Tag - airsoft review

5.11 Tactical XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant Review

5.11 Tactical has been in the tactical gear and apparel industries for many years and they have a great reputation among airsofters looking at quality gear that won’t completely break their budgets. One of the most popular products they sell to airsoft gamers is the MultiCam TDU Pant. For just under $80 dollars, this pant has some great durability and construction quality that stands up to rugged gameplay. It was with great excitement that I saw they had announced the line of XPRT tactical apparel at SHOT Show 2017.  With a much higher price point, I was curious as to how they would hold up and compare to their lesser-expensive counterparts. 5.11 Tactical sent over a pair and I was able to find out.

In terms of design and layout, the XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant is similar to its older sibling with some important deviations. First, the new XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant features 16 pockets! This time, you can even find pockets in the lower ankle areas of the pants! This pair of pants even features magnetic closures on the multiple cargo pockets so that you don’t end up making a bunch of noise like you could with Velcro or zippered pockets. The fabric is nice and durable, being very similar to the MultiCam TDU Pant, and I didn’t feel as though it would rip very easily – although, I should note that I did not purposely try and tear them just because they are an expensive pair of pants. The belt loops of the new XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant are nice and large to accommodate thicker rigger/gunner belts and the waistline of the pants features a nifty elastic adjustment system that enables the wearer to custom fit them to their particular dimensions. As an added bonus, there is a comfortable padding on the inside of the waistband to make wearing those thick belts a bit more comfortable.

The knee pad area of the XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant has also been updated a bit. It more easily fits 5.11 Tactical’s new ENDO.K knee pad, a semi-rigid foam pad which I highly recommend. I squeezed these pads into my older MultiCam TDU Pants and simply love them – however, the fit is somewhat awkward. The new pocket is much more accommodating and shaped to these knee pads. you can still fit 5.11 Tactical’s softer knee pads in there if you like, but I highly recommend switching over to the ENDO.K pads.

The older MultiCam TDU pants tended to be a bit tight in the crotch – especially when in a crouched position. If posted up for a time, this could be pretty uncomfortable. The best way to combat this problem was to buy a size larger pair of pants than you would normally need. This gave the crotch area more material for stretching, and worked fine, except that the rest of the garment was a bit looser than I would prefer. Thankfully, this issue is now longer anything to worry about with the XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant. 5.11 Tactical has replaced sections of the pants with a stretch fabric that moves with you and allows you to perform squatting and prone maneuvering without a problem.

The Good

  • Rugged construction
  • Stretch fabric where needed
  • Lots of pocket space
  • Adjustable waistline
  • Fits ENDO.K knee pads very well
The Bad

  • Price point
  • Magnetic closures tend to snap closed when you might want them to stay open

Overall, the biggest problem with the 5.11 Tactical XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant is its price point. At $269.99 the pants are more expensive than a set of Crye Precision G3 combat pants. Now, is the XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant great and amazing: YES! If you can afford these pants, you should. However, for most airsoft gamers out there, the price point is quite a bit more than what they will be comfortable with or used to paying for such an item.


5.11 Tactical XPRT MultiCam Tactical Pant Review Score

(4 out of 5 Stars)

Official Product Page


 

Review of the Garmin tactix Bravo Smartwatch

Recently, we got the chance to check out Garmin’s newest iteration of their tactix smartwatch, the tactix Bravo. Featuring carbon-coated, stainless steel construction and a highly scratch-resistant sapphire lens, it will take a lot to damage this watch during those MilSim airsoft games in rugged terrain. Additionally, the watch was designed to be as non-reflective as possible, as to not inadvertently give away your position to opposing players. The tactix Bravo is available in two flavors: One with a silicone watch band and another that includes two nylon watch bands (one in olive drab and the other in black). Either of these options are fine, but depend more on your personal needs. If you plan to wear the watch in a personal, outdoorsman style of operation, you might want to consider going with the silicone band. If you are wearing the tactix Bravo on top or underneath your combat shirts and gear, you may consider the nylon band option. Measuring 2 inches by 2 inches, with a depth of 0.6 inches, the tactix Bravo is a rather large watch.

The tactix Bravo features a host of sensors designed to be of benefit to those of you in the field – whether it be for real world tactical operations or multi-day airsoft games in rugged territory. By hitting the down page button on the tactix Bravo, you can get to a compass, barometer, and altimeter – all of which seemed particularly accurate while I trekked across Southern California. The compass features both the degree of the direction you’re facing as well as the general direction (e.g. “NW”, “N”, NE”) for ease of use.

tactix-bravo-5

Pairing up with your smartphone via the Garmin Connect app is very simple, thanks to the tactix Bravo’s built-in ANT+and Bluetooth connectivity. Once paired, the Garmin Connect app will keep track of your activity levels on a daily basis, as well as have the ability to interface with other fitness apps on the app store – like My Fitness Pal. The information is extremely valuable – whether you are on a regimented diet and exercise plan or just curious about how many calories you burn doing your daily activities.

Of course, the tactix Bravo can receive your texts, emails, and app notifications as you like, and the Garmin Chroma Display is refreshingly crisp and can even be seen clearly in daylight! For those of you who do airsoft night games with night vision goggles, you will be happy to know that the tactix Bravo has a night vision mode! This enables a change in the display’s color scheme and light output to be optimized for your night vision equipment. As a fun additional feature, the tactix Bravo can even control a Garmin VIRB XE action camera, but I couldn’t test that feature as I don’t have a VIRB XE camera on-hand.

One of the coolest parts of the tactix Bravo’s feature set is its built-in GPS receiver. Similar to the Garmin Foretrex series, the tactix Bravo will display your current path and also display waypoint information and leave a trail of virtual “breadcrumbs” along your path. Furthermore, it will also display your current location in MGRS, Degrees Minutes Seconds and more. MGRS is extremely important for those of you in the military, being the geo-coordinate system standard for NATO. According to the specs of the tactix Bravo, it features an omni-directional stainless steel EXO antenna, with GPS/GLONASS satellite reception. I am not sure what that means in terms of the technical side of things, but I can tell you I was able to get GPS satellite reception inside my apartment just as fast as outdoors – so it means better reception all around!

tactix-bravo-4

At Garmin’s Connect IQ website, you can download additional pages for the tactix Bravo, with choices for speedometers, watch faces, navigation data, and more. It is really interesting to see the expandability that has been created for the watch from independent developers. Going down that road, if any of you are developers interested in creating new data pages for Garmin devices, checkout the Connect IQ developer portal.

Navigating around the various screens and pages of the tactix Bravo interface is very simple. The watch has a small array of buttons: Up, down, back, action, and backlight. These all do pretty much what you would expect. After selecting whatever option you prefer, you press the action button to proceed into that option. Hitting the action button from the main display will bring up the list of activities you can perform. There is a wide variety of choices – with the tactix Bravo even having Jumpmaster and Tactical sport modes! The Jumpmaster will help you if you ever decide to jump out of a perfectly good airplane while the tactical mode enables the GPS and sensor logging and is great for when you are actually playing your airsoft games. The jumpmaster mode can be used for HAHO, HALO, or Static line jumps. Of course, for those of you looking to be active people sans airsoft or military/tactical needs, you can also choose from things such as swimming, hiking, and trail running – to name just a brief few.

Overall, the Garmin tactix Bravo smartwatch is an excellent activity tracker and wearable watch that will provide some essential navigational capabilities during your stints in rugged terrain – whether you are playing in an airsoft game, camping, or in the field. The tactix Bravo retails for $699.99 and is available now on a variety of online stores as well as Garmin’s official website.

[easyreview title=”Garmin tactix Bravo Smartwatch Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

Krytac War Sport Licensed LVOA-C M4 Airsoft Rifle Review

Krytac’s latest airsoft electric gun is the War Sport Industries licensed LVOA-C M4 airsoft rifle. A true work of airsofting art, the Krytac War Sport LVOA M4 is an immaculate recreation of the real steel firearm – perfect for not only training purposes but, also, playing airsoft! Featuring the War Sport Industries LVOA handguard/rail system and top hat flash hider (included separately in the box), this is one sweet-looking airsoft rifle. The biggest difference between this and the real steel variant is that the Krytac version comes with their proprietary stock, which I am a huge fan of for its battery space and ergonomics.

Internally, the Krytac War Sport LVOA M4 airsoft rifle features the Krytac Nautilus 8mm version 2 gearbox with all the features it was lauded for in the Krytac Trident line of AEGs. Features such as a lightweight polymer piston with 4 metal teeth, and the 2nd to last tooth absent. Additionally, its cylinder head is padded with a rubber piece to optimize the AoE and absorb energy from standard wear – greatly increasing its lifespan. The rifle even features the Krytac high torque motor, which is a very good motor in an out of the box AEG – most stock motors don’t even come close to its build quality.

lvoa-image-2

[ezcol_1half]

Specifications

  • Length: 675mm (26.5″) – 787mm (31″) (Adjustable)
  • Weight: 2.5kg (5.5lbs)
  • Inner Barrel: 363mm
  • Muzzle Velocity: ~400 FPS (Measured with 0.20g BBs)
  • Thread Direction: 14mm Negative
  • Gearbox: Ver 2 Full Metal, Fully Upgradeable
  • Motor: Long Type
  • Fire Modes: Semi/Full-Auto, Safety
  • Package Includes: Gun, Magazine, Front and Rear Sights, Manual
  • Battery: 9.6v 1600mAh Butterfly Type (Battery not included. Wired to the stock with Small Tamiya connector)
  • Hopup: Yes, Adjustable
[/ezcol_1half] [ezcol_1half_end]

Features:

  • Fully licensed receiver and design from War Sport Industries
  • Unique wolf grey finish
  • Custom licensed LVOA handguard
  • Warsport GP compensator
  • 5 position collapsible stock
  • Krytac low-profile motor grip
  • Ambidextrous sling plate
  • Ambidextrous selector switch
[/ezcol_1half_end]

lvoa-image-3

The Krytac War Sport LVOA is available in several colors. AirsoftGI has the airsoft rifle in both foliage green and flat dark earth, while Evike has the rifle in foliage green and wolf grey. My personal choice in picking the rifle up was to use Evike’s 10 magazine deal and the wolf grey variant of LVOA M4. I couldn’t be happier with it – the rifle performs flawlessly and just feels incredibly solid to field in outdoor field games. I can’t wait to take it to the next Lion Claws event to get some mud on it! The biggest issue I have had with the Krytac LVOA M4 is that it only ships with one small rail segment – my preference would have been for Krytac to throw at least one more in the box.

I played several games over at SC Village in Norco, CA with the Krytac War Sport LVOA M4 and  was consistently impressed. It is made from an aluminum allow, which is light weight and strong – however, it feels more front-heavy than most M4s thanks to the robust hand guard. Thankfully, it is not an issue that will deter from your gameplay experience. I am also happy to say that the rifle seems to take most magazines without issue. I have tested it with STANAG style Elite Force midcap magazines as well as KWA K120s and even some fat mags – everything seems fine so far. If I run across a magazine type that won’t fit or feed properly, I will update this review – also, feel free to comment below with your magazine recommendations.

lvoa-image-4

Inside the box, you will find a gas block unit that you can install for a more realistic look. Once you remove a few screws, the handguard slides forward an off the outer barrel without issue. You simply put the gas block system in place then slide the handguard back on, making sure it lines up. Very simply. Another cool addition is the metal “top hat” style flash hider that is included alongside the traditional orange flash hider. Installing the top hat unit is also fairly straightforward and adds an extremely realistic look to the AEG.

Overall, the Krytac War Sport LVOA M4 is an excellent airsoft rifle which represents the good build quality Krytac has been known for since their launch. The Krytac LVOA M4 is available now at several online retailers:

AirsoftGIEvikeAirsoftExtreme

[easyreview title=”Krytac War Sport Licensed LVOA M4 Airsoft Rifle Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” class=”btn_blue” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

APS ASR-118 “Boar Tactical” Custom Silver Edge 17″ KeyMod Airsoft AEG Review

APS has been making some waves in the airsoft community with their line of “Silver Edge” gearbox-equipped airsoft rifles. What is the silver edge gearbox? APS has used a special polishing technique to remove any rough surfaces within the gearbox, allowing all the moving parts to do so with reduced friction. The silver edge gearbox also features 8mm stainless steel bearings, steel gears, and a ported polycarbonate piston. The APS ASR-118 “Boar Tactical” Custom Silver Edge 17″ keymod airsoft rifle takes the silver edge gearbox and couples it with an outstanding upper and lower receiver along with an aggressive 14.5” keymod rail system. To make it even better, APS added a ton of out-of-the box accessories which show they care about the end-user experience of purchasing and operating one of their AEGs. We would like to thank EVIKE.com for sending us over one of the APS ASR-118 airsoft rifles for review.

asr118-6

[ezcol_1half]

Features:

  • Full metal receiver with laser engraved trademarks
  • Precision Lipo ready high cycle Silver Edge gearbox
  • Flip-up front & rear sights
  • High visibility fiber optic front sight
  • High speed competition style custom flat trigger
  • Extended charging handle latch
  • Ambidextrous magazine and bolt catch
  • Custom hand stippled motor grip
  • Gold tone finished selector, mag and bolt catch
  • Ambidextrous QD one point sling swivel
  • Gold coated mock bolt
  • Functioning bolt stop for easy hopup adjustment
  • “Yippie kay yay” laser engraved morale dust cover
  • Full metal 14.5″ Keymod rail system
  • Aggressive ported compensator
  • 3x additional accessory rails included
  • 6-position retractable crane stock
  • Full length top rail
[/ezcol_1half] [ezcol_1half_end]Specifications

Length: 920mm-1120mm, Adjustable
Weight: 3200g
Inner Barrel: 325mm
Magazine Capacity: 300rd Hi-Capacity. Works with Matrix, APS, Tokyo Marui and other compatible M4 / M16 Series Airsoft AEG Magazines
Muzzle Velocity: 390~415 FPS (Measured with 0.20g BBs)
Thread Direction: 14mm Negative
Gearbox: Ver. 2 Full Metal, Fully Upgradeable
Motor: Long Type
Fire Modes: Semi/Full-Auto, Safety
Battery: 9.6v Small Butterfly Type recommended (Battery not included. Wired to the stock with a Small Tamiya connector)
Hopup: Yes, Adjustable
Color: Black
Package Includes: Gun, Magazine, Manual[/ezcol_1half_end]

asr118-7

Getting a chance to field the APS ASR-118 is a dream. I have taken so many third-rate airsoft guns into a game only to be disappointed at their performance. The APS ASR-118 has outstanding performance and whatever polishing magic APS did to the silver edge gearbox was well worth it. The APS ASR-118 chronographed in between 400 and 410 feet per second with .20g BBs. That being said, I would recommend running a couple thousand .25g or heavier BBs through it to break in all the internals. The spring should settle to 400 at that point as well, making it more in-line with Southern California outdoor game field limits. With my APS ASR-118 running just a tiny bit hot, the referees were content to let me use a slightly farther minimum engagement distance to compensate, which I gladly did.

I was easily able to both assault as well as use the APS ASR-118 for SPR/DMR purposes thanks to its high FPS and ability to take heavier BBs even farther. With the 4X optic I had attached to the rifle, I racked up a number of “kills” each game. Included in the box are two 45 degree angle iron sights – the front sight having a small fiber optic piece for better visibility. I was very impressed that APS would have included 45 degree iron sights in the box as I have never seen it done before – even on very high-end airsoft rifles.

asr118-5

The trigger on the APS ASR-118 is also a cool feature to note as it is one of those tricked out flat style triggers. The trigger pull is very short and even when going full “paintball trigger” on the ASR-118, it was able to keep up without issue. I ran a 9.6v battery in the crane stock and had no issues getting it to fit. One of the most generic features of the APS ASR-118 is its crane stock, but that is only because the rest of the rifle looks so “tacticool”. I am considering mounting an MFT minimalist stock on the rifle just to see how it looks. Also of note is the extended magazine release, which makes changing magazines all that more efficient. Its “Yiipie kay yay” emblazoned dust cover yields yucks a plenty, and made for a great conversation piece in between games.

Overall, the APS ASR-118 “Boar Tactical” Custom Silver Edge 17″ KeyMod airsoft rifle is an excellent value at $280 dollars – not only does it perform very well, but it also looks incredibly aggressive and high-end. The APS ASR-118 is an airsoft rifle that you will have for years in your airsoft arsenal.

Product Link

[easyreview title=”APS ASR-118 ‘Boar Tactical’ Custom Silver Edge 17” KeyMod Airsoft Rifle Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” class=”btn_blue” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

Spartan 300 Blackout Series SRX Model 306 Airsoft Rifle Review

spartan-306-3

VFC’s new generation of AEGs come with a lot of cool features – both internally and externally. Many of these features and more can be found on the new Spartan SRX Blackout series model 306 airsoft rifle by Palco Sports, Spartan, with manufacturing by VFC. Externally, the entire SRX 300 Blackout series is beautiful – each with its own design aesthetic and intended usage. The SRX Blackout Series Model 206 is intended for assault, with a black, full metal body, 9.5 inch rail system, and VFC’s new QRS stock. For you trademark junkies out there, you will find both Spartan and VFC trades alongside the rifle’s receiver. Included in the package are two front end rail covers to protect your hands from getting unnecessarily cut as well as one midcap magazine. Please note that some retailers are selling this airsoft gun with an additional midcap magazine AND foregrip. Your mileage may vary on that.

Internally, the SRX Blackout series 306 comes with VFC’s new generation 8mm version 2 gearbox. Of course, being a VFC gearbox, you get their auto-shimming steel gears (whether you love them or not) as well as their new hop-up chamber. While some people are not huge fans of the self-shimming gears, they are working great in this new line of VFC manufactured AEGs and I nave no complaints about them. The SRX 306 also features a polycarbonate piston an aluminum, ported piston head. Overall, this AEG has a lot of performance right out of the box, with our testing yielding around 385 feet per second and a fire rate of 16BBs per second with a 9.6V battery.

spartan-306-4

On the field, I played several weekends worth of games at SC Village in Norco, CA and had an absolute blast. The SRX Blackout 306 has a snappy trigger response and aggressive look which definitely turned heads. I actually had several other players ask me what kind of gun it was and where they could get one for themselves. I also wanted to give big props to Palco Sports and Spartan for using the VFC QRS stock on this rifle. It is one of the best airsoft rifle stocks I have ever used and couldn’t believe how easy it was to open up and insert a battery into. I would not hesitate to use this in a milsim game or even a game on a local field, however it definitely shoots too hot for indoor CQB gameplay.

Overall, we had a great time checking out the Spartan SRX Blackout Series 306 from Palco Sports, Spartan, and VFC. It has a lot solid build quality, both inside and out, and would make a great airsoft rifle for any outdoor milsim or skirmish games. The rifle retails for $339.99 and is available now.

[easyreview title=”Spartan Blackout Series SRX 306 Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”4″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” class=”btn_blue” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

Planet Eclipse GX Kitbag Review

Planet Eclipse was nice enough to send over one of their highly talked about GX Kitbags for us to take a look at and review. One of the biggest issues I face as an airsofter, and I hear this same thing from some paintballer friends of mine, is how to transport all of your gear to and from game events. Both of us – airsofter and paintballer alike, tend to accumulate a lot of stuff… And, for some reason, we feel the need to take it with us to every game. That being said, we are always looking for large kit bags to store everything. Thankfully, the GX Kitbag from Planet Eclipse fits the bill and will be a boon to your gear-carrying needs.

The Planet Eclipse GX Kitbag is made from a rugged polyester material and features a strong, rigid external shell that allows it to keep its shape when bumped around. Also, one of the smartest features of the GX Kitbag is that it has two robust wheels on it and a retractable pull handle. This allows you to navigate the Planet Eclipse GX Kitbag around like a large piece of luggage. In fact, thanks to its wide wheels, it is so stable when being pulled about that I would trust my actual business clothes in it for long trips. The internal storage space is no joke with an approximate volume of 100 liters – that’s over 26 gallons of liquid! Disclaimer: GamingShogun.com does not recommend that you attempt to travel with the GX Kitbag filled up with 26 gallons of liquid, that would just be strange.

Official Features

[ezcol_1half]
  • Tough, light EVA protective lids
  • Fast access end zip pocket with luggage ID
  • Convenient external side zip pockets
  • Retractable pull handle
  • Vented & water resistant lined compartments
  • Internal clear document holder & zip pockets
  • Soft touch handles for comfort and grip
  • High visibility locking zip pullers are easy to locate and operate
  • Robust rails & wheel set
[/ezcol_1half] [ezcol_1half_end]
  • Specifications
  • Dimensions 340mm (13.4”) x 820mm (32.3”) x 360mm (14.2”)
  • Capacity 100L approx
  • Weight 5.7/12.6lb – 6.3KG/13.9lb – With Insert
  • Materials
  • 100% Polyester
  • Care Instructions
  • Hand wash only.
[/ezcol_1half_end]

The GX Kitbag features one large chamber and one smaller one, but through the use of the internal flap system, can be joined into one large super-chamber. How you organize your gear is a personal thing, but the GX Kitbag is more than up to the challenge of whatever you prefer. More to that point, Planet Eclipse includes several  Inside, the bag is lined with a tarp-like material so that any paint that gets on it can be easily cleaned up.

Photo Gallery

Overall, the Planet Eclipse GX Kitbag is an incredible option to transport your airsoft or paintball gear – whether its in your trunk or checked into the belly of an airliner. The GX Kitbag is rugged and has a huge internal volume. The GX Kitbag retails for just shy of $200 Dollars and is available now at several online retailers, including the Planet Eclipse Online Store.

[easyreview title=”Planet Eclipse GX Kitbag Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” class=”btn_blue” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

BFG BELTminus Review

BELTminus is an extremely lightweight and thoroughly modernized version of the classic M-1956 Load-Carrying Equipment. The belt kit concept moves your gear onto your waist for improved cooling and more efficient weight bearing. BELTminus™’ MOLLEminus™ technology is fully MOLLE compatible and removes unnecessary weight and complexity while improving durability. In usage, the BELTminus is a sort of hybrid between a more traditional chest rig and a battle belt. You can definitely mount pouches around its body – both ammo and utility, but it is thin to safely mount a pistol holster.

Routing pouch straps through the MOLLE compatible webbing on the BELTminus is pretty easy due to the lack of restrictive material on the backside of the belt. The biggest issue I had while using the Blue Force Gear BELTminus system was that, sometimes when performing specific maneuvers, gear housed on the belt can dig into your body as there is no supporting backpiece.

The BELTminus comes in several sizes for the most exact fit as possible allowing for the best gear loadout and the maximum weight savings.  For best sizing, choose the closest size below to your actual waist size.  Note: this may be different than your pants size.

  • XS: 31” – 41” waist
  • S: 34” – 44” waist
  • M: 37” – 47” waist
  • L: 40” – 50” waist
  • XL: 43” – 53” waist

Aside from this occasional issue, the BELTminus system is very comfortable. The version of the system we got to review featured the heavier duty shoulder pads which allow for more weight to be comfortably carried. There is a lower profile version available sans the shoulder pads. This version would work well underneath the wearer’s clothing as a concealed option.

Overall, Blue Force Gear has continues its line-up of rock solid products with the BELTminus system. The product retails for $120 with the low profile shoulder straps and $160 for the version with heavy duty pads. It is available now.

Official Product Page

[easyreview title=”BFG BELTminus Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”4″ ]

Product Images

Beretta ARX 160 Elite Carbine Airsoft AEG by Umarex Review

arx-160-elite-force

The release of the Beretta ARX 160 AEG by Umarex and Elite Force was very polarizing, with airsofters either loving or hating its unique, exotic design. To Umarex’s credit, they have replicated the actual ARX 160 with extreme accuracy and even crafted some of the real steel features (that would not normally be on an airsoft gun) into airsoft form. We got to spend some time with the ARX 160 “Elite” carbine AEG version of the airsoft rifle and have completely fallen in love with this unique design from the land of art, history, and Ferraris (not to mention some seriously good eats)!

The real steel Beretta ARX 160 was initially part of Italy’s future soldier program to upgrade the service rifle their troops wield. The ARX 160 was built, from the ground up, for user comfort, modularity, and maneuverability – all excellent qualities to have when you are fighting in Italy’s Apennine Mountains. In 2008, Beretta released a consumer version of the ARX 160, so now the gun-buying public at large has the opportunity to own one.

The airsoft rifle comes in both black and dark earth variants and features a strong nylon fiber body measuring 690mm long when the stock is folded away and between 840mm and 910mm when the adjustable stock is deployed. The ARX 160 weighs about 6 lbs. In terms of design, the airsoft rifle accurately replicates the real steel version. It even features the attachment point for the GLX160 grenade launcher – a launch specifically created for the firearm. Weird thing is that there is no GLX160 launcher in airsoft form, yet! I am hopeful that Umarex will build one at some point soon. The airsoft rifle’s stock is adjustable and foldable, and even has a nifty system whereby power from the battery (which is stored inside the folding stock) is transferred to the AEG through the stock hinges. To my knowledge, this has only been seen in one other airsoft gun design (Ed. Note: And, in that case, not very well).

arx160-front

It chronographs at about 395FPS using .20g BBs and has a crisp electronic blow back feature that is one of the best I have seen. Usually, electronic blow back doesn’t work all that great – but, in this airsoft rifle, it is a lot of fun and adds to the shooting experience. Also, the trigger response is nice and snappy, which is always a plus when I am looking at an airsoft rifle. Finally, the airsoft rifle features multiple sling points accommodating just about any kind of sling setup you like – just beware the sling mounts are not QD, so you will need a wire loop adapter if that’s what you currently use. Coupled with its foldable stock and the ARX 160 Elite is very portable.

Two of the best features of this airsoft rifle have to be its extremely simple to use quick change barrel and spring systems. Just like the real rifle, you pull down on two toggles and the barrel assembly just slides right out of the muzzle end. Changing the spring is also simple, by folding the stock and removing a small plate. It’s features like this that an airsoft player will thank the manufacturer for time and time again. Right now, there exists only two ARX 160 barrel lengths – the 16 inch that comes standard with the ARX 160 Elite and a shorter, CQB length barrel which comes standard on the ARX 160 Sport version. I hope that they eventually put out a 20 inch barrel length (the real 20 inch barrel is being tested by Beretta) as I would love to make this a DMR platform.

The one issue I have with the Beretta ARX 160 Elite by Umarex is its iron sight system. The rear sight is next to useless for airsoft purposes. It features a rotating aperture and very small peep holes to aim with. While this is very realistic in terms of the rear sight on the actual firearm, it is something I wish they would have deviated from reality for with the airsoft version.

arx160-back

That being the case, the ARX 160 Elite has a long, monolithic top rail on which you can mount just about any optic you prefer. Also cool is that, because the stock is at a lower elevation than the top rail, you will have an easier time aiming with them when wearing face masks and trying to get a good cheek weld.

On the field, the ARX 160 is a dream to shoot. Its snappy trigger response and maneuverability are great for urban games while its velocity allows the use of heavier BBs in longer range engagements. I ran .28g BBs in this ARX 160 and was able to hit just about anything I wanted on the fields of SC Village in Southern California. I am scheduled to attend the next BB Wars event by AirsoftGI in Perris, CA and my rifle of choice is going to be the ARX 160 Elite, I liked it that much. Umarex and Elite Force have even replicated the unique magazine/bolt release of the ARX 160, which is located beneath the trigger guard.

Overall, I am giving the Beretta ARX 160 Elite carbine airsoft rifle by Umarex and Elite Force high marks for its faithful recreation of the real steel firearm. The Beretta ARX 160 Elite carbine airsoft rifle by Umarex retails for about $274.99 and is available now from most online airsoft retailers.

[easyreview title=”Beretta ARX 160 Elite Carbine Airsoft AEG by Umarex Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

TacLace Review (Airsoft)

taclace-copy

Some might think that tying the laces of your boots is an activity that has reached the pinnacle of methodology. If you thought that, you are wrong. Two US Marines crafted the TacLace system while deployed in Afghanistan, an area of the world that requires some seriously rugged footwear. They also needed a way to get their boots on and secure as quickly as possible as seconds matter – especially in their profession.

The TacLace is a cinch system made up of an elastic band, some Velcro, a push lock, and some eyelets. The exact instructions can be found on the TacLace website but, in short, you feed the ends of your laces through the TacLace band and tie them off. Then, you control the level of slack in your laces by stretching or relaxing the elastic band and relocking the lace in place with the push lock. After locked into where you need them, you wrap the TacLace around your boot and secure it by way of Velcro. In short: It’s a brilliant idea.

Here is a comparison of traditional lace tying vs the TacLace:

The TacLace makes the tying process so much easier and a whole lot quicker, I am curious as to why the military hasn’t just worked out a contract with TacLace to make it standard issue equipment. The biggest factor in terms of successfully installing the TacLace for use is in the length of your laces. You need fairly long laces to make sure there is enough slack to adjust. Thankfully, each set of TacLaces comes with 84″ inch long laces, so the company really has thought of everything.

taclace-image-1

Personally, I have worn boots for years in both civilian and, sometimes, industrial environments. More recently, I picked up airsoft when starting this column for GamingShogun.com and I found tactical boots are a must have. Often times, airsoft games are played in adverse conditions with plenty of things that can hurt you and your feet. After using the TacLace system for a couple months now, I would not ever wear tactical boots without them. You can even use them on side zipper boots which, while no longer military approved, are still popular in the first responder and security sectors. After two months of use on and off the airsoft field, my coyote tan TacLaces are a little bit discolored from the stretching of the elastic – they have turned a slightly lighter shade than before. But, structurally, they are in great condition and have no reason to believe they won’t last a long while to come.

taclace-image-2

Once on, the TacLace does not easily come loose and the way they wrap around the top of your boot will also help to keep the boot opening closed up. Nothing worse than getting a bunch of sand or rocks in your boots!

Overall, TacLace makes the process of tying your boot laces faster and much more efficient than previously thought possible. Whether you are in a profession where every second matters or just a person looking to more efficiently don your footwear in an action sports scenario, you will love TacLaces. Plus, each set of TacLaces is just $14.99 so it won’t break your bank to pick a couple up. They are available in black, coyote tan, and olive drab color schemes.

TacLace Official Website

[easyreview title=”TacLace Review Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

LUCID P7 4X Weapon Optic Review (Airsoft)

p419 copy

Good optics are a bit of a controversial topic in airsoft. Some hardcore players will purchase an optic that cost two to three times the price of their actual airsoft gun! The question is, do you need it when many players do just fine with iron sights or even sighting down the muzzle of their guns? Obviously, it is a deeply personal choice. For me, I like having an optic on the airsoft rifle I use – especially one with a bit of zoom factor to it. Airsoft is not a very long range hobby, so a 4X zoom is a great option. Not only will it get you in close to see where your BBs are landing, but it will also allow you to still engage closer targets – albeit not as effectively as a dedicated, 1X red dot, etc.

Lucid Optics is a US-based firearms optics company that is known for offering high quality optics for less than high price points. You can find our review of their M7 microdot red dot sight here. While at the 2015 SHOT Show in Las Vegas, we got to lay our eyes on their upcoming P7 4X optic, and now it has hit the market. Retailing for $439 dollars, the optic features a rugged, rubberized body with nitrogen purged housing, giving it a 100% fog-proofing. It also features the very cool reticle auto-brightness feature found on other Lucid Optics models, which is great when moving in and out of structures. The P7 has a very clear reticle with an interesting MoA “measuring tape” system. This is for the real steel shooters out there, but it is said to allow the shooter to more easily account for distance in placing their shots. In fact, each part of their P7 reticle has a very specific size, shape, or distance from center, all of which means something. If you are buying this optic for real steel shooting, please take the time to fully understand what it all means.

p420 copy

Being that it is meant to put up with real steel usage, the P7 Weapon Optic is very rugged, with what the company is calling a 100% shockproof design, rated up to a .458 SOCOM! While airsoft does not feature the kind of recoil real steel firearms features, a player’s equipment still needs to put up with running, jumping, and crawling through all manner of rugged terrain. It also needs to put up with the shock that comes with slamming into objects one comes across in the environment. If I had a nickel for every time I accidentally hit my rifle into the side of a wall or tree, I would be sitting on beach at my own private island resort right now. Thankfully, the Lucid Optics P7 4X Weapon Optic puts up with all of this punishment and keeps on ticking. I even attached it to my KWA PTR LM4 gas blowback airsoft rifle, which features a nice little bit of recoil, and the optic never lost its zero.

The one thing I did not get a chance to do was actually take this optic out into the airsoft field and play a game with it. This evaluation is based solely on airsoft firing range time only. We did not take the optic out into the field as we didn’t want it to accidentally get shot out from a BB strike (it is a review item and will have to be sent back). Given the price point of this optic, I would highly recommend that you get a high quality BB shield made from polycarbonate that will avoid unfortunate, and costly, breakage.

p417 copy

Another great “plus” in choosing the Lucid P7 4X Weapon Optic is that it is powered by one AA style battery. Many optics on the market opt for CR123A style batteries. While offering a smaller form factor, these are harder to come by in most places. Using a AA is great choice as they are readily available – even in local super gas station mini-marts. Furthermore, the AA battery life of this optic is advertised at 2500 hours! That is over 104 straight days of use for those of you not wanting to do the math. As my time is limited with this review unit, I can’t guarantee that this rating is correct but Lucid Optics has a history of being honest with their customers and treating them right – I have no reason to doubt them on this point.

Overall, the Lucid Optics P7 4X Weapon Optic is one of the best 4X optics you can buy under $500 dollars. It is at the high end of the optics I would use on an airsoft rifle, but if your airsoft gun already costs $300 to $400 dollars, then it is not a far shot to picking one up. It is probably a bit too much for your $150 dollar Combat Machine, but that’s an entry level rifle and this kind of optic doesn’t fit that demographic. As a final thought on this optic: It is made to stand up to the rigors of real steel shooting – so, if you have an AR platform of your own, you will also be able to use it on that too!

[easyreview title=”LUCID P7 4X Weapon Optic Review Score” cat1title=”Overall Score (out of 5)” cat1detail=”” cat1rating=”5″ ] [button target=”_blank” style=”” link=”http://gamingshogun.com/gamingshogun-rating-system/”]Learn About Our Rating System[/button]

Lucid Optics 4X Weapon Optic Product Link

Image Gallery