Many brand-new detectorists believe they only need a metal detector and something to dig with when they get started. While you can certainly find targets with just a detector, there are lots of reasons that you should invest in a pinpointer sooner than later.
A pinpointer metal detector is simply a handheld detector. It can be used anywhere. It’s used to hone in on your target and supplements a regular detector. Once you’ve detected your target, use the pinpointer to find out exactly where your find is. It can save you a lot of time and hassle.
Benefits of Using a Pinpointer While Metal Detecting
The whole purpose of a pinpointer is to narrow down the area where a target is located, making it easier to find. Besides that, using a pinpointer will make your hunts better in the following ways:
- You’ll save time. Digging for targets like gold or coins and jewelry can be a time-consuming task when you’re metal detecting. You have to dig a hole, hunt for what could be a very small object in the hole and in the dirt you remove, and then fill in the hole to leave it as close to how you found it as possible. Using a pinpointer allows you to dig closer to where the target is located, which allows you to dig a much smaller, more precise hole to retrieve the target.
- You’ll save energy. Having a better idea of where a target is located in the ground means that you spend less energy squatting and digging to find it. Those are the two aspects of metal detecting that will tire you out the quickest. This is especially true when you are digging in the ground that has a lot of rocks and roots.
- You’ll lower the risk of damaging what you find. Since a pinpointer gives you a more accurate target location, you can be more careful as you dig. This is especially useful for relics, which are often not in the best condition.
- You can detect at night. Many pinpointers are equipped with an LED light that allows you to use it as a flashlight and continue to search. It’s also helpful if you’re detecting in a dark building. No flashlight needed! That frees up your hands since it’s built right into the pinpointer.
Choosing the Right Pinpointer
- Will you be metal detecting in or around water? If so, you’ll need an underwater pinpointer. Some pinpointers are water-resistant, and they work great in bad weather or around puddles. But for underwater detecting, even in shallow water, it’s best to get one that is specifically designed for submerging in water. Check out the Garrett Pro-Pointer AT Waterproof Pinpointer.
- Do you plan to hunt at night or in dark areas? If so, then you need a pinpointer that has a built-in flashlight. Try the Minelab Pro-Find 35 Pinpointer.
- How deep do you want to be able to locate targets? Some of the higher-end best pinpointers now come with a sensitivity setting, much like the one on your detector. That allows you to make adjustments to sensitivity which can increase the depth. It’s also a good way to locate targets that are in the wall of a hole.
- Do you want to turn off audible alerts? Most pinpointers have alerts that are audible and make a vibration when they locate an object, but not all of them allow you to turn off the sound and use the vibration only. If you like to hunt without everyone around you hearing your alerts, look for a pinpointer that offers you a choice.
- Other pinpointers we recommend are the Minelab Pro-Find 15 and Quest XPointer Pinpointer.
Garrett Pro-Pointer AT
The Garrett Pro-Pointer AT pinpointer is waterproof up to 10 ft. It features a one-button power operation, retune sensitivity adjustment, silent vibration mode, automatic power-off feature, and a lost pinpointer alarm, ensuring you can easily locate your pinpointer if it’s misplaced. It requires one 9-volt battery.
Another great feature of the Pro Pointer AT is its three sensitivity settings – low, medium, and high. These help you find smaller items at deeper depths. The sensitivity settings determine the detector’s responses to electromagnetic fields.
It has a built-in scraper for searching targets and loud audio. The Pro-Pointer includes a 30-hour 9V battery, woven belt holster and lanyard attachment loop.
- Weight: 6.5 oz
- Frequency: 11.5 kHz
- Waterproof: Up to 20 ft.
- Warranty: 2 years
- These are spectacular. They have a wonderful design, great features and work very well. T
Minelab Pro-Find 35
The Minelab Pro-Find 35 was designed for simplicity and ease of use. The Pro-Find features DIF technology, which significantly reduces interference when the pinpointer is switched off by disengaging the pinpointer coil’s magnetic field. A “lost” alarm also goes off after a period of no activity. The pinpointer requires a 9-volt battery, which lasts around 30 hours.
It has two different tones for ferrous and nonferrous metals. It’s brightly colored, easily visible, and comes with a holster, lanyard, and 9V battery.
- Weight: 6.82 oz
- Frequency: DIF frequency
- Waterproof: Up to 10 ft.
- Warranty: 2 years
- It's a good pinpointer. The smaller tip makes it easier to find targets. It's a keeper. Being able to tell ferrous from nonferrous is a plus.
Garrett Pro-Pointer II
The Garrett Pro-Pointer II features a 360° side-scan detection area and is water-resistant. It has a lost pinpointer alarm, a molded lanyard attachment clip, and fast re-tuning capability to quickly eliminate feedback from mineralized soil, salt water, and other environmental factors.
It features easy one-button operation and has an auto-off feature. Like the Pro-Pointer AT, it has a built-in scraper blade.
- Weight: 7.8 oz
- Frequency: 12 kHz
- Waterproof: Water-resistant
- Warranty: 2 years
- Arrived as promised and was literally ready to put to use. Easy to operate and is indeed better than any other pointer I have used. Love all the great features and looks like I will be trying other Garrett products!
Nokta Makro Pointer Waterproof Pinpointer
The Nokta Makro Waterproof Pinpointer is another popular pinpointer worth checking out. The Nokta Waterproof Pinpointer can be submerged up to 3 feet, making it great for water and shoreline searching, and it has an adjustable sensitivity setting that allows you to adjust to various types of terrain.
It features three different audio modes – vibration-only, audio-only, or vibration and audio.
With the Nokta Waterproof Pinpointer you get some extra goodies: a belt holster, carrying case (with a shoulder strap), and finds bag are all included with the pinpointer. It also comes with two hard-shell cases — one that is a basic cover and one that has a scraping blade for help digging.
- Weight: 8.3 oz.
- Frequency: 11.6 kHz
- Waterproof: Up to 3 ft.
- Warranty: 2 years
- I just love this pinpointer. I have used other brands of pinpointers and I feel that I have gotten superior results with Nokta Macro. Long battery life. Easy to use and very well made. Highly recommended.
This pinpointer functions in saltwater and freshwater and is fully submersible. It has three sensitivity levels and can beep, vibrate or both when it recognizes a target. It also has an adjustable LED light and is made with abrasion-resistant material. Like the other pinpointers mentioned, it has a “lost” alarm.
Requires two AA batteries, which are not included.
- Weight: 8.2 oz with battery
- Frequency: Pulse induction
- Waterproof: Up to 6 ft.
- Warranty: 2 years
- This is the best pinpointer I have ever owned. It is very solidly built, the scratch resistant material is very durable! The LED light is adjustable and it is bright! I am able to night hunt with this.
Final Words on the Best Pinpointers
Using a pinpointer when you metal detect is going to save you time and energy, which means more time spent detecting. Buying a pinpointer is a fairly small investment that will more than pay for itself in the additional targets you can find. These detectors have been rated by our customers and our staff and will make your metal detecting adventure a little easier.