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Garrett AT Gold

   (3 reviews)

Steve Herschbach
  • Price: $ 637 Freq: 18 kHz Weight: 2.8 lbs Waterproof?: Yes Current?: Yes

The Garrett AT Gold was released in 2011 and is still in production. The AT Gold is a fully submersible 18 kHz VLF metal detector aimed primarily at coin, jewelry, relic detecting, and gold prospecting.

"The AT Gold operates at a high frequency optimized for gold prospecting and includes a True All Metal Mode. The ALL METAL Mode is preferred for prospecting because it provides the greatest possible depth and sensitivity. It also provides a continuous audio response to allow the operator to hear the subtle detection signals produced by faint targets. The AT Gold includes manual and automatic Ground Balance—plus an exclusive Ground Balance Window™ feature—to optimize the detector's performance in highly mineralized ground, where gold is most often found. This detector is also waterproof to a maximum depth of 10 feet (3 meters) for searching in freshwater lakes and streams. In addition to its True All Metal Mode, the AT Gold includes two Discrimination Modes, making it a versatile coin and relic hunting machine. When selecting either the DISC 1 or DISC 2 mode, the operator gains more Tone ID information from targets in addition to the ability to discriminate unwanted trash targets (e.g. nails, foil, pull tabs)." Source: Owner's Manual

Garrett AT Gold metal detector

Garrett AT Gold control panel

  • True All-Metal Mode - Detects all types of metal and provides the greatest possible detection depth and sensitivity.
  • All Metal Iron Audio™ - Garrett Exclusive feature that audibly identifies discriminated iron while operating in a True All-Metal Mode (also available in the two Discrim Modes).
  • Higher Frequency - 18 kHz to enhance detection of small gold nuggets.
  • Ground Balance Window - Garrett Exclusive feature that allows user to “spread” the ground balance setting to reduce the response to subtle ground variations.
  • All Terrain Versatility - Weatherproof design for dusty, humid, or wet environments; and fully submersible to 10-foot depth.
  • High-Resolution Iron Discrimination™ - Provides fine resolution of iron discrimination (44 levels) for the most precise ability to separate a good target from iron trash.
  • Digital Target ID - Numeric scale from 0 to 99; indicates a target’s conductivity.
  • Pro Mode Audio - Proportional audio response and Tone Roll Audio features provide more target information.
  • Fast Track™ Ground Balance - Automatic feature that allows the user to quickly ground balance the detector in mineralized soil conditions. Ground balance can also be adjusted manually.
  • Adjustable Threshold - User can manually adjust the audio threshold (the constant background sound or “hum”) to better hear targets.
  • Fast Recovery Speed - Allows greater ability to pick out good targets amongst trash.
  • Three Search Modes plus Pinpoint
  • More Info: Continuous coin depth indicator to help determine target depth. Battery condition indicator. Graphic Target Analyzer identifies target’s conductivity. Adjustable Frequency helps eliminate interference.

Official Garrett AT Gold Product Page

Garrett AT Gold Owner's Manual

Garrett AT Gold - Steve's Review

Forum Threads Tagged "garrett at"

Garrett Metal Detector Forum


Edited by Steve Herschbach

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   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

This was my first metal detector.  Lots of features for a detector in its price range.  Pretty easy to use and a great detector to learn with in my opinion.  I used both the DD and the super sniper coils, both had their applications.  As stated above there is no volume control but I did not have a problem with that since you could adjust the threshold low enough that it did not drive you crazy.  As an all around machine for someone just getting into the sport and who does not want to invest a really large sum of money, this is a detector that should be considered.  

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   2 of 2 members found this review helpful 2 / 2 members

A very nice machine for the money. I bought it for my wife for gold hunting and then we got more specific gold machines so she quit using it except at the beach.  It's easy to learn to use. The volume (speaker) does not have a control that I'm aware of ? So when the external speaker broke soon after purchasing it I left it that way so she would have to use her headphones and not bug me with the loud noises. I sold it a while ago since we were just not using it. Three stars for the speaker breaking so soon. 



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Jeff McClendon

   1 of 1 member found this review helpful 1 / 1 member

The Garrett AT Gold was also my first metal detector with an LCD screen. I was a little overwhelmed at first after using a Tesoro Lobo and Lobo Super Traq for many years. So, my first impressions were not that great. The audio, especially the iron audio was very brash and could not be adjusted.......I bought my AT Gold used and it did not come with headphones. I didn't have very good volume adjustment on the headphones I had. I grew to really like the AT Gold however, even though there are some things that always bothered me.

There are three things I do not like about the AT Gold which are the Iron Audio, it is not optimized for high mineralization despite what Garrett says and I have never liked the weight or where the coil connects on the 8.5 X 11" DD coil.

The iron audio even through the Garrett MS-2 headphones can be heard for miles and really can't be used continuously by me anyway. I don't think Garrett intended for it to be operated like that in the first place. It is just for investigating a target. The AT Gold's iron discrimination works very well at breaking up on smaller iron objects anyway in the two discrimination modes and I like how you can use a little iron discrimination even in All Metal if you turn Iron Audio on.

I never could get it to ground balance in some places or get it to quiet down a bit on some pesky hot rocks in All Metal. The Ground Balance Window thing is iffy at best. I ended up just prospecting in Disc 1 often with iron discrimination set on 25 which worked fine.

The 8.5X11" is really a boat anchor. The 5X8" is awesome. I love how well balanced the AT Gold is with the 5X8" coil which has excellent recovery speed by the way.

I like everything else about the AT Gold, especially the very short audio tone length (compared to the AT Pro which takes forever to stop sounding even in Proportional mode). Garrett always describes the "Pro" audio on the AT Pro, AT Gold and AT Max as being proportional pulse width modulation tone roll audio. That is nice BUT the proportional audio on the AT Pro and the proportional audio on the Gold and Max are definitely not the same even though Garrett never mentions this. The medium and high tone audio on the AT Gold is MUCH better in my opinion than the stated "same" audio on the AT Pro. I also like how the audio uses exactly the same medium tone in the Discrimination and All Metal modes too. It has good recovery speed with iron audio off and is also not too shabby at unmasking if the iron audio is off and some iron discrimination is used. The Gold has a good threshold, is easy to operate and has as good a target ID accuracy as any single frequency induction balanced VLF on the market. The Gold is well built and I have always trusted it under water and have had no problems so far.

It is a very underrated, excellent detector for coins, jewelry, relics and gold prospecting for .20 gram or larger nuggets. The AT Gold has often been maligned as a detector for the ridiculously loud and slow to recover iron audio and really awkward coil and headphone connectors which are justifiable criticisms. Garrett did upgrade the coil and headphone connectors and the hand grip on more recent versions of the AT Gold. Other than that, if operating in mild or moderate mineralization, it detects very well. 

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