I have been actively involved in treasure hunting for nearly 35 years and one of the most prominent brands over that entire time in terms of overall use and actual finds has been the Garrett Electronics line. Founded by Charles Garrett in the 1960s, he has remained active in the design, production and use of the detectors that carry his name. Over the years my family and I have used a number of different Garrett detectors with a great deal of success as a matter of fact, my wife has found 5 gold coins with her Garrett detectors in the past few years. I have used the GTI 1500 and 2000 since they were first introduced and was anxious to see how their performance had been enhanced in the GTI 2500.
The circuitry in the GTI 2500 has been refined from its predecessor, the GTI 2000. These enhancements include increased detection depth and smoother operation in mineralized ground with the Power Master circuitry, more accurate target identification with the Digital Signal Processor (DSP) circuitry and improved All-Metal operation thanks to Garretts FastTrack and AutoTrack circuitry.
The GTI 2500 is versatile enough to be used for virtually any type of treasure hunting by veteran and novice alike. One of the goals Charles Garret has always instructed his staff to strive for is performance combined with ease of operation. He has been quoted as saying a detector should not require complex programming in order to find treasure and the GTI 2500 is no exception.
The backlit meter on the GTI 2500 provides a wealth of information to help reduce the time spent recovering unwanted targets. Unlike other target ID detectors that simply indicate the probable type of target you have detected, the GTI 2500 has a second display showing the depth and relative size of the target! The TreasureVision circuitry is unique to the GTI-line and has improved the ability to accurately identify targets BEFORE they dig. On a typical target-ID detector, larger objects such as a soda can registers in the coin area of the meter while small shreds of metal or crumpled pulltabs tend to read like a nickel or gold ring. So, strictly relying on a target ID indication will result in a fair amount of extra and often unnecessary digging. The TreasureVision circuitry provides an indication of the targets relative size in addition to the probable ID. Five categories, designated as A, B, C, D and E sized targets provide the additional information needed to aid in determining if a target is worth recovering. The target types are defined as; Size A: (targets smaller than coins including small bits of iron and foil), Size B: (All U.S. coins and most rings), Size C: (Targets larger than coins yet smaller than 12-ounce cans including large class rings, screwcaps, bottlecaps, whole pulltabs and smaller relics), Size D: (Targets similar in size to a 12-ounce can) and Size E: (Targets larger than a 12-ounce can such as artillery shells, caches and other large relics). This feature, Target Size Imaging, unique to the GTI line, will greatly increase the number of good targets you will recover in the field, no matter what type of target you are searching for. Also unique to the GTI product line is Scan-Track which automatically adapts for the operators scanning speed and search style.
In addition to those described above, the GTI also includes the following modes and features all easily adjustable through the convenient touchpads found on the face of the control housing.
Sensitivity, Audio Threshold, Tone and Volume, Operating Frequency, Battery Type (nicad or regular), Salt Elimination, Belltone or Bi-Level Audio Signals, Backlight, Auto Track (All-Metal), Manual Ground Balance.
The GTI has five independent discriminate search modes: Coins, Jewelry, Relics, Zero and Custom. The first four are preset by the factory, but all five are adjustable. In addition, there is the non-motion All-Metal search mode offering Manual Ground Balance or Auto Track. The discrimination circuitry allows one to selectively accept or reject specific targets without any loss of sensitivity as would occur on most other non-notch detectors and aids in minimizing the amount of trash one would typically recover from a trashy site. Resetting the detector back to factory settings is accomplished by simply holding the power button in for 5 seconds in case you want to start making adjustments from a known point.
The standard searchcoil on the GTI 2500 is convex in shape allowing the imaging circuitry to accurately determine the target size while providing a probable ID. The coil measures 9.5 inches in diameter with an open center to aid in pinpointing. Optional non-imaging search coils include a 4.5, 12.5 and a 5 by 10 inch elliptical. Another Garrett-exclusive is the TreasureHound depth multiplier with Eagle Eye Pinpointing which converts the GTI 2500 into an extremely capable two-box detector providing maximum detection depth on larger targets.
Since the GTI 2500 is designed to provide professional-level performance under a wide range of conditions, I opted to test it at several locations that had been heavily hunted before. Almost any detector can find targets in a virgin site; however, it takes above-average performance to do the same in an area that has been picked over many times by other hunters.
The first site I choose was a wooded area where revivals had been held in the early 1900s near a small town in the north-Georgia mountains. I began my search near a small creek at the base of a hill. My last few trips here had resulted in a grand total of 3 coins. Selecting RELICS mode to avoid missing any keepers and setting the SENSITIVITY to 8, after 15 minutes, I finally received a repeatable signal near the base of an old tree. It registered 7.5 on the meter and indicated a B target at 8 inches. Thanks to a layer of tree roots, it took me almost 10 minutes to recover the target a 1902 Indian Head penny from nearly 8 inches down. The next few signals registered in the coin region of the meter yet the TreasureVision meter showed them to be C or D targets. Since this was a field test I took the time to recover them; however, as expected, they turned out to be larger trash items. Another signal near the tree line produced the Bell-Tone signal and read higher up the target ID scale. Hoping for the best, I dug into the red clay and from just under 9 inches, recovered a real nice 1892 Barber quarter. I spent almost four hours at this site and recovered a total of 11 coins, a silver crucifix and several buttons not bad considering I had long since given up on this site!
My son and I found another excellent example of how the GTI 2500 can help you find more even in a modern location. We went to a downtown Atlanta school we had been planning to hunt for some time. We recovered 26 dimes, 5 nickels and 17 quarters! Walking back to the truck, we recognized the potential the GTI 2500 had in hunting sites high in trash.
Searching for Civil War relics is extremely popular around the Atlanta area. I opted to try the GTI 2500 out at a few sites that had been Confederate campsites during the Atlanta Campaign in July 1864. They were easily accessible and as such, had been heavily hunted since the 1970s. I invited some of my relic-hunting partners with me and planned on comparing the GTI 2500 side-by-side with their detectors. We brought along some survey flags and marked every signal each of us received. After several targets were located, we compared results with all of the detectors. At the first site, the GTI 2500 located three targets that the other detectors either could not detect at all or produced a signal that would probably have been dismissed as chatter or trash. These signals turned out to be two .58 caliber Minnie Balls (9-10 inches deep) and a brass knapsack hook. We repeated the comparison test at the other sites and had similar results. All-in-all, the GTI 2500 located 8 targets the other detectors missed and accurately identified 4 which read good on the other detectors as iron trash. The keepers included 5 bullets, part of a harmonica reed, a crumpled piece of period brass and a cast I Confederate button! Needless to say, we were all quite impressed at the performance of the GTI 2500 in these worked-out sites!
The GTI 2500 is truly a professional-quality detector that offers above average performance while not requiring complicated adjustments that would scare off less-seasoned detectorists. Even a novice with a few hours of practice can search hunted-out sites with confidence and recover targets that others have missed. While the overall size of the control housing is larger than the GTA series or the smaller brother of the 2500 the GTI 1500, it is well balanced and can be used for extended periods of time without fatigue. With the features unique to the Garrett line; TreasureVision, TreasureTalk and the easy-to-use notch circuitry as well as a true All-Metal mode and improved circuitry, the GTI 2500 is a detector that can be used successfully in a wide range of applications ranging from coin, beach and relic hunting to electronic prospecting and cache hunting. The overall performance of the GTI 2500 has been enhanced and the increased detection depth in even the most adverse ground conditions make it worthy of a close look before you purchasing any new detector.
The GTI 2500 sells for $1,099 and comes with the standard 2-year factory warranty. For the name of your local dealer and a copy of Garretts informative buyers guide featuring its complete line of treasure hunting equipment, call the factory at (800) 527-4011, write them at 1881 W. State St., Garland, Texas 75042-6761 or visit their website at http://www.garrett.com. Be sure to tell them you read about the GTI 2500 in Lost Treasure.