In this review we’ll look at the Garrett ATX metal detector.
We’ve compared value for money, features, ease of use and detecting ability
to give you our top recommendations.
In Depth Garrett ATX Review
Garrett ATX Metal Detector Review
The Garrett ATX is an exciting machine not least because Garrett promotes it with the tagline ‘All Terrain, Hunt Once, Get It All’.
That’s a pretty bold claim, and Garrett says this because they’ve concentrated the tech on achieving maximum finds in all situations.
If you’re a detectorist that wants to find hidden treasure in all types of ground including saltwater the ATX is a good choice.
Overall, I’m going to say it’s got great depth capability, it’s super easy to use, and because it automatically copes with all terrains you’ll think it has its own brain.
And you’ve probably realised already there’s no LCD display – we’re going retro here with press buttons, lights and audio. The ATX has the most commonly used buttons on demand and its secondary buttons work on a shift key.
This appeals to me. I like things simple things.
Let’s dive in.
Features and Benefits of the ATX
The Garrett ATX works on Pulse Induction at 18 – 19Khz. It has a lower pulse rate than other makes at 730 per second and this makes it more sensitive. Garrett wanted to make this the ‘find-all’ detector so it’ll even pick up tiny gold nuggets at six inches.
There’s a frequency scan button – hallelujah! This little button has fast become my favourite. Press it and the machine scans your ground for the best frequency. Perfect near other detectorists and power lines.
I’d say one of the best bits of this machine is its ability to cope with most grounds and it’s easy to use ‘search for the best’ frequency button is one of the main reasons why.
The ATX is simple to use and Garrett have really scaled down the controls without losing function.
I think this is good because many detectorists were getting fed up with too many buttons and choices.
More sounds better on paper, but when you just want to detect in peace less is more.
To cater for the weary detectorist the ATX has only two modes. Motion-mode and no-motion mode. When its switched on the ATX starts in motion mode and detects all grounds for all metals without the need to change mode.
Use non-motion mode to hone in on a target with the electronic pinpointing system. It’s just a simple rubber button with an audio tone that becomes steadier the closer you get.
This is a fully waterproof machine up three meters so you won’t lose your machine in an accident or if you get caught in a rainstorm – not to mention putting it down in wet grass to dig a target.
BUT the headphones are not waterproof and lots of reviewers are unhappy about that.
Check my recommendations for metal detecting headphones especially the waterproof and submersible types.
There are three audios on the ATX so it’s relatively simple to figure out what they mean in terms of finds.
The audio changes depending on what you’re about to uncover. Reading the instruction manual will save time but it’s intuitive and quick to figure out.
This is another aspect that makes the ATX stand out.
Its ground balancing continually measures ground mineralisation and automatically adjusts without changing modes. It’ll find the optimum setting when you change from highly mineralized soils to saltwater with no effort on your part.
There’s an iron check button thrown in so you won’t waste time digging trash, but be aware it only works on the DD coil and alerts you through audio as there’s no LCD display.
Where Is Best To Use The Garrett ATX?
It’s a pulse induction machine so saltwater isn’t a problem and Garrett have worked hard to make sure it doesn’t disappoint on mineralized ground.
This machine will work anywhere. It’s easy with automatic ground balancing and the up/down frequency adjustment button.
It performs well and with good depth capacity in all soils, sand, wet sand, saltwater, and freshwater.
What Will The Garrett ATX Find?
It finds everything metal in all terrains, so it’s the perfect choice for gold, coins, relics, and jewelry – pretty much everything you’d hope to find buried – and it does so without degrading one metal in favor of another.
The ATX is sold in a few different packages but the standard package comes with a 10 x 12 inch open DD coil. You can purchase additional coils if you fancy them. They are:
- Deepseeker 15 x 20-inch mono search coil – to cover more ground at greater depth.
- Eight-inch mono search coil – to squeeze into smaller spaces.
How The ATX Compares to Other Garrett Detectors
This is the back to basics machine detectorists have been crying out for. But that’s not to say it has basic technology.
By basic, I mean the control box and go-everywhere attitude. The buttons are simple, easy to navigate, and there are only seven of them. I don’t need my glasses to read the display and that means a lot.
This metal detector will search out all metals at six inches depth in all terrains, often going deeper. The majority of metal detectors do well on land but start shrieking like a girl band on wet sand and in saltwater. The ATX searches soils, sand and water without fuss.
It’s also competitively priced for the technology because not all of us have won the lottery yet. If you’re planning to invest in just one detector and want to search everywhere the ATX is your best bet.
Other Important Bits
It’s easy to get bogged down in specifics of coils and ground balancing if you’re looking for the best metal detector, but don’t forget these basic bits of information.
Weight and Length
The ATX measures from 20 inches up to 68 inches and it folds down into a compact size for transporting. It’s telescopic and locks into place when you’ve selected the right length for your vital statistics.
It’s a touch heavy at 3.1 kilos but it’s well designed and balanced.
The ATX takes a whopping 8 x AA rechargeable batteries. There’s a charger supplied with the machine though.
All Garrett machines are backed with a two-year warranty. It’s a sign of great build and reliability.
What Are The Cons of Garrett ATX?
You’ve guessed that I like this detector a lot for its simplicity, automated searching, and all its ground capability, but there are a few cons to be aware of. Nothing is perfect after all.
The lack of LCD display is good in some ways, Garrett has provided buttons for the features we actually use, but it feels a little old fashioned – probably because I’m so used to touchscreens. We even have a touch screen on the oven it’s gotten that common.
It’s heavy too, double the weight of some models out there and although three kilos doesn’t sound like much, it mounts up after a few hours.
And of course the MS-2 headphones aren’t waterproof despite the whole machine’s three-meter water depth capability which seems mad.
Overall, the Garrett ATX is a cracking machine. I’d say it’s a single-buy truly all-terrain detector that finds the goods and looks rugged.
I recommend this if you want to sink your budget into a single top-quality all-rounder.