Two types of lithium-drifted, solid-state, germanium detectors were compared for their ability to detect and measure mercury in matrices of different complexity. The authors compared a large, coaxial detector with relatively high efficiency and a good peak-to-Compton ratio, and a thin wafer detector, called a low energy photon detector (LEPD), which has a good resolution for low energy photons. In samples with relatively few elements primarily of low atomic number, the large detector is preferred because of its greater counting efficiency. In complex samples containing many elements that interfere with the mercury peak, e.g., samarium, thorium, barium, and tungsten, the detector of choice is the LEPD because of its ability to resolve the gamma photons. The choice of detector for intermediate samples would depend on the quantity of interfering elements present.