deus is touted as the best thing since sliced bread. Nothing to do with the huge amount of advertising of course meaning that more people have bought them and therefore by sheer weight of numbers of them in use more artifacts are found with them. Who’d have thought it. Whilst research is a good tool, over here we are limited to the land we can gain permission on but normally there’s something to be found even if it isn’t a Viking hoard.

    Let’s not forget lady luck. There’s the story of a regularly used site holding many rallies over 20 years or more. Who found the hoard of Roman coins within about 10 minutes detecting? Some newbie with a cheap detector. Not a detecting find but there’s another story of lady luck smiling on some lucky chap. At a boot sale he sees a painting signed by Picasso. He buys it for about £250. It appears after research that it may be genuine and worth millions. Don’t you just hate it when that happens to someone else??

    All the best from a slightly damp Eastbourne. Regards, John

    • Hey John good to hear from you…. yes indeed advertising/promotion has a lot to do with what people buy and of course if Diggin’ Dave or Clara Cleavage uses it it must be the best.

      Ah and lady luck! Ultimately she’s the final determinator. Hope things dry out in Eastbourne. Have one for me….

  4. John Devereux

    Hi Dick. Damn I missed Clara Cleavage……………………………..

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