Today, I am going to look at Garret AT Pro, one of the popular metal detectors in the market. The AT Pro is a high-quality detector that is geared towards the professional as well as hobby treasure hunters.
A highly versatile detector, Garret AT has been recommended for different hunting activities; including jewelry hunting, cache hunting, beach water hunting, prospecting, and much more.
In my opinion, not only is AT Pro a seriously good metal detector, but I think it probably among the best detectors in the market, especially when you consider its value for money proposition.
Few, if any, metal detectors will provide you with such a huge range of features as well as performance for such a low price. Without further ado, let’s jump into the features and benefit of the Garret AT Pro.
True to Garret fashion, AT Pro comes in only a few parts, and this makes it easy to transport and store the detector. The assembly of this detector is quite modest, and users, including the beginner, had an easy time using this device.
However, it deviates from many other Garret metal detectors in regards to the color and aesthetics. Contrary to other Garret metal detectors, this model comes in an all-black orientation, and not a single bit of yellow is seen.
To me, the all-black color gives this unit a more aggressive look, perfect for the serious detectorists. Another aspect of the design that I really loved is the lightness of the Garret Pro.
Though the 3.03 pounds is slightly beyond what I prefer, you won’t have an issue carrying the AT Pro for 4 to 5 hours at a time without a break, and it won’t feel hefty.
One of the notable features that elbow this detector from the competition is the all-terrain and waterproof capabilities.
Garret AT Pro is waterproof up to 10 feet, meaning that users can take their hunting to the rivers, ocean, creeks, ponds, lakes, and creeks without having to worry about the structural integrity of the detector.
Even better, the performance of this detector is not only limited to the water bodies alone, but it’s an all-terrain detector that can be used even on land, quite a unique capability that is not common with many metal detectors.
However, I am a bit disappointed to learn that the headphones that come with this detector are not waterproof. Even so, that wasn’t really a deal-breaker, and users wouldn’t stop talking on the novelty of this detector.
AT Pro comes with an extensive range of search coils to choose from, though 8.5″ x 11″ DD PROformance submersible search coil were my personal favorite.
For starters, these coils are fully submersible and allow you to take your treasure hunting in water. More importantly, however, the D-coil design is known for its wide coverage and superior performance.
Speaking of performance, one of the crucial components that contribute to the overall performance of a metal detector is the frequency.
Garret AT Pro comes with a single 15 kHz frequency, which I found incredible for finding small targets such as coins and relics.
Though the sensitivity of this detector is simply on another level, I have to admit that it is also its greatest downfall. See, single frequency detectors usually have a challenging time hunting in the mineralized surfaces such as saltwater because of the excessive chatter.
The Ground Balance
To remedy the effects of chattering, the manufacturer has fitted this model with ground balance functionality.
Contrary to what you would expect for a mid-level detector and this price point, this metal detector doesn’t come with the typical pre-set ground balancing, but instead, it comes with a fully automatic and manual ground balancing.
I think this function quite handy as it will help to fine-tune the metal detector to the soil type and condition you are detecting in.
And to a large extent, I can admit that it decreased the false signals as well as the “chatter” from the mineralized soils and increased the overall accuracy.
But still, I’ve to point out that even with the ground balancing feature, I wouldn’t really recommend using the AT Pro in mineralized surfaces because you’re bound to get interference from the buzzing sounds.
The important thing to note is that chattering is evident on any single frequency machine, and not only on the Garret AT Pro.
Target Identification (TID)
According to the manufacturer, the Target ID will help users identify the target the detector has located. However, the numbers of variables that range from 1-99 are by no means accurate, but this function works to a certain degree and will give you higher confidence in what is generally located on the ground.
In my experience, I found that Iron, for instance, is less than 35, silver is greater than 70, while gold is between 35 and 70.
However, you need to understand that several variables can impact the target identification, such as the mineralization level, level of the ground, or even the level you’re swinging the coil in relation to the ground.
Pro Audio Mode
The Pro Mode or the Proportional Audio provides a full strength audio response and will let you hear a lot more about the target, thus giving you more information about the type of item you found.
For instance, if you move closer to a target, you’ll notice that the sound becomes a bit weaker, and as you get closer, the audio becomes stronger.
Though I’ve to admit it comes with a learning curve, especially when deciphering the exact kind of target. But once you master the various tones, you’ll find yourself digging less of the trash and more of treasure.
High Res Iron Discrimination
The iron discrimination with levels of between 1 to 40 is quite a crucial component that will help you from picking trash items such as nails, foil, caps, and other undesirable metals.
Like the Pro mode, the audio mode is advanced, and few entry-level detectors, if any feature this mode. When turned on, the Iron Mode will let you hear discriminated iron, letting you know where there’s iron in the ground.
However, for it to work, you need to ensure that your iron discrimination is already set, and your machine will emit low, grunting tones that indicate the target has iron.
Sure, the Garrett Pro AT isn’t the all-perfect metal detector we’ve in the market, but I’ve to admit it surpasses what many would expect for a mid-level metal detector.
The all-terrain functionality, combined with a full-fledged ground balance, are some of the reasons why this detector has gained so much popularity within the treasure hunting domain.
Julie comes from a long line of metal detectors. Her family has been in the hobby for over 45 years and has recovered large amounts of civil war artifacts as well as a fair number of bottle caps. Lately she has been focusing on metal detecting in the Rocky Mountains.