This metal detector has a 7-inch concentric searchcoil, the smallest of any we tested. Its cone-shaped search field can penetrate about 7 inches underground. According to the instruction manual, searchcoils of this size give a more distinct target response when objects are buried closely together, while still giving you depth and coverage. Every time you turn this detector on, it conducts an automatic battery test, sounding a tone that corresponds with how much battery life you have left: the louder and longer it is, the more battery you have. As there is no volume control, we found this a little annoying.
The interface only has three controls: sensitivity, discrimination and ground condition. You can choose from six levels of sensitivity with a dial if you’re receiving too much feedback or not picking anything up. The ground condition switch lets you choose between a high option for ground with lots of mineralization and a low position for areas with low to moderate mineralization. The discrimination dial lets you select specific kinds of metal you don’t want to hunt for. The farther right the knob is turned, the more metals are discriminated out. Since there is no option for aluminum, we counted aluminum readings that showed up as zinc as accurate because the two metals have a similar level of conductivity.
The Mojave accurately identified 36 percent of the objects we buried, which was on the lower end of the spectrum of detectors we tested. In total, it picked up 50 percent of the objects we buried regardless of accuracy.
The Mojave doesn’t display the target ID numbers corresponding to specific kinds of metal, so it’s a mystery till you dig up the treasure. It also doesn’t display the depth of any found object. It also lacks a pinpoint mode button, though manual pinpointing is an option. This can be done by sweeping the coil in an X over the target, then sweeping again over the spot side to side and front to back.
The Mojave was easy to assemble. We experienced some difficulty attaching the coil to the lower pole because the mounting screw was hard to get through the plastic washers, but it was ultimately doable. The tight fit keeps the coil very securely in place, so adjusting the coil’s angle takes a little more elbow grease than we were used to. It runs on a 9-volt battery and is supposed to provide 15-18 hours of treasure hunting before draining the battery. This time frame is slightly shorter than the other metal detectors we tested like the Bounty Hunter Quick Draw Pro and Garrett Ace 400 that were rated to work for at least 20 hours on the same battery.
This metal detector weighs a mere 2.2 pounds, so you can likely do long hunts with little arm fatigue. It is the lightest metal detector we tested. It also comes with a fantastic lifetime warranty, the best warranty package of any metal detector. Most are only covered for five years at the most.
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