Several months back I was talking to someone about metal detectors and they said something about the Rutus Alter 71. I can’t remember if I asked him or I just said it in my head but it went something like “a Rutus what? Huh? Are we still talking metal detectors?” As he started telling me how much he liked it I went out on the internet and started reading and watching whatever I could on it.
Within a few days I was drooling to get my hands on one. I was reading some very promising things and had watched some great videos. A few of the videos that stood out was two that a guy did comparing it to his XP Deus and came to the conclusion the Rutus was coming out on top in most of the tests. The third one that stood out was a guy taking the Rutus to a field site where he had ran the Deus at already. He was pulling finds like crazy, in the video he says something about he wasn’t surprised, the Rutus does awesome at finding masked targets. I recall a few of the targets he was showing how they were masked.
As soon as I had one on its way to me I found the manual online. I found it very informative and easy to understand with good detail explaining what the settings do and how they affect the Rutus. Once it arrived I put it together and since I couldn’t get out for a few days I read through the manual every chance I got.
First time out
I decided to start in the basic mode and I was pleasantly surprised my first time out. I found it very easy to understand what it was telling me. I did have an issue right from the start that I quickly learned how to deal with. My first 7-8 targets were bottle caps. What I quickly learned is this. The tone will usually disappear when you turn 90 degrees was my first indication but something that happens every time is the VDI numbers will jump considerably. I learned this after digging a few coins and the VDI either not jumping or if it did it would only jump one number, I love how precise the VDI is on the Rutus.
I found that right out of the box the Rutus is a very simple metal detector to get the hang of with a boat load of options and can easily be adjusted to fit anyone’s needs or preferences. One change I made after my first time out was making up a few different audio profiles. I prefer as much variable from one tone set to the next. I made up a two tone, three tone and one that was one low tone for Iron up to foil then a separate tone for each target ID number up to 120.
With a detector that so few know about here in the U.S. I am going to try and compare it to other detectors to give you an idea of what it’s like. So I would say design wise it would put you in mind of say the Fisher F-75 or Teknetics T2. It’s light, balanced well with the S curve in the shaft below the handle. As far as the menu is concerned it puts me in mind of an E-trac where you go in and there is drop down menus making it very easy to navigate. Although I have never used a Deus, from what I hear about a Deus and the research I did it appears it is very similar in how quickly it processes targets.
I don’t like to get to technical, that is what the manual is for which can be found HERE. But I would like to discuss a few things. First, The Rutus Alter can be adjusted from 4.4 Khz to 18.4Khz in increments of .2 giving it a total of 71 available frequencies to work from. When I say this detector is fast I mean FAST! In basic program with reaction set to 3 it is crazy fast and you can set it as high as 8!
Reaction and Masking settings go hand in hand. The higher the masking setting the less clipped targets and it will quiet the detector down but at the same time the higher you go with the masking setting the lower the reaction setting has to be. In the manual it says the higher you set the masking setting the more you will lose depth but I didn’t notice any kind of significant depth loss. I love the graph on the Rutus, although I am still learning it the graph is giving a lot of information and something I rely on more and more especially on deep targets.
Why it took so long to write this review
I have had the Rutus Alter for months now with a lot of hours on it. Usually I would have written a review much sooner but I’ve struggled with this review because its stock programs are so user friendly I’ve found myself being lazy and not playing with the settings and although I have, I keep finding myself going back to stock programs. I have yet to find myself in a situation where a stock program doesn’t get the job done and gets it done well.
How I run the Rutus
I would say most of the time I run in either the basic or coin program with sensitivity as high as I can go without it being chatty. I run one of my modified audio profiles depending on what kind of site I’m hunting but usually the two tone or three tone profile. Again, I’ve played with most of the settings and I find myself keeping it that simple.
Lightweight, well built
I would like to say that the cons I am about to mention are really not fair for especially for a detector in this price range so let’s call it “If Mike could have everything he wanted”
Programs can be modified and saved but you can’t make new ones.
Only three custom audio profiles can be made. This is a little tricky when you change frequencies it will often change break points of targets so audio profiles might need changed as well.
The Rutus Alter 71 is not offered here in the U.S.! I have heard that it will be soon though!
Right out of the box it is a very capable detector. I could show someone new to the hobby how to use the Rutus and have them off finding good targets in a matter of minutes. At the same time the Rutus offers so much in customization that you can make it do anything you would want or need. It took me so long to write this review because there is so much to learn I believe to really get the most out of this detector that is packed with settings. In most cases I personally would find this a bad thing but with stock programs being just perfect, I love that you can hunt with it out of the box and modify it to exactly your needs as you learn it. I would highly recommend this detector and I actually just did. A good friend of mine just bought one!