When I first started metal detecting, I only had a small shovel and my detector.
It’s a classical approach most beginners take, but unfortunately, it only makes searches more frustrating.
I often had to abandon my searches altogether because I couldn’t just locate what my detectors had discovered.
But that was until my friend introduced me to metal pinpointers, and now, I never leave a spot without recovering my targets. It’s that cut and dry.
Allow me to break it down for you how a metal pinpointer helps with my searches.
While you can certainly find targets with just a detector, you miss out on many opportunities of zeroing in and finding coins on your target.
See, a metal detector will identify your target’s general location but doesn’t narrow it down to the exact location of the target.
This is where pinpointer metal detectors come in.
Metal pinpointers are similar to metal detectors, but the biggest difference is a pinpointer utilizes a targeted approach to help you find targets less than a centimeter away from the tip of the pinpointer.
Besides accuracy, these handy devices also have plenty of other benefits, including saving time & effort and preventing your finds from getting damaged.
Some also feature a lighting system, so they might allow you to dig treasures even at night.
But with so many options in the market, finding the right metal detector for your needs can be challenging.
But the good news is we’ve scoured the internet, and we shall present you with a review of the top 5 metal pinpointers.
Table of Contents
The Best Metal Pinpointers For The Money
#1 Garrett AT - EDITOR'S CHOICE
The Garret Pro-Pointer AT is the newest version of the Garret Pro-Pointer.
It’s a classic option and a great pick for beginners and old hands at the hobby.
It flaunts plenty of desirable features and ticks on all the boxes for the best pinpointer metal detector.
Features and Benefits
Pro-Pointer has an outdoorsy design and will get you thinking it’s more like a piece of hunting gear than a metal detector.
The pinpointer’s shape is pretty intuitive, coming with ergonomic design. As soon as you pick it up, you’ll have a pretty good idea of how the device is meant to be used.
And that’s not the greatest feature yet, at least according to our opinion.
The AT in its name stands for ‘All-Terrain,’ so it’s not just handy for metal detecting on land, but in the water too.
In fact, it’s waterproof up to 10 feet. We found this quite a thoughtful feature as it opens up the device to a variety of uses.
While you won’t take it to scuba diving, it’s certainly resilient enough to handle wading on the river beds, lakes, and even in the ocean.
Lastly, you won’t have any problems cleaning the Pro-Pointer because you can simply pop it under a jet of water, and it’ll be clean in no time.
“The Garret Carrot”
Pro-Pointer has earned the nickname “The Garret Carrot,” thanks to its luminous orange color.
While it may put you off at first, you’ll find it an advantage if you’re using it underwater or in heavily-wooded areas as it’ll be much easier to spot. You’ll certainly find it much harder to lose your device!
Three Sensitivity Levels
The pinpointer also has three levels of sensitivity that are adjustable to your liking.
We thought this was a great addition because it lets you customize the pointer’s performance based on what you’re looking for.
For example, you can adjust the level of sensitivity based on the size of the object. Users finding small targets at a greater depth will find it quicker and easier.
One further benefit is the retuning feature, which lets you detect signals with even greater target location precision.
Pro-Pointer has an array of features, which add to the overall convenience and ease of use.
One such feature is an extended battery life of 30 that lets you detect without having to worry about recharging while you’re out and about.
Another helpful addition is an alarm that helps you avoid the inconvenience or embarrassment of leaving your detector behind.
Lastly, you get a built-in LED light for low light situations. I feel the light isn’t only useful but pretty essential as it provides added clarity when using the pointer in low-light conditions.
It’s not that bright enough to use at night, but it’s an awesome feature to have on board.
The Pro-Pointer is certainly the device that does what it claims.
Users find it easy to locate targets on different grounds, including water, sand, and gravel.
The sensitivity levels are useful at narrowing down at the small coins, relics, and nuggets. Plus, you get a chirp alert once it detects something.
#2 Garrett Pro-Pointer II - Best for Beginners & Pros
I usually don’t review two products from the same brand consecutively, but something is menacing with this option.
The Pro-Pointer II, an upgrade to the Pro-Pointer we reviewed above, is an even better choice for those who take metal detecting as a serious hobby.
It flaunts a revised design and comes with a wealth of features, most of which have been updated, thanks to Garret’s attention to customer feedback.
This option gives you a high-level of performance and leaves nothing to chance.
Features and Benefits
There wasn’t anything much we found special with the Garrett Pro-Pointer II’s design.
It has plenty of similarities with our top pick, except it’s a bit less impressive, considering it has an all-black color scheme.
However, the color, combined with the shape, makes it look more menacing, almost like it could double as a weapon.
Nonetheless, it has a wealth of features to promote ease of use, including conveniently-shaped buttons and an ergonomic shape.
Garrett Pro-Pointer II is designed mostly for beginners, so it’s light on features.
Unlike its elder brother, this option isn’t waterproof as it’s only rated IPX6.
We feel this is a major downside because it limits what it can do or where we can.
While it might be useful at finding targets on the sandy beaches, it won’t allow you to use it in the ocean, rivers, or lakes without getting damaged.
Sensitivity is key for a pin-pointer, and with the revised Pro-Pointer versions, it’s one less thing to worry about.
The pinpointer flaunts increased power, allowing you to target more rapidly and accurately.
And that’s not all!
The fast off-and-on cycles make it easy to rapidly shrink down your detection field to precisely pinpoint the larger targets.
Additionally, you can tune out wet beach sands and mineralized ground.
Garrett Pro-Pointer II flaunts a 360-degree side-scanning function, making life much easier for you when finding targets.
Combine this with automatic tuning and pinpoint detection, and detectorists, including beginners, will find the entire experience metal detecting experience satisfying.
Convenience Features/ Ease of Use
As with its previous iteration, this model has several features that promote ease of use.
First, it includes a lost pin-pointer alarm, which lets you know if it inadvertently gets lost in your outdoors.
It also includes a lanyard attachment clip, making it easy for detectorists to take the device anywhere they wish to go. It’s a thoughtful feature, especially for users who prefer a hands-free approach to their detection since they can dig the pinpointer on their pouch or belt.
We also find the oversize power button a handy feature as it makes it simple to operate the pinpointer, even when your gloves are on.
And thanks to the long battery life, you no longer have to worry about recharging it while out in the field.
#3 Kuman DT-44021 Pin-Pointer - Value Option
If you’re looking for a pinpointer that offers value and good sensitivity, you can’t go wrong with this option.
It sports better and faster detecting the smallest targets, giving you plenty of flexibility over where to search for your targets.
So, whether you’re planning to take your detection to the beach, in your backyards, or the woods, you can count on the Kuman DT.
Features and Benefits
Kuman DT-44021 Pin-Pointer, with an ultra-compact design, makes it easy to carry around, regardless of where you’re heading.
I can fit it into my small purse, and the lightweight design means I can use it for extended periods without any discomfort or feeling fatigued.
Unfortunately, this option is not designed for outdoor and rugged use, which we feel is limiting what we can do with it.
While the IP65 water resistance means you won’t face any challenges when the weather turns inclement, you won’t be able to effectively use the device in a lake, river, or even deep puddle.
Only the plastic tip is fully water-resistant, so dipping the higher parts will compromise the device’s integrity.
Three Level of Sensitivity
As with all our previously reviewed options, Kuman DT-44021 Pin-Pointer flaunts three levels of sensitivity.
So, whether you’re hunting for gold, coins, silver, or jewelry, you’ll benefit from the improved speed and accuracy.
Plus, pinpointer comes with vibrating and audio alerts that leave you in no doubt as to when you’ve located a target.
It’s a handy feature for beginners as it makes the entire process quite easy.
360- Degree Side Scanning
Metal detectorists will appreciate the 360-degree side-scanning function and pinpoint tip detection for better and more accurate results.
Beginners will not have to struggle zoning in on the small targets that may prove harder to locate with standard metal detectors.
Ease of Use
Kuman DT-44021 Pin-Pointer excels in the ease of use.
We find the single touch operational system quite useful for the ultimate convenience and user-friendliness.
Beginners with no knowledge of pinpointers will have a field day with this detector as they simply need to press the button and narrow down their field of detection- no complex learning curve.
Kuman DT-44021 Pin-Pointer is the perfect pick for beginners introduced to the art of metal detecting.
It lacks the sophistication and complexity of some of our previous models, so it’s easier to handle.
Alongside the ease of use, it’s an inexpensive option with a price tag that brings users easy reach on a budget.
Despite the budget tag, Kuman DT-44021 Pin-Pointer is a fantastic model with great pinpointing capabilities.
It offers three sensitivity modes, perfect for honing to the smallest of the targets. It can also be used on different terrains, from sand to soil, with great efficiency.
#4 White’s TRX Bulls-Eye - Automatic Option
Fourth on our list of the best pinpointer metal detectors is the TRX Bulls-Eye PinPointer.
It’s a wonderful choice for the lightweight detecting task and may prove handy for beginners, too.
It lacks plenty of customization as with our previously-reviewed models, but it has its strengths, which sets it apart from the rest.
But is it the right model for you?
Features and Benefits
As with our reviewed items, TRX comes with an outdoorsy, huntsman-style look, ready to handle rugged outdoors.
While the shell doesn’t feel as sturdy as I would have wished, White allows easy replacement if need be.
The majority of the device comes in a black scheme, though it has some orange accent to enhance its visibility in the woods or backyard.
It’s ergonomic and flaunting a similar shape to what Garret offers; holding it feels pretty intuitive. The buttons are conveniently-placed, while the larger handle makes it easy to grasp the pinpointer.
In general, we were impressed by design, but we thought there was one thing missing. We would have wished the TRX to include a loop to allow easy portability on a belt-loop or a sturdy keyring. As it’s for now, you have to hold it all time or use it into the included belt holster.
TRX sports is waterproof, with an IP68 rating.
The rating allows users to submerge the pinpointer up to depths of 1 meter for a total of thirty minutes.
It’s an awesome addition, as the ability to use the pinpointer underwater for such a long time adds to the overall versatility of the pinpointer.
Users will find it convenient to use the pinpointer in different locations, including water puddles, river beds, and shallow lagoons.
You also don’t have to worry if the weather turns inclement because TRX can perfectly handle rain showers and downpours.
TRX isn’t particularly impressive when it comes to features, considering it doesn’t allow you to adjust its sensitivity or even field of detection.
White’s bills the TRX as an automatic detector that eliminates the need for calibration.
It’s a good feature, but compared to other devices that offer more customization, such as sensitivity level, we saw this as a flaw.
Nonetheless, it’s effortless to use as it removes the hassle that comes with the need for manual calibration.
Convenience/ Ease of Use
TRX is easy to use, and we love that it comes with plenty of supporting features.
For a start, the pinpointer flaunts a built-in LED that helps you work your way out in low-light environments. While not bright enough for you to work at night, it’s handy in the not-so-clear conditions.
It also has an awesome battery life and will last up to 20 hours on either two AA batteries or one 9V battery, so it’ll keep you powered when you’re on and about.
Finally, it’s ergonomic, and the one-touch button operation will make everything easier for you.
TRX is a fairly effective pinpointer, though not the strongest option.
It detects coins within a range of 10 inches, which is acceptable, though you’ll need first to locate the general vicinity of the buried coin.
While most pinpointers function this way, we would have loved to see more power, especially underwater use.
#5 Deteknix Pin-Pointer Metal Detector - Best Bang for Your Buck
The Deteknix Detector would have easily scooped the top position for those interested in getting the biggest bang for their buck,
With a guarantee of no false-positives, this pinpointer guarantees adjustable sensitivity, quality LED light, and multiple colors represent amazing value for money.
In fact, if you’re a fan of Garret Pro AT and you feel your budget can only stretch so far, this could be the solution.
It’s packed with most of the AT Pro’s impressive features at a fraction of the cost. Heck! It even resembles the Pro-Pointer.
Features and Benefits
As with all Chinese-made products, we were concerned with the build quality. But Deteknix put our fears to rest once we put the pinpointer to the test.
The overall construction is solid and will stand up to rugged use. It doesn’t break easily, and occasional dings or fall do little harm to this nifty device.
Besides durability, the pinpointer has a nice touch to the choice of colors-gray, camo, black, or orange. While colors don’t affect the functionality, they make a big difference in its style.
At just 4.7 ounces and with a modest dimension, I can slip Deteknix Detector into my pouch and take it everywhere without feeling fatigued.
No False Positive
One of this pinpointer’s greatest features is that it never gives a false positive- not even when you put pressure on the tip.
It’s a great feature to have, especially when sifting dirty in a hole. With other models, worries about false-positives can stop you from pressing down hard, but you can sift away without any concerns with this option.
Another superior feature of this pinpointer is the integrated quality LED light.
While all pinpointer have LED lights, the Deteknix’s light is significantly brighter than that offered by many other similarly priced models.
It’s a handy feature, especially when hunting at dusk, cloudy days, or even in dense woods.
Deteknix also has its flaws, but they may not make a huge difference, depending on where you’re planning to take your metal detecting.
The pinpointer is not waterproof, so it may limit where you may take your hobby. While it’s perfect for metal detecting in soil, sand, and indoors, it may limit your searches in puddles, lakes, and rivers.
Best Pinpointer Metal Detector Buying Guide
While there’re many good pointers out there, I would like to help you by pointing in the right direction.
In our guide below, I shall provide you with the features to consider when purchasing a metal pinpointer.
Factors to Consider when Selecting a Metal Pinpointer
Size and Weight
The dimensions of a metal pinpointer are a non-issue because most of these nifty devices are compact, lightweight, and easy to hold.
While they may vary in size, we recommend picking an option that you feel comfortable holding and using.
Typically, most of these devices are around 10 inches long and weigh 10 ounces.
Retune refers to the ground balancing feature, which most of the cheap pinpointers lack.
While pinpointers with no retune are fine for the quiet, low-mineralized ground, their performance may turn erratic when ground conditions change, like at the beach around saltwater or areas with a high iron concentration.
Pinpointers with retuning features are useful in detecting multiple types of ground.
They make it easy to identify the ground since you only need to place the tip to the ground and press the retune button, which then matches the ground phase’s pinpointer.
Overall, it improves the device’s pinpoint performance by shrinking the detection field to zero in on a target.
The battery life determines how long you can use your pinpointer.
Generally, though, battery life seems to be universal across the board.
Many devices provide a battery life of anywhere between 20 to 30 hours on the high end.
Some high-end models also have an automatic shut-down feature that helps conserve battery life, especially when not in use.
If you plan to store the pinpointer for longer than a week, you should remove the batteries to prevent leakage or accidental battery drainage.
Also, understand that not all budget models come with batteries included, so be sure to research what you’re purchasing.
Metal detectors should be easy to use, and pinpointers shouldn’t be any different.
The best pinpointers should come with minimal features to enhance the target recovery time to spend more time detecting. In most cases, this comes hand in hand with a one-button operation.
The only downside with this design is that you need to learn how to use the same power button to adjust sensitivity, retuning, adjusting, lighting, and other features it may have.
Of course, this increases the learning curve, but once you get the hang of it, it should be second nature.
Make it easy for yourself and read the manual.
When looking for a pinpointer, always consider the accessories it comes with.
The extras are handy at improving your overall detecting experience.
Some of the handy extras you should be on the look out for include lanyards, holsters, batteries, cases, and much more.
While some may include plenty of accessories, be sure to check they’re not mediocre items. They should work just fine for the intended purposes.
While at it, it’s also prudent to consider the features a pinpointer comes with.
It shouldn’t be bland on the feature front; instead, it should offer more than the pinpointing ability.
For instance, some of the premium models come with built-in flashlights, vibration mode, etched-in ruler measurement, and much more.
The idea behind all this is to minimize the amount of gear you carry with you if your pinpointer can do it all. Whether the extras are worth the extra penny, it’s for you to decide.
Most pinpointers are under $150, a justifiable cost considering all the benefits.
However, some premium models cost twice as much, so be sure to judge the additional performance feature you can’t find on the budget options.
Generally, pinpointers under $100 are entry-level options, offering basic features. They make great options for beginners and kids.
However, they may lack some of the performance capabilities such as waterproofness and falsing.
Nonetheless, they’re affordable, offering performance between 0-3” depth.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q: Do you need a pinpointer for metal detecting?
Most metal detectors have an electronic pinpoint mode, but it can be challenging to pinpoint an object’s exact location with a full-sized coil.
A pinpointer makes things easier, especially in small, rocky areas.
Q: How much is a pinpointer?
A: Pinpointers are generally inexpensive, with most of them costing in the range of between $100 to $200.
While it may seem like an expensive accessory, it’s worth the price. The benefits outweigh the price.
Q: Are cheap pinpointers any good?
A: As far as accuracy is concerned, budget pinpointers do their primary task quite well.
The only difference between them and the premium option lies in the additional features such as depth detection, retuning, waterproofness, and more.
Q: What is the best waterproof pinpointer?
A: It all depends on the waters you’re detecting in.
For example, most pinpointers work well in any water conditions, provided there’s no mineral interfering.
On the other hand, saltwater can affect a pinpointer the same way it affects a detector.
For the maximum underwater performance, consider a submersible pinpointer with tuning/inducting technology.
Wrap Up: Our Choice
After our review, it’s evident r that the Pro-Pointer AT picks our editor’s choice.
AT has a wealth of awesome features, and so far, the most practical pinpointer in the market.
What sets it apart from models like the TRX is the adjustable sensitivity settings.
It’s also large enough to cover a wide area and pretty accurately detect even the smallest target.
While it’s not efficient as a standalone detector, it’s the most powerful of all the detectors we’ve reviewed.